Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

We love puzzles, it is one of our favorite things to do. 
It is kind of becoming a tradition to work on one while staying at my parent's house.
We started this puzzle on New Year's Eve. 

Later that evening we headed over to Jordan and Emily's house for some Chinese food and games.
It was lots of fun. 

Okay, tangent:
In our next house I want a race track! 
A floor plan that allows the kids to run around something. 
Jordan and Emily have a race track in their kitchen.
 Jordan was such a trooper to chase the kids around it. They LOVED it!
We had lots of fun hanging out with you guys. Thanks for spending New Year's with us!

This is a couple of days later. But here is Sarah with our completed puzzle (she put in the last piece).

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Hanging with June Bug

December 29th

My brother and sister-in-law were nice enough to let us kick them out of their house to play with June Bug for an evening. 
And boy did we have FUN!
 Isn't Junie the Cutest!

We had a little tea party.

Sarah LOVED the rocking horse (if it goes missing Deb, don't look here for it)

We splashed in the tub together.

Read stories and snuggled.

And then everyone climbed into bed with June at bedtime.

It was so much fun! Thanks for letting us get a little cousin time in with Junie.
We love and miss you June Bug!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Newey Family Pictures

While we were in Utah we got some family pictures taken! 
They turned out so beautiful! I LOVE them. 
Can't wait to get these printed!
You can see the whole family preview HERE. I just wish Alisha could follow my little family around all day everyday and capture all of our family memories... but settling for a once a year deal isn't too shabby. Thanks again Alisha. We LOVE them!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Lights on Temple Square

December 28th

We went with the Stephenson's to see the lights on Temple Square. 
It was really fun, except for the fact that we got there REALLY late and it was extremely COLD!
It was the first time the girls had seen them and they loved it.  

Here's our little posse.

The main attraction.

Sarah was such a lil' turkey. She whined her way into getting G'ma Lisa to carry her.
(Hope your arms have recovered Lisa)

We stopped in the Joseph Smith Memorial building for a little bit (it was the only place still open with a restroom).
It was so nice and warm in there. 

It was a beautiful night with fun company. 
Lets do it again next year... and maybe go a little earlier in the night... and on a warmer night. 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

At G'ma Lisa's

Yes... I'm still catching up. I have some cute things to post about, and I won't let myself until I'm all caught up. So here is a little more from our Trip to Utah. 

December 26th

Ryan's mom has the best collection of toys! She kept EVERYTHING that her kids played with. So every time we head over to G'ma Lisa's house we always get to play with some new toy.

Like the Alligator Dentist. 
Abby was so funny, she would hold the alligators mouth so that when she pushed the tooth that would make his mouth shut it wouldn't squish her hand.

G'ma Lisa sure is funny too! 
 Somewhere there is a picture of Sarah about Abby's age wearing these same glasses. 
I think it may be on G'ma Lisa's camera. 

Playing with more toys on the kitchen floor. 

Even though we love to play with toys and games, Grandpa discovered a new way to their hearts. 

Thanks for having so much fun with us G'ma Lisa & G'pa Mark!
We love you!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Second Christmas

Or should I call it the Utah Christmas? I don't know. 

Either way it was wonderful (despite the upset tummies we were all battling). 

Before I talk about Christmas Day I want to quickly talk about Christmas Eve. 
This year Christmas Eve was with my family. 
(Which I forgot my camera, darn it... so sorry, no pictures)
My sister is gracious enough to host it at her house (which is great because there is lots of space for the kids to run around). 

After eating a delicious dinner we played our traditional "Hide the thimble game" and then moved on to our Christmas Talent show. 
We've been doing this for years, and yet every year someone (usually one of my brothers *cough*Pat*cough*) swears that we've never done this before. 
This year we helped Sarah to learn the Primary song "Picture a Christmas" We started practicing in early December to help Sarah to understand the true meaning of Christmas. Anyway, we sang in the car as we ran errands, at night before bed, while we were getting dinner ready. all of the time. So when it came time to preform she knew it perfectly and did a wonderful job. She enjoyed the attention SO much that she didn't want to give up the spotlight. 
She also wanted to sing the Beatles "Ticket to Ride" but that didn't really end up working out. 
Ryan preformed a cool Jon Schmidt song he practiced hard to learn. 
My talent wasn't actually finished in time to really oo and aw over, but for my talent I worked on my crochet skills and knit all of the cousins owl hats for Christmas. I'll post about those later. 

After those who wanted to share a talent were done my mother read her Christmas story that she wrote for the year and shared a thought and a little gift with each of us. 
I love my mother's stories. 
She is always too critical of them and thinks they are silly, but I look forward to them every year. 
I mean how many mothers write a new story to share with their families on Christmas Eve!

We then did our gift exchange and that was pretty much it for the evening. 
I love hanging out with my family. They are so much fun. 

Christmas Day

Since we were staying at my parents house Santa stopped by there and filled some stockings and left little presents there for the girls to discover that morning. 

Here is our classic stair shot, looking lovely as ever. 

The spread. 
The main gift was originally just going to be the super hero capes (which Santa stayed up until 6am finishing Christmas morning...with a little elf who stayed up helping until 2 or 3am (thanks again mom!)) 

But, my mom found the Kirstin doll at the DI (naked but in beautiful condition) and I had an old Samantha doll (who had an extra outfit to share) that I left behind when we moved, and so we decided to add it to the Christmas morning surprise. It was fun, even though it will probably be a couple of years until the girls really begin to enjoy them. 
Abby was pretty thrilled about them. She ran right over and snagged them up!

Both of the girls were pretty hungry so we took a quick pause to let them eat a banana.

Back to the presents. 
The girls tried on their capes and loved them!

Sarah got a cape that was Superman on one side, and Wonderpets on the reverse.

And Abby got a Batman and Princess cape. 
I, er "Santa" used costume silk for the fabric, so they are silky and move like real super hero capes. 
The insignias were cut out from felt, layers fused together and then fused and sewn onto the capes 
(my helper elf, aka my mom, sewed the signs... THANK YOU!)
My favorite part about this cape design is that there is no tie, snap or velcro to do up. The neck line is completed with an elastic band, so the girls can just slip them on and off all by themselves. It pretty much rocks (except for the fact that I didn't have the girls to test out the size on before hand, so I had to resize it after so they could get it off and on easier, I made it a tad too small the first time)

The girls then opened their presents from G'ma & G'pa Newey.
Abby got a book that my parents narrated, and an adorable set of Max & Ruby dolls.  

Sarah got a Calico Critters house. She loves it! 
And the little bunny doll looks like Ruby, so she loved it even more!

I just thought Abby looked hilarious in this picture!

We then hurried off to the Stephenson's home so that we could chat with Ryan's brother Chris on the phone. Chris is serving his mission in Brazil right now. 

Then on to more presents with G'ma & G'pa Stephenson.
Abby got a shopping cart (that is adored by all children that come to our house) and a ball popper. 
I love this ball popper. It doesn't make the loud air blowing noise that I've seen others do, and it plays music, which my little singer Abby loves! 
Her favorite thing to do is put her face right down where the balls come out and let them hit her in the face. Here is her reaction afterward. 

Sarah got a book with a gazillion little Toy Story figures and a remote control Strawberry Shortcake car. 
Her is Grandpa Mark helping Sarah get the batteries in. 

It was a very fun and relaxing Christmas day. The girls played with their new toys, had fun chasing the kitty and spending lots of time giggling with G'ma & G'pa. I took a long nap to sleep off my late night. We vegged the entire day and enjoy every second. It was perfect!

Merry Christmas!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas!

Friday, December 24, 2010

S.O. L.A.M.E.

So we thought we were in the clear of this little bug.

No such luck.

Sarah has been sick pretty much every other day since Monday. Poor kiddo.

Last night it started all over again for Sarah... plus Abby joined in on the fun. Yeah!
Simultaneous! double yeah...

Luckily I was still up working on some projects... so I was able to hand Sarah the garbage can (which saved me from stripping her bedding down in the middle of the night and search for more blankets. Abby, unfortunately made a mess, but at least it was contained in the pack n' play. yuck

I spent the night sleeping on the floor in their room... we didn't have any more mishaps... but every time they would move in their sleep it would wake me up. I'm. Tired.

And still have projects to finish.

Isn't life with kids fun?!!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

In the News

Before we left for Utah I went to Phipps Conservatory with a couple of friends of mine.
Well, while we were scoping out the trains a man was taking lots and lots of pictures of everything. 

Then, he started taking pictures of Sarah looking at the trains. 

Turns out he was a photographer with the Pittsburgh Tribune. 

Our little miss photogenic got herself a picture in the paper!
{How special Sarah!}

It was in the December 23rd paper and my friend was sweet enough to save it for me. 
Thanks Jess!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Zombie Flu and Vampires

Our little family went a little under radar after the Aurich Christmas Party. We caught some odd stomach bug that kept us all out of commission (forcing us to miss some fun parties and stuff...*sad face*). Sarah had it the longest, poor girl. Couldn't keep anything down for a day or two, be fine and then wake up in the middle of the night to start all over. 
I became an expert bed-washer and completely broke in my parent's new washer and dryer (which are amazing...*sigh* one day...) I also helped my mom with her spring cleaning by laundering pretty much everything in her linen closest... you're welcome mom. Sar-Bear was a champ and handled it really well. 

The morning of Christmas Eve both girls woke up in the middle of the night and at the same time, lost their dinner. I had to call for reinforcements because I didn't know how to handle both going at the same time. The oddest thing is that the girls would be sick, and then would act like nothing had happened. They weren't cranky, lethargic or anything. Just had problems keeping stuff down and had upset tummies. 

So I guess the girls had the stomach flu, but to me I'm going to call it the Zombie Flu. Because, for like a week+ we all felt like zombie's, or maybe just Ryan and I caught the zombie flu and the girls had the stomach flu. Staying up way too late, then waking up in the middle of the night to throw a fresh batch of laundry in, and then getting up with the girls again when they woke up for the day. Pretty interesting way to spend a week of our vacation. Ryan and I got a little bit of the upset stomach, but that was it.  

Unfortunately we shared the love a little. This bug was highly contagious. So sorry to any friends and family who inadvertently caught the the stomach or the zombie flu from us. We didn't mean to. 

There is a hiccup in pictures, another side-effect of the zombie flu, but I did manage to get this one of Sarah on a day she was feeling fine. 
She had a lot of fun pretending to be a vampire. Unfortunately, I think she re-contaminated herself by playing with it repeatedly before, during and after she was sick. Upon realizing this, the teeth promptly became "lost" and helped stop the zombie flu cycle we'd entered. 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Aurich Christmas Par-tay

Every year we attend the Aurich Family Christmas Party (Ry's Grandparents)
It is a blast, this family rocks and is always good for a laugh or two. 

One of the things that I love the most about this family is that they will instantly love you. I remember the first time going over to there house and Ryan's Grandma & Grandpa instantly threw there arms around me and treated me as if I'd always been in the family. Love them so much.

Anyway, on to the festivities. 

We had a special visit from "Skinny Santa" (aka Dillan)
He brought a little gift for all of the kids (and a nice gift for the couples too!)

You had to sit on his lap to get your gift. 

I made Ryan do it so I wouldn't squish Skinny Santa.

Then all of the little kids got to open their presents from Grandma Sandy & Grandpa Jerry.
Abby got this adorable laugh and learn purse. We love it!

Sarah got a glow station. It is pretty cool. 
We just made a space to hang it up in her closet so she can close the door part way and play with it more... it does work in the daylight, just not as well. 

We ate, had fun laughing and chatting and made sure to have lots of fun wrestling and running around. 
Here Sarah is playing with G'pa Mark.

Were you curious why there is a blue tarp on the floor?
Well this isn't your average family Christmas party. The gift exchanges at this party are pretty entertaining to watch. Why?
Because the presents are "Boobie-Trapped" - usually involving rolls of duct tape and something goopy.

This year, we let the kiddos do the hard core boobie-trapping and the adults took it easier and did gag gifts. 

My favorite was what Ryan's brother and wife did. 
Jord & Em... you are geniuses!
They drew Aunt Amy's name and made her do various things to earn her gift. 
(doing a 30 second dance, singing one verse of a song, etc.) 
The last task had us all rolling on the floor laughing. They asked for two volunteers to help out. Immediately Amy's siblings Adam and Logan jumped up to participate. 

They had a head-bobbling-athon. 
That's right... you read that correctly. 
Each competitor tied a pedometer to their forehead and then had to bobble it in any way they wanted for a minute to see who could get the most bobbles. 
In order for Amy to win her gift she had to finish in the top two. 
Funniest. Minute. Ever.
Hahaha... oh, I love this family!

As for our gift, we got a picture that we will hold dear and treasure forever. 
It is even valuable as it is autographed by the artist. 
"Adam Gaga"
Fits in perfectly with our mantel display, don't you think?

Thanks for such a fun party G'ma Sandy & G'pa Jerry. 
We love you guys so much!