This was our very first holiday season that we’ve stayed here in New York City to celebrate. Now that we have two kids, it makes traveling a little bit more difficult, especially during the holidays. Thankfully we live in a city that is the most beautiful around this time of year.

Although this is our first Christmas staying at home, we’ve managed to make many NYC Christmas traditions over the years. Last weekend was a fun-filled holiday weekend that we spent walking all around the city. It was the best way to get us into the Christmas spirit.

One of my favorite things to do is visit Santa at Macy’s Herald Square. Macy’s does such an amazing job to make kids feel like they are entering a Winter Wonderland.



Harlan has been talking about visiting Santa for at least the last month. She was so excited to tell him what she wanted for Christmas. When the time finally came to meet him, she realized she was a bit scared of the man in red and wanted to chicken out. Once we told her that all four of us were going to get in the photo with her, she was okay. She cheerfully told Santa the three special things on her list.


New York City stores pride themselves in the elaborate window displays set up every year. We’ve walked up and down Fifth Avenue at night and during the day and they are a beautiful sight to see. Harlan loved getting an up close and personal look at the spectacular set up at Lord & Taylor.


And what would be a holiday walk up Fifth Avenue without a stop for some hot honey roasted nuts. A few of which Harlan made us save for her nutcracker that was at home (she was obsessed with getting a nutcracker this year.)


We also made a stop at the New York Public Library to see their gorgeous tree and check out the Charles Dickens exhibit.


One of my favorite sites to see during the time of the year is the tree at Rockefeller Center. It’s become such an icon of our city during the holiday season. Although incredibly crowded, the colorful lit up tree makes everything worth it.


Harlan is at the perfect age for a great project. She has never understood the meaning of the Christmas holiday until this year. She learned so much about the holidays at school and wanted to do anything and everything that she could that had to do with Christmas. We made cookies, snowflakes, and even indulged in decorating a gingerbread house.








This Christmas was extra special for Harlan because it was the first year she was old enough to participate in the Christmas Pageant at our church. On Christmas Eve, the children acted out the story of the birth of Jesus in front of the congregation. Harlan was a dove, but insisted that she was a pigeon.

Every now and then she truly shows you that she is a city girl through and through. Pigeons are one of the only birds that we see here in the city and there are a lot of them. She had no idea what a dove was and figured because her costume was full of feathers, she had to be the Christmas Pigeon.



After her stellar role at the Christmas Pigeon, we walked home relishing at all of the beautiful lights and Christmas displays that this city.


And then it was time to follow through with our Christmas Eve traditions.


Each year every member of the family gets a new pair of Christmas pajamas. The girls got matching pajamas this year and looked cuter than ever. MacKay and I got a pair of plaid pajama bottoms.



Christmas morning was filled with so much joy. Harlan asked Santa for a rainbow, Doc McStuffins, and a doll house. She was so happy to see that Santa came through. Avery, our music lover, received toys that either played music or let her make music. They were both pleasantly surprised with what Santa left for them under the Christmas tree.














This time of year really makes me realize just how much my family means to me.


I am so lucky to have my sister so close that she can celebrate the holidays with us.


Avery gave us the very best Christmas present this year….


She took her very first steps!


For more on A’s First Christmas, check out my post on Babble!

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