Thank you so much to the reader who suggested that I create another account for Blogger. It occurred to me tonight to try logging in as Joe instead of me and - poof - I can add pictures again! Yay! So this post is a big giant mash up of everything we've been doing all month. I'm starting with the kids' Christmas pictures, because I adore them. We had them taken at Target - seriously, is there anything that store CAN'T do?!
So, what's new? Lily is potty trained- woo hoo! She essentially potty trained herself the day before Thanksgiving, pushing me directly into the camp of "don't rush the potty training - they'll do it when they're ready." My friend Colleen always said "If it's hard, they're not ready" and she's absolutely right. So now we have two potty trained children :) Lily is loving dance class right now. She gets so excited on Mondays when she gets to go. Last week was parent observation day so we got to watch her in action. She's not the most coordinated ballerina out there, but she just may be the happiest! She loves anything to do with art - especially drawing. The other day she drew a snowman that actually LOOKED like a snowman, and she can almost write her name all by herself.
Charlie is still our super sweet boy, but he's definitely been testing his limits with us recently with not listening, throwing temper tantrums, doing things we tell him not too, etc. He's not BAD, but he's definitely no angel right now, and no stranger to time out. I'm hoping it's the age, and we're being very strict with him in hopes of breaking him of the behavior as soon as possible. Otherwise, he's getting smarter by the second - he can identify all his numbers up to 20 now, spell his name, tell you his address, etc. And he's such a charmer! People fall for him wherever we go. The other day I took the kids into the bank with me and Charlie marched right up to one of the women's desks and started chatting away. Next thing I know he's scored TD Bank santa hats, snowman toys, candy canes and bookmarks for himself and Lily.
Seriously, where did my babies go?!?!
This month we've been busy Christmasing it up. Charlie and Lily are SO into the holidays this year, making everything so much fun. Of course, if I have to listen to "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" one more time I may just lose my mind.... (Charlie and Lily love the Grinch, even though ever since I showed them the movie the first thing they say every morning when they wake up is "No one's going to steal my presents, right?")
So, among other festive things, we've worked on our gingerbread house making skills. That is one extra decorated gingerbread house, no?
We've seen many a Santa! The first was on the North Pole Express train ride we took at the beginning of the month, and the kids visited the big guy again yesterday at my friend Megan's toy drive.
And of course, we've baked cookies! Making cookies with two 3 1/2 year olds takes a LONG time, lol, but it was a lot of fun. Except for Charlie's fear of the hand mixer, of course.
Lily found it fascinating though.
We also had a very successful holiday collection through Love, Annaleigh. On Friday we were able to bring up an entire car load of items to the St. Peter's NICU and PICU including toys, holiday receiving blankets, 1st Christmas ornaments, hand-knit hats and gift cards for the families. Thank you to everyone who helped brighten the holidays for these children and parents who are unable to celebrate at home this year.
I feel like I can't end this post without mentioning the tragedy in Newtown, CT. I have to admit that I haven't been following it much - I just can't bring myself to look at the pictures of those beautiful children who were taken far too soon. But our thoughts are with all the families who are suffering and with all the beautiful new angels who left this world on Friday. Whenever something like this happens I feel glad that I live with the mindset of "life is too short." My kids are spoiled, spoiled, spoiled and I don't regret it one bit.