Wednesday, December 31, 2008

how'd I do?

The 'resolutions' I had for 2008 I had made into a scrapbook page at the beginning of the year. This morning I dragged it out to see how I'd done. Two of my resolutions had fallen off the page and I can't remember them right now but here's the rest:
- date night with Dale once a month (we went out for dinner in January and I think that's it!)
- make sure my kids get exercise each day (did okay with that one)
- practice random acts of kindness (a few times)
- get a four generation photograph (got one on Mother's Day, would love a better one. maybe I will need to hire her
- try an activity I've never tried before (Dale and I are going snowshoeing next Sunday)
- run a race (ahem, I 'walked' a 5k, better luck next time)
- take more pictures - get better at it ( I definitely took more pictures this year and sometimes they turn out!)
- take a class and learn something new
- build stronger relationships in my family
Some of these resolutions I had forgotten until today but looking back 2008 was a great year and I look forward 2009.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

tis the season

If you know me, you know this is my favorite time of year... to purge and organize! I feel overwhelmed after Christmas about how to accommodate all the new stuff into our home. My 'word' for 2008 has been reduce and it's worked well for me. The majority of the time I have thought about what I am bringing into our home and ..'do I need it,do I love it'. Of course that hasn't always happened especially with the little people in my life but we've definitely made progress. Yesterday I purged our closets and bookshelves. I had always thought books were off limits to decluttering but it felt good to get rid of the books that are never read or I dread reading at bedtime. Look and find books drive me crazy and Aiden only wants to read them at bedtime to prolong going to sleep. I've also really tried the one thing in and one thing out rule. I am really trying to do this with Christmas gifts we've received. Trying to find what the new stuff is replacing. Today I will be taking a car load of stuff to the Goodwill!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

dinner time entertainment

Tonight we sat down to a home cooked dinner as a family. We purposefully starved the kids so they would eat. Aiden started whining that he doesn't like chili but we had a bribe for him. Amelia kept saying it was "too hot, too hot." We assured her it wasn't hot. "It's too warm, it's too warm." We kept saying how yummy dinner was and assuring her it was okay too eat. "It's terrible, it's terrible." How can you not start laughing when you're not even two year old tells you dinner is terrible?

Friday, December 26, 2008

mullet tales: part deux

Today we mixed it up a bit and tried to get the mullet into pig tails!

december daily: day twenty five (part 2)

We also headed up to the great white north to spend Christmas with my family. It was definitely a white Christmas this year! We arrived to over 2 feet of snow! We were able to spend part of Christmas Day snowmobiling in my parents neighborhood there was so much snow! Aiden and Dale built a snow cave while a slaved away at dinner(just kidding, sort of). We had a wonderful dinner and a good visit with everyone. Merry Christmas.

december daily: twenty five

Christmas morning we were woken by Amelia. Aiden slept close to an hour longer. Then it was a race downstairs. I went ahead of the kids to turn on the tree and make sure it looked like Christmas morning when they walked into the living room. Both kids were immediately enamored with their Santa gifts. A play kitchen for Amelia and deluxe scooter for Aiden. They oohed and aahed over stocking stuffers (Aiden got a whoopee cushion, watch out!) And then we spent a nice a relaxing morning opening our gifts from each other. It was scaled back from previous years and it was lovely. Aiden loved his microscope and I think we may have a future scientist on our hands. I think my favorite gift was from Aiden, he found a building for my Christmas village that is "Jennifer's Craft Shoppe". I found it so sweet that he had recognized my name and wanted to get it for me.

december daily: day twenty four

Sugar cookies baked by the kids and egg nog (Aiden's insistence) were set out for the jolly old elf. The kids opened their Christmas jammies (Aiden was disappointed it was only pyjamas) and we tried to read Christmas stories in our bed. Amelia was all hopped up on sugar and all she wanted to do was go downstairs to the "cookies and chockit (chocolate)! The kids went to bed reasonably well for such an exciting night. Aiden asked to sing Christmas songs. His favorite song is the "Dreidel Song" (I know it's a Hanukkah song but I don't have the heart to tell him that) and Amelia did a wonderful round of Jingle Bells. Parent/Elf duty took way longer than expected and Dale and I didn't crawl into bed until after midnight.

december daily: day twenty three

I finally broke down and made some Christmas baking with the kids. I don't like baking especially finicky Christmas stuff. But I put that behind me and tackled sugar cookies, shortbread and chocolate peppermint bark. I think the peppermint bark will be a new tradition with the kids. It's so easy and fun for the kids. Smashing candy canes, melting chocolate, mix and pour! The kids especially liked licking the spoons! In the afternoon Kori and Ryan stopped by for a visit and a bit of holiday cheer.

december daily: day twenty two

Little glimpses of Christmas around our house.

Monday, December 22, 2008

december daily: day twenty one

Our Christmas brunch has been a fun tradition to see our friends during the holiday season. Yesterday I thought the weather would affect our turn out. But it didn't! It was great to see everyone and I was too busy visiting to take many pictures but that's the point!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

december daily: day twenty

Since we have moved to this neighborhood we have enjoyed a visit from the firetruck Santa each year. Santa and about 6 firetrucks arrive on a Saturday in December and collect donations of food and toys for Project Santa. The kids get to sit on Santa's lap and get there picture taken. It's usually pouring rain and the Polaroid picture is very grainy ( I love these pictures). This year there were no Polaroids ( I guess because there is no more Polaroid film to be made). Amelia didn't like this Santa and wanted to get off right away. We snapped a few pics checked out a firetruck and we were on our merry way.
In the afternoon we headed up to Canada for a little family holiday celebration. The kids had fun playing with their cousin. Last night when we left I asked Aiden if he had a good time and he replied: " Yeah, especially after the Lego!" (which had been the Christmas gift he opened).

Friday, December 19, 2008

december daily: day nineteen

I think my favorite part of Christmas is the tree. I remember as a kid sitting in the dark with just the Christmas tree on. It seemed to transform the living room into a magical place. I still love to sit and look at the tree each year. Now I love to admire the ornaments and remember the story behind them. I especially treasure the kids pictures and ornaments on the tree. I don't enjoy the set up or decorating of the tree but I love the finished result. I think a sleepover under the Christmas tree will be a fun tradition when the kids get older. The kids and I love to have the tree on from the minute we wake up until bedtime. Dale the 'eco-electrician' always turns it off when we aren't paying attention.

december daily: day eighteen

We have a fun tradition in our family: the Christmas Fairy! My Mom gave these advent calendars to the kids as babies and she co ordinates a small gift or treat to be left each night in the kids rooms counting down to Christmas. The kids love to wake up each day in December to discover what the fairy has left.
FYI: Christmas Fairy; Aiden did not think the flash cards were a good fairy gift.

december daily: day seventeen

Wednesday was a snow day for Aiden. I stayed in my pyjamas until noon crafting. Then I changed into my 'leisure suit' and fluffy socks and scrapped the afternoon away. Aiden had a blast sledding in a neighbors yard and Amelia and I stayed cozy warm inside. When Dale came home from work he took Meelers outside, she doesn't mind the cold and snow but refuses to wear mittens so it was a short stay outside.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

the mullet tail

It's surprisingly easy to whip a mullet into a ponytail. Dale and I have realized Amelia is definitely sporting a mullet these days but I can't bring myself to have her haircut just yet. She has waited so long to have some hair and if we chop the mullet she's left with nothing.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

december daily: day sixteen

My Christmas shopping is done but I felt unfinished. I realized I had not made any gifts this year. I have always made something. The first year I was married I sewed gifts for everyone. Remember those 'hot' fleece pants? Or the marathon mango chutney session, Tracy? They now make mango pitter! I decided to whip up a couple simple gifts for family and gift cards boxes for teacher gifts.

december daily: day fifteen

Monday was freezing cold and the roads were icy so... no school for Aiden. We made french toast for breakfast and sprinkled 'snow' over top.Yum.

Monday, December 15, 2008

december daily: day fourteen

It was lovely to wake up on my own Sunday morning. There was a little snow on the ground in Seattle as we headed out for brunch and a little shopping. Dale got a new winter coat just in time for this chilly weather. I got Amelia's top secret birthday present. Then it was time to head home. We pulled into the driveway and immediately spotted a 'snow lizard' in the front yard. Aiden and Grandpa had a built the lizard instead of a traditional snowman. That's my boy. We had a quick sledding session down the neighborhood hill before the cold drove us inside. The kids enjoyed hot chocolate and the adults eggnog lattes. Aiden and I played a game of checkers and Dale and Amelia played a little Lite Brite. A wonderful Sunday afternoon.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

december daily: day thirteen

Saturday was a busy day. It started with Aiden and Dale's basketball game at 9:00am, ouch. Afterwards, my Mom and I finished up some Christmas shopping and had a nice lunch at the Harborside Bistro. It was great to spend some time with my Mom. Then I raced home to get ready for Dale's Christmas party. We made it to Seattle in plenty of time, the party was nice. This year I wore red and black and I will never wear red to holiday party again. I think 90% of the women wore red, I felt a little ridiculous. Maybe a snowman vest would have been more subtle?

Saturday, December 13, 2008

december daily: day twelve

Aiden had the sharing bag from school yesterday. He brought two rubber snakes to share (scare) his classmates. Last time it was fake lizard. In preschool he brought a fake tarantula in the sharing basket. I think everyone knows to back away from the sharing bag when its' Aiden's turn. Amelia was trying on one of the snakes as a belt while I took Aiden's picture. Notice the pink boots, always.

Friday, December 12, 2008

bragging rights

Today I:

did 8 loads for laundry (seriously)
cleaned 2 bathrooms
ironed and pinned a king size bed skirt to hem
changed the sheets on 2 beds
mailed off the rest of my Christmas cards (had to track down addresses)
paid the postage and arranged for pick up by USPS for our packages
made dinner
cleaned the kitchen
put the wrapped presents under the tree
dropped and picked up Aiden from school
all before 1:30p when I need to leave for work...I wish everyday I was this productive!

december daily: day eleven

Today we broke out the gingerbread kit! Aiden had a friend over and they were most helpful in candy placement. Amelia not so much, I think she consumed more candy than Halloween. After a bit the boys got bored and went to play and Amelia and I finished up. Sadly, this house looks like it was completely constructed by children but I did about 80% of the work.


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