Is basically a blur.  I got up to open gifts with the kids for a few minutes then headed back to bed.  J. took them to his sisters to celebrate and I stayed home to try to rest.

Pictures from morning.

Apparently,that is the sum total of the pictures I took.  Did I mention I was really sick?

Anyway, as a family we got a mini trampoline and a sled for each of us.  The kids each got a book, a set of Wikki Stix, and a pile of Pokemon figures to share.  I made J. a hat.  He got me “The Tales of Beedle the Bard”.  The kids got each other stuffed toys and a mug and a dragon figurine.  We all got goodies in our stockings like candies, lip balm, bubble bath, crank flashlights, and silly putty.

The kids seemed happy with it.  And trampolines are great!

Pics taken later…

Wikki Stix:

Color splitz markers:

J.’s hat:

Patting Myself on the Back

You know you are an over-prepared mom sometimes when the following happens…you are on the phone having a conversation with a friend and you don’t really want to get off.  Your kids come and ask if you will make them one of those lists of things to search for…you know, a scavenger hunt!  And you calmly say “There are some already in your notebooks” (the ones you spent time compiling for family trips to be sure the kids would be happy even if electricity went out and it stormed the whole time).  And then you pull one out and your kids who can now read the list go off and find all the items, triumphantly putting them on the couch while you finish your conversation.

This rocks!!!

Playing with New stuff and Old

“Totally Gross”, a fun trivia game:

The suncatcher/window art set from their cousins:

My daughter also made some freehand ones using the book that came with it.

After playing games and crafting…I felt ill.

Really really ill. And cramped up.

And got sick.  For days.

ETA: Finally recovered enough to be useful and up and out of bed comfortably on New Year’sDay.  This was the worst flu bug I have ever seen and it appears to have hit almost every family we know.

Christmas at my Mom’s House

We had a great time at my Mom’s house for our early Christmas today and the kids got to play with their cousins.  There was lots of DS playing (my nieces seem to like them), some rounds of “Thingamabots”, playing the new version of Rat-A-Tat-Cat” my daughter got for a gift, and foosball on my mom’s game table.  My son also worked on learning how to turn a piece of paper into a dollar with a magic kit he got for a gift. 

I only managed to snap 2 photos before my camera battery died on me.  The family pic was sent to me by my step-brother.  Thanks Keith!

When we got home the kids hung out playing in their new PJs and drank hot chocolate while munching on the apples we got from my Grandma.


Baby Sweater. It is amazing how much time it took me to pick out the buttons…I actually took the sweater to JoAnn’s and kept auditioning them. I settled on red and pink because everybody seems to feel the need to buy lots of red and pink for baby girls so hopefully she will get something perfect to wear it with 🙂

Final touches for the marble bag.

Microwave heating pad…a collaboration with my daughter.

Candied orange peel, drying and waiting to be dipped in chocolate. I like to make this for my grandma because it isn’t something you see in the stores everyday and because she has always told me she likes it.

Here is a bit of what was going on today in the background during the time I was crafting. We have a box I keep full of bits and pieces of broken toys, extra puzzle pieces, containers, cardboard scraps, etc. I have been adding to it since the kids were tiny. Here are some of my daughter’s creations and the BIG pile.

My son was off drawing pictures of characters for a comic book he has decided will be called “Whachamacallit and Rosies”.

Holiday Crafting

We are reaching the homestretch as far as holiday crafting goes. As I tried to finish up all the little leftover bits like sewing on buttons, etc., the kids hung out with me and worked on their own creations.

Here is my latest quilt (for my niece)

Here is the sketchbook cover/purse.

Here is the marble pouch.

Here are the kids’ projects.

Middle of the Night Playing

We have shifted our schedules a bit more towards staying up later/waking up later due to the kids reading with me and begging to do more books at night. They are really calm and pay attention to reading at night, which they turn down endlessly during the day for whatever reason. Anyway, after we stayed up quite late reading, J. and I both fell asleep and we thought the kids were sleeping too. When I woke up in the morning I found these…

More foamies on the bathroom rug- a mixed batch of shapes and clothing.

Pollies dressed and lined up neatly on top of her bunk bed car.

Apparently my daughter got back up to play and my son joined her when he got up to go to the bathroom.

Dressing Foamies and Polly Pockets

This time the foamies are people.  I picked some up when finishing my craft supply shopping on the weekend.  My daughter played with them at a friend’s house after gymnastics yesterday (on a plate with water), then for 2 hours in the bath last night, and then for another 2 hours today.  She creates lots of characters and then gives them relationships to each other and acts them out.  I like them 🙂

She has been doing the same thing with Polly Pocket dolls and now also with her little animals. 

One cute note is that she says “P-shirts” instead of “T-shirts” cuz they have a “P” on them of course.

What is your Name?

My son brought me his “Captain Underpants and the Perilous Plot of Professor Poopy Pants” book and asked me what all of our names would be under the system in the book.  Then we did all of our friends.  Then our pets.  Then imaginary people with already silly names.  Good fun.  He is Poopsie Hamster Face.   So, what’s your name?

Picture he asked me to put up.  He is still squeezing into his vest from China.  Thanks Mom 🙂

Crafting Stress

Somehow my projects always wind up a bit more ummm…challenging than I wish they would.  The sketchbook cover/purse I am making is giving me quite the workout.  The zipper I bought to match it wasn’t quite the right length, but they didn’t have it in a larger size so I struggled for a long time, ripping it out several times to try to get it to work.  During one of the frustrating moments (where I almost threw in the towel but instead tried to set a good example for my watching children) my daughter decided to make cards for me to cheer me up.  It worked and I plowed on, getting it to work well enough for my standards.  After the zipper was in, I crocheted the trim for the handles and then stressed over the color combination and the fact that the lime green now looked dirty and sucky!  More work to try to rescue it.  A bit of blanket stitching around the edges and the pocket will hopefully save it.  After making cards for me, my daughter moved on to making them for other folks in the family.

The pesky zipper:

I will add a picture with the trim around the outside and the handles sewn on when I am finished with it.

Uncle Jeremy

came to visit!

It has been a while since the kids saw J.’s bother so it was really nice to have him come over for a bit.  While he was here, he and J. talked about all the video games they remembered palying together as kids and we wound up downloading 2 games on the Wii…”Super C” and the original “Paper Mario”.  One undermentioned cool feature of the Wii is that you can download older games instantly for $5-$10.  They have lots of the titles J. and I used to play on the N64 before we were married.  Much cheaper than hitting a movie with 5 people.

My daughter slept in a bit, so she wound up taking a bath during all the game playing and created this winter scene.  The things at the bottom are a house, a tree, an ornament, a present, a snowman, a seal jumping, and a girl playing, The 4 shapes in the sky are planes.  Wrinting her name.   Hee hee.

Computer Games

The kids play lots of website and disc games on the computer and I don’t often think to take a picture or write them down.  My son asked me to take a picture of his screen today afer he completed Level 1 of “Jumpstart World Explorers” so I did.  And thus this post. 

My daughter has gotten into the Zoombinis games lately which are really fun mathematical reasoning games and has also been playing on Sesame Street, Webkins, and other sites on the computer.  Headsprout is still going strong here too- she is at level 38 and my son is on 71.  They continue to print out new books and read them to me at night.

Yesterday was a Fun Day

But I don’t have any pictures.

We went to Chuck E. Cheese for the homeschool kids’ birthdays for November/December and had a great time seeing everyone and getting to meet the newest member of our group…our friend’s new baby girl born 2 weeks ago.  Her big brother and my son are good friends and they were glad to see each other again.  After much begging and pleading, the boys decided that he should come home with us and have a sleep-over, his first ever not at his Grandma’s house.  Everything went smoothly…no fighting or homesickness.  I hope his parents got a bit of a break 🙂

Today, we are off to gymnastics.


Is harder than it looks.

Basically you get 12 pieces of your color to try to earn points with. You need to get 5 in a row in any direction or get a single stack higher than 3 pieces by rolling a die that tells you where you are allowed to play. The game ends if anyone “topples” the board which is balanced on a pole. The kids and I played. My son “toppled” it when he had 2 points and my daughter had 3 points. Ummmm…. I had none.

The marker in my daughters hand was for her doing the scorekeeping (at her request) 🙂

Carrom…kind of, and Playing

While we were waiting for friends to come over and play today, the kids and I played a few rounds of a game we made up.  Basically we used our Carrom board with marbles instead of Carrom pieces and shot for the pockets.  Each marble in was worth a point.  It worked pretty well and my son has actually turned into a very gracious game player over the last few months.  No sulking or complaining at all…just playing for fun.  Thank goodness!  I have been looking forward to the day we could play more games without sadness being the most likely ending.

Here is the board in action.  (We will be getting the real pieces and shooters for X-mas.  This was a thrifted find last year and didn’t come with everything.)

On the topic of sportsmanship, we also played a game last night that my son got last Christmas, called “Thingamabot”.  It is a quick, fun game where you get to make up silly words for the “bots” as they are turned over and then must remember their names when they turn up again.  J. won the first round and my son insisted on a rematch.  He trounced us all soundly.  Here he is counting out his cards to see by how much.  He had 37.  J had 4.  I had 1.

Here is a close up so you can see some of the cards:

*Note to those interested in games to play with kids.  This one is great because you don’t need to handicap yourself.  Your ailing memory will do it for you, LOL.   Especially if you play more than once in a sitting!

Reading and Writing

My daughter is really loving learning how to read and is now taking some of the words she knows and making books with them. I have noticed her starting to use more lowercase letters lately. I am guessing it is because of “Headsprout”. She is up to episode 30. My son is on 62 now. I think they will both probably finish the program. They are still liking the characters and they read the books they print off to me every night. My daughter is still coloring them all too.

Here is her latest book.

“Reef” and “fish” were her new words.</