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Category Archives: Traditions

Merry Christmas 2013


Merry Christmas from The Cool Family!


Merry Christmas 2013

Santa came to visit us and left his dirty, sooty boot prints everywhere again! And we were lucky enough to catch another photo of Santa in our home!
2013 Christmas

I’m really excited about our new Christmas stockings. I asked my grandmother to crochet some Christmas stockings for the kids. I love that they’ll be able to use these stockings every year and remember their great-grandma, “Nunny” 🙂
Crocheted Christmas Stockings

Our gift wrapped doorway was a bit anti-climactic this year. Our dog, Muppet, ended up pushing through first and loosening one of the sides, so the kids just sort of pushed the paper aside and walked under it like a curtain. Oh well.
Gift Wrapped Doorway

Opening up gifts and playing with new toys!
2013 Opening Christmas Gifts

Oh, and hey, Happy Thanksgiving, because I apparently forgot to publish my post last month. Oops.
2013 Happy Thanksgiving

Hope you had a very Merry Christmas!


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Santa Proof: Photos of Santa in Your Home!


Photos of Santa in your home!
Thanks to my stealthy photography skills, I’ve been able to catch Santa delivering presents to our house for the past 3 years! I’m pretty sure he knows what’s going on, but he lets me think I’m a great Santa detective anyway.

Photos of Santa in your home!

In 2010 I caught Santa checking his list…twice.

Photos of Santa in your home!

In 2011 I caught Santa cinching up his sack after delivering the gifts.

Photos of Santa in your home!

In 2012 I caught Santa reaching for a cookie!

Photos of Santa in your home!

If you’re too tired or too lazy to spend Christmas Eve hiding behind your sofa waiting to pop out and take a picture of the Big Guy in action, you may find one of these photo services helpful.

Many of these services have Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy options as well! 🙂

icslogo1
ICaughtSanta.com
Want Santa by the Christmas tree? Coming down the chimney? Eating milk and cookies? Sleeping on the sofa? Stealing a kiss from Mommy? For less than $10 anyone can bring back the wonder of Christmas and be a hero to children by catching Santa “in the act.”
*My photos above were made using ICaughtSanta.com

capturethemagic
CaptureTheMagic.com
Take photo of where you want to “catch” Santa, by the Christmas tree, fireplace, etc.
Follow the prompts to upload your photo to our magical editing page

mysantapictures
MySantaPictures.com
With My Santa Pictures, it is easy to create the perfect Santa Claus picture. Just upload a photo, then pick from over 65 different Santa pictures, adjust the Santa picture for size and placement – we do the rest

photosanta
PhotoSanta.com
With Photo Santa’s digital photo editor, you can capture Santa in your home using an assortment of jolly poses. Your kids will be amazed when you show them Santa eating up all the milk and cookies, or gently spreading the presents in their place.

santacamapp
SantaCamApp.com
Free iphone app. Add Santa to your photos to make pictures of his visit to your home. This easy to use Christmas photo app gives you photographic evidence of Santa’s visit.

catchsantauk
CatchSanta.co.uk
Why not use our catch Santa site as often as you like and create lots of different Santa Photo’s. Catch Santa coming down the chimney, taking a nap under the Christmas Tree or even kissing Mummy! You can then revisit our site year upon year and do the same.

thesantaphoto
TheSantaPhoto.com
The Santa Photo is officially in the works, offering free santa photos of santa claus in your very own home. That’s right, catch santa on camera with a photo or picture of santa clause this Christmas. Stay tuned for santa photo and santa picture updates! In the meantime, check out The Santa Video.

studio5
FREE Santa Photo: Studio5.ksl.com
4 Santa images to choose from! Santa is pretty quick, but this year you can set up a camera and catch him in action. We have the Santa. You just need to take a background picture by the tree or stockings and drop Santa in. Open your picture in a Word document and choose a Santa to add to your picture. Remember to bring the Santa picture to the front and format his position so that he is “in front of text.” Resize him as needed and crop any overhanging edges.
studio5 24955762

Disclosure: I created the photos used in this post using ICaughtSanta.com. I paid for these photos myself. I wasn’t given anything for free and I wasn’t compensated in any way. There are no affiliate links included in this post. I have not tried the other websites/services listed in this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

Photos of Santa in your home!

Have you ever caught Santa in your home?
Let me know in the comments!

labelschristmas300
Santa Proof: Santa leave sooty boot printsSanta Proof: Phone Calls from Santa


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Christmas Traditions: Gift Wrapped Doorway and Christmas Blocks


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Christmas Morning Tradition: Gift Wrap Doorway

When Santa was here on Christmas Eve, not only did he leave presents for the children, and leave his messy boot prints all over our room…but he also gift wrapped the doorway!

Santa gift wrapped the doorway!

Now the Christmas tree and the presents were trapped behind a wall of wrapping paper. The only way to get to the gifts…was to bust through the wrapping paper!

Busting through the gift wrapped doorway on Christmas morning!

It was actually harder than it looks to bust through that paper! Because of the way our doorway is set up there were actually two layers of wrapping paper to get through.

Busting through the gift wrapped doorway on Christmas morning!

Perhaps at your house the bedroom doorway gets wrapped instead of the living room, or perhaps it’s tissue paper or streamers instead of wrapping paper.

The great thing about the gift wrapped doorway tradition is that it can work for so many different families, whether Santa visits your house or not! It’s one that mom’s and dad’s can do themselves without Santa’s help. It’s one that teenagers can enjoy and look forward to as much as little children.

Busting through the gift wrapped doorway on Christmas morning!

Another Christmas morning tradition that we have in our family is the ceremonial knocking down of the Christmas blocks. Okay, it’s not ceremonial at all…but it is fun! In the photo below Jonathan was almost 11 months old and he crawled right to the blocks to knock them over.

Knocking down the Christmas blocks

It will be interesting to see how long it takes the kids to knock the blocks down this year. Will they be more interested in Santa’s footprints or the presents? Or will they knock the blocks down right away? Will they fight over who gets to knock the blocks down or cry because “So-and-so knocked the blocks down first and I wanted to do it!”
I mean, of course I like to purposely implement traditions that will inevitably create discourse amongst the children…who doesn’t?! 😉

So far knocking down the blocks has been a fun little Christmas morning tradition, we’ll see if it remains fun as the kids get older!

2013 Update: Our wrapped doorway was a little less exciting this year. Check it out here: Merry Christmas 2013! Jon seemed a little overwhelmed on Christmas morning, but when my husband pointed out the blocks to him he was thrilled to knock them down! 🙂

Christmas Morning Tradition: Gift Wrap Doorway

Does Santa gift wrap your door way?
What are some of your fun Christmas morning traditions? Let me know in the comments!


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labelschristmas300
Santa Proof: Santa leave sooty boot printsSanta Proof: Phone Calls from Santa

This post is linked to:

SITS Sharefest 12/21/2013

Creative K KidsmainbuttonThe Weekly Kids Co-OpLink-Learn-fall-2012

Christmas Book Countdown


Christmas Book Countdown Advent

Here’s a quick and easy activity we do to countdown to Christmas day. Unwrap and read a Christmas book each day until Christmas!

Christmas Book Countdown Advent

It’s already December 2 and I haven’t wrapped the books yet this year. Oops. I always tell myself that I’m going to get these things done before Thanksgiving and then I always forget, or someone gets sick, or I’m distracted by something shiny. Maybe I should wrap them this year before I pack them away. That sounds smar…Squirrel! Wait, what was I saying?

Christmas Book Countdown Advent

How does your family countdown to Christmas?
What are your favorite Christmas books?
Let me know in the comments!

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Christmas Morning Tradition: Gift Wrap Doorway10wayschristmaspjs1


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Santa Proof: Magical Santa Bootprints


Santa Proof: Magical Santa boot prints in your home!

I’m not sure what it is about our house but legendary figures are always leaving messy footprints in our house after a visit. First Leprechauns, then the Easter Bunny, and now…Santa Claus!

For the past two years Santa has magically descended our non-functioning chimney and left his sooty boot prints on our carpet on his way to the Christmas tree.

Santa leaves his dirty boot prints!

In 2011 Santa left a trail directly to the tree.
He must’ve ran out of soot on the way back.

Santa leaves his sooty bootprints on Christmas morning!

But in 2012 Santa wasn’t quite so neat.
He left footprints everywhere…what a mess!
Luckily Santa’s boot prints vacuum up quickly and easily.

Santa Proof: Santa leaves his sooty bootprints on Christmas day!

…and we noticed something interesting. Santa’s boot prints are truly magical indeed, in fact they change while he’s walking! Every so many steps he would leave a “Ho Ho Ho” or “SC” foot print behind.

Santas Magical Bootprints

In some homes Santa leaves white snowy boot prints with magical North Pole snow that doesn’t melt. For us, it’s soot. I’ve also heard reports from some families that get reindeer hoof prints inside their house! I guess it’s a good thing that we set our oats and carrots for the reindeer out on the back porch.

Santa Soles, make Santas sooty boot prints!
The product used to create Santa’s plain soot boot prints was Santa Soles. While I’ve seen many other products for creating Santa’s snowy boot prints, this is the only one that I’ve found that imitates soot. Visit SantaSoles.net and like the Santa Soles Facebook Page
Santa Soles allow you to create Santa’s footprints in your very own home, adding to the magic of Christmas morning. Santa Soles are the footprints that dreams are made of!  Santa Soles are templates that allow you, along with our non-toxic, non-staining “soot” to create Santa’s footprints right in your home! Our “soot” is safe for use on all types of flooring and vacuums up easily, making clean up a breeze!

Other stencils/templates used: “Ho Ho Ho” and “SC
Hohoho Santa BootprintSC with Snowflake Santa Bootprint

Disclosure: I found, purchased, and reviewed the product “Santa Soles” and the additional boot print templates on my own. I was not given the products for free, I was not compensated in any way, and I was not asked to post a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Santa Proof: Santa leave sooty boot prints

Does Santa leave boot prints in your house?
Let me know in the comments!

This post is linked to:

Creative K Kids

labelschristmas300
Santa Proof: Phone Calls from SantaPhotos of Santa in your home!Watching Santa feed his reindeer


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Easter Tradition: Easter Bunny Paw Print Trail (2013)


diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

For the third year in a row the Easter Bunny left white paw print tracks all over our family room (which is now the playroom).

(Watch video here)

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

The kids had to follow the bunny trail to find their Easter baskets.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

The Easter bunny hopped in through the window just like he did in 2011 and 2012.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

This year he hid Jonathan’s Easter basket inside of the play kitchen.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

The Easter bunny hopped all over the playroom leaving his footprints behind.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

He even hopped onto the table to get a closer look at Adaline’s stuffed bunny.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

Then the Easter Bunny hid Adaline’s Easter Basket under the art table.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

Adaline searched for both Easter baskets since Jon is 14 months old and was not very interested in the whole thing.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

Adaline was so excited about the Easter Bunny’s footprints being everywhere, she just kept running around in circles pretending she was bunny!

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

The kids enjoyed inspecting the Easter Bunny paw prints closely.

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

Yet another fun visit from the Easter Bunny…that rascally rabbit! 🙂

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

diy Easter bunny paw print trail tradition

Does the Easter Bunny leave paw prints at your house? Does he hide the Easter basket?
Let me know in the comments!

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