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Wednesday, December 19, 2007


so we've borrowed a tradition from pete's aunt (thanks becky!). after her kids moved out she wrote a book about the things she had done with them (special traditions, things she learned, etc.) she sent me one and one of the things we adopted was letter days. it can be done anyday with any letter but for christmas, work the letters backward on the calendar and then each letter is it's own day. you can make a meal that starts with the letter. do an activity that starts with the letter. you get the idea. so here's where we are so far....

C - we actually kind of fudged this one a bit. 1. becuase i wasn't all that organized and 2. because the thought of making more cookies was not appealing to me. mia and i spent all last week baking. now, you may think i exagerate when i say this. oh no. see we had a christmas open house/party for our entire church on saturday and we were prepared to give the people desserts. we made 100 dozen cookies (again, this is not an exageration). too bad for us it snowed...alot and our turn out was drastically hindered by the weather. we have cookies, cookies and more cookies at our house. some will be wrapped up and handed to neighbors, some will go to grandparents houses and some are being handed to anyone who happends to knock at our door. =) (the picture is of mia and her friend emma "helping" with the sprinkles. two 2 years olds with sprinkles, two 1 year olds underfoot and two moms trying to hear ourselves think over the giggling, beeping ovens, sprinkles hitting the floor, babies vying for attention and general insanity that insues when baking with small children. ya gotta love it!)

H - we had hotdogs and hamburgers for dinner then made a house out of gingerbread. okay, quick mom note here ... read the directions before attempting this task with small children. we were doing fine until we got to the part where it said "wait one hour for house to set." um, bedtime is in about 45 minutes. not going to happen. so we very carefully iced the roof anyway and decorated away. the house stayed intact and mia had a great time. asher loved chasing the stray candies that hit the floor then he and daddy took a little toy room break from the action. thanks to grandma for bringing us the house. i think we have definately found a new tradition.

R - tonight was rigatoni with red sauce and red juice to drink. then we made rudolph the red nosed reindeer (out of her hands - for antlers and a foot - for the face). we tried to do this with asher too but trying to get a 13 month old to hold still long enough to trace his hand or his foot was not in the cards today. we had a pretty hilarious time trying though. =) then we read christmas books. we have a red tin basket that we keep all our christmas books in and i think we read through almost all of them. there was a slight battle for lap space and then over which book to read when but all in all a good night. it was so great to sit in front of our tree, with the stockings on the fireplace, a little christmas jazz in the background and read christmas stories with the kids.

now here's my dilemma. what in the world do you eat that starts with "I"? we're going to do ice cream for desert but i have no idea for the meal part. we though about italian but since we just had that tonight i wasn't too sure. if you have any good ideas let me know!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

weekend away

okay so it's only about 6 weeks after our anniversary but we did finally get away. it was so nice. this past weekend we headed to chicago and the kids headed to nana and papa's. it was the first time we'd gone away for an entire weekend without the kids since they've been born. we'd snuck away for a night but an entire weekend was a special treat. so what do you do on such a rare occasion? here's our answer ...

...get a great deal on a downtown hotel (go pete!) and enjoy the palmer house all decorated for the holidays.
...laugh that they goof up the room which results in free breakfast one morning (fabulous!!) and a bigger room then we had anticipated.
...cash in WICKED tickets my parents got me for my birthday (last year ... see how bad at getting away we are?). thoroughly enjoy the show. love the story line, all the little one liners and the twists along the way. realize yet again that everything has two sides and just because you've heard one doesn't mean you know the whole story... even in a movie. =)
...walk around downtown after the show and look at all the lights. be amazed at what snow and twinkle lights can do and how beautiful it is. enjoy each other's company and the excuse to snuggle close cuz it is cold downtown in the winter (can you say wind off the lake??)
...have dinner at gino's east (pete had never been and if you go to chicago you have to have pizza!) enjoy that there is a wait for the deep dish pizza as this gives my poor toes a chance to warm up and us a chance to have good talks about us, the future, our lives, etc.
...GET TO SLEEP IN!!! (can i emphasize this point enough? of course for us this means a little before 8 but still enjoy that we do not have to get out of bed and can drift in and out for awhile. of course the first morning we were still up by 6...old habits die hard.)

naturally when we picked up the kids we were ready for hugs and kisses. we got some of those and the updates on what radar (my parents puppy) had been doing. then of course mia was not ready to leave! =) can't complain about that too much though. it was a great weekend for us and a wonderful chance to just focus on us a little. we try to do that here with date nights and time after the kids go to bed but it was really nice to have a whole weekend just for us. hope you all are better at getting away then we are and that you enjoy the time whenever and whereever you get it. =)

first snow

brrrr! it's officially winter. at least by my standards. we've had our first snowfall and by that i mean that the snow actually stayed on the ground. mia loved it! she could barely wait to go out in the snow. she went out without socks (just in her shoes) promptly did a u-turn and came back in for her boots. mind you this was my suggestion to begin with but being a mom means letting them learn for themselves that snow is cold on your feet (and it's a way better teacher then me talking my head off). we had to run a few errands and then we were set to play in the snow. on went the snow pants and off she went. asher on the other hand has decided he does not like being cold. he wanted nothing to do with this. now, this gets interesting. i now have a 2 1/2 year old who wants to do nothing but play in the snow and a 1 year old who wants nothing to do with it. can't leave either one of them alone, can't be in two places at once, can't get them to agree on a location. unfortunately for mia the freezing little brother won out and we had to cut our play time short. she was, however, very proud of the path she had made through the snow and immediately showed her daddy when he got home from work (with a slight assist from mom to explain what exactly he was looking at out the window).

(note mia heading back out to make her path as we're trying to go inside)