This year, Dora has been at a wonderfully fun age for enjoying Christmas with. As such, we’ve been going on a ton of fieldtrips. We made our annual trek to Seattle to see some of the seasonal highlights there, starting with the 20th Annual Gingerbread Village, an event which raises money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Northwest Chapter. As always, the gingerbread “houses” were amazing! The theme this year is “Once Upon a Time”. The gingerbread castle above is a replica of the castle which the Beast, from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, lives in.
This is the Brother’s Grimm Castle of Fairytales.
While in Seattle, we also went to the Seattle Festival of Trees, which is hosted at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel. The Festival “raises funds for uncompensated care, which allows Seattle Children’s to provide quality medical care to all children of the Region regardless of a family’s ability to pay.”
In addition to the Christmas Tree display/auction, the Festival of Tree includes the famous Teddy Bear Suite. This is a hotel suite that has been decked out for Christmas and is full of teddy bears. It makes a great photo-op, but can get really crowded later in the season. I am hoping that one of these years we might just stay at the Fairmont for a night and enjoy the seasonal displays without having to deal with parking, plus partake of their holiday tea while we’re there.
Last weekend, we went to a gingerbread house making workshop, which is a fundraiser for the local Children’s Museum, KidsQuest. If I have it my way, I will never again try to make a gingerbread house outside of these workshops. The houses are pre-assembled, which in itself, is worth the entry fee. They also have tons of candies, cookies, sprinkles, gum, etc. to decorate your house with. Dora decided that she hated the feeling of the frosting, so she nominated herself for dictator. She told us where things were to go, while Secunda and I did all of the actual work (Dora also noted that it was much easier to dictate if she was chowing down on candy at the same time). As you can see here, Dora had a one-track mind, which was saying “when can I get my mouth on that gingerbread house?”.
Of course we had to go to the Reindeer Festival at Cougar Mountain Zoo, where we not only were treated to two new baby reindeer (only one shown here, with his mama rolling her eyes at me), but low and behold, we found a fairy house in the Magic Forest! This was a total surprise to us. Dora had just asked me why it was called the Magic Forest and I speculated that maybe fairies lived there or something. All of a sudden, we came around a corner and the fairy house, complete with Christmas tree and lights, was just sitting there. I guess it has been there all this time, bit we never saw it before!
Another fairy-ish-themed event that we attended in Seattle was Dora’s first concert, which was the Kindermusik Symphony Serenade. One of the characters that was part of the show, was the Story Fairy. Dora fell madly in love with the Story Fairy and was crying in the bathroom, because the Story Fairy’s wings were “just so beautiful”. I kid you not!
An event that we actually attended last month, was Dora’s first play, which was not Christmas themed, but fun nonetheless. She sat through the entire play with no problem. It was a highly-adapted version of The Three Little Pigs. I had planned to buy a CD of the play’s music, but after listening to Dora sing “Piggy Power” all day for several days in a row, I decided that such a purchase was not in my best interests, psychologically speaking.
This weekend, we will be off to ride the Santa Train at the Northwest Railway Museum. This picture is one of the museum’s from several years ago, I only wish we would be greeted by so much snow tomorrow, that would make for a truly memorable affair (in fact, Dora’s memories of Mommy freaking out from driving down the mountain in so much snow, would probably be permanently seared into her brain and result in many hours of future therapy for her).