Sunday, December 30, 2012

Excuse This House

I just saw this poem on Facebook and had to "steal" it.  It explains my thoughts and feelings right now!

Excuse This House
Some houses try to hide the fact
That children shelter there.
Ours boasts of it quite openly,
The signs are every where.

For smears are on the windows,
Little smudges on the doors;
I should apologize I guess
For toys strewn on the floor.

But I sat down with the children
And we played and laughed and read,
And if the doorbell doesn't shine,
Their eyes will shine instead.

For when at times I'm forced to
Choose the one job or the other,
I want to be a housewife...
But first I'll be a mother.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Princess Birthday Girl

I cannot believe I didn't even post about Anna's birthday.  I am feeling like a terrible mother!

We have been so busy with parties both birthday and Christmas as well was welcoming a new baby to the family and celebrating an early Christmas with my parents, not to mention going to a couple basketball games in between.  I know that was a run-on sentence but that is how I've felt the days have been.  I have been staying up late finishing the wrapping or cleaning up after the day.  The kids have been out of school all week and I'll admit I am in my pajamas til noon most days.  We are trying to stay out of public places to prevent any bugs that may be out there since we are going to see Natalie on Christmas.  And, I will admit, after the events in Newtown, CT, I like being able to lay eyes on my kids throughout the day. Normally, events like this do not shake me like this one has.  I hate when the event happens but usually move on, praying for those who have gone through something terrible yet somehow there are quite a few more thoughts and feelings that go into this one for me.  That could be a post on it's own.

The Princess Birthday Girl got a week long celebration!  We had her party on the 9th with a few friends from school and it was so much fun.  We decorated wands, had a "Berry Hunt" like Princess Aurora to find their favors, played Pinned the Tiara on Rapunzel, ate royal snacks and cupcakes and opened gifts.  Anna had a fabulous time and loved having her little friends here to play with.  Then, on the 12th, I took cookies to school to celebrate and that was so fun too.  She enjoyed the attention but only because Kyle stole some of it!  Anna's teacher was hugging on her while they were singing and Kyle jumped up out of my lap and ran to Anna and fell into her lap with a big hug.  She was just grinning ear to ear at being so loved.  Kyle even made it into the class photo that they take for every child's birthday!  For her actual birthday, the 13th, she had her Christmas program that morning.  My newly retired mom (yesssss!) was able to come up and keep Kyle for the day so that we could focus just on Anna.  It was so nice!!  She was very nervous for her program, licking her lips and rubbing her ear, two trademark Anna habits.  No tears though and then we had a little Christmas party in her room.  We cut it short though and stole her away to the American Girl doll store.  Just as exciting for me as for her no doubt.  She has been wanting "Julie" and didn't waiver much throughout the past months.  She was very excited when we arrived and went straight to the display of the dolls with Julie in it.  I asked her more than once if she wanted to look at any of the other dolls to make sure but she said she was sure!  So far, she has done an excellent job of caring for her doll.  I am proud of her and she has taken the role of "mommy" on very well.

Anna is a typical girl and soaks up every birthday moment.  I know in the future having a birthday so close to Christmas may diminish the excitement but this year was not that year.  If anything, I believe that it has made her more excited!  These past four years have gone by oh so quickly.  It is hard for be to grasp that she already four, especially watching Justin's sister experience everything on the same time table as we did.  I keep looking back at pictures of Anna four years ago when she was so tiny and our little Christmas baby and wondering how it all just flew past me.  I am trying to really focus on remembering those two weeks before she got sick.  Sometimes I feel as though that time didn't exist and we went from the day she came home to the 29th.  However, lots of sweet memories were made during those two weeks.  I am living a little vicariously through Kelly and little Natalie (who was born on the 16th and everyone did beautifully).

Anna LOVED all of her birthday week and remains quite the princess.  I will blog more on her little (big) personality after her check-up, which yes, I changed from the 17th to the 7th of January because I didn't want her "catching" anything between the 17th and Christmas.  OCD, a little.  Overprotective, maybe.  Loved a lot, absolutely!!

I promise to post pictures of all of this at some point.  We are headed to Charlotte to see my side of the family tomorrow and then will return for Christmas madness!  The kids are so pumped, I am having trouble containing their energy.

Thanks for reading about our birthday girl!!!  Have a very Merry Christmas!

 Practicing for "Pin the Tiara"
 Princess friends.
 Party set up.
 We had a "Berry Hunt" and the girls found their favors. 
 Not enjoying the singing!

 Kyle thought he needed to get involved.

 These pictures are from school.  I just took some chocolate chip cookies the day before her birthday to celebrate with the whole class.  She was so shy when we sang to her.  Kyle, on the other hand, kept running to her and falling into her lap to hug her!
 Here he is in on the class picture!
 ON her birthday, the 13th we went to the American Girl Doll store so she could choose her doll and have lunch.  She was a little overwhelmed but LOVED picking out Julie.
 Having lunch with Julie.

 Back at home that evening and again not liking the singing!  But, a cupcake made it all better.  I threw these together at the last minute so that we could all have a little more sugar to enjoy!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Christmas Ramblings

I feel as though Thanksgiving was quite some time ago!  We are now decorated for Christmas, have most of our shopping done, need to wrap everything but first must get through a birthday party tomorrow!  I still haven't figured out the whole picture thing on here and like I said I probably won't until after the holidays.  You will all then have to endure a huge picture release!!  Get ready.

This time of year is so busy and wonderful for most people I think.  Especially those with little kids.  I was just in the kitchen keeping an eye on some strawberry cupcakes when I thought I would write something and then I decided to pick up my computer and move in to the family room so I could sit by the tree.  We got a beautiful tree that is at least 10 feet tall and I spent three hours with just the lights so, I thought I should enjoy it.  I just thought I would write a little bit about each of the children and what they are like this Christmas season.

Brice- I believe he has figured the Santa thing out and has let on to this with only me.  He told me not to say anything to Justin because he knows it would break Justin's heart.  He did go willingly though to sit on the big guy's "lap", ended up being his actual chair because Kyle was having nothing to do with that stranger!  Brice is making our gifts this year and I feel honored that mine was the first to be finished and wrapped and placed under the tree.  Sometimes I feel as though Brice prefers Justin for anything and everything but this reminded me that he is my firstborn and he knows it!  His heart is so big and generous and always has been.  He loved helping me decorate this year and would not let me put out a single one of my Nutcrackers.  He also loved bossing Anna around but I guess that comes with the territory of being the oldest sibling.  For Christmas, he wants all things Harry Potter.  And a few other things.  Brice has always been older than his years and while sometimes I feel like I missed his childhood, I have to remind myself that Brice, himself missed childhood!  I also have to remind him sometimes that he is indeed a child and not a parent.  He is so excited to share our traditions with the other two and it just makes my heart smile!

Anna-  Oh, Anna.  This phrase is said by me over and over throughout the day in different contexts and tones.  She has really matured in the last six months and I see a girl there, not a little girl but a young girl.  She will turn four on Thursday and I am having trouble grasping this.  Just tonight we were at Brice's basketball game and walking out, I looked at her run ahead of me and remembered being at that same gym the day we had her 2nd birthday party.  It seems as though it was yesterday and those two years flew by in a blink.  Her vocabulary is changing and she is using bigger words and structuring her sentences differently.  She asks questions non-stop.  I am talking probably one hundred questions a day, possibly twice that.  Her mind is constantly going and she is trying to wrap her mind around baby Jesus being born outside and placed in hay and then the thought of Santa coming down our chimney and don't even get started on how he is going to get back up the chimney.  At the mention of her birthday and/or Christmas, her little face just lights up and she gets a big grin on her face and says in a squeal, "I'm soooo excited!!!".  As you should be little girl, this is going to be an awesome year!  She is becoming more caring and understanding the importance of giving and that Christmas is about love.  She has watched "The Grinch" about ten times and asks half of her questions then but always at the end, "Is this when he knows Christmas is love?".  And her little voice just makes me want to squeeze the cuteness out of her!  I could go on and on about her and probably will on her actual birthday. :)  Her Christmas wishes include a "ballerina" house (doll house), a Barbie and Prince Eric (from The Little Mermaid).  While singing to her tonight, she stopped me and said, "Is Santa coming tonight?"  "No" I answered. "Well, then will you let me know when it's going to be that night?".  As if the night would just sneak up on her!

Kyle- While it has been hard to keep up with this little dude, he is so precious to look at, especially when gazing up at the tree.  We put the less treasured ornaments at the bottom of the tree and he will touch them while saying, "Ahhht, ahht".  As in, "Ahht, don't you do that!".  He also likes to point at the nutcrackers and say, "cra-cuh".  Overall, he has been very good with all the ornaments and has thoroughly enjoyed the lights everywhere.  The sweetest memory I will have of him this year though is at bedtime.  After stories are read and books put in his basket, I put him up on my shoulder or cradled in my arms.  He has his blankets (na-ket) and puts his finger in his mouth and I sing "Silent Night" or "Away in a a Manger" to him and he looks at me with the calmest eyes and I can't get enough.  I could stay in there all night singing to him.  Then I put him in the crib and rub his head and cheek and he snuggles himself up.  My cup runneth over with that sweet little boy.

So, I think that is all for tonight.  Need to go work on the cupcakes a little bit and get some rest.  I am anticipating the arrival of a little girl named Natalie soon.  Justin's sister is due the 17th, however, all signs are pointing to before then.  We shall see.  I can't wait!!!  On to Anna's birthday party, maybe Natalie's too!

 Daddy hammers...
 ...Kyle hammers