Saturday, December 26, 2009

The day after

My good friend Melissa Hamblin had one of these when I was a kid and I thought it was the coolest. I have looked at them on line and they run $350 bills! So when I saw one at Tuesday Morning on sale for $150 I decided to check after Christmas to see if it was marked down more. I walked in right as they opened and scored this beauty for $60!

The woods used and carving are absolutely beautiful.
I hope my kids love starring at it as much as I do.

When I got back from the store Eric had already cleaned up the carnage from Christmas and had already started taking down the decorations.

By 12:30 all the ornaments were off the tree and he had his sawzall out to cut it into pieces.

It is always fun to decorate for Christmas and it always feels good to get it all put away!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Morning

Eric and I had finally cleaned up all the food and dishes from the party and accomplished all the last minute Christmas tasks and gone to bed. We had been quietly laying in bed for about 15 min when we heard Ruby yelling "He came, Santa came" from the balcony overlooking the living room.

It was 12:15 pm so I walked out and told her it was still the middle of the night and she needed to go back to sleep until morning. I went back to bed only for a few minutes before I could hear Ruby and Lucy whispering. They were standing on the balcony with flashlights trying to see what Santa left. I told them to go to bed. About 20 min later Ruby and Haley were jumping on our bed saying "Read this... You are not going to believe this!!!" Eric and I looked at each other and realized there was no way we were stopping this train, so we all got up to open presents.

They were so excited to hear that Santa was giving our friend Anna (who desperately wanted a chinchilla) her own chinchilla... and it was in our laundry room for Haley to take care of until Anna's family got back in town.

Eric and I sat in an exhausted stupor while the kids ripped open the gifts.

Haley was thrilled to finally get the box turtle(now named squirtle) she has been begging for.

At about 1:30 Eric and I finally went back to bed while the girls stayed up playing for hours.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The dog wash

One of those times that as a Mom you say to yourself...

"I can't believe I thought this was a good idea".

Then you get in the car and the kids say
"That was sooo much fun, can we do it again?".

Fyi- the dogs are still alive and we did not have to pay any fee for damages.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Our 1st snow

It may not look like much, and it may not have lasted for long.. but this was very exciting for us!

Friday, December 18, 2009

A great idea

One of the Mom's in Ruby's class had a fabulous idea for their class Christmas party. All the kids made fleece scarves and wrapped them up to donate to the local center for homeless teens.

I was super busy helping them cut the scarves so unfortunately I didn't get any photos of them making them. They were very serious about making the scarves and wrapping look good. When all was said and done we had 38 scarves wrapped and ready to go. The kids really enjoyed making them and I know the recipients will enjoy the extra warmth.


"Mom, it doesn't matter if I peed in the bathtub because Ruby and I peed in the bathtub last night." Lucy

"I did not pee in the bathtub." Ruby

"Yes you did." Lucy

"Ok, that is just disgusting. Did you seriously pee in the tub???? That is like trying to take a bath and get clean in a dirty toilet that someone has used. Really, no more baths only showers." Me

"A bath in the toilet???... coool!" Lucy (as if she was day dreaming about it).

Tonight we may have had the worst family home evening I can remember. These are a few of choice examples of how the night went.

"Ruby it's your turn to choose the song, what do you want to sing?" Dad

"Jingle bells" Ruby

" Ok... Mom it's your turn to conduct" Dad

"Dashing through the snow, in a one horse open sleigh" Mom and Dad singing

"NO, NO, NO, NO!!!! I said Jingle bells!!!! Ruby screaming

"This is how it starts, jingle bells is the chorus" Mom, while Dad continues with the song.

"I said Jingle Bells" Ruby throws a screaming tantrum during the entire song while we continue singing.

I googled "Jingle bell lyrics" and read them to her explaining that is how the song starts.

"You guys are totally lying!" Ruby disgusted with us.

We had a lesson on compassion and the importance of helping others and focusing on others more then ourselves. I explained that each of the girls were going to buy a gift that they would like to have, and donate it to a little girl their age that needed help this Christmas. I passed out the tags with the kids ages to each of my girls.

"Why should I give her a gift... she is going to give me NOTHING!" Lucy with a mean looking sassy face.

So much for my lesson.

"OOUCHH!!!, this Christmas tree must be a boy because it just scratched me" Lucy

"My favorite thing about Christmas is remembering and thinking about the birth of Santa"... long pause while I looked at her (Ruby) puzzled.... "I mean Jesus, the birth of Jesus" she said.

On the long flight to Puerto Rico my nephew Jacob was furious and said
"Dad, Ali hit me!"

"That's ok, when we get off the airplane you you can hit her back" Jake's Dad

Jake turned insta-happy with a big smile on his face and said "Really??? OK!"

Then Jakes Dad said "No, not really I was just kidding"

Jack folded his arms and turned insta-angry again.

While standing on the ramp thing waiting to get into the airplane a man standing next to Ruby said "So are you excited to fly on an airplane?"

Ruby casually replied "Not really, flying just not my thing."

Friday, December 11, 2009

Oh dear!

There goes Ruby's career in fashion!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

I'm so sad.

I have spent the entire morning looking for a nativity.

It is Christmas so I thought this would be easy, it was not. As I asked sales people if they had any nativity's some did not even know what a nativity was. The salesperson at JC Penny said "No we just have Mickey Mouse christmas stuff". After looking through shelves full of Santas, snowmen and nutcrackers I finally found a nativity on the bottom shelf of Kohls.
I realized today that the world has officially dropped Christ from Christmas.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

WARNING: Objects on mountains may be larger then they appear.

We wanted to do Christmas as true Oregonians, so Eric and I went to the Land management office and purchased a permit to cut down our own Tree.

We drove for about 45 min into the mountains, then got out in 19 degree weather and walked and walked all over looking for "our" tree. We both finally agreed on this one.

We had walked a lot farther then I realized so carrying this baby back to the car was not easy.

It was not until we got home and put this tree in our living room that we realized the how huge this tree was. We cut 3 feet off the bottom and it didn't even make a difference!

Haley decided on an angel this year instead of a star. She had to climb so high to put it on it on the top, she was terrified.

We had to move furniture out of the room to make space for this tree. Eric purchased 10 additional boxes of lights and then we put every ornament we own on it (even though it still looks empty).

At 13 ft, I'm sure this will be the largest tree that we will ever have in our home. Eric and I both agree that next year we are going to a tree farm to cut down our own tree.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving trip day 10 St Croix, U.S.V.I

All the water in the Caribbean is beautiful, but the water around St. Croix was breathtaking. The photos don't even do it justice. I think this ended up being my favorite island, it's just beautiful.

We took a boat out to Bucks island (a national park) you can read about the park here. I wish they had a lodge here.

We went snorkeling over the beautiful reef. Because it is a national park it had signs underwater. One said "Entrance to the grotto". After we swam into the grotto, Ruby stuck her head out of the water and said "This does look just like where Ariel was singing."

Every time I saw one of these fish the colors reminded me of the 80's. This will forever be called the 80's fish to me.

An example of some of the soft coral.

When we were snorkeling by these fish, Ruby stuck her head out of the water and said "That's called a school".

I may never eat at a restaurant with a better view!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving tip day 9 St Martin & St. Maartin

Our port was on the Dutch side St. Maartin

So we took a 35 min taxi ride to the French side of the island- St. Martin. We walked around all the french shops, went to an open air market called Marigot and stopped at this bakery for treats. I have never met a Napoleon I didn't like, but this one was slap your Grandma good.

Lucy with her doll from the Marigot market. Eventually Ali and Ruby all got these dolls and they played with them like barbie dolls.

Then we dropped the kids off at the ship (kids club) and did some Christmas shopping without them on the Dutch side.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving trip day 8 St. John, Antigua

Thanksgiving day...

Nothing makes me more thankful then a beautiful empty beach.

No hot kitchen, no stress, no fighting, this is my kind of Thanksgiving.

Lucy obviously learned these optimal digging techniques from Opal.

After the beach we headed back to town. The girls all wanted their hair braided, but once the lady started they were obviously in pain. I was surprised that they were all wiling to endure the pain to look cool.

Thanksgiving dinner was wonderful but not having to clean up was even better!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving trip day 7- St. Lucia

We went out to a beach that was highly recommended, but I'm not sure why. The water was beautiful but the beach was really narrow and very crowded. This was not my favorite island, but we had fun.

A man walking down the beach showed my girls some pretty shells and said "If you want one go tell your father you want it." Eric ended up buying 3 pretty little sea shells for $2 a piece. A few minutes later I was looking at one of the shells and a creature started crawling out. Sicko. I ran up to the man and said we did not want shells with creatures and he assured me that they would just crawl out. One day later our room smelled disgusting with dead creatures deep inside pretty shells. While we were out Eric asked our room attendant to make them disappear.

That night the kids became pirates at the kids club and tried to take over the ship.

The pirates were unsuccessful so they surrendered and came to the ice show with us. Most of the shows on the ship were pretty lame, but the ice show was amazing and really fun to see!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving trip day 6 Barbados

Barbados was our first island so we were all really excited to get off the ship and check it out.

Moving 7 kids that are deaf to parental voices can be a challenge, but eventually we got everyone off the ship, on the bus and out to the dock for our excursion in Barbados.

The kids thought sailing was cool, but they LOVED that there was a bar on board with unlimited sodas and fruit punch.

Our first stop was snorkeling over a reef with a shipwreck.

Eric diving down to get a closer look.

The second stop was to swim with the turtles. It's amazing how many turtles showed up when they busted out the chum. These were my favorite pics of the turtles. Fyi- these are not photoshopped at all, this was the color of the water.

The last stop was at Sandy Lane the exclusive resort where Tiger woods was married. All beaches in Barbados are public property, so we just pulled up on the sand and hopped off. I'm sure the people that paid thousands of dollars to stay there were not thrilled, but we only stayed for an hour and I was glad we stopped.

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