Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas 2011

Well, this year, Christmas seemed to sneak up on us and was here before we knew it or were ready!

The whole Christmas season was off for me this year.  I couldn't get in the mood to decorate or bake.  Buy gifts or wrap them.  Usually I am chomping at the bit for December 1st to arrive.

I didn't even finish all of my shopping until the Thursday before!

Then is was Christmas Eve and things got interested.   Dinner that night didn't settle for either Brian or I.  By 8 O'Clock, I was in rough shape.  My stomach was in knots and anything but a horizontal position was painful.  By 9, I forced myself to put together everything for the morning and went to bed.

Settling into bed didn't make things better and I ended up spending the whole night in the bathroom.

Brian got up with Hayden at 5 and I told him to just go downstairs with Hayden to see what Santa brought.  At 6:30, they came in to get me.....they had decided to wait for Mommy to go downstairs as a family.  Truthfully, I was WAY to sick to even care!  I made my way downstairs to the couch.  The kids were crazed with the gifts Santa brought.  Even more overwhelmed with the presents under the tree.  About 45 minutes later, Brian came down and said he wasn't feeling so hot suddenly either (COPYCAT).  By 7:45 I couldn't wait one second longer to call mom and dad.  I don't even think I said Merry Christmas...just
"Mommy, I'm sick....please watch the kids until lunchtime?"

It was the LONGEST 15 minutes! waiting for Dad to come and pick them up!  We didn't even dress them, just through stuff in a plastic bag.  Brian was on the couch, and I was in the rocking chair, watching for the truck.  We kept saying back and forth..."do you see your dad yet?"

FINALLY he arrived, I told Hayden to open the door, waved goodbye and said thanks!  I crawled into bed and didn't wake up until about noon.   Dad brought the kids back home, declaring he and mom were done having kids and left (for his own nap I presume!)  Abby went for a nap, I left Hayden with his new toys and went back to bed.

At about 3ish, we were all up and I was starting to feel a bit hungry.  Our Christmas Day dinner consisted of soda crackers and toast.

We had a wonderful Boxing Day dinner at our house and feel pretty good now compared to where we were a few days ago.

I'm sharing a few of our adventures from Christmas Eve on, Christmas Day excluded, I didn't take one single picture that day!

Christmas Eve in their new jammies and matching chairs!

The kitchen Grampa made, complete with "granite" counter top

Brian's been working on his rink and Hayden's been working on his skating

Abby played dress up with her Princess stuff from Gramma

And finally,  Daddy played restaurant with Abby

Friday, December 23, 2011

Please, Have A Seat!

This is a story about a chair!

Space for one little bum to have all for themselves!

When I was little, I had this chair that was wooden and had removable rockers so it could be a regular chair or a rocking chair..and it folded!  I have no idea where it came from, but I know I refused to let my mom ever give it away and it moved with us to every new place.

When Hayden was born, I couldn't wait to bring it upstairs out of the basement and have him use it.

A couple of years ago for Christmas, mom painted it all up and gave it to Hayden.

While I was pregnant with Abby, we were at Value Village and there was another one of those little chairs, complete with rockers and everything, and I thought:

"How perfect would it be if both kids had matching chairs?"

But it was one of those trips where there hadn't really been money to go there in the first place and the chair was about $10, so I just walked away.

I regretted that EVERYDAY!!!!!!!!  So silly to regret a chair, but I did.

Last year, I went out to some yard sales with mom and dad, and we stopped at one and guess what!?!!?

They had one of the chairs!  No question that I had to buy it this time.  It was as if I had been given a second chance to fix my regret.

So, that was about June....2 weeks ago, I remembered that Santa always uses Hayden's chair for his stocking, etc....better get Abby's chair ready too.  So, here I am at 10:40 pm on December 23, finishing it up.  But I am so happy with how it turned out.  Now my kids have matching chairs!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Officially 5

This year marked a small milestone for Hayden.  He officially turned 5.  In celebration of such birthday, we allowed him to have a party this year with his friends.  Previously, our parties consisted of Gramma and Grampa coming over for dinner and cake.  Not this year, this year we allowed him to invite 6 of his friends.

Now, the first order at hand was to pick a theme for the party.  The problem with an almost 5 year old picking out the theme is that is changes daily.  First is was a Lightening McQueen theme, then Spiderman and Monster Trucks, etc.  In the end, I went with what was easiest and picked Lightening McQueen.  In part because we have some items at home I could use to decorate with and I also knew you could rent an awesome cake pan.

I was very happy with how everything turned out for the party and felt it went over pretty well.

About a month previous to the party I had found some great little lego kits and picked up enough for their loot bags as well as some stickers and gummy snacks.

The treat bags I created myself and this is how they turned out.

I had a set of twins attending, so I wanted to make sure I was able to tell which lego character was in each bag.

The party was set to run from 11 - 2, and I knew I needed to serve something other than just cake and ice cream, but also didn't anticipate the kids eating anything much.  So, I settled on a light lunch of cheese and crackers, fruit, chips and cheesies and juice.  The spread was pretty inviting if I must say so myself.  I was right about the kids not sitting down to eat much, but they did run back and forth and snacked away over the course of the party.

The centrepiece decoration for the kitchen table was a sprinkler we had from the summer

Entertainment-wise, I didnt' plan too much.  We put together all of Hayden's Hot Wheels cars, his car mat, car tracks and anything else that fit into the theme.  We didn't play any any games really, but did do a bean bag toss into an inflatable tire we had.  Brian got to hold the target and claimed that bean bags hurt when 5 year olds pelt them at you...wimp!  They also took turns on Hayden's smart cycle and ran around like boys do.  But let me tell you this...they were all fantastic boys!  Well behaved and got along very well.  And all the gifts they brought were generous, despite being a week before Christmas.

My time saving tip that I read somewhere on the Internet and mentally sorted away for future reference was to pre-serve ice cream into paper muffin cups.  I did this about an hour before the kids arrived, covered it in saran wrap and tossed it in the freezer until it was time.  Let me tell you, what a huge time saver.  I didnt' have to fight with hard ice cream while the kids were anxious for cake.  I cut the cake and Brian put on the ice cream and served it.  Next time though I think I would take the ice cream out of the wrapper, I had one child try to eat the paper.

Speaking of cake....are you ready to see what it looked like?  I was super proud of the end result!

Like I mentioned, I rented the cake pan and followed the directions for baking and decorating.  I baked it the night before and thankfully I did.  It took about 3 hours to decorate the cake.  Hayden thought it was awesome, but I don't know if I would do it again.  It took a lot of time and was probably more expensive in the long run than had I bought it from the grocery store.

And finally, here is Hayden, at the table, getting ready to blow out all 5 candles!

Happy Birthday my boy!

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Petals to Picots: Best of 2011
I Heart Naptime Sunday Scoop