Monday, December 20, 2010

Thanksgiving in Colorado

I am continuing to use my imagination for my third post this morning. So this post was really posted on December 5th, (wink wink).
With our happy 3rd addition set to arrive so close to Christmas this year we decided we should spend our vacation in Colorado over the Thanksgiving holiday instead. The drive went smoothly and the weather was even mild.
We spent all of our time with family. Our parents are friends with each other which makes it easy for us to bounce between homes and activities. Mike's parents even hosted Thanksgiving dinner for all of this year.
Mike's aunt Sue loves to cook and she prepared a lot of the meal. The food was delicious, I only wished this baby would have allowed me to eat more! I guess that is what leftovers are for. Mike's parents set enough tables for all of us to sit in the same room (this picture is missing a few Sherwoods) - I think there were about 25 of us in all. It was quite the group!

My mom was diagnosed with cancer a few weeks before Thanksgiving and I was so grateful this year to be able to go home and spend time with her. We enjoyed working on several projects, decorating the house for Christmas and getting a start on her holiday shopping.
These two pictures are of us assembling stationary with our favorite photos of Mike's. We enlisted the help of some Sherwood cousins and my sister-in-law Kristin.
With my time spent on projects, the kids enjoyed being spoiled by whoever had volunteered to watch them. Asa quickly developed a love for Papa Zeke's truck and tractor. Here he is taking a ride with my Dad on Thanksgiving morning:
And taking a nap with Papa one afternoon:
While Annabelle was usually supervised, she and her cousin Isaac entertained each other pretty well. On Thanksgiving morning while the adults were busy with their own duties these two found Grandma Shauna's supply of scotch tape. THREE rolls of tape later they were discovered.
Annabelle claims looking at this picture that Isaac was Santa Claus and that she was supposed to be Mrs. Claus, even though she is the one with the beard! Grandma teased that without any tape left in the house she wouldn't be able to wrap any of their Christmas presents!

Mike convinced me to stay for the week after Thanksgiving. I am so glad that I did. It gave me more time to spend with our families and knock off a few more 'to do' items with my mom before her surgery on Dec. 7th.
Early that week it snowed so Kristin and I bundled the kids up and took them out to play, despite the bitter cold. - Sorry, no pictures. My photographer was home in Arizona.
Grandma Shauna delighted Annabelle one morning by taking her to get a manicure and pedicure. She said that the women just fussed over Annabelle and one small Asian woman even carried Annabelle out to the car so that she wouldn't mess up her toe nails!
We went off-roading (well, just barely off the road) in Papa's truck before we left. This had quite the impression on Asa, as he still yells "Whoa Papa, whoa!" anytime I go over a speed bump a little too fast.
It was hard to leave Colorado just days before my mom's surgery and knowing that I wouldn't be back for Christmas - but we all missed Mike as well. He made coming home easy with dinner in the crock pot, a clean house and a newly painted toy room to enjoy. What a stud!

November 1st

So today is November 1st and there is nothing else to do on a day like today except record how adorable my kids were for Halloween! Don't check the calendar, just let it go.

We joined our efforts and created just one jack-o-lantern this year. Annabelle was on the design team. I was the de-gunking and seed roasting leader with the assistance of Asa and Mike was trusted with the actual carving.
Asa thought that it was fun for a few minutes, but with Annabelle's influence he soon realized that reaching into the pumpkin for a handful of gunk was gross after all.
I couldn't convince him otherwise.
Annabelle's design this year was a picture of Tinkerbell, which proved a little complicated so we convinced her to rethink it and she liked the idea of a silhouette of a ballerina that her cousin Annica had shown us on her pumpkin over skype.

Dressing up Asa was a synch this year. He had no idea what was going on and we had a dragon costume that fit pretty well, even if it was designed for a Halloween 30+ degrees cooler.
After catching himself in the mirror he caught on and began to touch his head and "ROAR" for us. Trick or treating at the church was fun for him, but I have to say I earned my portion of his candy by carrying him and his bucket around door to door.
After much deliberation Annabelle decided to be a fairy this year. Mike took her shopping and she found wings that matched one of her dress up dresses.

Annabelle at 5

As a mother of small children I often have to use my imagination to get through the day. Sometimes my imagination comes in handy when trying to resolve an issue while avoiding a meltdown. Other times I use my imagination to create games or in other active play with my children. And sometimes, like for this post, I use my imagination to simply imagine that circumstances are different than what they truly are, for my own benefit.
So for the moment, I am pretending that it is November 1st and updating my blog with activities from the end of October is the appropriate activity this morning. So yes, this is for my own record keeping!

I have already posted about Annabelle's 5th birthday celebrations. But I wanted to record a little bit about Annabelle at this age.
At 5 Annabelle has learned to rhyme. Often times if you ask her to make a rhyme she won't simply answer "dog" with "fog" - She'll say "Dog, fog, gog, whoop-alley nog". Perhaps the influence of Dr. Suess? I'm not sure, but it is pretty amusing.
At 5 Annabelle is starting to learn how to read. At school she memorizes sight words and is learning to sound out other 3 and 4 letter words. Often while driving around she recognizes logos and shouts out that she can read that that sign or truck says "Sears" or "Macy's".
At 5 Annabelle has developed a more nurturing role with her peers. She has always been ready to boss them around but now she seems to want to help them and care for hurt feelings and fingers. Her teacher told me that after accidentally stepping on another child's fingers, that Annabelle burst into tears herself because she felt so bad about it.
At 5 Annabelle is still chatty. When comfortable with other adults she will talk and talk and talk. Her voice is still a little louder than most, but she has informed that she just has a loud voice and that she is not yelling. She is still helpful with Asa, when we are running late she will even dress him while I get ready myself. She is still snugly, but only at bedtime or when watching a show. She is still girly and loves accessorizing and wearing skirts and dresses.
At 5 this girl still has our hearts.