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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Playing With Picasa

I wish I could get paid to play with Picasa.
I'd be rich.

What Are Tights For Anyway?

How does he come up with these things???
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A Wonderful Trip to the Dentist

When I was little we didn't have insurance, therefore, the first time I ever went to the dentist I was in fifth grade.  This may be why I really enjoy going to the dentist.  I really enjoy when they tell me what nice teeth I have.  I love that we're blessed to have very good insurance and my children have been to the dentist several times in their short little lives.

I took a half day today to take them both in.  They both needed x-rays and cleanings.  Christian hit his mouth on the tub about a year or more ago and has a discolored front tooth.  He gets x-rays often to watch the nerve damage. 

I decided to change dentists.  Our last pediatric dentist only made appointments in the afternoons.  Hello?!  Naptimes?!   How does a pediatric dentist not realize that?!  It was a good choice.  I loved the new place.  Loved the super sweet and patient dental assistants and love Dr. Mielke. 

He was pleased to tell me that Christian's tooth is doing a natural root canal on itself.  Hopefully it will not need to be pulled!  His permanent tooth behind it is formed correctly too.

I love to stand back - in this case - sit back - and watch my kids interact with other adults.  Both kids were perfectly behaved and very good listeners.  This is totally what I would expect but the dental assistants kept commenting on how great they were "especially the two year old."  (Insert proud Mommy smile here.)

Victoria continued to hold a full conversation even with a woman's hand in her mouth.  I could hear her a room away.  She is so funny.  She is so social it's hysterical.  When I poked my head in her room there she was laid back, with her little legs propped up on a purple pillow and was wearing pink shades.  She didn't need me.  I went back to Christian's room. 

Neither had cavities.  I should hope NOT, I didn't have one until I was 31 years old. 

However, the Dr. looked at V's x-rays and said, "Whoa!  Mom, come over and look at these teeth!!"  There they were, her fully formed GINORMOUS permanent teeth just waiting to knock out her perfect pretty little baby teeth.  He figures she need an orthodontist in two years.  Overcrowing and overbite don't go well together. 

I better start taking some pictures of her gorgeous little smile now while we still have it.

They each got a new toothbrush, floss and a prize.  Christian chose a little Dora wearing winter clothes.  He thought it was a helmet though.  Victoria chose a red sticky squishy fish.  Christian already said that's what he's going to choose next time. 

We decided to take the stairs versus the elevator up and down.  On the way down Victoria was so busy squishing her squishy fish she totally wiped out down the last three stairs and was completely laid out on her belly at the bottom.  Before even lifting her head she held up the fish and said, "Can I bring this to Kris'?"  I cracked up.  "Yes.  Apparently it's pretty important to you.  Now stand up."

We finished off the morning with lunch at McDonald's Playland.

I just love going to the dentist & I hope my kids will continue to too.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sitting on Santa's Lap

Visiting Santa is one of my favorite things to do with the kids.  I have each year framed and on display for the Christmas season.  Before I put them away last week I decided to take a quick pic of each.  They aren't the best quality because I took the pic over glass.  But you'll get the point.

Victoria's First Christmas

We didn't make her see Santa.
Although, now, I wish I had.

Victoria's second Christmas

Oh yeah, I forced her that year.
Just so you know I was kneeling right in front of her and
scooped her right up as soon as this pic was taken.

Victoria's (again) second Christmas
with her little brother very close to fully cooked in Mommy's belly.

Christian's first Christmas.
He was almost one already and wasn't too sure of this Santa character.

Christian's second Christmas last year.
A classic!
I'd like to find a contest to enter it into!!

Big sister smiling on command and little brother
is total freak out mode.
Gosh it cracks me up everytime I look at it.

One day he'll laugh too.

He spent the whole last year saying he's NOT goin to cry when he sits on Santa's lap.

He accomplished it. . .barely. .  .
When we got home and Victoria saw this picture she said,
"Hey!  Wait a minute.  He didn't earn a sucker, he didn't smile!!"

He replied, "Yeah I did!!!!"

Close enough.

I don't know how many years they'll willingly sit on Santa's lap.
But I'm going to keep on forcing it as long as I can.

I love it!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


If I could go back in time and change
 one thing on my Christmas letter Favorite Things
list I would add:
Picasa - an online editing tool.
Oooohh, how I love Picasa.
I could play with it for days.
With our new 50 pictures I'm sure to spend some quality with Picasa!

The Story of Lala

This is, by far, Victoria's favorite Christmas gift.  It is a furreal kitty from Grandma Jeanne.  She immediately named it Lala.  Mark always gets the kids something special that even I don't know about.  He gave Victoria a $20 Visa that she can 'spend anywhere on anything she wants.'
She received Lala on Christmas Eve and the Visa on Christmas morning.  She had an immediate plan.  She was going to use her Visa at the pet store because Lala needed a collar.  I convinced her into getting one from the dollar store instead.  She chose a pretty purple one and it only deducted $1.07 from her card.  As we were walking out she says, "Are we going to the pet store now?"  Why?!  "Well, Lala needs a tag too!"  Well, of course, what in the world was I thinking.  The purple collar would have been much to easy.  Off to the pet store.  They had a large selection, about 15 engravable tags.  Which one does my daughter choose??  The most expensive tag of course, $13.  It is a silver tag with 6 pink rhinestones and it says LALA.  That's it.  I suggested: Victoria's Kitty Lala or Lala Humphrey or Lala pretend bday.
that's it.
Okay.  I cringed at 13.whatever was deducted. 

(She also wanted to buy Lala cat food.  I drew the line! The cat could live off of Cherios we already owned.)

But when it was all put together and she hugged Lala is was priceless.
Christian had his bday pictures taken on the 29th.  The night before V asked if she could bring Lala.  I thought she meant in the car for the ride.
Of course not!  She wanted a 'frameable' picture of Lala. 
So there you have it.  The story of Lala.  
Lala better never get lost or I'll be out making Lost Cat signs.

The Many Personalities of Our Almost Three Year Old

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Skate Night

Christian's favorite past time has got to be roller skating.  He absolutely loves it.
We went for the first time this year, the first Friday in December.

His little feet have gotten so big he's almost ready for a new pair, out growing the kid kind that you just stick the shoe in.

He is so seriously the entire time we're there he rarely cracks a smile.
But once we're in the car he says, "Member when I. . ."

We've never been able to stay late enough for the Hula Hoop contest. This time we did!
There's Jeanne with her 9 footer!  I used the 6 footer.  We both made it til the end.
I would let my children participate in the contest too, but I'm too competitive and wouldn't want to take the chance on them coming too close and bumping my Hula Hoop.
Once when I was 8 years old. . .I beat out about 100 other kids to win a contest.  Still have the t-shirt to prove it.  My dad and I love to tell that story.

Yes, we're the only family with helmets out there.  Safety first.

Victoria has really matured since last spring when we went last.  She didn't want to hold hands at all and actually skated with some of the second graders I knew.  It was so cute to stand back and watch her on her own.  We're looking forward to Skate Night in January.

Introducing My Very Own Clark

My All Time Favorite movie is Chevy Chase's Christmas Vacation.
I smile just thinking about it.
There he is.  See him up on the ladder.  My very own Clark Griswold.
Clark went a little crazy this year with outdoor decor.

Usually we have a strand of icicle light and those gifts that light up and open behind Christian.
This year 'we' added a hideous plastic Santa that is larger than our almost three year old. 
That thing looks like it's older than me.

These lights were cute. . .until we got 20 inches of snow a couple weeks later.  But Mark goes out and digs them out so we can see them from inside, at least.

And of course my favorite the 14 foot Santa.  I love this thing!!  So much I got a 5 ft reindeer and a 7 foot family of Snowmen for next year.  So tempting just to plug them in out there!

While Clark, I mean Mark, was busy so were we.

This is a new tradition I am really looking forward to continuing.
Now the countdown is on to see how long it takes Clark to remove all of the wonderful items from the ice encrusted two feet of snow.  I'm hoping prior to Valentine's Day.

I'll keep you posted.

The Ornaments Were Hung

A couple days after the lights were put on the tree we cranked up some Christmas music and added the ornaments.  We don't rush it.  We look at each one.  So many ornaments have stories that gow with them.  This year the kids were actually able to help without so much guidance.  I took quite a few pictures of actual ornaments.  I think God made me do it since He knew that tree was going to fall in about four hours.

Every year I buy the Hallmark family ornament.  We began this tradition in 2001.  Amazing I just bought the 2010!  One year I waited until after Christmas to get the 50% discount.  Guess what. . . couldn't find it anywhere!  For sure spent more than the 'saved' $10 on gas.  I had to buy it on Ebay for triple the price the following year.

Somehow Victoria remembered picking out this egg ornament last time we were in Colorado.
We told her she could choose any ornament in the whole Christmas store and she chose a pretty little egg.

2007 & 2009 Hallmark ornaments.

That gold little apple is from a kid in my 2nd grade class in 1987 from Mike O.

There's our latest Mount Rushmore ornament.  The last one was demolished in the first tree fall in 2007.

A lot of ornaments were hung on the bottom quarter of the tree.

All decorated and happy!

Looking at her very favorite ornament The Turtle.
Unfrotunately, The Turtle perished in the tree toppling.
I'm on a mission in 2011 to find a replacement.  Good thing we have this picture!

Gotta love Baby's First Christmas ornaments.

Reaching as high as she can, but losing her britches at the same time.

One of the many of Victoria's first Christmas ornaments.

This year I bought them each a Hallmark ornament to remember their interests this year.
Victoria got a Scooby one that sings Ringle Rells and Christian got a Polar Express one.  The Golden Ticket on the top says 2010.

The ornaments have been packed up for another 11 months.  Although many got broken we got about 10 new ones to look forward to taking out next year.

Cutting Down the Christmas Tree

One of our very favorite family traditions is cutting down our Christmas tree at Stacy Tree Farm in Stacy, MN.  Mark and I went there the first year we were married and owned our house. I was pregnant with Victoria. It's been amazing to see how our family has grown and changed the last five years.

This year, for some reason, the pickings were slim.  They assured us next year it would be better.

After about half an hour of wandering around we finally found the perfect tree.  Everybody, except for me, got their little hands on the saw.

Christian was very interested in getting in there.

Finally, time to drag it back to the truck.

Mark left it next to the rode and drove back.  We had walked a too far away to drag it.

This was Victoria's highlight of the day.  A bird's nest fell out of our tree.  She really wanted to take it home.  I convinced her that taking a picture was good enough.

One of the perks of this tree farm is the petting zoo.
Both of the kids love animals and especially love feeding them.

I think she would seriously hop right in there if she could.

We let the kids sit in the front not in car seats, from the tree to the tree shaker. 
Christian loved 'driving.'

The trip is concluded with a visit to Santa and his reindeer, Comit.
Christian really liked the reindeer.  Victoria kept telling Santa she wanted a Leapster.

When we got home the kids went straight to nap and Mark set it up.

The following night the lights were added.  Christian just sat there looking at it.