Tuesday, December 06, 2011

questions answered and pictures to prove it

what is not to love about a great hat?  you have probably noticed that i have a long standing love affair happening with hats.  i love wearing them, myself...and i certainly love putting the kids in them.  colt won't really cooperate and wear anything but a baseball cap...but the rest of them do pretty good at humoring me with hat fashion.

so.  here we go.  i have had several of you e-mail or ask me about our family activity advent calendar.  i posted a picture of the advent lodge that we use (from target) several posts ago.  and what i did was cut red and green paper into strips and then enlist chad and colton to help me write the activities on them.  you fold them up and put one behind each door.  i fit all of the activities on the calendar (picture below) where they would fit best with our schedule and then made sure the right activity was behind the right door.

this is especially for you girls that have asked what our activities are:

day 1:  go get tree
day 2:  decorate tree (this didn't exactly happen as planned...but you get the point)
day 3:  make cookies and watch polar express
day 4:  make paper snowflakes (i put this on this night b/c chad and i had a church meeting)
day 5:  play candyland
day 6:  split an over-sized candy cane
day 7:  read a chapter from the greatest christmas pageant ever
day 8:  make a christmas card to send to the person of your choice
day 9:  have friends over for dinner (already planned...so i just fit it in)
day 10:  bake cookies for the neighbors
day 11:  go see santa
day 12:  make a christmas card and send it to a soldier
day 13:  watch ELF (will use candy from the movie for treat)
day 14:  play christmas charades
day 15:  go get ice cream (invite a friend)
day 16:  go look at christmas lights (pre-planned...so it had to go here)
day 17:  pick out toys from playroom to donate and take them to lighthouse)
day 18:  4 siblings draw names and then go shopping for that sibling's present
day 19:  build a gingerbread house
day 20:  wrap gifts together
day 21:  make reindeer food
day 22:  watch the nativity story (amazing movie and i totally recommend it)
day 23:  bake Jesus' birthday cake
day 24:  attend christmas eve service and have a birthday party for Jesus at our house*
day 25:  read the story of Jesus' birth from Luke 2 before we open gifts

*i may substitute one of the earlier activities next week with making birthday party invitations to give to everyone who will be here christmas eve.  i didn't think of that one until later.

i wrote all the activities on my calendar so that i would know what was coming and would be able to plan for it.


day 2:

our decorating the tree magic happened to coincide with aiden losing her very first tooth.  i had to fight the disappointment of not being with her when she lost it at school that day.  i pulled all of their first teeth...but she insisted on letting this thing dangle until it fell out while she was eating a cupcake.  i just don't get that.  why not just pull it?

i set up a buffet of appetizers and cookies.  the kids loved being able to pop on over for a cheese cube in between ornament hanging.

annslee hung her first ornament.

aiden followed in her footsteps.

they wrapped themselves in the holly-berry garland.

and when the star topper wouldn't stay straight...chase improvised.

i don't know how these didn't break where we ended up with all the tiny balls bouncing all over the foyer.  that just seems like something that would have happened.

i like to call this picture, "stop taking pictures."

this was colt's ornament placement...right smack dab in the front.  it took everything i had in me to not move those.

chad removed kermit and did some pruning to make the start work.

day 4:

we made snowflakes.  this activity is really fun when it was just me and aiden last year...but it didn't go over super great with the boys.  they were kinda bored with it.  and i didn't like the clean-up.  lotsa tiny paper snips and now my table cloth and place mats are caked with glitter glue.

annslee didn't really appreciate this craft either.

note to self...giving the girl markers and scissors to keep her quiet is not a good idea and should never be done again.

day 5:

christmas candyland.

this was hysterical.  colton had me rolling the whole time.  since there were only 4 game pieces and we had 5 playing (aj was in bed...we learned our lesson during the snowflake debacle)...colt decided to be baby Jesus.

and for the second game...we all decided to be a nativity piece.  i'm not kidding when i say that colton and i were laughing so hard that we were crying.  colton kept talking for the wise men and calling the camel an over-sized donkey and saying that we knew which square he was on because of the brown pile.  you are just going to have to trust me when i tell you...that at the time...it was really funny.

and of course...true to form...chase had to march to the beat of his own drum and be luigi.

fine by me.

before the game started...annslee did this.

and ended up in time out, here.

which is why she didn't get invited to candyland.


my brother in law made my day and sent me these deer antlers.  they are beauties.

in other news from the weekend...annslee made her debut on the church stage.  the little ones sang in church. an added bonus was that she wore a jumper that mom made for me when i was little.  i'm pretty sure she was hearing this song for the first time.  she seemed to not really know what was going on.

so she started whispering to the teacher next to her.  only she can't talk...but i was imagining it went something like this...

"pssssst.  i don't really want to be up here.  and i don't even know this song.  could you please, kindly help me off this stage?"

and when that didn't work...she just clasped her hands and held her head high.
(that's my girl.)

the highlight of the performance is when she was on her way off the stage and spotted her granna and grandaddy in the audience waving at her.

after church, we celebrated one of chase's friends with bowling.

remember when we thought that bowling shoes should be casually stolen and become a part of our wardrobes?  i'm not really feelin it anymore.

the little boy and his sister were born on exactly the same day.  pretty cool.

until someone starts talking about joint birthday parties.

just one more thing...

enjoy your day, friends.

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