Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Seven Hills- Not for the Faint of Heart

Also not for overbearing, over-protective, OCD-suffering mothers like myself, either.  Our first time tobogganing this year, we immediatly tackled the deathtrap exhilarating land known as Seven Hills.  I'm certainly no 'extreme sports lovin' type of gal, strictly due to the overwhelming anxiety and concern I harbor regarding the risk of injury.  So, it comes as no surprise to me that, naturally, knowing my fear for their overall safe-being, my kids would love this sort of thing.  They, and James, quite enjoyed themselves and I myself even ventured down the hill a time or two, not wanting to suggest the label of 'party pooper'.  We had fun.....  Good, scary fun ;-)!   

One Week = A Million Photo Opportunities

As the title says, only one week and yet a plethora of memories captured in the form of photos.  We were blessed, yet again and always, this Christmas.  Probably the most quiet Christmas we've had to date.  Which is not the blessing I speak of, I might add...  It's always a delight to share it with the ones we love.  The blessings were too many to count and not enough words to expressively share.  So I'll leave the pics to that!

Merry, belated, Christmas.   

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

What Went Down In 2009

The new year started off on a 'not-so-exciting' note.  I continued to cat-sit for my neighbor, Aaron resumed preschool after the holidays, Daybreak and Buddybreak picked up where it left off.  The most exciting thing to speak of that month- Went to see 'Twilight' with Brandee for the first time!
Deep-water aquasized for the first time in my life, and probably the last.  Discovered I swim like a rock.  Started preparing James' paperwork for his last session of school.
A big month for this family.  James began his fourth year of plumbing/gasfitting.  Ava turned 3 with a tea party to celebrate and all her girly friends were invited.  Aaron turned 5 (a milestone, 'Wow- I have a five year old!!?').  We had a big bash at the local kid's gym and invited some of his school buddies.  And, my dear hubby and I attended a dinner theatre show at Jubilations, a parody of Corner Gas.  Took a mini-trip to visit my Dad in Wainwright.
Britney Spears concert (a bit of a dissappointment).  Easter at my mom's house.  Aaron gets accepted into SCA.  Also, a big month to get Aaron physically prepped for Kindergarten with 5 year immunizations and eye exams.  Daybreak/Buddybreak comes to an end for the year.  James finishes his last session of school and officially becomes a Journeyman-  YAY!!
Aaron's first t-ball game!  We're one year through our lease with our baby (the Escape).  For Mother's Day, the women in our fam go to Greenland to peruse the greenery.  The kids, myself and my grandma check out the zoo for the bazillionth time.
We re-sign our lease for another year.  Yes, another year in our 'quaint' little condo.  Attended my first LAC meeting of the year.  More movie dates with Brandee.  Treehouse Preschool comes to an end with a really cute graduation ceremony for the kids.  The guys go golfing for Father's Day with their dad.
James participates in Habitat for Humanity.  Went to my very first opening night movie 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' and stood in line for close to three hours (I've always wanted to do that :D!  No Doubt Ft. Paramore concert- a memorable one.
One word: Kananaskis!!  
The craziness begins!  T-Ball winds-up.  My baby grows up and so, begins Kindergarten. More LAC meetings.  Daybreak/Buddybreak begins again.  Another year, another anniversary- four years for James and I now.  A special visit from my Grandpa from Manitoba.
Thanksgiving dinner at my Grandma's.  Hockey begins!  My 27th birthday spent carving pumpkins and renewing my drivers licence (11 years driving already?!).  Dave, Kim and the kids make a trip into town for James' Dad's 50th birthday.  We all get the H1NI vaccination- blech!  Trick-or-treating crusade with family and friends.
Aaron's first hockey tournament.  Aaron gets the flu.  James' 27th birthday.  Attempted family portraits at Walmart.... and failed.  Yet another LAC meeting.  Braved opening night to see 'New Moon'  with my mom and Brandee (another 3 hours in line)!!  Daybreak/Buddybreak comes to a halt until the holidays are over.  Our first parent/teacher interview meeting (things are looking good)!  Festival of Trees fieldtrip with Aaron's class (been waiting years to go!).
December, so far....
LAC meeting.  Mike and Jolene's wedding in St. Paul (the only wedding of the year for us).  Made Christmas buns with my granny.  Attended Shelley and Josh's Gingerbread Christmas party.  Got my hair did!  Aaron's Kindergarten Christmas concert and skating/potluck party.  The first ever family Christmas at Birch bay Ranch with James' family (looking forward to doing it again next year :).  Hosted Christmas turkey dinner with my family.

Oh, what treasures does 2010 have in store?!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A New Holiday Fave

Just new this Christmas of 2009.  And a Canadian girl, too!  Honey let's play hookey cuz it snowed lastnight ;-)!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Birch Bay Ranch Christmas

Cozy cabin, beautiful country, snowglobe-like snow, scenic sleighride, caroling, delicious dinner, Uncle Jack Santa, photo evidence of Aaron & Ava (hers is too blurry to share) on Santa's lap, blackened landjager, chaotic-ly hilarious chinese gift exchange, plenty of laughter and a few bittersweet tears....  Just a really special evening with a truly blessed family. 

Friday, December 18, 2009

We Miss Our Ava

Life is not the same without the fourth member of our lil' family around.  With yesterday being my day to assist as parent helper in Aaron's kindergarten class, and today being the kindergarten Skating Party and Potluck {both events are required to be sibling-free}, I arranged for Ava to have a sleepover at my mom's.  While I'm happy for her and grandma to spend some quality time together {they have big plans for gingerbread house decorating and a movie night!}, it sure has made me notice how much she brings to our family.   *I should note this is the first time she's gone on a sleepover solo*  After Aaron's Christmas concert lastnight, we enjoyed some fine dining at Taco bell.  It did not take long for conversation to be directed on Ava's absense.  Aaron, "I miss Ava.  She's my little angel.".  Me, "Me too.".  James, "Me too.".  It's funny to sit there and imagine that this is exactly how life would be had we kept the number at one.  Quiet.  A little too quiet.  I sure am glad to have my girl, going back to the days of being outnumbered by the boys.  I'd be a lonely girl, living in a world of video games, hockey, farting and wrestling. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Josh & Shelley's Gingerbread Party

We attended our first Gingerbread Party at Josh and Shelley's house on Saturday.  The festivities included a yummy potluck, rice crispy houses for the kids to decorate, a gingerbread house decorating competition between the men {great idea Shelley!}, and the 'What?' game to follow.  Pics for your viewing pleasure!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Letters to Santa

Last night, I sat down with the kids to help them write wish lists to Santa.  For the first time, Aaron is finally showing somewhat of an interest in Santa Claus which really tickles me as I didn't think I'd see the day.  He still has no interest in going to sit on his lap or anything like that, but he was eager to pen a wishlist and equally eager, was Ava.  I spent most of my time assisting Aaron, writing down word-for-word his 'wishes' while at the same time I explained to him how the whole Santa thing works.  Ava needed little help as she was well on her way, filling out her whole page with colorful drawings of all the toys she wants and signing her little name to finish.  At some point, Ava must have become aware of mine and Aaron's conversation, overhearing how Santa eats the cookies we leave for him and that he leaves gifts under the tree for us while we're sleeping.  She looked up from her page (you could just see the wheels turning...) and said, with a very concerned look on her face, "Mom, I have lots of toys.  I don't want anything for Christmas.  I'm throwing this (her wishlist) in the garbage, okay Mom?!".  Obviously, something about the idea of Santa being in our house was really to her disliking.  There was no stopping the girl and unfortunatly, the wishlist was unsavable (I'd thrown out leftovers just earlier).  Oh, it was too cute!  And Aaron, I'd have to say his wishlist is equally humorous.  Basically, Dear Santa-- I don't wanna see you.  I don't wanna hear you.  I don't even want to know you were here.  Just leave the presents under the tree and be on your merry-little-xmas way.  From Aaron. 

Monday, December 7, 2009

Finally- School Pics

I finally just received back Aaron's school photos.  Two of the photos (the bottom two) are from Preschool that I had not ordered up until now...  Better late than never, I say!  And, of course, the top one is his Kindergarten photo.  If you ask me, these puppies cost a small fortunate ($60 for 3-  8by10 sheets!?!), but are so worth it.

Congrats to the Newly Weds, Mr. & Mrs. Shepert!

We couragously attended Mike and Jolene's wedding this weekend.  I say 'couragously' being that the weather consisted of one major blizzard lasting a whole two days, beginning Friday and finally wrapping up sometime early Sunday morning.  The roads were pretty shady as we headed out bright and squirrely (actually, not very bright at all.  Dark, very dark.) Saturday morning, but, I had an agenda as make-up extraordinaire for the bridal party and I wasn't about to let them down.  Slowly but surely we made the trip safely and arrived right on time at Andre and Amy's lovely home (my first time seeing their new house!).  The whole morning went smoothly and the bridal party looked fabulous.  I've always enjoyed taking part in the bridal party's morning activities, of the few weddings I've been put to the task of make-up.  There's an excitement in the air with the hair, make-up and gathering of sisters, moms and best friends.  It's a great thing to be a part of.  Jolene looked exceptionally beautiful and Mike, extremely dashing.  The ceremony was touching, the dinner, tasty, and the highlight of the night summed-up in two words: Dance Party.  Naturally, we all let our hair down, cut loose and ripped-up the dance floor like we were born to shake what our mother's gave us.  Definitely one of the most fun weddings we've ever attended!  And the accomodations were nothing short of accomodating.  When one stays at Chateau Noel, upon waking to the smell of freshly brewed coffee, you can expect to be greeted with a 'Good Morning Sunshine!', sausage McMuffins and good-hearted laughter between all, reminicing about the past night's events.  Andre is the host with the most and, of course, Amy, the hostess with the most-ess.
I have to add, as you've probably noticed, the photos telling the tale of this magical weekend are missing.  Thanks to my dumbfounding forgetfulness, the only thing I managed to leave behind this weekend was, of course, the camera.  Thankfully, it should be arriving here today via none other than the happy couple themselves, Mike and Jolene!  So stay tuned friends!