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Showing posts with the label holidays

And it begins...

Our traditions are a big part of our family life, from apple picking in the mountains to choosing a Christmas Tree from the same corner lot every year. These traditions are what the kids talk about when they look forward to the next year. This is what they will remember thirty years from now when they think back to time with our family. The people who are a part of these traditions are just as important as the tradition itself - our neighbors, friends and family join in the fun each year too. For countless years, we have invited neighbors over to build Graham Cracker Houses. We glue the crackers with edible Royal Icing (recipe below photos). We add an assortment of candy for decoration and voila, a beautiful table decoration and an on-going snack for the passerby is created. As the kids get older their participation and imagination have grown. This year was the best yet, with many doing most of the work on their own, leaving the adults to mingle, eat and drink. Our family typic

A Cover Up

When I was 14, my best friend was Ann Williams, and she and her family lived around the block from my house. We spent a lot of time together, mostly at her house, since both her parents worked. In fact, I never remember meeting her mother. Her father, I remember quite well. He resembled Dick Van Patten from Eight is Enough , a popular TV show from the late 70's and early 80's. Ann told me that their family took a limousine ride in New York City once and as they were getting out, her father was asked for his autograph. He played along. I also remember walking around their house in April and passing the living room, set off to the side, a place I had never noticed. There was a large, tall item standing in the middle of the room with a sheet over it - their Christmas Tree. Being from a family with set traditions concerning the Christmas Tree, I was flabbergasted. Our tree went up the Sunday after Thanksgiving, while watching Abbot and Costello Meet ...some sort of ghastly ghost

Happy New Year!

Best Wishes in the New Year!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all!

Graham Cracker House Building

The Chefs  This is a great activity to do next week when the kids are off from school. Set table ahead of time.   Supplies Approx a 12” x 12” cardboard or baking pan covered tightly in tin foil. This will serve as the platform for the house. If you use a baking pan, make sure it is not one you will need soon. A cardboard foundation for the house such as individual juice boxes (taped together), box from snacks, cut off the bottom of a ½ gallon OJ or milk carton. This will determine the size of your house. I recommend small. One box of honey graham crackers – any brand. Tape the foundation firmly to the cardboard.  Decorations Chewing gum – Big Red Neccos Red Hots Chocolate sprinkles Rainbow sprinkles Coconut flakes for snow Mini marshmallows Tootsie Rolls Green leaf candy Gum drops, assorted colors Red & White Peppermint candies Mini candy canes M&M’ Twizzler

Get on the Ginger Bread Train

Kids made this from a kit last weekend while visiting a doubly great Aunt in South Carolina.

I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas

Logan's class went caroling in the neighborhood this week. They sang the song below at the firehouse and two restaurants. They were a big hit. Here are the words, just in case, you are looking to liven up your holidays with a special song: I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas I want a hippopotamus for Christmas Only a hippopotamus will do Don't want a doll, no dinky Tinker Toy I want a hippopotamus to play with and enjoy I want a hippopotamus for Christmas I don't think Santa Claus will mind, do you? He won't have to use our dirty chimney flue Just bring him through the front door, that's the easy thing to do I can see me now on Christmas morning, creeping down the stairs Oh what joy and what surprise when I open up my eyes To see a hippo hero standing there I want a hippopotamus for Christmas Only a hippopotamus will do No crocodiles, no rhinoceroses I only like hippopotamuses And hippopotamuses like me too Mom says the hippo would eat me

Trimming the Tree Traditions

  For over 13 years, Ryan and I have been buying our Christmas Tree from the same lot near our home. This tradition has a lot of details to it: we get it the Sunday after Thanksgiving Day, we take a photo of us at the lot and we choose a Charlie Brown tree from the sale rack. Sometimes we get short and stout, others times, full on one side and naked on the other. This year we have tall and skinny. It's a 4 week commitment, we can cope. What's your Christmas Tree tradition?

Quietly Thankful

At many Thanksgiving Dinner tables, family members are asked to go around the table expressing their thanks for something special in their life. The usual remarks include God, health, children, spouses, parents and world peace. Even if this tradition does not take place today, it is the time of year that most give pause to the blessings in their life. I am thankful for my wonderful and supportive family, neighbors and friends. My husband could not be more supportive and loving. I have three beautiful boys who care about one another. We are all relatively healthy and happy. But today I write about what I am thankful for, but would never say at a dining room table full of people. Most people choose their cream of the crop thoughts to share among family, friends and relatives.These are not my cleaned up versions, so be prepared. Here are some of the things I am thankful for throughout the year: Turning off the alarm on a day when there is no school. When my friend brings over

Spreading Hope Through You Tube

After watching Modern Family on Wednesday night and they talked about Flash mobs , I had to know more about them. Watch this and feel good about the world around you for at least a few minutes. Happy Holidays!

Special Exposure Wednesday: Guilty Pleasures

Perhaps I have mentioned before that Ben loves Bob the Builder. This photo captures Ben watching his new "Bob" video from Santa on Christmas Day while we opened presents, something he does not particularly enjoy. It was our way to involve Ben in something he likes and be with us at the same time. Rather than feel guilty and sad about Ben not participating in Christmas morning activities in the traditional way, we tried this innovative approach - and it worked well for the whole family.