Friday, November 30, 2012

thanksgiving

Our Thanksgiving this year was what I like to call "nontraditional"  There wasn't much that resembled anything I grew up with, or anything that we have done in the last several years.  This is our 5th one away from family.  The last four, were during med school, and even though were weren't with our family, we were surrounded by amazing friends who were also away from family.  This year we are definitely surrounded by wonderful people, but life is just a little different.  The most traditional part was preschool.  We read books about the first Thanksgiving, made Pilgrim and Indian hats, and had a mini dinner.

Chad had to work on Thanksgiving.  He had thought that we would just celebrate on a different day, but instead decided to just celebrate the most important part: the things we are the most grateful for.  We drove into Dayton and met Chad at the hospital cafeteria.  We had Thanksgiving dinner resident style, but still as a family.  Aimee, Porter and Pratt had chicken fingers, I had ham, and Chad went with turkey.  When the kids and I got home we made a few pies.  Apple for Chad, and banana cream for me.  Chad actually got off early and was home by 5:30 that night.  It was awesome just to have a little extra time together.
 We did spend the entire month making a gratitude tree.  The kids and I gathered some dead sticks and put them in a vase. I cut out tons of the little circles or "gratitude leaves."  Each morning the kids and I would write down something that we are thankful for after scriptures, and Chad would usually leave one on the kitchen counter each morning to be hung up with ours.
Chad asked me to please save the leaves.  I told him I would save them long enough to record what things made it on the tree.  Here are most of our "gratitudes."
Daddy:  warm clothes, singing, Joseph Smith, snow, Sundays, days off, the sacrament, faith, prophets and apostles.
Mommy: family scriptures, happy home, the temple, our bodies, America, our beautiful world, health, LDS church membership, repentance, my sweetheart, Jesus Christ, the atonement, covenants, Huban, the Holy Ghost, a living prophet, missionaries, the priesthood.
Aimee:  dancing, fruit & home, catching frogs as a family, when dad gets to stay home and play, our berry tree, animals, Thanksgiving lunch with dad, Grandpa's and Grandma's, my sweet brother Porter, our happy home, Daddy's job, Barbie movies, Jesus us our brother, Heavenly Father & Jesus, people at the hospital, Mommy and Daddy, forever families, dolls.
Porter:  milk, lights, the tree of life, cereal, a nice warm home, waffles, doors, birds that fly, trees, Aimee is my best friend, family, popcorn, animals, Dad's hospital, the gratitude tree, Daddy, waffles iron, a new freezer, Mommy, waffles, snow.
Pratt:  he scribbles on a few leaves when I wasn't looking, so I hung them up
We are so blessed!
 

days off

Chad's days off are always a big deal to the kids, and we try make it a day to always look forward to.  We are, however, cheap, and proud of it!  We find fun for free.  This day off we redeemed several Chuck E. Cheese coupons off the back of our string cheese package for free tokens.  We used to to this all the time in Omaha.  We were pleasantly surprised to find that our new home location was much nicer, and far cleaner!  We can get 36 tokens per trip (or three wrapper coupons).  That is plenty to keep everyone happy until we are ready to ditch the place.  One of our favorite things to do there is to get a family picture from the photo drawing game.  I don't have that picture in my camera, but here a few from the day anyway.
 
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 A friend of mine invited us to go to the free day at the children's museum.  It just happened to be on Chad's day off so we all piled into the van and enjoyed the afternoon exploring Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.  It was much bigger than the one in Omaha.  It's biggest downfall was that it has several levels connected by slides and climbing nets.  Chad just about had a heart attack when Porter zipped down the slide before we could see where he went.  Pratt peed through his diaper about the same time we found him so "running off" was punished with it being time to leave.  I hear there are two other free days a year, so we will be going back!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

aimee's art

I am not sure why Lehi's vision was the subject Aimee chose to draw for Aunt Torj's birthday, but I had to take a quick picture before I put it in the mail.  I also took the liberty of labeling the picture to make interpretation slightly easier.  Although, I think the most important things can be picked out just by knowing the subject.  Taessia's favorite was the "bad girl."  I am pretty sure she represents all the "bad" people that went to the great and spacious building.  My little artist would draw all day if I would let her!

bedtime & dancing

Bedtime is the most eventful and funnest time of the day.  Mostly because this is when daddy is home.  The kiddos get plenty of mom everyday.  Sure, if someone needs help or gets hurt, they want mom.  But, their daddy time is such a precious commodity that they live for when he walks through the door.  Aimee and Porters usually response to the garage door opening at night is to make the tough decision whether to hide, surprise or trick daddy.  And every night, no matter what they pick, Chad plays along.  Pratt on the other hand, slides down the stairs so that the moment the door opens he can jump into his daddy's arms.  I have had to start leaving a light on down stairs so that Pratt, in his excitement, doesn't plow into corners or chairs on his way.  I usually just sit back and watch the magic, and wait patiently for my kiss.  I think Chad is just about the luckiest man alive to have such a fan club, and that we are luckiest family alive to have such an amazing husband and dad.  Chad and I used to be such sticklers about 7:00 bedtime.  Now, I usually wait until the babies temperaments can't wait any long, dad sends a text to tell me it will be too late for them to wait, or that beautiful moment when pure joy erupts in the house at his arrival.  Sometimes it only lasts five minutes, but those minutes are the best of the day
I have one last video of our family bonding time at night.  Life is pretty good in the Williams home!
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pillow bums/bombs

I recently posted some of the games that make up most evenings that Chad makes it home in time for bedtime.  Somehow I failed to post my personal favorite.  Chad and I call it 'pillow bombs'.  Aimee and her funny little accent that I have yet to find the origin, calls it 'pillow bums'.  Porter is the best part of this game.  He is my cautious, easy to tear up, doesn't handle discomfort of any kind well kid.  The exception for him is playing pillow bombs. Somehow he manages to laugh and keep playing even when he takes a solid hit.  The truth is that I often purposely try to take him out because it is so darn funny.  I think Chad takes him out so he can laugh at me, laughing at Porter.  Over time we have had to add a few rules.  For example:  if you hit the blinds with the bombs, the game is over.  This rule, and all the others are mostly for Chad. 
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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

abc's

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Honestly, I am not sure where Pratt learned to sing the alphabet (yes, that is what he is singing), but it is so cute!  My best guess is that he picked it up from Aimee and Porter, but I rarely hear them singing it.  It is a mystery.  One of the best parts about it is that he starts with H-I-J-K.  I initially recorded it for Chad since he often misses these kinds of things, but had to log this one in on the blog.  The day I recorded this he sang it all day!

I also just thought I would include this little picture of Pratt in time-out.  He isn't very good at keeping his nose on the wall, so he caught me taking the picture.  I would say the smile on his face sums up how effective it turned out.

dinosaurs

 
Halloween for us started back in February.  I was paroosing Pinterest and came across these adorable dinosaur tails.  I asked Aimee and Porter if they would like one, and even in the dead of winter they said, "yes! We want to be dinosaurs for Halloween!"  That solved my costume dilemma!  As dumb as it might sound, that can be a little stressful for me.  One of the great things this costume would do for us was supply a post-Halloween dress up that is acceptable for boys and girls.  Aimee loves to dress up, and Porter loves to do everything Aimee does.  Since Chad and I are the kind of parents that don't want our sons dressing up like girls, this was a great solution.  Also, I knew that it would be cool weather and we could dress warm without ruining the costume (which I hated as a kid).   These hoodies and pants could also be used all season.  That was looking good for my budget.  Naturally, I waited until the end of September to start the project.  Our first costume event was the 20th, so I had about three weeks to buy all the material, all of the sweats, sew about a million spikes for the tails and hoodies and stuff and close the tails.  This was the reason the blog didn't happen much until the sewing was finished.



 
To make it all just a little more exciting, we decided to also play make-up.  I watched a little face painting tutorial on YouTube.  They were all full face tutorial, but I just didn't see that happening.  We did a little improv and it turned out fun.  I just used regular acrylic paint so I wouldn't have to scrub everyones faces when we were done, and it would be a fun experience (although I used just a little on Pratt and regretted it).  I am thinking about supplementing my families income by hiring out to do face painting at parties... 
 This was the big night!  Chad, Aimee and I rubbed holes in the bottom of our tails from them dragging on the cement, but it was so worth it!  I never thought we would have as much fun trick-or-treating as we did in Omaha, but we did!  Such a fun time together!
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