Thursday, December 16, 2010

Woo hoo Christmas is here!

Who doesn't LOVE Christmas? Happy children, family togetherness, yummy breakfast, and the greatest feeling of all - LOVE!

Finally! Presents!

We finally made it to the BIG DAY! I just adore Ethan Ella Zadian and Niko and it makes me SO happy to see them happy on Christmas morning. I love the wonder of Christmas through their eyes!

My favorite things...

There is so much I love about Christmas, but if I were to pick my top favs, it would have to be: Love of family/friends during the holidays, The Smell of our Christmas Tree, Celine Dion's Christmas CD, and knowing the TRUE meaning of Christmas...I would even add that I love sending out our Family Christmas Card b/c as I write the names of all our loved ones on the envelopes and send them to all four corners of the world, I feel so GRATEFUL!

'Twas the Night Before Christmas....

I almost love Christmas Eve more than Christmas Day because the kids are SO excited! I love baking Santa's cookies with them. We have our traditional cheese fondue meal, siblings presents, book presents, and our Buche de Noel.

Sweet Creations.

We are DEFINIITELY on a sugar high this December, but there are too many creative activities that involve candy and chocolate. This one is our favorite - gingerbread houses and trains. As you can see, we go for whimsical (vs. perfection) theme in our home.

Santa Baby....

I love how kids just LOVE talking to Santa. My kids asked Santa to come a few days early so we could have our celebrations before heading to the Philippines for vacation. It worked!

Canadian School Christmas Cheer....

We love the school parties at the Canadian International School. Every year, our family does the craft and cookie/cupcake decorating station in each classroom. We love sharing this activity with all their school friends!

An Esplanade Christmas

We found a wonderful Christmas concert to take the kids to at the Esplanade, it was the Singapore Lyric Opera's Children's Chorale. We were so impressed we are going again next year! It inspired us to take the kids caroling at our friends' homes.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Let it snow, let it snow, let it SNOW!

One of our favorite Singapore Christmas events is TANGLIN SNOW.....the kids throw on their swimsuits and dance to rock and roll Christmas tunes and wait for 7.30pm when the bubbles start in a tropical winter wonderland of fun! This year was extra-special because HIATT cousins were in town. Perfect cousin fun!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Deck the Malls....

The malls in Singapore are all decked out for the holidays....we went to IMM mall in Jurong for the kids to go Christmas shopping for siblings gifts. We love the Japanese two dollar store DAISO.

Santa in Singapore...

Santa came to the Marriott Hotel so we paid him a visit...the kids were quite eager to tell Santa how Jingles was doing! We went to dinner with the Daynes and Liberatores and then enjoyed the Christmas lights on Orchard Road.

Dinosaur Land.

We love having Mike Daynes as a friend in the entertainment business, he is so generous with free tickets to cool shows. We went to the WALKING WITH DINOSAURS show at the Indoor Stadium. It was a theatrical extravaganza - we learned all about the various eras of the dinosaurs and watched them as they went about their daily dinosaur days. It was quite unbelievable how huge and realistic these animals were in the show!

A night at the Marina Sands.

Friday night we went to the newly-opened Marina Bay Sands Hotel. We enjoyed dinner at the restaurant RISE - kids' favorite was the chocolate fondue. After dinner, Zadie and Niko went home with our helper Alma. Then I had a special date with Ethan and Ella watch RIVERDANCE. It was an amazing event with Irish dancing, music and song. Very delightful show! We went with our dear friends the Daynes, Liberatores, Southwicks, Robisons and Lessers.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Our Sweet Santa Lucia

Mateo's side of the family is part Swedish and he grew up celebrating Santa Lucia in his home. We have continued this tradition and since Ella Paris is our only princess, she gets to be Santa Lucia EVERY year - she loves it! We gather and sing Santa Lucia and eat our favorite Swedish abelskivers.

A Danish Christmas Affair

We went to the Danish Seaman's Church at Mt Faber to enjoy the Annual Danish Christmas market. The church is a gorgeous black and white house. We loved it! We enjoyed our favorite abelskivers, beautiful Danish decorations, and the kids made lovely candle holders to bring home. Ethan was surprised when he learned Mateo was part Danish and he said, "You're telling me I'm American Filipino Swiss and NOW I'm also Danish??!! What else are we?!"

Tropical Christmas Tree Shopping

The kids love choosing a Christmas tree here in Singapore - where else in the world can you shop in December in shorts and sunglasses? I love watching Mateo and the kids decorate our tree. Nearly 15 years of marriage and I still love watching Mateo decorate....he IS Mr. Christmas!

It's that time of year....

Our Christmas Traditions have started already - singing carols as we light our Swedish advent candles, chocolate advent calendars (thanks Debbie!) and a new one this year introduced to us by the Gickling cousins - the Elf on the Shelf. We named him Jingles and he's watching the kids every day to check if they are naughty or nice. At night, he takes off to report to Santa and returns to a different position in the house. Very effective!