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Christmas Eve in Duluth & Christmas at Home


Blake decided he wasn't going to travel to our parents for Christmas this year and asked if we wanted to spend Christmas with him. Scott wanted to be home for Christmas day so we went up a couple days before Christmas Eve to spend a few days in Duluth.

We had big plans for Christmas morning, but I also didn't want to miss a stay in Duluth.

Somehow we always end up in Duluth around Christmas time. It would have been weird to skip it this year.

We haven't visited Duluth much this year with COVID. It was nice to be up here. Both of our households have been very careful and this was a much better option than going to Little Chute.

We haven't been around other people without masks since October. It felt a little strange at first.

No monster pancakes this time. Blake's bed and breakfast had waffles made with a vintage Nordic Ware waffle iron.

Yum!


Today called for lots of snow. It was starting off with just hard rain so we decided to make linzer cookies until it turned to fluffier snow. Somehow this turned into me making them all and everyone watching.

You, volunteered, so we just let you take it on. I did put jam between the cookies.

We made it outside once but the snow was icy and it was so windy. Even Bentleyville closed for the night.

Blake and Meadow made a tin can robot together.

They did a pretty good job.

These guys go all out for Christmas gifts with each other.

Romeneskos...

Some of these gifts we couldn't figure out what they were.


On Christmas Eve morning we had a couple gifts to exchange with each other.

Blake had picked up some kringle for breakfast. Heck to the yeah.

Blake got Theo a water works activity book. Perfect for car rides.

Meadow got a really cool sticker book.

I was going to wait until Northwoods New Years to give my gifts. But then thought it would be nice to give my gifts to Blake and Daniel today.

I made them both camp pillows. On our trip to Theodore Roosevelt National Park this summer, Blake brought along his regular pillow which took up half his pack. 

Blake's was so fun to make I decided last minute to make one for Daniel too. 

Good job, Brookie Cookie.

Theo wanted to try out his new coloring book right away.

Despite the chilly temps we ventured outside in the new snow.

There's nothing like playing in fresh snow.


We trudged uphill to a nearby playground.


This was really an excuse to take Ruthie on a walk.


I want to buy one of these four plexes at the top of the hill.


We got a little sledding in.

Ruthie almost got run over. Careful, Blake.



It was pretty cold so we had to head back.

Ruthie wanted to stay.



Those moments before the city is plowed are my favorite.

Perfect for pulling kids through the snowy streets.


Hey, Theo.

Blake received a new lego kit from St Nick. Meadow told him he had to wait to build it with her.

We need a real-life one of these for the cottage.

Our Christmas Eve dinner plans were more or less going to be a snack dinner. I made taco dip while we made the rest of the food.

Everyone loves a good punch.

Especially, Theo.

Theo played with Blake's legos all day long while we also played Mario Kart 8.

Even Theo played Mario Kart. He thought it was so cool.


Not a bad spread this year.

A buffet of snacks is perfect in a year we can't go to real buffets.

Theo mostly ate crackers.

Blake even bought a mini cake so we could sing Happy Birthday to Jesus. A Romenesko Christmas Eve tradition. 

Appropriate, yet still strange all these years later.

After cake we drove back home so we get be back in Minneapolis before Santa came.

Before going to bed I let the kids open one gift.

The past couple of years Meadow will do chores to earn some money to buy Theo a Christmas gift. This year she got him a light saber.

I thought it would be more fun if they both had one so I surprised Meadow with her own too.

She was so surprised and happy.

The kids didn't want to quit playing.

After Santa came the kids were still playing with their lightsabers. First we opened a package from my sister.

We thought it was more hand me down clothes for Theo, but there were hidden presents inside. 

Someone likes baby Yoda.

Uncle Colin and Aunt Jen got Theo baby yoda and Aunt Katrina and Uncle Dennis got him a shirt.

Meadow got some gloves, unicorn shirt and a hat. We also got some hand-me-downs and salsa from the Wrobleskis. Thanks!

This year I made Meadow and her American Girl doll matching skirts and masks. The print has Star Wars characters on it.

Meadow's gift from us was her own archery set.

Theo's gift from us was mini Picasso tiles.

We were all surprised when Santa got us a Nintendo Switch.

He really spoiled us this year.

Santa also brought us a few games.

And Nana, Uncle Colin and Aunt Jen got us a few more games.

Someday she won't be able to do this anymore.

You could say Scott and my's Christmas gift this year was a new vacuum and mop. 

We've been using the old owners clunky vacuum for too long.

So excited to try out her new matching outfit. A year ago I never would have guessed that I'd be making masks for Meadow and her doll.

Of course we had to try out the new Nintendo Switch.

We started with Super Mario Maker 2.

We didn't have any special meals planned for dinner so I ordered sushi.

We love Sushi Train. Can't wait to go back there in person soon.

Not a bad Christmas dinner.

We took a little break from the Switch and got outside. Meadow wanted to practice her bow and arrow.

Don't worry she didn't hit any buildings but we did lose an arrow in the snowbank.

The next day after many hours of playing video games we went for a walk at Louisiana Oaks Park. I had heard it was lit up with Christmas lights.

As usual anytime we suggest going outside the kids say no. As soon as we are outside they don't want to leave. 

Typical, typical children.

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