Sunday, December 18, 2011

Monday Morsels: a little celebrating

Last week we busily prepared for an early Christmas celebration with Rob's family.  I finished a doll for our niece, we made some sparkly ornaments, canned some of that cranberry comopote (here), cleaned like crazy (my new "studio" is also the guest room, which meant all of my projects had to be stashed away and the place made over into something a little less like the fabric scrap/thread end tornado it had become.)  We decorated with evergreens and berries, changed sheets, blew up air mattresses, froze banana bread, defrosted the turkey, and created space to entertain an extra six people and one more large dog.
It really was worth it.


* Our advent calender features a family activity for each evening up to Christmas.  It is clear this year, our third year with it, that some activities kind of suck.  A few will need to be revised because the kids have outgrown them, and some need to be ditched altogether. I can't wait to here what the kids come up with as suggestions for replacements.  Last week's lantern walk continued to be a work in progress (the last two years were near disasters.  It sounds lovely I know, but grouchy toddlers, surly children, darkness, cold, and fire have a way of mixing badly despite my best intentions).  This year was a rocky start, but it turned around quickly and was fun after all.  I'm not ready to ditch it yet, but its clear I'll need to do some serious prep work in order to pull off the lantern walk I'm hoping for.   Lanterns aside, we all enjoyed the following day's activity:  creating this centerpiece, and several smaller bouquets through out house.  

* Wylie used his greens to decorate this pump he wired.  The clay sculpture is a sheep spitting water-- why not?  If you look closely you can see a snake skin adorning the cardboard container (which houses the pump--salvaged from one some small appliance he's collected).  It actually looked quite nice when he had it all decorated with greenery covering the wires--but inevitably one of the connections came loose, or perhaps the battery died.  In either case the project was abandoned, which was fine because Wylie is always about the process (with a very clear view of the product mind you)  and once its completed he's done with it.  Maybe my lantern walk will be like that?

* Reality check:  This is what our kitchen looks like a lot of the time.  I didn't show you the floor, on purpose.

* Remember those fugly pinecones? The water didn't work.  But, my biologist sister out west informed us that pine cones release their seeds when conditions are right for seed sowing ie. warm and clear (not wet and cold--right.)  So we put them on the wood stove and viola:  Big beautiful pine cones.  What a great trick.  

* Rob comes from a line of card players.  Any gathering with the Fowler's is spent playing any number of games around the table.  This weekend we learned a new one,  Marbles.  Its basically "Sorry" with cards.  This is the first time that kids have joined the adults in some of the games.  It kind of felt like the beginning of something new, instead of the parents taking turns between hands, the kids joined us at the table.  And they weren't chewing on the cards (most of them anyway).  I love some of the things we can do together now that they're getting older.  Thanks Grandma for teaching them the rules!

* Toddlers busy in the kitchen.

* One of many thoughtful gifts the kids received were these blocks.  They came from "Roy Toy" and are hand made in Maine.  They are basically Lincoln Logs, but come in kits to build a few different options.  They were a hit with all the kids. (The trucks were made by Grampy for Wylie's first Christmas).

* As a finally finale to the weekend Juniper lost her first tooth!  It was an emotional affair with a fair amount of tears and grouchiness leading up to surprising bravery as she allowed Rob to pull it out.  Hooray.  We were all ready for that thing to come out.

Happy Monday!

1 comment:

  1. Your kitchen looks like ours most days, it seems like as soon as you clean it it's messy again!

    Looks like Christmas with the Fowler's was fun, I don't get why our family never got into the cards/board games, they are a lot of fun.


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