Tuesday, December 31, 2013

No Sleep!

This Princess woke up last night at about 11pm and did not go back to sleep. Not for one minute. She has been sick with a fever and cough, but I think it was a protest because we took the Christmas decorations down yesterday.

Anyway, this is what she chose to wear this morning. Appropriate outfit after pulling an all-nighter I suppose:

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Alphabet Rocks

Princess has a serious obsession with rocks. I saw some cool egg rocks at Home Depot and knew she would love them. A bonus is that they are not choke hazards. Some of the rocks we have are small and I'm always worried when we have them out.
I wrote a letter of the alphabet on each rock with a marker. Sharpies didn't really work, but Crayola markers did. Go figure!!!!
She loves these rocks!
She immediately started picking them up and naming each letter:
Rocks bring serious excitement around here. I should have wrapped these up for Christmas:
Princess really didn't want her brother touching her treasure, but he snuck one while she was smelling the candy canes we have in the yard:

Monday, December 16, 2013

25 Days of Christmas-Day 12 (Go to a Place Where Trees are Decorated By Other People)

 It seems like every city we have lived in has a tree festival of some sort. This year we found the Parade of Trees in Green Cove Springs. There were more than 100 trees and each was decorated by a different business or family. Princess loved looking at the different decorations and ever since yesterday, she is into gingerbread stuff, so the gingerbread theme may have been her favorite.

In other news: We did take Gizmo and I will NEVER EVER EVER take him to a park again. Between barking at people, knocking the kids over, spilling stuff in my car, and pushing the shifter into neutral...he is OFFICIALLY done riding in the car with me!!!!

Deep breath...

Here are some of the trees:

My two cuties getting along:

This was another favorite tree of ours:
It was finally COLD here. If there is a winter here, I think this is it:

The trees were located in a beautiful park. I think I'm being yelled at here:

We spent 30 minutes chasing this egret. Princess loves birds. She thought it was a duck, but thats okay:

25 Days of Christmas-Day 11 (Make a Gingerbread House)

This was our very first gingerbread house!
I wish I could say that I made it, but it was a kit. It looked simple, but I didn't realize how hard it would be to keep it glued (icinged) together. I broke the house within 5 minutes of pulling it out of the box. So, I handed the assembling duties over to Sister:
The Princess loved decorating the house and eating the candy:
Sister is happy to help when food is involved. At one point I suggested hot gluing the house and she almost had a heart attack. Appatently it needs to be 100% edible (She's given up on the gluten-free diet by the way, so shes the only one who can eat the gingerbread):
Now this is one happy candy-eating kid:
Our finished product:

Sunday, December 15, 2013

25 Days of Christmas -Day 10 (Buy a Gift for Someone Who Can't Thank You)

There is something about Christmas shopping. 
The decorations, the music, the peppermint mocha at Starbucks, the "deals". I love it all.
In December I even like to go to my least favorite store, Wal-Mart. The gift sets they sell are so cute and somehow I feel like I need them all. Probably a bunch of stuff I will never use, but they make them look so appealing. The other thing that Wal-Mart usually has is an angel tree. You pick an ornament with the name of a child on it and purchase a gift for them. I have done this for as long as I can remember and it has been my favorite part of holiday shopping every year.
The past few years I have been asking Sister to sacrifice one of the gifts on her list to give to a child on the angel tree. I don't think she's mastered "joyful giving" yet, but by the time Christmas comes, the gift she "didn't get" is long forgotten .
This year our play group has adopted a homeless family with 3 little girls. Our group has the blessing of fulfilling their entire Christmas list. We each select the gifts we want to buy, wrap them, and then they are delivered to the family.
Its so exciting to imagine the kids opening their gifts on Christmas Day. I hope they like what we chose, but we will truly never know.
P.S. The gifts we bought are secret.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

25 Days of Christmas- Day 9 (Wear Something Fancy)

25 Days of Christmas-Day 8 (Play in the Snow)

When I was little I looked forward to the snow, especially on Christmas. I liked to build an igloo and go sleigh riding down big hills.
The only bad part about snow is that it has to be cold outside for it to fall. Or does it?
We got lucky and found snow right here in Florida and it was about 70 degrees outside.
Someday I hope to take the babies sleigh riding, but for now:

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

25 Days of Christmas -Day 7 (Make a Snow Globe)

Last night I made my first snow globe.
I think I have a new hobby because I have been walking around the house all day thinking about what I could stick in a glittered jar!
 Here is the snow globe before I put the jar together. Sister is laminated by the way!
Here she is in the snow globe:
To make the snow globe:
1. Hot glue some fun things to a jar lid.
(Make sure you leave space around the edge to put the lid back on).
2. Fill a jar to the top with water.
3. Add a lot of glitter. A lot.
4. Put in some glycerin. I just put in about a tsp. (Find it in Michael's in the baking section).
5. Place the lid on the jar.
6. Shake.
We also recently decked our halls!! I wanted to post some of my favorite decorations.
Here are the wise men that I found at Goodwill.  I just love them!!!! I got the sign there too:
Sister bought me these sweet birds at Target:

My dad sent me these reindeer. They were my favorite decoration when I was a little kid. We used to put them in our front window and I always thought our window was the most beautiful thing ever.
(Dad: just a reminder I am still waiting on you to find the other two).

Monday, December 9, 2013

25 Days of Christmas-Day 6 ( Remember a Loved One)

Did you know that St. Augustine was voted by National Geographic as one of the top 10 places in the world to see Christmas lights? Here is the Lightner Museum at night:
Here is Princess in front of the Casa Monica:
 In the front of the museum there was an opportunity to honor lost loved ones. I thought this was really special since it is especially hard at Christmas to be without someone you love.
Here are the boys lighting a candle for Grandpa:
Look how beautiful the candles looked all lined up:
 This was the place for the candles for veterans:

Sunday, December 8, 2013

25 Days of Christmas-Day 5 (Attend a Christmas Parade)

We went to the St. Augustine Christmas Parade on Saturday and I actually thought the Parade was really great!!! I didn't charge my phone, so I hardly took any pictures. At one point Princess was eating 3 lollipops at once!!!!! She had a good time.

This is Son when he was watching the parade (maybe it wasn't so great after all):

It was PAL day in St. Augustine, so the military had free admission to a lot of attractions. So after the parade, we went to The Alligator Farm:

They had a show where the alligators were eating rats!!! It was so gross! Here is Son practicing his alligator wrestling skills:

After that we went to Fort Menendez, which was my favorite part of the day. I drive past this place all the time and always wondered what is inside. (I will post a pic later today). My phone was dead at this point.

And sorry to Gizmo, but I think there is a new king in town:

Bathikwy thats what he finks. Awwwl haiwl King Gizmo:

Friday, December 6, 2013

25 Days of Christmas -Day 4 (Build a Snowman)

There is a joke around here that Florida's Seasons are:
Summer 1
Summer 2
Summer 3
And Fall (Which lasts about 72 hours)
I was starting to think those 72 hours were never going to happen, but it got a little chilly (low 70's) and we did happen to see some legitimate fall foliage:
Little Brother Stalking:
Sisterly love...I think:
 She does smile. It's just hard to catch:
Considering fall is almost over and winter is never going to happen, we decided to build a snowman (our own way):

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

25 Days of Christmas-Day 3 (Make Christmas Cookies)

I got a *loving* scolding last week by someone whose name I will not mention, but it sounds like grandmother.

Anyway, she said I CAN NOT deprive my children of cookies!!!!!
I didn't realize that I have deprived them of cookies, but just to prove that I am not the cookie grinch, I bought this at Target:
And some of this. (Yes, I am ashamed of myself for not trying to figure out how to make homemade gluten free cookies):

I did make my own icing though, and you can click HERE for THE BEST ICING ON THE PLANET!!!!
Here is Son decorating his cookie:
 Here is Sister with her finished masterpiece:
 Here is mine:
 Here is Princess who did NOT want to decorate a cookie OR let me comb her hair, but she DID want to eat one:
And now a word from Gizmo....
Bathicwy Hi! It's me Gizmo. Hew is a picturw of me for yowr wefwence (Miswletow...Ahem Ahem):
I am hewr to weport a cwime. Wast night was verwy chiwwy hewr in Fworida and when I went to get into my wawrm bed I found a wittle Pwincess. I had to sweep on the cowde weather couch. I am fwourious. I snapped a picturw for evidence: