Saturday, November 29, 2014

Elves, Thanksgiving, Zoo Lights

It's been such a wonderful week!
There was no school Wednesday so the kids and I went to Gardner Village to see the Elves! We've never done the Elf Scavenger hunt before so it was all new to us.
The weather was unbelievably wonderful! I made everyone bundle up in coats and before we were done we'd all taken them off and put them in the wagon! It wasn't crowded either which made it even nicer. We found all those cute/creepy little elves and turned in our paper for a candy cane stick. After getting our treats we let the kids run and play while the mommy's chatted for a while. I must say, going places with the big boys is so much nicer/easier than going without them! They were so good about watching all the babies and playing with them. On the way home my big boys went on and on about how awesome little Wa'a is and how his cheeks are so cute, and he's so mellow and not so spoiled and cranky like our baby can be haha.

We took this one for Grandpa Great

Everyone checking out the naughty and nice lists

Guess who was on the naughty list?! Sounds about right haha

Logan says there was a type-o because he's on the nice list haha

A bunch of the kiddos

Liam and Wa'a in the wagon

All the kiddos being blinded by the sun

Tecia, me and Sarah

Karson and two of his little buddies

My handsome boys

He kept playing with the wagon when we got home

Seriously! Look at the joy that little face brings!

Thursday was Thanksgiving! We have so much to be grateful for this year! It has been a year full of change and goodness. We started the day with the Macey's Thanksgiving Day parade and then that afternoon we celebrated with dinner at RaeLene's in her beautiful new house. A lot of her siblings and her parents came so we had a full house. I was such a slacker and didn't take hardly any pictures! (What was I thinking?!) The food was delish though and the company was great! RaeLene gave out the cutest little party favors! It looked like a little scrapbooked slice of pie that opened up and had candy in it. It was a great Thanksgiving Day spent with loved ones. We are so Thankful for all that we've been blessed with!

Logan and his awesome turkey

Auntie looking at pictures with Liam

Selfies to pass the time while most people were in a turkey coma :)

Playing with the cool toys they got from Kris

So thankful to still be in touch with this crazy girl!

No Thanksgiving in Germany

Black Friday I actually did a little shopping. Not in the middle of the night or anything crazy but Emily, RaeLene and I went out around 10ish to Kohls and found a few things we needed and a few things extra of course :). The line to check out was wrapped half way around the store but it actually moved pretty quickly. I've already done a lot of my shopping online over the past couple weeks (love that the Black Friday deals go online sooner) and with the exception of a handful of things I'm done! All the big items are bought though and it's such a relief to not be worrying about that now!
We hung our stockings and put the last little bit of our Christmas decorations up that hadn't gone up already. That afternoon we went back to RaeLenes to help her use up some of the Thanksgiving Day leftovers then went to ZooLights.

Last year was our first year ever going to ZooLights and we absolutely loved it! Tecia has the giant zoo pass that lets a million people in and Friday was the preview night for pass holders. She was able to invite my family and Sarah's family with her pass and get us all in. It used every last ticket she gets so we are very grateful for her generosity!
We saw Santa and his reindeer and much to my surprise/delight Liam didn't cry! He sat there good, smiled! and even gave a high five! Yay!! We walked around looking at all the lights and the few animals that were out. Liam really enjoyed seeing the monkeys! It was seriously a perfect night for it. The weather was mild and not freezing cold plus there was no snow or ice making the walkways slick. Everyone behaved and had fun, and Karson loved hanging out with little Carson that night. We almost made it the whole night without losing anyone!

Stockings are hung!

Looking at the lights

He is so mesmerized by the lights!

Santa's reindeer

writing a letter to Santa so money would be donated to kids in need





The whole gang of kids

Another shot

Liam loving the monkeys

More ZooLights

Not a turkey, guys. It's a peacock! haha Also there is a hippo not a walrus!

Tunnel of lights that change colors

Went and saw the tiger sleeping

Wa'a, Ryan and Liam looking at the giraffes while Logan was lost

Luckily it was a big kid (Logan) who got lost and not one of the babies! Not that you want anyone to get lost but if somebody is going to it's better somebody who can talk and knows to stay put. We stopped to take a picture and realized he was gone (thank goodness or I'd have left the gate before realizing!). Justin back tracked and Tecia went ahead in case he got ahead and didn't realize we stopped. The rest of us stayed put and watching to see if he passed by. Justin found him with a security person by the carousel. He told me that he thought we were going to ride it and he had gotten stuck behind some old people walking slow. He started making the Kaw sound and a security person came and helped him. He was so grateful when he heard Justin's whistle coming! We were going to ride the carousel but the line was so long we decided not to and kept walking and didn't realize he had gotten caught behind somebody. In spite of getting lost he said he still had a great night and I have to agree. Other than the short time we were looking for him and scared it was a great night with some awesome friends! We got our photo with EVERYONE there :) and called it a night.

My family at ZooLights

Everyone at ZooLights

Christmas in November

My last blog post was from the beginning of November. Now that November is ending come Monday, I better hurry and blog all the fun we've had!

The second week of November we had our first snowfall! It was so exciting to wake up and see snow on the ground. Granted it was more of a skiff than a full on blanket of snow but none the less it was sticking to the ground! We bundled up Liam and sent him outside so he could experience it! He kept putting his hands up in the air to try to catch the snow :) He loved stomping through it and leaving footprints and seemed to all around enjoy it.
About a week after that, we had some more snow that started in the evening and went all through the night. There was enough snow that the kids could actually play in it and they rolled every bit of snow we had into three giant snow balls. They were melted by the next day because it's now been freakishly warm but it was fun while it was here :)

The first snow that was sticking!

Liam catching the snow

Not sure what to think of this cold stuff he's holding haha

ready for a walk in the snow

Logan's first little snow man of the season

The beginning of the second snow that dropped a lot more

"I think we got it all mom!"

Liam watching the snow from the window

A week or two (I forget now) before Thanksgiving on our way home from school we passed somebody putting up Christmas lights. I know it's early for all the I-hate-anything-Christmas-in-November people but I thought it was genius to get them up before the snow, ice and freezing cold weather came again. It was a relatively warm day so when the kids asked if they could put them up I let them. Justin is not a fan of Christmas in November but the kids were already half way done so he put his own feelings aside and went and helped them finish. He's such a good daddy. We turned them on once when we were all done decorating outside to see how it looked but other than that we're keeping them off until December.

"A little to the left Dad"

big boys putting up the lights

Went and helped Grandpa Durfey with his lights while it was such nice weather

Happy boy loves being outside

Big boys

Hot Cocoa!

Just love this little coat and mittens

Pack Meeting was the 19th and the twins both got their Webelo award. Meaning the last slot in the badge holder on their shirt is now full! In May they officially move out of Cub Scouts and are New Scouts for a year and then they are with the big kids in Young Mens! It kind of freaks me out that they are so big! They are excited though and we are proud of them!
Kaid also received principals award that week for being so positive in class and his teacher praised him for finally getting past the pesky Math section that was giving him so much trouble.



These two always crack me up!

Getting his award

Logan's gingerbread man complete with Grandpa suspenders

The week of Thanksgiving, on Sunday, we put up the Christmas tree! I know, I know, Haters gonna hate hahaha. Maybe I shouldn't mention that I made, printed, and addressed my Christmas cards that same week ;) Don't worry you Scrooges, I'm not mailing them until December. But guess what, I got to sit back and eat my turkey, be grateful for all my blessings and I get to continue sitting back and being grateful because all those little things that can be stressful around the holidays are done! In my opinion you can be grateful, count your blessings and celebrate Thanksgiving to the fullest, AND have a little bit of Christmas decor in the background without it changing a thing. Putting up the tree was a nice Sunday morning activity before church. I always love looking at the old ornaments the kids have made and it just makes me so giddy seeing the tree up and anticipating all the wonderful things this time of year brings.

Karson and Liam decorating

Silly bug

Logan bear

The kiddos each with one of my favorite ornaments they've made

Our newest family one with everyone on it :)

Our fist family ornament

This is Logan's and I'm going to do it with Liam this year

The kiddos with our tree!

Liam is so fascinated with the lights and ornaments

Looking out the window after not being allowed to "redecorate" :)

Justin and Liam at the window

Lastly I have to talk about Liam. This kid. The past few weeks he has turned into a tornado! RaeLene called me one day while the kids were at school and was asking how it was going. I told her he was being a terror and as I was telling her he began running around the house screaming like an indian brave! She asked if that was what he was doing and had a good laugh about it haha.
I got out of the shower the other day and he had drug his diaper genie from his room to mine (still have no idea how he managed that because of where the diaper genie is in his room!) and when I came out he had it knocked on it's side and was riding it like a horse! He is definitely a wild and adventurous little boy!
That same day while I was going potty he decided to get into the church bag and pull out the pretzels for a little snack. They of course went all over the floor and he crunched them up as he stood in them picking up a couple at a time to eat. Ah the joys of toddlerhood.

One of the many messes made on any given day

can you see the loud?! haha

He is also getting so darn smart and cute though.
He can now point out his nose, ears, hair, eyes and mouth when you ask him to. And he tries to name them when he touches them too. He's getting pretty close to saying ears and eyes correctly.
He is also getting good at the piggy sound, tiger growl (Justin's favorite), and the wolf howl.
He is very polite and will always say "Thank You". He still relies on the sign for "more" rather than saying it which is killing me because he can say all the sounds in the word but just won't do it. One of his new favorites is "shoes". He's always had a shoe obsession but now he can say "shoe" and he can say "on" or "off" (not together yet. "shoe shoe" and when it's on "on on" or when he wants it off "off off").
He is great at following instructions and will bring us things we ask for.
He also says "bum bum" when I tell him his bum needs changed. The other day he brought a diaper to Justin and was saying "bum bum". He didn't need a change but he is putting the two together and realizing the diaper goes on the bum.
He can say "Up" when he wants held or in his high chair. He says "Out" when he wants down or out of his car seat or highchair.
And mostly he is just a funny guy! We are so entertained just watching him all day long! It's a wonder anything gets done with this cute boy running around learning so much new stuff lately!

Here are a couple 10-20 second clips of some of his latest tricks :)

"Where's your nose?"



"Who's Mommy's little piggy?"