Little Michael wasted no time putting on his walking shoes when we returned to St. Louis after our Thanksgiving visit to Texas. And by walking shoes, I mean an adorable pair of Garanimals velcro cap toe shoes!
Although he’d taken a few “sort of” steps shortly before Thanksgiving, his official first steps and walking began during the last week of November, after we returned from Texas. He had lots of tubs and boxes to push around while I was packing up our rental house, and they may have been what inspired him to eventually take some hands-free first steps.
There were also plenty of opportunities for climbing!
The packing process and distracted Mommy that went along with it opened up all kinds of new doors for Little Michael.
And ushered in hours of fun!
He still loves the opportunity to pull items out in bulk, whether it’s trash bags, Ziplocks, Kleenex, or sheets of toilet paper. During the time that the rental house was being packed up, the cooler temperatures outside reminded us that winter was approaching and Little Michael was going to need a coat. I’m writing this in February, and he has grown accustomed to wearing a warm and cozy coat; however, during our shopping trips to find him a coat and the first few weeks of wearing one, he no likey the coat!!
His facial expression says it all. I think he found them too heavy and confining at first. It seemed like the collar touching his neck and face really bothered him. He managed to give me a weak smile while Dad tried to comfort him.
His mood had not improved when we went to the mall to look at more coats.
I am happy to say that he has moved past his intolerance of coats and now pretty much puts his on and keeps it on without a fuss. But at the beginning, I was really starting to worry about how we were going to keep our little one warm when we had to go outside!
In addition to coat shopping, visiting the puppies at PetSmart’s doggie day camp provided another break from packing everything up for the move. He was tickled watching the dogs run and play behind the glass.
Our official moving day was Thursday, November 30.
Little Michael had fun watching the movers. In the picture below, they’re rolling out Dad’s Big Green Egg, which made it safely to its new home on our deck.
Little Michael and I spent most of moving day at the new house, where he enjoyed his first meal in our new kitchen.
There was lots to see and explore in the new house!
My mom made us a welcome box to celebrate our new home. When we opened it, we found some neat items from my parents, including: “bread (yummy German Christollen), so there will always be food in your home; salt for strength and protection, and a broom to sweep away the old and keep evil away.” The broom was Little Michael’s favorite, and he still likes to use it to keep the floors tidy.
After moving day, our house was full of boxes needing unpacking and furniture waiting to be set up. But it was also December and time to celebrate the season of Christmas!
We did not have the time or energy to break out all the wooden and glass German Christmas ornaments, but Michael did find us a cute pre-lit tree. We decorated it with our 2017 St. Nicholaus Day ornaments and hung all three of our stockings by the chimney with care.
Michael even found time to build us an inaugural fire in the fireplace. Little Michael was mesmerized by the blaze. I also found a simple Advent wreath at St. Louis’ amazing Catholic store, Catholic Supply, which is still just down the road from our house. So, in spite of the chaos of the move, we were able to have some beautiful reminders of Christmas in our new home.
Michael and I also made time for a spur of the moment date night. We went out to dinner at a delicious and cozy Thai place downtown, and then to see Sebastian Maniscalco at the Peabody Opera House.
I laughed so hard my face and jaw ached afterwards! It was a five-star performance and made for a fantastic diversion during a very busy and hectic time.
Before we knew it, it was the middle of December and time to start preparing for a Christmas trip to Texas. I put the unpacking on hold and starting prepping for another drive with my little traveling companion. Since this was our second drive down to Texas within in a matter of weeks, I was starting to feel like a pro. And truth be told, I think I handled the drives with Little Michael ‘Like a Boss,” but only because he was such a super traveler!
Little Michael and I drove down a week before Christmas to visit my family in New Braunfels, and then Michael flew down on the 21st to meet us with his family in Houston.
Little Michael had a very happy time with all the doggies at his Nana and Grandpa’s house.
We went to church with Michael’s family on the 23rd. It was a beautiful service that ended with candlelight and singing. The sights and sounds captivated Michael’s attention.
We had the opportunity to take some family Christmas pictures, and Little Michael was very intrigued by the antlers on the reindeer standing beside him.
With all the celebrating and festivities, our little one was not quite awake when I snapped a selfie with him on Christmas morning.
But he sure did wake up when he found his new blue car from Nana and Grandpa under the Christmas tree!
We spent Christmas morning enjoying warm cinnamon rolls from Cinnabon and opening presents. This was our first Christmas with Little Michael actually able to participate in the opening of presents and play with his new things.
It was so much fun to watch him!
In the afternoon, we loaded up our car and headed to New Braunfels for Christmas dinner with my family. Michael did a great job eating his little portion of roast and gravy, potato dumplings, and veggies. We spent the evening opening presents and visiting.
We stayed in New Braunfels until the end of the week and then started getting ready for our trip home to St. Louis. We enjoyed spending time in Texas for Christmas with both of our families.
To wrap up this second rather lengthy recap post, I will leave you with some pictures from our house on December 30, when we got back from Texas. The snow had fallen while we were away, but the winter chill hung around until well after our return, keeping the powdery white stuff on the ground. For a girl from Texas, this was some pretty extreme cold!
We even had frost inside our house on the aluminum windows!