It's beginning to look like Christmas around here and feel like it too
(for us wimpy Californian's who think the 50s are cold)
The decorations are up but I haven't done much in the way of shopping, mailing or Christmas letter writing. Since Thanksgiving has always been my trigger to get going on Christmas stuff the week less of Christmas season is catching up to me!
I just have to remember the real reason we celebrate this season and it's OK if we can't do or go to everything there is to offer. Maybe I'll keep things more simple this year...I always say that but at some point I get caught up in it :)
Ashley got an award right before we went on Thanksgiving break. Her teacher had nice things to say about her such as "Ashley is simply awesome! The scholarly habits of intellectual curiosity, preparation, and practice are always present when Ashley is at work. Her participation in class provides a positive experience for all room 410 scholars as they listen to her thoughtful remarks and critiques..."
Our Thanksgiving break started out with inviting the Cowden's over for a Pre-Thanksgiving feast. Jeff got a free turkey from work and we thought it would be a great excuse to have friends over to share it with us. Jeff and I both cooked all day but the dinner was yummy.
Jeff is becoming quite the helper in the kitchen, I've come to enjoy cooking with him!
When we were first married he was more likely to get take out than cook, now he is always open to try something new in the kitchen!!
We love our turkey roaster. Guaranteed no more oven fires!
We tried a ham in it too and it worked great. Its nice to not have to pull the ham out to glaze it, we just have to take the lid off.
The kids enjoyed their week off of school with lots of sleeping in, hanging around the house and a couple of outings.
Ashley's always wanting me to put Maddie on the trampoline and I'm always telling her no. (partly because I can't lift her up there). I look out the window and sure enough Maddie is on the trampoline with her! She convinced Taylor to lift her up. Maddie didn't seem to be too freaked out by it.
On Monday Ashley, Kate and I had a girls day.
After a morning dentist appointment for Jacob we picked up Kate and just us girls went to see Catching Fire.
Then there was a trip to the orthodontist
(Kate came with us and checked out how they tighten her braces)
Then I took the girls to the mall.
We went to Claires and ate pretzels...
and checked out some of the Christmas decorations.
When we looked closer at this guy we realized he was covered in candies.
I think the highlight of our Mall trip was making friends at the pet store. Ashley wanted me to send this picture of a miniature dachshund to tempt Jeff..
At the end of the day Ashley declared that she had a great day.
I agree, I think we should plan girl days every so often! It was nice to shop and hang out without hearing "Are we done yet? Can we go home now?"
On Tuesday we went to Steve and Tahna's to celebrate Jolene's birthday with her.
Happy Birthday Jolene!
Thanksgiving day we went down to San Diego to have Thanksgiving dinner at Cheri and Ryan's house. It was a beautiful day and we all enjoyed their yard while we waited for dinner to finish cooking.
(I don't know how Brooke didn't get stuck in the baby swing but she didn't seem to mind.)
The sand box was a hit...
And here is the card playing group.
The big boys played Bocce Ball
After dinner the hot tub was enjoyed! It was cool outside but the hot tub was warm. Jenae was the only one in at first but it was only a matter of time before more and more...
Before it got completely dark we drove to the beach. We loved the fact that the beach was only about a mile away.
Ashley and Lexi were the only ones crazy enough to get in the water!
Our trip to the beach was a great way to end the day, as well as our quick game night when we got back to the house!
After we got home from Cheri and Ryan's I realized I left my purse at their house! My phone, wallet and everything was in San Diego.
I was lucky enough to have Jared and Vanessa bring it back to me the next night since they decided to stay the night down there.
The down side and the up-side was that I couldn't do any black Friday shopping.
We enjoyed the day by decorating and cleaning the house...
ha ha I can see our last pumpkin in the background.
While we were decorating it rained off and on making it feel more Christmas like. Ashley snuck out with my phone and got a great picture of a rainbow.
We asked the kids if they wanted to go to the movies. Taylor was doing homework all day, and Jacob and Ashley wanted to stay home so Jeff and I went to see Catching Fire since he never saw it.
(It was good enough I didn't mind seeing it again!)
Saturday was their last fun day off of school. Ashley had been begging me to go skating all week and it hadn't happened. So while Jeff was busy at home I took the kids along with the Cowden kids to the skating rink.
They had fun but they got tired out quickly. All that staying up late and laying around caught up with them, hee hee.
My new favorite tradition is taking the Christmas cards we got last year and scrapbooking them and hanging them on the fridge. It's a great way to feel like we are surrounded by family and friends even though at times we feel to busy to see them as much as we would like!