When You're Tired of Cereal...

I was tired this morning.  For some reason, getting up at 5am is no problem when I am going to work out.  But when I have to get up with a child, even though it was at the same time when I'd be getting up to work out, I was so tired.  George had a fever this morning which brought us downstairs to the couch to lay together.  We both fell back asleep and when I got up I was still tired.  One of those mornings.  I asked the kids to make their own breakfast, or maybe they just took it upon themselves since the cereal stash has been consumed mostly by me...I can't quite remember.  I just know that when I looked into the kitchen, a flurry of cooking was going on. 

I love that our children like to cook.  It makes me feel like I have indeed taught them something.  For some reason, the messes that get made in the kitchen don't bother me like the ones around the house. 

And even though the breakfast making extravaganza ended up with a plate being knocked off the counter and breaking into one thousand pieces...it's still worth it to me.   And I got to sit on the couch and rest while little ones were being fed. 


Merry Christmas

What a merry Christmas this year was!  All the preparations and advent traditions are now done, and now it is time to celebrate Christmas for twelve more days!!

We always go to Christmas Eve Mass, then over to the Casadys for a fabulous lasagna dinner and present opening.  The kids look so forward to this part!

It 's funny to me that TJ has sat in that same chair EVERY Christmas that I've known him.  Those aren't his glasses in case you're wondering!

Bev wearing her new Christmas eve jammies.  Every year I get the kids a new warm pair of jammies that they get to open on the way to grammy's house.

Christmas morning at our house.  I was shocked when Thomas was the first one to wake us up and it was already 6:40.  I was preparing for a much earlier start time!

Please excuse this picture of me and my darling bed head....but my lovely family got me my very own Bob and Jillian workout video with a kettle bell.  I really do love the Biggest Loser.  I can't help it.

Christmas morning at my parents house.  Dad is usually Santa and hands out our presents.  Mom makes a wonderful brunch.  And now we get to Skype with Megan who just moved to Nicaragua.  It's unbelievable to me that we can instantly see where she is living, and the ocean that is thousands of miles away.  We missed having her here, but was enjoying her Christmas morning of 80 degrees.  

Our new cousin Dominic's first Christmas

And I get the bonus gift this year...our new baby.  The anticipation of meeting him so soon is all I pretty much think about.  I hope you all have a wonderful and merry Christmas!


Christmas Vacation

We started off Christmas vacation with a bang!  TJ had taken the three days off of work leading up to Christmas which was such a gift for us!  He rarely takes much time off work and to have him home was wonderful.  The kids got out of school at noon on Wednesday, so we picked them up and surprised them with lunch at our favorite restaurant, and then going to a movie!

While we waited for our food, I asked everyone to write down what they wanted to name this baby.   Here's what I got...

Were just a few.

We had the entire movie theatre to ourselves, other than two other people who sat way down at the front, while we headed waaay up to the top!  This was Bev's first movie!  I love to see them get so excited for something out of the ordinary.

Later, we finished off the day by making our gingerbread men.  Whenever I think about baking with the kids, I think to myself how much of a mess it will inevitably make, and do I want to clean the kitchen yet again.  And even though it requires MUCH patience and much cleaning up afterwards, I am always glad that I let them help.  Because ultimately the reason why we do this things is for them to create a memory.  Even if they only remember one or two of the traditions/projects/baking that we do, it's worth it to me. 

My friends and I got up early the next day to do a Spinning class at the gym.  The incentive was that afterwards we would go to Kim's house and indulge on a sweet breakfast and coffee, mixed with great conversation. 

The past couple years we have picked an evening to go driving around town looking at Christmas lights.  It's a fun tradition...but we don't go long!  We make and bring our hot cocoa and candy canes, get into jammies and drive around looking at lights.  Someone usually has to go to the bathroom or they start getting extra wild from the sugar, so we have learned to keep this short and sweet!  We sing along with the Christmas songs from the radio and shout out..red ones...blue ones...look at those...!  This year TJ took us down a street that they call Candy Cane Lane because each house has a huge lit up candy cane in the front yard.  The best part was when George says to us all, do you realize that we are just driving around and around...?  It's the realize that gets me. 

We wait to decorate our tree until Christmas Eve.  Each year we get out the boxes and watch as the kids remember who they got an ornament from and find the perfect spot on the tree for it.  Each child has their own box to keep their ornaments in.  My mom has bought each of them a special ornament every year.  And now that they are bigger, she picks a day to take them out to lunch and then to the store so they can pick out their own.  It's a great tradition and now they have started quite a collection!

And just to clarify, we do not live where it is hot during winter.  I know from the looks of this picture that one may assume so.  I'm not sure how shorts and tank tops made their appearance, but for some reason my kids are wearing them.  The weather has been lovely the past few days, at least the sun has been shining, but hasdefinitely not been n the 70's or 80's. 


A Sunny Saturday

It was so good to see and feel the warm sun today.  To get to go outside and mull around was therapeutic.  I forget that when winter hits and its cold and snowy outside and dark by 5:00...how much we miss getting outside.  How much I miss sitting on our front porch rocking chairs, watching the kids play.  How much energy they can release by running outside.

The sun and warmer weather beckoned us to come out.  TJ got to work hanging some cedar greenery that I have always wanted!  I love how the real stuff looks, and I felt so "Little Womenish" when I saw it hanging on our porch.  I love to watch the movie Little Women and see how they decorated their home in that time period.

Wrong holiday, Bev.

TJ felt the urge to wash the vehicles, which in turn inspired me to vacuum out Sherman.  To those of you with children, is there anything more disgusting than cleaning out a vehicle that houses children who eat, color, drink, read, in them?  Not to mention the snotty Kleenex, remnants of food, and the who knows what that has dropped off from their shoes.  Seriously, in one week Sherman can get just down right nasty.  It was time for a good cleaning.

TJ was even able to persuade Thomas to let him buzz his long hair.

And these are my new favorite.  I must be craving grapefruit because I eat them like crazy.  No sugar.