Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Images of Christmas 2008

For our annual Christmas Eve Pageant, the Caboose and his little cousin did have a moment or two of playing a bit rough with our "baby Jesus". Nevertheless, the pageant was a success - Diamond even pulled out his old trombone for a rousing version of The First Noel.

One of our favorite Christmas Eve traditions is tracking Santa on NORADs computerized system. Even Big Boy #1 was fully engrossed in where Santa was last spotted. (Maybe that magic still has some life in it after all...)

Christmas Eve wouldn't be Christmas Eve without setting out cookies & milk for Santa, and carrots & water for the reindeer. We also always lay out towels so Santa's snowy boots don't get the carpet dirty.

One the favorite gifts this year were Bronco's uniforms for the Big Boys. They both wore those helmets for the better part of Christmas day! (Thanks Grandma and Grandpa Smith!)

Christmas afternoon we went to my parents house. Nanna bought Grandpa "Guitar Hero" for Christmas - not that they really intended to get much personal play time, but they thought the kids, ahem, grandkids, would enjoy it. (Yes, they are that cool!) They did give it a try though, and even rocked out a bit!

This is what the boys have spent MOST of their break doing. They are thoroughly enjoying having a Wii, and have been spending waaaay too much time playing computerized football, basketball and baseball.

I personally have been relishing in all the family time we've had this past week. Diamond has taken several days off from work, the boys are home from school, and even the phone calls from church have slowed down. Now THAT is a Merry Christmas!!!


Confessions of a Shopaholic is a really funny, light, entertaining read. Perfect for Christmas break. This book tells the story of Rebecca Bloomwood, a writer for a financial magazine who is seriously unbalanced when it comes to controlling her own money. She schemes and lies and tries every crazy way to afford the latest pair of shoes, but finds herself in more and more trouble. It's the kind of book where I was cheering for her, and yet totally annoyed by her at the same time. Loads of fun!

The good news is that this book began a series of Shopaholic books. Shopaholic Takes Manhattan, Shopaholic Ties the Knot, Shopaholic and Sister, Shopaholic and Baby... I've already ordered up Manhattan and Ties the Knot. I'll let you know about those.

Apparently Hollywood found this novel worthwhile and is making it into a movie. But for me, I always prefer to read the book first.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Stupid Blog! -or- The Truth, Part II

Do your kids read your blogs??? Apparently mine does. I knew that he would occasionally look over my shoulder, but I didn't realize he would comb through it. No problem, right? Wrong. Especially when I had recently written a post all about whether to tell Big Boy #1 The Truth.

This afternoon, he came to me asking if Santa was real. He had just read my blog and was trying to figure out what I meant when I said "Big Boy #1 recently turned 10 years old. And he still believes. And I'm not sure what to do about it." Right next to a big picture of him sitting on Santa's lap.

So I came clean. BB1 is totally fine. You could see his mind working a million miles a minute. He kept asking questions like "Did you make that grocery store thing?" "Do you eat the cookies?" "Is that why you always stay up late on Christmas Eve?" After each answer he would get a little smile and say "That's so cool!"

But it's killing me. I want the magic just a bit longer. I was on the verge of tears, and BB1 was smiling. Of course, we made him swear to the Universal Law of Secrecy, and I'm pretty sure he's good. We're going to let him stay up late tomorrow and fill stockings. He's thrilled. Me? I just hate this part of growing up.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Santa Baby!

What's adorable about seeing Santa:

What's less-than-adorable about seeing Santa:

(Yes, that would be Diamond, second elf from the right at the company party.)

On the way home, Big Boy #1 pointed out that Santa, and the guy that sat next to us at dinner, sure seemed to look and sound a lot alike. That, and the drunk lady who said "Steven!!! You were the BEST Santa EVER!!!" in front of the kids.

Maybe The Truth won't be such a relevation??? (Or not. He stopped buying the whole Mall-Santa thing years ago.)

Princess Academy

I {heart} young adult fiction. Shannon Hale's Princess Academy is no exception. Her story is a quick read about a young mountain girl who is sent off to the Princess Academy, along with all the other eligible young ladies from her town. The joy of this book is that Miri, the main character, uses her brains and fierce determination to improve the lives of everyone around her. It's uplifting and fun.

For whatever it's worth, Shannon Hale also wrote Austenland, about a single women who visits a Jane Austen resort in an attempt to get over her Mr. Darcy obsession. Maybe it's just because I'm not Pride & Prejudice fan, but that book didn't do much for me. Nonetheless, give Princess Academy a try, and let me know what you think!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Look Who's Forty!

Today, my sister turns 40! I have had the pleasure of knowing her for 36 1/2 of those years. I knew her back when she looked like this:

And when she looked like this:

(Really, I couldn't let this momentous occasion pass without at least a couple old, embarrassing pictures!)

So last night, Vern and I decided to kidnap her for dinner and a movie (Australia: two movies for the price of one. But really? I only wanted one movie.) It was a fun, frolicy, snow-filled night - complete with Ginger's husband calling in the middle of the movie to tell her that he was about to be prosecuted for accidentally shop-lifting milk from Wal Mart. Let that be a lesson to you!

So, here's to you sis! You have been my friend from the beginning. You are talented, generous to a fault (think pizza in college) and you have watched out for me my entire life. I can't imagine life without my big sister. Happy Birthday! I love you!

Sunday, December 7, 2008


I'm addicted already.

I just opened my Facebook account Friday night, and I have already found:
- The girl I worked with at the mall in high school - she's now a doctor.
- The boy I had a crush on from birth to age 12 - he has three kids.
- The kid I sat next to in homeroom for three years - he's gay. (no surprise there!)
- I've found a college roommate, an old student, and a ton of people from the old neighborhood.
- The boy I dated my junior and senior year of high school - ???
(OK, my techo-savvy friends; How do I lurk on Facebook? I found Serious Boyfriend #2, but I don't want to be recognized - and yes, you are seeing a pattern. How do I look at his page without asking to be his friend?)

They get you with the "See Friends" part. It's like solving a mystery you didn't even know existed. "You mean, I can find out if Kate from high school still has Cam as a friend??? How COOL is that!" It's kinda like a class reunion, minus the crash diet.

I find myself checking my Facebook account with a regularity that exceeds my blogging addiction. I've managed to get in a snowball fight and gain 27 friends - all in the last 24 hours. (So far, excellent for my self-esteem.) Problem is, I don't have the time for this!

So, wanna be my friend???

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Truth?

Big Boy #1 recently turned 10 years old. And he still believes. And I'm not sure what to do about it.

I found out when I was a wee seven year old. My neighbor, Missy, told me. When I confronted my parents, they came clean.

Monday, my 7 year old asked me for the truth. I answered his question with a question; "What do you think?" Apparently, that was enough to stall him - hopefully for at least a couple more years.

But my 10 year old? Really, it's about time. Sure, he's had his doubts. I almost lost him when he was in kindergarten. He had all sorts of tough questions. But somehow, he always comes up with some explanation.

(Pictures taken in 2004)

There is a big part of me that wants the magic to last just a little longer. I selfishly want to put it off as long as possible, but I also don't want him to be the last to know. I don't want him to feel foolish. Then again, I don't want him to be devastated once he's told, I want it to be a positive thing. Any suggestions???