Friday, December 28, 2007

The Day After

Sometimes "the day after" is a bad the day after everyone's been sick, or the day after all the children get to bed really late. But the day after Christmas is a really good thing! It's the day we can relax, spend the day in our jammies, and enjoy each other and all the new TOYS! With nowhere to go and nothing on the to-do list except stay at home and have fun. We got all the playdough out the morning after Christmas. Both A and C got new sets, and we created strange and interesting creatures all morning! Even yours truly made one (you can see me below, in all my "morning glory").

Son G and my hubby worked together on the marshmallow catapult kit he got.

Here it is, loaded up and ready for firing. It can shoot all the way across the room! The other kids had fun lying on the floor on the other side of the room and having G try to shoot baby marshmallows into their mouths.

Meanwhile, son L built his "golden guardian". It is quite formidable looking.

Yesterday I had a suspicious mole removed. It's on the back of my hand and I'm not supposed to get it wet for at least 24 hours. So my better half has been "forced" to do dishes for me! (I should have told him I have to keep it dry for a week!)
And I also threw away 5 pairs of C's pants that had holes in the knee too big to be repaired. I can't keep that boy in pants right now! Good thing we homeschool and he doesn't need a huge wardrobe.
We are getting ready for company today! Yay, I'm so excited! My dad is coming from clear across the country for a 4 day visit, along with he and my mom's "fourth daughter", Aunt Marcie. I can't wait to see them!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Christmas Morning Video

Our daughter took this video with her new digital camera. It shows our youngest with his brother's new colonial era toy musket, son C with the pirate eye patch he got in his stocking, and son L playing a game on Webkinz World (online) for the first time. We gave him a webkinz in his stocking, and it is turning out to be the real hit this Christmas! Anything that gains him acceptable access to the computer is always going to be a winner. :-) It took us a while to get in gear with this webkinz craze, but I can see how fun it is for kids! Our daughter also received one and now she and L can share this fun activity together, though she is less enamored with the computer games and is more excited about the actual stuffed animal.

Family Christmas

Our tradition is to have our own little family celebration on the evening of Christmas Eve and then spend Christmas Day with my husband's parents. So after attending a candlelight service at church (which was wonderful!) we came home to eat dinner, and then began our celebration. My hubby read the Christmas story from the Bible, and since my grandpa passed away we have been using a Bible that was once his. This is always a very meaningful time for me.

The children tend to be a bit impatient (I can't really blame them!) for the GIFT OPENING!! Yes, we do take turns so that we can all watch each other. One of A's gifts was this new alphabet puzzle.

C LOVED his playdough set!

We were able to totally surprise our daughter with her very own digital camera!

Our son L was uber excited when he realized this was the Lego ExoForce "Golden Guardian" he had wanted!

And son G was thrilled to receive the lego set he had really wanted, "Holiday Train". This was a 6 car train with oodles of little accessories. It's price in the catalog was listed as $89.99 and since we had already purchased his other gifts long ago before we realized this was what he really wanted, we didn't feel we could spend that amount of money (not to mention the fact that I have a problem with paying nearly $100 for little pieces of plastic, but I digress....). Anyway, I was chagrined to learn how much G wanted this train. All he talked about for weeks was this train and how he just knew he was going to get this train for Christmas. So in early December I took another quick look at the lego website, and guess which set was on sale for half price??? We were thrilled to get this for him, and he was thrilled to receive it!!

He began putting it together on Christmas morning, and by noon it was done!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Fun

We've had such a fun time making Christmas preparations! Here is a hodge podge of things we have done recently. One highlight is the gingerbread house decorating party that our daughter goes to each December at her best friend's house. This is her 2007 gingerbread house:
Here is our son C with his newly knitted stocking from Aunt Lois! Thank you Aunt Lois!!
Our daughter had a mini piano recital this month. For a Christmas gift for her teacher she composed an original piece of music which she titled, "Quiet Thoughts". This picture was taken moments after giving the gift, and her teacher immediately sat down at the grand piano to play it. Wonderful!

Son L helped me stamp gift tags.

And of course, baking and decorating Christmas cookies!!!

I showed L and C how to level off the contents of measuring spoons and measuring cups to have accurate amounts, and they took this job very seriously.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Birthday Celebration!

We had a great day yesterday celebrating A's birthday! After breakfast we played with pegs and pegboards. The children made elaborate houses on their pegboards, and we had little "peg guys" who played and talked with each other. I don't often get on the floor and actually play with the kids, so this was really fun for me too! Later on we visited a few dear folks in a nursing home (more on that later) and then while A napped I finished making his cake. I wanted to make him a Pooh cake, without the $12 Pooh pan. The way it turned out was not exactly my vision, but I let the children decorate it and it was their vision, so that was good! Grandma and Grandpa C came over for dinner, as well as one auntie and a little cousin. It was so cute to watch A and know that he really "got it" this year. He felt very special!

Thank you Grandpa D and Grandma B! The puzzle with sound was a big hit! :-)

We gave him a child's CD player with 2 microphones attached. The microphones have now been in about 4 different mouths, so if you come over with small children you will definitely want to stay away from this CD player!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Happy Third Birthday A!!!!

Our "baby" is 3 today, the 21st. How can that be? I remember so clearly the day he was born. Sweet little man, you have been an immeasurable joy since the day we knew about you! You were so wanted, so longed for, and such an answer to prayer. From the get go you have been your own unique person, and it is a continual delight to discover who God has made you to be.

Here is a picture journal of the last 3 years. Happy Birthday sweet little man!!!

Notice the cross stitch in the lower left corner?? I haven't done a stitch since then!

18 hours and much agony later, we rejoiced that he was finally, safely here! A successful vbac - thank you Lord!

This one was a foreshadowing of all the reading yet to come!!

Snitching cookies! (smart boy - he figured out if he stood on the dishwasher he could reach the counter!)
Our baby is TWO!!

Now he's "graduated" to Moby Dick.

Sweet little man, may you always know how much you are loved.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Lego Ballista and Castle

There has been much lego building of late, and I am always amazed at the things our children think of to build. Here is the latest creation of our son G (the true lego fanatic of the family). It is a weapon similar to a large crossbow called a ballista, based on a design by Leonardo da Vinci. It really fires!

Then he decided to build a more traditional cannon as well and see which one would fire the farthest.

Here he is just after firing both of them (the ordnance was too fast for my camera!). Any guesses on which projectile traveled farthest?

Yes, the cannon traveled farther. But the cannon was much bigger. Next he plans to build them the same size and try this experiment again. Who says you can't do school with legos??
Meanwhile, his older sister was starting on this amazing castle.

Here is the front entrance up close. Their castles are always very well guarded!

Inside the castle there are many different areas, such as the stable area for the horses.

Here the blue knight and purple knight are having sword fighting practice.

Here is the "keep", the safest place in the castle and also the place that holds all the treasure. It has its own drawbridge.

And here is the hangman's noose for bad guys (hanging from blue beam) with the executioner dressed in black underneath. Fortunately for the bad guys, most of them seem to escape so I was assured the noose doesn't get used much.