Category Archives: Holidays

Cookies with Santa

We have had a very full week. Something scheduled for every day and/or evening. Between 2 Christmas parties and a parade and a school Christmas event, it’s a week of festive fun.

Tonight was Cookies with Santa, with a silent auction, the first graders’ performance and of course, cookies and Santa.

Finn wanted to wear his elf pajamas. Here is Santa asking Finn what he was doing there when he was supposed to be back at the North Pole making toys.


Finn’s face was so funny as he tried to process it all.


He is one cute elf though. So is his non-elf sister.

Now if I could just get that elf to do some of my shopping or gift wrapping.

Wrapping Up October

Anybody else feeling shocked that tomorrow is November? Every year, once it’s November I feel like I’ve been pushed down a giant icy hill and my sled is not going to stop until I crash into the new year. Hoping it’s a little bit more of a powdery season and I can enjoy things a bit more. If October was any indication, though, it looks like I’m in for a speedy ride again. In fact, as I type this, I let Finn pick one cartoon, he chose Mickey Christmas so now I’m listening to “We wish you a Merry Christmas”…like I said, barrelling down the hill…

This week in particular was crazy busy. We had something every day of the week and while I’m all about planning things and creating memories, I’m sitting here on this Halloween Friday trying to get up the energy to be excited about doing stuff with the kids tonight. We usually skip out on trick-or-treating (we do our church’s Streetfest carnival instead) but since we’re in a new neighborhood this year, we feel like we need to be a bit more intentional about getting out there. Mark said, “just our neighborhood?”, I said “just our street?” Hahaha. It’s going to be freezing out there tonight – ok, maybe not literally, but 44º and dropping to 39º and lower as soon as the sun goes down is close enough.

So I apologize for what will now be mainly a photo dump, but maybe this way I can cross something off my list and not take it with me into November!

We have two beautiful trees in the front yard. The other day the kids helped rake the leaves and then got to jump in them for a while.

They were also the perfect backdrop for some pictures I took of Mia for her dentist’s office. They wanted photo submissions of kids missing their front teeth. Mia definitely fits the description!


And of course, whatever sister does, brother does. According to him, he has several loose teeth as well.

But, look how big he is…how did this happen?!

Still my sweet, silly boy who loves funny plates for breakfast:
Yes, that is a tomato for a nose. He ate several more noses that morning for breakfast. That kid gets his daily dose of lycopene, that’s for sure.

This week was a busy week at school. There was “lunch with a grand” and since her grandparents live too far away, Judy said she would come have lunch with her.

We had teacher conferences. She’s doing great and exactly where she needs to be. One thing, which I knew was coming, was towards the end when she said “now, the only thing is, I wonder if she can hear me sometimes. It’s not a disrespect thing, I think she really just didn’t hear me. Do you ever think that?” My response: “constantly, since she was a toddler” Thing is she can hear conversations Mark and I whisper in the front seat of the car. Fairly confident her hearing is fine [especially since she just passed the kindergarten hearing screening] it’s the listening she struggles with 🙂 Sometimes she is just so intense on what she is doing that she doesn’t process anything else coming at her. You can see a bit of that in this picture:
I had to tap her on her shoulder to get her to realize I was talking to her at one point. But she sure has fun while she’s hard at work!

So, we’re all learning how we can work through that. But all in all, school is fun and great and she really is learning. We’re seeing her make progress on reading and I’m excited for the day when I can hand her a book and hear her read it for herself.

In the midst of all of that, we hit the 50 days in school mark! I feel like I need a medal just like Mia got:

I do feel 50 days smarter. Kindergarten is a learning curve, especially for those of us doing this as first-time parents. Add in the fact that neither Mark nor I really did school in the states and you’ll understand how lost I feel sometimes.

And who said kindergarten never gets homework?
Ha, that’s my homework – a take home project for the teacher. Not going to lie, probably enjoyed doing that more than the average person would/should.

To celebrate 50 days in school, they did a 50s day and let kids dress up and have a sock hop. Mia loved her poodle skirt (that outfit took me all over town to put together and wasn’t even her halloween costume…)


We also had our church’s Streetfest carnival this week. According to my awesome birthday gift from my husband, I have exact proof of why I was tired the next day:
My fitbit told me I walked over 15,000 steps, just under 7 miles that day. Add in a few heavy wooden carnival games and picking up trash after the event and that would be why my quads were yelling the next morning. So, I took both kids to school and came home and had my coffee and read in a delightfully quiet house, successfully ignoring the evidence of costume preparations strung throughout the living room (hence the hairspray right next to my coffee mug).

And here we are, Halloween day. Mia got a special lunch today at school (Finn did here at home too, but he didn’t want his pumpkin one – he wanted elmo – so I ate a jack-o-lantern pb sandwich…)

Our monster and elsa pumpkins that we carved a couple of weeks ago are long gone, but they were cool while they lasted.

Now we’ll just find other ways to make today a little fun and forget that we’ll be walking up and down the street in frigid temps. I’m totally raiding the candy buckets after bedtime.

Costume pics after tonight. Stay tuned.

Happy New Year and Happy Birthday

I was going to do this yesterday, but getting home last night after all day in the car, the only energy I could muster was to let the kids play with their toys they had missed from being gone the last week and a half and then set up one of my Christmas gifts from Mark: a heated mattress pad. Why have I slept without one for the last several years?! Most amazing thing ever. So you’ll see, I had my priorities all set out and the awesome coziness of my bed totally zapped any interest to blog.

We were with Mark’s brother for Christmas Eve and all the kids (except Finn) thought they were going to make it to midnight so they all got their pajamas on and got their blankets and then promptly fell asleep way before their goal. Mia went longer than I thought she would. Determined, that one…

The next day was our travel day, but we had made plans to meet Mark’s parents for brunch on the way back through where they live since it was his dad’s birthday.  We had already celebrated when everybody was together but it was fun to see them one more time before hitting the road.

Unfortunately, Mark had to go back to work today. There was no staff[child]care for me so I worked from home. The kids are still trying to get back into the routine of things so it’s good that we have a few days at home before hitting the ground running. Finn does keep asking if he’s going to school “tomono” (tomorrow) so I guess he’s ready. I think we discovered that he likes being home. After we’d been gone almost a week, he started asking if we were going home and saying that he was ready to go. I think it had more to do with all these gifts he had gotten and he wanted to bring them home and set them all up. They both got to do that today and had a great time rediscovering all the stuff they got over the time we were there.

Everything is unpacked and thanks to my mother-in-law letting me do laundry there, I didn’t have to do laundry today. Now the tricky part: finding a place for all the new stuff. The playroom needs some attention….. Oh, and I guess Christmas needs to be put away. Never one of my favorite things to come back home to after I feel like all the celebrating is done and over with.

I have more Texas trip pictures from the last couple of days, but here are some from the birthday celebration. We all had so much fun having a party for Grandpa!

Marcy found these great photo booth props and we knew the kids would have fun with them.

[Where was that POW one when I was doing Finn’s superhero birthday?!]

There were some blank ones to write a custom message. We thought this was the perfect thing to put on one of them…
Yep, it was a big birthday! So glad we were all together for it. (It’s been years since we’ve all been together so this was a fun treat. We know how rare it is so our gift as kids to the parents was to have professional photos taken. We just got proofs last night and I’m so glad we did it. So great to have pictures of everyone together).

While we got dinner ready, the kids watched a movie. They were all really nice and quiet (or so I thought).
As I looked at that picture, I noticed Mia is actually in.the.air. over that ottoman. Guess they weren’t all so still the whole time. Sorry we were bouncing on your furniture, Grandma and Grandpa!

Instead of cake, we made a donut tower. Finn totally approved, seeing as he had a donut tower for his birthday party too. There were a few more candles on Grandpa’s though…IMGP5817

All the grandkids.
Notice Finn prefers his prop to be a donut.

Happy Birthday, Grandpa! So glad we were there to celebrate with you. Love you!