52/52: Son

The final book in “The Giver” series. It was darker and failed to answer a question I’ve had since reading “The Giver,” but still enjoyable. Also finished in less than 24 hours.

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52/52: The lost week

I haven’t read anything since Monday night when I sat down to watch Downton Abbey.

So good! ¬†I’m half-way through season 2 and hope to finish and see the start of season 3 before the next episode airs.

52/52: The Graduate

Neither Jon nor I have ever seen “The Graduate” so we rented it this weekend. I was surprised to find out the movie was based a book so I used Christmas iTunes money to purchase it. I’m glad I saw it and read the book from a cultural standpoint, but I don’t need to see/read it again.

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52/52: One Bite At A Time

I’ve had this book stored on my hard drive for a long, long time. ¬†I finally took the opportunity to read through the different tasks over the break. ¬†I’m familiar with most of the concepts even if we don’t practice them… yet. ¬†(Although, I will likely never give up shampoo. ¬†I’ve reduced my usage and I’m okay with that.)

New Year’s Questions

Joey:

Favorites:

  • Cereal: Fruit Loops
  • Veggie: Carrots
  • Drink: Water
  • Toy: Star Wars guys
  • TV Show: Star Wars The Clone Wars
  • Game:¬†Cars Trouble
  • Book: Star Wars Sticker Books, Ramona, The BFG
  • Resturant: The Hot Dog Place
  • Holiday: Christmas
  • Animal: River otters and sea otters

If you could change your name, what would you choose? Jar-Jar

What do you love about each person in our family? Daddy: He plays Star Wars with me. ¬†Mommy: She snuggles me. ¬†Grace: She gets stuff off the ceiling for me… like sticky frogs. ¬†Thomas: He plays the whistle all the time.

Where would you like to go on vacation this year?  NYC

What are some of your wishes for this year? I wish to ride on a camel.

Grace:

Favorites:

  • Cereal: Fruit Loops
  • Veggie: Cooked carrots
  • Drink: Princess Kool-Aid
  • Toy: Trampoline
  • TV Show: Doc McStuffins
  • Game: The number card work game at school
  • Book: I Know An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly
  • Resturant: Noodles and Company
  • Holiday: Christmas
  • Animal: Winston (the dog next door)

If you could change your name, what would you choose? Trish

What do you love about each person in our family? Daddy: Perhaps everything. ¬†Mommy: The whole body. ¬†Joey: He’s a good big brother. ¬†Thomas: He’s cute.

Where would you like to go on vacation this year? ¬†Paul’s house.

What are some of your wishes for this year? I can’t tell you because then they wouldn’t come true.

Thomas (obviously observation based):

Favorites:

  • Cereal: Cheerios
  • Veggie: Corn and cucumbers
  • Drink: Milk
  • Toy: Joey’s Star Wars guys
  • TV Show: Mickey Mouse
  • Game: Peek-A-Boo or “I’m going to get you!”
  • Book: He likes to listen to the Ramona books at bedtime.
  • Resturant: Mexican
  • Holiday: Anything with sweets, especially cookies.
  • Animal: Dogs, especially Winston.

52/52: Nobody’s Child

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I used some Christmas iTunes money to buy this. It certainly wasn’t the best book I’ve read, but it was a good one for Christmas break. Think beach read, but a little darker.

December 2012

Right after Thanksgiving we went to our favorite tree lot to pick up a tree. ¬†Our tree was so¬†beautiful¬†I picked it out before we had pulled into the lot! ¬†The tree was huge, full, dark green and smelled heavenly. ¬†It ate up the living room, but we were okay with that. ¬†ūüôā

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Then it started to do this:

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This was the daily clean-up. ¬†By mid-December you could snap the branches right off. ¬†Obviously not safe. ¬†Thankfully, the staff at Shelton’s offered to replace the tree at no cost if we simply brought the old tree back. ¬†Our new tree was a little more Charlie Brown-like, but it was also perfect. ¬†(And, being totally honest it fit much better in our living room than the first one did.)

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We went to the DTSB tree lighting in early December…

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And visited DTSB Santa later in the month.

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We decorated a gingerbread house.

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We made salt-dough ornaments.

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We played in the snow… however little there may have been! The kids made their first snowman of the season.

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We made music…

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And cookies.  Lots of cookies.  (Thomas woke up and went to sleep asking for cookies.)

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After reading a book about Hanukkah we ate jelly doughnuts. ¬†(Neither Joey nor Grace had ever tried one…. ?!?)

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Had a fantastic time celebrating “Spirit Week” at school.

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We really took the time this year to talk about Jesus. ¬†The kids have always known that Christmas is the celebration of Christ’s birth, but we really emphasized it this year and I think they got it. ¬†They¬†thoroughly¬†enjoyed lighting our Advent wreath, singing songs, attending Advent Camp at church and completing their “gifts for the King.” ¬†Seeing their intentional kindness towards others was certainly the highlight of my Advent/Christmas season.

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We traveled to celebrate with Jon’s side of the family. ¬†As with Thanksgiving, it was a busy house, but Joey, Grace, and Thomas really enjoyed spending time with their cousins.

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We celebrated Christmas Eve with my side of the family. ¬†I will always miss my mom when we get together. ¬†I see so much of what I loved in her in my sisters that, even thought she’s not here, I feel her love. ¬†We decided to do an adult Secret Santa this year and it was so much fun! ¬†I am already looking forward to next year. ¬†(The masks were borrowed from my nephews. ¬†I love how our dad is just hanging out in the background.)

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Santa came!

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We always leave a cookie or two for Santa as well as some fudge for him to take home to Mrs. Claus. ¬†One of my favorite memories as a child is my mom reading the note that Santa left for us. ¬†Santa has left the kids a note each year since 2008… it’s become a new favorite of mine to write the note.

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We added the final ornament to our Christmas Countdown.

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We spent Christmas Day in PJs playing with our new things.  The whole kitchen was covered in creatures!  They really enjoyed everything this year and I loved watching them play with their own things, but also share in playing with each others gifts as well.

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We spent NYE with our friends next door. ¬†The food was awesome, we had a lot of laughs and ended the night decorating Chinese paper lanterns. ¬†(We tried to launch them, but the wind was too strong… another night!)

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The kids were nothing short of incredible and made it until 10:30 before heading to bed. ¬†(I think Joey would have made it if we let him.) ¬†Jon and I finished out 2012 watching Casablanca and the ball drop. ¬†We drank our pink champagne¬†(love you, mom!) while we talked about 2012 and our hopes for 2013. ¬†It’s without a doubt one of my favorite date nights of the year. ¬†I’ve spent nearly as many years celebrating the new year with him as without and that just makes my heart happy.

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2012 has been both challenging and awesome but at the end of each day, there is no question that we’re blessed. ¬†Happy New Year!