Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Day.

This was the first year when both kids understood the idea of Santa Claus and were eagerly awaiting his visit for over a month. When encouraged to list all the presents he wanted, David sat down and wrote the following letter to Santa:

(for those of you who don't understand a 3-year old's writing and I can't blame you for this, it says:
Dear Santa?!
thank you
his G's are reversed and if he believes that a letter looks wrong, he erases it and rewrites it).

When reminded that Santa comes only to the good kids, David purposely changed his behavior and behaved well -- at least for a short time. On Christmas morning, contrary to last year when I had to practically beg David to unwrap a gift, he ran towards the biggest wrapped box. (To his disappointment, the biggest gift was Julia's.) When we showed him that each gift was labeled, he would recognize everyone's name on a gift tag and would bring it to each of us. Recession be damned, this year Santa was crazy generous to David and Julia, only because the kids could verbalize what they wanted. (I told you in a previous blog that I'll do anything as long as David talks).

While David went for the largest gift, Julia did the opposite. She found the smallest gift that she could carry and after opening it, she settled for a long read. She took her time unwrapping all her gifts.

Once David unwrapped his guitar, the other gifts really didn't matter that much.

And then there was Julia's new doll house... Would she be as excited opening it as she was with her Tinker Bell book? Not even remotely. Her excitement lasted just long enough to open the remainder of her other dozen (or so) Tinker Bell themed gifts.

After all this work, it was time for some rest under her new Tinker Bell fleece blanket.

As generous as Santa was this year, about an hour later, the kids had pushed all their new toys aside in favor of their old favorites.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Preparations To Christmas.

The tree was finally purchased

and the kids got right away to decorating it.

The gingerbread cookies for Santa were rolled up, cut out and baked literally a few hours before his visit.

They were decorated and eaten simultaneously (not by Santa).

And a doll house was easier to build than it was to wrap.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

What's His Fascination With Naked Women?

Everyone knows that if their 3 year old boy is quiet for longer than 5 minutes, the kid must be up to something bad. That was the case today while I was upstairs reading with Julia. It must have passed 15 or so minutes when I realized I haven't heard from my oldest. I rushed downstairs to see him sitting at his table, cutting out clippings from a magazine and gluing them on the sheets of paper. I was happy to see him being preoccupied until I took a closer look.

Right away, the memory of this came to my mind. I know I recycled Victoria Secret catalog. I must have. Anytime we get a magazine in the mail (and no, not all of them picture half naked women) David insists on cutting the pictures out of them. Surprisingly, even though he is left-handed, he is very good with scissors and cuts the pictures out along the frame line.
So, what did he decide to do with his "art"? Of course, he hung them up by himself on a fireplace.

And why not? Do we really need to hang Christmas stockings up? What's wrong with them staying on the console table throughout the holidays?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Fun Continues...

Once the kids woke up this morning, they checked to make sure that the snow was still there and their snowman was still keeping guard outside. Although both kids were eager to go play in the snow, they patiently waited for me to get out of bed.

Once outside, we had so much fun playing in the snow, building tiny snowmen with icy snow-chunks left behind by the plow, as well as climbing up and down mounds of snow that was piled up from the plowing. However, this only kept the kiddies entertained for about an hour, at which time they were tired of this activity.

Luckily, I had another activity in mind. Every winter after a snowfalls, the local kids head to a steep hill by the local pool to slide down with their sleds (or whatever else they can find to ride down.) Even as recent as last year, our kids were still too young to do this, but this year we felt that David (at least) could slide down the hill by himself. Before long, both kids were sledding down , although they particularly liked watching the older kids playing with their snowboards.

Especially surprising was that after the ride, David was actually pulling his sled back up the hill.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Let It Snow!

The snow finally arrived in our neck of the woods. My first reaction was to get the kids outside to play in the snow. To my disappointment, as we were driving home from David's daycare, he told us he had cried because the teacher had taken them outside and he doesn't like snow. Oh well - there goes my hope for some outdoor fun.

In the afternoon the snow was replaced by freezing rain, and despite his earlier complaints, David didn't to mind going outside. In fact, ever since waking from his nap, he was talking about making footprints in the snow. Once he was outside and I saw the smile on his face, I knew that a little snow wouldn't scare this boy.

He looked at one of the trees outside of our house and exclaimed "We have a Christmas Tree outside!"

On the other hand, this is how Julia reacted to the snow practically the entire time we were outside. This girl does not like cold weather or the fact she can't move in her heavy winter clothing.

Both kids got to ride a sled around our block.

David proceeded to shoveling the snow. Somebody had to.

But the main reason we were outside was to build a snowman for the first time ever. We've read about snowmen in the books hundred of times, and even saw a short movie about one that came to life, but nothing beats the experience of building one for yourself.

I tried taking the pictures of Julia and David standing next to the snowman, but David had other plans. He decided to attack me with snow balls.

Ten minutes later, Julia was still standing where I had asked her, but David was nowhere in site, he was having a snow fight with Daddy.

Once home, we settled for hot chocolate and some snacks. We even used the fireplace for the first time in years, and the kids were mesmerized.

The rest of the evening was spent making paper snowmen with stickers and crayons, and playing various games while frequently gazing out of the window to make sure that our snowman hasn't melted yet.

It was a great fun day. In fact, David is already talking about playing in the snow tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

First Snow Fight of the Season.

While eating dinner tonight, we dimmed the lights in the dining room, turned the lights on on the deck and enjoyed the view of the first falling snow this season.

After the kids finished their meal, which actually went without incident for a change (perhaps due to our new game or the excitement of the snow,) they were curious to get a better look at the snow. (From their reaction, I'm guessing that any memories of last year's snowfalls have been purged from their minds.)

Seth introduced the kids to making snowballs, and David got into it once he understood that it was actually okay to throw them at Seth and I. Of course things slowly escalated until he was tossing snowballs the size of Julia's head.

This is how our hall looked after the kids were done. Julia was walking around barefoot this entire time and was missing her socks. By now she was walking on her tiptoes as snow was scattered throughout the first floor. At one point, Julia got my attention and said "I want to go inside." Sorry, Julia, but you are inside!

David's hands were frozen by the end. I was surprised that he didn't complain sooner. We wrapped his hands in a towel to warm them up and when that didn't work, he defrosted them under very warm water.

It was lots of fun watching the kids having fun with the snow tonight. As soon as David was done, he said he wanted to play in the snow tomorrow morning. Hopefully, there's still snow on the ground when we leave for school in the morning for a little bit of snow play.