VIDEO: Ellie checking out the Christmas tree at my dad's house. You may want to turn up your speakers to better hear her sweet little voice! (Speaking of voices, please ignore my grating, overexcited one at the beginning.)
While we were visiting St. Petersburg, we had three different opportunities to indulge Ellie's new-found fascination with Christmas lights, and we took full advantage, because DUH. When a toddler is excited about something, it's the cutest thing ever. Never mind that the lights were enjoyable to us adults, too, because even more enjoyable was Ellie's reaction.
The first place we took Ellie to see Christmas lights was downtown St. Pete. As I mentioned, Ellie and I went to St. Pete early to see our out-of-town cousins, and Eric joined us about a week later when school go to out. On his first night in town, we took Ellie downtown to walk along the waterfront and check out the displays. She had a great time with it (especially the photo-ops)...that is, until the end, when we wouldn't let her play in the manger scene. Other than that, though, a good time was had by all!
Ellie and Daddy riding in a sleigh
She loved it.
We love a nice photo op!
Checking out the big Christmas tree
Mama won't let her climb on Baby Jesus. Worst Mama Ever!
Ellie and Auntie Kelley at Largo Central Park
"Holding" a green light in her hand
Marching like the soldiers!
Naturally, we all had to get in on that action.
Finally, we met up with my mom and Gary for dinner and then all went out to the Florida Botanical Gardens to see their light displays. Theirs focused more on birds, turtles, flowers, butterflies, and other garden-y things, but there were, of course, some holiday items thrown in. Ellie took a particular shine to a grouping of reindeer and some gingerbread men, who were the recipients of a few hugs. They also had Santa and Mrs. Claus available for photos, and that went just about as well as last time. She did, however, enjoy the dancers that were performing in the center of the garden. It was a very nice evening!
With my mom in the garden
Ellie's new reindeer buddy
Post-Santa cuddles with Grammy
Hugs for gingerbread men!
If Ellie was so much fun with all the Christmas festivity this year, I can hardly wait for next Christmas, when she'll be even more able to grasp what's going on PLUS we'll have a new little one celebrating his/her first Christmas, too! Now that sounds like a mighty fun time!