Saturday, November 28, 2009

Visit with MaMa and GrandPa Jimmy

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Each year, Tommy leaves the house and does our black friday shopping while we sleep. Then, he returns and while he sleeps - we do our Christmas decorating.

Typically the kids play and investigate the Christmas decorations as I pull them out. This year I was determined that they would do all the decorating. From putting the stockings on the mantel, to the advent nativity wreath on the table, everything.

Here we go:

Mikaela fluffing her purple tree for her bedroom - she decorated it with pearls and princess ornaments

Xander decorating his tree - he used sports ornaments and scooby doo ones
Xman putting together the train track that goes around the tree in the dining room

Mikaela hanging the wreath on the door as you enter our home

Xander decorating our advent Christmas tree - We put up a fake pre-lit tree in our dining room. I HAVE to have a real tree for the living room (which is a whole nother post.......). This tree has purple and white ornaments and nativity ornaments only. We put our advent wreath candles in the dining room - and enjoy both!

Taking a break and reading the Christmas books
Xander's favorite The Little People pop up Christmas book

Back working on their trees again

My favorite - yes, we even own Christmas dress up stuff! I have a picture of Mikael wearing this mask every year since she was organized mother would be able to find them and post them all at the same time.......
Xander putting our Christmas books out onto the bookshelf. Yes, we have two small shelves FULL of Christmas themed books to enjoy! We put our bean bag next to the shelf and it will be our reading center for the next month.
Last year I had a brilliant idea that the kids could make wreaths for their bedroom doors. I bought wreaths, ornaments and tinsel/beads at 90% off during the post-Christmas sales - and then what a surprise when I found them this year, and remembered what I wanted to do with them (and no those two things did not happen at the same time). These are our wreaths before we did too much to them!
Mikaela wrapping red pearls around her wreath

Xander carrying his wreath to his room
Xander attaching super hero ornaments to his

Xman's finished wreath!

Mikaela working on her Christmas activity book while I cooked breakfast for dinner

Xander coloring in his Peanuts Christmas coloring book

Xander decorating his window with train clings
Mikaela decorated her window with snowman clings
Mikaela's finished wreath - sporting Hannah Montana ornaments and fairies

We're not quite done decorating ......but we made a good dent!

Happy Thanksgiving

A glimpse at Thanksgiving.......

Tommy playing guitar with our nephew Wyatt

Tommy's approach to "keeping up with the little one"

Tommy and the kids
Sweet Mikaela
Annual Thanksgiving picture - Tommy, his dad, his sister, our nephews (Cooper and Wyatt) and our kids
Tommy's dad (the "BearPa"), his girlfriend, Ms. Rhonda and all the kids
The cousins
Potentially our Christmas card photo:)
So much to be grateful for

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Good Intentions

We left the house this morning with the intention of running a few errands, using a few coupons to get things we needed and a gift for an upcoming birthday party.

Then we were going to enjoy a movie since we haven't been to one in a LONG time.

I had already vetoed a movie in the "real" theater after glancing at movie prices and the matinee cut off time. Come on people - anything past 3:00 is now not a matinee? What happened to movies BEFORE 6:00 being a matinee? And $7 for each of my kids - I am not thrilled about paying that for them to go to the jumpy place, but at least then they come home tired!

So - we were going to go to the dollar theater and see Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs.

Each errand took extensively longer than the errand before it. At Kohls, they fought over who was going to get to scan the birthday gift we were buying (Xander won - the gift is for a party he is attending next week). After he spent forever choosing the perfect transformer, we got to the register to find out that it was an extra 20% off today - and thus made the item not cost enough for me to use my $10 off any $10 purchase coupon. Back to toys, pick out additional fun toy, new argument over the scanner (he got to choose last time)......lather, rinse, repeat.

Lunch at the Varsity. Xander, dressed in a red polo and his standard black blazer was so *entertaining* that the young lady sitting near us devoted all of her attention to him instead of the young man she was dining with. I felt like we should offer to pay him back for her chili dog.......Mikaela never quite got over the fact that there were no cartoons on the TV in room number one. There are ALWAYS cartoons on the TV in room number one she kept repeating. Mikaela, honey, game day in Athens......there is nothing but football on any TV at the Varsity.

Borders. Fairly simple errand - Xander chose a Captain Underpants book. I coughed and bought it. Not my favorite choice of literature, but since he sat staring at each page of the book QUIETLY for the ten minutes it took me to help Mikaela choose our next home school novel - I probably would have bought him anything! Thank you Borders for your 30% off and your lovely borders bucks that paid for almost all of both our new books!

And our last errand, Old Navy. I started with customer service to make sure they and I were on the same page regarding my coupon. We weren't.....but we got there. How can you have a coupon advertisement on your website, and post it on your company facebook page....and still not know about it? I will say that they were at least polite and anxious to help me. I had 3 coupons so we each got to pick out one new thing - Mikaela new pants, me new pajama bottoms, and Xman new Star Wars t-shirt - each item an additional 50% off its already marked down price. Yeah me! I always print the same number of coupons as people that are going shopping with me. That way each kid could check out with a coupon and not violate the "one per person" rule.

Now, I am all excited (or atleast acting as such as we are sitting in the chuck e cheese parking lot and there is no way in.....the very hot place......that we are going in there on a Saturday afternoon on a game day weekend) - hey kiddos - now its time for the movie.

Mikaela: I don't want to see Ice Age.

Xander: I want to see Ice Age.

20 minutes later we came to the compromise of each kiddo picking out their own movie to buy at Sam's club and calling it a day to go home!

Mikaela chose Parent Trap (the new version) and Xman picked Ironman. Total price almost the same as three dollar movie tickets and a tub of popcorn!

Then we drove home - me with two kids who have pestering each other all day.

Somewhere between Oconee county and Monroe we pulled over. For a full 7 minutes. 7. Because yes, as I was fuming about the screaming in the back seat - I was watching the clock. It took the children 7 minutes to realize we had stopped, pulled off the road and that other people were still driving.

Now, I have everyone's attention. We are all acutely aware of how crazy mommy is about to get!

Though I will share that my favorite of all arguments occurred just as we began to exit for home.

M: "I can tell we're almost home."

X: "How?"

M: "I can READ - duh - the sign says exit highway 138"

X: after a minute, "I can read too - I know we're almost home."

M: "What can you read?"

X: "Chick Fil A. McDonalds. Walmart. Blockbuster. Zaxby's. I can read the signs. Look there's the Tractor Store. Booger."

M: "Where did you read booger?"

X: "It's on my hand. If I can see it, I can read it."

Well,.......can you really argue with that logic?