Friday, December 29, 2006

All aboard!

We are now in Charlotte with my family. We all drove down together on Wednesday, and celebrated our second Christmas. The next morning, Scott had to fly home for work. We miss you!
We traveled north today to the North Carolina Transportation Museum to see the trains!! We got to ride on one, as well as a train round house turntable! It was a fun day!

This is the conductor who said "Tickets, please!" which Ryan was happy to give him.

And this is the engine that pulled the train we rode in. We may have to do Thomas with Ryan this year.

Right now we're getting ready to watch our Terps. Bummed that they won't be playing here in Charlotte tomorrow night, but still hoping for a good game tonight! Cross your fingers!

Christmas Day!!!

On the 25th day of December, we celebrated Christmas. What fun to have Ryan get it a little more this year and really like opening presents and giving presents to others. Some highlights:

Opening the presents from Santa in his stocking,

Receiving "Polar Express" from Santa (the book and the movie),
Opening a big present from Mommy & Daddy (an art easel),

And finally getting close to Santa (who came to visit us at Aunt Cheryl's house!). Santa got a high five, a kiss, and a hug!

1 Day 'til Christmas!

On the 24th day of December, we hung out at Scott's sister's home all morning, then went to mass and dinner with his other sister. Our niece sang at mass, then we went to the historic "Union Hotel" which is up river a bit from Port Deposit, Maryland. Very yummy dinner- real MD crab soup and crab cakes!! Yum!!! Here's Uncle Scott with Kate and Ryan.

And a cranky Ryan (there were so many good places for pictures and not a smile out of my son!!) ready to go home, go to bed and wait for Santa Claus to arrive!!!

Friday, December 22, 2006

3 Days 'til Christmas!

This may look strange, but on the 22nd day of December, we got new tires. It is very important to our holiday, because traveling to Maryland on tires with 68,000 miles on them would probably not be too safe!

While the car was at the dealer, Ryan and I walked across the street to the mall. We had a great time finishing the Christmas shopping, playing in the play area and riding the Merry-Go-Round!

So, now I have to go pack the car. Keep us in your prayers for safe travels. We'll see some of you soon and others next year!! Merry Christmas!

4 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 21st day of December, Ryan helped me pack!

We have been talking about going on a trip. He is very excited to go to "Rachel's house" (his cousin) and open "all the pwesents." So when we started packing, he wanted to "helpa" me and packed what he considered to be the most important things- no clothes or diapers for this guy!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

5 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 20th day of December we got a call from my dad about this:

He saw the article in The Charlotte Observer. Then Scott's partner Matt emailed him this link which includes a picture! Scott makes his first contribution to the blog with this link! I'm so excited about that because it really is more my thing, after all, it's an online scrapbook, you know?
Anyway, hooray to Jane and Abbott West End for their role in this article! Go rent some storage units!

6 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 19th day of December, we mailed the Christmas Cards! Doesn't Ryan look happy to be helping?!

If you haven't received it yet, your card is on its way! And we may have more visitors soon! I put this blog address in the letter. As my friend, Cara said in her blog, now I have to clean it up. She did the same thing in her holiday letter. I think her concerns were over how the discussions of potty training and the like would fly with new readers. I worry about rambling aimlessly in my blog.

Anyway, welcome new folks! Hope you enjoy it! And, as always, leave a comment! I like to know you were here!

7 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 18th day of December, I worked on Christmas Cards. The first batch went out last week-to those who live close by and don't need the holiday letter. Just trying to finish the rest.

I was going to be crafty and make them this year, but I couldn't resist these cute cards by the kids at St. Jude's. For those who don't know, that's a Children's Research hospital right here in Memphis. Started by Danny Thomas, they are the leading hospital for research in many childhood diseases, most notably, cancer. They have a campaign going right now called "Thanks and Giving" where they say, give thanks for the healthy kids in your life and give to those kids who aren't so fortunate. Makes me very thankful this holiday season!

Ryan is helping a lot-he wants to draw on the cards, but I think I've convinced him that putting on the stickers is a good job!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

8 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 17th day of December, we delivered cookies to our local Fire Departments.

It was Scott's idea, and we had fun doing it. Not sure if they are overwhelmed with holiday treats (like Amy was last week at school), but they seemed happy! Two of the three stations offered to let Ryan get in the truck! He also got a Junior Firefighter badge from one station.

We also made those gingerbread cookies. These are a long standing tradition in Scott's family. Tonight, he rolled out the dough, cut the cookies, and Ryan and Amy painted them. My favorite:

9 Days 'til Christmas

On the 16th day of December we baked Christmas cookies! Scott mixed up some gingerbread dough that will have to wait until tomorrow while Amy and Ryan made Chocolate chip cookies, Peanut Butter Chocolate chip cookies, Oatmeal Chocolate chip cookies, and Snickerdoodles! Yummy!

And, can you believe that it is 75 degrees in December! We've been playing outside in between batches!

10 Days 'til Christmas!

On the 15th day of December, we went to Zoo Lights at the Memphis Zoo!

Here are Scott & Ryan in front of one of the many displays.

We also had our first experience with glitter (that's Ryan's friends Mason and Aaron),saw some of Santa's reindeer (I believe it was Donner and Dasher),

and, while Ryan still didn't sit on Santa's lap, we got closer. He will tell you he sat on the stool.

This was also Amy's last day of school before break, so holiday cheer is in great supply at our house! Hope it is at your's too!

Monday, December 11, 2006

14 days 'til Christmas

So much for a picture a day in December! We had a busy weekend down here. On the 8th, 9th, and 10th days of December, we had lots of people at our house! Scrapbooking event Friday night, Scott's holiday party Saturday, and a holiday party for our friends in Ryan's playgroup on Sunday. Whew! We are partied out (but we have a clean house and lots of leftovers!).

We actually got a few shots of the kids all together. Not everyone looking at the camera, but no one's crying! These are some of Ryan's buddies- some whom we've done playdates with since he was just 3-weeks old!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

19 Days 'til Christmas

Yikes! Need to get organized as far as Christmas shopping goes. Why is there always so much other non-holiday stuff to get done around the holidays? Gets in the way of my holiday cheer.

But, that's not what today's post is about. I think holiday cheer is just about back-Ryan seems to be well and will be going back to TC's (daycare) tomorrow! Cross your fingers.

As for today, on the 6th day of December, Ryan saw Santa at the mall, twice (Forgot my Children's Place coupon the first trip, and we were getting enough and it was a good enough coupon, that we just had to go home and come back later. It is important to note that both mall trips were very productive!). When asked if he wanted to sit on Santa's lap, he answered, "No" every time. So Mommy, being the creative photographer she is, got her own little picture of Ryan with Santa. (Cory-the depth of field worked!!)

This one's good too.

And this one.

But he didn't want to smile. Oh well.

Big shout out to Daddy in Atlanta! We miss you!

20 Days 'til Christmas

On the 5th day of Christmas, I came home early to stay with Ryan who is sick. He's got a stomach bug and it got a little worse tonight. I called my mom looking for advice, and she told me a cute story about this picture. As if it isn't cute enough that my son is hugging a tree, he apparently said to it,"I glad you here tree."

Too sweet.

Monday, December 04, 2006

21 Days 'til Christmas

On the fourth day of December, we bought more lights from Lowe's and put them on the holly bushes by the garage. Sure, it's not the giant sno-globe down the street, but I like it. The front door looks really bright because you are seeing our Christmas tree through it!

22 Days 'til Christmas.

On the third day of December we celebrated the beginning of advent! One purple candle symbolizing faith. Ryan keeps asking us to light more. We're trying to change the conversation from, "When is Santa coming?" to "When is Baby Jesus coming?"

Saturday, December 02, 2006

23 Days 'til Christmas

On the second day of December, we lit up our own trees! I have never been much of an outdoor lighting person. I grew up with candles in the window. But our holly bushes are getting bigger and we thought we'd give it a try. We'll see how it looks tonight!

24 Days 'til Christmas

On the first day of December, we went to the tree lighting here in Bartlett. Unfortunately, nature called (and when you're potty training, you don't ignore nature calling) right before Santa and Mrs. Claus drove in on a fire truck and lit the tree. Oh, well. We saw him inside soon after and still got to see the tree all lit up!