Friday, December 28, 2012


I was thinking we'd have a fairly low-key, relaxing Christmas Eve, since we didn't need to leave until around 3:30 to go to my brother's, but I basically spent most of the day cooking--first breakfast, then some sides and a dessert for the next day.  Anyway, we spent Christmas Eve at my brother's and got home around 11:00, then I spent the next two hours putting things away and stuffing stockings.

The girls with their 2nd cousins Taylor and Skyler

Uncle/Grandpa Keith reading the Christmas Story

My 28-year-old niece is a big Bieber fan and wrapped my gift in Bieber wrapping.  Too funny.

The girls slept in until around 9:00 Christmas morning--Santa's visit having no affect on their ability to sleep.  We opened stockings, had a nice breakfast and then we opened the gifts that were just to each other.
Barbie Hairtastic Color Design Studio from Santa.  Olivia got a cake pop maker from Santa, but then my friend gave me one so I'm going to take it back. 
The in-laws came around noon and we had some snacks, then opened gifts and then had a turkey dinner.  It was a busy day.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas Crafts

The girls have made tons of Christmas crafts at preschool.  They've taken over the house.


Baby Jesus in a manger made with a toilet paper roll and a clothespin.  Too cute.
The jingle bells used in their performance

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Programs

Last Sunday the girls had their Christmas program at church.  Then yesterday was the last day of preschool and they had another little program there where they sang a few songs and then had treats after.

This is the 3rd year in a row they've had matching (gasp) Christmas dresses.  They actually chose the same dress this year, but the two years before that I just couldn't find two different dresses that I liked and looked good together.  And we found the cutest gold sparkly shoes at Payless.

At church, before going on
At home, before leaving

Preschool performance.  Olivia on the far left, Kayley on the far right.
We were in a bad spot to tape this, so Kayley is hard to see.  Olivia wasn't singing through most of it and Kayley comes into view at the end and starts waving to us.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Next Great Baker(s)

We made sugar cookies today.  I still haven't found a recipe I like.  Ones I've tried in the past are too hard/crispy, even if I take them out of the oven early.  This time I tried a recipe I found on Pintrest that promised soft, thick cookies.  They turned out way TOO thick.  I started rolling them thinner after the first round came out of the oven and that helped but they still kind of puffed up and were too pillow-y.  But there are tons of recipes out there so I'll keep trying different ones until I find one I like.

The girls really enjoyed decorating them.  They used an entire jar of sprinkles.


A few sprinkles, anyone?
Shoes and slippers as vechiles


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Goofy Girls

Throughout the year I've caught the girls doing cute/funny/silly/downright weird stuff and snapped a picture with the intent to blog it but never got around to it.  So here's a sample of some of the things they've been up to in the last several months.

Animal parade...or something?

Olivia with head through swimsuit bottoms

School for their animals.  Coloring books for school books.

Animal school close-up

Using the water table as feed trough for stick horses

Using step ladder as a hair salon

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Festive Weekend

Yesterday we bought our tree.  We decided to try a different tree farm this year and it was really nice but much bigger and very busy and crowded.  After selecting our tree and chopping it down, we got some hot apple cider and bought 2 cookies for $2.00 each that weren't even that good.  One was peanut butter and it was ok but a bit on the crisp side (I hate crunchy/crisp cookies.  Gotta be soft and chewy).  The other was an iced sugar cookie but it too was crisp and the icing was kind of crunchy.  Total waste of money.  Santa was there also, but since we were going to see him later at the tree lighting ceremony, we chose not to stand in line for him.

Anyway, we got our tree up and the lights on but didn't have time to decorate it before dinner.  Then it was off to the tree lighting/Santa arrival.  The girls got their picture with Santa and we rode a horse-drawn carriage.

After the girls were in bed, Paul and I had a little in-home date night.  We sat by the fire and drank eggnog martinis, the perfect fun, festive cocktail to top off a fun, festive day.

Today we skipped church to work on the tree and outdoor lights and watch the Seahawks.  It was another nail-biter, but this time they won.  The girls were totally into decorating the tree again this year and it was even a tad less nerve-wracking than last year.  They had a blast and were so proud of themselves. 

Also today, I got my weekly grocery shopping out of the way, which I normally do every Monday during preschool, so now I can concentrate on Christmas shopping instead and if things go well I might be very close to, but not completely, done after tomorrow.  December is off to a good start.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend

I feel like I'm the last one in blogland to post about Thanksgiving but we've been out of town and I don't like blogging from my phone and don't have a laptop.

So, first of all, we actually got to watch some of the Macy's parade Thanksgiving morning.  Normally we have to leave around the time it starts or soon after to get where we're going, but this year at the in-laws it was just us, Paul's parents and sister so we decided to just go later instead of going early enough for breakfast and spending the whole day like we normally do.   I was still kind of busy getting everything ready to go so I didn't see a ton of the parade, but a lot more than I normally get to.

Paul and I had decided that instead of getting up super early for Black Friday, we would try "Gray Thursday" instead, so as soon as X Factor was over at 9:00, we headed to Target.  We took one look at the line (and by the time we got there they'd already been open for a half hour, it's not like they weren't even open yet) and went right back home.

When we got home from our aborted shopping trip, we found Kayley still awake with a horrible cough.  She coughed so hard she threw up (or maybe she would have thrown up anyway but I really think it was just the coughing).  We didn't have any cough medicine (which they say you're not supposed to give to kids under 6 anyway but she's almost 5 and what could it really hurt?) and they didn't have any honey, so we tried to make do with some agave nectar mixed with water and lemon juice, but that of course didn't help any.  We moved her out to the living room so she could try to sleep upright in a chair, but she didn't like that so we put her on the couch.  And by we I mean me and Paul's sister, Cheryl, because Paul was already mostly asleep in our room, whereas Cheryl was sleeping in the den area on a sofa bed with the girls on the floor next to her.  Cheryl eventually traded rooms with Paul and I stayed out in the living room with Kayley, who insisted on keeping the light on.  Sigh.  Needless to say, I didn't get much sleep that night, and was awake when the in-laws left at 4:00 or 4:30 to go shopping and a little while later when Paul left to go to Cabela's.

Anyway, after breakfast we decided to give Target another try, and this time we actually went in and bought stuff.  After driving across town to hit Old Navy we all reconvened at the house for lunch, then headed to Westport (on the Washington Coast, in-laws have a condo there) for the remainder of the weekend.

We spent Saturday walking down to the beach, and driving into town to the docks, where we walked out on a long boardwalk thingie and watched people crabbing and saw some sea lions.  Later, we swam in the pool.  This morning was sunny and nice and Cheryl, Paul's mom and Olivia all walked to the beach again, but Paul and I were watching the Seahawks (it was another close one--Miami kicked a last-minute field goal to win.  Grrrr...).

View of town from a lighthouse-shpaed tower-thingie


The girls collected a bunch of shells and sand dollars, and proceeded to decorate them with crayons.  Awesome.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Holiday Bucket List

Visit Santa
Cut Down a Tree
Put up Decorations
Bake Cookies
Drive Around Looking at Christmas Lights
Go to Snowflake Lane
Christmas Crafts
Drink an Eggnog Latte

Drink a Peppermint Mocha
Watch Christmas Vacation 
Go See the Gingerbread House Exhibit
Ride the Holiday Carousel
Take a Family Photo
Get Advent Calendars
Go Sledding
 And the one thing I wish we could do but it's not in the budget:  Take the girls to see the Nutcracker :(  Maybe next year.

Rainy Day Fun

It poured down rain today so I decided to take the girls to the mall.  Always a good time.  But they got to play and I got to buy a Christmas gift so it was a win-win.  I also had a Google Offers deal for Starbucks so we all got cake pops and I got a peppermint mocha.

We almost always go to the library on Tuesdays and we were going to go after, but it got too late.  Tomorrow is going to be a busy day of packing, baking and running last minute errands.  Whoo-hoo.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Friends, Bread and Turkeys

We did some fun stuff this week.  On Tuesday we went to a show at the library called "Pumpkins, Turkeys and Snow, Oh My!".  There was juggling, songs and a turkey puppet.  It was really cute.  I actually hosted a meet-up there for my mom's group, and it was the last thing I'll ever host as I am not going to renew my membership next year, since the girls start kindergarten in the fall making us unavailable for most of the events and we're limited to Tuesdays/Thursdays until then (except summer).

Thursday we had a playdate with a friend down the street that we met through said mom's group.  This is the girls' latest friend they've made.  We first met them two years ago at the mom's group annual Halloween party at their house but didn't see them again until this September, when we attended another event at their house, then another a few weeks later and then this year's Halloween party.  Since then we've had a playdate here and then the one last Thursday at their house again and we're all getting to be good friends and it's awesome.

Saturday I baked some yummy pumpkin bread with salted caramel drizzled pumpkin buttercream.  Yeah, that's right.  Found it on Pintrest and it looked and sounded so awesome and it was.  I was signed up to bring treats for our sunday school class today so that's what I made and it was a big hit.

That evening Paul went out with a few buddies so the girls and I made popcorn and watched Secret of the Wings (Tinkerbell movie).

Today we went to church and then out to lunch with some friends, and then I actually took a little nap while the girls were watching Sofia the First on Disney.  I can't believe Thanksgiving is a few days away.  Tomorrow during preschool I'm going to shop for whatever groceries I need for Thanksgiving and the rest of the week and then I think I'm going to make another loaf of that amazing pumpkin bread, because I only got one little slice and the poor girls didn't get any.

Oh, and Friday the girls made these awesome turkeys at preschool.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Baby Shower Anniversary

Five years ago today was my baby shower (actually, I had two, but this was the "main" one).  I didn't have a blog yet, so I'm blogging about it now in honor of the 5th anniversary.

I think I was about 23 weeks or so (we needed to have it early in case I ended up on bed rest or something).  Our current house was being built and we had just sold our condo, so we were temporarily staying with Paul's best friend while we waited for our house to be finished.  His neighborhood has a clubhouse that residents can use for events, so that is where we had my shower.  My oldest and dearest friend (we've known each other since kindergarten) hosted it and did a great job with the decorations and food but unfortunately I don't have many pictures.


Kayley's name is spelled differently on the cake because at the time we were going to spell it "KALEY", but changed our minds later because we were worried people would think it was pronounced "Cal-y", so we added the second "y".

Last year on this day we had a birthday party for Gaga, but I think we actually got him at my second shower.  Can't remember for sure.

Yeah, I'm not a cake decorator.