Why I love Russians, a Tea Party and a homemade hair-do

We had our first of two Christmases this weekend. The in-laws came in and we had a lovely time celebrating with them. The kids got some really fun new gifts. Sloan has not taken this outfit off since he got it Friday night (except for church, at which point we told him he absolutely had to wear regular clothes):

Landon hates Sloan’s new outfit, though, along with the Star Trooper helmet that he got so everytime Sloan comes out with one of the masks on, Landon scampers as fast as his pudgy little legs will take him into the arms of the nearest adult and holds on for dear life with this look on his face:

Sweet Katya got a cheerleader costume and a wedding dress costume. She has no idea what a cheerleader is (which I’m fine with) and when she opened it, she pulled out the poms poms and held them up and said, “It’s eyeballs!” Lee doesn’t like the idea of his little girl playing the bride and refuses to call this a wedding dress – he calls it her princess dress. I can understand and respect that. It weirds me out a little too to have my little girl playing “wedding.” Yikes!

I took the kids to the Dollar store and let them pick out their own presents for the grandparents this year. I tried to guide them toward the practical while still giving them the freedom to choose the gifts themselves. Sloan did a pretty good job picking things out. Tia tried, sweet thing, but was very insistent on giving her Papa a small ceramic Zebra and her Bebe a wildly tacky vase. It truly was the thought that counted…

On Saturday, Sloan had his russian school New Year party. Russians don’t celebrate Christmas the same way we westerners do. Their big celebration is on New Years with the Slavic Christmas being observed on January 6 (Sveta, correct me if I’m wrong). They do have a Santa Claus figure called, Dyed Moros, or Father Ice – which is very appropriate for us given the ridiculous temperatures we are experiencing right now. Dyed Moros also has a granddaughter named Snyegurichka who helps deliver the presents. I love russians and the way that they party. They have so much fun and it’s so carefree. The adults get into it as much as the kids and laugh and sing and dance around and just all around have a great time. And, where else would you have a man dressed as some sort of forest witch pull out an accordian and start dancing and singing? Oh, and Dyed Moros came out singing and dancing as well. It was awesome. I just love that culture. (Incidentally, Sveta, I think I need some schooling on who the little forest witch and her sidekicks are that seem to be trying to foil Dyed Moros’s New Year plans. It’s a little confusing.) Another fun tradition they have is the kids dress in costume for this New YEar’s party. Again, I don’t really know why, but Sloan was thrilled because he didn’t have to take his Power Ranger costume off. You know, because nothing says holiday cheer like a blue Power Ranger (or Optimus Prime – it might be a Transformer costume, I’m not 100% sure…) Anyway, here’s a picture of the whole crew, minus the accordian playing forest man:

Afterwards, my mom, my mother-in-law, Tia and I went to a tea party at the Ladies of Lucerne Tea House.

I’ve mentioned before my love for tea parties and I was so thrilled to take Tia to her first. She did alright. It’s a lot to ask of a near three year old to sit properly around fine china and enjoy scones and finger sandwiches, but she did very well considering. This tea was geared toward kids too so they had gingerbread cookies and p,b&j sandwiches and hot chocolate. It was a fun little girly afternoon. Of course, before we left, Tia decided that she wanted to fix her hair…without asking me for help…which as we all know leads only to disaster. A half a jar of hair gel later she walked out looking like this:

Needless to say a bath was necessary and after it was all said and done, she looked like this:She’s my little doll. She’s rotten, but she’s a doll. Merry Christmas everyone! Have a blessed week.


  1. Three Against One says

    Okay now I understand why you forgot about the cookie exchange on Sunday, whew what a busy weekend! My question to you is what were you thinking saying yes in the first place, when did you ever think you would have time to bake the cookies??
    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Tia’s dress, where did you get it??

  2. Stefanie A. says

    Beautiful pictures, Kelli!! I also love Tia’s dress and the pic of you, Tia, Aunt Candy, and your mom in law is great!! Hope you guys have a wonderful Christmas! Love you, Stef

  3. blessedpath says

    I also LOVE Tia’s dress!!! Where did you get it??!! The tea party sounds sooo fun. My mom, sister and i plan to take Brooke for her next bday. It’s one of those things, we’ve talked about now the past 2 yrs and still have not done it. Sloan’s costume is a riot…oh, and it is optimus prime (Chase use to be sooo into power rangers AND transformers!!) 🙂 Sad, I actually know who it is, huh.

  4. My mother-in-law bought the dress somewhere in Arkansas – sorry ladies. And Carol, let’s keep the fact that it’s Optimus Prime between the two of us because he swears he’s a power ranger and I don’t need him having an identity crisis!

  5. Oh, dear, you made me laugh with your questions about forest man and little witch. You know these characters always confuse me as well. I can’t even call it tradition but every year different organizations prepare some sort of concerts for kids and one of the items of the programme is a play with Dyed Moros, Snyegurochka, Baba Yaga (little witch as you call it) and her sidekicks – wood goblin (it is that forest man with acordion), Koscheu the deathless and a couple of others in the leading roles. Those bad characters try to spoil plans of Dyed Moros. It’s like constant fight between the good and the bad with the victory of the good at the end. It’s very Soviet but it still lives and kids like such plays.
    As for the Chistmas. Orthodox start celebrating it On January 6 in the evening. They have Holy supper consisting of special traditional dishes (like kutya – wheat cereal), varenyky with cabbage etc. They sing carols and vertep showing diffrent Bible stories is also very popular.
    New year is a grand holiday for kids. It’s like your Christmas. Every kindergarten and school prepare party for children. Costumes are the main attribute. Oh, I remember my own costumes at school. Good times.
    and you know all these traditions come from Soviet Union. If there weren’t soviet regime, I think, we would celebrate Christmas the way you do. How’s my schooling?
    I’m happy you had a great tea party. Katya is such a lady. I LOVE HER! I bet she will be very independent. Her dress is gorgeous! I like that picture of you ladies.
    And the costumes of kids are superb. Katya is like an angel. she reminds me of a girl getting ready for her first communion in Catholic church.
    I love you, guys and wish to be with you on this great holiday. Merry Christmas