Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Holiday Crazies

Ah... finally a quiet moment.  I love the holidays, but it's always nice when it's all over and life can start getting back to what we know it to be.

For the holidays this year, my parents came out to visit.  My mom came for a week for Ali's birthday and Christmas, and my dad was here for 3 weeks.  The kids had a blast being spoiled and using Papa as a jungle gym to climb all over.

We had a party for Ali down at my in-law's during our family Christmas party, then had another special day for her here at home on her actual birthday.  This girl cracks me up.  Her facial expressions as she opened her presents were hysterical.  Everything she opened got an audible, "Oh!"

And then if it was really cute, she did a head tilt like this:

I came across Amy Butler's Big Nap Pillow while I was looking for something to do for Ali for her birthday and I knew she'd love it.  Unfortunately, you can't buy the pattern for it anymore, so my friend Cindy was kind enough to help me create one so I could make this monster flower pillow for her.  I'm really happy with how it turned out and even happier that Ali likes it and loves to lay on it every day.  So does Cade.  The great thing is, it's big enough for both of them!

So, of course, next was Christmas.  We tried talking my parents into only getting the kids 2 or 3 really meaningful gifts, but maybe they thought we said 23?  Anyway, they had plenty to open and plenty of fun things to play with.  

Within our own little family we decided to draw names.  With Tyler being in school and working, money was much tighter this year than others and so we made the rule that the gift you gave had to be something you made.  

Ali made a little pillow for Tyler that he can take in the car and use for naps.  Ok, so she didn't make the whole thing by herself.  But she picked out the colors and stuffed the pillow.

Tyler helped Cade paint a board and put his hand prints on it.  I love that kind of stuff and I should have taken a picture of it, dang it.  Oh, well.  Cade was very excited to give it to me and I'm very excited to hang it up in my room.  (I'm not sure why he likes to gives kisses on the nose, but that's just what he does.)

Tyler made a couple of guns for Cade.  His dad helped him make the pistol and my dad drew the rifle pattern for him.  The wood was cured by his dad, so it's fun there's a lot of "story" to the guns.  I like that they don't actually shoot anything.

Almost every night after bath time, Ali likes to run around with her towel on like a cape and yell, "Super Ali!"  so I decided to make her a real "Super Ali" cape.  So far, Cade likes her to wear it more than she likes to, but maybe one day she'll learn to appreciate it.

Of course, no Christmastime would be complete without treats.  On Christmas day I think the only thing Ali had to eat was chocolate.  In fact, she fell asleep by 7:00 that night after wearing herself out with blood-curdling cries of, "I WANT CHOCOLATE!!!" for a half hour.

A few days before Christmas, we made sugar cookies.

I love that my kids run and get their aprons on when it's time to cook.  I love even more that Cade wears his chef hat even though it's too small for him and doesn't snap in the back like it used to.

Oh, yeah.  Check out those sprinkles.  

Another day while we finished up some shopping, my mom stayed home with the kids and made some of those white chocolate suckers with them.  I'm not sure what Cade is doing.  Maybe comparing which Santa sucker is better.  Ali is smiling like that because she's about to take a bite out of each one of those huge snowflakes to claim them both as her own.

Probably the last "note-worthy" thing we did during this holiday break was go up to Edgefield, SC to the Hickory Hills dairy farm.  We bought some of their milk a while back and have since wanted to go up and see the farm.  Since Tyler had a WONDERFUL break from school, we finally were able to do it.  They took us in to see the calves that were maybe only a month old or so.  Did you know that calves have no top teeth?  Maybe cows in general... I can't remember.  So the kids stuck their fingers right there in the calves' mouths since they couldn't bite them.  I was holding the camera, so that's my excuse for not doing it.  Maybe next time.

After we saw the calves, we saw where they milk the cows, what they eat and where they process and bottle the milk for selling.  It was really educational and fun for Tyler and me.  Cade just kept asking when we were going to see the big cows.  Unfortunately, they didn't take us out to the fields to see the big cows - we just saw them as we were driving in.  So, as we left, we stopped and let Cade see the big cows.  Probably the best part of the tour was the end when they gave each of us our own bottle of chocolate milk.  It was the BEST chocolate milk I've ever tasted.  Yum.

For New Year's Eve Tyler had to work until 10:30, so we didn't do much.  As most of you know, we only have our TV hooked up to watch movies and every year it's a big ordeal to try and find somewhere to watch the ball drop.  This year we ended up going out and buying an antennae and converter box thinking it would be a good idea.  We ended up watching an episode or 2 of "Psych" on DVD that my dad got us for Christmas, pausing it for 5 minutes while we watched the ball drop, then finished our show and went to bed.  We ended up taking the antennae and converter box back the next day.  We felt bad "renting" the stuff for the night, but really, that's the only night of the year we wish we had regular TV like everybody else.

So, all in all, it was a pretty fun holiday.  Thanks for everything from everyone.  We love you all!!


Pyne Fam on January 7, 2010 at 8:52 AM said...

I love the homemade gifts! Now I totally want some Chocolate milk!

Jay and Sherrie on January 7, 2010 at 3:51 PM said...

Fun times! It looks like you guys had a blast. That little girl is so adorable.

Hannah on January 8, 2010 at 6:32 PM said...

Hey your house sounds like tv. I've decided there isn't anything on tv worth watching anymore so I don't miss it much.

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