Sunday, December 30, 2007

Merry Christmas to All!

I hope you all have had a wonderful Christmas! Ours was pretty special. On Christmas eve we went to Church and I got to sit up front for a lot of the service and put a star on the manger at the end of the Christmas story they told us. I was a little nervous, but knew I had a job to do, so ran up in the end and after the rush of the kids running all around me... found the perfect place for my star. Christmas morning... SANTA CAME! Really... I'm not sure how he worked the chimney and gas stove business, but he managed to visit, eat some cookies and leave us some treats! Santa left me a fish tank... It didn't have fish in it yet except for my plastic bath fish... I still thought it was very cool and just stared at it for quite a while saying "rock"...."fish".... "rock"... "fish". I got all sorts of other wonderful gifts: A few sets of new pajamas... that I had to try on immediately! Some cool toys in my stocking, an awesome fish hat that matched my sweat suit, a ball toboggan, loads of wonderful books (we've already read through all of them at least five times!), a basket ball hoop (but the weather needs to perk up before we do that one), a snow globe, and some crazy fishing lure launcher that mom and dad only let me play with for a few minutes before hiding it away... probably for themselves later. Anyhow, let me tell you, this was lots of fun! I also had fun talking to Grandma Terri, Grandpa Tom and Uncle Ry on the webcam. I showed off some of my toys and wished them a merry Christmas. We stayed in our jammies for most of the day. Took a break from present opening to make and eat some Norwegian pancakes, though I was too excited to eat more than a few bites. Soon after things were all opened, sometime just before my nap, it started to snow! We had a bona fide white Christmas! It was enough to play with for a bit, Daddy and I even made a few snow balls. I LOVED it! We had so much fun, Scooter was going a bit crazy too. All in all a good day... and late that night, while I was asleep... we had more visitors. Grandma and Grandpa Steves came for a Christmas visit! I was so happy to see them when I woke up. In addition to their wonderful smiling faces, they brought presents! We got Christmas all over again. I've been enjoying the indoor tent they gave me for Christmas soo much... In fact I use it more like a hamster ball rolling all over the living room. They also came with books from Aunt Tammi, Uncle Eddie and Great Aunt JoAnn and Great Uncle Rich. I also have a bit of a cold, so have been happiest sitting in the rocker reading all of these great books (over and over and over again). We had a fun day-after-christmas. The second most exciting part of the day (other than waking up to see my Grandfolks in the living room) was going to the fish store (this great'un called the Wet Spot) and picking out my new roomie. Meet "Owen's fish" that's what I call him. I love watching him swim and eat and he totally calms me down when I'm feeling a little under the weather. "Owen's fish" is very interesting and soothing. A little later that week, the Grandfolks took a bus, a streetcar, a train and a car up to Marysville, WA to visit their friend over night. When they got back on Friday night, we got a bunch of crab for a great crab dinner. Those crab tanks are pretty cool, especially watching the guy reach right in and grab a few big'uns for us. We followed our crab feast up with a dim sum breakfast the next morning. I love watching all of the carts and people go around and I think Grandma and Grandpa Steves thought the food was pretty good too (it was their first Dim Sum experience). When we got home, I drove Scooter around for a bit before taking my nap. The rest of the weekend we spent a lot of time playing in that tent, but also got to enjoy a few nice afternoons riding my bike around.Turns out it's a major present season. In addition to two christmas mornings... I also enjoyed an early birthday. Grandma and Grandpa Steves got me some leggos and a big digger truck. We played and played with those toys. My favorite is getting them to build things and I'd run them down with the digger truck, or dump the leggos on the floor after we pick them up. Grandma Steves and I also made playdough at home.... in yellow, my favorite color. We had lots of fun making shapes and smushing them! Today, we made some pancakes (yum). During my nap, mom had the bright idea for Daddy and Grandma and Grandpa Steves to walk down to Woodstock (not quite a mile away) and check out the German Sausage place, Otto's, that they had been eyeing since they got there. It was sunny when they left, the sausages were good, but it was raining then snowing on their way back. The group returned drenched and chilly. After their coats had dried out a bit, Mom, Dad, Grandpa Steves and I went out to Hawthorne St for a walk around and to pick up some fresh pasta from pastaworks for dinner. We played when I got back, read lots of books and ended our really nice visit with some time in the tent and with leggos. I've been a little cranky with the cold and all, but rallied for some play time, some books and a kiss goodnight. They take off late tonight and I am sure to miss them tons! I hit another milestone the past few weeks. I've started using the potty! We're not canceling the diaper service yet... but after holding me on the big toilet for a week, they finally went out and got me my own little potty. Modesty prevents us from posting any adequate pictures, but let me tell you... we're pretty excited!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Twas the night before the night before ...

You know what makes the holidays really feel special? Visits from special people! On Tuesday, I got to play with Matt and Linda who came over for Dad (or G'Auntie Gigi's) famous chili crab. Thank goodness there is still fresh dungeness up in Portland! We had a nice evening, it was fun to be able to spend some time with them! I've also been tackling my advent house that Grandma Terri assembled for me. I really like opening a door and finding a little gift every day in preparation for Christmas. A kid could get used to this! I've also been practicing some photography. I especially like taking pictures of my "Nai-nai" (or my milk). Though have got some sweet shots of the fan and one self portrait.

There have been all sorts of special treats Friday, we headed downtown after daycare to visit the big S... yep to see SANTA! I've been seeing pictures of him everywhere! Well after a brief wait the big moment arrived and it all ended up being a bit too much for me and that Jolly ol' Elf scared me at the last minute and the folks just weren't up for another sad santa pic so we finished up the evening looking around at the lights in Pioneer Square... they have a really big tree that was pretty cool. In spite of the rough start, I ended up having a nice time. Saturday, we headed to the last Farmer's Market of the season, picked up some mushrooms and some cool romanesco then checked out the Esty PDX craft fair. The fair was much less crazed than the super winter wonderland so I had a good time chatting with all of the vendors. Mom and I made some gingerbread together after my nap in preparation for the big fun later on! I had to wash my hands a lot in the process. Lots of messes. That evening our friends Caden, Matt and Cascade came by for a visit! It was soo nice to see them! They have been missed. We had a yummy dinner of fresh pasta and mushrooms from the market. Caden and I played hard all evening long. We settled down and cleaned up with a fun bath. After we hit the hay, the folks relaxed with a game of killer bunnies and some time just catching up. Sunday morning, Dad made us some fantastic pancakes then we headed over to the Children's museum for a few hours. We started with the fun water room, and when we finally got out of that... we explored all of the rooms I had seen with Mommy before and a few more. I got to play in a grocery store, with clay, a train set and best of all a xylophone!

Caden and I rocked the xylophone. We settled down for our long(-ish) winter nap before they had to go. I cried to see them drive off, I had such a lovely weekend. I've been dancing the last few weeks. Like my dancin' shoes? Well they're mom's, but I still have some pretty good moves in them. Merry Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

The holidays are definitely here! We have had a fun and Christmas-y week. I am finally in my groove with daycare and am doing well... as my teacher says, my mood has been "Super Awesome!". Tuesday with Mommy, we painted... I called this one fishes and owls. This Thursday, Mom and I went to the Zoo and had a great time. It was pretty cold, so we pretty much had the zoo to ourselves. Actually most of the animals were hiding out in the cold, but we did see some zebras, a few monkeys, elephants, peacocks and then just as we were getting ready to go.... zoolights came on.... we may try to spend some more time admiring the impressive light display soon. Friday evening we finally picked out our tree... it's the most beautiful one mom and dad have ever had! It turns out that this part of Oregon is christmas tree central for the whole country, so we had our pick of the best. We went to Mt Hood tree farm, it had a beautiful view and lots of nice trees so it didn't take us long. Daddy cut it down and loaded up on the car (I made sure it was secure). The folks decorated it after I went to sleep, and I have been moving ornaments around on the bottom since, just to make sure that they are perfect. This weekend I've been on a bit of a nap strike, which makes things a bit touchy in the afternoons here. Saturday we went to the Saturday Market in downtown... it's sort of a big art market. The best was this great xylophone band that had me totally mesmerized the best part was that it was about 8 skater dude teens who totally rocked the xylophones! Anyhow, that evening we went to the lab Christmas party at Dr. Sytsma's house. After a quiet start (I was napping in the car) I really ended up having a blast. There were lots of kids there... Karlee, Benjamin, Joaquin, and Genevieve. Genevieve and I spent lots of time spinning together and flying off the steps (with the help of Dr. Sytsma and Mom).

I stayed up super late, and didn't even snooze in the car on the way home. Today we tried to go to the Super Crafty wonderland... which was like the craziest craft show ever. Actually, Daddy and I had to leave, it was that crazy. Mom, Val, Robin, Joaquin and Alice seemed to have a good time though. I just fought a nap off, helped clean the garage and make dinner. Pshew I'm pooped.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Oh-ie Mee-Nup

So... a few months ago, I started chanting Mee-Nup.... Mee-Nup. My folks would just scratch their heads and keep on going. Finally, just before our vacation... they figured it all out... "Mee-Nup" is Clean-up! YAY! I've been picking up after them forever.... hinting all this time that perhaps they could pitch in and lend a hand and now they get it. After realizing my penchant for "neatness" (mom thinks the quotes are very important there... perhaps our definitions don't agree), they started putting me to work. When I was talking to Mom earlier this week, while she was wiping Scooter's paws I told her "Doggie - mess" "yep" she said... then I said... "Mommy - mess" "oh really?" she said... finally "Owie Mee-Nup". I guess someone has to keep this place in order.

This weekend, Daddy headed back to our old stomping grounds to say hi to our friends in Occidental and at the farmhouse, get some fishing in, and pick up his truck. Mommy and I had a great time. She kindly didn't schlep me around Christmas shopping like she did during our days together earlier this week (though the toy stores weren't so bad). On Saturday we went to the farmer's market, which was lots of fun, I always get lots of compliments and snacks there. Afterwards, we were going to head to the zoo, but since I was doing my best Popsicle impression, we opted for the indoor fun at the Children's Museum. It was cool a few weeks ago without electricity, but with electricity... what fun! I was moving so fast, we only have a few half-baked pictures to show for all of the fun we had. BUT, there is a cool water play area that I spent lots of my time at. I spent some time pretending I was Grandpa Tom, teaching a croc how to brush. My favorite was this gizmo where you stick little balls into this tube, press a button and woosh... they shoot up the tube to the ceiling, spin around in this contraption and roll back down to do it all again. We even ran into our neighbors Harmony and Sophia! We got to play together in the play ambulance and in the dig pit. Anyhow, I had a good nap to recover. That evening Mommy and I started on some christmas cookies. I mixed and mixed. You probably figure I am good at this by now, and I sure am! Though it's very difficult and serious work.To add to my cooking repertoire (and to reclaim the cookie dough after it had been mixed for a long time), Mommy let me clean-up the dishes. Now this is where I excel! I cleaned and cleaned and cleaned... the dishes, the cupboards, the floor, and even myself! Cleaning sure does take a lot of water and changes of clothes. Today was pretty mellow. I had a rambunctious morning at church but we left to find it SNOWING! Nothing to stick, but definitely snowing. We stayed inside for much of the rest of the day, finished up making the cookies in the afternoon and just took a quick walk in the chilly evening. I helped put powder sugar on the crinkle cookies, although, there was too much powdered sugar all over for Mommy to consider taking the camera out... well, let's just leave it at that. Anyhow, I again spent a good amount of time "cleaning-up" afterwards. Daddy came home just in time for dinner! I was so happy to see him.. so is Mommy! Plus we were jealous that he got to spend some time with James and his family, so we had to hear all about it before we read Night before Christmas, said g'night to Scooter and headed off to bed.