Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas boat ride

On Monday night my FIL rented a boat and we went on a moonlight ride around Naples Island. We did the same thing last year, and the homes are always really cute and decorated. The kids loved it this year. Last year was a little cooler and Addie wasn't really walking yet and I didn't want her crawling around the boat floor so it was more work to keep her happy. This year they were so excited. It was still about 65 degrees when we got there and we all had a great time. We took dinner and treats on with us and cruised around for about two hours. It was beautiful.

Our own little Christmas Day.

We'll be traveling to Utah for Christmas. We're still trying to figure out how to make Christmas-away-from-home work in the coming years. Because, as much as I like being in Utah with family, I like to wake up with my kids in our own home on Christmas morning. Maybe I'll have to start convincing family to come to us. But anyway, no need to look so far ahead right now. This year, this is what worked. I didn't want to pack all the gifts to Utah, just to repack them (plus more) to bring home. Plus, the kids got a couple things that I'm hoping will keep them entertained on the drive.

So Sunday the 15th was Christmas for us, and we really enjoyed it! Paul and I commented that it's nice to have the gift stuff done, but still have Christmasy stuff to look forward to. 

On "Christmas Eve" we went to Rick's Drive-in for dinner because its always done up all festive. 

After dinner we made cookies for Santa. 
Paul text Santa before bedtime (ahem, his dad, ahem) to see if Garrett could remind him that we were hoping he would come early this year. Garrett had a great time talking to Santa. Addie on the other hand loves saying that she sat on his lap, hugged him, talked to him, etc.) but when it comes to actually doing it, she'll pass. 

We're simplifying Christmases around here and budgeting, and I think it's a good thing. We're doing 5 gifts each: Want, Need, Wear, Read. And the one I added, Homemade. 

For "want" they both got Leap Frog electronic devices. They never said they "wanted" those. But they want our phones and iPads way too often, so we did some research and picked what we thought would be fun and educational. 

For "need" they both got footie pajamas. It could have worked for wear too. But they really needed jammies. 

For "wear" they got long pants and fleece pullovers. We're not very Utah ready, so we got a warm outfit for them. 

For "read" we got Disney look and find books. Can't really read them, but G got one for his birthday and they both love it. It's like Where's Waldo, but you find more things on each page.

And for "homemade" I refinished my
old dollhouse for Addie, and bought IKEA blocks and painted them for Garrett. A's was more work and a bigger deal, but as I predicted, they both love both gifts and share pretty well so far. 

We did stockings as well. But those were pretty practical too. Underwear, socks, tooth brushes. And a few fun little things that are probably broken now. As they were opening, I realized it was pretty boring because the Leap Frogs weren't hooked up yet, so there was nothing really to play with as they opened. But they're happy now. 

Here are the before and after pictures of the homemade gifts. 

I made a festive breakfast that morning too. I took everyone's suggestions and granted all the requests. It was like IHOP in my kitchen. 

I made: pancakes with whip cream and blueberries, bacon, eggs, hash browns, hot chocolate with whip cream and sprinkles, bananas and strawberries shaped like a candy cane, tangerine snowmen, and we had sparkling grape juice and orange juice too.

It was a fun day. And it's fun that we still have a vacation and actual Christmas to look forward to.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

According to the kids

Kids say:

Me: It's almost Lulus birthday.
G: no it's almost DADS birthday!
(This was before Paul and Addie's birthdays. He's learned the order really well.)

I can't decide if this is appropriate or not, but it was cute, and Garrett doesn't really know better yet. When my nephew William was born, Garrett wasn't talking much and Addie wasn't at all. But they'd both put their index finger along the bottom of their nose, above there lip (like the oxygen tube) to let us know they knew who he was, or that they wanted to see him. This past Halloween Garrett had the corner of his bandana twisted up and he put it up to his lip under his nose and said,  "Mom! Take a picture! I'm baby Will!" 

We often have to remind Garrett to finish eating before going on to something else and he's started picking up on our eating advice. Paul was hurrying through a mean and G said, 
"dad, swallow that bite first." Another time Paul and I were talking during dinner and Garrett shouted, "mom, focus!"

Everyday when Paul gets home from work the kids both excitedly ask, "Done workin'?"

Me: Addie who should we go see for Christmas?
Addie: Baby Will...and Tow Mater. 

G was chasing Addie swinging a coat at her. 
Me: Garrett, what are you doing?
G: I'm playing hitting. 
Me: You're playing hitting? That sounds like a safe game. 
G: yeah, it's a safe game. 

G: Addie don't do that! You're making me crazy!

Walking to our car from a store, G was touching each car as we walked by.
Me: don't do that bud, people don't want your finger prints on their cars. 
G: (keeps touching every car) mom, you're crazy. 

The two of them are very mischievous together. When Garrett had been told
not to do something, he whispers to Addie to try and get her to do it. And she almost always whispers back, "ok" and then does it. I used to get mad at her for doing what he was doing, but then I caught on, and now he still gets in trouble for making her do stuff I've told him not to do. He hasn't learned yet though. 

They are both constantly telling me things are 'so cute' or 'adorable.'

No matter when the last time was that G used the bathroom, if I ever tell him to try and go, he says, "I went last night."

Addie: sneezes
Me: bless you!
G: (wipes his arm from Addie's sneeze) and says: Eww, you just blessed on me. 

Addie puts on new Jammie's and goes to G and says, "Garrett, look at me." Garrett says, "'re very pretty."

G: mom that dinosaur has a lady friend. 
Me: hmm, do you have a lady friend? 
G: no. I have a mama lady friend.

Addie walks around randomly patting her belly saying, "oh ho ho, Merry Chris trees."

Garrett walks around randomly patting his belly saying, "ho ho ho, Very Christmas."

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The "guys" party

Paul has a group of guy friends here. (All pretty close by except one who's out of state.) He calls them "the guys" I call them "the home school kids". (And I tease them about it any chance I get.) We hardly ever see each other but we try to plan something a couple of times a year. This was the first time we've had a Christmas party and I hope it becomes a yearly thing because it was really fun. And in the next week or so, the one out of state will be the only one without kids, and it's fun seeing our kids play together.

We had the party in the mortuary reception room. We had dinner, kid activities, and a white elephant gift exchange. 

My kiddos before the party. 
The reindeer food bar. I made the food. (Oats, crushed cookies, cocoa and sugar, colored sugar, round sprinkles, and edible glitter.) And I found free printables on Pinterest to stick on the jars. 

We decorated cookies.

We colored and made crafts.

The decor. 

The kids.

Rules for the gift exchange by Paul. And why wouldn't we pull our numbers from an urn??

The whole group! (Minus the two out of state. And there's a baby in a stroller hidden behind us.)