Baby's first Christmas... I remember how much we were talking about Alex's first Christmas last year when I was pregnant and we were calculating that he'll be ten months old this time of the year. Now that we celebrated it already, I can't believe these days we anticipate all year round go by so fast. The best part for us this year is that we get to experience Christmas twice, once with Mimi and Papa in DC and secondly, in New Jersey, at Julie's place during New Year's week. Alex had a great time and received lots of gifts although he didn't realize too much what was going on. He did enjoy the many Christmas lights and decorations we saw around the city.
We started Christmas weekend with a walk to Union Station to watch the train display and catch a bite at the newly opened Pret A Manger. Alex rode in style there in his smart trike and turned heads everywhere.
The friendly staff at Pret took a picture of all of us. They all loved Alex of course and he didn't mind all the attention.
The train display was a big hit, he enjoyed checking out the cute trains circling around.
On Christmas Eve, Michael and I enjoyed the evening church service while Mimi and Papa babysat Alex. He was in a goofy mood all night and it continued when we arrived home too. Here's Michael chasing him in his crib with the giant monkey. Love Alex's laughter:)
Then Christmas morning came and we sat around and opened some gifts. This is a tree ornament Alex got from Mimi and Papa... next year we'll put up a Christmas tree so we can hang it. This year we kind of skipped that part. Despite the lack of a beautifully decorated tree, Santa wasn't picky and 'dropped off' still lots of gifts for everyone.
Later in the day, we had a few friends stopping by our house and hanging out for a bit.
By the evening, we decided to get out of the house for some fresh air and check out the National Tree by the White House. We will have to start a tradition where we take Alex there each year. DC is not as famous as NYC for its Christmas decor, but it's still unique and worth exploring during this special time of the year.
Monday was another beautiful day so we drove to Mount Vernon and visited the estate. Lots of people had the same idea and we almost gave up when it took us forever to find parking. We ended up walking around there and enjoying the beautiful views and decorations. I like this picture of us by the Christmas tree, only that Alex was ready to go down for a nap and was enjoying his milk instead of posing for the camera like mommy and daddy did.
I have to say one more thing, and maybe the MOST important thing of all. Besides gifts, lights, decorations, foods, the most special part of Christmas is whom we celebrate. Baby Jesus' birth was and still is the most precious gift any of us, human beings could have ever received. I really liked what my pastor said during the Christmas eve service when he summarized this extraordinary holiday into this: "He (Jesus) came to our place, so He could invite us back to his.' Happy Birthday, baby Jesus, thank you for coming to this world!