Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Polar Express 2012

Last night we enjoyed our library's annual reading of The Polar Express.  The kids get to go in their pajamas, which just adds to the fun!  This year we went with friends and had a great time. :)  The conductor gave them their tickets and then they chose their seats...
 After the reading, they got to do a Christmas craft.
Next there was hot chocolate and cookies.
And of course, our traditional picture with the conductor!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Just the girls

I had a bunch of errands to run today and David wanted to stay home...so I invited Abigail for a "girl time" afternoon.  We did mundane things like an oil change in the van and picking up milk at the store...but we also managed to squeeze in some fun stuff!
Fortunately for us, I needed a few things from Joann Fabrics.  We not only got the stuff on my list, but we also stopped to "ooh" and "ahh" over every sparkly fabric they had and come up with ideas for how we would use every other pretty fabric we saw.
I surprised Abigail with a stop at the American Girl store for some window shopping.  Thankfully, Abigail totally gets the idea of window shopping and so both of us have tons of fun just looking (and getting ideas for sewing projects, too!).  It just so happened that, while we were there, they were offering a free craft to advertise for the newest AG doll, so Abigail got to make her own paper bonnet like Caroline's.
After our last couple of errands, we got a special treat of dinner at Bobby G's (they have the best Chicago-style food we've found outside of Chicago).  We ate ours at the restaurant and then brought some home to the guys for their dinner.
It was wonderful to spend some one-on-one time together.  Like Abigail said a couple of times today, "I'm so glad we could have special girl time.  I mean, we love Daddy and David, and we like to be with them, but sometimes it's nice to be just girls." :)

Friday, November 09, 2012

Frosty fall mornings

As is typical at this time of year, our near-the-mountains climate has been giving us warm, sunny days and cold, frosty mornings.  Yesterday and today we woke up to 32 degrees and a hard frost.
The cooler temperatures combined with some rainy weather earlier this week made for a couple of tuck-in-your-nose-and-tail kind of days for all of us!
Our boy thoroughly enjoys decking out in camouflage and racing around the yard evading capture by enemies.  He is convinced that I really do have trouble seeing him when he's "sneaking" around in his camo...so he makes loud tweeting noises from behind the trees so that I know he's out there somewhere.  (I have not pointed out to him that the fluorescent green and orange gun aimed at me tends to give away his position!)  He likes to have an audience...even if it's just Mom looking out from the deck. :)
The changing of the seasons seems to trigger particularly monster-y behavior in the cats...we came home from church on Wednesday night to this view of a mildly shamefaced Mindy sitting in the tangled midst of two of my knitting projects!
Today I let the kids come to school in their pajamas (a special treat).  Here they are during science class, racing to see who could answer the geology questions first.
Another week down -- 42% of our school year complete -- and life races on!

Monday, November 05, 2012

Babies don't keep...

Sometimes we go through a spell when it seems like the kids are growing up measurably every single day.  My little girl is such a young lady in her lovely dress (a hand-me-down from my younger cousin -- Abigail was very happy to be wearing Alicia's dress!).
Not too fast, my babies...let me savor every day...

Abigail's offertory

Yesterday Abigail and her piano teacher played a duet in church.  Look at that left hand go! :)

Battling the basement

I am on a seemingly never-ending quest to conquer the basement...and keep it that way!  It seems like every time I spend several days getting it all organized, the basement-sprites spend the next year turning it back into chaos again.  This time I am determined to conquer it once and for all.  To help with that, Bruce was willing to building some shelves for me (and for only half of the cost of ready-made shelves).  He built me these this past weekend and I am so excited!

Mindy was the self-appointed supervisor, keeper of the screws, and inspector throughout the entire project.  Notice that she shows up in every picture!
Clutter be gone!!! (...please!)

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Blustery day adventures

On a cold, blustery day, what better activity than to try to build a tent in the backyard, right?!  That's what David thought, so he and Abigail set out with a tarp, some PVC pipe, a mallet, and some tent stakes...and they did it!  They felt very powerful as they crawled out of the noisy, cold wind and into their little haven of warmth and quiet. :)  This week, our autumn is feeling quite winter-ish!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Leaves are falling down...

 ...and my kids are growing up, seemingly as fast as the leaves go from tree to ground!
 Our princess
Our boy young man
Flashback to October 2005...see what I mean?!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Apple season!

It's that time of year again...Karen and I have been making the trek to north Georgia at apple time for years now, but this year we added to the caravan!  Two of our other friends went with us and we had a grand old time.
 The annual watching of the fried apple pie making
Picking seconds for applesauce...almost 200 lbs between us!
An apple bin full of cute kids
Getting my snuggles in :) (Danielle's daughter Isabelle)
 Abigail and Noah
 A wagonful of our pumpkins!
 The newest pumpkin in the patch (Karen's new baby)

Monday, October 08, 2012

Girl-fun Monday

Most of my pictures today are girl-moments...even the cat!

Here is our sweet Mindy holding my hand.  She doesn't like to snuggle up close, but she often reaches out a paw to "hold" our hand or arm while she naps.  I dare anyone to try resisting this feline...she is just too loveable to resist!
On the way to a special event tonight, Abigail and I just happened to swing by Karen's for a snuggle with Adel. :)  She's so rosy and dimply and cuddly!
Afterwards, Abigail and I headed to the library for a special Kirsten (American Girl) party for 8-13 year old girls.  They had snacks and crafts common to Kirsten's time period (Swedish immigrant to Minnesota in the 1800s) as well as a skit derived from the Kirsten books and performed by teenaged volunteers.  Abigail had a wonderful time and even got a special take-home packet filled with AG goodies!  Here she is with Ms. Vicki, the "library lady" who coordinated the event for the girls.
David made it into this picture: our annual "wouldn't their grandmas like to snuggle them in these pajamas" picture. :)  Cold weather has arrived -- at least for now -- and we were all excited to pull out the flannel pajamas.  Indeed, they are snuggly...I tested them. :)

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Our autumn tradition

Today we made our annual trek to Burt's Farm for pictures, a hayride, and our first taste of apple cider for the season.  The weather was perfect -- mostly sunny with a cool enough breeze to feel like fall!  We had a wonderful time, as always...

NY comes to NC

My mother-in-law's only sister is in NC visiting my in-laws for a week, so we made a trip up there yesterday to see her.  It's much easier to make the drive to NC than it is to Buffalo, NY. :)

We had a wonderful visit with lots of chatting and laughing.  We also visited the Carl Sandburg Home, a 245-acre farm where the Sandburgs lived while he wrote and she raised prizewinning goats.  It is run by the National Park Service today, and they keep a herd of about 25 goats now; we enjoyed a walk around the beautiful farm in gorgeous fall weather, with leaves starting to change color and mountains all around us.

We just happened to get there at the goats' dinner time, so the kids got to be part of the action!
Two kids having a conversation
Isn't it cute?  This is one of a set of triplets.
A breathtaking morning glory twining its way up the main house
The kids playing on the big rock where Carl Sandburg often sat to get inspired (when I started to take this picture, the kids were sitting side by side...then David started moving again and never stopped!)
Our group  (From left, Dad, Mom, Aunt Carol)
We finished off the day at Hot Dog World, which is always a treat.  David managed to finish off a whole footlong chili dog but his mother didn't capture a picture of his moment of triumph...oh well!  The last three bites were accomplished by sheer will and accompanied by much moaning. :)  We had a wonderful day and are so glad we got to spend it together!