One of our new pre-Christmas traditions is to attend the Neiman Marcus Christmas Parade downtown. Like last year, we reserved bleacher seats right on the parade route and bundled up for what would be a freezing cold morning. We came armed with a giant thermos full of hot chocolate (a new Stanley thermos which, by the way, kept our cocoa scalding hot for about five hours, hot for about three hours more, and finally cooled to room temperature about three hours after that) and some of the other families brought Krispy Kremes. His Highness Alexander required to be handfed his doughnuts so as not to muss his new mittens.
We saw a lot of the same floats as last year along with some new ones, but it was like seeing it from a whole new perspective now that Alex is a year older and can appreciate what's going on. He really enjoyed getting to see the characters he recognized from TV, and he liked to "drum" along when the marching bands came by.
There were a lot of moments when he sat in stunned silence as he watched the floats pass in front of us, and we were sort of surprised that he wasn't more vocal when he got excited about things. However, when we were heading back to the van when the parade was over, out of the blue he exclaimed, "I'm so happy!" and grinned from ear to ear. The parade was officially a success. We can't wait to see how he reacts next year!