Sunday, December 20, 2009
16-Make Model Magic Ornaments
17-Exchange Gifts and Make Cookies with Ally
18-School Christmas Party and Mail Letter to Santa
19-Various Paper Christmas Crafts
20- Sunday School Birthday Party for Jesus and Watch Polar Express
21- Go See Santa and Play with Friends at the Mall
22-Get ready for Gammi and Grandad and Wrap presents, foam Christmas lacing cards
23- Gammi and Grandad arrive! Look at lights!
24- Christmas Eve- make Santa cookies and reindeer food
25- CHRISTMAS DAY!!!!!!!
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
The Chairbacker Present we use for books
The Magnetic Cookie Tray Calendar
In addition to our Activity Advent Calendar (scroll down a few posts) we have several special ways to count-down to Christmas. We have a fairly elaborate first-thing-in-the-morning routine. As soon as Brady wakes up we walk through the house searching for Ernie, our Elf-on- the- Shelf. Then she heads over to the felt and magnetic Advent Calendars. She loves finding the little felt ornament to add to the tree. Adam was first to notice her linear arrangement. I wondered if she would stick with that and thus far, she has. Then she chooses a magnet cookie to place on the magnetic cookie sheet calendar (Thanks, Grams!) She often has a plan here, too- note the mittens placed side by side. Next up is our Activity Advent Calendar. She has to remember what date it is or go back to the "cookie sheet" and look under the last cookie. This has been a great and fun way to work on her number recognition for numbers higher than 10. I read her the activity. Finally, she heads to her dining room chair and grabs the book (or books) out of it. Last year I saw that several smart bloggy moms were wrapping their Christmas books and letting their children open one a day leading up to Christmas. I liked the idea, but didn't really like the labor or waste of wrapping that many books. So, I was hoping to find an alternate way to do this. Luckily, I found this little present chairbacker on clearance after Christmas at Pottery Barn Kids. This has been really fun. We have so many Christmas books that there are many days when she finds 2 or 3 books inside the present. Our little morning ritual has been a lot fun! And I'm already thinking we'll have to have some sort of countdown to Brady's Birthday (exactly one month after Christmas day) after Christmas.
Monday, December 14, 2009
Christmas Sensory Tub- white rice- snow, dyed green pasta- holly leaves, dyed red pasta- berries?, beads- ornaments
Friday, December 11, 2009
1) Materials: regular yellow construction paper and large brown and blue (or color of choice) construction paper , googly eyes (you may be tempted to use big eyes, but as we learned in our moose research, moose actually have tiny eyes on the side of their head and rely largely on their senses of smell and hearing), black marker and glue stick
2)I simply drew a free hand a moose head shape, ears and a capital M. Here's a quick trip- I folded a piece of construction paper in half and drew a large capital M on it, so that when I went to cut it out I had 2 identical M's!
3) Cut it out! We shared in this duty.
4) Glue the head onto the background, glue ears, eyes, and M antlers. (You'll see below that initially our eyes were too close together.)
5) Have your kiddo draw large nostrils (remember they have a great sense of smell) and mouth.
Isn't this guy adorable? I'm pretty crazy about him!
To go along with our M theme and If You Give a Moose a Muffin book by Laura Numeroff we made and ate blueberry muffins for breakfast. We went to the Museum with some friends (this was already on our agenda).
We read several fantastic moose books!
1)The Elusive Moose by Joan Gannij and Clare Beaton is a hide -and -seek -book where you find a moose on each page spread. At the end of the book there is a section titled "Animals of the Northern Lands" which gives a quick factual blurb about each animal featured in the book. This book is put out by Barefoot Books, which I think are great. The illustrations are photos of embroidery and other embellishments.
2)If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff is one in the great If You Give a... series. We love everyone we've ever read. I won't go into a detailed description because I'm guessing you know about these.
3) Moose Tracks by Karma Wilson and Jack E. Davis is a fun silly book. The narrator tries to figure out why there are moose tracks throughout his house and in the end the narrator is revealed to be a moose himself.
4) Mooseltoe by Margie Palatini is a fun Christmas book. The main character is a moose father who has a huge mustache who is going to extremes to ensure the perfect Christmas for his family. It seems everything is going to be just right until they realize he's forgotten the Christmas tree. It's Christmas Eve and there are no trees to be found, so they twirl his mustache around him and decorate him!
I attempted to make "chocolate moose tracks". They were yummy, but awfully messy and difficult to work with, oh well, sometimes that's what you get when you cook on the fly.
We also made this cute moose puppet out of a lunch sack, googly eyes, a yogurt cup, glue, and construction paper. The antlers are Brady's hand prints. I got the idea and instructions here.
It was a fun, or maybe I should say a Marvelous M Moose Day!
Dad and Brady put the last touch on the tree.
B stirs the cereal for Snickerdoodle Chex Mix
1- make Snickerdoodle Chex Mix -get the yummy recipe here
2-make Christmas Wooden Spoon Puppets
3-celebrate "Uncle Andrew Day" and watch "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (more on this later)
4-go get Christmas tree
5-decorate Christmas tree and watch lots of Christmas shows
6-Make Felt Christmas Tree Ornaments (we simply cut out basic tree shapes and adorned with foam stickers on some, glued "jewels" on others)
7-Paint Christmas Crafts (Store-bought wooden Santa and Snowman frame)
1) Gather your materials. We used googly eyes, felt, pom-poms, beads, pipe cleaners, cotton balls, markers, glue*, and scissors. And of course, wooden spoons- I found mine on clearance at A. C. Moore for 35cents! (Why is there no key for the cents sign?) *I'm fond of Beacon's Felt Glue. I think it's easy to use and has a strong hold.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Next up was a little leaf-hunting. We took turns placing silk leaves around the living room and finding them. Kids love hiding Easter eggs so why not take that fun into other seasons and holidays? (This picture is not B's best-ha ha!)
Brady says a prayer right after choosing the person or thing she is thankful for that evening. It's important to me that she realizes whom we thank. One night she had two thankful items, because we had eaten out the night before. Her prayer was extra sweet that night, "Dear God, Thank you for Daddy and Ally. Thank you for everything in my life. Amen." Looks like the thankfulness lesson is setting in!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Tuesday- We had lunch with dear friends Angela and Indy and their girls Violet and Johanna. That evening we went to a special reception and fundraiser for Andrew's Memorial Garden (we are still working on a more appropriate name) at CAC. The fundraiser was a special basketball game with the girls basketball team playing celebs from a local sports radio show. A great crowd showed up, much fun was had, and lots of money was raised!
We came home to a rested daddy and Duke eager to join in our fun. Brady had a quick rest time and then we set up a scavenger hunt of treats for Duke in the backyard. As the afternoon turned into evening there were books read and shows watched, tickle fests; dinner was made and eaten. Our day was seasoned with Brady's witty comments and thoughtful observations. Many times throughout the day I thought, "Man, I love this kid!" It was the kind of day I want to hold on to forever. The kind of day that makes all of those other kinds of days worthwhile. It was a lovely day.
These photos were taken of another lovely day this summer.
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
We also had some H'ween inspired lunches. Orange carved to resemble a jack 'o lantern filled with mixed fruit and jack'o sandwich (food colored l.c. cheese with dried fruit face details and snap pea crisp stems.)
This next picture is of Brady and her BFF Ally. These two girls act like sisters- fighting one minute and laughing the next. A couple of days before H'ween we went to a special storytime and then to eat at our usual spot afterwards. These smiles are authentic!
On Halloween night we ran into a few of our favorite boys, too. Holidays are so much better when shared with good friends.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
The night before Halloween, Brady said,"How about our family dresses up for Halloween?" I said, "Well.." And she replied, "No, not our whooole family, just me and you and Daddy." Ha ha! It was decided that Adam would be a doctor, since he was heading to work after the first event.
And I was given the role of "star performer". I pulled together a simple outfit, lots of jewelry, too much makeup, and teased hair. Most importantly I carried Brady's play microphone, so I received her approval. Pretty sure most everyone else was trying to decide whether I was in costume or just had bad taste. My Queen was happy, so all was well.
Our time here in North Carolina is dwindling. Adam's residency will be over in 8 short months. Adam's interview process begins tomorrow. The light at the end of the tunnel is growing brighter. And that is a VERY good thing. But, it is also scary. There are just so many unknowns in this situation. For a long while I was focusing on the where. Where will we live? Don't know. Where do I want us to live? I'm still not sure.
Then one day it came to me: I'm focusing on the wrong questions. I should be concerned about the what and not the where. So, what do I want in our next home? I desire a home, a true home. There have been a lot of great things about living in North Carolina (and there will be more in the months ahead), but it has yet to really feel like home. I desire a good job for Adam that will leave him fulfilled, yet challenged, happy and full of peace. I desire deep, spiritual relationships; transparent friendships for all of us individually and as a whole. I desire a neighborhood that is neighborly. I desire a church home that is welcoming, engaging; where we know and are known, where we give and take.
Psalm 37:4 "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart."