Tuesday, December 31, 2013

second Christmas, same dress

Hard to believe this is only Ella’s second Christmas.  What a difference!  Where did our baby girl go?  She looks SO grown up!
2013-12 cmas

Monday, December 30, 2013

december moving pictures

(plus a few from oct & nov)

the big day finally arrived!

After Christmas Eve dinner and gifts we rushed home to put out our reindeer food and Santa’s goodies.

2013-12-24 Cmas Eve (135) 2013-12-24 Cmas Eve (138)2013-12-25 cmas morning (2)

All three were eager to get into bed and all were quickly asleep with visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads.  Thankfully they easily fell asleep and Santa made his stop at our house!

He came in a whirlwind and left lots of goodies for the trio.2013-12-25 cmas morning (1)

There’s always one kid who gets distracted when they walk into the room.  This year it was Ella.  She was surprised to see Kitty in the den and stopped to pet and chase him.  We had to redirect her so she’d see her pink kitchen.  

 2013-12-25 cmas morning (4)

2013-12-25 cmas morning (5)

Wyatt only asked Santa for one thing a “yellow truck with a silver trailer”.  I’m guessing Santa had a hard time filling that request, but looks like Wyatt was happy enough with the truck and trailer he left.  Wyatt was also pretty excited about new Rescue Center.  Santa must have known that Wyatt loves police and fire trucks, and ambulances.  Wyatt’s new favorite thing to say now is “there’s an emergency!”.

2013-12-25 cmas morning (12)

Santa definitely got Will’s wish list.  He only made a new list every 2-3 days.  But it always had the same few things.  Skylanders (even though Mommy & Daddy weren’t sure about this….) and a keyboard.  He was excited about Skylanders.  And even more excited about his new keyboard.  I’m pretty sure Mrs. Claus had nothing to do with this request, it’s loud and noisy.  Just the way Will likes it.  His favorite parts are the microphone and the recorder that lets him listen to his jam sessions over and over!2013-12-25 cmas morning (14)

And of course, the only thing Ella asked for….a pink kitchen.  I wonder if Santa waivered on this one as much as Chris & I did.  We already have a brown kitchen and warned Ella that Santa might not think we needed a second kitchen.  I have a feeling he waited till the last minute to decide.  

2013-12-25 cmas morning (18)

Next we dug into our stockings.  Santa was good to us.  New crayons, undies, gloves and hats, trains and books!

2013-12-25 cmas morning (23)


Will got a new art set (his #1 request).  And a pretty cool camera that lets you project your pics on the wall.  We’ve had alot of fun with that.

2013-12-25 cmas morning (29) 2013-12-25 cmas morning (31)

Ella got tons of new kitchen toys for that pink kitchen.

2013-12-25 cmas morning (40)

2013-12-25 cmas morning (32)

It was a fun morning for ALL!

 2013-12-25 cmas morning (65)

When it all was over with Wyatt asked where his blue kitchen was <sigh>.  I told him he now had a new-to-him brown kitchen.
2013-12-25 cmas morning (66)Everyone had a very Merry Christmas!


Saturday, December 28, 2013

rhythm in the key of E

Rhythm in the key of E (2013-12-28) from Gusturtle on Vimeo.

all dressed up….

The Sunday before Christmas the kids got all dressed up for Christmas at church.  I attempted a group picture, but you can see where that got me.  Maybe next year, ha.

That evening we celebrated with Mimi’s side of the family with a Christmas dinner.  What a fun night catching up with cousins.

2013-12-22 cmas sundayWM

fall fun (backtrack)

This is old now, but I need it in the “scrapbook”.  We had to wait and wait to play in the leaves.  All the leaves dropped and then it rained, and rained, and rained.  We put up the Christmas tree while we waited for the leaves to dry.  A week later we were able to play and play in our big ole pile of leaves.  Ella could play for hours! Run, jump, roll around, bury herself.  I raked them up and they did it again and again. For 2 days!

Ready, Set…..






Thursday, December 26, 2013

ho-ho-ho or is it choo-choo-choo?

We tried something new this year.  Christmas Eve dinner at Mimi and Poppy’s.  And opening gifts from them afterwards, instead of in the morning. The kids LOVED it.  They loved all of their gifts, and loved having plenty of time to play without wanting to rush on to their other gifts. 

Not to mention, there was a big surprise waiting for them in the basement afterwards...

2013-12-24 cmas eveWM

Without Mimi and Poppy knowing, Will had asked for walkie talkies (he was going to ask for them next Christmas he said).  Imagine his excitement when he unwrapped walkie talkies!  The kids (and Mimi and Poppy) had a great time trying them out.  The perfect gift!

2013-12-24 cmas eve2WM

Poppy had a big surprise for us the kids. A Lionel train set in the basement. Complete with tunnels, mountains and a lake!  Just the perfect height for three little kids. Wyatt silently stared, wide-eyed.  Will grinned as he learned to control the train.  And Ella had fun parking the cars in the parking lot. What an awesome surprise for 3 little conductors!

2013-12-24 cmas eve3WM

2013-12-24 Cmas Eve (114) 2013-12-24 Cmas Eve (96)

Wednesday, December 25, 2013



Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Truth in the Tinsel

This year we embarked on the Truth in the Tinsel advent project.  It was a bit intimidating.  24 days of crafts and bible readings…..with 3 kids!  I knew Will would be great with it.  The other 2….not so much.  But Ella liked the craft part so that helped.  Wyatt, well, he was just Wyatt. 

We detoured from the book many nights.  But kept the lesson the same, just changing up the activities.  Some nights we did coloring pages.  Some nights we used our play nativity set.  They rarely made it thru the short stories/lessons but we hit home the important parts and plugged along.

Proud of our family for making a point every single night during advent to talk about the real reason for the season.  And all 3 can re-tell some portion of the Christmas story, so it was a success. I can’t wait to do it again next year!

Our tree FILLED with our new advent ornaments.

photo (2)

Sheep, managers, crowns, candles, sun/son, light, shepherds, wisemen, joseph, angels, mary/elizabeth, stables, stars, crosses.

T i T

random pieces of life (continued)

Chris is currently in the midst of his 20 day sabbatical from work.  He took the chance to have lunch with Will one day at school.  When I asked W the best part of his day he said french fries.  Quickly followed by Daddy.

photo (7)

The boys coincidentally ended up in matching PJs one night.  Wyatt was SOOOO thrilled to be cool like his big brother.  He grinned all night.  Since then, they will wear these together on purpose.  So sweet!

photo 1 (1)

Ella had a real haircut.  No pictures from the actual event since she was in my lap during it.  But we had 2 inches taken off the back!  It only took 2 years to get it all evened out.  She is thrilled with her new do.  And talks about it alot.  The days leading up to the cut she kept saying it was time for a haircut because it was getting long like “Tangles”.  She’s referring to the movie Tangled.  

photo 2 (2)

When holidays collide (Indian hat + Christmas tree + pumpkins on the mantle)

photo (8)

Wyatt’s Christmas program was a success!  He saw us and did not demand to get off the stage!  And he hammed it up the entire performance.  We were all in shock, and laughing hysterically.  And in case you want to re-live that fun, go HERE!

2013-12-05 wy program (1)

Wyatt had a baby Jesus birthday party at school.  He was just excited about the gifts and treats!
2013-12-17 Wy school party

Will’s Christmas party was craft-heavy.  And the Mister loved every second of coloring and gluing.  And the donuts.  He loved the donuts!  Top right pic says “I am Wilson”

2013-12-19 Ws school party 

Ella-versary or Gotcha Day was celebrated with a lunch date with Mommy and Daddy.  Hibachi style.  Sister LOVED it.  Not the fire part so much, but thought the food was great!  (she loves some steak!)  And we also celebrated as a family with snowmen donuts.
2013-12-19 Ella day2 2013-12-19 Ella day

Saturday, December 21, 2013

random pieces of life

Mister Wilson saw Star Wars (one episode or another…..) for the first time.  I’m sure this was one of those big Dad moments where you get to share your favorite movie with your child.  No surprise, Will said it was awesome!

photo (3)

Ella has decided she has a thing for vests.  Especially furry ones.  Mimi could NOT turn Ella down.  Sister is thrilled with the new addition to her wardrobe!

photo (1)

Will’s class is studying all kinds of December celebrations.  SO we now have a countdown going for Christmas, Kwanza and Hanukah.   Ella keeps asking Will if Kwanza is a boy or girl, and he gets SO mad at her.  He doesn’t know why she doesn’t remember it’s a harvest celebration. 

photo (2)

Ella and Wyatt love the play kitchen.  It’s currently in Ella’s room, so Wyatt figures he needs to wear her accessories while in there making cookies.  

photo (4)

Monkey see, monkey do.  Wyatt had a hard time figuring out how to rest his head like Chris.  He finally gave up and just rested it on Chris’s arm.

photo 2 (1)

And we helped Mimi celebrate a big birthday, complete with ice cream cake.  And candles, of course.

photo 13

Friday, December 20, 2013

Elf Antics 2013 (part 1)

Our elf, Flynn Flyer, is BACK!  He sent us a letter in Nov telling us that he had received a promotion this summer and was a Boss Elf now.  And that he might look different since he is all grown up now.
A few days after Thanksgiving Flynn made his return.  And with him he brought a snowman breakfast!  And he brought us a new movie, Charlie Brown Christmas!
day1 (1)
And sure enough, he does look a little different this year.  Maybe a bit taller. Or perhaps, more bendy.day1 (2) 
He has spent many days hanging out on the shelf.  But occasionally he does some whacky things like stealing Halloween candy, playing with our toys, making hot chocolate.  Wyatt was NOT thrilled to discover Flynn had gotten himself stuck in the legos.  We quickly unassembled that mess.

One more morning Flynn reminded us to get our lists ready.  What  a sweet note I found from Mister Wilson “I love you Elf”.  
photo 4
One of the kids favorite treats was when Flynn turned our door into a snowman!  To quote Will, “this is awesome!!!”.
photo 3 (2)
We only have a few weeks left, I can’t wait to see what else that elf comes up with!