A Magical Time of Year

This is the ice that was on my aunts railing leading up to her front door.
While it can be extremely cold out (and I have a very low tolerance for the cold, just ask my boyfriend), it is still my favorite time of year. I love everything about it (except of course the crazy nut jobs that come out of hiding for Christmas shopping). I enjoy going to church and singing Christmas songs, and watching Christmas movies over and over again. I love looking at the beautiful lights on peoples houses and buying Christmas presents for those I love most. This year I didn’t ask for much for Christmas and everyone was overly generous and I absolutely love every gift I received. Not to mention, watching my nieces and nephew open the gifts we bought for them was so much fun. They’re finally at an age when they understand Christmas and they get so overly excited, its a treat to watch them tear open their gifts and scream in delight. Also, my nephew, who will be 6 years old on December 30th had a lot to say about Christmas. My favorite was when I asked him if he has a good Christmas and his reply was, “Its always a good Christmas when my family is here.” How many 6 years say that about Christmas?? Actually how many people in general, now matter what the age, say that about Christmas!?
Here are some pictures taken throughout the week leading up toe Christmas…

These two pictures are from a ginormous church in South Barrington called Willow Creek. It is not the church I normally go to but they have one amazing Christmas service. Its pretty much like a Christmas concert, if Christmas had a concert. They have beautiful lights and beautiful voices on stage and at the end with Silent Night I swear everyone was crying. I know my mom, aunt and I were all crying because we miss my Grandpa who passed away a year and a half ago. 

These are pictures I actually took on two separate nights but I thought the trees just looked so beautiful next to the sky. Something I’ve noticed this winter is the sky at night is actually really bright! I’m not sure if this is a normal winter thing and I just noticed it now, but it seems very strange to me! Does anyone know if there is a reason for this?

Here are the dogs on Christmas. Blitzy (top picture) was sleeping with his Christmas Penguin. It actually says 2011 on his scarf because I got it at Goodwill (but hey, it was $0.49). He loves that thing. I’m surprised (and thrilled) to see he has yet to destroy it. In the bottom picture Talie is wearing Blitz’s vest because for some reason she gets skittish when she knows people are coming over to the house. So she knows when we start cleaning the house, family is coming over and that makes her nervous. We couldn’t find her vest, but we usually put a vest on her when she’s nervous as a makeshift Thunder jacket. It seems to help a little bit with her anxiety. 
Lastly, this is my favorite display of lights. They do this every year and this picture does not do it justice. First of all, the house is gorgeous, I mean just beautiful. Second of all, they not only have great taste with their Christmas lights, but they aren’t afraid to show they believe in the birth of Jesus. Also, I’m picky about Christmas lights and have a strong belief that they should all match (weird, I know). 
Well its late so I should go, expect to here from me again soon! Also, for those who follow my blog, the cookies I made did not turn out well, that is why there are no pictures (ha!). I mean they tasted good and all, but frosting cookies is not that easy (also I probably should have let them cool off first). But OH WELL, there is always next year!
Happy Holidays everyone!
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