Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

A very Happy New Year from our family to yours.  Here's to a wonderful year in 2011!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

All is calm.

Well, sort of.  There are plenty of last minute things happening around here to get ready for the big day, but in the midst of all the activity, there have been some blessed moments of calm.
Like sitting here...

...and sipping some mulled wine for the grownups...

...and hot chocolate with "the works" for the kids...

...sharing some of these with loved ones...

...and following these up the stairs at bedtime...

...viewing old favourites that get you in the spirit for the holidays.

And seeing these children, who are so excited for Christmas that you can't help be enthusiastic about it's arrival too, no matter how much is left on the to do list.  

It's almost time to throw that list out and just enjoy the holidays that pass all too quickly.  
I hope you all find time over the holidays to do the things that make you happy and bring you peace.  From my family to yours, have a wonderful Christmas, and a very happy, healthy 2011.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Oh gingerbread, oh gingerbread.

Another tradition we wouldn't ever let go of is the making of a gingerbread house over the holidays.  This year it came with compromises too, in the form of a gingerbread kit from Costco.  You know what though, that kit made a darn cute Santa's house and toy shop!
The kids and I did this today while Joe was at work.  Over the years I have become more of a spectator with regards to the gingerbread house decorating, but this year, with two buildings to put together and decorate, I helped a bit more, and the four of us had some fun.

How cute is that?!  And yes, the kids are still in their pj's at oh, probably close to noon.  It was the first "official" day of their holidays, so why not?  If you are wondering why Sam looks less than thrilled here, it's because 30 seconds before I took this picture his big sister told him off for eating the icing off the roof of Santa's toy shop!
And so goes the first day off of school.  Tonight will be some Christmas tv viewing; maybe Rudolph, or Frosty?  Yay for PVR's!

Holiday traditions.

Every family has holiday traditions, some newer, some old, but always special.  Sometimes you have to know when to let go though, otherwise the holiday season becomes more about a lot of traditions that don't feel joyful anymore, but more like obligations.  The past few weeks we have all been sick, with the exception of our oldest child, with the flu.  The miserable, fever, chills, body pains, kind of flu.  It hit Sam and Abby first, and they bounced back rather quickly, but it has hit Joe and particularly me really hard.  So hard that a lot of the things we usually do in December had to be cast aside, so it's been a much quieter month than it usually is.  At first I felt bad about that but now I'm seeing it's kind of nice.  We have a few days until Christmas now, and they'll be filled with the things that really are the most special and beloved traditions for us.

One special tradition for us is to have Poppa and Grandma Val come over for lunch and cookie decorating.  We've done this for years now, and for the kids especially, it is a tradition they really feel makes their holidays.  I think Poppa and Grandma like it too!

As the kids get older, the "event" gets more involved.  It started out as just a brunch or lunch and cookie decorating marathon, and has evolved into that and much more.  This year the kids worked for ages to decorate the playroom, and write and perform a holiday play for us grownups.  They planned games, and served coffee and... well, candy!  What more do you need, right?

We had lots of fun, and some laughs at these crazy kids.  Even those of us who can be a little, "bah, humbug" about the holidays enjoyed themselves, I think.
Thanks for coming Poppa and Grandma Val.  Same time, same place next December!