Thursday, November 22, 2012


Today I'm especially thankful for family.

Thankful for the one I was born in.  Thankful for the one I married into.  Thankful for the one that Trevor and I have created together.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Meeting Santa

Believe it or not, our kids haven't ever sat on Santa's lap to tell him what they want for Christmas.  We don't live near a mall where they would have the opportunity, and in the past our church Christmas party has been more centered around Christ and they haven't had Santa so they missed the chance then too.

This year there was a huge 2-day Christmas craft & boutique in town.  Santa was making an appearance on the second day.  I was SO excited about seeing our kids on Santa's lap! 

Santa was seated in his rocking chair, surrounded by Christmas trees, Mrs. Claus, and even a little elf passing our mini-candy canes.  It was so fun.  I asked Ryder if he wanted to go see Santa and he said yes.  Trevor was holding Brody and asking him if he wanted to see Santa and he said a flat no.  Some serious convincing was going to have to happen.  Trevor was so patient and telling him he would have to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas so that he would know what to bring.  Brody's smart little self said, "How about you just go tell him, Daddy?"

Sometimes I get so frustrated with Brody being afraid and timid.  I worry about him missing out on some of the most fun things in life because he is so cautious.  Then my heart softens and I really feel for him, because I was the same exact way as a kid.  Always the typical oldest child.  Played it safe.  Never did anything that would or could cause harm.  Didn't disobey because I hated letting my mom down.  I totally get it.  However, we still push him a little outside of his comfort zone at times when it comes to things he really shouldn't miss out on.

Finally, when I got in line with Ryder, Brody and Trevor did too.  Ryder was just intently watching Santa.  I think he was more in line for the candy, but he wasn't acting afraid.  Trevor had knelt down and was talking to Brody saying that Ry-ry was going to go sit on Santa's lap and so he could too.  Brody said, "How about....Ryder just tells Santa for me."  He really wasn't going to do it.

We were at the front of the line, with only one kid in front of us and Trevor said, "You know Ryder is going to freak out, right?"  Um, yeah.  I was totally banking on that.  He was fine in line and everything, but I knew the moment he was placed on Santa's lap we were going to have a problem.  It may sound mean, but I wanted him to cry.  What's childhood without a picture of you screaming on Santa Claus's lap?

At some point Trevor somehow convinced Brody to at least go STAND by Santa.  We got Ry up there and the crying started while Brody just stood and stared and I think tried to say what he wanted.  Then Mrs. Claus made the big mistake of putting Brody on her lap.  HAHA!  It was hilarious.  Ryder red-faced and crying on Santa, and Brody lip-quivering trying not to cry on Mrs. Claus.

Brody told Santa at some point that he wanted a firetruck and Santa said he would have the elves get working on that.  Then they were given candy canes, and all freak out was forgotten. 

And I got my much wanted and very classic childhood memory of the boys on my camera.  Priceless!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

All things Halloween

The week of Halloween this year was also the first week of basketball.  At our house that means Trevor puts on his coaching cap and I don the single mom cap.  Okay, that's a bit dramatic....maybe.  What it really entails is our life and our schedules revolving around practice and game times. 

Monday ended up being the best time to carve pumpkins.  I usually like to wait as long as possible so that they aren't shriveled by the time Halloween night rolls around.  Practice was going to be out earlier this night so after Trevor came home, and we ate, it was time to get busy turning our pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns.

Brody was so ready.  He'd been telling me for a week or so just what kind of face he wanted on his.  Their may have been a few modifications we made to his original idea, but he was happy with the end result.

We stripped the boys down to their respective diapers and underwear and let the mess ensue.  And ensue it did.  Seeds, and pumpkins guts were everywhere!  So was that lovely smell only 4 open pumpkins can make.  Ry kept scooping out more and more stuff and each time would scrunch his little face and say, "EEEWW!  YUCKY!"  But did the gross-ness slow him down?  Absolutely not.

Halfway through our pumpkin process our home teachers stopped by unexpectedly.  I think Brody answering the door in his undies, may have made them a little uncomfortable, but what do you do?  They just dropped off some cupcakes.  It was a great treat, and provided a little 'break' for our hard-working carvers.  Chocolate cake crumbs mixed in really well with all the rest of the crap on our floor too.

When all was said and done Trevor made his old stand-by pumpkin that says Trick or Treat, mine had a moon and stars (also a classic I've done many times), Brody's was a true jack-o-lantern with a cute face, and Ryder had a Mickey Mouse head."  Success.

Halloween arrived on Wednesday and we participated in the annual Halloween parade.  I have always somehow ended up one of the very last stragglers in the bunch so I decided to bring our little double stroller and push the boys to make it go quicker.  Trevor got home from work just in time to go with us.  Each boy got a balloon and enjoyed the ride. 

Lots of kids and their parents were walking the parade route and I soon saw some of my cousins with their kids.  Trevor and I have a niece and 2 nephews that we rarely see, so I always say if my kids are to have cousins to play with and grow up with, I have to rely on my cousins kids.  I jumped on the opportunity to get a picture of all the ones that were there.  I believe on my mom's side of the family there are 26 great-grandkids and I saw that I was going to be able to get a picture with my 2 boys, Julie's 3 girls, and Jaymi's 4 kids.  What I didn't know was that there my other cousin Ginee was there with her 3 so we missed them.  Either way, it was really fun to see all these little cousins together!

 After the photo 'session' (because that's what it seemed like trying to get all of them just to look in the same direction), we continued on our journey.  Brody and Ryder waved to cars passing by and those parked along the route watching.  My mom even looped around twice so that they could see her more than once.  It lets them wear their costumes even longer, and makes the day a little more special.  Doughnuts were offered at the end but we skipped it knowing all the junk that the kids would get later.  We did stop into Trevor's mom's office and showed the boys off in their costumes to all the ladies she works with.  They were a hit!  To say the least...

We headed home and while I made a yummy dinner of french bread pizza and caramel apple cider, Trevor took the boys trick or treating.  I decided since we only take them to a few houses anyway, that I'd stay home and answer the door for our few trick-or-treaters as well as make dinner.  This year we had a whopping 20 kids!  I always want more to come, so maybe next year it'll be even better.  A few kids commented on how much they loved our jack-o-lanterns too.

Brody and Ryder came home with far more candy then necessary (like usual).  The few houses they go to, tend to give them more then once piece of candy....usually closer to one handful..

Halloween was a blast for the kids.  They were such cute little pumpkins.  I love the holidays with little kids!