Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Day 2009

Christmas Eve.
New pjs!
Santa brought Tori a new camera. Poor Max is going to have a million photos of himself because hes the only subject that cannot say no.
Tristan all geared up and ready to try out the skateboard Santa brought him!
Todd helped the kids bake the birthday cake this year - the results were slightly tragic but its the thought that counts.
Before we called it a day and spent the afternoon at home, just the four of us, trying out new toys the kids went to The Memory Care Unit where my mom works and sang "Happy Birthday Jesus". This was with my parents at the facility.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Stuff - Part 1

As part of their continued Gifted Program Service Project Tori and her friend Madison made snowman/snowflake pins for the residents of HarborChase Assisted Living. The picture is terrible but they turned out cute...and the residents loved seeing the girls in their reindeer ears. While they were there they also played noodle ball which consists of trying to keep a balloon in a circle with pool noodles...super funny!
On the last day of school we had a "holiday party". 22 kids showed up - eek! We made a cute snowman bobble head craft, drank hot chocolate and had snowman cookies and then took it outside for Freeze Tag. Here are a couple of pics. It was such mass chaos the pictures were not so good. These are the moments in which I look forward to a house with some yard space and parking.

Monday, December 21, 2009

End of the Year House Update...

We are still looking...

I found one I loved. But I am stubborn and the seller is stubborn so we have both drawn lines in the sand and neither of us are willing to cross the line at this point. It's pretty much already done in my exact taste - light kitchen, light walls, white bathroom, wood floors - plus it has a pool and garden tub both of which I would love to have but was not holding my breath for. Still hoping that he will come down a bit more after the holidays if he does not get any more are a few pics.

The second contender at this point is a newer listing...but listed at 40K less than the above one. It does not have a pool but does have a 4th bedroom and a freakishly large yard. I mean gargantuan and really really well landscaped. And a porch. And its be recently remodeled some so the kitchen and bathrooms are newer and the main floor has some interesting wood look tile - which seem durable and easy to clean. All together not my dream house but a lot of space for a good price with some good potential.

So current plan is to do nothing this week but wait...enjoy Christmas and leave our realtor alone. The second house the kids and Todd did not go with me so they will go see it next week and make sure they like it and then we will make some decisions from there. Who knows we may end up continuing the search but as frustrated as I am about the whole thing I am also encouraged that we have now found two at least near our price range that I like. That's progress...

House A is more expensive but has the pool, my taste, and is in the kids school zone.
House B is less expensive with more space but no pool, a more northern feel, an upstairs (this was a con for me), and in the kids elementary school area but they would go to a different middle school then all their friends.

***Todd likes them all - he is far less picky and as long as its nice he's happy as long as he has a place for his desk, a place for Max to run around without having to be walked, and a garage. Hence the reason all above arguements are in first person single not plural - Todd likes both! ***

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Spreading the joy...

I read a blog called Cake Wrecks - see link under BLOGS I READ. Its usually just funny and ridiculous. But they are doing a Charity Countdown to Christmas that is well worth checking out. So this Christmas consider joining them in making small donations that add up to big change.

You can check out the progress of various organizations they have chosen to sponsor by clicking on each of these links at First Giving for Jen Yates.

Yesterdays charity was Love146 Just one of many great causes. We all have our own charities that touch our lives and hearts and some that are close to even if nothing on this list touches you...I encourage you to reach out this Christmas. Remember that its a holiday about giving not getting, about spreading love and joy.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Holiday Celebration @ Busch Gardens

Fun day Saturday started with the kids musical practice followed by a day at Busch Gardens...we saw a Christmas on Ice show, Holiday with Our Favorite Characters (aka Santa, Elves and Frosty), and the last 5 minutes of a Gospel Christmas singing an absolutely breathtaking version of Joy to the World!

My parents are not so good with my camera...and my shirt is screwed up but trying to document what we actually did - not just what I have decent evidence of us doing :-)

Then I had to go to work until a little after midnight when I finally had enough and called it a day - oh well everything can't be fun!

Christmas Card Rejects...

Pics taken for but not used on Christmas cards...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Reindeer Rap

Tori's chorus at school recently completed their winter concert including songs to celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. This was the one that Tori had a "solo" in and therefore was down front and easily recordable. This particular video was taken on a field trip to a local assisted living they took following the concert. Be prepared to laugh!