Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Basketball Fun

We headed to Ohio to celebrate Christmas with my family. As a bonus, we were able to attend one of my niece's basketball games. Andrew was able to attend one of my nephew's games shortly (within an hour; maybe less) after our arrival. After being in the car for 10 hours, I opted to stay home thinking I could attend a game on Tuesday. Unfortunately, it was canceled due to ice. I don't let Andrew carry my camera on his own (for obvious reasons) so there are no pictures of Colt's game.

A1 loves any excuse to eat popcorn.
Jami took A3 with her to sit on the balcony while the 7th graders played. You know he was loving that!

Colt's a little camera shy at times. Not A3.

GOOOOO JAMI!!!!!!!!!

A2 was taking it all in.

Good game Jami. We enjoyed getting to watch you play.

Monday, December 29, 2008

A Gift for Me

Abby wrote this to me a couple of weeks ago. She told me that she knows I miss her when she's not with me and that I should keep it with me all the time. She said that when I miss her, I can pull it out and read it. She's with her dad this week, so I'm pulling it out a lot.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Party Part II - 1st Grade

A2's party was subdued compared to the third grade party. It's fun being at school and watching the kids interact with their friends.

The first graders made reindeer food and

decorated cookies.

finished product

The next picture doesn't have much to do with anything and isn't a good image, but notice how tall the girl behind A2 is.

Ok, off to basketball practice.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Party Part I - 3rd Grade

The 3rd graders had their Christmas party today. They played games, sang Christmas carols, decorated sugar cookies and made ornaments.

A little goofy, but cute.

A1 and the girls. Would anyone be surprised to know that there is kissing going on in the 3rd grade? I certainly was.

Cookie mouth.
Christmas Party Part II - 1st Grade occurs tomorrow.

Monday, December 15, 2008

These are my kids...

and these are my kids on TV...

and eating popcorn

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Tag Continuance

The weekend was nice, quiet (for the most part) and peaceful. The kids and I ran an errand Friday night, grabbed some Chick-fil-A and headed home to watch Elf. I've never seen it before and parts were funny. I fell asleep at the end and I believe had a nice little nap. After I got the kids all tucked in, I wasn't sleepy. Because I wasn't satisfied with the images I had to choose from for my Christmas tag post I grabbed the camera. I'm beginning to enjoy playing with the natural light.

This is what I came up with:

the handmade

with the Hallmark Barbie

help, someone put me head first in the tree (yes, I turned him around)

the glass ornmanet from a local art gallery

can you see Arthur hiding in there?
Spiderman to the rescue

May angels watch over you...

Christmas Tag

Kristi at Fireworks and Fireflies tagged me. I'm supposed to tag 5 other people, but the only bloggers I know, well, maybe I should say that know me (I know several bloggers, but they don't know I know them), are Kristi and Jordan and she tagged him.

1. Egg nog or hot chocolate?
Definitely, hot chocolate, with Redi Whip and chocolate shavings.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just put them under the tree?
As a kid, I remember Santa presents being wrapped. Santa doesn't show the same tender loving care to my children. Santa's presents appear unwrapped under the tree. He's a busy guy, ya know? Wrapping paper is also bad for the environment, right?

3. Lights on tree/house ~ colored or white?
The tree is white and pre-lit. Thank you Jesus!! If someone helps, the lights on the house are white too. Only lights appear in the windows this year.

4. Do you hang mistletoe?
Why bother? Wouldn't you need someone around to kiss ya? I get plenty of that from the kids without mistletoe.

5. When do you put your Christmas decorations up?
Sometimes the Christmas decorations go up with me kicking and screaming at the very last minute. Not this year though, nope, not this year. I JOYFULLY put my decorations up the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Again, thank you Jesus for my artificial, pre-lit tree that was purchased at my very favorite store--Target! I'd like to say I'm being Green, saving the environment, but it would be a flat out lie...I honestly can't stand wrapping those darn lights around the tree. I used to joke that I would get a divorce over putting lights on the tree, but it wasn't that...it was something else entirely...shocking!

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?
I really enjoy the turkey and mashed potatoes.

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child?
I've learned that my long-term memory is not great (short-term either for that matter), but I remember singing Christmas Carol's at Grandma and Grandpa's Shultz's and the fire roaring. I also remember my Grandma and Grandpa Niswonger having their tree in the front room and getting to sleep in our sleeping bags in front of it.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
If you don't believe, you don't receive.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?

Yes, my kids get to open a gift Christmas Eve.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?

With a mish mash of ornaments from various people, various places. The kids also have their own ornaments they've received each year and all of those go on the tree. A2 wants to know why A1 has more ornaments than she does, and A3 wants to know why A2 and A2 has more ornaments than he does. No amount of explanation is satisfactory.

11. Snow, love it or dread it?

I fall somewhere in the middle. The kids were wanting to know if there was going to be snow in Ohio for Christmas and if they could build a snowman. A2 was drawing a snow picture this morning and wanted to know if the big ball went on the bottom. :)

12. Can you ice skate?
I wouldn't exactly call it skating.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?

No. Did I mention something before about my lack of memory...I can't remember if I mentioned it or not.

14. What is the most important thing about the holidays for you?

That my kids know that we are celebrating the birth of Jesus and being with family.

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert?

Pumpkin pie is a big favorite, but I'm not one to turn down anything with chocolate in it.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?

I don't know that we have a tradition. It seems like life has been so crazy over the last few years that has not happened. I'll have to work on it.

17. What tops your tree?

A star that lights up.

The white lights, the mish-mash, the topper.

18. Do you prefer giving or receiving?

It's definitely giving now. I love to see the look on my kids' faces Christmas morning.

19. What is your favorite Christmas song?

Silent Night and Breath of Heaven (Mary's Song)

20. Candy canes, yum or yuck?
Yum. I have some in my purse right now. A2 takes one in her lunch box every day.

21. What do you want for Christmas?
I want to feel peaceful and settled. I want my kids to know they are loved.

22. Do you attend an annual Christmas party?

23. Do you dress up for Christmas Eve, or wear pj's?

Depends on who I'm with and where we are going.

24. Do you own a Santa hat?


25. Who do you normally spend Christmas with?
One year my kids and the next whoever will take me.... :) Any takers for next year?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Do You Ever Feel Like This?

At first I thought the picture was just fun (1/6 sec.), but then I thought, hey, I've been feeling like that lately. We haven't added much to our schedule so I'm not entirely sure why. I think maybe it's just the excitement and energy that the Christmas season is adding to our lives. Maybe it's because we learned yesterday that an attorney at our former firm took his own life yesterday, or the fact that a co-worker was hit by the trolley this morning while crossing the street on her way to work. Thankfully, she's fine and at home resting now. But it does make you think.
We did attend A3's Christmas Program last week. All of the children in his class held a letter that spelled out "Merry Christmas." Yes, he attends a Christian-based daycare so we're able to celebrate the true Christmas. A3's letter was "M" and he recited, "I hold in my hand a great big M, it suits me to a T, it stands for mommy, money too, and yes, it stands for me." He did quite well and was very clear and audible for all. A proud mommy moment for me. They also sang This Little Light of Mine. That's a candle in his hand in case you were wondering.

Mommy, can we get some cookies now??

Playing around with the camera last night and I thought this was cute.

No pictures of A1. I think he was too busy not using soap in the shower and complaining that brushing his teeth is stupid and boring.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I Ask You

Does this look like the face of a child who admits he doesn't use soap? Last night I had cause to ask him this question. He looks me straight in the eyes and says, "No." And then, with all seriousness and sincerity says, "But I wash my hair and the soap runs down my body." Really?? So, although his routine has become to shower in the morning, and by shower I apparently mean stand under running water, I sent him straight to the bathroom and ordered him to use soap. And still when he returns from the bathroom, I feel the need to ask, "Did you wash your feet?" And again, I hear, "No, but I washed my body and all the soap ran down over my feet." He looks sweet enough...doesn't he?

And what about this? Does this look like the image of a girl who would lie in wait in her mother's bed early in the morning for the mother to emerge from the shower just to yell, "BOO!" and scare the daylights out of her mother? She looks innocent...doesn't she?

I realize you don't even have to see this one's face to know he can be trouble.

In 2 out of 3 cases, looks can be deceiving.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

I Can't Believe It

Basketball season is underway and all three of the kids are playing this year. Last night was the first night of practice for A2 and A3. To say they were excited is an understatement. I did take my camera and I think these sum up the feelings of A3. I'm not sure that his feet ever hit the floor.

A2 had a grand time as well. I canNOT believe how tall she is getting. Sometimes I don't realize how much the kids have grown until I see them in a photo.

She was posing for this one.

A1 had practice too, but he wasn't feeling well ~ some sort of respiratory thing ~ and I didn't get a good shot of him. Actually, I don't feel that any of the shots are that great. I did a lot of playing with the camera dial...TV, AV, white balance, flash, no flash...can Santa please bring me a speed light??? My internal flash just doesn't cut it in these situations.

A2 and A3 have 3 coaches, there are twelve 5 and 6 year olds on their team. Two of the coaches are retired NFL players. From what I've been told the head coach is quite competitive and even had the kids running last night. (I love it!) Practice was quite entertaining and I really need to take the video camera. A3 had never met Mr. Mike before, but during practice shouts out, "Hey, you used to play for the Panthers!" Mr. Mike just looked at him and A3 says, "Well, it's the truth!!" Can't you just picture his eyes and his hand motions? To which Mr. Mike smiles and says, "Yeah, it's true." Mr. Mike let us parents know quite emphatically that our kids WILL improve this year and they WILL win. It's going to be so much fun watching this season unfold.
A2 woke up during the night with her legs hurting (growing pains). She crawled in bed with me, we used the heating pad and I rubbed her legs. When that wasn't working I got up to get some pain medicine for her. Can you believe that I had to get my glasses to read the dosage??? I CAN'T BELIEVE IT. (Thus, the title of the post.) I must be over 40 or something...

Monday, December 1, 2008

Third Grade Field Trip

Last week I was fortunate enough to be a chaperone for the third grade field trip to a local Y camp. It was a CHILLY day learning about pioneer life. We played pioneer games, made rope, practiced our archery skills (A1 admitted this was much more difficult than it first appeared), made candles, butter, biscuits, cider and corn husk dolls. We were busy. I'm so thankful to be able to take a day away from work and spend it with one of my kids.

We made the rope with this yarn.
Another yarn shot ~ do you like this or the one above better? I couldn't decide.

We also pounded leaves.

Check out the arrow leaving the bow!