Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas ~ Cliff Notes ~

I don't want to bore you with all of the details of our various Christmas festivities.  So I thought I'd post a Cliff Notes version so you could just get all of the important highlights out of the way.  Pay attention, there may be a quiz at the end.

This is my new favorite picture of my kids.  It's just so them.  Love it.  It was taken at my grandparents house during our third Christmas celebration and they were just being silly copying each other.

Another pic of my kids taken in front of my mother's amazingly perfect Christmas tree.  I went over and saw her tree and came home and told my husband we needed to immediately throw away half our ornaments in an attempt to maybe make our tree a small fraction of how beautiful hers is.  He declined.  After all, ours has it's own, what's the word?  Charm....yeah, let's call it that.

My son checking out his new hot wheels truck.  He is obsessed with these things and will spend hours inspecting each one, okay, maybe not hours, but a good five minutes.  He got about 30 new ones this Christmas which pretty much meant he was in heaven.  By the way, have I ever mentioned that he has enormous hands?!  I thought so, but seriously, they look huge in this picture!

My daughter on Christmas morning.  Loving her bedhead here.
Oh yes, the American Girl doll.  She loved her.  She saw the box and said, "Oh, there's my doll" before she even opened it.  She named her Sophia. Then about an hour later she decided that her name was Sarah, and that one seems to have stuck.

My son opening his firetruck on Christmas morning.  Yeah, that's our 'charming' tree in the background.
I just had to throw in this picture of my husband looking thrilled at his new pajama pants.  How old do you think he looks here?  Maybe 15?  Seriously, he looks young enough to be my son.  By the way, if you know my sister in law, ask her about the time someone thought she was my brother's mother.  Actually, maybe you shouldn't...but it was hilarious...to us.

My daughter with her great aunt at another one of our Christmas celebrations.  They were checking out her new Barbie laptop.  Such a sweet pic!

My daughter and her great-grandpa.  He broke a vertebrae in his back a couple days before Christmas.  They were able to fix it with some new amazing surgery so he's home and doing great, but we did have to postpone Christmas with them for a few days.  The kids thought it was great to hang out with him in his hospital bed. 

We had a great Christmas with all of our family and hope you all did as well!  Looking forward to New Year's now! 

Pop quiz question.  What did my daughter name her doll?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It's Christmas Time in the City

Since the kids are getting a little older, we decided to do a fun Christmas outing with them this year and take them downtown.  We live in the suburbs now, but my husband and I both used to work downtown and live just a short drive from there.  For a while, we worked in buildings across the street from each other so we carpooled to work and met for lunch sometimes.  We both love the city and would love to move back someday, but it's not really the greatest place to raise a family.  So we have to get our fill of the city life in short little day trips.  Our daughter was really excited to go to the "big city" as she kept calling it for some reason.  I think she was comparing it to an episode of Curious George. 

We started off our day by ice skating on Fountain Square.  This was the first time skating for both my kids.  Here's my son standing up in them for the first time.  He did great!

My daughter was so excited.  Love her pose here.

Here's my little wall huggers.  They actually did much better than I expected.  We had to hold my son up by the armpits, which let me tell you is an amazing workout!

Standing in front of the fountain.  Trying to squat to get the top of the fountain in the frame while wearing ice skates with other skaters zooming by is much harder than you'd think!

She did not want anyone to touch her.  She can skate all by herself, thank you.

I think this may be one of the only photos my husband has ever taken.  He is afraid of my camera.

I completely love this picture.  I think it's the way your eye is drawn straight to her face.  And the beautiful snow falling around them.

He got tired of skating (well, we got tired of trying to hold him up), so we went walking around the outside of the rink with our skates still on.  I love his little pouty face.  He just wears his emotions right on his face and I love that.

That's better!  Poor little red nose.  I think his fair skin just gets red quicker than the rest of us.

While we were waiting for sissy and daddy to finish skating we bumped into Santa!  He was posing for pics and passing out candy canes.

I think my daughter would've skated all day if we'd have let her, but luckily the zamboni had to do it's thing so we were able to move on, but not before she got a pic with Santa!

After skating we had worked up an apetite so we headed over to our favorite diner, Hathaway's.  My husband and I used to eat there when we worked downtown.  They have great food and the same waitresses were there that worked there over 7 years ago!  It's such a great little place and I'm so glad we were able to take the kids there and eat at the counter.  We even ran into a friend of ours who was there with her kids for a Christmas outing as well.  She worked with me at the newspaper years ago and we used to lunch there too.  What are the odds that in a city full of people I'd see someone I know?!    

After lunch we headed out to see Santa again.  My daughter was anxious that she hadn't yet sat on his lap and told him what she wanted for Christmas.  The Macy's store downtown had a Santa that you could bring your own camera to.  While we waited in line they had paper where you could write to Santa and then put it in their giant red mailbox. 

Here's my daughter showing me her letter.  Luckily, I happen to know that Santa is bringing her one.  Phew!

While waiting in line my son saw a humongous monster truck that was remote control and cost $80 that he decided he had to have. So, he pretty much just talked about it, whined about it, looked at it and cried when we didn't take it home. I happen to know that Santa is not bringing him one, so I'm hoping he forgets about it in the next 36 hours.

Finally...on Santa's lap.  Wow, Santa really aged after coming in from the ice rink!

After we saw Santa we walked a few blocks over to the Gas and Electric Company Building to see the holiday train display.  They have been doing it for years, I even remember going to see it when I was a kid.  I didn't take any pics there or at the diner.  I have a philosophy about putting the camera away and taking time to savor the moments as they happen without having to worry about snapping a great photo.  So those moments will just stay tucked in my memory. 

I feel like I am really ready for Christmas now.  The kids are over the top excited and we had such a great time just enjoying one another's company.  Hopefully, this will become a new holiday tradition for us.  Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Snowy Day

Just when I've started to think about how long this winter is going to be and pondering as I do every year about this time of year why on earth we have to live here rather than someplace warm and beautiful, it will snow.  And then for a little bit, my spirit will brighten and I will enjoy the beauty of the winter snow without complaining and be perfectly content with this midwestern life.  Just for a bit...

Catching snowflakes.

Laughing at her brother.

Rolling up a carpet of snow.  The kids were lucky enough to have it snow on a Saturday so that Daddy could help build the snowman.  His are much bigger and better than mine.  I'm better at supervising. : )

With the finished snowman!  He's still there and it's been 4 days.  Pretty impressive.  I don't have a picture, but when we looked out at him from our front door we realized that he has some major junk in the trunk.  It's so funny!

Snow angel.

Silly snow bunnies.

Of course, my son had to bring his cars out in the snow.  And he picked white ones which he kept dropping in the snow!

More Christmas fun coming tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

That Kid

Our church had a little children's Christmas program the other night.  My daughter was in the children's choir.  She looked lovely and sat up with perfectly straight posture and sang like an angel.  This post isn't about her.  It's about my other kid...that kid.  The 3, 4 and 5 year olds had their own little choir that sang first.  I wasn't even sure if I should let my son sing since I didn't think he knew any of the songs.  He isn't really the singing type.  He will actually shush people who are singing.  But then in the car the other day he started singing one of the songs out of nowhere.  I took that as a sign.

First, we sent him downstairs to his classroom where the kids were meeting.  The teacher comes upstairs to find me saying that he is crying about something and they can't understand him.  I figured out he was crying because he had lost his Lightning McQueen sticker that had been on his shirt.  Great...I'm thinking...he'll never go up there and sing.  I was prepared for him to be that kid who goes up there and cries and hides his face. 

Well, he sort of lived up to my expectations.  He was that kid...the one who walks up on stage while the preacher is talking.  The one that when he's up there at the correct time says "hi, mommy!" and waves.  The one who turns around to his big sister who is in the choir loft and waves.  The one who almost knocks another kid off the stage on accident.  The one who sees me again after I moved for a better photo op and comes running down to me.  He says, "Mommy, my McQueen sticker is lost" while holding his finger up to show how serious he is.  I send him back up and he finishes 'singing'.  He definitely stole the show.  I'm kinda glad he was that kid.  They always grow up to be the fun ones.  And at least he didn't go up there and pick his nose...

Here they are all dolled up for the show.  Disclaimer - I absolutely cannot take a good picture using a flash and my son blinks every time!  Any tips, please feel free to send them my way.

A new favorite pic of my little princess.  I love the timeless look she's got going on here.

That's mine on the left.  I think this is right before or after he waved.  Notice the other children are doing some motions to a song that he was completely oblivious to.

Ahhh, Christmas memories.  Can't wait to make some more here in a few days!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Tooth Fairy Wears a Blue Dress

It's 4 am.  I'm sound asleep.  I hear a scream of, "Mommy" from the general direction of the bathroom.  I bolt upright in bed, ready for action (not really, more like slowly lift one eyelid and hope it's a bad dream).  Then I hear, "My tooth fell out!".  Whoa, not expecting that.  I really do bolt up to see what's going on.  My daughter is sitting on the toilet.  Oh no, I'm thinking...her tooth fell in the toilet!  Luckily, I was wrong, she was holding it in her hand.  Okay, my heartbeat can go back to normal now.  She's really excited and needs to see it.  She turns the bathroom light on full brightness and blinds me.  She thinks she sees blood and starts to panic.  I assure her it's not bleeding...but I really have no idea since I have been temporarily blinded.  I agree that we should wait until tomorrow night to put it under her pillow and then she hands me her tooth for safekeeping and trots off to bed.  I try to find a place for the tooth, afraid I will lose it and then be declared World's Worst Mother.  I'm too tired and lay it on the counter with my makeup and hope it's still there in the morning.  It is.

This is my first lost tooth experience from a mother's perspective.  It's almost as exciting as losing your own.  She really wanted to lose it at Thanksgiving in front of everyone.  We even went so far as tying a thread around it to try the slamming the door method.  But she chickened out...and it wasn't really ready to come out anyway.  Oh well, losing your first tooth on the toilet in the middle of the night isn't a bad story...right?

The tooth fairy came the next night.  This is the second time she has come to our house.  You see, my daughter has a shark tooth.  Her adult tooth came in behind her baby tooth before it fell out.  Pretty weird and scary, but according to google, extremely common.  The first time I noticed something in her mouth I thought it was a piece of food.  So I reached in to see what it was and realized it was her tooth coming in.  The drama queen thought that was the end of the world.  "Has this ever happened to you when you were a little girl?" she asked.  This is her standard question to just about everything that happens to her.  I said no and a full blown meltdown was in the works.  About 10 minutes before the bus was to arrive.  So I told her that we'd write the tooth fairy a note to tell her about her tooth coming in and see if she'd leave her some money even though her tooth didn't fall out yet.  Good thinking mom.  It worked.  And yes, the tooth fairy will take your note in exchange for a tooth and leave you a dollar. 

By the way, when I was a little girl I saw the tooth fairy in my room one night.  Did you know she wears a blue dress?  My daughter wanted to know why I got to see the tooth fairy when I was little and she has to fall asleep.  Good question.  My answer.  "Grandmama never really believed that I saw her anyway...I guess it was a dream."  Worked for her, but I swear that was one of the most realistic dreams I've ever had.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


You might expect from the title of this post that it's going to be about my son, who everyone knows is a super tough kid, but it's not.  It's about my daughter.  My sweet little girly girl.  She has this amazing ability to always get hurt.  Kinda like her mom who used to have a reputation for being a little clumsy.  And by used to I mean 'still does' and by a little I mean 'a lot'.  Apparently my parents used to joke about how I could do all these complicated tap dance and ballet moves and appear graceful, but I couldn't walk without bumping into something.  I don't think my daughter is quite that bad, but she does have an amazing ability to walk through a room and be oblivious to everything on the floor and step on every toy in her path. 

A couple weeks ago I went to my cousin's bachelorette party and the kids stayed home with their dad.  When I got home after 1 o'clock in the morning my husband was still up.  Hmm, that's weird, he doesn't usually wait up for me.  Turns out, my daughter had somehow fallen and ended up with a huge black eye and he stayed up to tell me about it.  I was thinking just a bruise, but when I went up to check on her, her whole entire eye was swollen shut!  She looked like she had been in a boxing match...with the couch.  Apparently she was trying to run and jump on the couch and completely misjudged it (surprise) and somehow landed with her face into the frame. 

Then this past week she was messing around in our van and somehow sliced her finger open.  As I'm walking her into the house she is dripping blood everywhere and screaming bloody murder like her whole hand got cut off (she has a flair for the dramatic).  I think she was just freaked out by the blood.  We called my mom which is what we always do when someone gets hurt around here for some reason.  My husband handed me the phone and says it's Dr. Mom and my daughter looks at me totally serious and says, "Did Grandmama used to be a doctor?"  She's so funny.  Turned out she was fine, no stiches needed. 

Hopefully we can be injury free here for the next few weeks.  At least through the holidays.  We're all out of band aids too. 

My little prize fighter.  Why do they always get hurt on their faces?!

This is her first big boo boo that also happened when I wasn't at home. Figures. By the way, can you believe how big her cheeks were?! So cute.


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