Christmas 2011

Today the boys were having an argument- about where our Christmas tree was located the year Cohen got his first bike. They like to argue about thing like that- you know the things that really matter.  Anyway- the solution to ending the argument? Right here. Lucky for them I document just about everything so a simple trip to the archives of December 2008 revealed that Cohen was right and Rylan was wrong. 
So just in case a couple years from now I need to know some little piece of information about Christmas of's the rundown. 

We spent Christmas Eve with my dad- where Annika thoroughly enjoyed a singing and dancing snowman...

 The boys spent a lot of time with their pastels and paints the week before Christmas making gifts for their grandparents.

Thanks to Pinterest, I had plenty of options to give them. 

I absolutely loved all of their artwork and have put in orders for them to make me one as well.


This one in particular- I think turned out so nice. Cohen painted it. I can see a set of 4 with all the seasons represented on my wall.


This next one with the 4 trees was Lakin's. It is one of the first pieces he's ever done that he completely painted. He usually doesn't have the patience. 

He also made this snowman- which he enjoyed most because he got to use my special, fancy watercolors and not just the tempra or crayola watercolors. 


I also made some of the gifts this year. Starting with these Ribbon wands for some of the little girls in the family and a few for friends. 

Lakin asked for one he and Annika got one on Christmas morning.

And of course I made treats too....

Cookies and Cookie Dough balls.

Then it's Christmas night and everyone is asleep-


On Christmas morning here at our house- the kids wake up one by one and they come into our room and watch movies on Netflix on the computer until everyone is awake- or until we say it is okay to go wake the last sleepyhead. 

Then it's stockings and presents.


Some of this year's favorites?


Klutz books- pipe cleaner critters and monsters.

The pedometer. Now they don't have to share the one we had and can constantly one up each other in number of steps.


Cameras. My mom got them each their own REAL camera. They have taken so many pictures in the past week and tons of videos. 



Lakin and Annika got their own cowboy hats. Lakin has been wanting one since Cohen got his for his birthday.


Cohen had to show him how a real cowboy face is supposed to look.

And one of my favorites from my camera. I have a whole series- where she walked up to Cohen- who was working in a dot-to-dot book- sat down, climbed on his back and pushed his head down. But this one looks like she's sweet and hugging him and not at all like she was screeching and attacking him for fun. 


Merry Christmas!


Merry Christmas!

From It's A Boy's Life!


A Fairy, a Princess and a Little Girl's Birthday


My little girl turns one year old this Thursday


It hardly seems like a year has gone by since she joined our family. She is such a wonderful addition. Her personality is coming out so much these days and I can't wait to see who she becomes in the next year.


Since next weekend is Christmas, we celebrated this past Sunday. 
A small party with just family...and lots of balloons.

I got to make my first girly cake. I've had this idea for awhile and although it didn't turn out completely like the picture in my head, I still think it's pretty cute. It was also a little experimental- I didn't want to use any food coloring in it so with the exception of the black dots on the princess's eyes it is all naturally dyed. I used avocado for the green, strawberry for the pink, cocoa for the brown and lemon curd for the yellow.

Annika was a little unsure about the whole singing and cake thing.

She liked the cookie on top best of all. 

Eventually she got into the frosting and made a mess of herself. She didn't eat too much of it though. 

 She actually got into opening her gifts too...

Helping to unwrap and pull them out of the bags. 


Her doll collection is growing already!

 Happy [early] Birthday, Annika!


Fun. Life. Holidays.

 Miss Annika will be one in 12 days.  A couple of weeks ago she finally decided walking wasn't so bad. Still not her favorite mode of transportation, but she's getting there. 

We had a Christmas craft get together with friends. We made cookie mix in a jar. Which a couple kids cleverly gifted to each other so they could eat the cookies. We gave one to a friend and one to the mail carrier and one is earmarked for Santa. 

And painted gingerbread ornaments.  They smell really nice, Annika has to carry hers around and smell it at least a couple times a day.

And time capsule ornaments.

Annika's scrunchy face. This is a mellow, happy version. When she doesn't get her way she scrunches it up completely and pouts. Apparently she gets this from me. Leave it to Paul to point that out. He said she gets it from me and I turned and said she did not....accompanied by my own scrunched up face. Guess I proved his point....

Paul graduated yesterday. The first in his family.

 After the ceremony...

 Wearing Daddy's hat...


Can you tell who is turning into a Daddy's girl?

 We stopped for a Christmas tree on the way home.

We've gone to the same farm down the road from our house for the past 8 years. The boys already have asked about finding a tree farm in NC. 

Decorating at home

We have collected a ton of ornaments over the past 10 years. The tree is so full, but each one has a story and a memory attached to it and I can't leave any out. 

The boys have gotten into playing around with the webcam and all it's weird effects. It's like the house of mirrors distorting their faces. I like this effect though- 

Annika was napping during my attempt to get us all in one picture....

Now I just have to get every one happy, dress and smiling at my camera so I can get Christmas card pictures.