Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas 2009

Even though we had planned on spending Christmas here in Huntley this year, wanting the kids to be able to stay in their own home on the holiday, the weather has other plans for us. We've been checking the forecast all week and noticed a marked difference in the conditions between Friday and Saturday. We decided to change our plans and drive home to Rochester on Friday (Christmas Day) in hopes of beating the bad weather. Let's hope we made the right decision.
So, with our sudden change of plans, "Santa" had to come a day early to our house. Our kids are still so young that they don't know the difference anyway.

So, when Tia woke up this morning, she saw that Santa had paid us a visit. She was up before her sister so she couldn't open presents from under the tree. However, I did let her have her stocking while she waited.

Look at the pure joy on her face! Her stocking was hand made by my Mom before Tia was born. We all have one and they are so special to us.

After Gia woke up, the excitement was on again and they opened their presents together. Our kids are thankfully not into big ticket items yet. They each had just 5 small gifts to open and then D.R. rolled out their "big gift", their bikes.

The bikes were a huge hit and the girls have been sitting on them in the house pretty much all day. I can't wait for Spring! Now, if we can just get Gia to agree to wear a helmet.
After the bike excitement, we realized that Gia never opened her stocking, so I sat her down for a picture with hers too.

My Mom made this one before I was even pregnant with Gia! She just knew we would have another baby, and her hands were getting worse with arthritis, so she thought she better make one while she still could. We're sure glad she did.

So, tomorrow morning we head out on our big road trip to NY. We're hoping the weather will cooperate, and praying for a safe trip.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Wonderfest 2009

It's that time of year again. We went on our annual trip to Winter Wonder Fest at Navy Pier in Chicago. The first hour that we were there, Tia cried more than she smiled. She just couldn't figure out why she had to wait in line for each of the rides (she is royalty after all!). Once we figured out a plan, where D.R. would go on the ride with them, and I would run off to the next ride to stand in line for them, then things began to go a little better.

Here are some pictures from the day...

Mini Ferris Wheel

Our favorite, the Dragon Ride

The decorations alone are phenomenal, and worth the price of admission!

The kids were not at all happy with having to pose for a picture in front of the tree with Daddy. They just wanted to run and play!

The most exciting part of the day was when Tia got called up on stage to help with a performance. She was so proud and took her role seriously. I think she's a natural on the stage!

After the stage performance, and lunch, Tia kept asking if we could go to "her" hotel. We had stayed at the same place in September, so it was fresh in her memory. All she could think about was getting back there. I guess to a 4 year old, a nice hotel is a lot better than a winter festival! We did have a nice morning though. It's our family tradition. I always wanted to start one of those!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Tiny Dancers

Over the weekend, the girls both had their dance recital. It was so precious! This was Tia's second year, but Gia's first. They both did a fantastic job and caused a lot of Oooh's and Aaahh's from Mom and Dad. I really love this time of parenting sweet little girls. These days fly by much too fast.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Small Town; Big Family Fun

Living in the midwest with young children has really been a treat. There are so many things for families to do. This week we went to the Huntley Library Holiday Open House. The library shuts down regular business to put on a big party for the children. They had a clown, snacks, arts & crafts, music and of course visits with Santa! All of this was free. To top the evening off, we were all (adults included) given a book to take home and keep.
The best part of the evening was that Tia got the courage to sit next to Santa! She's pretty scared of the big guy, but that night she was willing to sit next to him for a picture.
The library is one of our favorite places in town, so it was a special treat to go there at night. A great time was had by all.

Friday, December 11, 2009

More funny stuff

My kids are still cracking me up every day. These are so funny, I just had to write them down!

* Gia tells me she doesn't want to take a nap. I explain that everyone takes a nap, even Mommy, Daddy, and Santa. She gets a look of disgust on her face and says "NO! He's not sleeping, he's at the MALL!". I guess she told me.

* Yesterday I'm trying to tell D.R. a story..."There's a lady in my playgroup whose name is Gia...". Gia comes running into the room and yells "Hey, I am NOT a lady!". Good to know. Also good to keep in mind that she is listening, even when we think she's not.

* I was making up a song and singing to the girls before bed..."I love my family, we live in harmony...". Tia says "Mom, we live in Huntley". Glad she knows that important piece of information!

That's all for now. I'm sure there will be more very soon!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Tia's First Christmas Pageant

Tonight was Tia's Christmas pageant at school. She hasn't talked about it at all in the weeks leading up to today, so I nearly forgot all about it. Thank God for my husband and his steel trap memory!
Because Tia goes to a Christian preschool, they have Christmas songs, a Christmas party, and even a Christmas tree. Most public schools have stopped having Christmas celebrations for fear of offending non-Christians. Although I understand the reasoning, it sure was refreshing to have a good old fashioned Christmas pageant. Just like when I was a kid!

We all had a great time and were so proud of our little singer! I have no idea what song they're singing in this clip, I'd have to look at the program and try to figure it out. I just think they're all so darn cute!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Cards

I was planning to get the kids dressed up in their Christmas dresses and take pictures for our Christmas cards this year. Then, my husband in all his wisdom, said "Why don't you just take them in their dance outfits right now". We were getting ready to go to dance class so they were already dressed. I thought about it and decided, what the heck, who says they have to be in Christmas dresses? They love their dance outfits, and this is how they look normally, so we went for it. Here are a couple of the best shots I got.
I'm their Mom, so I think they look great in anything!

We're using the first one for the cards. If you're reading this and you don't get a card, please don't be offended. We had 48 cards, and we have already run out! Note to self: buy 60 cards next year.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

A Few of my Favorite Things

My friend recently published this on her blog, so I stole it from her and changed the answers to suit me! I'm quite sure she won't mind at all.

A place you'd like to travel to:
Right now I'm thinking about Hawaii. I've been all over the world, on many adventures, but Hawaii always brings me back. We were there on our honeymoon and 1 year anniversary (with Tia). It's warm, the sun always shines, and the people really know how to relax. My kind of place. It may soon be time to show Gia our favorite place!

Your Favorite place at home:
The couch! I love to cuddle with my sweet girls on the couch (D.R. prefers the floor!). It's also where I sit to read lots and lots of books. Very cozy.

Your favorite TV show:
Well, it depends. Right now I'm really into "Rescue Me". I didn't watch it while it was actually running on TV, we get it on Netflix and watch several episodes in one night. A few months ago we did that with "The Tudors". We find a good show and get hooked. The only problem is we go through the episodes too fast, and are sad when the series is finished.

Your favorite food/drink:
I think I could eat cereal every day of the week and never get sick of it. I love Honey Nut Cheerios right now. I am also a pretty big fan of pizza if it's done right (the NY way!).
As far as drinks go, I like water and Diet 7-up. I rarely drink alcohol but when I do I like Kahlua in my coffee.

Your favorite piece of clothing:
Pajama pants and t-shirt. I love comfort more than style!

The season I love the most:
Fall! I enjoy the crisp air, the changing colors and the lack of humidity. I don't do well with extreme temperatures, too hot or too cold. Fall seems to be just right.

Something I look forward to everyday:
When Tia wakes up and comes bounding down the stairs to say good morning to me. She is always wearing her biggest smile, crazy curls, and rosy cheeks. We should all wake up looking and feeling so good.

That's it for now!