Yup. This actually happened a week ago...but I somehow didn't manage to post it until now. I warned you I wouldn't be super on-the-ball in December :)
The local Christian campground does a Live Nativity every year at the very beginning of the Christmas season. We went last year, but because it was so cold and the kids were so little, we just stayed inside and enjoyed the trains and snacks. This year, we decided that they could do the carriage ride (with real horses wearing bells on their harnesses!). We knew the lines get long fast, so we got there super early, and were first in line...but that meant a lot of waiting.
Waiting for the horses and carriages to arrive.
Lucas had done the Live Nativity with the youth group, but I had actually never been through. It was so wonderful. They do such a great job of really setting the seen and the mood to start your Christmas season off right.
Then, of course, we went in to enjoy the trains and snacks...and the trains some more. Did I mention this is all free? What a blessing to the community!
For snacks they have decorate your own cookies, popcorn, hot chocolate, and nuts (in a yummy sugar coating). Ryan and Allie have been taking their babies on adventures all week - and every adventure is to a place that has the same yummy treats. It doesn't even matter, to them, what the adventure is as long as those treats are there. Clearly the food really hit home.
Allie didn't leave the table until she had finished every last kernel of popcorn, but Ryan couldn't stay away from the trains. His favorite was the set that also had a fire station with a firetruck that had flashing lights and a siren and would come out. Even better, the conductor who was controlling the set knew Ryan loved it and had the firetruck running continually whenever Ryan was standing there. It was fun, from my perch, to see the conductor enjoying watching Ryan delight in the magic he was creating. I think there is probably a sermon illustration there...
My favorite memory of the night? Each table had a cup full of candy canes. Allie came and asked me if she could have one and I responded, "Peanut, we have so many at home (2 boxes). Let's leave these for the other kids and you can have one at home." I turned to check on Ryan (at the train set) and suddenly heard Lucas call out. I turn to see Allie army crawling across a table to grab a candy cane. That's my girl...
It has been great to have that visual when talking about Christmas with the twins. It was wonderful to start our December that way. Perfect first Christmas Adventure.