Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Introducing Velma!

Velma has joined the world of blogging! Check her out :)

Edited: The link is now working correctly...
check her out!

Happy New Year Party!

Jules, at the Roost, is hosting a party. Post your 10 favorite pictures from throughout this year. Here are mine...

The boys' first major roller coaster by themselves... you should of seen the look on their faces (I would show you, but I only get 10 photos!)

Pepe having a blast on the "baby" playground while on vacation.

Phineous about to get 'nailed' with a snowball.

Phineous and Pepe ready to play baseball... lucky for me they were on the same team.

We often find our kids wrapped around our dogs. They love their animals!

For Pepe's 8th birthday, Tante, gave him the entire collection of Harry Potter books. I love Baby Girls reaction to his birthday gift. She knew that he would love it. Priceless!

Phineous must have crossed this 'frog pond' 25 times over the course of our stay at Great Wolf Lodge.

Baby Girl serving Mama & Grandma at the Mother's Day Tea.

All of the kids love to play soccer, but Pepe truly lives for it. He works very hard and it shows.

Phineous and a friend's first dance (?) at a summer concert.

Have fun at the party!

Monday, December 29, 2008

My Baby

My baby lost her first tooth... what a moment! So exciting for her, yet a bit sad for me. My baby is not such a baby.

Thanks, friend.

Velma saved me today... I was having a bad day. Not for any particular reason... I've just been home for too many days in a row. I was up most of the night with Pepe and a bad tummy and I was in just a rotten mood. Velma, having her children elsewhere, stopped by and made me a salad for lunch and we laughed, we roared...

Ah, I feel so much better that I am now rearranging furniture!

Friday, December 26, 2008

More crafting... with Baby Girl

At last count we had 13" of snow... which is unheard of here! So, we are continuing with our crafts. Baby Girl got this puppet kit awhile back, it was the perfect day to sew and sew and sew. She had a great time... she sewed the big pieces together and glued on the small pieces. We decided, that since we had time, we'd keep sewing... so I sewed on the little pieces for her. I think she may be addicted to it!

Oh, and look what she got for Christmas...

a sewing kit! It's filled with embroidery floss, fabric and a hoop. She's very excited.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas to All

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Time for a Craft

I've made many blankets, of course not one for me, but that is okay. These blankets are easy to make, yet warm and comforting. My husband loves his so when he drew my Dad's name for Christmas he immediately panicked... what will I get for your Dad? (Hmmm, that's the same question I've had forever.) So, he very sweetly asked for me to make him a blanket to give to my Dad. So... since I'm snowed in and the fabric has been washed for days there's no time like the present...

By the way, my Dad has a slight obsession with tractors.

Another Snowed in Day

We didn't break out the sewing machine and we didn't make Christmas tags (yet). We did clean 2 of 3 bathrooms, vacuum the entire upstairs and downstairs, cleaned out, baked cookies and went caroling.

Pepe decided that he was done with many toys. Exciting as well as bitter sweet... my baby is growing up. Gone are the transformers, GI Joe's, many stuffed animals (although he held on to a few), coloring books, and a few (baby) games as he calls them. I have four brown sacks full from him. I still need to peek in them to make sure he didn't get rid of things from Baby Girl or Phinneous.

Some school friends called and invited us to go caroling.

We looked kind of like this...

We then decorated sugar cookies and enjoyed beverages...

We returned home to see that Packers in overtime as they lost :(

I wonder what today will bring?

Monday, December 22, 2008

3 days and counting

It's been snowing since Friday... I've lived here for 33.5 years and NEVER seen this much snow. It is amazing. I finished the scarf for my sister... I will post a picture of it on her. I've cleaned out old papers and such. Next up we will make Christmas tags*, and take the sewing machine out.

* Christmas tags -- saw a cute idea in an old magazine. Trace cookie cutters onto pretty paper (scrapbook paper), cute out and embellish. Place them on your Christmas packages, in wreaths, on the tree, etc.We went for a family "night walk". It was beautiful... yes, I was in my pjs. I got dressed yesterday in them... my kids thought that I was crazy... I was so cozy. This may become a habit.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Colorful Yarn

I found this yarn on clearance at Hancock Fabrics... it was marked down to $4, however, when I checked out they were actually $.50... yes fifty cents... score! I was very excited and tempted to buy every skein in the place, but resisted so that other shoppers would find a great surprise.

Now this colorful and soft yarn is on my needles and I'm making a scarf for my sister for her birthday... don't tell her. She'll be headed back to school after the holidays and I'm sure that it will keep her warm.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Waaaaaah... no school, but at least it's snowing!

I'm not sure why we didn't have school Wednesday or Thursday but at least today it makes sense. There is snow on the ground and there is ice on it... makes perfect sense to me. We've been out to play... Pepe is still out with the dogs.

Here is old Molly very excited to be in the snow.

Baby girl and Phinneous headed down the driveway.

A fun day! Except I have shopping to do... and another storm is headed in this weekend.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

My rendiditon of "Let it Snow"... work with me here...

Oh, the weather outside isn't frightful,
But school has still been canceled.

They better be back tom
Let them go, let them
go, let them go!

Does this look like a snow storm to you?

Do we have any Greenbay fans?

My boys headed out in our sad snow to play football. I went out to take their picture and I heard, "This is just like Lambeau." I chuckled with delight... so cute. (For those of you who don't know, Lambeau is where the Greenbay Packers play football.)

Don't you love this... Pepe's new favorite book reading spot... in front of the warm pellet stove.

And, one more... no picture for this; which you'll be glad. I was knitting last night and set my stuff down. When I came back my pile was on the floor... Jeep tried to eat it. He ate the cap off the end of my needle... he's very lucky he didn't pull out any stitches from my project. I really dislike having to pull something apart and get it going again.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Happy Birthday Karmyn!
Enjoy your cake... I'm sure that it is delicious.

Look who showed up at Family Christmas Night ...

Pretty cool, especially if you are a preschool kid! If you don't tell, I'll let you in on a secret. They aren't the real Mr. & Mrs. Clause, however, they are a set of grandparents from my class. They volunteered to come to the Christmas Family night as a surprise to all of the families. They did a great job!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Traditions of Ornaments

I saw on this blog an explanation about their ornaments. I loved it. We all get to enjoy our ornaments and remember the stories behind each one. I remember which ornament "Spencer" gave me as his third grade teacher, and "Kacy" as a friend as well as the oldies from mom. Here is a small assortment of our ornaments.

From my childhood. As many of you have shared, my mom gave me an ornament each year with the thought that when I moved away from home I would have a small collection to get me started. I have many angels.

My mom also, for many years, painted each of us an ornament.

We are big Packer fans at this house (as well as Favre fans). I need a new ornament with a Jets jersey.

For the last couple of years we have made these simple clear ball ornaments. The kids choose paint and drip it inside the ornament to cover the entire surface. They turn out great every time!

An ornament representing Joe and I as a couple... again from Mom.

Do your ornaments have meaning behind them?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Have you ever?

The things I've done are in bold.

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain -- Does Dog Mountain Count -- it hurt!
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea (from the beach)
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

Kind of fun... join along if you'd like!

An Old Friend & Cold Weather Food

It's been 8 years since I've seen her. We went to high school together, hem, 15 years ago. We had our sons within two months of each other. I heard my name last night over the massive amount of children at basketball photos... there she was... my friend. I was elated. I live in the same area, on the other side of town since high school, but I don't see anyone. Maybe that's my doing... I'm sure it is. I must admit, however, that it was very fun to see her and I actually hope that I get to see her again... soon... for real conversation. It was very odd to stand there with our kids... I felt old, I felt grown-up, I felt like... WHO AM I? That is my question... do you have those moments when you wonder WHO AM I? WHO HAVE I BECOME? AM I ATTAINING MY GOALS AND DREAMS? What about you? WHO ARE YOU?

It is suppose to get very cold her this weekend and early next week... maybe even snow. For us it will mean a dusting, but it will be cold. I'm planning ahead for our meals... shocking, I know. What is your favorite cold weather, stay in the house meal/snack/beverage? Please share... I need all the help I can get!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Meme 2008

Joanne and Sarah did this meme and I decided to join in the reindeer games. No tagging, just join if you wish.

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Hot Chocolate

2.Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Wrapped

3. Colored lights on house/tree or white? both

4. Do you hang mistletoe? No

5.When do you put your decorations up? The day after Thanksgiving

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? chopped salad (it's just a salad, but my kids help to make it and then they eat everything in it... :() )

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child? Visiting family

8.When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? Probably 4th grade

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? It varies... it's our way of keeping our kids on their toes.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? With kids help.

11. Snow. Love it or dread it?Love it!!!

12. Can you ice skate? No... and you don't want to see.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? A doll that wet.

14. What is the most important thing about the holidays to you? Love

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? Anything and

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Driving around looking at lights... it's a great time to talk and relax

17. What tops your Christmas tree? A beautiful angel

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving.

19. What is your favorite Christmas song? Silent Night

20. Candy Canes. Yum or Yuck? I'm good for one

21. What do you want for Christmas? I just got my new kitchen... I'm good.

22. Do you attend an annual Christmas party? Yes, I host it

23. Do you dress up for Christmas Eve or wear PJ's? PJ's

24. Do you own a Santa hat? No

.25. Who do you normally spend Christmas with? Family.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A blur

The picture above (in the title) was 5 years ago. My boys were 3.5 and 2 years old. It was fall and baby girl was just 2 months old (thus, not pictured). We were so surprised when it began to snow as it was November. We don't get snow in November... in fact we don't get much snow at all in the Northwest... yes, the mountains do and we can drive easily to the snow, but it does not settle on us. That time of my life was quite a blur. I had my three darling babies in 3.5 years. I am so grateful for photographs. I can' t tell you how many times I've looked back on them to remember when my kids were little. As much as I was in a difficult place, I see smiles upon my children's faces and have warmth knowing that things were'nt "that bad". The photo in the snow warms my heart... to see the amazement and wonder with the snow. Daddy helped them build a pitiful snowman that day... leaves and such included in our dusting of snow. Now, as I look at recent pictures of my kids (see below... the two boys admiring Phinneous' new bike) I still see happy faces and amazement and wonder... my kids are wonderful, difficult at times, but wonderful!

Monday, December 8, 2008

I'm Back

What a week it turned out to be. My hope to document my 7 days to Party soon faded (as you can see) with the business of the week. By Wednesday, I was in full speed ahead. I managed to get everything done including:
basketball practice x3
swim team practice x2
set the 5 tables
clean off every surface
field trip
doctor's appt.
wrote 3 short papers
speech assessment
Christmas luncheon
2 school conferences
3 days of early release
oh, and Joe was out of town for 3 days...

I did miss my last Simply Living book class; which completely bummed me out as well as a couple of other things.

We had a very successful party. I forgot to take pictures... next year.

Saturday morning we had breakfast on the Polar Express. Not the real Polar Express, but our version at the church... very fun... a ton of work... but fun! With all of my other commitments for the week, I was not able to help as much as I had originally planned. For that, I felt guilty. The guys and gals did a great job.

And now... we clean and tidy and prepare for Christmas!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Poinsettias have arrived!

We get poinsettias each year for everyone at the party. For the last two years I've ordered them from the preschool and they are fabulous! I have 18 this year... so pretty.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Decorating Continues

My view this morning... lit trees always look distorted, but it is beautiful. The top of the tree is hidden by the doorway and the picture isn't composed well, but it is my memory. The other memory of the tree that I want to keep this year is of my children decorating it. They worked and worked and worked. Especially my oldest. He was reminding the other two to 'spread out the ornaments... they can't just be in one spot'. He stopped many times throughout the day to add more ornaments... I loved it when I heard him singing Christmas songs as he worked.

The Countdown... I have three advent calendars this year as I have three children. I'm all for taking turns, but this only happens once a year. Below is the Santa. Someone moves the star each day and places it in the pocket. No candy or treats just the joy of moving the star.

Not pictured is a basket of wrapped books. The kids can tell that they are books as they are really smart and well, they look like wrapped books. The books are all about some aspect of Christmas and all but three of them are from their book box. Someone will unwrap a book each day.

Third... I'm not sure what to call this... maybe the word jar?... it is inspired from the Simple Wife. It is also inspired from this book. Someone will pull a tag out of the tin (not pictured) and clip it into the "fancy" clip below (an awesome, simple craft from out Simply Living book club). I'll post another picture after the kids wake up and put a tag in it.

Suddenly, I've acquired many nativity scenes; which I love. We've been married for 11 years, so I guess this just happens over time. The bigger one on the left is from one of my students 3 years ago... we all love it. I should take close-up pictures of them... I wonder if anyone has a nativity "parade" on the internet?

The advent wreath, hanging from the dining room chandelier... oops, I forgot the candles.

The stairs wrapped with garland, lights and ribbons... always a daunting task, except this year... I found these great hooks... I used to use wire... what a pain. These hooks are totally worth it! I forgot to take a picture of them... I will take a photo and post later.

An almost empty green room to make way for the tables.

My couch and bar stools in the garage. Just for the week... the suburban has been left out in the cold.