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Sunday, December 29, 2013

Gone to the dogs...

Hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas.  This year it was just our family so we have been enjoying a quiet vacation of lots of family time.  Last Sunday we made our gingerbread houses.  We have learned some lessons over the years.  We separate our candy out for each person so everyone has the exact same amount and we each make a tiny house instead of one big one that we work on together.  Makes for a much happier experience.

Sunday night Allison's door was unlatched and while we were downstairs reading, Maddie got in, tore apart the guinea pig's cage off of the bookcase and was found mouthing it.  After a night of guinea pig convulsions with Allison sobbing in our bed, Midnight died.  Jeremy and Allison dug a grave out in our pet cemetery and Allison made a little marker for her.  Then Tuesday Maddie pushed out past Robyn at the door and was off with us close on her heels.  Only problem was that she can jump fences.  So 30 minutes into the chase we lost her into someone's yard as she started fence hopping.  So Jeremy came home from work and for almost two hours we were searching till the miracle of prayer and facebook let us know she had been terrorizing a neighborhood's chickens and even killing some.  So we got Maddie back and I was blown away by the graciousness of a lady who said Merry Christmas to us, and told us not to worry a bit about the havoc Maddie did in her yard.  I am sure cleaning up dead chickens was not on her Christmas Eve agenda.  Maddie was on the naughty list in our house so its a good thing she is pretty sweet most of the time.  (Did I mention she has thrown up every single day in our house so far?!)

After some chocolate to re-coup we went off sledding.  Kids had an agenda worked out for Christmas Eve.  Sledding (since we had already done ice-skating with cousins), hot-tub, nachos, watch Elf and eat oreo truffles.  Great evening.  Taylor loved the hot tub and giggled when we put him next to the fire.  Our neighbor sweetly brought us some treats just as we had stripped Taylor down for his shower, everyone was dripping in swim suits and Maddie chose to throw up all over the kitchen -- I am sure she thinks we are all slightly insane.

Our kids have been brainwashed into sleeping in on Christmas Day and then waiting on the stairs while we get Taylor all ready for the day.  We had a great day of eating yummy food, opening presents and just hanging out and playing.  Jeremy surprised all the kids with ipods so we have been learning new technology rules, self control and restraint.  Mom is definitely the technology scrooge of the family and I have been told many times that I just don't understand the need.  And I got to visit via phone with all my family and wish that they were closer.

Our bookworm family with their books just from this Christmas:

Allison got tickets for us all to go see Pentatonix her favorite music group in concert. (Monday night was spent watching the current finale of the Sing-off with kids cheering the winner).
Robyn trying on her Christmas outfit:
Spencer has been busy practicing on his new longboard:

Allison gave Spencer a mustache to next Movember:
Allison thought Spencer's snow boots were hilariously huge:

My mom made Robyn and her new doll matching PJs, they have been inseperable ever since.

For dinner each kid made a choice.  So Allison made us Shirley Temples to drink because she had always wanted to taste one.  Robyn made Chocolate mouse cheesecake.  Spencer and Jeremy pulled for cheesy mashed potatoes and ham.  While Taylor made sure there were sweet potatoes which only he and I eat :)  Diets start next week.

This week we have done a lot of vegging.  We have watched movies every night.  One night Allison babysat so Spencer, Jeremy and I could go see Ender's Game.  Spencer read the whole series last year and has been anxiously waiting for the movie to hit our dollar theater.  Kids have slept in and stayed up late.  We had a few friends over for a game night and ended up mostly just visiting - my favorite part.  It has been good to just enjoy doing nothing!  I have been using our new blender to explore the world of green smoothies while kids look on in horror.  One unfortunate incident with a lid coming off during the cycle taught us how to turn the cycle off, and to put the lid on all the way - as everyone was covered in pureed spinach juice.  No one but Taylor and I would eat the spinach drizzled pancakes that were cooking next to the blender.  Probably because Taylor is blind!

Allison got a new retainer this week and has been unhappily wearing it full time again.

Robyn got to bring home her binder of her best work to share with me over the break.  My favorites:

"I thought I would hate my piano teacher.  But I liked her.  Don't judge a book by its cover"
"Someday I will be a painter and sell them.  Someday I will help animals like zebras and old dogs and old cat and old horses.  But now I have to help my sister and brother with their pets."

We planted our carniverous plants that my brother's family gave us.  Kids have high expectations of what will be growing:

From cooking Christmas cookies last week with our friends:

This was taken right before Spencer walked off in a huff because I was trying to teach him how to roll on a mat without the mat flying off the counter.