Monday, December 29

Christmas Time is HERE!!

-It's taking longer to compose a post because something happened to the laptop I use and now I have trouble logging in to get pictures uploaded-

We've been christmasing since the middle of December when we did lunch with our friends, the Lettenbergers. So even though the kids are starting to understand Christmas/Jesus/Santa, it's hard for us to explain why we give and get gifts on multiple days. Of course all the kids played until it was obvious we needed to go and the adults managed a little grown-up time as well!

Last weekend we made the trek to Wausau for the Bonin Christmas, always celebrated the weekend before, rotating to different houses. Historically, this weekend brings snow - some years warranting a midnight shovel party! But of course it has been unseasonably warm, and we had no trouble with the 3 hour long travel. It was a fun family sleepover and Kelsey and Drew were able to spend some precious time with their big cousins.

Then we did 5 Christmases in 3 days; three big ones and two small ones. We just love getting to see the great-grandparents and sharing the kids with them. Our kids are becoming more comfortable playing with family they sometimes only see once a year.

We had a blessed holiday season and it was quiet the experience watching the kids take it all in and share their love with all of our family! They have been singing carols around the house - which reminds me that Kelsey and Drew had a sweet little Christmas program at school where the preschoolers did their own story of the birth of Jesus - our kids were the stable cows! They had costumes, props, and sang a couple songs. Then we had a birthday party for Jesus in the lunchroom before starting the Christmas break. Craig is home now till Jan. 5th with the kids and we'll see how fast he purges the old toys to make room for the new stuff!!

Our Cows!
The whole class

Cutest nephew ever in his Christmas outfit

Pre-church snack

Opening gifts Christmas morning at Aunt Tara's

Looking at their loot at Grandma's

Learning how to use her new roller skates! Brings back
the memories:)
Little Benson making sure Tara puts the batteries in right

Thursday, December 11

Camera Shy

You will see that most of this post contains pictures of Drew. Some days Kelsey just doesn't do paparazzi. She's also not been feeling the best. This winter cold is dragging on a little longer than I'd like.

St. Nick

So last weekend we went to my step-dad's rural volunteer fire station for a pancake breakfast with Santa. Last year, the kids hid behind me and cried when I asked if they wanted to say hi to him. Of course this year I wasn't expecting anything magical when they saw Santa but Drew was in heaven! He's been talking about the big guy for a while so I think he was ready to meet him. Kelsey's first impression was, "maybe later, mom". I didn't push it. Drew was ready to sit in his lap, big toothy grin. Santa asked him about 3 times what he wanted for Christmas. Finally he said, "a blue one." If only it was that easy!! My nephew Benson was with us this year and had his first encounter with Santa. There was some tears but we managed to take some pictures.

Sunday night the Canadian Pacific holiday train was scheduled to make a stop in Milwaukee. We thought it would be a nice quick thing to do with the kids - donate some food for the local hunger task force and enjoy a show! Buuuuuuuuut, it turned out the train was AN HOUR LATE! It was scheduled to arrive at 6:50 (I know, real precise) and we were only going to stay to see the lights and skip the actual show. Kelsey was already sitting/laying on the ground. I'm thankful that I decided to dress them in full winter gear, otherwise there would have been temperature complaints too. Around 7:30 I looked at Kelsey and said, "should we go?" She moved so quick, you would have thought I told her I had cookies:). By the time we made it to the car and drove towards the train station to pick up the guys, the holiday train was rolling in. Kelsey was able to see it from her car seat. We found a place to wait and Drew and Craig were in the car by 8. One of the train cars opens up and there is a singer, which ended up being too loud for Drew's sweet baby ears (like his mom).

Gingerbread house they made with their babysitter Alex

The benefits of Grandpa Irv being on the fire department - private
fire truck tours!!