Saturday, December 27

Lazing on a Lazing midmorning! :D

I started this blog post on Saturday morning... something came up, I don't know what it was, a child needed something I imagine!! and so here it sits, unfinished!! :D I'll get to it right away! : D
Well we slept in a little Saturday morning which was nice. Rex and I went out Friday night to see a movie and have a little "foog" ( FOOD! ). We had hoped to see a comedy, but the reviews were so pitiful for all of them, "Formulaic" was the term used I think, that we ended up joining a looooooong line for Valkyrie. Wow. Despite dreadful seating ( at the veeeery front on the veeeeery right hand side ) resulting in us having to crank our necks a little, the movie was incredible. It really was a very intense movie and the silence when the movie ended was palpable. It was eerie. Anyway, great, but depressing flick! We then went to a bar and had some very tasty soup and drinks then headed home. Mum said the kids had been really good, playing Wiiiii until the point of collapse and she had no trouble getting them to go to bed. In fact the children had apparently decided it was time to go to bed and took themselves upstairs to get ready!!! :D She was amazed!!!

Saturday saw us spending more time on the Wii, looking at photos on the computer and generally "waiting". It turns out Rex was waiting for ME to make a plan and I was waiting for Rex to make a plan!!! Don't you hate when that happens?! :D We decided in the end to drive up to Mahoney State Park and go ice skating. I realised yesterday that it had been more than TWENTY YEARS since I last went!!!!!!!!!!!!! GAH!!!! How can ANYTHING have been so long ago in my life time?!?! :D Anyway, we all went and the kids, Garry and I skated happily for hours!! Rex didn't want to skate so he was the chocolate and hot chocolate provider! Jack LOVED it and kept saying "LOOK!! I Gating" !!!! Jack actually stopped another boy and said "Hello!! Are you having fun?! " I was amazed! He doesn't usually engage other children like that!!! Oh we had a super time. Jessie did not want to leave and cried and cried!!! I promised her we could come again. I'm so impressed with how cheap it was! $2 admission and $3 for skate rental!!! That's incredible!!!

Here are some pics from the skating!

Garry and Jack.......

Jessie, Garry, Jack and Me! ......

Happy Jack!

Happy Me! ......

Crazy happy Jessie!

Jessie and Jack.....

I love this one!!! Look at the faces!!!!!!

Garry hanging on !!!!

We really had such fun it was insane!!

After the ice skating we headed home again. Garry and I got changed and we went out for dinner at some really fancy and rahther pricey "Beeeeestroh" in town! It was a nice place, the food was LOVELY but it was a bit drafty. Every time someone opened the door everyone in the restaurant shivered! :D We had a lovely meal then headed over to The Venue for a drink. They made me some raspberry fizzy drink, it was very tasty and alcohol free (!) ... it must have been alcohol free as they didn't charge us for it!!! Nice!!! :D

Anyway, we came home and found the kids asleep and tucked up in their beds. They'd apparently been Wii~ing all night and Jack had beaten Jessie's butt in Boxing. Hm. No surprise there! They'd been playing Tennis, Car racing, Baseball... the lot!! I'm really impressed with how quickly Jack picked it up! I've never really been into computer games, but this is a really fun use of technology! :D

Well... Garry leaves tomorrow and Risa and Alicia arrive !!! It's going to be a liiiittle chaotic! But Hey, I thrive on chaos!!! (Until I collapse from exhaustion of course...!)

Have a super Sunday and I'll talk to ya soon! : D

Oh and I haven't forgotten to post Pics from Christmas Day... there are just rather a lot, as you can imagine, and I need to sort them out!! :D


Friday, December 26

Boxing Day!

We just got back from a walk in the heat. Seriously! Remember when I was saying it was -11, you know, like TWO DAYS AGO!?! Well, and I'm not kidding or exaggerating here, it's 65 degrees!!!!!!!!!! SIXTY FIVE!!!!! We thought the thermometer was broken!!!!!! It's GORGEOUS outside!!!!!!!! We went out for a lovely walk, the kids played in the puddles, we walked without coats or even sleeves!!! Can you believe it?!!? :D The snow is ALL GONE... the grass is warm....!! It's NUTSO!! :D Ah well... I'm just grateful it stayed white for Christmas Day! If it had been like today it would just have been aaaaall wrong! ;D

Stay cool! ;D

Happpppyyyyy siiiiiiiiigh !!!

Well! Christmas is over and I can still fasten my pants and, as yet, I have not put on any weight!! Can I get a Hallelujah !!?? :D

We spent most of Christmas Eve wrapping presents, then, as darkness arrived, we set off out for some cheap food and a Christmas Lights tour! It was nice as we didn't leave it tooo late this time so the kids weren't tooo tired, even so, upon arriving in the driveway 4 out of 5 of us were sleeping! ;D We got the kids to bed after they hung their stockings and wrote a note to Santa to leave with the cookies and milk. The kids went to sleep in a moment... to be honest I'm not really sure Jack even woke up! The wrapping fest continued, then we put our gifts out ready for Santa to finish the job. Mum and I had a sherry and we all watched a movie and chatted a bit as Midnight rolled around.

Christmas was here at last!

We said goodnight and went to bed about one am for a short sleep and the kids woke up at 6:45 which is almost sleeping in to me! I went down first, put on the tree lights and woke up Garry... she loves to see the kids faces when they first see their stockings! :D I had been concerned that Jessie seemed to have lots more gifts than Jack and we NEARLY went Christmas Eve Barmy where we end up at Toys R Us frantically buying anything just to fill out the stockings. Happily we didn't do that this year and the children did not suffer in the least as you can imagine! :D Santa did the kids proud and got Jessie the CD player she has asked for and Jack got a giant remote control truck as he had requested! Santa also went hog wild and left a Wii for us all to play with~! We didn't do anything with the Wii all day as the kids were busy with their toys and such. We went out to visit with Rex's Ma and then came home to start cooking! :D We just had an organic Chicken as Rex and Garry were the only ones going to have meat. We had tomato soup and crescent rolls for starters, mashed potatoes, roast potatoes, glazed carrots, peas, corn and green beans, stuffing, and yummy gravy for the main course. For dessert we had Christmas Pudding and homemade Brandy Butter... oh my! ;D The fire crackled away all day, the kids played and played and we just had a lovely evening. The children went to bed early as they were so worn out and when I came back downstairs the kitchen was spotless and the Wii game was all ready for play! :D Not only did Garry do the majority of the cooking, she also set up the table and cleaned the whole place afterwards!! Garrys ROCK! :D Anyway, we had a little more champagne and orange juice and settled down to try out the Wii !! oh what FUN!!! We had such a ball and we were in stitches laughing at it!!! ; D We played and played for four hours without even noticing the time go by!! We ended up going to bed at 1am again and it really felt like we had taken every minute of Christmas Day and used it well!! We saw it in at Midnight.... and saw it back out again! What a wonderful day! :D

Wednesday, December 24

Spoiled much!? :D

My Lovely Ma made me go out for lunch with my Wonderful Husband today! I didn't think I would go as I had lots to do and I knew he was busy trying to finish up a project but between them they convinced me and I set out, all "gussied up", into the cold. We went to a lovely, fancy schmancy restaurant in the Cornhusker Hotel and had some delicious food. We talked about stuff, nothing important, we relaxed, sipped hot tea and coffee and had a lovely time. We went to take some cookies to our friend the jeweler. He's in his 90's now and still going strong but business is tough for him this year and I felt so sorry that times are hard. Rex and he both did their bits to try and persuade me into buying some diamonds! Seriously! I kept having to say NO! Really, Rex, NO!!! (I'm so lucky!!) I wish we could have bought up the store, more for Fred's sake than mine. Ah well! Anyway, hubby and I sauntered back to his office where we parted ways and I headed home with one or two last minute stops ( like to pick up a Christmas gift for the Cat. Honestly. Ahem. ) When I got home the house was spotless, there was a cup of tea ready for me and ALL THE LAUNDRY WAS DONE!!!! WOW!!!! Santa will have to work hard to top all that I tell ya! :D

You'd better not pout!! :D

The big Man is in town tonight!! I hope you all have all your shopping done, your Turkey thawed and peace will reign on earth and in the living room at your place!!!

We're about as ready as we are going to be, though the jig was nearly up this morning...!!! Hubby and I were looking at one of the bigger ticket items for Christmas last night and Hubby inadvertently left the damn thing on the living room floor for any small child to discover upon waking this morning!!! Happily it occurred to me when I woke up that I didn't recall him carrying it up before bed. I went down quick and secured it! Somewhat takes the magic out otherwise, eh!? :D

Today should be a bit of a baking day, a cookie distribution day, you should see them, they are all bagged and ready to go....


We also have to ice our Christmas cake and hope it hardens in time for tomorrow! I'm sure it will and it will probably be more delicious than ever! :D
I have some last minute wrapping to do and my room is a PIT and needs a good clear out before tomorrow. Not that it really matters, but I've never seen it so dreadful!
I'm going to make some mince pies for our light tour tonight I think... that or brownies... I can't decide!

I can't believe it's Christmas Eve again! I'm not sure who's more excited, me or the kids! It's a close call, believe me! :D

Happy Holidays to one and all.... may your days be merry and bright!!


Tuesday, December 23

Some Christmas Pics from our house!

Fa la la la laaaaaagggghhhhhhhh

Oh man!!!! It's getting close to the wire! I need to take BIG BREATHS but I don't have TIME!!!!!

My hubby, bless him, he's an absolute star. WHAT a guy. Anyway, he keeps telling me to relax. He's not worried about what we eat on Christmas Day... he was happy, HAPPY, when Jessie said she'd like Mac and Cheese!!! I must try and keep it in my head that Christmas is NOT about the gifts, it's NOT about the food... it's not even about how pretty your house looks or how nice the kids are dressed.... it's about joy. It's about love. It's about.... COOKIES!!! Cookies, cakes, Christmas puddings and mince pies!!! :D ..... ahem. Sorry... forgot myself there, just a tad!!! Christmas IS about joy and love and family.... but today it's about the cookies!! I'm baking the "Neighbor Cookies" today so they will be ready for distribution on Christmas Eve and I'm also making some delicious brownies that pass easily for fudge to take along on our annual trip to see the Christmas Eve lights! :D

Nearly nearly nearly guys!!! Are you all as excited as me?!?!! : D Weeeeeeeee!!! : D

Yes, it's the Valium talking.... but still...... Weeeeeeeeeeee!!! ;D

Monday, December 22


I did it AGAIN! :D My awesome mother watched the kids for me this morning and I went out shopping.... alone!!! I even managed a lunch date with my husband!!! I felt like a real grown up!! It was sooo dang cold though, I thought I might just freeze, especially as I had failed to notice that the fan on my van was not switched on. This tends to slow down the air movement around the vehicle resulting in a rather lesser effect of the heater than one might have originally intended.

I slid into Super Target parking lot with fingers that were frozen at the tips. I had tried sitting on them, blowing on them, all to no avail. When I got out the car I realised that a poor guy, dressed head to toe in winter gear, was busy chipping and scraping the ice off the path so that us shoppers could get into the store without injury! ( I know it's so they don't get sued, but in my mind it's because they like us and care about us! ) The poor guy must have been frozen to the marrow. I ran into Super Target and called in first at Starbucks! Actually that is a lie, I called in first to the bathroom where I emptied my bladder and warmed my hands under the hot tap THEN I went to Starbucks! I bought a hot chocolate and took it out to the guy! "Merry Christmas" I called to him! He must have thought I was a nutter!! I'd decided on hot chocolate as you can't tell with coffee... people my like decaf, may like cream, sugar, etc...I figured if the guy was lactose intolerant then I'd bloody well drink it!!! : D

I hope it brightened his day, it certainly did mine! ;D

Dooooo Over!!

Oh Look!! An actual AP Parenting post ! : D

Yesterday turned out nice.... it was waaay too cold to leave the house, -6F, so we stayed in and wrapped presents all day! I managed to pay the bills with no trouble, I realised that wrapping the presents would make me feel better so I spent most of the day working on that!!! Rex came home and had bought me a new set of Christmas dishes! Kohls had a 75% off sale and the set and six additional cups came to around $50 !!! They are pretty white plates with red snowflakes so I can use them all winter... not just for Christmas!! Dishes. Not just for Christmas anymore! ;D

Anyway, in the evening Garry offered to give the children a bath. All was peaceful and quiet from upstairs for a long while and Rex and I "reclined" on our sofa!! After a while we began to hear "No!" and "Stop that!!" and "Aggggghhhhhhhhhh" etc!!! There was a great deal of very loud screaming and yelling so I thought I should go up and investigate. Jack was sitting in what was left of an emptying bath. He was crying, screaming and yelling that he didn't want to get out. No No No. In a remarkable moment of AP Parenting clarity, I sat next to the bath and talked quietly to him. We discussed how he loves to have a bath and he hates to get out when he is having such fun.... I suggested that he get out the bath now and let Garry get him dry and ready for bed, but then tomorrow he could have a bath in the afternoon and stay in and play for hours if he wanted to!!It worked!!! I mean, I spoke only for a moment and he said "OK" and happily climbed out the bath!!! It was a Christmas Miracle!! ;D Then, this morning, another one!! :D .....Rex and I were snoozing in bed and suddenly heard "Jaaaack!!! NOOOO!!!" and various other squabbling sounds!! I hate to be woken by squabbling sounds and I think it sets the day off on the wrong foot. I headed into the kids room and asked what the heck was going on. Turns out Jack had knocked something of Jessie's off the dresser and broken it. It could have been accidental, but it wasn't perceived that way! :D The kids were unhappy, Jack was feeling bad I think, (which tends to make him angry) and the day was headed downhill. I suggested the kids have a "Do Over" !!! I told them to go back to bed, pretend to be asleep, and start again. Jessie gets annoyed that Jack wakes her up every morning, so THIS time, she got to be the one to "wake up" first. I told her to wake up gently, have a good stretch and smile. After waking up nicely Jessie had to tiptoe over to Jack's bed, where he was "sleeping", kiss him on the head, say "Good MORNING Jack" and "I LOVE you" !! Jack was then told to say "Good morning, Jessie, would you like a hug?" and then they snuggled in bed together for a while! I went back to bed and Rex and I were both happily surprised when we heard the children get up, tiptoe downstairs and start quietly coloring together!!! ;D What a difference!!! I know if Rex and I get the day started on the wrong foot we have been known to just start again. It really works!!!!

Today the temp is -7 and is set to snow this afternoon!!! Bah!! I still have some pressies to pick up and it's getting faaaar too close to Christmas for my liking!! :D I'm going to have to face the cold today I think....!! Wish me luck! :D

Sunday, December 21

Ho ho ho....Oh Oh Oh.........

Man that was a looooooong day yesterday! The kids advent was to go to the Mall and get into the spirit by looking at the Christmas lights and listening to the music and so on. Hmmm. On the last Saturday before Christmas??!?! WHAT WAS I THINKING??!! Also the temp barely hit 6 before it plummeted to minus 6 with a -20 windchill. Awesome. PLUS it snowed in the morning and the roads were hell. Oooh Faboooo.

Nevertheless I ploughed on. I took the kids and Garry to the mall for a while and we met Daddy there. We traded vehicles, he took the kids home in the van and Garry and I set out for a mammoth shopping event. Ugh. I don't really like shopping, in fact if I could avoid a shopping mall for the rest of my life, I'd gladly do it! I don't like buying clothes, don't like buying shoes, don't like purses.... I know. How can I call myself a woman?!?! I DO like Garry though, so plodded happily through the stores convincing her not to buy THIS and did she need THAT....!!!I came home at 10 pm...yes, we'd been out LITERALLY 12 hours.... with a $4 hair band. No kidding. I still have to go back out now to buy some things for Garry that I couldn't get as she was with me the whole time. * sigh * The joy of Christmas is wearing thin for me now. I'm sad to say it but it happens to me most years. The bubble bursts and I see Christmas for what it has become... a mad dash to the finish, to be the one to buy the most presents for people, Quick Quick, Hurry Hurry, let's snatch up this thing, it will do for so and so..... it's like the stores will stop trading on Christmas Day and you will Never Be Able To Buy ANYTHING Again..... EVERY YEAR I fall in to the trap of spending too much on too little, or rather on too little of significance and too much junk. I haven't given a moment's thought to Christmas Dinner only to dread it. I despise having to cook dinner on Christmas day... it's hell for me. I would gladly order in or eat out..... I'm a terrible mother and wife at Christmas time... I don't have the Christmas Chromosome I guess. I think I do... I dress up my house like I do.... I love the idea of Christmas... the log fires, the mince pies, the Christmas Cake.. I love giving gifts to the children...I hate finding the perfect gift for my husband and my Mum.... They always manage to get lovely things for me and I feel such GUILT that I don't take the time or have the imagination to find the perfect thing for them. I don't have a moment to myself this time of year, it's exhausting. I haven't wrapped anything of any consequence yet... I still have loads to do...... HELP MEEEEEEE!!!!!!!

*** deep sigh ***

I need to get back to the basics a little here. I need to take my vitamins, double up my progesterone, go back to bed with a cup of tea and a good book. Later I will make a list of what's important and what's not...and I'll try and focus on the important things....

Something that is over my head at the moment is the bills.... UGH! I dread them this time of year. Everytime we find something "perfect" for someone it's more money out the bank. I'm not averse to spending money on people and I love to get them something they love, but if I'm spending money, LOTS of money, and it's not even a great gift, just "Something" to give someone.... it makes me nuts. It really does.

Bah. And Humbug.

Where's that Hot Buttered Rum!!???........