Well, we had a great Christmas, except for my cold and laryngitis (if I didn't call on Christmas, that's why). We had a small crew this year, which was for the best, as I am pretty sick with whatever this is.

Lots of food and fun, though. AUnt Karen was here and that was the best gift I could have. I haven't had Christmas with her in many years and so it was nice that she was able to make it this year. She stayed overnight and apparently was very comfortable, so hopefully she'll share that with Dad and Molly so that they will come to stay for awhile!

The kids got wonderful gifts and Marc's Jack Skellington made it to the front yard on Christmas morning. As I type, I've been watching the cars drive by and then slowly back up to get another glimpse of the giant in our front yard.

Now I just need to get over this sickness and off to a Happy New Year!
Signa loves to help, but only if there is a game in it. So today we invented Scavenger Cleaning. I hid numbered sticky notes all over and she had to clean to find it (oh, she's also really bad at finding things, so I didn't have to worry about her just finding and moving on). Then she would bring the number to me and I would give her a clue to the next number. At the end, she got her goodie bag for the day, which is making food for the reindeer.

And out of it, I got all the window sills cleaned, the garbages in the house emptied, the tables cleared, the dusting done, the beds made, and the shoe pile organized.

And the kids thought it was a fun game and wanted to keep going.

Ah, I love parenting.

Merry Everything, Everyone! Santa's coming tonight so I'm off to get ready for him.
Today was THE day. The BIG day. The day allotted for the visit with the Big Cheese. Yes, it was the annual trip to see the actual Santa. The kids have been putting it off- on the one hand, super excited to get gifts and on the other hand, super scared to have to talk to a man in a red suit with a covered up with hair face. I finally told Signa she didn’t have to talk. Just smile and hand him a note and then just say two words: “Thank you.” She was appeased and when she’s appeased, William is, too.

So off to the mall we went. We timed it for after Will’s nap, but not so late that they’d be closing. The line was long, but we knew it would be. We stood there talking to the nice people in front of us for about… 17.2 hours. Okay. It was about 40 minutes. It is finally their turn and William, with darting eyes of fear, states, “I have to go potty!” Seriously? 40 freaking minutes in line and he never had to go. Our turn? Has to go potty. Thankfully he was in a pull up and we told him to hold it or go, because we were next and for all we cared he could pee on Santa’s knee- we WERE getting a picture after all this.

It’s our turn and the kids are now resigned to Doing the Deed. They have plastered fake smiles and their wish lists in hand. They are being (gently) nudged towards the Big Guy, when he suddenly stands, walks over to the photographer teenager, who is wearing a frown and chewing her gum, and has quiet words. Then louder where I could actually catch a few. “I’m serious,” says Santa. “If you don’t go, I will.” He picks up his big red bag and starts to leave. Another teenager, but slightly older, clearly “in charge”, runs to him. They have some words and then he strolls back to his thrown and sits. The Boss Girl comes back over to the Gum Girl and says, “Just take this one picture and then we’ll talk.”

Gum Girl says, “He said he was leaving if I stay because he doesn’t like my style.” She chewed bigger and shrugged larger and frowned the same. Some style. Anyway, Santa actually took some time with the kids (hence the long wait) before pictures which was much appreciated. He apparently told them they were on the Nice List and took time to go over their lists with them. He then put the lists in his bag (which thrilled Signa because now she thinks he’s going to be using it as a checklist when he does his shopping for her) and then sat for the photo. William was… scared. And smiling. He had is Scared Smile and it’s adorable. Signa has a grin wider than Kansas, since she’s now thinking that she’s getting every Nintendo DS game ever geared towards seven-year-olds in commercials and all the other things on her list.

And we are smiling, as we have a story to remember forever: The Story of the Pissed off Santa who Hates Crappy Customer Services As Much As I Do.

The End.

(oh, and when we were in line #2 for pictures we notice that Gum Girl was no longer anywhere around. Go, Santa, go!)

Nothin'. Just baking cookies and working and going to parties. The kids' advent calendar things have been mostly little crafts with foam and glue. Foam with glue that doesn't stick quickly or easily and we are not so much enjoying. Tonight is another of those, but tomorrow we do some cookies, I believe. Cookies with Kisses, so they will enjoy.

You know how you can tell it’s almost Christmas?  Even the hint that Santa might be watching sends the children into heaps and puddles of tears and “Please don’t tell!”  It don’t STOP them from doing things (like punching me in the face or talking like a rude 15-year-old), but it makes them rethink it afterward.  And the things they do (punching me in the face, talking like a rude 15-year old, etc.) are not normal MY kid things, either.  Which I attribute to the cookies and candy canes that are strewn about, endlessly trailing our every day.


In other news,  I have lots of you that I share my recipes with in email, so I figured I’d just do another website with them listed.  I will only post those I actually try, so not just a website filled with recipes that no one can make.  I’m not a great chef, nor a great baker, so if I can do it, anyone can.  Check it out!  Share your recipes so I can try them and post them!


Friday night’s party was  a ton of fun.  We had a few of our playgroup families over for wine and appetizers.  We get together each month, but this is the first time we’ve been able to have it at our house. Signa and Will had a blast with all their friends.


Saturday’s bag contained mittens and hats, as we spent the day outdoors at the snow fountain downtown and then the parade and tree lighting.  Marc was away, so it was just me and the kids and they were happy and amazing.  It was a fantastic day!


Today was a small craft that requires glue that we can’t find.  So we are off to the store for glue.  And water.  And coffee.  And food for the week.

Today’s advent calendar thing is gingerbread cookies.  We have friends coming over this evening and so all the kids get to trash the dining room with decorating cookies.


And they each got a candy cane which William proceeded to tell me that he likes very much.  Almost as much as candy CORN.

Today’s advent bag featured a bookmark craft.  Hopefully they can do it today and make some cute things.


 Last night we did chocolate pretzels with sprinkles.  The kids liked the sprinkles… I also made gingerbread loaves last night and it’s delicious!  I’m shocked.  I think I have about 30 things to bake tonight, but we’ll see what gets done.  It’s mostly for fun, so not a stress factor.


In news entirely the opposite end from food, William is just about potty trained.  We still do pull-ups all day, as there really isn’t anything fun about accidents, but they stay dry and he runs to the potty on his own.  This weekend we may graduate to just pull-ups at night.


We got the tree up last night and it looks so pretty.  I’ll post some pictures soon.

This month, we are doing an “advent calendar”.  Each day , there is a bag to open and inside are the “ingredients” for that day’s fun.  Yesterday there was glitter and paint in the bag and so last night we made Snow Dough.  Today’s bag featured melting chocolate and so tonight we are making Chocolate Pretzels.  Stay tuned to hear what each day brings.


In other news, the ants just ate our cinnamon rolls.  They really need to find another domicile…