Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! I love Christmas morning and how magical it is. It was even more magical this year when despite our poor economic conditions there was so much under the tree! I thank all the Santa Clauses who came to our rescue. We loved having Stacey, Tony and my mom here and they brought a whole Christmas with them. I think that they gifts being so excessive at Christmas help to remind me of how amazing the gift of Jesus Christ is to us. I am thankful that because of Christ we can return to live with Heavenly Father again.

Ashling got this coat from Santa Clause. Doesn't she look cute in it.

Every time Annika opened new clothes she wanted to try them on right then and there. I think it makes her a lot of fun to buy things for!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas Program

Ali and Ashling were in their Christmas program at school. It was fun to go and watch it. Ali was a shoveler and sang a song about shoveling snow with her dad. I love the song and will have to get the lyrics to put up if I ever get the chance. It explains living in our mountains perfectly. The poor dad is shoveling with his daughter all evening and she keeps wanting to do something fun in the snow but he has so much snow to shovel he just says no. In the morning they wake up again and the snow is 4 feet deep. I love going to see the kids perform! Ashling's class sang rudolph and jingle bells.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Ward Christmas Party

Our ward Christmas party is quite fun. We eat and then we have a family talent show. Anyone in the family can share a talent. This year Ali played the piano and played silent night with the top and bottom hand. We were really proud of her learning to play it so well and it sounded great! We also enjoyed seeing santa clause at the end of the night!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Ali lately

It is strange to me to have such an old child. She is treading somewhere between a child and a tween where sometimes she wants makeup and jewelry and sometimes she is content to play Barbies. She loves soccer and wants to play it any time. She is learning how to play the game better each year and at times she is quite aggressive. She also likes to play goalie and is excited whenever she manages to stop a ball.

Ali loves to sing and sings all the time. She has had lots of compliments on her singing and we are considering getting voice lessons because she seems to enjoy it so much. Ali also is learning to play the piano and to read some music. I hope we can teach her to play more in the next year. For our Christmas Ward Party she is going to play silent night for the talent show. She has been working hard at that.

Ali has her own pet. I gave her Sierra, our family dog. She had been wanting her own dog and I didn't want a new dog so I gave her our family dog. She moved the kennel down to her room as well as the dog bed. Now Sierra sleeps on her bed on Ali's bed. She loves having the dog to herself. She also takes the dog for short walks in our neighborhood, feeds her and brushes her. I think Sierra is happy with the arrangement too since she seems to love sleeping in Ali's room.

Ali does well academically and talks too much in class just like some other people I know. She is reading Harry Potter as well as many other books right now. She likes to play games and we have been playing Settlers of Cataan with her a lot lately. She is quite good and even creamed Cameron and I once. Last night she almost won but due to inexperience I moved in ahead of her at the last second.

It is fun to have an 81/2 year old and I love Ali!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Ashling started Thanksgiving off right by having a Thanksgiving feast at school. She enjoyed a turkey, mashed potatoes, fruit salad, muffins, sweet potatoes and apple juice. Some of the kids dressed up as indians and some dressed up as pilgrims. They made all their place mats and decorations. It was a great activity for school. She learned all about the traditions of Thanksgiving and came home ready to talk about it all.

We had a good thanksgiving with Cameron's family this year. We had more food than we could possibly eat and the kids enjoyed playing lots and lots of board games. On Friday we went skiing in the morning as a family. Cameron and Annika watched while the girls and I skied. I am amazed by how good they are at skiing and it was really fun to ski with them. We played the game red light, green light where they tried to go as fast as they could and then stop as soon as I said red light. They really loved that game and it helped them work on stopping. Ali also went off some small jumps and caught air twice and fell once.

After skiing we went down the hill to a field and played a big family soccer game. It was a lot of fun and somehow the girls managed to win despite the fact that all the quality players were on the boys team. Thanks boys for letting us win. We then played more games at Chalon's house until it was late and time to go home.

Saturday we cleaned and organized our house and then Sunday we decorated for Christmas. It was a great weekend and the only thing missing was some Black Friday shopping. We will have to go next year!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Annika at 22 months

I haven't written anything about Annika for a long time and she is so funny, cute and mischievous right now that I must write about her. Annika wakes up at the exact same time each morning no matter how much sleep she got the night before. Putting her to bed later doesn't seem to change anything as we found out over Thanksgiving break when she just kept waking up early even though we wanted to sleep in. When she wakes up she immediately yells, "Ashlin Ashlin Ashlin What!" She wants Ashling to wake up and say What to her. Then she might get desperate and yell for Ali or Daddy or sometimes Mommy. (I am very unlikely to be the one that gets her out of bed in the morning so she isn't interested in me.)

Annika is discovering her love of clothes. She wants to pick out what to wear in the morning although most of what she picks out is actually pajamas. Her favorite clothes are a pair of thermals that are 2 sizes too big that Mandie gave us. She loves to wear these clothes and tries to get you to put them on all day. She also loves shoes and practices putting them on and taking them off all day.

Annika loves her pacifier or as she calls it her "pa fa." But due to the concern of 50 million viewers telling me how her teeth are going to be ruined and how awful I am for allowing this pacifier I have taken it away from her at all but bed time and nap time. This is what she has decided to do instead. Obviously she is not slow to think of new ideas to solve problems. Now she is sucking her fingers and I find myself wanting to give her the pacifier again all the time so she won't get in the habit of sucking on fingers. It is much harder to break.
Annika is happy and loves to make people laugh. She is also compassionate and after pulling hair or kicking me she will say, "sorry momma" if I expressed that it hurt me. She loves to give hugs and the older girls have started fake crying just to get Annika to give them a hug. She says hi and bye to everyone and calls people older people grandma or grandpa. I think this is an especially good idea since they melt and she gets the smiles and attention that she wants.
Annika loves to sing and dance. If there is music on she is responding to it. She dances in the shopping cart, dances in the mall, dances in restaurants and of course dances at home. She loves to sing itsy, bitsy spider, old mc donald had a farm, and twinkle, twinkle, little star. Annika really likes it when her daddy sings her this song while he takes her outside to look at the stars.
Annika recently realized that there is a big world outside of the car. She looks out the windows with such interest. Her favorite things to see are the moon, the lights and down the hill. She says, "I see it. Moont. I see it. Light. I see it. Look Momma, Look. I see it" I don't think she knows exactly what she seems when looking down the hill at the distant city and lights but it is beautiful and she notices it. I like how she says things and wish she would stay this age forever.
Among the troubling aspects of Annika's development is that she has learned that coloring is her favorite activity. She grabs a pencil, crayon, or marker and sets to work making my walls look beautiful with her artwork. I have spent a long time scrubing walls and I am nowhere near done cleaning off her artwork. I have taken all the crayons away from everyone and put them up high. Then when Annika wants to color we put her on a stool she can't get down from and then give her the crayons. The problem isn't totally fixed but hopefully in a couple weeks she will understand where she should draw. I hope time out works for her!
We love having Annika in our family and it is amazing to see what a unique personality she can be when we already have two wonderful girls.