Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas 2011: The Bike

A few months ago Claire started really zooming around on her tricycle, and we told her if she kept it up, we'd get her a "big girl" bike.  We took her to a bike shop a couple of weeks before Christmas to look around and get her fitted.  Fortunately Trek makes a 12 inch bike that fit her perfectly, and we all preferred the blue bike to the pink.

After stockings, Robert wheeled the bike out.  Claire was so excited, and that afternoon we took her outside for a ride.  She did such a great job!



A video of her inaugural ride:

Christmas 2011: Part Two

On Tuesday we drove to Vernon to celebrate with my side of the family.  Aunt Nancy, Uncle Kerbow, and Jonathan came for the day on Wednesday, and we opened presents and enjoyed another Christmas dinner.

Fueling up for presents with a snack

Claire passing out the presents

Dad looking at the photo book we made for him with pictures from his and Will's birthday celebration

Will and his new airplane

Claire & Nana looking at a photo book for pictures of our family

Afterwards we took Claire to the high school to show off her bike riding skills.  There is a sidewalk that goes all around the top of the football stadium, and she really motored around the entire thing.  The rest of us had trouble keeping up.



Will enjoyed watching his big sister!

Thursday we headed back home, and we had the easiest trip ever.  Seriously - it could not have gone any smoother.  For six hours, we had minimal tears, only pulled over a couple of times for Claire to use her travel potty and another time to go through the Whataburger drive through, got naps from both kids, and I actually read the entire January book for Book Club on my new Kindle.  It was truly a Christmas miracle.  :)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas 2011: Part One

We spent Christmas in Arlington as per our usual tradition.  We drove up on Friday and spent Saturday doing some last minute shopping and hanging out with our family.  Will loved playing "Ride-y Horse-y" with Ma.


The light up antlers were passed around a few times and got lots of giggles.



Christmas day was filled with family, food, and fun presents.


After breakfast we started with stockings.  Will was anxious to check his out.


The maracas have been a big hit with both C & W.


Aunt Carol and Baby Grace checking out Grace's pile.


This one has also been popular.


The Hello Kitty Bingo set provided lots of entertainment.



Uncle Lee and me with our special stockings.  :)


Claire with her big gift - a big girl bike (that deserves it's own post!).

New markers!

Sweet Baby Grace

Bob & Ma taking it all in

Will is ready to learn how to grill!

On Monday we went to Fort Worth to visit Great-Grandmommy and Great-Granddaddy and then got ready for the next leg of our trip.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Recital 2011

Claire and Will's school held their holiday recital on the 16th.  Will's class performed to "Santa Claus is Coming to Town", wearing Santa hats and shaking little bells.  Will wasn't too sure what to think about the crowd, but at least he didn't melt down!  (Sorry about the photo quality - I had to zoom in, and then I cropped out the other children.)


Claire's class performed to "Jingle Bell Rock", and she was super excited, although this photo might make it seem otherwise:


She did a great job with the choreography - one of the best, in our opinion.  :)  A couple of weeks before the show, we were trying to figure out which song they would be performing to, and Robert just started listing off random Christmas song.  When he said "Jingle Bell Rock", she said "That's it!  That's it!"  She practiced a lot at home.  :)

We have a video of her re-enacting her performance during Christmas at Ma & Bob's house.  Our favorite part is towards the end, when she gets down on her knees, holds out her arms, wiggles her hands, and exclaims "Merry Christmas Everyone!!!"  It's near the 2 minute mark.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

School pictures and a gift

The fall school picture day happened in October.  Usually the pictures aren't that great, plus we had done professional sessions in August and had another one coming up in November, but they were going to use a different photographer, so I put in a little extra effort to dress the kids in outfits that coordinated.

I'm so glad I did, because we ended up with the best photo of the two of them together - better than any from any of the other professional sessions we've done.  We ordered several copies to give as gifts, and now that most of them have been handed out, I thought I'd share.  This definitely isn't the best representation, but it gives an idea.  This was for Robert's office - I got the frame for him as one of his Christmas gifts.  Now I just need to get the larger version framed for our house!


Christmas Traditions

This is the first year that Claire has been really excited about Christmas and seemed to begin to grasp what it was all about.  We decided not to put up a big tree this year (Will isn't walking but is pulling up on everything), and the idea of trying to keep Will away from a tree and presents just seemed a little exhausting.  I did want to have some fun activities with Claire that would get her excited and help teach her what Christmas is about, so we did a Jesse Tree and a nativity advent calendar.  The Jesse Tree was so fun - I'd never heard about one until this year.  Each day you color an ornament and read a scripture about the lineage of Christ.  I read about it here and printed out the ornaments and scripture references.  Every night after Will went to bed, we would read the story while Claire colored the ornament and then hung it on a small tree.


Then we would pull a figure from the appropriate day on the Advent calendar and put it on the nativity scene.


I really enjoyed doing these things with her and further developing our family's Christmas decorations.  I look forward to Will being old enough to participate next year!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Party

Claire's class had their Christmas party yesterday.  They had a good time playing games like "Pass the Candy Cane" and doing a book exchange.  I think Claire's favorite part was lunch - pizza and cupcakes (although I think she only ate the frosting).  The first picture makes me laugh - it really illustrates how small she is in comparison to her classmates.




Monday, December 19, 2011

Project Life: Week 50

December 12 - 18

Friday, December 16
School holiday recital

Sunday, December 18


Nana and Granddaddy came to SA for the weekend to visit and to see the kids' holiday recital. On Sunday after church, Claire and Will had a great time getting wagon rides from Granddaddy.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Project Life: Week 49

December 5 - 11

Tuesday, December 6

One of Claire's favorite things to do is draw and practice her letters on her white boards.  Today I asked her what she was drawing, and she said "a cow".  I came over to look, and for the first time, I could actually recognize what she drew.  So proud!


Claire giving Will wagon rides in the playroom.  It usually ends with someone upset, but it's always fun for awhile.  :)

Saturday, December 10



We met up with Grandmommy last night for dinner, and the kids got their first Christmas presents.  Claire got a Leapster Explorer, which she loves, and Will got a little play kitchen.  We took it out of the box this morning, and both kids had a great time playing with it.  

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

My silly, happy boy (and his spoon)

Today the kids are in school and it is my day to catch up on photos and the blog.

[December 2]  Just a few of my happy boy.  The kid still loves spoons (really, any utensil, but spoons seem to be the safest!) and always wants one (or two, or three) in his hand at all times.





[December 4]  The little scamp can't walk, but he has become a champion climber.  After I caught this, we hid Claire's step stool.


Monday, December 05, 2011

Project Life: Weeks 47 - 48

Saturday, November 26

One of Will's favorite activities is playing in the kitchen drawers.  He is so proud when he pulls stuff out.

Tuesday, November 29

Will is getting really good at following directions - here I was telling him to show me his spoon.


Finally got a chance to use my anniversary present - a Le Creuset dutch oven.  LOVE!

Friday, December 02, 2011

2011 Christmas Lists

We've had several people ask us about Christmas lists for the family, so here are some suggestions.  We are so blessed to have so many people think of us during the holidays!  If there is something specific you would like to get for one of the kids, just let me know and I can cross it off of the list.

Leapster Explorer
Leapster Explorer case
Do-A-Dot markers and books
Crayola Dry Erase Activity Center (the one with letters and numbers)
Crayola Dry Erase Markers
Washable markers
Goodbyn Bynto lunchbox
Gift cards to Gap/Old Navy, Target, or The Children's Place for clothes

Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Kitchen
Little People Airplane
Melissa & Doug Toolbox Fill and Spill
Edushape Sensory Balls
Zoli Sumo Snack Stacker
Sili Squeeze (for smoothies and travel)
Nalgene Tritan Grip & Gulp water bottle
Clothes and pajamas - size 24 months or gift cards to Gap/Old Navy, Carters, or The Children's Place
Gift cards to Stride Rite, Nordstrom, or Target for shoes

For both kids/whole family:
Books!  A few suggestions -
Memberships to the McKenna Children's Museum, San Antonio Zoo, or San Antonio Botanical Gardens
Lego Duplo block sets
Lego Duplo building plates

Robert & Amy:  e-mail us!