Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas Day (or let the gift~opening marathon begin}

Gift~giving at Granny and Papa's was a whirlwind. These are the only two pictures I got...

On to Aunt Pam and Uncle Ronnie's house and again we find Mallory waiting like a good little girl to open her presents.

Li'l Cup Cake wearing her new chef's hat.
Next stop, Grandmom's. And what do we have here? Why, it is Mallory, yet again, seated so properly as she waits to open more presents. She was  all about the presents. Too funny!
Caught ya'!
A toy box full of dress up clothes...
High heels of her very own...
Is she a cowgirl or a fairy?
Whew! What a day. The girls skipped their nap, which meant they were asleep in the car before we made it home.

Christmas this year was so much fun. It was a long twenty~four hours but the girls were so good. I don't think they had a single fussy moment between them and enjoyed every moment.

Christmas Morning {or the first time I've seen Anna Claire and Mallory speechless in a long time}

The girls both woke up around 6:30 Christmas morning {Mallory showed up in our bedroom first followed shortly by Anna Claire}. At first, neither one of them said anything about Santa, then it sort of clicked, I guess. Well, before they could go out front, we needed to get the video camera set up and I had to get Mallory's hair pulled back out of her face! We had put a dog gate up in the hallway to keep the girls and the dogs from rushing into the living room too early. They were so funny waiting at the gate for us to let them in.
Making their way over to their new toys, they were both absolutely speechless. I don't think they knew what to look at first.
I think because the doll house was the biggest gift, that's where they landed first. They just didn't know what to think of it.
After thoroughly inspecting the doll house, they moved on to explore the other toys, books, and games Santa brought...

The girls really understood more this year what Santa was all about, but I still don't think they really knew what to expect. The video of them coming around the corner and first seeing all their gifts is priceless, so I'll have to try to upload it.

And, just so you know, we made sure the girls also understood as best they could what Christmas is really all about. If you asked them, they could tell you that baby Jesus was born on Christmas day and slept in a manger, that Mary is his mommy and Joseph is his daddy, and that three wise men {Mallory sometimes gets confused and thinks there were only two} visited baby Jesus and brought him gold, frankincense, and myrrh {that's another video I need to share}. I think that's pretty good for two~and~a~half!

Christmas Eve {or the night we said goodbye to Ernie}

Christmas Eve at GiGi's house was so much fun. The girls looked adorable in their red corduroy coat dresses and were so excited the whole night.

Here's Mallory waiting patiently in front of the tree to open presents.
 Anna Claire loves playing the piano. Could we have a future pianist in our family?
Say, "Click!" Take a pic!
 Anna Claire is trying to figure out how to use her new "walkie talker"
Back home saying goodbye to Ernie...
It was Mallory's great idea to take a picture of Ernie so we could remember him.
Putting out cookies and eggnog for Santa...
 ...and don't forget carrots for the reindeer.
One last picture in front of the tree before bedtime. The girls would not look at the camera {getting a bit tired by this time} nor would they put down their new baby doll strollers.
Visions of sugarplums.....

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Snow Day

What better way to be snowbound than with a house full of brand new toys?
It snowed just about all day today, but none of it stuck and the sun never came out, so we didn't even leave the house. Good thing the girls had plenty to entertain them.

"Playing" their first board game, Hi~Ho Cherry~O
 Toy Story 3...
I promise, Christmas pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Wow! We have had a busy 24 hours. The girls have had an amazing Christmas both at home and visiting all our family. Every time Mallory opened a gift she'd shriek, "I love it! I always wanted a ...." And every time Anna Claire opened a present she'd ask if she could take it home. Too cute.

All the details coming soon. It's gonna take a little while to recover. ;-)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Night Before the Night Before Christmas

The girls are asleep.
Walter is assembling the last present in the garage.
I just finished the last Christmas~gift~sewing~project.
All the gifts are wrapped and under the tree {except the one Walter is still putting together. How long has he been out there, anyway?}
Cookies for Santa have been decorated & baked.......

I think we're ready for Santa!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Fake it, Don't Bake It

More holiday baking? Not quite. I wasn't even going to attempt to bake sheets of gingerbread and then assemble it into a house stuck together with icing. No way! I bought the pre~made gingerbread house from Target, and the girls sure had a great time decorating it.

So Happy Together

The girls have been playing very well together lately. Much of the time, they are pretending to be Dora, Diego, Baby Jaguar, Boots, or Alicia. Other times they are mommy and baby. They also like to play school and pretend to be their teachers. Above, they are building the North Pole.

The older they get the more independently they play. That's bittersweet.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Take Notes, Ernie

Ernie has been with us for a few weeks now, and he's been doing a great job of updating Santa on whether the girls have been naughty or nice. Yesterday Mallory was getting a little fussy when Anna Claire looked up at our elf on the shelf and said, "Take notes, Ernie, take notes." {I think she's heard her Daddy say that a few times!}

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Holiday Baking

I wanted to get the girls involved in some holiday baking, but I didn't think they needed to help make the red velvet cookies I took to work {I wasn't about to mix little girls and red food coloring}.

I did think they could line up some pretzel snaps and top them with Hersey's kisses because they are really into sorting things and lining things us these days. They did a great job helping as long as they weren't trying to sneak bites into their mouths.
 This reminded me of polka dots...
 Which led to this...
A hostess gift for neighbor Nancy. {gift label idea from Darby}

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Playschool Christmas Program

Anna Claire and Mallory had their Christmas program and class party today at playschool. After dropping off the girls in their classroom with their teachers' gifts and goodies for the party, we took our front row seats in the auditorium and waited for the show to begin. So much for the front row seats. Because the littlest ones sat on the floor on the stage, the music teacher {who was standing on the floor in front of the stage} completely blocked our view. Walter even had to go stand against the wall to get video. {I've also decided I need a new lens for my camera because the pictures I did get hardly turned out.}

{don't let the look on Mallory's face fool you; there were lots of smiles}

The girls and all the children were adorable, though I can't share tons of photos. You'll have to take my word, then, that Mallory scooted herself to center stage near the beginning of the performance and had to be lured back to sit with the rest of the class and later pulled her dress up over her head. Yes, that was my child! I so wish I had a picture of it but I was too busy trying to get the teacher's attention so she could tell Mallory to pull her dress down. Walter did get it on video; one day she will be so embarrassed.

The girls were really so well-behaved, though. They sat still {for the most part}, and while I didn't see them actually singing very much {I think they were a little too awe~struck}, they did do some of the hand motions they learned, jingled their bells when they were supposed to, and smiled a lot. They did great and we are so proud!

After the program, we went back to the class for their Christmas party. The girls snacked on cookies, brownies, fruit, cheese, and nuggets. I tried to get a few pictures, but there were so many people in that tiny classroom. It was crazy, but fun.

Before it was time to go the girls had two Christmas gifts each for us...snowman hand print ornaments {you might remember the girls and I made these for their first Christmas} and a hand print calendar. It is adorable. I do not know where Mrs. Lori finds the time to complete these crafts when the girls only go to school two mornings a week. She is amazing and so is the calendar. For each month there is a picture the girls made using their hand prints and finger prints. They also brought home lots of little handmade ornaments for the tree. Yes, they have been busy, and I will have to take some pictures of their Christmas crafts and share with you...later.

Wow! I cannot believe half of the school year is already over {tomorrow is my last day ~ yay!} and that Christmas is right around the corner. I am so ready to start Christmas break!