Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Eve 2011

For me, Christmas Eve is a little more important than Christmas. In the 13 years that I've known Todd, I've slowly established Christmas Eve as our quiet time together...first as a young couple and now as a family of four. Its a slow-paced day full of food and preparation for the next day. I always create a menu with at least a few new things, we make cookies for Santa and do some last minute wrapping. This year's menu was made up of mostly easy dishes, use of the slow cooker and quick prep meals. I made dark chocolate and butterscotch scones, vegetable barley soup, gingerbread cookies, peppered cheese bread, garlic roasted chicken and potatoes, spinach salad with cranberries, walnuts and feta cheese and apple pie a la mode. This was my first time making chicken since high school and I can honestly say it was moist and delicious. However, the true star of our menu was the vegetable barley soup. It was warm, filling and flavorful. It was so darn good that even Norrin ate a bowlful. Anyway, besides the food, we took a short outing for some last minute Christmas shopping (I was a little grumpy to be out of my kitchen), there was the exchange of gifts from me and Todd to the kids and each other and the displaying of the milk and cookies for Santa. Ani was a little unsettled by all the changes in her daily schedule, but she's a much too happy baby to let it bother her for long. Norrin was excited and went to bed relatively promptly. Without further ado, here's a few pictures of our day...

Norrin decorating cookies...he was very serious about it and I'm pretty sure it was his favorite part of the whole day.
Taaa daaa!

Ani Rose in her Christmas striped stockings.

My wild crew- Norrin with icing on his face and Ani with drool on her chin.

Norrin singing many, many Christmas carols while Ani tries to open gifts a little bit early :).

The best gift for a gal who loves to bake- a Kitchen Aid stand mixer. This mama is mighty happy...in case, you couldn't tell.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Norrin's Christmas 2011 Performance

On December 23rd, Norrin had his Christmas party with a short little caroling performance that the family could attend. He sang loudly and he looked at me the whole time...except when Michael started slowly blocking his view. There was some pushing, a few words were exchanged and Norrin kept an arm pressed against Michael for the remainder of the performance to remind him that he better stay on his side. It was funny, sweet, entertaining and heartwarming to see our little man remembering just about every word of four different songs. And his confidence was beautiful. A truly proud parent moment for us.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

December...So Far

Oh, my, we've been busy this month. First, we managed to kill another camera. We take about 500 pictures on a weekly basis and eventually, our cameras can't take it anymore. We don't buy the most expensive cameras, so that could be part of it, but we have little ones...with sticky hands...and drooly mouths. Anyway, now that we have a new one there's plenty of pictures to show you :).

First, there's been lots of crafting for Christmas. I've become a virtual knitting machine, cranking out numerous hats and neck warmers of varying types. This lovely hat that Miss Ani Rose is modeling is the only example I'm showing because I can't ruin the surprise for everyone. I've taken on the challenge of knitting another vest for Norrin's Christmas performance. I'm about three quarters of the way through and wondering what's so wrong with a store-bought sweater vest :).
At the beginning of December, my mom came for a visit and watched our wild babies while Todd and I went out to dinner. It was nice to have some time together, drink wine, eat fancy food and not play defense at the table. My mom claims that she loves spending time with the kiddos, but I'm not so sure. Ani cried and carried on the most. When I got home, she snuggled into my arms and started looking at Grandmom and patting my chest as if to say, "this is what I wanted, Grandmom". Not sure if she meant me or the milk :).

Ani's drooling up a storm. She's on six teeth and counting. She's also very mobile. Crawls, cruises and scoots everywhere....God help me.

Grandmom Jump brought apples and pears...so Norrin had to have one of each.

Then, he had to bring out more for me and Da.

Here's a shot of our little cruiser.

And when she wants to be held and I want to get things done, we compromise with the Ergo carrier.

Yes, there's lots to be done. Crafts to finish, presents to wrap, cookies to bake. Its always an adventure though.