Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas Day and beyond...

We made it to Cashmere about 8:30 Christmas Eve night, and the kids were up bright and early at 5:30 the next morning. We spent the morning opening presents, eating, and playing with all the new toys. That evening we had a big (30 people) family dinner with WAY too much food! The next few days we tried to sled, but the snow was too dry and wouldn't pack down. The kids didn't mind though...we still spent hours outside!

Christmas Eve

We started the Christmas festivities in the afternoon on Christmas Eve. Abe's parents, sister, brother, and his wife all came over and we opened gifts. One of my favorite highlights was watching Owen open a stuffed octopus. He had seen it a while ago at the aquarium and was devastated when I wouldn't let him buy it. Mim happened to be with us, and while I was dealing with Owen's crying, she snuck over and bought it. The expression on his face was priceless when he opened up the box! He was sure he wasn't going to get it because "no one's been back up to the aquarium since we were there." Lauren got a Trojan cheerleader outfit, and Auntie Abbie completed it with a pair of matching pompoms. After the chaos of opening gifts we headed to Cheesecake Factory for a yummy meal, changed the kids into their Christmas jammies, and headed over 2 very snowy passes to Cashmere.

Sledding Fun!

Owen's friend Connor (well, his parents) invited us to go sledding with them. After a great lunch at The Rock, we headed over to the sledding hill. The kids had a great time, and the adults even got in on the sledding action as well.

Snow Day

We've had quite the weather this past week...freezing cold, snow, ice, and now I'm looking outside watching the wind howl. Abe had late start for the first 3 days of the week, and school was cancelled Thrs. and Fri., giving him an early start to Christmas break. We spent quite a while outside in the snow on Thursday...Lauren mowed the snow, Abe wimped out after about 10 minutes and went inside, and Owen and I stayed out for about 1 1/2 hrs. working on his snow "sculpture," which consisted of dumping buckets of snow onto the table. Owen had a blast, and we finally had to drag him in when he said his fingers were numb. Since we don't get snow too often, you gotta take advantage of it when it's here!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Tag

I read this on a friend's blog and so am putting it here with my answers. I hope you do the same so that I can read your answers on your blog.
1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Egg Nog...I love finding it in the store for the first time around Halloween!
2. Does Santa wrap gifts, or place them under the tree? Depends on the size
3. Colored lights on the house/tree or white? White on the house, colored on the tree
4. Do you hang mistletoe? Nope
5. When do you put up decorations? The day after Thanksgiving
6. What is your favorite Christmas dish? do Christmas cookies count??
7. Favorite Christmas memory? Owen left Ranch with carrots for the reindeer...he said they couldn't eat them without the Ranch!
8. When did you learn the truth about Santa? I really don't remember. I knew I had to play along for a while once I found out though because my brothers still thought he was real.
9. Do you open gifts on Christmas Eve? We open extended family gifts (aunts, uncles, etc) and we open our new pj's
10. How do you decorate your tree? ornaments from when Abe and I were kids, the kids' ornaments, ornaments they have made...pretty much anything!
11. Snow: love it or dread it? Love it, love it, love it!
12. Can you ice skate? I can't remember the last time I went...I'd probably get the hang of it after a while.
13. Do you remember your favorite gift? My very first Cabbage Patch Kid.
14. What is the most important thing about Christmas for you? Celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and watching the kids' excitement.
15. What is your favorite Christmas dessert? Christmas cookies
16. What is your favorite Christmas tradition? New jammies each year
17. What tops your tree? A tin star
18. Which do you prefer: giving or receiving? Definitely giving
19. What is your favorite Christmas song? I love them all, but if I had to choose a few: Away in a Manger, Come on Ring Those Bells, Grown-Up Christmas List
20. Candy Canes: yum or yuck? Yum
21. What do you want for Christmas? Spending time with all the family
22. Do you attend an annual Christmas party? Yes
23. Do you dress up on Christmas or wear pjs? Pjs in the morning and then something a little nicer for Christmas dinner.
24. Do you own a Santa hat? Yep
25. With whom do you normally spend Christmas? My family Christmas Eve and early Christmas morning, then Abe's family for the rest of Christmas, but we may flip-flop this year.

Christmas Tree Huntin'

Today we did the annual "get-our-tree-the-Sunday-after-Thanksgiving." The kids always love trying to find the perfect tree, although their idea of a perfect tree is a scrawny, 2-foot tall Charlie Brown tree. They had a great time playing hide and seek between the rows of trees, and Lauren thought she was pretty cool carrying the saw for the boys. She was a little concerned that we would lose our tree when we loaded it onto the tractor, but Owen let her know that we have a ticket with the same number as the tag that we put on the tree. After a great lunch at Farelli's, we went home and the kids helped decorate the tree. The older they get the less bunched up the ornaments are at the bottom of the tree...and I can actually spread the glass ones all over the tree, not just the top!

Turkey Day

We had a great Thanksgiving with the fam. Both sets of parents came over, as well as my brother. It was a very relaxing day, and we all ate way too much food! Being the organized, on-top-of-things person I am, I wanted to get a Christmas picture taken on Thanksgiving, order them that night, and pick them up the next day. My dad took some good ones, though it's always hard to get the kids to sit still for too long. To make it fun, Abe said if they did a few good ones we could take a silly one. Abe begged and pleaded for me to use the silly faces picture as our Christmas one, but I just couldn't do it. My excuse was that Owen's face was covered and no one could see how cute he was :) So, as a compromise, I'll stick it here...

So long football...hello basketball!

Time to move to an indoor sport for a few months! Unfortunately, the Trojans ended their football season yesterday with a loss in the quarterfinals of state playoffs. It was a great season...undefeated until yesterday. The kids were troopers, going to all the JV games on Monday afternoons as well as all the varsity games Friday nights. Lauren grew more and more engrossed in the cheerleaders as the season went on. She now spends a good deal of her days cheering...amazingly she knows at least 4 or 5 cheers (way more than her mom can do!) Owen had fun watching all his high school buddies out on the field...he could pick out about 10-15 uniforms and could tell you who they were. After going to 20+ games this season, it was inevitable that the kids would learn the Trojan fight song. Along with the cheers, we get the pleasure of hearing "Auburn Trojans, hats off to thee" sung at the top of their lungs. The kids were true Trojan football fans. It was sad to see such a great season come to an end, but Abe is happy not having to pull double duty coaching football and basketball at the same time. The kids are happy too...Lauren still gets to watch her cheerleaders in the gym, and quite a few of Owen's football buddies will be hitting the court. Go Trojans!


Because Halloween fell on a Friday, the football game interrupted trick-or-treating adventures. Owen was very concerned we weren't going to have a chance to get any candy, so we went to the game a little early and hit a few houses around the school. They both wore their costumes to the game, then we went to our friends' house afterwards. Lauren wore the Raggedy Ann costume my grandma made for me when I was 5...it was so cool to see her in it, and I was amazed how good it looked for being 25 years old! Owen was a clone trooper...daddy introduced him to Star Wars earlier this fall and he's hooked. It wasn't a typical Halloween night, but we promised Owen that next year we'd make up for the lack of trick-or-treating this year!