Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Christmas morning in our home. My parents stayed over for a couple of nights. Like they have for the past three years. I love this. I hope they keep staying over so we can keep having a quiet family Christmas at our house. Hint, hint...
Seven people's gifts under the tree, after Santa came and before the kids got up. Umm... "Merry Excess?"
Seven people's stockings. We like 'em stretchy!

Pointing out that, yes indeed, Santa had struck in the night!

Christmas morning dawned beautiful! Couldn't have asked for a nicer day.

Mom intervening in what was proving to be a very nasty scrap between two children who both like the same books and don't know how to share very well. Don't they look sweet and innocent? That's because you can't see the bloody gash on Connor's face that Kirstin just finished giving him for trying to take this book away from her...

A mouth full of gummy bears, playdough, and something long and cylindrical... a recipe for a creative mess, for sure, in the hands of my crazy boy! :)

Alex showing off his new Lightning McQueen Blanket. Thanks, Nathan!

Talking on the phone... all day. It's the only day of the year that a phone ringing off the hook doesn't annoy me! Thanks for calling, everyone!

Showing off her new Christmas dress from my parents. Her hair is still lying flat, that's how you know this photos is taken first thing in the morning!

Absolutely thrilled with their interactive Buzz Lightyear and Woody dolls. Alex wrote a letter and asked Santa for them. He was so happy to get them. And I quote: "Hey! I ordered these!"

My goofy girl, taking a break from the festivities to read her book... upside down! :)

Now they're all enjoying their books, peacefully. Whew! Thanks Mom!

... and, the afternoon aftermath. Not bad, actually, it looks worse today than it did that afternoon.
So pleased with her hat, she ripped three of them before my Dad finally stopped giving them to her.

"Don we now our gay... paper hats, Fa la la la la la la la la"

What to do with your stocking once you've emptied it! :)

And now, onwards to New Year's. Happy Birthday Connor, Happy New Year, everyone else! I hope your 2010 is better than, or at least as good as 2009 was for you!

Monday, 28 December 2009

Christmas Eve

I had to work Christmas Eve, but pretty much every year we get an email from the powers that be, saying that non-essential staff (myself --- comes in handy sometimes) are allowed to leave at 2:30. As long as we leave one admin and one protection worker in the office, basically we're off two hours early. Woohoo! So we waited. All day. And that annual email kept eluding us. Finally I phoned home and said, "I'll be working until 4:30, you're going to have to start cutting up the veggies". I had visions of my company all arriving before me and dinner being ready, oh, somewhere in the vicinity of 8:00. Then at 2:23, that familiar ding singling the proverbial "You have mail" sounded and that was it... Christmas Holidays started early. Yay!

My parents, Cory's parents, his sister, and one of his Grandmothers, joined us at our place for Christmas Eve dinner. We served appies again this year. Along with mulled apple cider (I found a yummy recipe online) and punch. The eggnog never made it out of the fridge. We buy it every year, and every year pour it down the sink. Does no one like eggnog? Mom donated baking for dessert. I threw in Girl Guide Cookies and some macaroons I had 'ahem' baked on my coffee break (I had to pick up milk from the grocery store) so there was lots to eat.

A portion of the spread. Best thing about finger foods on Christmas Eve? Lots of leftovers for lunch Christmas Day! The kids opened a few presents from the Freeman side of the family, as we weren't seeing them the next day. Connor quite enjoyed these pens from Aunty Lindsay. I didn't enjoy washing them off of his floor and blanket after he'd left them out for Kirstin to find! :PAlex, concentrating intently on his gift.We don't have a fireplace, but the kids made do by hanging their stockings off of the piano.Now I miss our fireplace (we had two in our old house) because this photo would have been priceless with a fireplace :(

Dinah, doing her annual Christmas ribbon hunt. She is obsessed with it. If I leave a present out that has curling ribbon on it, the ribbon will be gone by the morning. Can't convince her not to chew the darn stuff up. Now I'll be doing my annual Christmas ribbon cat vomit hunt around the house.

Grandpa Freeman reading them a bedtime story in their new Christmas pj's!

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Men doing manly things...

Here are my three guys, doing a little pre-Christmas bonding last week. My job was to keep Kirstin distracted so they could work their gingerbread magic.
Turned out pretty well, don't you think?

Check out the oh-so-serious look of concentration on my boys' faces.

"Hey Mama, guess how many candies I've eaten already?"

"What are you looking at, I'm trying to sneak another!"

The final, ahem, masterpiece? Why, it looks like it was assembled by children...

I told my kids that they weren't allowed to touch the gingerbread until after Christmas. So, bright and early Boxing Day morning, they destroyed it! Eggs, sausage, toast, OJ, and gingerbread. :)

These are the traditions that memories are made of!

Christmas Concert!

Kindergarteners sure are cute when they get up on stage and belt out Christmas Carols. Last week we had the privilege of enjoying a very ecclectic, highly unpolished Christmas Concert. It was only 75 minutes long, but because we'd been warned to get there early if we wanted seats, we had to wait for 45 minutes before it started.

As a result, my 1 year old was in tears by the time it started and my 2 year old was in tears by the time it ended.

Next year can you say "baby-sitter?" :)
Assembling for their concert debut. Soooo cute! :) Here's Kirstin before the concert, waiting for it to start. She would not sit still so I let her bop around in the aisle (I smartly snagged an aisle seat for photo opportunities, but it turned out better for the littles, too). She decided to leave us and find herself a new family two rows up. Hmm... maybe we embarassed her?

Connor dancing in the aisle during Alex's performance, giving me the evil eye because I dared take a photo of him.

My budding musician, standing next to his "best buddy". A special treat because they are not allowed to sit beside each other during class. Apparently (according to his report card, anyway) Alex and Vance often "get caught up in silliness".
Kindergarteners, gotta love 'em!

Monday, 14 December 2009

Signs of the Season...

Hmmm... guess he got tired of saying "Mama, Kirstin's touching the tree again!" :)

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Hop on Pop

So... last night was pretty cool. When it came time to read bedtime stories, Alex read to me! Yay! It was pretty slow going, but he's actually pretty good at sounding out the words. Here's some really lousy cinematography (I'm a much better photographer then videographer) but I think you can get the idea!

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Snow Day

So, after a few false starts, I think winter may actually have set in. It's been quite cold out the past several days and today we got a lovely dump of snow. It's still snowing lightly out. And I'm okay with that. My pissy, "I hate this place, let's move somewhere warmer" attitude doesn't usually kick in until February. In my utopia, it would snow until New Year's and then obligingly melt until the following November.

So I bundled up the boys and sent them out the door... which they very happily agreed to. And fiscally, I'm happy to report that everyone has a snowsuit that currently fits (because of course I didn't buy them on sale last spring like I mean to do every year, so now I don't have to worry about that again until next winter ...) Alex made this snowman, all by himself. I was really impressed that he managed to roll the balls by himself and didn't need our help this year. Turned out pretty cute, too! I supplied the carrot. Didn't have any large ones, so this is a baby carrot, but we eat so many of those, my kids probably think they're the real deal. I also supplied a scarf and toque, which I'll have to remember to rescue before they ice on to the snowman, permanently.

Happy Winter everyone! Now... where'd I put that shovel...?

All Hallow's Eve...

Too cute to be spooky... here are some pics of Halloween, 2009. The morning of... practicing weilding her candy bucket.
Just starting out on our Trick or Treating adventure.

Alex's Jack O' Lantern

Connor's Jack O'Lantern... slightly more evil looking!

More eager Trick or Treaters!

Hello? Anybody home?

My trio, posing in a particularly festive driveway.
Happy Halloween! Next stop, Christmas... anyone else think 2009 is going WAY too fast?

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Dress rehearsal...

I'm almost finished the costumes... this being my last day off before Halloween (I love that Halloween is on a Saturday this year, it's going to be so much fun, and so much less rushed), I thought I'd better try them on to see what else needs to be done. I think we're okay. I'm going to outline Spongebob's features in black, and maybe Plankton's eye, to make them pop out more. I am still working on Spongebob's hat, as the glue isn't holding for me. But if he has to go without a hat, he's fine with that. The masochistic over-achiever in me is tempted to drive to the city today to pick up more craft foam and PLASTIC CANVAS (thanks Teddi!) to see if I can make a Squidward and Mr. Krabs for Cory and I... but I think common sense might prevail and I'll put that off until next year.

So... here's our "dress rehearsal".

My little Plankton! She was NOT IMPRESSED that I had the audacity to try her costume on a week early, but I think that scowl lends authenticity to the evil genius character.

"Get me outta here!"

Okay, technically my Patrick Star didn't really want to be in his costume either... but Spongebob was happy as can be, because I let him be a Spongebob Leopard. He was wearing his costume from when he was 2. He won't believe me that it's getting too short for him...

So, in the spirit of trying on all the costumes in the house... here is what we are NOT going as this year! :)

"The Village People meets Thomas the Train..."

Monday, 19 October 2009

More Halloween Preparations

Okay... so today I continued to feel ambitious and now I have part of two more costumes made. I'm really pleased with how these have turned out, but the bodies still need some work. I'm going to have to put on my thinking cap to do the finishing touches on these.

Some more photos:

Plankton, his evil eye, unibrow, and oh-so-creepy feelers. These are going to be adorable on my sweet little daughter! :)

My Patrick hat... I am very, very pleased with how this turned out. I sewed felt on to one of those waffle-y type plastic craft thingys (no idea what they're called, obviously, but you know what I mean, you weave wool through them to create various items that people buy at craft fairs to store in their junk closets).Our costumes, thus fair, hopefully safely out of reach on top of the piano... but doubtful!Connor modelling his Patrick ensemble. Here's where I need to work on the body. Either looser, shorter shorts... or something other than a snowsuit. Not sure yet, but it's just not working for me.
And then, of course, modelling Sponge Bob (see, I fixed the eye!) and proving to me that it isn't "too big for me!"