Monday, December 22, 2008

Escape from the Snow and a cousin Jubilee

Well, the snow continues in Portland. On one of our wintery afternoons we hooked up with Grandma and Grandpa Steves over the internet video and had a little Christmas party where I got to open all sorts of awesome gifts. In addition to warm jammies for everyone, I really enjoyed the Bob the Builder (TALKING!) tool belt from Aunt Tammi & Uncle Eddie and my new leggo set from the Grandfolks! We even opened up some treats from Santa Jim and I got creative with the Mister Potato Head and enjoyed some Dr. Seuss. We had another few snow days (and enjoyed my first hot cocoa) and ended up leaving for our vacation a day early because the weather cleared a bit and another storm was on the way... so we grasped at our window of okay weather, loaded up the dog, left the Chickens to toughen up in the snow with our housesitter (they are actually doing well in this weather... though perhaps Goldie would beg to differ... yep it's darned cold, but they are eating and eggs continue) and headed to Ashland for the night. We pulled over at the motel just as the snow advisory was insisting upon chaining up. The next morning Siskyou pass was still needing chains, but at least the incessent snowing had ceased and the temperature was creaping above freezing so less ice to worry about.
Anyhow... at long last we made it to Great-Uncle Dudley and Great-Auntie Gigi's house! Not only did I get to see them, but Cousins Derek, Debbie and Kellen are all in town for the holidays. We had a great time and enjoyed wonderful food! I was happy to run around with Kellen after two long travel days. The next morning to ensure that I actually got some sort of exercise we went to the park with Kaylee, Clark, Kellen, Jason, Ann, Derek and Debbie for a big walk / hop / ride / run! It was so wonderful to get outside and enjoy some sunshine. After our tour of the great outdoors,
video
Kaylee, Jason and I raced around the grass... I got a little sidetracked... "follow that line" was too vague for me and I found another one to follow. When we all returned to G'Auntie Gigi and G'Uncle Dudley's house we had another great surprise... G'Auntie Geralyne, G'Uncle Mark, Grandpa Tom and Grandma Terri had arrived for a party! We had a great Christmasy afternoon... complete with a big yummy lunch, cookie decorating and present opening! I am totally diggin the Christmas season. Cookie decorating courtesy of G'Auntie Geralyne was so fun and full of sprinkles, and how could present opening ever go poorly. So many new great toys, wonderful books and cute clothes. I had a great day. It is such a treat to spend my time with my cousins and aunties and uncles and all of the family. We all had such fun playing together. Clark is getting to be so big and so cute we had a great time walking around the yard with Uncle Jason., and Kellen is the perfect buddy for a good book, a laundry basket flight with Uncle Derek, or watching movies.... Kaylee is my favorite for fun outside, chatting and telling jokes with.We rounded up our fantastic day with a visit to the docks to see the boats parade by with all sorts of Christmas lights and decorations on them. It was a beautiful sight with loads of funny and fun folks. I totally crashed after a fun bath with Kellen. Grandma, Grandpa and Scooter headed home with G'Auntie Geralyne and G'Uncle Mark (Thank you guys!) to get some sleep before heading to Fresno.
The next morning we had a great breakfast with the birthday girl Auntie Gigi... as well as the rest of the Cheu Clan before heading in for a little SF outing. We did a quick tour of Union Square to see the decorations. There was of course the wonderful tree and ice skaters to watch. My favorite was the windows of Macy's where the SPCA had puppies and kitties on display. I loved the kitties and wanted so much to take one home with me that I pretended I did. I held a pretend kitty and her pretend ball... one in each hand... most of the way back down through China Town. In an effort to get me to hold hands as we were walking around I finally placed my new friends securely in my pockets and was only really settled once Mom got me a little kitty coin purse in one of the shops... it's my new favorite lovey. We had a great lunch at Gold Mountain and got a load of dan ta at the Golden Gate bakery before heading out of town and to Fresno... finally! I was so happy to finally get to Grandma Terri and Grandpa Tom's house. Uncle Ryan arrived later that night and I'm having a blast playing with him. This morning we set up the train around the Christmas tree... and I proceeded to drive it rather wrecklessly for the rest of the morning. After my afternoon "rest" I enjoyed my first movie in the movie theatre with Grandma Terri and Grandpa Tom... We watched Bolt AND Desperaux... since the beginning of Bolt prooved a little too intense for Grandma Terri. I had a good time and loved the mouse and the princess and thought the dog and the kitty from Bolt were very cute and funny (we caught the mellower end of the dog movie). We all met up again, had some fun with the sculpture of people walking up a beam... and enjoyed a nice sushi dinner at Yoshinos followed by a great tour of a very well lit neighborhood. Even better was a visit to see the neighborhood Santa... I told him that I wanted a present and poof... he gave me a candy cane... just what I wanted! Pshew. Another busy day... sure am having a wonderful time! Happy Holidays everyone and I wish you a very merry christmas full of love and fun.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Celebrate.... Snow!

Have I mentioned that it turned cold? Well it has really really turned cold.... and snowy! This weekend has been spent around cookies, celebrations and snow! Saturday we hit the last Farmer's Market that we will be able to enjoy this season... so long farmers, cookie bakers, musicians, chefs... see you in the spring! It was actually pretty rainy and cruddy out, but Mom was determined, alas between the rain, umbrella and me, the camera didn't come out. Anyhow, the folks made cookies during my nap, then we headed over to Dr. and Mrs Sytsma's home for the lab Holiday Party. Something weird about "Dr. Mark's" and his house that brings out the wild child in me. I made myself immediately at home with lots of dancing, monster noises and music! We had a great time, ate good munchies, opened presents for a "Yankee Trade". I"m pretty happy with the glass fish mobile that Daddy ended up with. Dr. Mark even read us from his biomedical text book! After a good night's sleep, we woke up this morning to only the barest dusting of snow. Sometime between getting out of bed and eating breakfast a big snow storm came in and it has been snowing and freezing ever since. On the plus side... it's beautiful!!!! We got to spend a cosy day at home making (MORE!) cookies. I got to help more this time. Dad and I were in charge of cutting out and decorating while Mom baked and wrapped presents. We did a great job! I hope the neighbors like them :). We had a nice day trying to tuck in the Chickens as warmly as possible, with spurts of snow play, and lots of fun inside....including playing popcorn on the bubblewrap! video

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Lights...

We've decorated the tree! It's beautiful. I got to put our angel on the very top and decorated the lower bit myself! It looks nice with all of the decorations and lights on it and smells wonderful. I love the Christmas season... and am getting pretty excited about the stories that we've been reading and about Santa and his eight ... goats. Yep, I'm convinced that the reindeer are actually goats and talk all about rudolph the red nosed... goat. At least we got a picture as proof of his existence. This Thursday I came home to a special treat... a box of christmas presents from Grandma and Grandpa Steves and a box of treats from cousin Carolyn! I am particularly fond of the chocolate Santa that the folks give me a little piece of every night if I finish my dinner. Jim is back in town! I love hanging out with him, and he is the best at playing (for hours and hours) leggos. I'll do just about anything as long as Jim will too. On Saturday, we headed to the Farmers Market again. The piles and piles of mushrooms were too tempting, we got a bunch to make some risotto tonight. I got a few treats... cookies, biscuits, apple cider, and this week Mom got me a balloon monkey! He was so cute, though didn't stay on my arm like he was supposed to. After a good morning outside, the grown-ups tag teamed errands while I napped. That evening we headed over to the zoo for Zoo Lights with Alice, Robyn, Dan, Joaquin, Val and Ray.... a seriously impressive light display (and crowd!). Once we finally made it inside, we had a great evening watching all of the light displays and seeing some of the animals at night. My favorite remains the baby elephant... In addition to the great lights, we also enjoyed some hot apple cider and vanilla cake (Thanks Carolyn!). Today, Mom and I hung out while Jim and Dad went fishing. We had a nice day visiting with Joaquin and Val in the morning, taking Scooter for a short walk and and heading to the coffee shop (one of my favorite and specially requested destination) after finally getting ourselves out of the house. I had a good nap and pretty much played leggos all evening long. Man I'm lovin' these leggos!