Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas was here

Christmas was last week, in case you didn't know. We had a crazy busy few days, like normal, but it's always so fun and well worth the lack of sleep and minor temper tantrums that may appear.

It started off with our daycare Christmas party on Thursday. I had all my daycare kids here and we made ornaments, watched "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas", had a dance party and played freeze dance (both with Christmas music), baked some cookies for them to take home, had lunch, read a few stories and then opened up presents...all before 2:00 when they were all picked up so I could go to a funeral in the cities. Whew, it was a crazy day (and I didn't even tell you about having to pick up Lilly from school because she threw up. Twice.).

Christmas Eve started out with sleeping in until 8:00!! It felt like a Christmas miracle, I tell you. And everyone was healthy and feeling great! We had a few screaming sessions that resulted in children finally helping clean the house so that it was presentable when our company came around 9:15. Since the house was now clean, we could all be happy the rest of the day...which we honestly were. My parents, Andy's parents and Andy's sister all came over for brunch and the present presentation. Together we prepared eggs, fried potatoes, bacon, sausage and toast. It took about an hour and it was all gone in 4 minutes. Then we opened presents from my parents and the girls didn't catch on that there were only a few presents from one set of grandparents, but not the other. Or that all the presents had a princesses, Tinkerbell, Mickey see where I'm going here? They finally figured it out when a calendar with a countdown was opened.

We're going to Disney World. Yep, my parents and Andy's parents are taking us all to Disney World--all 11 of us (my 5, my parents, my sister, Andy's parents and Andy's sister) It should be crazy, stressful, and a whole lotta fun!

After presents, we got ready for church and headed out. I managed another Christmas miracle by getting a picture in front of the tree at church with my girls and my 2 close friends' 5 kids all looking at the camera, smiling, and looking great! One picture and they all scattered. It really was a miracle. Then we went to dinner at a family friend's house, where Mikayla chewed her turkey for so long she turned it into paste and gagged herself...all over my shirt. Greatness. Mikayla, of course, was just fine and played hard the rest of the night. After dinner, we went over to Andy's parents' house and opened up some presents there before heading home with 3 very sleepy girls.

Christmas morning was our third and final Christmas miracle--the girls slept in until 8:15! It was crazy to wake up and have the sun up already, especially on Christmas morning when the girls were chomping at the bit the night before and telling us they would be up at 6. We opened presents and then raced to my parents' house for our family gathering with all her siblings and family. Sunday was spent at Andy's cousin's house for that side of the family's gathering.

Very busy, very fun, very crazy. I would post pictures but for some reason, it's not working right now. *sigh*

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cards Schmards

So if you remember my earlier post about our Christmas card fiasco, here's Part 2.

They're still messed up. Yep, I did everything they told me to do and they assured me that the print preview is exactly how it prints. The print preview was perfect, so I printed them and then waited. 13 days. We got them in the mail on Saturday and we gained about 1/2 of a letter on the end of each line. I was so upset because now it's just too late to do new cards. They'll just have to make do. Ugh.

Oh, and my Christmas letter was being printed when my ink ran out. In the middle of Lilly's synopsis. So I need to find a way to e-mail the letter to someone, have them print it, then get them copied and sent all before this weekend.

If you're on my normal card list, don't count on it. You'll probably get them more around New Year's, but that's okay. I'll post it here after I've sent them in the mail. At this point, I'm about to say cards schmards.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


This past Thursday, the girls had their program at the school. Lilly's class was up first and for Kindergartners, they did a great job! Usually, you can't really understand what they are singing but they are so darn cute you don't care. But this year we could understand every word! Lilly was the last person on the top left row.

The program progressed through 1-3 grades, then Alayna's 4th grade class came out to do a little play. Alayna was an elf and had 2 speaking lines. She did a great job saying her lines and dancing across stage.

This Sunday was our Sunday school program at church, despite the snow and cold. My mom wrote the program again this year and did a great job! The kids put on a news broadcast like what would have been seen on that first Christmas. There was a traffic report, saying how busy the roads were because of everyone coming into town for the census and even included funny tidbits like a "camel down on I-95" and a horse that "threw a shoe on the Bethlehem Bypass." We also had a weather report, which stated that the skies were unusually clear and one could see for miles. Then the anchor (Alayna) reported on the census before breaking news came in about a strange, star-like light high in the skies over Bethlehem. The roving reporter (Lilly) was on the scene to investigate. She interviewed several people in the crowd to see if anyone knew what the light was. Then our traffic reporter interviewed a shepherd who said angels appeared to her on the hills! After some further investigation and an interview with a local inn-keeper, reporter Lilly found the newborn Baby Jesus in the hay. It was such a cute program and my mom did a great job writing it! The only thing that would have been better is if our church had a few more kids so that each child didn't have multiple roles. But all in all, it was a great success!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Snow My Goodness!

This past weekend we got socked with a good ol' fashioned snowstorm. We haven't had snow like this since the Halloween blizzard of 1991. I remember the blizzard fondly, as I was attempting to Trick-or-Treat with my friend Katie, even though we were getting almost too old to ToT. Instead, we just hit up her neighbors and then watched movies all night while eating the candy that her parents didn't get to hand out because no one came to their house.
Anyway, the meteorologists started out the week by saying there was a chance of snow Friday or Saturday. Then by Wednesday it progressed to a "snow event" on Saturday that could make travel difficult. By Friday it was forecasted that we were to get 10-16" of snow and then 35 mph winds immediately following the snow, causing white-out and blizzard-like conditions. Of course, we then had to run a child to Urgent Care (Lilly has strep throat) and stop at Wal-Mart for a few groceries. You know, both of those being things you just love to have to do the night before a huge snowstorm. Urgent Care wasn't too busy, but Wal-Mart was crazy busy and out of almost every thing.

So we get home about 8pm and are starting to think the meteorologists don't know anything because it's not snowing yet. Sure, we had seen the clouds coming in earlier...
but that didn't mean it was going to be as bad as they said it was.

We were wrong. By noon Saturday we had over 10" of new snow--on top of the 10" or so we already had on the ground--and the wind was whipping like crazy. At times, you couldn't tell if it was still snowing or just blowing. By the time it was said and done, Andy figured we got about 12" of new snow. However, there are parts of the yard with hardly any new snow, and other parts with 4' snow drifts. But we were good. We were hunkered down in the house with snacks, movies, hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps and whipped cream for Mom & Dad...all was good.

Until we had to go feed the animals. That wasn't very fun. Andy is about 7" taller than I am, so I had to remind him to take little steps so I could walk in his footprints. I immediately sank in the snow past the tops of my boots (brrr) so it didn't matter if I was in his prints or not. The dogs were dragging their bellies (even Marley!) and the cats wouldn't come out of the barn for fear of being lost. We haven't seen them out of the barn yet. It was crazy, but it was fun, too. Who doesn't love a good snowstorm like that?!

Our deep footprints

The 2 divots in the upper R and lower L corners are from Marley jumping. They are 10' apart! haha

Our long, cold walk to the barn (which isn't far from the house at all!)

The snow against the door from inside the barn.

So who wants to come visit? Things today are back to normal, the girls had school on time (even though it was -13 at bus-time) and the roads are open. Any takers? We have lots of hot chocolate and peppermint schnapps!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas Cards

I have gotten in the habit of making our own Christmas cards on PhotoShop. A friend taught me how to do it a few years ago and not only is it pretty easy, but then I can have them look just how I want it. I don't have to adjust anything to fit a template, or deal with wording that is okay but not quite what I wanted. I can do as I please.

Yesterday I got our cards in the mail. I set the size to 4x6 on PhotoShop and then print them as photo prints from an on-line site--it's cheaper that way and works great. Until this year. Apparently 4x6 isn't quite 4x6, but more like 3 15/16 x 5 7/8. Must be that "new math" everyone is talking about. So my cards came without the last letter on the last word in each line. Oh and the year for these cards is 201. Fun stuff. It's like a word puzzle (everyone who knows me know how much I like brain teasers and word/number puzzles) to figure out what it is I'm really trying to say. *sigh*

I spent almost an hour on chat this morning with Customer Service trying to figure this out. They said my digital photo size didn't match their digital photo size. I said, "I set the photo size to 4x6 when I created the file and I ordered 4x6 prints." But somehow that doesn't match. Thankfully, they worked with me and credited me not only for the prints, but also for new shipping. They gave me a few tips on how to correct it and it's supposedly all legit and good now. I guess I'll see in a few days when my new cards arrive.

So if you get a card in the mail and it's a fun word puzzle, there's a prize for those of you who can figure it all out! Okay, so there really isn't, but you can pretend there is cuz I'm nice like that.