Monday, December 31, 2007

take a hike

today we took a hike...

it was a beautiful day.  sunny, clear and cool...

we followed the trail...

we were the kings of the world...

we found ginormous leaves...

we even found a star!

we found a stream and had a snack...

we found the rocky river.  we peed in the woods and wiped with leaves.

it was a good day for all of us.

happy new year!

Monday, December 24, 2007

fashion plates

are you a child of the 80's?  do you remember fashion plates?  did you HAVE fashion plates?  or maybe your kids have a newer incarnation of the classic tomy toy?  anyhow, fashion plates were an art toy where you mixed and matched fashions, each in raised plastic on it's own plate, and did a crayon rubbing of your creation.  once you had your girl done, you could add your own colors-- and even textures!  the textures were on the back side of each plate.  i stole this image from somebody on ebay.

my incomplete set, partially melted by attic heat, is vintage from bygone days.  the featured fashions are gauchos, feathered hair and neck scarves circa turn-of-the-decade 80's.  i'm not quite sure how it survived garage sales and purge-fests, but somehow it lived to be used again by my darling daughter.  it's been a great way to pass the anxiety filled hours leading up to christmas morning.

of course, my little sweetheart can't just make fashion combos.  she has made "owl-girl"-- a completely brown, scallop-textured lady, and these multi-headed monsters shown below.  she's cackled her way through science experiment after science experiment in true frankensteinian glee.

i hope that you and your families all have a wonderful christmas (if that is, indeed, what you celebrate) and that santa has you on his NICE list.

Friday, December 14, 2007

a few of my favorite things...

j at tagged for a meme about my 12 favorite things about christmas.  here goes nothing!

1. the smell of the fresh cut pine tree in the house.  i keep threatening to buy a pre-lit fake tree and avoid the hassle, but i would sorely miss that scent.

2. christmas carols.  i just love to sing along to the old standards like bing crosby's "white christmas."

3. rudolph, frosty, the grinch, and the peanuts christmas special.

4.  buying way too many of the fun things the kids want and having an excuse for it.

5.  watching the kids open those way too many gifts.

6.  christmas lights strung on houses.  i wish we lived in a neighborhood where the houses were more visible.  those 'hoods where each house is glittering in the night are wonderful.  as a kid we spent many christmases at my grandparents' trailer park in florida.  almost every place was decorated and we reveled in it.  here is a photo of me at maybe 8 years old in florida...

7.  i was feeling scroogey this year, but begrudgingly went to lowe's on december 1st, bought a damn tree, heaved it into the back of the minivan cursing at the dropped needles and heaved it back out into the garage at home.  swearing at the pine sap all over my hands, i sawed the end off with an angry vigor and dragged the thing through the house, all the while uttering oaths under my breath.  i screwed the damn thing into the damn stand, and that's all the christmas spirit i could take that day.  i told the kids we'd get out the decorations tomorrow.  not to be deterred, they spent the rest of their afternoon diligently cutting, pasting, stickering and sculpting their own homemade ornaments and hanging them eagerly on the tree.  i cried.  they brought the spirit back to me, and i got out the lights and tinsel.  here is an ornament made by s...

8. the pink tinsel tree in s's room that she chose when she was about 2.  it still suits her personality so perfectly, and i love getting it out each year and putting it in her room.

9.  those soft peppermint stick candies.  not regular candy canes but the kind that melt in your mouth, or that you can poke into an orange and suck the orange juice through.  does anybody know what i'm talking about?

10.  the angry throngs of pissy christmas shoppers packed like sardines into understaffed department stores.  just kidding!  at christmas, i LOVE being home with my family, just like the crabby hermit that i am.

11. the madame alexander christmas angel that t and i bought together for our first tree.  i have collected and loved madame alexander dolls since before i can remember, and having her on the top of our tree each year reminds me of all the christmases that we've been a family.

12.  remembering our first christmas with h.  he was a little over a month old, and he was the best christmas present we could ever imagine.  there was a freak ice storm that year, and we were without power for 3 days.  we mostly stayed at our friends' apartment for whom we were pet sitting, but on christmas morning we bundled up and went home to our frigid little house.  we snuggled with our bitty baby while we opened the few gifts we had, and it was really just the warmest christmas i can remember.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

santa photo: version 2008

the kids and i played hooky today.

well, not REALLY.  they did have a dental checkup to make our day off legit, but we did have fun with the rest of our day.

first, h spent his birthday $$ on an ipod shuffle.  the cool special edition RED one, too.  good choice for a 9 year old boy, huh?

then s spent her saved allowance (and some certificates i had) on a polar bear at build-a-bear.  she named it knut after "knut the cute" from the berlin zoo.

then we visited santa.  s asked for an american girls OUTFIT (the blue one that matches the just like me doll she got last year from santa).  h asked for avatar: the burning earth video game for his xbox.  santa looked befuddled.

we went to the park to bask in the 80 degree record-breaking heat.

it's nice to take a day off from school, isn't it?

Friday, December 07, 2007

is the world ready?

t went on an escapade today with his friend sean from pop the cap.

as a token of love, he brought me back a beer.

i know you're thinking... "that looks DISGUSTING!"  but let me tell you... it wasn't just disgusting.  it was vomitously vile.  it was rancidly revolting.  it was... it was... many other alliterative descriptions.

why on earth would anyone market this spew?  i mean, i always say i'll eat just about anything, and, true to my word, i tried it.  but it was just plain gross.

would YOU drink this?  and not just ONE sip as i did, but the full 24 fluid ounces?  *gag*