Thursday, December 31, 2009

First Word

Photo courtesy of Guest Blogger

I thought he'd been trying to say it. But today I am SURE he said it.

"All done."

Except that it sounded more like "A-da."

But I know he meant All Done because the word was accompanied with the hand motion/sign for All Done and he gave me a BIG smile when I repeated it back to him.

Never mind that he was All Done with his Lucky Charms. I know! I came home from the gym to discover that he was feeding himself, which is great. I thought he was feeding himself his organic spinach puffs. But upon closer inspection, I discovered that he was feeding himself Lucky Charms, given to him by my husband. When I questioned him about giving the child sugary cereal, he defended his decision by telling me that he didn't give the baby any of the charms.

Oh, ok.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

And a partridge in a pear tree . . .

Or, as the song goes for us:

And a hawk on a telephone wire . . .

WARNING: icky carcass photo below. Read with caution.

Lots of excitement here on Christmas Eve morning! There was a hawk outside (who knew there would be a hawk in such an urban environment?!) who killed its prey and was sitting on a telephone pole eating its catch! This was most exciting, especially for my boys. It was like a National Geographic episode right outside in our alley!

I went out to investigate and thought it looked like Mr. Hawk was devouring a squirrel. And sure enough, he was! How do I know for sure? Because my neighbor, God bless her, was taking out her garbage and didn't know that Mr. Hawk was enjoying a meal about 10 feet overhead. She deposited her trash and turned around to go back inside and Mr. Hawk dropped the squirrel carcass and it landed just inches from my neighbor. Thankfully, the carcass landed on the ground and not on my neighbor!

The carcass, although icky, was also kind of cool. I won't go into details, for obvious reasons.

The best thing about this? I think Mr. Hawk ate the squirrel that lives in our yard and torments Emma mercilessly. The same squirrel who eats our jack-o-lanterns. The same squirrel who kept stealing my tomatoes from the vine. The same squirrel who chewed holes in our trash can lids and would scare the crap out of me when he'd pop out of the lid and leap over my head. The same squirrel who chewed holes in our trampoline cover.

A very nice Christmas present for the Langans, to be rid of pesky Mr. Squirrel.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas, Continued

Christmas was a blast, we had tons of friends, family, fun and food. We had 21 people here for Christmas Eve and 17 of them (including the 7 Langans) spent the night. Christmas morning was C-R-A-Z-Y with 5 kids and 2 babies but everyone had a superdy-duper fun time.

I always get the kids matching Christmas jammies. They open them on Christmas Eve before going to bed. Unfortunately, I did not get any photos of the kids all together in their matching jams. This photo was taken right after the boys woke up on Christmas morning (see how tired they look?) They are sitting in front of the heater, waiting for all the grandparents to come downstairs to begin opening gifts.

My 8 year old with her baby brother. (No matching jammies for him, they didn't come in infant sizes. However, he is wearing Baby's First Christmas jammies.) He still has an orange glow to his skin from all those sweet potatoes!

All the kids are waiting for the cue to run to the tree to begin opening gifts. Notice how my son is literally holding back my nephew!

My niece, Maeve (rhymes with wave) on Christmas morning. The babies were enjoying laying on the floor, holding hands and waving at each other.

My 6 year old with one of his favorite gifts: a Star Wars Lego of some kind.

My oldest, wearing every gift of clothing that she received.

Some Christmas-love between me and my 4 year old. I'm wearing jingle bell earrings that were given to me by my 8 year old daughter.

I'm not sure when this photo was taken but I thought it was a great photo because the lights are sort of blurred behind my daughter. She took this photo of herself, by spinning around in a circle while taking the photo. (I got a new camera for Christmas -- this photo was taken with the new camera -- and I need to figure out how to use it. Once I get it figured out, I should have some great photos to post. Hopefully. I'm not sure if I have an eye for photography or not.)

My nephew, Liam, on Christmas night. He looks absolutely exhausted and I love that he has food smeared on his face as well as on his sweater.

Monday, December 28, 2009

O Come All Ye Faithful

Our church held a Christmas Pageant on Christmas Eve and my four oldest children participated.

My 4 year old as a Wise Man. He's the one on the right. He kept insisting that he was a KING, NOT a Wise Man because, "Did you see that I was wearing GOLD, mom? GOLD! Gold is for kings!"

My 6 year old son and 8 year old daughter as Joseph & Mary:

My oldest, the angel:

Mary and the Wise Man.


All four kids together after the pageant:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snowy Saturday

With so much snow, what's a kid to do?

Bake cookies!
Play in the snow!
Go swimming?

Yep, swimming. Our pool has been empty since before the baby was born (it needed a new liner) so my husband spent the day installing the liner and filling the pool. The good thing is that the kids had a blast using it the pool as a slip 'n slide (until the water level rose too much) but the bad news was that we had no hot water for most of the day. (I was not too happy about this when I came home from the gym soaked with sweat and found out that I had to take a cold shower!)

A snowy Saturday leads to a shoveling Sunday. Now the digging out begins. No need for the gym today because there's hours worth of shoveling just outside my door!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Stats Are In

I had the baby to the pediatrician today for his 6 month well-visit.

Height: 27.5 inches
Weight: 17 pounds

Contrast this with my oldest daughter on her 1st birthday:

Height: 28.5 inches
Weight: 17.5 pounds

Yep, he's almost as big at 6 months as she was at 12 months.

We have tall genes and small genes on both sides of the family. I guess my oldest daughter got the small genes and my youngest son got the tall ones.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Tree Farm

All photos courtesy of Guest Blogger

Self portrait by Guest Blogger

We went to the tree farm yesterday to get our Christmas tree. The ground was covered in snow so there was a festive feeling of Christmas in the air. The ground was fairly muddy in spots, but that just added to the fun (and the laundry). The farm is huge with rolling hills and acres and acres of trees. The West Chester Railroad Santa Express passes by the farm so it adds to the fun to see the old fashioned train go by and hear the toot-toot of the whistle.

My 4 year old loves to help his daddy with any manly task: drills, screwdrivers, sanding, painting, plumbing, etc. The Christmas tree was no exception; he helped to cut it down.

Really, my 4 year old LOVES helping. If a toy runs out of batteries, he goes to the basement, opens my husband's tool chest, chooses the appropriate screwdriver and replaces the batteries. And THEN he returns the screwdriver to the toolbox!

He watches Spice Up My Kitchen with me because he likes when the host works on the kitchen's plumbing and electrical. In the older episodes, they show how to cut and solder pipes and run electrical. However, the more recent episodes do not show these details (because really, most people watching the show are probably women who are really just interested in the cabinets and countertops). But my son noticed and asked why they don't show the "man working" and I explained that it's just not very interesting to most people and he said, "Well it is interesting to me!"

I am envisioning him cutting down the tree solo by the time he's 12.

First Christmas tree experience!

My 6 year old is turning into a mini man -- pulling the trolley with the tree!

The (almost) finished product:

I think Guest Blogger has a knack for getting the boys to look like they are enjoying their photo session.

Self portrait in front of the tree (although you can't really tell that the tree is in the background):

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Follow Yonder Star

My husband dressed as a Wise Man, following yonder star (or yonder float, as the case may be):

Last night was our town's annual Christmas Parade. My husband (Wise Man) and four oldest kids (3 shepherds, 1 sheep) were part of the parade. A dear friend of mine offered to come and sit at our house while the baby slept so that I could go to the parade and see the fam. (Thank you, thank you, thank you, EC!!!)

The float:

Unfortunately, I did not get many pictures. First of all, one the shepherds forgot her glasses so I had to run alongside the float in order to pass her glasses to her. Secondly, the parade was moving so quickly that I could barely get a photo of the float and could not even get my husband to stop and pose for a picture.

But a great time was had by all. The weather was perfect and so was the company. And to be out past 7pm without a baby (for the first time since he was born!) was refreshing.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Weigh More, Not Less

You may have to click on the above photo (to enlarge) to understand what this post is about.

My oldest daughter is a petite little thing and used to visit a nutritionist to help her gain weight. She drinks whole milk (with heavy whipping cream added to it) and eats anything that is packed with calories: peanut butter, sour cream, avocados, etc. Unlike most of America, she thinks the goal in life is to GAIN weight and cannot understand why I am excited when I lose weight (baby weight, ugh).

Anyway, her favorite cereal is Special K (I know, seriously! This kid LIKES healthy foods!) I cracked up when I was putting the box away this morning and saw that she took it upon herself to edit the text on the back of the box to reflect that one should weigh more, not less.

Oh to live in such a world.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Quiet Owl

My 4 year old had a Native American celebration last week at school. His Native American name is Quiet Owl. I guess that says something about his nature, especially when you consider that his older brother was named Wild Cheetah.

My other reason for posting these pictures is to show you our new(ish) kitchen. My husband refinished the floors this weekend and then we painted the walls.

Here's a picture of the kitchen before we refreshed it: