Wow - two months since the last update and it's already Christmas time! How time flies!
Today, we went to a show called ICE! at Gaylord National Convention Center at the National Harbor. It is 2 million pounds of carved ice in various winter wonderland scenes. We were late as I got dreadfully lost... so, sadly, we kinda hurried through it trying to catch up to one of Maia's friends we were supposed to meet there. We did see some of the sites and she went down an Ice slide... but the event was actually MUCH shorter than I thought it would be, so that part was dissappointing.
They keep it at 9 degrees - so it was a tad chilly. Reminded me of my time in Kazakhstan. Ice and all! Because it was raining/snowing on our way there today... we had to carry umbrellas to walk from the parking garage to the event. They provided us with parkas inside, which I thought meant they would take our coats (and umbrellas) until we returned their parkas... but that wasn't the case. So, we had to carry our coats, and soaking wet umbrellas, which quite promptly froze in the exihibit with all the rain/snow on them. If I knew then what I know now, I would do things MUCH differently. I'm glad we went, but I likely wouldn't do that part of the show again - the pictures on the internet are almost as good as being there in person!
We never did find her friend in the exhibit, but walked over the the hotel/convention center which was all decked out for Christmas too, and we caught up with them, and one other friend of hers as well. Then we had brunch buffet (which turned out to cost like a weeks grocery money!! Geez!!) Once there, I didn't really feel like I could leave... so we ate, and ate and ate! Great food... and I guess worth the price, but NOT what I expected! I thought we'd get the kids some nuggets or something. Yeah... right! Not that kind of place. So, shrimp coctails and prime rib meals later.. among many other things... we were well fed. At one point he said he was full - I said, I don't care - go get some prime rib! LOL. He didn't - but I did!! I told Matthew no dinner tonight.. or tomorrow... or Monday. :) We'll eat toast and water. (just kidding... but I had not planned on that meal expense.) Luckily, my kids have expensive taste, so I atleast feel like we got what we paid for! The other parents were amazed that Maia sat so well and ATE while their kids squirmed around and ate nothing. Let me tell you, put a plate of shrimp in front of Maia and I don't think you can get her down until she says so!
The bonus to this was the Mr. and Mrs. Claus were there at the restaurant too, so I got Maia to meet the Clauses without a line and I got to take pictures and video of her with them, seated between them, as she wouldn't sit on Santas lap. He also had stopped by our table a few times - so that made up for some of the expense - no line to see Santa! Awesome!
We were going to go get our tree this afternoon, but frankly, by the time we got home, the roads had gotten surprisingly bad and we decided to stay in and not risk it as it was going to get dark (and colder) soon. They called for some snow today, and so far I'd say we have about 3 inches, but it DID stick to the roads, which they didn't think it would... My driveway has a hill and it was not easy to get up by the time we got home. So, home we will stay for the evening - as we enjoy our gourmet dinner of toast and water. :) It is still snowing quite hard now, but since it's almost dark, I won't get to enjoy watching it fall for much longer. We didn't get to PLAY in it today, so hopefully it will remain for at least a little while tomorrow morning so Maia can play a bit in it.
I'm sitting here in my nearly dark living room with a candle burning and a Christmas tree lit (and partially decorated) in a nice quiet house with snow falling outside. Can you say perfect? Of course, it's also great when the kids are running around making noise, but just not quite as peaceful!!
I'll post pictures now from today's fun. If I remember how, I'll even post some short videos. (One video here - others to come in the next post by themselves.)