Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas morning

Most years we do our own thing in the early morning, opening gifts & stockings from Santa at home with the kids. Then we head over to my mom's around 10:30 and get together with our immediate family (my mom, step-dad Pete, and all their kids & families) to have breakfast and open presents.

My parents often use this morning to fill us in on what family trip they've planned for the year. In the past we've been to Mazatlan, Disneyland (twice), Hawaii, Mariner's spring training, on a houseboat in B.C., and on a Mexican cruise. Yes, we know how lucky we are. They claimed that it was just too difficult to put together a trip this year, because of everyone's schedules, but I wasn't buying it (and John is my witness!). This year we found out we're headed to a lakehouse near Chelan, just after Labor Day weekend. Matt & Jeff will likely bring along their water toys (a boat & jet skiis), and we'll dig out Liam's lifejacket so he can join in on the fun.

After breakfast we all gather around the tree so Pete can play Santa - with a helper, of course. I can remember waaayyy back when Alison, Emily & Jacob (who are now 20, 17 & 16) were the elves, helping pass out presents. How fun it is to see my son get a turn! And the women in the family (which now includes Alison!) plan their shopping trip for next week, to go invade Alderwood Mall for anything Santa missed, and just spend some fun time together. In case I don't say it enough, we feel incredibly blessed by our family.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Sharing the Love - thanks Tiff!

I was tagged by Tiffani, and am now supposed to blog/admit to five addictions or obsessions that I have. Let's see...

1. Facebook. Totally addicted. What an amazingly simple way to keep up with everyone you've ever met in your entire life!

2. Sleep. Maybe it's because I have a baby/alarm clock who goes off at random hours, but I snatch up every opportunity my husband gives me to sleep in.

3. One Tree Hill. I didn't watch this show until just a few weeks ago, it's a silly trashy teen drama. But I caught the first episode on SoapNet and have been watching it ever since, and episodes air 5 days a week (thank goodness for DVR). I'm still not caught up to current episodes. But eventually I'll get caught up and then have to watch it once a week like everyone else.

4. Family time. Can't get enough of it. I still call my mom almost every day, just to chat. I'm blessed with an amazing family.

5. Homemade presents. Thankfully Christmas has passed now, so I'll get a breather. But I had so much fun making homemade gifts this year that I'm keeping an eye out for fun new "recipes" & mixes to try out.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow... and then some!

Every year, John wishes for a white Christmas. Most years, the closest we get is soggy and wet. He must have wished extra hard this year, because we ended up with about two feet of snow over Christmas eve & Christmas day. Here are some pictures of what we found at our house, before we drove through it up to Grandma Cindy's to spend the night so we wouldn't miss out on any of the Christmas festivities with family. The picture with the measuring stick was on the top of my van.

Christmas Eve Tradition

Like many families, we have our own unique Christmas traditions. Every Christmas Eve we all go to my grandparents' house in Lynden ("Oma" & "Opa" to most of my cousins & my kids). This year the challenge was in getting there - it had snowed 6-8 inches in our northern part of the county that day! We all carpooled our way there, with some gracious drivers making multiple trips across town.

We have a soup dinner with the whole extended family who are in town for the holidays, then open stockings assembled by the women in the family. The stockings include such random items as kitchen sponges, golf tees, crazy glue, shampoo samples and, always, socks. And then, of course, we bombard each other with the wrapping paper. It may sound silly to those of you who aren't a part of the Fisher clan, but to us it's just Christmas Eve.

Christmas Cookies

Every year Liam and I bake & decorate cookies together before Christmas. It's been a tradition of ours since he was probably 1-1/2 years old. They may not be pretty, by the time they get every single type of sprinkles piled up on top of the other, but we have fun. And somehow they always taste good enough to disappear well before Christmas.
With the addition of Sara to our lives, we've had to adjust how we do some things. Last week we went to Grandma's, and invited cousins over to help, so that Grandma could help out with the kids. I brought most of the ingredients to Grandma's and mixed it all together. Then Liam and cousin Jaidyn helped cut out Christmas shapes from the dough. My cousin Jack, who is just two months older than Liam, joined us to help with the decorations. And of course, everyone got to sample one (or more) when we were done. True to tradition, even though they were left at Grandma's house, they all managed to disappear before Christmas again.

Thanks Grandma Cindy, for letting us move to your place this year. Thanks Jack & Jaidyn (and Uncle Matt) for helping us decorate. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Careful, Santa's Watching!

Is it just me, or do other parents hear more "creative" excuses for misbehavior as we get closer to Christmas? Liam likes to use our big water cooler jugs as drums, jungle gyms and anything else he can dream up. We're okay with it, as long as he isn't climbing on them.

John and I were in the living room with Sara tonight, and suddenly Liam crashes in from the kitchen, tipping over the full (and fortunately, closed) water cooler from the kitchen. I asked him what happened, and he says "It followed me from the kitchen." So I dig a little deeper.

"How did it follow you?"
"It attached to my leg."
"And how did it attach itself to your leg?"
"Well when I was climbing on it, I think maybe my pajama leg got stuck."

It's okay buddy. Santa's all done shopping, you've got one or two gifts under the tree, and this elf does NOT want to go back to the mall again to return anything. Not that I'll let him in on the secret, and spoil my best current excuse to prompt good behavior: "Remind me Liam, does Santa bring gifts to good little boys, or naughty ones?"

Monday, December 1, 2008

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Christmas snuck up on us this year. With Thanksgiving just a few days ago, we nearly forgot that Santa was coming to our little town tonight.

Liam and I were on a quick run to the only grocery store in town, when the cashier asked if we were on our way to see Santa. We arrived at the city park just in time to see Santa pull up on a fire engine covered with Christmas lights, to the sound of the high school band's holiday tunes. There was a pretty good line, so Liam decided Sara needed to meet Santa tonight, since she'd never seen him before. So we headed home, rounded up Daddy & Sara and hurried back to the park. Daddy & Liam waited in line in the rain while Sara and I hung out in a covered area.

All this time Sara was babbling and grinning at everyone, happy as could be to be watching all the smiling kids around her. That is, until we set her on Santa's lap. But being parents, we did take a picture to document this precious moment in her life. Liam has an identical one from his first meeting with Santa.

John snapped the picture quickly and I grabbed Sara so Liam could chat with Santa for a while. For those of you wondering, he asked for Magic Treehouse books, and warm fuzzy footed glow-in-the-dark pajamas. One of Santa's helpers gave me a goody bag for Sara, and she immediately started cooing and smiling again. Good times.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pumpkin Yumminess

Liam is my assistant every time I bake or cook. He helps me read the recipe, measure things out and dump them into the bowl, stir, and occasionally crack an egg or two. I like to think it's only because he wants to be helpful, but I think I've realized the real reason: he gets to lick the beater when we're done. Daddy gets to lick the other one because, well, he's the Daddy. Then I sneak a few licks from the bowl while it all cooks. Everyone gets their own bit of the batter. But now we're going to have to re-think it our division of the wealth - Sara wants in.
I was making pumpkin cupcakes tonight for Thanksgiving, and gave Sara a little taste off my finger while Liam was inhaling the batter off the beater... but she decided she wanted a little more than a taste. For the first time, she did the sign for "more"... and how could I not reward her for that with another taste? And another... and maybe one more... Just wait until I put the cream cheese frosting on them tomorrow morning! :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Big 'ol Cornucopia of Thankfulness

My friends have been diligent in blogging daily this past week about things they're thankful for. Between Sara's teething & colds, plus trying to work on homemade Christmas gifts, my schedule hasn't allowed me to sit down and blog each day. And seeing as I'm working late tomorrow, Sara's still sick, and somewhere before Turkey Day I need to bake & frost some cupcakes, I figured I'd better sit down tonight and reflect on the abundance of people who have blessed my life, and for whom I am so thankful (even if I didn't dedicate separate days to each of them). :)

My husband is amazing. And fortunately, he doesn't need to hear it every day. Because some days all he hears from me is "Can you grab me another diaper?", or "It's Liam's bedtime, can you tuck him in?" But I have been so blessed with an incredible partner, best friend, co-conspirator and one awesome daddy as my husband. John works so hard every day to make it possible for me to stay home, and even agreed to live in a barn with me (it is, really!) so we can make it work. For better or for worse, I'm so lucky to have him.

My kids are my two most favorite little people in the world, and I'm so lucky to be called "Mom" by them. Well okay, by Liam. Sara just clings to me in her special way, and I'll take that as "Mommy" for now. Liam is such a loving, smitten big brother, and such a big helper for me. He has the sweetest heart, and I adore taking him out on my own on the rare occasions we get (Tonight it was a quick trip to the grocery store, but I got filled in on his day at school on the way). Sara, my sweet little hugger, is so much fun. She keeps me on my toes, and I'm excited to see her little personality continue to develop.

My parents are such an incredible support. Grandma Cindy & Grandpa Pete have always been there, cheering me on even when if they don't 100% agree with my decisions. My mom has grown into one of my closest friends, and I'm so lucky to have her so close (and so available for grandkid drop-offs!).

My in-laws, too, have always been so supportive. Never once, from them or my parents, did I get the "So, when are we going to be grandparents?" talk, even though we took nearly 5 years to have kids. I was only able to work because grandparents (and great-grandparents) offered to take time with the kids, which has been an amazing gift for Liam, too, and now Sara.

My brothers have (mostly) grown out of their "pain in my neck", "tagalong" status. :) You are both so incredible with my kids. Liam thinks he has the coolest uncles, and no, I don't think he actually has a favorite. Even if I don't say it, I hope you both know how much you are loved, by me and by my family.

My extended family rocks. They just do. I am blessed with a close family, both physically and emotionally. I love that Liam & Sara get to grow up with these amazing influences in their lives regularly. And Aunt Linda, thanks for the opportunity (and flexibility!) of working with you.

My friends are still such an important part of my life, even if I'm a bit negligent in keeping in touch these days. Laura, my far-away friend, I can chat with you for just a few minutes with a few weeks in between, and we always get each other. I hope we can actually chat in person some time soon. Holly, I miss our more frequent visits at your place, but Sara will be chasing the other kids around soon, I hope. Thank you for answering my silly "girly" questions, and humoring me with the "boy" ones the first time around! Tracie, Stephana, Tarah & Tiffani, you girls are so much fun to connect with, and are such good baby jugglers. Remind me to bring my camera to the next girls' night! For my whole network of friends, I'm so grateful.

There's just so much more I could write - I'm so incredibly thankful - but heck, I'm also thankful for a chance to get to bed before 11pm. Love you all!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

A Whole New Level of Excitement

We have had a baby before. You'd think we would remember how one day, suddenly and without much warning, your child can reach a whole new level of things they shouldn't be touching. But we were not prepared the first time, and here we go again.

In just the past week or so, Sara's much more comfortable and sturdy standing up and moving around. Her crawling is nearing warp speed, and she's even attempting to walk (though fortunately, she's still needing to hold onto hands for this achievement... unfortunately for our backs, though).
I was nice enough to bring home 60 shiny new toys from Costco for Sara today. And here I thought I was getting granola bars for John & Liam's lunches, silly me.
One of Sara's favorite new games is to completely empty something (diaper bag, toy box, whatever), then selectively put things back in. It entertains her and gives me a moment of quiet (without the panic that can sometimes accompany the quiet moments heard by mothers).
She's also started with peekaboo, which I tried to capture on film. I just can't believe she's getting so big so quickly. At least we won't have to carry her around much longer. :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Kid Tested. Mom Approved.

This year we're trying to be creative (aka, "thrifty") and do homemade gifts for Christmas. We've decided that the best gift we can give ourselves and our kids is avoiding going into debt (again) to get friends & family gifts they may not even really like. So we're making almost everything this year, and my kids are my guinea pigs.

Tonight they got to try out homemade bubble bath. I didn't quite get the scent right, but boy, does it make lots of bubbles! And that's really the goal, right? Lots of big frothy bubbles that cover your toes and stick to your face, and clean smelling kids. Thanks again, Liam, for testing out the face-sticking part again. And again. And again. Just to make sure.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Help Me Decide...

Time for family pictures for our Christmas card. It's down to two photos vying for the top spot. Any advice? They're still open for cropping, etc... but I just can't decide.

On Santa's "Nice" List

I'm taking a cue from Tiff and writing about "When Things Go Right." We have moments of pure chaos in our house, and kids testing their limits (and ours). But then there are the moments when you see that you're doing things right, and shaping your kids into pretty special people.

I volunteered at the Book Fair at Liam's school on Tuesday. Liam had earned $15 of Book Fair money by selling butter braids in a PTO fundraiser, and I told him he could get whatever he wanted with his money. I figured it would be a good math and money lesson, and we could add up each of the books he found for himself together.

Liam walked through all of the bookshelves, looking carefully at everything. Finally he brought me a toddler counting book, and said he wanted to get it for his cousin Jaidyn for Christmas (act surprised, uncle Matt!). I told him it would be $13, and he wouldn't have money for any other books for himself. He said that was all he wanted to get, so I offered to split the cost with him, since we usually pay for Jaidyn's gifts. We worked together to figure out what half of $13 was, and that it meant he had around $8 left to get something for himself. Instead he found a baby book for his sister Sara, and insisted that was all that he wanted to get.

Kinda makes up for the battle of the wills he had with Daddy the previous night. Almost.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Crossing Holly off the Christmas List...

Friends play nice. Once upon a time, I considered Holly to be a friend. Friends don't make each other take photographs of their messy houses. Why do you think I live in Sumas? By default, I have 15 minutes notice before anyone gets here, and no one is ever "in the neighborhood" because we're not on the way to anywhere. :)

Holly tagged me with the job of dropping everything, and taking a picture of where I blog, and my living room. Well where I blog is my living room, and it's also the dumping ground for everything and everyone in our house. Fortunately, I had one kid-free hour today and used most of it to clean. But (as you can see) I skipped the desk. We just moved it into the living room from the "office", which is now the "playroom". You can see I'm having troubles figuring out where to put all the paperwork that used to be in the office, yet keeping it out of reach of one increasingly portable drooly mouth. John is crashing on the couch from a long day at work. (At least I didn't take a picture of you when you were actually sleeping, honey! Love you!) Yes,t he TV is on. How else do you think I was able to blog?
I know I'm supposed to tag other people on here to make them document the disarray of their living rooms, but (1) I don't know anyone else who blogs who hasn't already been victimized, and (2) I'm nice. Love you Holly, sleep tight tonight!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

No-Guilt Pumpkin Cheesecake. No Kidding.

I'm gearing up for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and all of the gorging that goes with it. I've been nominated by my family to make one of the desserts for Thanksgiving dinner. I'm told that my not-so-healthy desserts balance the sugar-free, fat-free ones brought by others in my family. I might make some pumpkin cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, but may decide to make my most-requested dessert. A few years ago I found a delicious, healthy pumpkin cheesecake recipe that even my husband says tastes like the yummy fat-filled ones. I think it's the pumpkin flavor that drowns out any diet-like taste. So I thought I'd share that recipe on here, and challenge any other blogging moms to post their favorite holiday dish.
It looks like there are a ton of directions, but it's really simple if you've ever made a cheesecake before. Otherwise I probably wouldn't tackle it. :) So here it is...

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs (about 7 big graham crackers)
3 tablespoons apple jelly
4 (8-oz.) pkg. fat-free cream cheese, softened
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2/3 cup sugar
5 eggs
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 to 3 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
2 tablespoons brandy, if desired (I've never tried this)
1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin
1 cup frozen fat-free whipped topping, if desired
nutmeg, if desired

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. Coat sides only with 2 tablespoons of the graham cracker crumbs. In medium bowl, combine remaining 1 cup graham cracker crumbs and apple jelly, mix well. Press in bottom of coated pan.
2. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-10 minutes or until set. Cool 5 minutes. Refrigerate 5 minutes or until completely cooled.
3. Meanwhile, in large bowl, beat cream cheese at medium speed until smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in brown sugar and sugar until smooth. At low speed, add eggs one at a time, beating just until blended.
4. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine flour, pumkin pie spice, brandy & pumpkin; mix well. Gradually add to cream cheese mixture; beat until smooth. Pour over partially baked crust.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F for 1 hour 20 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes (80-90 minutes) or until center is set. Turn oven off; open oven door at least 4 inches. Let cheesecake sit in oven for 30 minutes. With sharp knife, loosen cheesecake from sides of pan. Cool in pan on wire rack for 2 hours or until completely cooled. Refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight.
6. Serve cheesecake wedges with 1 tablespoon whipped topping, lightly sprinkled with nutmeg. Makes 16 servings.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I am Fabulous (too)!


I was tagged by Holly's blog. And now I've tagged you! You must copy the button, (go to this blog for the link: then blog about why you are fabulous. So here are my reasons:

I love my friends & family with my whole heart. I've learned as I get older that it's okay to tell even my pesky little brothers that they're loved, and remind my husband & kids daily how much they're adored.

I'm a good cook, and an even better baker. When I do it. :)

I can be silly with my kids. I'm currently having a Lego battle with my son, spraying big Legos out of our mouths towards each other, and not thinking about the mess afterwards. Yes, it looks just as goofy as it sounds. And I'm watching Sara belly laugh at us both.

I'm crafty, but in a good way. We're making (which we all know means I'm making) homemade gifts this year, to skip going into debt yet again and to focus on the real meaning of Christmas.

and per Liam, when asked why his Mommy is fabulous:
"She had Sara in her belly."
"She makes the right decisions."
"I got born by her."
"She is brave in the dark."
"She fixes me things that I can try to eat, and I like most of them."
(How can you argue with that?)

and my husband says:
"Because you keep me grounded. When I'm not, you point it out to me." and "When anyone asks you for a favor, you do it if at all possible."
Okay, what he said first was "Because you're my wife, the mother of my children." I told him I couldn't type that with a straight face. Yes, sometimes we're just that cheesy.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Dial "O" for Old

I think it's your child's job to make you feel old. Liam is very good at his job.
We usually just use our cordless phone at home, but we hooked up one of our old corded ones tonight. Liam asked if he could call Grandma Cindy, and we said yes. He picked the phone up off the receiver, looked it over, then asked us, "How do I push talk?"
Wonder what he'd do with a rotary phone. Whew, maybe I AM old!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Big Spender

Liam has always been one to try to negotiate his way out of things he doesn't like. "Mommy, can I be done with my soup if I eat four more carrots?" "Daddy, if I put my clothes away, will you read a book with me?"
Tonight it was time for Liam to put on pajamas, but he was having too much fun playing a game on the computer. He wanted to be allowed to play on the computer again after getting on his pajamas. We saw several of his usual negotiation tactics: whining, then begging, even some waterworks with repetitive "please"s. Then he pulled a new card out of the deck, hugging my arm and saying, "Pleeeease Mommy? I'll give you most of my money."
You know those moments when as a parent, you're just not supposed to laugh? Usually I can contain it, but this was just too much for me. I laughed so hard that there were tears in my eyes. John joined in, and as hard as he tried not to, so did Liam. Trying to bribe me was enough, but it was even funnier to me that he wouldn't give up all of his piggy bank money, just most of it. Maybe he does have a future in negotiations after all.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat!

Today is the one day of the year when we teach our kids to take candy from strangers, as long as they threaten them with malicious mischief first. I guess that's better than Christmas, when we encourage them to sit on the lap of a big bearded stranger.
After Liam was good and sugared up at his "Pumpkin Party" at school, we headed out in costumes: Liam the monkey, Sara the banana, and Mommy the animal trainer (it's my usual job - no need for a costume).

Rhonda at the Trib had a big goody bag waiting, then we headed out to Grandpa Bill & Grandma Elnora's. On the way, the monkey spilled his chocolate milk... but Grandma was ready with the stain stick and swiped it all away. Then Liam sneezed with a mouth full of chicken nuggets, and (as we have taught him) made sure to aim for the inside of his elbow. Thanks again, Grandma, for clean-up #2. Their neighborhood nearly filled up trick-or-treat bag #1 (Yes, he got so many goodies we had to have two bags. Don't worry, Daddy will help him dispose of the candy.).

Then it was off to Grandma Cindy & Grandpa Pete's, where Liam got goodies too big to fit in his bags, and Sara got a container of Cheerios (yay!) to entertain her and keep Liam busy feeding her while we drove to the next place... but first we got pictures with Princess Jaidyn.

We popped in at the home office of Randy Fleming Photography ( for the Halloween open house. Professional pics of our duo, to be posted up on the website tomorrow under a special link. Great promotional idea, Randy! Finally we headed to the Harvest Festival at NCCTK where the monkey was fed yet MORE candy and goodies, and the banana was happy to chew on some non-edible goodies and hang out with Elias & Anna for a bit. And Liam got to hug on Princess Jaidyn a bit more.
John offered to drive the kids home if I'd take his truck. Knowing how long the night had been and how tired/wired/sugared they were, I jumped at the chance for 20 minutes of uninterrupted music. Now they're all tucked in and the bags have been properly raided. You know, to make sure there's nothing dangerous in there. Like sugar.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The More Things Change...

Liam has always been a pretty healthy eater. Because he spent a couple hours every week at each grandparents' home, he was exposed to a variety of different foods. But when he finds something he really likes, he dives right in. One of my favorite toddler-aged pictures of Liam is the one attached in the blue chair, when he went gonzo on a plate of spaghetti at my mom's. He was about 15 months old. Liam is now almost 5 1/2 years old. We had homemade lasagna tonight, and I'm attaching a picture of the aftermath. See if you can spot any similarities.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Cheeri-Oh My!

Finding time for a shower can be difficult with an 8-month-old around the house. I've tried putting Sara into her exersaucer in the bathroom, but she screams when I'm behind the shower curtain. Her own bath time is one of her favorite things, but mine? Not so much.

So some days the only time I can get in a shower is when Liam hangs out in the living room with Sara, safely in her exersaucer. Usually I put down a few Cheerios to keep her occupied, and give Liam permission to give her a few while I'm gone. When I popped back in today before getting into the shower, I learned that I need to be a bit more specific in my definition of "a few". Though this does explain why she's so content to have me disappear and leave her with Liam...

After we'd gone out to run errands, I left the kids with John while I brought in groceries. Like a moth to a flame, those Cheerios called Sara back again... and she climbed up into the bottom of her exersaucer to eat her fill. Liam started hauling some of the Cheerios away in his plastic dump truck, but you can see she found that, too. Oh well, at least they're not a sugary cereal!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Movie Stars

We finally got around to downloading our home videos onto YouTube so that family & friends can check in on our kiddos, especially those who aren't in the area and are unable to make it to Liam's thrill-a-moment soccer games. I cannot recommend our video camera more strongly - it's a Flip digital video camera, made by Pure Digital Technologies. It retails for not much more than $120 or so, is amazingly easy to use (both Liam AND I could figure it out, with no instruction manual), and then plugs directly into your computer to download videos. Plus it's about the size of small-ish digital camera, so we can easily grab it & go.
Enough free promotion. If you want to check out our videos, go to and search for "4swedbergs". Happy hunting!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Chili & Pumpkin Guts

Thanks Gordon & Tracie, for having us over this weekend to play in your barn, sample yummy chili, and dig up pumpkin guts with our kiddos (and our friends & their kiddos)! We always look forward to a party at their place, because we know it will be entertaining... if for no other reason than to hear over a dozen kids blowing their whistles at one time (thanks again Gordon & Tracie. Liam's whistle has "disappeared" somewhere...).

Seriously though, it was great to get out, visit with friends, and eat our fill of a variety of chilis (7 different kinds!). Plus we got to carve Liam's pumpkin without much mess to clean up - their pigs took care of that goop, with a warning to the kids to watch their fingers lest they be confused with a pumkin seed.

And now we know that Sara is a fan of cornbread, especially Holly's. I didn't even need to clean up her mess, because Tracie's pups were ready & waiting for all of Sara's crumbs.

We feel really blessed to have such a great group of friends, whose offspring pair up so well with our kiddos. They even offer to tote around my littlest one (see pictures) so I can have my hands free for a meal for once. What a fun, loud, crazy night. Maybe Liam will catch up on his sleep before school tomorrow.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Small Town, Small Internet?

Okay, so I just told my husband that I'd started a blog but hadn't told anyone yet because I wanted to play with it a while first. Then I peek this evening and I already have two comments! So much for keeping it to myself. :) That's what I get for signing up to follow your blogs, girls! See you both on Friday - Holly, can you bring both the original "Gifts for Giving" and your play-doh recipe? :)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Pumpkins, Soccer & Fishing for Cat Food

It must be fall. The whole family has the sniffles, so what do we do today? On our way to Liam's soccer game (aka, standing in the cold watching four purple shirts huddle around the ball & kick blindly) we went to pick out a pumpkin at Boxx's Berry Farm. Grandpa & Grandma S. joined us too, so it was okay that I forgot my camera. Grandma S. was armed with two. If you know her, this is no surprise.

We boarded a mini tractor for the short ride out to the patch (Sara's favorite part- she sang the whole way out & back). Liam, of course, wanted to pick out a pumpkin that was at least his size & weight. So I coached Daddy into talking him into a "perfectly shaped" (and significantly lighter) pumpkin. We needed to get a pumpkin for a chili feed / pumpkin carving party we're going to on Friday. This should be interesting because my husband, wonderful spider-catcher, cat poo-scooper, heavy-lifter that he is, has a gag reflex with certain things, pumpkin guts being one of those (This was also part of my argument for a smaller pumpkin - I'm not scooping out a ginormous pumpkin all by myself, because Liam will lose interest quickly). We also got a few of the token family-in-the-pumpkin-patch photos, which I'll attempt to post on here.

Then it was off to soccer. Liam had a blast, burned off a bunch of energy, and Sara got a quick nap in the car. I honestly think soccer at the kindergarten/first grade level is way more entertaining to watch than the older kids, and I love that most of the parents on Liam's team have the same enjoyment of this as we do. I love that the kids' attention spans are so short that they literally forget which goal is theirs, or they will be running with the ball on a breakaway and simply lose interest right in front of the goal. Today Liam was getting ready to do the kick-off and one of his teammates asked (as the whistle was blowing) if he could kick off the ball instead. So Liam yelled over to the coach (after the whistle had blown and the other team was awaiting the ball) that he wanted to trade, and the two boys did a slow-motion kick back and forth, traded spots, then the other boy kicked off the ball. Maybe you have to be a parent to appreciate it, but I was loving it. And I think my kid's the only one who squeals with joy up and down the field. Makes him easy to spot in a sea of purple jerseys!

So after a long day out & about, we were finally back at home and settling down. John & Liam were cuddled up in our bed in pajamas, watching a quick cartoon before bedtime stories. Sara & I were in her room, and I was checking through her clothes to see what she'd outgrown (it happens fast at 7 months old!). I'd child-proofed her room earlier this month, but then spent a day last week cleaning out all the items to go to goodwill or consignment from one corner. As I was finishing up the shirt drawer, I looked over to see Sara in this very corner, chewing with a big grin on her face. I popped her mouth open and fished around with my finger... and pulled out a piece of cat food. YUM. Sorry kiddo, we're working on solid foods, but not of the feline variety. I think that comes sometime after citrus.

It's waaayyy past bedtime and I expect to be woken by my drippy-nosed baby. I'll write again when time (and my family!) allows.