Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Christmas Tree Adventures!

Well, call me crazy, but this year I thought it would be fun to cut down a real tree with the girls.  I LOOOOVE the smell of a real tree and really wanted the girls (and selfeshly myself) to experience picking out and cutting down a Christmas tree.  I have always wanted to do this so this was my first time along with the girls. 
 The problem:  I had built this up this wonderful fantasy in my puny little mind of how we would find our perfect tree, with our perfect family, and it would be such a joyful occasion.  Reality:  We set out at 3pm with no naps to a destination unknown.  Can you see where this is going?!
Our first stop was a dud and 25 minutes north of our home!  I mean Not. Good. At. All.  It was cold.  The girls wanted to bring home every Charlie Brown Tree in the lot.  Not that I'm opposed to a less than perfect tree, but these were bad.  They were either too big to fit in our house or 4 feet tall......and spindly.  After traipsing the 5 acres Mark and I called it a bust and told the girls we were leaving.  As you can tell from the picture above, they were not happy.  They were tired of walking, cold, and cranky. 

But we were determined and headed to destination #2, 20 minutes south of our home.  Getting the picture, we had to drive 45 minutes.  We pulled in at 4:20pm.  They close at 5pm.  That gave us 40 minutes to find and cut down our "perfect" tree.  Not much time with lots of acres and 2 girls with little legs.  My fantasy was becoming less and less the joyful occasion I conjured up. 

Paige had to pee, but we were like 1/4 mile from the entrance and there were no potties.  She wouldn't even consider going outside, even though there were no people around and lots of what looked like cow poo, so I know it would have been fine.  So we had complaints of needing to pee, Alaina was tired, I was telling them we need to hurry.  It was so pleasant.  I, of course, can't just settle for the first nice tree we come to (even though it is the one we end up with), I have to search out the entire lot because a better one might be around the corner. 

But we did find one.  One that we all liked, even if it was pretty much dark and we had no time left anyway.

Mark set to work cutting it down.  I think the girls thought it was pretty cool to cut down our own tree.

FINALLY, we are ready to head home!  It may not have been a perfect or the way I had pictured it, but I think we did have fun and would do it again.  (Though maybe not every year.)

We decorated the tree the next evening.  Mark holding the girls so they could put the angel on.

The girls in front of the finished product!  I just love this time of year with the house all cozy and decorated!
Don't you wanna just sit down with a good book and a cup of coffee!

The girls sure love it!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


 We have so much to be thankful for this, friends, Mark's job, a wonderful church family, good health, a great Christian school for Paige, and so much more.  God has truly blessed our family with riches beyond money. 

It was our year this year to spend Thanksgiving with Mark's family.  His parents agreed to take the girls a few days before Thanksgiving to give Mark and I a little break and some time to celebrate our 8th Anniversary.  It worked out that Paige would only miss a half day of school, so they got to have special time alone with Grandpa and Grandma from Sunday until we got there Wednesday evening.  I know the girls had fun!  Thanks Grandpa and Grandma for giving Mark and I a break!
Mark took the girls up to them on Saturday (and stayed Sat. night) to have a Thanksgiving dinner with his Grammie in the nursing home.  (I stayed home for some much needed alone time.)  Here is the girls' Great Grammie watching them play dominos with Grandpa.
Grandpa with his 3 oldest Grandkids.

Uncle Mat, Aunt Myra holding Ariana, Alaina, Great Grammie with Skylar, and Paige.
As you can tell by the Sponge Bob float on TV, we have now arrived and it's Thanksgiving Day!  We brought Skylar a birthday gift, as he had just recently turned 2.
Alaina with 2 month old Ariana.  I was sporting a pretty nasty cold and didn't hold Ariana so I wouldn't pass it to her.  I was pretty sad about that!
Paige with Ariana, Uncle Mat, and Aunt Myra.
And the craziness begins!
The girls wrestling.
And jumping together.
Grandma "caught" Alaina, as Skylar isn't quite sure what to make of the mayhem.
Then decides he would like to join the fun after all.
I'm going to preface this pic with a little history.  Mark and I decided, pretty much as soon as the girls could walk, that when we wanted to rest while they were playing, the worst way to wake up is a surprise attack by the girls.  Usually it is a run and jump on you attack.  So instead, we implemented a "kiss to wake up" rule.  Now, if our eyes are closed and they want to wake us up they come up and give us a kiss on the cheek.  Much better! 

So then, Mark must have come up with a game they call "Wake the Sleeping Bear"!  Here Alaina is the sleeping bear.
Paige comes up and gives her a kiss.
And wakes the bear who starts chasing her.  (Mark is usually the sleeping bear.)
Paige's turn to be the bear.
Skylar with Grandpa.
Alaina hula hooping.  Paige actually mastered Hula Hooping while there.  She is quite good.  I don't have any still pictures of her, just video.
A rare smiling picture of Skylar.
The girls' first wishbone.  They were very intent.

What happened?

I've never seen a wishbone break like this.  They actually broke both the bones off at the exact same time.  Not sure what that means!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

You may hear them say....

"Casey is a stunk."(skunk)
"I'm so stirsty!"(thirsty) or "I'm stirsty, stirsty, stirsty!"  (She's not at all dramatic!)
"Can I hold she?"/ "I lub she!"
"I'm so starving to eat!"
"I want a magic spoon!" (She apparently doesn't care for plastic kid spoons anymore and wants to use silver spoons, which she has dubbed "magic spoons".
"I'm hungry for breaksast."
"Lasterday" - any day that came before today
"Is Keller here yet?" = Is Heather here yet?
"I have a tummy hache!"

"I stampled that for you to keep it together!"  stampled = stapled
"I losed the right one!" losed = used
"I weend that!" weend = need
"Pretty Mantis" - praying mantis
"Can I have breaksast now?"
"Lasterday" - any day that came before today
"I have a tummy hache!"

Friday, November 18, 2011

Where Did I leave Off?

Okay, so I've been less than great about keeping this thing up.  But I want to.  I NEED TO!  For my girls.  These are their memories.  This is what they are going to have when they want to know when all of their firsts were and how we spent our days.  So I'm going to do this.  But I'm starting at the present.  I'm going to back blog, but you won't see those unless you go back in the history to August, September, and October.  It may take me a while to get those caught up, but I have to trudge forward with today.  So here is my random post of things you've missed.  I'll just touch on a few biggies.
We welcomed a new baby cousin, Ariana May, to the family! 

We went to the apple orchard and picked delicious Honey Crisp Apples!  (And were a little leary of the "alligator" that lived in the creek.

Paige started gymnastics again and loves it.  She can now do a headstand in the middle of the room and holds it.

We carved pumpkins for Halloween.

Unkie, Auntie, and Amelia came to visit for the Hawkeye Homecoming game and we went to the parade.

Paige is becoming quite the budding photographer.
Alaina now sleeps in a big girl bed!

And Paige has lost two teeth! 

Wow, that is a lot.  I will be blogging about each of the events, but remember you will have to check back through the history.  They will not be new posts!