Thursday, December 29, 2011

more project life love!

so, back in april, I bought 2 PL album kits. the amber and the turquoise, which were the 2011 designs. my intent was to put 2 years’ worth of photos in each book. I got to work on 2007 and 2008 right away, and stuck them in the turquoise album.001 currently, all the pictures are in and 2007 is completely done with journaling and everything. still need to do 2008, but that’ll happen some time.

since then, the amber kit has been sitting on my shelf, unopened, just waiting for me to get my pictures together. at the end of november, snapfish offered penny prints and I went for it. I got all of 2005 and 2006’s photos edited, organized, and ordered. I knew that I would have to deal with the non-digital photos I had (we got our first digital camera in may of 2005) eventually.

well, that box of snapfish prints has been sitting on my shelf, taunting me for a good 3 weeks now. I was disciplined. I had vowed NOT to touch it until after christmas, and I didn’t.  last night, however, at 10:58pm, I caved. I don’t know what possessed me, but I couldn’t hold off any longer. initially, my plan was just to cut apart the vertical pics (which I printed, 2 on a 4x6, so as to use them in the small slots). so I did that. then I thought I should sort them, roughly, by month. so I did that. then I had to sort the rest of the pictures, into those piles as well. then I had to check my files on the computer, to make sure everything was in the right month and order. so then I was sitting there, with 20 neat stacks of photos, laid out on my dining room table. it was too much. so I opened up the amber kit.

ahhh… it was glorious. it is everything I expected it to be and more. I am completely and totally in love with it.

but I digress.

so then I decided to just put a few of the pictures in. just a few. I started at the back, going in reverse from december 2006. I decided to do it that way, because I didn’t know how many pictures I had from the start of 2005. so I put in december, then november, then october… you get the idea. pretty soon, dave got up.

yup. it was 5am. I had everything in it, up through august of 2005.


I wasn’t really that tired, but the reality that I have kids who WILL get up at some point in the morning kind of kicked in. (that, and the fact that I’d been kneeling on the dining room floor for probably 3 hours.) so I hobbled off to bed (I think I finally have all the feeling back in my feet), even though I had 3 neat stacks sitting on the table, calling my name.

so, morning came. late, thankfully. vacation is awesome for letting your kids stay up late (and thus, sleep in late!). at 9am, I was a TOTALLY AWESOME MOM, turned on tangled (which they had requested the night before), and went back to bed.

when the movie was over, I made myself 2 cups of coffee, instead of 1, and sat down to ‘finish up’. hahaha!

003 I put the rest of those 3 neat little stacks in. but no, I couldn’t just leave it there.

I attacked THE BOX. you know the one. we all have them. the big, scary, black hole of pictures that you’re “going to do something with” someday. 006 fortunately, my box is relatively organized, and I was able to quickly find the sections of pictures for 2005 that I wanted. several of them were repeats, because I had printed a lot of the digital stuff already (and then forgot that I did that, and printed them again), but it was fun to see some of the prints that are pre-digital. we have all of our pictures cycling though our computer as our screen saver and wallpaper, so I’m constantly seeing our pictures, even really old ones. but this was fun to see.

at any rate, I found them, sorted them, cropped the vertical ones to fit in small slots (because I’m totally anal about the vertical ones not going in horizontal slots. seriously. I couldn’t handle it.), and got EVERYTHING in! EVERYTHING! as in, it’s done! 005

all I have left to do is the journaling. which I REALLY REALLY want to do right now, but I’m restraining myself.

between the picture/paper mess I’ve made of the dining room with this, and the fact that my kids entertained themselves with paper, scissors, and watercolor paints today, and that my in-laws are coming tomorrow, I really need to tidy up.

and I swear, I’m going to bed at a decent hour tonight.

Monday, December 26, 2011

week 51 in pictures

holy cow. we are winding down! this will be my second to last weekly post for this year!!!! wow.

sunday:012 finally got the kids’ presents all wrapped. 2 big fat boxes for each… what could it be???

monday:003 just a little random cuteness.

tuesday:004 on the way back from… somewhere… california, maybe? layla made a bunch of paper ornaments and I had the brilliant idea that she should make a big paper christmas tree to put on her bedroom door. she then bugged me to let her make this tree nearly EVERY day since, usually right before bed time, or when I was in the middle of making dinner. FINALLY, it happened. they painted it green, I added some glitter glue lights, and cut it out. layla cut out and taped on all of her ornaments, and then we put it on her door!

wednesday:008 new tragedy for our family… layla had a super loose tooth, which she managed to lose AND swallow while eating breakfast. she was quite distraught.

thursday:009 christmas baking has commenced! yes, I like to wait to the last minute. and every year, as I’m cursing the stress and time constraints, I vow to start in november the next year. that has yet to happen.

friday:010 layla and micah helped me decorate.

saturday:022  christmas eve: shane and layla were involved in a big choir number during the service at church. it was beautiful! (they are both on the left side of the picture.)

more christmas eve:2011-12-24 before church, we went to visit amy and finnigan (adam had to work). while there, amy fixed a haircut botch, and finnigan became completely enamored with shane. layla and micah were ecstatic to go to “roscoe and dakota’s house”! then, at church, micah got to have his own candle during ‘silent night’. he was very good and took the whole thing very seriously. then he and layla posed as goofballs in front of the christmas tree.

and we attempted to do some decent family shots… 003 004  

and the extras:2011-12-28 1&2. me with summer/tina and kate at a christmas party/game night dealio. yes, we get a little silly.

3. the finished paper tree on the door.

4. my traditional christmas jammies.

5. layla, wearing her favorite of daddy’s shirts.

6. the traditional block wall at the end of the hall. dave did this one year, “to keep the kids from sneaking into the living room and opening presents before we’re up”, and now they want it every year!

that’s it. only 1 more!

christmas day at barb & paul’s

(otherwise known as “ana and elsa’s” to my kids.)

after breakfast, quick showers, packing up clothes, jammies, and gifts, we loaded up in the car and drove south to my cousin, barb’s house. we got there around 3. my parents and aunt marilynne were already there, as well as my other cousins, lynne & jim. there was chatting, and munching, and drinking of spiked cider going on. soon, mike and marie showed up with baby liam, and everyone applauded! LOL. gotta love having a baby around! after that, caitlyn and her fiancĂ©, danny arrived and that was everyone.

we had traditional hedvall family (my mom’s mom’s family) swedish christmas dinner of halibut and sausages, along with other yummy fixings. then we sang carols (which was both beautiful AND hilarious), paul lit the candles on the tree, and finally opened presents.

we got gift cards and the game, qwirkle (which I’ve wanted for the last 2 years!), layla and micah got some toys and accessories for their rooms, shane got an awesome rc helicopter (along with other BIG boys mike and danny – and when all the presents had been opened, they all disappeared outside to try them out)and the game clue. we gifted my cousins with IOUs for envirosax packs that were hung up in the mail, and the scarf and mittens I knitted for my aunt.

as always, it was a blast, and I’m excited that we’ve reinstated this tradition with my mom’s side of the family. 2011-12-252

christmas morning

so, I had a few technical difficulties w/ my pictures from christmas. turns out, my iphone camera is not quite as fabulous as I first thought. it still takes great pictures in the church, and will definitely do better in a pinch, but from now on, I’ll be sticking with my point and shoot (until I get my REAL camera!) for daily stuff. first of all, a lot of the pictures came out blurry or grainy without the flash, and with it, there’s like this light aura thing going on that totally washes out the picture. (but don’t worry, I still love my phone!) then, when uploading and attempting to edit the pictures from my phone, I discovered that my computer or the picture files themselves, or both, don’t like each other. more than half of them were unable to be edited because of something to do with the file (I’m so techie!). so I did all the editing in picassa, but now I can’t figure out how to put them in this post FROM picassa, and since I really don’t care that much and don’t want to spend all day trying to figure it out, I’m just putting in the big collage I made from them that will go in the book. 2011-12-251

stockings were first.

in micah’s was snow mittens, underwear, chalk, a card holder, glow in the dark silly putty, and a thomas the tank engine water color book.

in layla’s was snow gloves, a new barbie and ken outfit, erasers, glue sticks, chapsticks, and a rapunzel doll.

in shane’s was snow gloves, gum, erasers, underwear, soda flavored chapsticks, and a phone.

(a note on the phone: this is not a cell phone. when we switched our cable and internet to comcast recently, we got the ‘triple play’ deal that comes with a home phone line. well, we don’t actually own a house phone. we’ve only used cell phones for the last 6 years. well, now that shane is mr. preteen heartthrob, I’m getting all sorts of calls and and texts for him. we were going to just not plug a phone into our now active jack, but decided that we could have that be the number shane gives to his friends. so he got a plug into the wall, non-cordless phone! we’ll just have to remember to turn off the ringer in the evenings during the fall so we aren’t inundated by political calls.)

after that, they did their presents to each other. layla got shane the fuzzy earflap hat he wanted, and she got micah the movie ‘cars 2’. micah got layla a tin w/ hello kitty pez dispensers, and shane a glow in the dark hexbug nano. shane got micah a pair of fuzzy slippers and (the big event!) he got layla the ‘fur real friends’ walking, barking white dog! they were both SO excited about this gift. it was fun to see shane so worked up about the fact that he was giving someone a gift he knew they’d really like. he bought all the gifts and shopped himself, so this was totally him. and it lived up to his expectations because layla LOVED it!

layla got us a new butter dish and shane got us a bagel slicer (won’t have to be hauling bagels to my parents’ anymore!)

then the kids opened their gifts from us. each got a bedspread set and a lamp. sounds kinda lame, but the big thing is that they’re getting their rooms redone. lots of relatives were in on it, so various other accessories have been trickling in, with a few more to come from gramma and papa. we’ll be painting, and rearranging and completely redecorating both bedrooms, in stuff that is, more or less, of their choosing. (I had sneaky subtle ways of extracting this information.)

then it was on to pancakes and sausages for christmas breakfast, and to get ready to head to portland for christmas dinner w/ family.

christmas eve service

shane and layla were both involved in the christmas eve service at church. there was a mass choir number w/ the kids and adults. the big kids rang hand bells and sang, and the little kids looked beautiful, singing with their sparkly capes and candles. it was a beautiful number, and they pulled it off perfectly. yes, I got a little teary.

layla had a bit of a cold, which is what the sniffling and occasional nose-wiping were about. but, even so, she did great, and always loves singing in church (or anywhere, for that matter).

after that, we had the traditional candle-lighting portion and sung silent night. micah got his own candle this year.024027

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

a timeline of confusion

may 2006: layla takes her first steps
january 2007: layla, in the process of potty training, decides that, not only does she not want to poop in the potty, she does not poop AT ALL.
february 2007: layla STILL refuses to poop. you can read all about it here, if you feel the need. however, in reading over that post, there was a very significant sentence: she walks around on her toes. this was in an effort to keep her poop in. this whole poop-phobia thing lasted only about a month, but apparently it was long enough to imbed toe-walking firmly in layla’s muscle memory and it became a habit.
december 2007: dave’s gramma gives layla a shirt with a tu-tued dancer on the front and the words ‘future ballerina’ because she has apparently noticed that she is always on her toes.
sometime in the general 2008-2010 span of time: when visiting layla’s doctor for well-child checkups, I ask about the toe-walking. he examines her legs and ankles, checks her heel cord flexibility, etc., and determines that the toe-walking is voluntary and nothing needs to be done about it at this point. she would probably grow out of it.
july 2011: one day, layla wakes up in the morning and says her ankle hurts. that resulted in this whole scenario, which you can read about here.
october 2011: and… it happens again, and is documented here. her doctor determines that the injuring and reinjuring of the ankle is likely due to the toe-walking, which should at this point, be addressed. so we see an orthopedics intern at childrens who prescribes PT.
october 2011: layla begins physical therapy. she goes once a week for about a month to stretch her heel cords, hamstrings, and strengthen her hips and legs. we also do a series of stretches at home, as her heel cords are very tight and her right foot cannot be stretched even to ‘neutral’.
november 2011: the PT determines that the stretching and therapy is not doing enough to help. she confers with another PT at the seattle childrens who has more experience with toe walkers. we discontinue PT with her and set up an appointment with the new PT.
december 8, 2011: meet w/ new PT in seattle who determines that serial casting would benefit layla, followed by wearing orthodics with her regular shoes for an indefinite amount of time. we went ahead and scheduled the casting, which isn’t to begin until march – the soonest they can get her in.
december 20, 2011: went to a previously scheduled doctor’s appointment with an orthopedist at childrens. the second PT recommended we keep this appointment to see what she thought. this doctor is not in favor of serial casting. does not think it helps long-term. she wants us to return to PT once or twice a week as well as continue a more disciplined regimen of stretching at home. she also prescribed orthodic braces for layla to have formed for her feet that she will wear at night, to stretch her while she sleeps. if those things do not improve the situation, she is in favor of a minor surgical procedure which cuts and lengthens the tendons, followed by a 6 week casting during healing. we meet again in 3 months. I scheduled her follow-up appt. with this doctor 2 days before she is scheduled to go in for her first casting appointment – which I did NOT cancel… PT scheduled to resume tomorrow. you know, because I love driving to bellevue all the time.
can I just say the following:
seriously. why can’t there be any clear cut direction here? one says one thing, the next says something completely different! nobody seems to agree on anything and I’m SO THOROUGHLY CONFUSED!
honestly, if it weren’t for the stupid ankle-swelling injuries, I would have just left well enough alone. she could walk, run, jump, play soccer, do whatever she darn well wanted to do, ON HER TOES, and she could do it all JUST FINE. it was only because of the injuries that I started to think that this might be a problem that should be addressed. (of course, plenty of people over the years have expressed concerns over it or suggested treatment or shared anecdotes about people they knew whose kids had been toe-walkers and what they had done about it.)
so, for now we stretch and drive to bellevue. awesome.

Monday, December 19, 2011

week 50 in pictures

this week is kind of messed up. I didn’t take any pictures until wednesday, and then those pictures got deleted. so, I have a bunch of random ones from either the weekend before, or post-wednesday… but this is (roughly) how I’m going to be plugging them in to the book. I think…

sunday:032 layla’s FIRST ‘dangly’ earrings. (yes, this is a big deal.)

monday:038 my absolute FAVORITE treat right now. super awesome, high-quality, fair trade, organic, LOCAL (made right here in seattle – I’ve even toured the factory) chocolate! this is my current bar of choice, and dark chocolate (the higher the %, the better), is a totally paleo-approved treat! L.O.V.E.

tuesday:049 micah has decided that the best utensil for eating yogurt is a plastic fork. weird kid. in an ironic twist, I sent a yogurt in shane’s lunch that day. he came home and told me that I forgot to send him a spoon, so he had to go and find one. well, they didn’t have any plastic spoons in the cafeteria, so he had to use a fork! go figure.

wednesday:041 dave surprised me with my brand new iphone 4s!!!! OMG. I kinda felt really guilty about it. like I don’t really need it and it’s all extravagant and everything. but my old 3g was kind of on the fritz and my camera was falling apart, so he decided to replace both! the camera on this thing is awesome, and I totally love it! that said, we were at church when he gave it to me, and I was really excited to fiddle around with the camera. the kids were singing in the service, so I wanted to get some pics and video (this does both). done. and then… accidentally deleted. oh well. I will say that it is IMPOSSIBLE to get good pictures in our church. the lighting is funky and they always wind up dark, blurry, grainy, or everyone with demon eyes. frequently all of the above. this thing took AWESOME pictures in there! the kids are singing again on christmas eve and I can’t wait to take pictures of that so I can show off the awesome quality! (oh, and my kids singing!)

thursday:045 micah, playing at craft club.

also thursday (not sure how I’m going to work this, exactly):2011-12-15 layla brought home her ‘student of the month’ award, and we decided to go out for dinner to celebrate that (and a couple of other recent family accomplishments). after, we went over to the at&t store to see if I could find a case for my phone. I was kind of in a panic, because I have a tendency to drop phones. a lot. and this thing is made entirely of glass and the cost to replace it is through the roof! so… a case was necessary. while there, the kids had fun playing on all of the various devices. layla REALLY wants an ipad. oh, santa?!!  haha! yeah, right!

friday:005 layla made a gingerbread house at school and brought it home on friday. they went to town on it. the remains are on top of the fridge, currently, and I’m hoping they’ll just forget about it so it can disappear the way halloween candy usually does… shhh!

saturday:2011-12-17 dave and I got to have a date! my friend, angie, had brought to our attention that the SIFF cinema was going to be showing a “quote-along” version of the princess bride. um, yeah. that’s only like the best move EVER, and I know the lines, start to finish, better than anything, so we were totally there. it was so much fun. everyone was quoting, they had these inflatable plastic swords that people were dueling with, a random person in an ROUS costume that showed up in the middle of the movie… it was awesome. I even made dave a “hello. my name is… inigo montoya. you killed my father, prepare to die.” nametag.

fun week.

Monday, December 12, 2011

meal plan monday

yup. I realize that it’s getting to be a joke when I actually do post one of these. but hey, I have a rough sketch in my mind, so it might actually happen this week.

  • monday: beef stew (primal style, without the flour to thicken it)
  • tuesday: spaghetti (w/ spaghetti squash for the grownups and any kids willing to try it – veggie noodles for the kids); broccoli; salad
  • wednesday: dinner at church (might have to bring some back-up leftovers, just in case)
  • thursday: leek and potato soup (I think. I have a leek and some potatoes – will have to check the recipe to make sure there’s no dairy)
  • friday: pizza and beans (for the kids, and maybe dave, I guess. might have to make a different plan if he doesn’t want it. we’ll see what I come up with for myself.)
  • saturday: burgers and dogs (sans buns); raw veggies; sweet potato/oven fries
  • sunday: big breakfast scramble

planning meals lately is… interesting. on top of the paleo stuff, I have so many things I’m not supposed to be eating during these 8 weeks, so I have been making stuff that the kids will like, and then just scrounging up a salad or some meat and veggies for myself. well, now dave is dabbling in the primal side of things, too (woohoo!), but obviously, does not have the restrictions I have. so… I’m trying to figure out how to do all this still.

hopefully this’ll get us through this week w/out too much trouble!

week 49 in pictures

um, really? 49? there are only 52 weeks in a year.


sunday:008 after rearranging the furniture in the livingroom to accommodate the christmas tree, we made a little ‘nook’ behind the couch that works for a cozy little play area for the kids. whether or not they’ll use it, is yet to be seen, but they thought it was a good idea.

monday:2011-12-05 I met a friend a starbucks for a coffee date, and micah had to tag along. I gave him my phone to play games, but after awhile he switched to taking pictures. this is a sampling of the pictures he took while patiently waiting for us to finish with our grown-up talk. I LOVE his perspective on all this stuff that was around him.

tuesday:2011-12-051we got a cat tree/climber from a friend for toby. micah, guess who thought it was for him…

wednesday:008 don’t worry, toby likes it, too!. he actually spends most of the day up on that top spot, napping and keeping an eye on the goings on of the neighborhood.

thursday:006 this is shane’s little reading nook in his room. beanbag, blanket, santa hat… cat. toby likes to join him for a snuggle while he’s reading in the evening.

friday:012every december, dave’s company has an open house/party that we like to go to. there’s food, santa, crafts for the kids, spiked egg nog… they also give everyone tickets for the carousel, which happens to be JUST downstairs in front of his building. shane didn’t come this year, since he was at a birthday party playing poker.

also:018 this = christmas for me. the BON star. I know, I know, it’s “the macy’s star” now, but that store used to be the downtown bon marche store, and every year, after thanksgiving, they would put up the HUGE star on the corner of the building. a glimpse of that, lit at night, meant it was christmastime. I wondered how long they’ve been putting that up there, so I googled it and found this seattle PI article that was published last december. apparently, since 1957! at any rate, squirm a little with jealousy, that dave walks out of his office every day to see that, right in front of his face.

saturday:020 after meeting my dad at fred meyer to do a little christmas shopping, I went back to their house to have some coffee and a chat. noticed this on their fridge. it’s the letter that layla wrote (and mailed) to toby when we were in california over thanksgiving. of course, it didn’t get there until the day after we returned and had picked him up, but we didn’t tell her that.

translation: dear mr. fat pants, (that’s shane’s name for him.) I love you so much and miss you so much. so, toby, I was thinking you and I could take a little time together. love toby.

only 3 more of these to go!!!!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I hate it when things don’t make sense.

first off, let me state, right at the start, that this is not a post about secular vs. religious celebration and/or observation of christmas. that is an entirely different issue than what I am about to go on and on about.

I state this at the start, because I’ve posted about this very topic in the past, and all of the comments I get back are very much in the “keep Christ in christmas” and “we know what we are celebrating” school of thought. THAT IS NOT WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT HERE. but, because I’m a wordy, opinionated person, who everybody also knows to be a committed christian, that’s what everyone assumes I’m talking about, even though I think I’m pretty clear that I’m not.

at any rate… the rant of the day is an annual one, in recent years.


this one, single, solitary word drives me absolutely CRAZY for the entire month of december, and even before, and a little bit after.

I am not opposed to holidays. I like holidays. usually, holidays mean that my husband gets the day off of work, the kids don’t have to go to school, we do something different from the norm, the day is somehow “special”.

it is not the word, “holiday” that bothers me. it’s the blatant and nonsensical use of that word, this time of year, that makes me want to scream!

someone (the media, I guess) has decided that “christmas” is a bad word and should not be used to describe the holiday that many people celebrate on december 25th every year. it’s as if a bunch of people got together and collectively decided that americans should deny that that particular holiday has a name. we’ll just call it “HOLIDAY'’ why? is it because the NAME of the holiday has the word “christ” in it? I suppose that might be offensive to some people, but hey, that’s the name of the holiday. if THEY are that offended by it, then THEY should either not celebrate it or THEY should choose to call it something else. why the whole country has to go along with this is beyond me.

but really, that’s just the start of it. apparently, what is behind this whole “christmas is a bad word” movement, is the fact that we don’t want to offend anyone. we don’t want to be so narrow-minded that we assume that everyone out there celebrates the same holidays as we do. that’s fine. I’m all for not offending. I don’t particularly like to be offended, and I feel terrible if I find out that I have unintentionally offended someone. I have also learned throughout my life, that a lot of people think and live a lot differently than I do. that does not offend me. it makes life interesting. if it did offend me, then I have a problem because they are living their lives and that is their business. I hope the fact that I think and live differently than a lot of people does not offend any of them. if it does, then I think they have a problem, because I’m just living my life, same as them.

so apparently, the blatant celebrating of christmas is offensive to some people. I guess. I’ve never met anyone who was offended by people celebrating christmas, but apparently they are out there, because we are pussy footing around the issue now like we’re going to get sued if we mention the word christmas. and really, that’s what it comes down to. the word.

according to the media (and anything involving retail), christmas DOES NOT EXIST. now this is interesting to me, because if you open any grocery store ad right now, you will find that stuff like candy canes and gingerbread houses are on sale. hmmm… interesting. walk into any mall, and you will be affronted with christmas trees towering to the 3 story-high ceiling; lines of well-dressed, impatient kids and their parents waiting to see santa claus; department stores selling bad christmas sweaters and naughty santa lingerie. go to target or home depot, and you have a whole section devoted to trees and lights and wreaths, and all sorts of ways to ‘deck your halls’. turn on the radio, and you will hear traditional christmas music. turn on the tv, and you will see “miracle on 34th street”, “how the grinch stole christmas”, “a charlie brown christmas”, “it’s a wonderful life”, and countless other christmas movies.

so what I’m gathering, is that we’re not supposed to STOP celebrating christmas. we’re just supposed to stop calling it christmas.


this is where I just go nuts!

if someone is offended by the christmas tree in the mall, are they going to cease to be offended if I call it a “holiday tree”???


if the media and retail operations are THAT concerned with offending people, then the only logical way to go about ensuring that that does not happen is for them to not observe it. they shouldn’t sell christmas trees, or christmas cards, or christmas lights. they shouldn’t show christmas specials, or christmas movies, or christmas concerts, or christmas-themed cooking or game shows. they shouldn’t play christmas music.

can you imagine?

I mean, really, that’s the only way to not impose a holiday that some people don’t celebrate (and are apparently offended by) on everyone.

because people don’t put up holiday trees in their houses. they don’t string holiday lights on their roofs. and I’ve never gotten a holiday card from anyone, unless you count one that wished me both a merry christmas AND a happy new year. and I’m sorry, but “miracle on 34th street” is a movie about christmas. there is no way of avoiding that. you can call it a holiday movie until you’re blue in the face, but the holiday it’s about is CHRISTMAS! why are we required to deny that? it’s stupid! it doesn’t make sense!

the one that really gets me are the commercials that tell me I have X many days until december 25th. have I done my holiday shopping yet?

um. no, I haven’t. I don’t usually do any special shopping for memorial day, and the fireworks stands won’t open for at least another 6 months.

just admit it. you mean christmas. if I don’t celebrate christmas, I’m probably not concerned about getting any shopping done by december 25th. calling it ‘holiday shopping’ does not make it inclusive or any less about christmas. we all know what you are NOT saying.

but we all know that no retail establishment is going to deny that christmas is coming. are you kidding? they stay in business, based on the sales they make this time of year.

maybe the media doesn’t want to impose christmas on those that don’t celebrate. but nothing has changed except one word. that changes nothing.

it’s just stupid.

I don’t care about traditional greetings like “happy holidays” or “season’s greetings”. those are fine. they have been around forever and have never been used, until recently, as an attempt to NOT wish people a “merry christmas”. they used to be interchangeable, and as far as I’m concerned, they still are.

so there. that is 2011’s version of rachel’s annual HOLIDAY rant! hope you enjoyed it! blah blah blah.

Monday, December 5, 2011

week 48 in pictures

sunday (actually, saturday evening):067 micah likes to take pictures. he took this one the night before we left CA, and I think it’s awesome. papa gary, in his recliner, reading the paper. I love that the angle on it is low – from his perspective. it’s his papa, through his eyes.

monday:069 dave took the day off of work, since we arrived home LATE the night before. shane was up and off to band earlier, so layla was the only one to take to the bus stop in the morning. she wanted daddy to walk with her. awww…

tuesday:2011-11-28 apparently shane had some styrofoam packing mold stashed somewhere in his room. micah found it and created a little snow storm for himself! UGH! I hate styrofoam! yes, we vacuumed him.

wednesday:2011-11-30 the kids had been looking forward to this for weeks! school skate night at skate king! (btw, locals, skate king is EXACTLY the same as it was when we were kids. exactly.) this was layla and micah’s first time EVER on roller skates and did great!

thursday:014 my child does not know how to sit. this is her, cross-legged, perched on one knee on a 1 inch square corner of her chair, working away on something, happy as a clam. crazy.

friday:2011-12-02someone (won’t mention any names, but he’s the one wearing shorts in the background), thought it would be a good idea to zip his siblings into their father’s coat. just a little big.

saturday:003 getting out the tree!

and the extras:2011-12-03 

  1. last in-n-out burger stop in redding on the way out of town. no bun, cheese, or sauce on my double-double (so I guess it’s just a double). super yummy!
  2. the little mountain just west of shasta, near the freeway, “diet shasta”.
  3. the tree, up, lit, and decorated from the waist down! ah, little helpers.
  4. see 5.
  5. lacking a proper tree skirt, we use a plain white sheet to wrap around the bottom of the tree. or in this case, around the kids, toga-style!
  6. holy bags, batman! one of the bottom drawers in our kitchen is ‘the bag drawer’. I noticed lately, that I was having trouble closing it, so I decided to do a little organizing. I pulled everything out, shopping bags, paper and plastic grocery bags, old bread bags, produce bags, even a reusable grocery bag. pulled it all out and still couldn’t close it. then I pulled the drawer out and found about 30 more bags, stuffed behind the drawer, plastered to the back of the cabinet, and up behind the drawer above it! phew. so all are sorted, stashed, appropriately folded, etc., and I can close the drawer!

that’s all for this week!

Monday, November 28, 2011

week 47 in pictures

sunday:002 our church was a drop-off location for ‘operation christmas child’ this year. we did 3 boxes, one to correspond with each kid. so micah chose stuff for a boy around his age. layla, for a girl her age, etc. they had fun choosing fun little toys and socks and pencils and toothbrushes, etc.

monday:004 another example of how micah learns. first time I’ve ever seen him write a number, and he covers a page with them, all the way up to 16. once again, no one taught him how to do this or even suggested that he should do so. just sat down and did it.

tuesday:007 my cranberry muffins I made in preparation for the trip to california.

wednesday:004 we were actually in the car all day on wednesday, but this is the pile of laundry I did in preparation to leave.

thursday:004 the post thanksgiving dinner lounge.

friday:012 lunch with grandpa dick in oakland. I think some of micah’s facial expressions were directly handed down from him!

saturday:063 abby’s first birthday party! we were so lucky to be in town and get to be at the party to watch this pretty little girl smear green and blue frosting EVERYWHERE! after that we joined our older 2 kids, who were at the hughes’ house, and we all went down to watch the parade. THEN, dave and I met up with nolan for some drinks and a late dinner.

and the extras:2011-11-25 hanging around at gramma and papa’s over the weekend.

friday’s extras:2011-11-251 a walk around lake merritt with grandpa dick resulted in a tree climbing competition between shane and dave, and a crunch leaf fight.

2011-11-252  eventually, we made our way to the playground where kids swung and dug and spun until they felt sick! oh, and I took a picture of a blimp. that was a first for me!


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