One of the Christmas traditions that I started with Faith last year was baking and decorating gingerbread cookies. And since Faith remembers everything, she has been asking for a few weeks about when we would make gingerbread cookies again! So, today was the day! She loved helping me with the cookies, and showed great improvement in the decorating realm (although that really isn't say too much). Her favorite part remains eating her creations!
Getting cookies out of the oven!
We occupied Shane with his lunch - some yogurt, which he fed to himself. It was pretty messy, but he sure had a great time!
"I think it's time to eat one!"
working wonders with frosting
So, any 'real' cookie decorators out there don't have to worry about us putting them out of business! But we had fun, which was our goal!
All Aboard! Since the kids love to see trains, we thought it would be fun to take them on a Christmas train featuring Santa, a chance to cut down a Christmas tree, and scenic views! They had a great time, other than the visit from Santa as both kids were frightened by him!
Faith and Shane enjoyed the ride...Shane was pointing out some horses that he spotted!
The excitement as Santa arrives...
Still pretty curious...
but did not want a cute Kodak moment with Santa!
A view from the train
Once we arrived at the Christmas tree farm, Faith needed to ride a pony!
In front of a Christmas tree
A family shot in front of the train
We decided to sit in the open car for the ride back, which the kids seemed to enjoy even more since it was such a beautiful day!
This morning at school Faith was able to participate in the Christmas Chapel. Faith, along with her classmates, sang two songs in the program. I could hear her sing loud and clear, even though I was sitting in the back (Shane was with me!). She did very well, and was so excited that Shane and I could be there to watch. Here are a few pictures...
This was at the end
During the performance
I'm sure this is the first of many school performances that we will have the opportunity to enjoy!
This afternoon was the annual Culver City Fire Department Christmas Party. It is an event that our family (particularly Faith) has come to look forward to every Christmas! And once again, the kids had a blast! We had an afternoon of coloring, cookie decoration, bouncing in the bounce house, and of course a visit from Santa who arrived on the fire engine! Here are some pictures from our afternoon...
Faith spent most of her time at the art table
Shane wanted to bounce the entire time!
Steve had fun helping Shane bounce
Faith receiving her gift from Santa. She also was given a candy cane, and when she did she said, "Look! It's a J!"
Shane actually sat on Santa's lap to receive his gift...maybe that will help Faith do so next year!
Getting her face painted
As you can see, a fun time was had by all! The kids were talking about their favorite things about the party the entire way home! Well, faith was talking, and Shane just threw in a few "Santa" mentions here and there!
This past Thursday we went to Knott's Berry Farm! It was the first time the kids had been there, and they both loved it. Knott's has a cute kids area, which was where we spent a significant amount of time. We also could all go on some rides, and that was the most fun! Riding on the Log Ride was a highlight for us all. Faith claims that it was her favorite ride! And poor Shane probably got the most wet! Another highlight was riding on a stage coach that was pulled by horses. Animal loving Shane loved to see the horses up close! Here are some pictures from our very fun day...
Faith on a race car
Shane loved the Merry-go-Round! Steve had Shane ride on a pig as Shane is even more into pigs than horses right now!
Faith was excited because she could ride on this ride all by herself!
I attempted the impossible today...well, better stated, what I attempted to do today turned out to be impossible! I tried to take a picture of the two kids together for our Christmas card. This is a process that began a month or so ago when I bought them cute, coordinating outfits (that was the easy part!!). Then today, I dressed them in the outfits (getting a bit more difficult). And finally, I set out to get THE picture! The one where both kids in their coordinating outfits are not only next to each other, but also looking at the camera, smiling and looking absolutely adorable. Like I said, mission impossible with a 3 1/2 year old and a 16 month old! So here are some shots that are not "card worthy". So view at your enjoyment, knowing that these aren't actually the worst shots! Those were deleted as soon as they were put on the computer!
They really are enjoying this whole process!
My battle most often was getting them to stay next to each other so I could snap a shot!
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! There is so much to be thankful for! Faith was very thankful that Pumpkin Pie was on the menu for Thanksgiving dinner! While she has quite a sweet tooth (I have no idea where she could have received that from!!?), pumpkin pie has emerged as a favorite dessert! So, we needed to get a picture of Faith, Aunt Renee, and the delicious pumpkin pie that was consumed on Thanksgiving day!
And for the first time ever, I ventured out on Black Friday to do a bit of shopping! I didn't get up early (well, earlier than normal I should say!), wait in any lines, and I wasn't planning on shopping, but it turned out that Target had a certain item on sale that Faith had on her Christmas list! So, I went out, at 8:30am, battled the crowds at Target, and was successful in purchasing the big, exciting, toy for Faith!
One of the joys I have experienced lately is seeing Faith and Shane interact and watch how much they love each other! I must admit that I never imagined the two kids would have so much fun together so soon! And the way that they have to do everything the other one is doing, well maybe that isn't always so cute (it can lead to toy stealing, which inevitably leads to tears!!), let's just say it keeps life interesting! But watching Shane want to read books as Faith does, it brings a smile to a mom's face! Here are a few pics of the great love they share!
Pretending to have a tea party
Active Shane doesn't sit still for long!
Teacher Faith makes sure he does what she wants!
I'll be sure to remind them of this love and these pictures when they get older!
A couple of weeks ago we were able to have Faith and Shane's room repainted. After the wainscoting was put up, everything needed to be repainted. And we of course wanted it painted before we put up the special decor we had to make their surfer room complete. Now that it's finished, here are a few pics of the completed (well, until Shane is ready for his "big boy" bed) project!
Bed with the surf boards
With all the painting in the house the past few weeks, the kids wanted to do some of their own! Since I'm not into having them actually paint, we came up with a solution - paint brushes and water outside!! They love it!
Happy November! It is hard to believe that we are already in the month of November and are looking towards Thanksgiving and Christmas and have Halloween in the rear view mirror! Time sure does fly by! The kids had fun dressing up for Halloween, and of course, Trick-or-Treating! Unfortunately, Steve had to work, but we made the best of it by going to a Halloween party at one of our friend's house. Here are some pictures of the little ones in their costumes...as you can see, we had a family theme this year!
I tried desperately to get a really cute, both kids looking at the camera and smiling shot, but this was the best I could come up with!