Thursday, December 27, 2012

Merry Christmas!

As usual, the kids woke up at the crack of 7:30 (I love how they sleep in – for little ones, anyway!)  When Jason was ready with the video camera, we all went to the living room.  The kids made a beeline for Van, our Elf on the Shelf (short for Minivan – named by guess who)!  They have loved looking for him every morning, and Meredith saw him as soon as we walked in the living room.  She was so excited Smile  Once we got past Van, we looked around at the unwrapped big presents and opened stockings.


Mmm, lollipops!


Their favorite present – a free, hand-me-down firetruck.  They LOVE it and fight over it.


Rapping Winking smile


Meredith got lots of jewelry and pretend makeup, along with a princess throne.  She could be seen all day putting on jewelry and “lipstick” and pretending to paint her nails.


Paw Paw and Kacki came over at around 11:30 and there were more presents – including cars, of course!


Meredith loves this Lady (from Lady and the Tramp) from Paw Paw and Kacki.


Grandmother came over at noon and we ate a Christmas lunch – yum!


Later in the evening, we got ready to visit Jason’s extended family.  The kids got dressed in some of their new clothes – look how cute Smile


Some of the crowd at Uncle Rick’s house:


The kids were excited to get many more presents!  Meredith loved this baby and stroller.  She strolled the baby all around the house and would occasionally pick her up, pat her back and say “hold the baby.” 


Merry Christmas from our family!


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

For Christmas Eve, we drove down to Jason’s cousins’ house, just like we did 2 years ago.  That was the last time we’d been, so Meredith had never been, and Russell didn’t remember it.  Kasey and Tony’s girls, Anna and Renee, are 6 and 4.  Russell really enjoyed playing with them.

When we got there around 1, most everyone was congregated in the kitchen (isn’t that how it always goes?) and Meredith went upstairs to take her nap in her pack-n-play. (Russell now only needs a nap 1-2 times per week, so we let him skip.)


Russell and the girls went up to the upstairs playroom.  I had brought a few of his cars (of course – they are always in my bag) and had him take them upstairs.  He ran up and excitedly told them, “I’ve got CARS!”  They didn’t seem impressed Smile


A game of Candy Land was started.  Russell had never played and quickly lost interest.  It was just as well – Renee had never played either and didn’t particularly like it when things didn’t go her way Winking smile Better to get away from the drama, Russell!


He decided to sit with me and play cars instead!


Meredith woke up at about 3:30.  When she got acclimated, we decided to open presents – but not before the kids had watched the train go around the tree several times!



Russell got some cars (of course):


Meredith LOVED this vanity from Kacki’s sister, Aunt Nancy. (We have to specify because we have 3 aunt Nancy’s!)  Meredith spent at least 20 minutes putting lipstick on, combing her hair, putting on blush/powder, and taking the bracelet on and off.  She knew just what to do – she tries to get into my makeup every morning, so she is thrilled to have her own!  It was precious!


What a fun Christmas Eve!  We were home and the kids in bed by 8:30 – ready for Christmas!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas photos

A friend of mine took some photos of our family for Christmas cards.  The kids had to be bribed (particularly Meredith, but then Russell couldn’t be left out either!)  Here are some of my favorites:







Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Party

Our little preschool co-op had a Christmas party yesterday.  I tried to get a photo of the kids in front of our tree before we left the house – this one is not too bad Smile


We had a few activities planned for the Christmas party.  One of the ladies has a flannel/felt board with tons of Bible characters – it is really neat!  So we sat the kids in a circle (sort of) for them to listen to the story of Jesus’ birth.  (We realized why we normally have the younger ones in a separate room – they really were a distraction!  Hopefully all of them learned something! Also, you can see Meredith was the only girl on Monday!)



Then came my kids’ favorite part: the cupcakes!  We sang happy birthday to Jesus and each child chose a cupcake.  The older ones are beginning to eat a little neater.  One of the little ones somehow sat in a puddle of icing!

Big kids:


In between, of course, was play time.  The kids also made a craft (a fingerprint wreath).  Then, like every year, we had a book exchange.  This was the first year that the big kids received paper books rather than board books, as they prefer those now.  Russell and Meredith both love Russell’s new book – stories about Curious George!  We haven’t read through Meredith’s book much yet (about animals) but I’m sure we will.


I’m thankful for this group and I know the kids are too!  We love this party every year.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A little interruption

Well, we had a little interruption in our Christmas spirit.  A week and a half of illness (including pneunomia), and a fallen tree dampened our spirits and our decorating for a while, but now with most of the Christmas cards in the mail and the tree re-decorated, we are back in the spirit!

They were in bed when we decorated, but Russell wanted to put a candy cane on the tree (like in a book we have).


Like brother, like sister:


We also went driving to look at Christmas lights one night, while listening to “The Wheels on the Bus” on repeat (Meredith’s current favorite song).  They really enjoyed pointing out everything they saw.  Meredith kept saying, “Wow, a big Santa!” after hearing me say it, whether she actually saw one or not Smile


We’re back to having some Christmas fun!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Getting in the Christmas spirit!

We’re fully in the Christmas spirit over here!  I’m enjoying finding fun Christmas activities for us to do as a family.  We did a few this week. Over 2 days, we made and decorated a gingerbread house (from a kit, of course). Jason and Russell took their job of putting the house together very seriously.


Russell started out really helping me decorate…


until he realized that Meredith was just eating the candy.  Then that’s basically all they wanted to do!  Oh well, that’s really the best part anyway!



Today, we went to pick out our Christmas tree!  And here it is, being sawed a little!




We’re ready for our busy, fun season ahead!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More Holiday Weekend Fun

We stayed at my parents' house through Monday.  That gave us plenty of time for fun!

On Friday, we went to the children’s museum, which the kids loved!  We walked through a pretty park on the way there.


A little shopping…


and a little farming…


They got to play in some cloud dough, which Russell especially loved.  I’ve seen the recipe on Pinterest, so it looks like I’ll be making that sometime.


I guess the kids thought this was an action shot!


Russell liked fishing for magnetic fish.  Meredith enjoyed splashing in the water.


Afterward, we had lunch at the famous Varsity restaurant!



The rest of the weekend was pretty low-key and included a cold trip to the park:



A coffee date with my cousin:


and lots of hang-out time.



We had a great time and can’t wait to come back Smile