Saturday, December 18, 2010

Elvis Imitator

Ivan had to do a book report on a famous person, living or dead, and then give an oral report in the first person.
He considered Cleopatra (that would have been interesting) and Davy Crockett.
We went to the library and looked at several options, but nothing really excited him until he found a book about Elvis Presley.
Now he knows more information about Elvis than I ever did.

He was particularly fascinated about the fact that Elvis died in the bathroom...and that his dance moves were considered so naughty.

So, Friday, before school was out for Christmas holidays, Ivan had a chance to give his speech.

He started slow and as you can see by the pink cheeks and twisted page of notes in his hand, he was a bit first.

At the end of his speech, his teacher allowed three questions from his classmates.  This relaxed question/answer format loosened him up, and once he was done with questions, Mrs. V asked if he wanted to do a few dance moves.

Oh yea.
Now we're talkin'.
Don't ask me twice.

Beat that Elvis!
That's some cool 4th grade funk going on!

One of the girls asked for his autograph afterwards and that started an Elvis-type riot.
He told me later that it is hard to be a rock star because of all the girls grabbing at you.
Must be rough buddy.
Don't worry, Mom's happy to help keep them away!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Snowy Saturday

Last weekend, on Saturday, it started to snow...
and snow...
and snow...

I took some pictures around 4pm when the last of the light was fading and the kids were playing.

The next day it warmed up and so much of the snow melted.
Now its cold again and the snow that's left is hard ice.
More snow expected again soon - we're hoping for a white Christmas!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Christmas Shopping on Etsy

Besides my awesome shop (feel free to click on the link to go there!), I always run across amazing sellers on Etsy!

As Christmas is approaching, I thought I'd highlight some of my favorites.

This first shop is called Stacey Winters - Photography and Other Fanciful Things.  Its all so gorgeous - particularly her Christmas items.  Here are just a few...

These are probably my favorite items...these beautiful acorns with glittered caps!

Christmas stationary...

Glittered garland made with pages from books...

and her photography of vintage deer that she turns into prints or cards.  I love these because they remind me so much of decorations that my Grandma would put out for Christmas.

Taking a look will definitely get you in the mood for the holidays!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Christmas Card Picture Outtakes

Every year, while taking the annual Christmas card picture, I end up with quite a few that just won't work.
I usually keep them and have even done some scrapbook layouts with some in the past.
They tell the part of the story that goes beyond the sweet smiles and poses.
They tell about the monsters that my kids really are.
Well...not really monsters - but they do have their strange dark sides!
Come take a peek!

Later on, after pictures were taken, they came inside...
or so I thought.

I found Hannah outside and wasn't sure what to think at first.

But I called her name and found she was still alive.

Being the annoying mom that I am, I decided that spending more than 15 minutes laying still in the snow wasn't really a great idea.
So, I called her to come inside.
And this is the delighted expression I got (I get it a lot these days...I must be doing a grand job!).

Sadly, I didn't take a picture of her very red and painful toes which she was sure were actually frozen.
And I also didn't say "I told you so!"

On a totally different note, I know I keep changing the title of my blog, but I just can't find one that seems "just right".
For now I like this one and will try to keep it for a while.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

So Very Thankful...

and just plain full!

It has been a wonderful day!
The weather outside is so very cold!

But inside our home is warm and the table set for a feast!

Donald brined the turkey and cooked it until it was PERFECT!
We had stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry apple sauce, rolls, green beans and gravy.
Later, pecan pie for dessert.

This card was made by Ivan last year, but we put it out each Thanksgiving.

Because he told us to...

Being full on Thanksgiving is something we definitely take for granted.
Just the fact that we are able to sit around together in a warm home, eating this dinner until we can't eat anymore is a luxury that so many people don't have.

So as we ate, we discussed what we were each thankful for, and it always came back to our home and family...parents who love their children, children who love their parents, a mom and dad who love each other, warm food, warm clothes, warm home.
The absolute basics of a good life.

What are you thankful for?

Early Shopping!

I don't EVER go out shopping on Black Friday!

No offense to those who do, but I find it absolutely insane to get up at the crack of dawn and fight the crowds, risk being smashed to death under someone's feet, only to wait in line for hours...all to save a few bucks!
I know there are some amazing sales, but the chances of being one of the lucky few to actually snag one of the big ticket deals is too slim for me to change my ways.

God bless America, but honestly, the concept of shopping and holidays has gotten really screwed up.

So, when I went out yesterday to find some snow boots for Hannah and Donald and myself, I probably spent a bit more than I would have on Friday, but man it was peaceful!

These are the boots I'm replacing...
I've had them for about 15 years and they are quality shoes.  But, for going in and out of snow, when you're hands are near freezing, they are a pain to tie up.
I tossed them in the driveway next to some snow that fell off the van.
That snow in the roads gets nasty after a while!

Here's what I replaced them with!
And that fur on the top goes all the way down!
Nice and cozy!

So one thing I am thankful for today is new warm boots...
But more on being thankful later!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

More Stuff About Snow

I took a few pictures yesterday when the snow let up some, but before the sun came out to start melting anything.

Some pictures of things we won't see again until next year...


Briskets from our awesome bbq made smoker!

And our garden...represented by the stone frog who patiently and stoically keeps watch.
How can he keep a straight face with that ridiculous wig on?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

First Snow!

We've been expecting it for a while now, and it finally arrived yesterday!
That's two days earlier than I was wishing for.
I hoped it wouldn't come til Wednesday afternoon, so the kids would be home from school for the Thanksgiving holidays.
But since when does anybody listen to me?

It snowed all day long...very small flakes, but non-stop...

Pounce, who spends a lot of time in the winter curled up in a cozy spot in the basement decided to head outside and see what's what.
Not sure where he headed off to, but he left evidence of his travels.

After I brought the kids home (via a harrowing drive through the city - cars were sliding and bumping into the back of eachother), I thought how nice it would be to have the driveway shoveled for Donald when he got home.
So, I attempted it...

For those of you who have never shoveled snow...don't be fooled by the tiny delicate flakes gently floating to the ground.
They add up quickly to create a seriously heavy mass of snow!

My neighbor shouted out her door, "You can use my snow blower", and I shouted back, "I don't know how to work it.", to which she replied, "Neither do I!" and shut her door!
We tried to get it going together, but I can't even start a lawnmower, so I was having no luck with this machine either.
Donald soon arrived home and saved the day!
He even got up this morning before work and cleared our driveway and two of our neighbors.  
Hot stuff even in the winter time!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Halloween Pictures

Better late than never!

We had a school carnival on Friday night, but the real candy grab came on Sunday when the kids went trick or treating in our neighborhood.
They scored!
Let's just say that out of 5 kids, only 1 wanted to keep on going.
Can anyone guess who that was?
Let's just say that Death likes his sugar!

Here's our Trick or Treat group ready to go!

These kids aren't messing around -
You'd better be ready when they come to your door!
Do you notice our cat in both pictures?
He manages to find his way into so many pictures.
And he likes to act like he doesn't care that he's there...always looking away.

Vampire ladies!

Blurry, but my favorite picture as we are obviously happy vampire ladies!

Awesome makeup provided by Dad!
Death isn't sad - he's focused.
It's serious business this killing.

And most creative costume goes to....

Our favorite pirate - Colin!

And finally - Cleopatra!
I absolutely loved this costume...especially because when we originally talked about Halloween, she was thinking about going as Obama.
Well, we never looked for found any Obama masks. so later, when we were at Target she saw this costume and liked it.
We added a wig and makeup to complete it.
I thought she looked really nice...then I saw this picture...

Who IS this?
Is this my ELEVEN year old daughter?

Notes to self:
1.  Hide makeup
2.  Buy Obama mask

Happy Belated Halloween!