Saturday, December 3, 2011

Time Flies - Happy Holidays!


They say that time flies when you are having fun so I guess we must have had a lot of fun this year as it is already the first week of December and I am just getting around to writing our annual holiday letter.  So,  this year has completely flown by for us.

Happy Holidays!

All and all 2011 was a good year for us which was filled with many happy memories and great adventures.  The year did begin with a trip to Philadelphia Children's Hospital (CHOP) for Daniel but what else is new.  Despite crossing our fingers that Daniel's G-Tube spot would close completely on its own and not require any medical intervention it wasn't the case.  So in January we spent a fun-filled day at CHOP and Daniel underwent surgery to close the pinhole opening that remained.  We were very fortunate and had a fabulous surgeon who was great with Daniel and totally got our "craziness."  Well maybe just mine.   In true Daniel's fashion, he totally called out his doctor and asked him what took him so long to see him on surgery day.  And if that was not enough to embarrass us, he told the recovery room nurses that he LOVED soda when they asked him what kind of icy drink he wanted.  How he loves soda is beyond me as he does not drink it in this house.  In the end it was worth the trip as his G-Tube site looks fabulous now.... 

Speaking of medical visits, this year also brought our annual trip to Cincinnati Children's Hospital for Daniel's check-up.  The visit went extremely well and everyone involved in his case was extremely impressed by his progress and development.  So much so that they told us that we did not have to see them for TWO WHOLE YEARS!  Yes, two years!! What are we going to do next year?? Maybe go on a fun vacation or actually write this letter on time??

This year the little man turned FOUR-years-old much to our surprise.  
   
And he totally got how awesome birthdays are.  How does that happen?? Anyway, he celebrated in style with a visit from Nana and a birthday dinner filled with friends and ice cream cake.

The summer, as always, brought exciting adventures and annual traditions.  One being our friend's annual "white trash" party to kick-off the summer.  Our contribution to the party has been securing about 60 pounds of crawfish and cooking them.  As traditions go, each year Daniel gets to rescue one crawfish for our fish tank.  It amazes me that he has no fear in this area and just reaches in and grabs one.  He was pretty happy with his pick this year... 
  

Unfortunately "Mr. Crawfish" made his departure much too soon for us.  Maybe it still had some "BP" in its system.  

The summer also brought a visit from Mike's family from Colorado; a trip to the Jersey Shore, as well as two camping trips for Mike and Daniel to a friend's cabin in upstate New York.    Both trips were great fun and allowed our little boy to be just that - A BOY.....

   

The Fall brought the arrival of school and off to Pre-K we all went in true amazement of how far we have all come.  And yes, that is a black eye for the first day of school.  Yet another proud moment...


No longer are there tears in the classroom doorway and no longer is there a "Bye Mom." Just off and running. Guess it is just a precursor of days to come.  How next year brings a new school and Kindergarten I haven't got a clue.

And believe it or not, Mike and I successfully made it to our 10th wedding anniversary.  Talk about time flying by.  


We were able to get away for a couple of days to celebrate thanks to my sister and the wedding celebration of a very dear friend in Palm Springs, Calif.  Though the trip was a world wind, it was awesome on many fronts.  In true Mike fashion he somehow convinced me to take the Palm Springs Ariel Tram to the top of the mountain. 


 

Small spaces, extreme heights - I think Mike is trying to tell me something after all these years.  All and all it was an amazing trip up and a fabulous way to celebrate our milestone.

Both of our families are doing well.  Somehow our niece and our nephew are in high school while the other two are in their last year of elementary school and one is in middle school.  Again, time flies!

All and all, we are doing well too.  Mike continues to work for Cablevision and is rounding out his 17th year and I am still doing some freelance work and am in the process of finding full-time work.  Daniel, as you can tell, continues to be a happy and funny little boy and continues to amaze (and drive us crazy) each day.


We are keeping our fingers crossed that we are raising a nice human being.  I guess time will tell on that front too.    As always, we hope your past year was filled with many adventures and happy memories as our was. We wish you peace, love and joy this holiday season and may 2012 bring you even more! 

Happy Holidays!!!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Daniel and Santa Through the Years

We are lucky enough that we have an amazing Santa to visit each year at a local nursery right down the street from us.  Yesterday we took our annual visit to see the big guy and "hear" what Daniel wanted for Christmas.  Upon hopping up on Santa's lap, I thought it might be cute to see Daniel through the year.  And here you have it......
2009

2010 

2011

It is amazing how much his little face has changed in just three short years. At least he is keeping that hair!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Return of the Popcorn Turkey

This year we once again made popcorn turkeys for D's schoolmates. This year we had to double our order and both sets of teachers looked at me a little funny when I asked if it would be ok if D brought them in on the last day of school before Thanksgiving.



By all accounts they were hits and D was quite proud of his turkey making ability. 


And this year, he even carried them in to school all by himself. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Best Thing About Pre-School....

Until this year I never realized the best thing about Pre-School. Granted for our little man, it is about all the exciting learning opportunities that await him daily (he probably doesn't think so). For his parents, it is all about the adorable things he makes and walks out of his classroom with (and the couple of hours of peace). 

Case in point.....


Happy Thanksgiving
from our little Pilgrim and his Indians (a little early).  May your horn of plenty be filled with happiness and peace this year!! 

Monday, November 7, 2011

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Halloween That Never Ended!!

This year Halloween never seemed to end for us.  Probably because of the crazy snow we got last Saturday or due to the fact that school's were closed for three days, or maybe because most of our towns cancelled Halloween activities due to the crazy amount of storm damage that littered the streets.  I think it was because "some" people just wouldn't let it go.    Hence this late wrap-up of our Halloween activities.

I should have known it was going to be a LONG week when D's pre-school finally went on their Fall hayride for pumpkins on the Friday BEFORE Halloween.  Yes, I had to hunt for our mittens and hats as it was a "warm" 39 degrees that morning!! D did find the perfect pumpkin for him and as you can see, he is quite proud of his find.....



And then came the snow.  Yes, snow in October and yes it was very wet and heavy! 


Luckily we did not lose power at all - just our cable for a few days.  However, the side street behind us lost their power for almost a week.  Given the massive power loses schools were closed and Halloween was crazy.  After an hour of trying to figuring out what he wanted to be, D decided that his skeleton pjs were his best option and decided that was what he wanted to be.  Mind you, we purchased a knight costume weeks before but he was having no part of it on Halloween.  We did go "Trunk or Treating" at our friend's elementary school which provided enough treats to last a lifetime.

School finally opened on Thursday and D continued on his skeleton theme.  Knowing that we had his pre-school Halloween party the next day, and the fact that the skeleton pjs were so incredibly dirty that they could walk off D's body, we headed off to the store to take advantage of the after Halloween sales and got a new knight costume for school on Friday. Thankfully D was much more agreeable and willing this time around. 

Our little brave knight.....


We once again participated in D's pre-school's "Trunk or Treat" event and of course decorated our trunk with gusto....


However this year we added some fun extras for the kids and had a fog machine which blew fog bubbles.  Totally fun and quite cool, I might add.....


Before the kids visited the trunks they participated in a parade and sang a couple a songs for the parents.  And like last year, D was surrounded by girls....


And with that event we finally kissed Halloween good-bye for the year! Thank God!!



Now we are onto Turkey Day and the arrival of the Big Guy in December!

Shaving Cream + Little Boy =

An experiment gone bad...




And in the end, it all went down the drain so who cares? Especially when you get a smile like this....




Monday, October 17, 2011

"Falling" Behind

Yes, I have been "falling" behind with this blog. I do apologize but we have been keeping busy with school, swimming lessons, and Fall-fun. We have taken some "wild hare" road trips to celebrate the fall to Dorney Park's "Boo Fest" where there was lots of rides and a visit to the "Clown Factory", hence the wig.     




And of course there was a visit with Snoopy the pirate....


And of course there have been races in hay mazes too....

 


As well as "King of the Hay Maze" adventures......

Fall has been fun for us and with the leaves turning colorful, the next few weeks will certainly be filled with adventures.  

And believe it or not, this week we are celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary. How we got to 10 years, I haven't got a clue. Some days it feels like it is just a few years and others, well, I guess that is for all married couples.  But in the end, we have made it and have enjoyed the adventures to this mark too.  Some of these adventures have been crazy, but, all of them have given us wonderful memories that we will certainly cherish now and in the years to come.  

Hope your Fall has been fanastic thus far!   

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Look What I Grew!!!

A Great Pumpkin!! 


Yes, we did actually grew these two pumpkins this summer from pumpkin seeds.   This one is a decent weight and almost perfectly around!



Now, why one is green and the other one orange, I haven't a clue.  But I am pretty impressed with us that we actually got two!!


Happy Harvest!!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Off to High School!

Well not really.  Daniel is smart but he is no Doggie Howser, MD.

Last year a mom in Daniel's nursery school class mentioned to me that our local high school has a pre-school program which is run by a teacher and high school students who are interested in or will be majoring in early childhood education in college.  The program, which is two hours in the morning, three days a week, provides almost a one-on-one ratio to the pre-schooler and the "teacher."  After searching and finding the program on the web, I looked in to it, toured it, and decided to enrolled Daniel.  The funny thing is that the teacher who runs the program could be my college roommate.  I swear I am going to call the teacher "Jennifer" on day.  It is totally strange but makes me smile every time I think about it.

Anyway, yesterday was the first day of this program and Daniel was so excited to go.  Granted he has been excited to go to school since we started last week but this was different.  I am not sure if it is because I told him that he would be one of 12 boys in class (he has been totally outnumbered in his other school) or if it was because he would be meeting kids in our town or simply just excited for school.  I will take any of those reasons!  And if I said he took to it like a champ, it would be an understatement. 

In the driveway and off we go....


Heading in....(and boy did this give me a flash forward moment)


Finding his cubby by name all by himself.....


And that's all I got because he was off running and playing.  No goodbyes - just a "see ya later" which I might add he blew by me and into Mike's arms at pick-up.  Yes, we are off to High School already! 

Monday, September 12, 2011

Off to Pre-K Today

Today was D's first day of Pre-K and boy was he excited to go.  He was dressed and ready to go at 9:00 a.m. even through school did not begin until 12:15 p.m.  As you can see we took the traditional "first day" pictures outside our house.  The shiner makes these photos even more special.



As I said, he was very excited to head off to school.  Can't you just feel the excitement???

In the car, heading off to school.....

In his new classroom, upstairs with all the "big kids"........
Last year we were in the basement as the school keeps the kids separated by age groups.  And what makes it even nicer is that D has three friends from last year in his class this year.  I do have to say it was very sweet to see them all together again.

Of course, the traditional picture by the school's sign.......


And of course there was ice cream after school.....

So here's to a new school year.  Hope the excitement stays.  (And I can't believe this time next year it will be off to Kindergarten for him. Where does time go?)