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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Photo 112 - Snow Steam

Although we only received a little snow, it stayed with us for over two days. On the last snow day, it got so warm that when the snow started to melt it created steam. This is snow steam coming off of the field adjacent to our house.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Photo 111 - Ahh Snuggie

Short Person and her much requested Snuggie.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Photo 110 - Christmas Eve

"Twas the Night Before Christmas..."

Just after Santa realized she fell asleep on the couch and almost slept right through the delivery hour. Oops.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Photo 109 - Polar Express

I got tickets to the Mt. Hood Railroad Polar Express ride this year. I wanted to do it last year, but could not get work off. This year, there was no stopping me!

The Polar Express and Our Lives story is a weird one. The movie had come out, I had purchased it based on all the talk about how wonderful it was, sat down to watch it, and seriously thought it was the most boring movie in the world. Fast forward a year. Short Person was now four-years-old and the movie was on television. Almost out of a sheer... "it's a kid's movie, just put it on and hope she'll watch it" thing, I turned the channel and as they say, the rest is history.

I was apparently on drugs or turned into a vegetable for the first previewing of this movie because the second time I watched it, I thought it was the most magnificent movie I'd ever witnessed. It quickly became Short Person's and my favorite holiday show.

So, newly addicted to the wonder, I wanted the full experience. Being denied that first year was tough, but getting to go the second was awesome. The amount of cars needing to get in and out of the parking lot was massive, but somehow I wound up being one of the first in line. We parked close to the entrance, walked right in, got our tickets, used the restroom, and then boarded the train-- almost as easily as I typed that just now.

When the train started to roll, Short Person's eyes got really big, "I can't believe we're on the Polar Express!" she squealed. Later, when we had gained speed, after the hot chocolate and cookies had been served, the car started to sway a bit. This brought a delighted whisper from Shortie who said, "I think we're on the ice now."

I loved how expressive her face was during each moment of the trip. Below is the photo of her watching and waiting for the Conductor to come and punch our tickets-- and they do strive to do it like the movie. He came up to us and bellowed, "Tickets, please!" Held them up high above her head, punched the tickets a few dozen times, the little circles falling like rain above our heads.

Just when you think that the ride is probably at it's peak for recreation, they roll into the "North Pole". I don't think I'll ever forget the wonder and excitement on Short Person's face, and the buzz of the train, as all the kids started climbing up on seats to look out the windows at the elves. From that point on, there was an excitement level unmatched as each child waited for Santa to board the train and come visit them. She was so nervous. She kept telling me that she didn't know what to say to him.

When I told her that she should just tell him what she wanted for Christmas, she looked at me like I'd lost my mind and reminded me that she'd already told him what she wanted and stated that he was Santa and wouldn't forget something like that. (lol) So, I told her to say "Thank you" to him, since she probably wouldn't be able to do it later. At the end of the visit, Santa gives each child a jingle bell.

We stayed with my Great Aunt in Hood River and the visit with her was wonderful. The next morning when we left, we stopped off at the stable so that Short Person could see the horses. She fed them all a treat or two, petted at least one of them, and then laughed as they were let out into the pasture to run and play.

All in all, it was a wonderful experience. One I can't wait to repeat.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Photo 108 - Handmade Christmas

Ahh, the day of wrapping things up for Christmas is upon us. This year, a major theme or desire of mine was to hand make as many gifts as I could. I'm not sure why I caught that bug, I just know that I had a desire to give something other than the advertised... stuff. Stuff, stuff, stuff, we all have so much stuff. Anyway, this is photographic memory of the things Short Person and I made this year.

Santa Claus Ornament, painted by Short Person for her Aunt Dec

Short Person painted these magnets for her Great Grandma.

Coffee Travel Mug for my mom. I was trying to simulate her Coffee Pot People.

This little box we filled with Hershey's Hugs for LJS's mom. Short Person painted this and I think you can really tell how far her painting has come. She did a really good job on the hearts.

We painted little charms for each of Short Person's cousins and I added the cords and findings.

I was also way into the bottle cap thing this season and had fun making these bracelets. This first one a gift to one of the girls that watches Short Person after school and the second one was was for my niece.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Photo 107 - The Scary Room

The women and little girls of my husband's family (and some friends) went out for a Christmas tea today. The tea was held in a store that celebrates and sells Christmas all year long. The upstairs is full of nothing but ornaments and the downstairs is full of gifts, decorations, and cards, and outside there are wreaths and Christmas trees and the occasional turkey wandering around. Christmas, Christmas, Christmas-- except for one room. In one room, it is stocked to the hilt in Halloween. There are figurines and lights and scary monsters that move and scream. There are Halloween trains and pirates and grave markers. There are napkins and cups and candles. Short Person calls this room, simply, "the scary room". I call it totally cool.

As scary as this room is, it is Shortie's favorite. Although Christmas is by far her favorite holiday, there is no other place that she even wants to look at, she is so content to stay in this room.

Once tea had concluded, the had convinced her cousin and her cousin's friend to check the place out. All three of them were terrified of the place, which is why they are holding hands, and yet it must have been like rubber-necking at a car accident because they were all fascinated by the contents and wouldn't leave.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Photo 106 - Getting Caps On

My poor baby inherited my baby teeth, which consisted of basically hardened chalk. She has a mouth full of cavities, some of them needing caps which is what is happening in this photo. She wanted the picture taken so that she could see what was happening when she got done, so I obliged.

Her Daddy and I are very proud of her. It's never that fun going to the dentist, but she game through like a trooper and braved the nitrous, the injections, and at one point even asked for more. It was when they were putting the metal ring clamp around her gum to hold the plastic in place. She was crying that it hurt, so the dentist took off the clamp and talked to her about the need to be honest because if it really did hurt she'd need another shot. She tearfully explained that it really had hurt and lay back down for another dose of numbing stuff. After that, she was just fine.

She has another appointment of the same variety coming up, but we set it out to March to give her a break.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Photo 105 - Nativity Play

Short Person was tremendously excited this year to be drafted as a Shepherd in the Pre-K Nativity Play. It turns out that this year, the Pre-K class did not have enough students to pull off the play alone, so Kindergarten Enrichment got to help.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Photo 104 - A Gingerbread House

Short Person's Kindergarten Enrichment class got to make individual gingerbread houses today. I'd never seen an individual one and automatically assumed they were making an enormous one when they requested that we bring in things for decoration. These were so small, and looked so easy to make using a milk carton, that I think even I can tackle this project. Next year, that is.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Franklin Visits Again

Once again, I have missed the boat on taking a photo of Short Person with Franklin, although much of what he talked about in his entry I did take photos of-- I just wished I'd have gotten him in at least one.

Dear Class,

This weekend, i went home with Megan. I was going to go home with Aaron, but things were so chaotic when he got picked up, I think he forgot! That's okay though, cause I had a great time at Megan's.

Friday, we got to spend time with Sam and her boyfriend. Megan and I always have fun playing games with them. When Meg's mommy got home, we made homemade pizza and then got ready to watch the Phineas and Ferb Christmas Special. It was so funny!

Then Saturday, Meg and her family went to get their Christmas Tree. I stayed at their house because Megan thought it would be too cold for me. When she got home, she thought there was something with oogley eyes under her bed. Everyone looked, even Meg's dog Heidi, be we couldn't find anything!

Sunday, we went to go get another Christmas Tree! This time Megan took me with her. After her Daddy chopped down the tree, we got hot cocoa and cookies.

When we got back home, we kept very busy wrapping presents, making gingersnap cookies, and putting the lights on the tree. I am so tired, but it was a great weekend!


Saturday, December 12, 2009

Photo 103 - Christmas Tree Hunting

LJS cutting down our Christmas Tree and Short Person supervising to make sure he got it right.

I had really wanted a Douglas Fir Tree this year, but Short Person and LJS over-ruled me. When we got the tree home, however, I didn't mind. It turned out to be perfect.

In a twist of irony though, usually when you go into the fields to chop down your tree, it looks small and then you get it home and it looks huge. Strangely enough, this tree looked small and stayed small. It fit in our house, but it was smaller than what we are used to.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Photo 102 - Pictures with Santa

Annual picture with Santa, taken at the Fire Department. For awhile there, I didn't think we were going to get it. Short Person reverted back to the shy, frightened child for about 10 minutes, but after that, she was fine.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Photo 101 - Short Person's Christmas Program

There are times in life when you are handed poetic moments. Moments that come together with symbiotic finesse and leave you either breathless or grinning at the irony. This night was like that.

It was Short Person's first Christmas program. It took place in the same Church LJS and I were married in. We were married New Year's Eve, so the auditorium was still decorated for Christmas. The year's have taken their toll on the building, and of course it wasn't decorated the same, but it was still a sweet moment.

The only drawback for me was that they did some program called "The Spelling Bee". It was cute, but I felt like it could have fit in during any month. Call me crazy, but I actually like Christmas music. I wish we could have had some.

But the program itself was fun. Short Person's kindergarten class had a big moment during a song called the ABC's of Praise. Each child was given a letter, roughly the size of a poster, and they would rearrange themselves to spell out the different names of Jesus. They were supposed to dance as the moved the letters from one name to another, but only Shortie seemed to know what she was doing-- and what she was doing was having a lot of fun spinning in circles to each location where she was supposed to stand. When we got all done and we were leaving she told me that only she seemed to not be lost about where she was supposed to stand. She sounded very disgruntled with the other members, but not totally undone.

The photo was taken at the very beginning of the program. Short Person is in the first row that is standing, on the far left, in the red shirt.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Visiting With Franklin

Franklin visited us again today. Unfortunately, I forgot to grab a photo.

Dear Class,

Today, I got to visit Megan's home again. Everyone was really excited and talkative when we got there because they were getting ready to watch a big football game! I learned that Megan's mom is a Duck and Megan's dad is a Beaver. Megan said she was a Duck too, but I think it's possible they are a bunch of nuts. I've seen ducks and beavers and they don't look anything like them!

Megan and I watched the game for a little while, but we got bored and decided to play "Go Fish" instead. Then, it was bedtime. Megan has Christmas lights on her bedroom window. I watched them twinkle as I dozed off. It was a pretty lazy day.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Photo 100 - Prayer Jar

This is the birthday gift I made for my sister Dec. The jar was something I painted at The Painted Plate, and it turned out so much better than I ever expected it to. It turned out so good the owner of the shop was impressed, so I was feeling pretty pleased with myself.

The day I painted it, I had text messaged my sister to find out what her favorite colors were. I had this vision of her using it for jewelry or jelly beans or something. But, the longer I had it with me, thinking about possible innards, the more focused I became on using it as an inspiration jar. I was going to take the clear marbles and print quotes on paper to glue to the back. But even as I looked into this idea, I got a better one.

Glued to the back of each glass marble is a Bible verse. I thought instead that it could be a jar that held a little pick me up when needed. Both as a verse and as an excuse to pick up her Bible and read a minute.

Sometimes, just holding my Bible makes me feel better. Maybe it could be catching.

She loved the gift, and I received a few requests to make one like it for a few of my friends. All in all, a good day.