Saturday, November 29, 2008

My Michael is THREE!

Happy birthday to our sweet little three-year-old! We love you so much and are so blessed to have you in our family! A few things that we adore about you: your tender spirit, your inquisitive mind (SO many questions), your off-hand hilarious comments, the way you say your 'P's like "F"s (ie "Sfinach"), how you love to cuddle (before you run off to rough-n-tumble), your infectious laugh, the "grace" that you inherited from your mom, and the fact that you will always be our sweet, precious first-born son! We love you, big boy!

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Jon and I put the tree up while the kids napped on Friday. I loved seeing their faces when they saw it up.
If you are wondering why we only have lights on half the tree and no ornaments, it's because I got all the lights strung and realized one strand was bad. So the completed tree will be a future post.

Kid-sized tree

Jon suffered through the tree assembly process.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A Day of Thanks Giving

We gave thanks together with my sister Meredith and her family & The Scantlin Family. We were thankful to be able to celebrate the bounty that God has blessed us with, and to spend the day with family and friends.
At the table- Matt & Meredith, Brandy & Jerry, Jon (not pictured- me, Michael and Kate)

The girls were at the bar- Hannah, Erica, Olivia T, Olivia S, Abby
On the menu:
Turkey & Ham
Gravy & Stuffing
Mashed Potatoes
Sweet Potato Casserole
Mac & Cheese
Squash Casserole
Green Bean Bundles
Crescent Rolls & Apple Butter

For dessert- Apple Pie and Pumpkin Cheesecake with Coffee & Pumpkin Spice creamer
Thanks, Brandy, for the Starbucks Thanksgiving Blend! Yum!

Definitely a "good china" occasion! (minus Michael plastic plate there)

Then football and fellowship afterwards. Thanks for spending the day with us! We wish the rest of you could have joined us!!

Helping with Thanksgiving Dinner Prep

Michael wanted to watch and help as I was preparing for our big Thanksgiving meal on Thursday.
Here he is watching me prepare the turkey.

As I was peeling potatoes, Michael snatched a peeling and ate it raw! I told him they are nasty, but he chewed it up and swallowed. Then he reached for a second one, and that one must not have been as tasty as the first, as he spit it out and stopped eating them!

Member of the FPA (Future Plumbers of America)

Ever since I moved Michael to his Size 4 clothes, we have had a drooping pants problem. I guess I'm just going to have to switch to those adjustable waist pants, as those seem to stay up better.
It doesn't seem to stop him, though.

Almost gone!
(notice the "hotel" that Michael built. He is getting quite good at design and construction. Jon is so proud!)

Is that a tale growing?!

Puppy Love

Katie loves her new puppy that she got for her first birthday. She walks around either carrying her puppy or calling for her "buppy." Thank you, Nancy B! You always give the best gifts!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Naptime Mischief

Michael has been up to no good during nap time lately. I have found him doing quite a few naughty things to keep himself awake. He has gotten naked, taken his bed apart, relocated his mattress, hidden under his bed AND Katie's crib, painted the wall with hydrocortisone cream, and sundry other miscellaneous creative deeds. I guess he has the time to think of fun things while doing nothing in bed, and they must be well worth the inevitable discipline that comes from his misdeeds.
Hercules here lifted his mattress off his bed, and re-made his bed on the floor. What a crazy boy! (He looks really penitent in the picture, huh?)

Imaginary Brother

Some kids have imaginary friends, but my boy has an imaginary baby brother. He is feeding the baby cereal here in this picture.

He was so sweet with his "baby brother." Michael was "holding" him and saying "It's okay, baby" in a sweet, tender voice. He asks quite often for a baby brother, but he will not be getting one soon! :-) Maybe when he is 5.

Books on CD

I had forgotten about this set of 10 Scholastic books with accompanying audio CDs that I got at a garage sale this summer. Since Michael is really in to "reading" lately, I decided that he could learn to follow along with the CDs, and he has greatly enjoyed them.

Ms. Daredevil

Ever since Katie got over her fears of walking, she seems to have thrown all fears out the window! She climbs everything, and is pretty much up for anything. I had to put a gate up at the steps going upstairs because I was doing dishes and heard the "thunk thunk" of her finding her way back down the steps after scaling a few!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Teen Work Day

We got a group of teens from the Youth Group together and went to rake leaves for some church folks. It was C-O-L-D outside (26 degrees when we left), so we bundled up and had fun anyways. So now that you parents out there know that your teens can work hard, use that to your advantage at home and put 'em to work! :-)
Mass rakeage
It's amazing what 17 teens, 3 adults, and 2 kids can accomplish all at once!

We put all the leaves from our raked piles on big tarps,

Then we hauled them off into the woods and dumped them.

Of course, we had to do some leaf jumping as well!

Ryan was just hanging out, 'possom-style.

Michael going for a tarp ride.

What a difference!

Hard-working girls

Happy, warm Katie

And this is why they bring an RN along to youth activities. Look WAY up at the top of the tree (Don't be getting any ideas, Michael Andrew!)

Earth Mover

Michael is really in to moving large toys and furniture lately. I don't know why, but I know who will assist me next time I want to rearrange my living room!
Hauled in from the dining room

That is his tool bench in the nursery, carted from the play room. He also loves to wheel the Rubbermaid container of Duplo blocks all over the place.

And yes, I found him pushing his sister around while she was eating her lunch. Can't step away for a second...!

What a crazy boy!! (Don't worry, I DID intervene!)

Playing with Friends

I watched Summer & RJ this past Friday, and my kids loved it so much! Summer and RJ are very close to Michael and Katie's ages, and they played very well together. It's really a pleasure taking care of enjoyable, well-trained, well-behaved children.
Katie goes for a walk while RJ plays with cars.

Summer and Michael had a blast running around and chasing each other. Michael enjoyed being chased, and Summer like being the chaser. Their big giggles made me laugh all day!

On guard!

Our Favorite Part of the Day

When Daddy comes home!!
Group hug!!

and play time!!

Michael, The Tickle Bug

I absolutely adore this picture!

Michael continues the all-out tickle assault.

And I added this picture because I thought Katie looked especially cute.

Winter Roars In

It has been VERY cold here lately, and we have been staying inside a lot. The few times I have tried to bundle Michael up to go play outside, he goes out for about 3 minutes then complains that his nose is too cold and he wants to go back inside. The Farmer's Almanac says it will be a rough, snowy winter, so we will see if the farmer is right.
Anyways, we are thankful for a warm house and lots to do inside!
This was our first "snow" of the year, which consisted of light snow flurries that disappeared when they hit ground. I didn't even notice until Michael came up to me after he saw the flakes and asked if it was rain. We got to have an exciting lesson on snow, and he enjoyed watching it.

Katie was not too impressed with the snow, but came over for a peek anyways.

Katie can't move in her marshmallow-man coat plus many layers!

Michael prepares to go outside, though with all those layers might be finding it hard to stand up. :-) Don't mind my messy mud room there- I'm awaiting the installation of hooks for our winter coats, and am in the process of an organizational system for our recycling.

Busted Lip

Unfortunately for her, Kate has her mom's grace. She often has cuts and bruises on her face, arms, etc. She managed a nice lip-busting fall in the church nursery, and it opened up a time or two this week and would re-bleed. You're a tough girl, Miss Kate!

See that swollen upper lip? It's more pronounced when she smiles that big toothy grin.

Mischievous Little Boy Antics

Little boys are a ton of fun, however, I often don't understand them (or ALL boys for that matter). At least he keeps me amused!

My husband eats chocolate ice cream by the bucket full, and Michael thought it would be a great toy. So I cleaned it for him, and he made it into a fashionable hat.

Uh Oh! This is what happens when it get a little too quiet in the kids' room!

Michael manages to make an incredible mess with just about anything. THIS particular hand washing came because I left the butter out on the counter.

See that big chunk missing. He ate it straight out of the container. This reminds me of Michael's cousin Nathan, a fellow butter-lover!

And that crazy balloon that I brought home for Michael the last time Jon & I went out. He absolutely loves it, and thinks of all sorts of imaginative games to play with this balloon.