Tuesday, December 18, 2007

One More Week....

...Until Christmas that is!
It's crazy that it's that time of year again, but I'm very excited. The girls and I made some Pfefferkuchen today...it's a traditional German cookie, much like gingerbread, but much tastier in my opinion (I'll post the recipe later). My Oma used to make Pfefferkuchen for us every year and sent it out in a Christmas tin with Andes mints inside. I just bought some Andes mints, for old times sake and I'll bake up the cookies soon. It was a few years ago that she stopped sending the cookies because the dough is very thick and she was getting too weak in her old age. She passed away 2 years ago on December 15th, so it's a tradition I like to carry on in her memory.
I've got all of my presents (all of those that have arrived at least--some are still in the mail) wrapped and sent to my parents house so I don't have to deal with it when we travel. Now it's just a waiting game. Jeremy is on "duty" this week, so he's working weird and crazy hours--he's actually in Monterey today for work and will probably be home after the children are in bed...and I really wish we could just head up the hill and let the celebration begin...but I know I must be patient. We still have plenty to do anyway. I've almost got the adventure kits I talked about in my other post finished. My mother in law made cute letters to stick to the kits to personalize them, but it's going to require measuring and exacting work to stick them on properly and I'm not sure I'm up to the task...hahaha!!
I'm praying that everyone stays healthy for the next week. It's always touch and go this time of year...with all of the children around and all of the various illness being spread to and fro...and it always makes me a bit nervous because I want Christmas to go off without a hitch...and to be enjoyed by all. My mom has Saturday thru Thursday off--so that means she'll be home all of the days we're there except for one...it'll be so nice to have all of that time to spend together. I love it when everyone is together, it makes me all warm and fuzzy! Not to mention that I actually get to partake of wonderful hot baths and indulge in reading and other past times a mother rarely gets to engage in!
Speaking of which...time to wake one child up (Abby) and put another down (Luke). He slept in until nearly 11 this morning (I had Abby wake him up), so it's now 3:10pm and I think he's ready for some more Zzzz's.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

When the Children are away....

...Perhaps mommy will get some much needed updating done!!
Yes, the girls are gone for a few days. Yesterday I took them to their cousin, Ashley's birthday party at Pump it Up. It was very fun. The last time we went to a party there, I was overdue pregnant with Luke, so I didn't get the chance to participate in any of the merry-making. So yesterday I got to climb, jump, slide...all of that. It was a good time! My parents met me after the party and took the girls home with them until Tuesday. I got to go out and do some shopping alone and came home to Jeremy and Luke. I tell ya, when you're used to 3 children, having just one is like having none at all! It's SOOOOO nice!! Of course I miss the girls, but it's so nice to have some time to catch up on things. I have presents to wrap, a tiny bit of shopping to finish up, Christmas cards to make and send...all of that wonderful stuff that goes along with this WONDERFUL time of year.
So yesterday while I was doing my shopping, I discovered my new favorite store. It's called Home Goods. It's like a Marshall's or TJ Maxx, but with all housewares. MY KIND OF STORE!! It was amazing, I'll definitely have to put a "Home Goods" fund in my 2008 budget. I got some awesome gift boxes that are like suitcases...I've been wanting that exact thing and didn't know that they really existed until yesterday I saw them!!! I'm going to make the girls "Adventure Kits" for Christmas. The girls have been asking for Adventure Kits for Christmas for some time now, and when I went to the store to look at them, they're pretty junky and cheap. Not something I'd actually get for them because it's one of those things that they'd get, enjoy for a day or so and then throw into the corner. So I bought these boxes, binoculars, magnifying glass, journal...and I'm going to have my dad make a simple flower press and buy some "specimen bottles" and I'll make a little drawing book and add some colored pencils, and they'll be set for exploring and gathering. Once I get this together, I'll post a picture of the finished product. I think it'll be pretty cool! Savannah has been asking for a horse for Christmas. She has her heart set on a horse...obviously I cannot get her a horse, so I'm on a mission today to find a suitable stuffed horse that she can love and take care of. I decided to get each girl a big gift, so I got Abby a cradle/stroller/high chair set from Costco. It's really cute and made of wood. And I'm hoping that it'll get lots of use...Abby is very baby oriented. She LOVES, LOVES, LOVES babies!! Since Savannah LOVES, LOVES, LOVES horses, I really hope that Savannah will love a stuffed horse. She saw one at the toy store the other day and told me how much she wanted it...hopefully it'll be worth the price, because they're definitely not cheap!
So, here's the latest news:
Abby is her usual, spirited self. She has such a wonderful, funny personality. She's SO exuberant and does EVERYTHING with full-bore feeling. That ranges from getting VERY mad at ME (of all people) when she gets hurt to bursting out in song just because she feels like it. She grabs my hand and plants a firm, SWEET kiss on my hand randomly throughout the day. She is such a cute, rascally little thing. She's getting better and better with writing her name, although I do need to sit down and work more in earnest on her writing skills. She's just recently shown interest in doing school work...she pulls out her workbook every morning while Savannah and I are doing school and gets to work. After the first of the year, I guess she'll be added to the official homeschool roster.
Savannah has a LOOSE TOOTH!! The other day she came in the house crying because she had been pulled down and got a nasty scrape on her leg. I put her in the sink to rinse her leg and she looked at me and pulled her lip down and said, "MOMMY look!". I thought, "OH no, she's fallen and chipped a tooth", and I said, "Oh no, did you hit your face?" and she smiles and says, "No, I've got a loose tooth!!". OH my! I wasn't expecting that. It just dawned on me that she is about that age...but I really wasn't expecting it until she got closer to 6 since she was pretty late in getting teeth...but hey! How fun!! I'm very excited...I get my first shot at playing Tooth Fairy!! Savannah is doing great with her school work. She isn't so difficult any more. She doesn't argue too much about getting to work, but she still isn't LOVING it. Her writing is definitely improving, her reading is outstanding and her math is getting pretty good as well. I'd say she's at least at the end of first grade level as far as reading and writing...and definitely doing well in math, although there are some skills we need to work on more in Math. We have lots to work on in the next semester, but it's going very well, and I'm very pleased.
Luke is growing and growing. He's a big guy--probably around 21 lbs. He's still so sweet and wonderful. Lately he's been sleeping from 8:30pm until 10am...pretty consistently. Occasionally he'll wake up around 7am, sometimes I'll hear his mobile going (he's learned to turn it on) and he'll fall back to sleep, and sometimes I have to give him a bottle (I just give it to him and leave since he can hold it now and he's TOO wiggly and distracted to drink it while I hold him...it's kinda sad, I like that snuggle time) and he'll fall back to sleep until 10 or 11am. I pretty regularly have to wake him up. He's eating 2 solid meals a day also. It would be 3 if he didn't sleep in so late, but I'm not worried...he's FINALLY a great eater. He likes pretty much everything these days. I usually do oatmeal and fruit for breakfast...sometimes some yogurt in addition and then we do a Gerber meat and something jar for dinner...with yogurt after if he's still hungry. He's clapping, he's doing the pinscher grasp now...he LOVES cheerios. He loves imitating his sisters...if they cough, he coughs back. He says "Dadadada" all of the time. And last night he was sitting on the floor clicking his tongue at me. It was so cute...I'd look over, click at him and he'd grin and click back. He's such a sweet little doll. I feel so blessed to have a child like him. Really, all of our children are absolutely AMAZING, but Luke is just a gem. Never fussy, just so happy-go-lucky and exactly what our family needed. Praise God! He's sitting up really well now. He's at that perfect point where he's happy and content and still IMMOBILE! I wish we could freeze things right now. The sleep is great, he can't go anywhere...it's perfect. I know crawling is just around the corner though. In his crib he'll pull his legs up under him and when he falls in the living room, he can get around quite a bit. He spins around in circles...travels pretty quick backwards, and "swims" forward by digging his toes into the floor and pushing off. It's very cute! I know that mobility is imminent, and I'm excited about it...but also kinda nervous because I know my days of relaxing are nearly over--for a while at least.
Well that is the news for now. It's now 10am and I've got TONS of stuff I want to do. I'll be back soon with pictures and more updates.