Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas in MA

We drove to Westford on Christmas morning.  The kids opened presents and ran off to play.  In the afternoon, Brian, Becky & Granny came over from Brookline.  We walked around Grassy Pond in the unseasonably warm weather, and then GG, Auntie Cindy & Grant joined us for an amazing manicotti and ham dinner.

Uncle Nick as the troll

 my two mom's :)

Monday, December 29, 2014

Early Christmas in Glenside

The weekend before Christmas, we met up with the whole Groves clan in Glenside for a great couple days.  It was so good to be all together, for the first time in a year (and the first time ever including Taylor!).  The Welches graciously opened up their second floor to us, so we had a nice base of operation just a few minutes away from Heather Lane.  We also saw a few friends -- I was able to steal away for breakfast at Elcy's with Katie, and Andy drove two+ hours from Annapolis to visit for an evening.  (So glad to have the Hanauers on the East Coast!:)

 what, your mother in law didn't request an elvis costume for Christmas??

One of my favorite traditions - Christmas Eve dinner in the living room, with the Greens (and this year, the Bohannons)
 I walked into the room as Adara was nodding off at the table, and stepped over just in time to catch her as she fell asleep and out of her seat.

 Alasdair walked in the front door to Adara holding a toy sword and announcing, I'm brave and I can kill monsters.  Daddy's a monster and I'm going to kill him.

 Everyone at New Life. 


Aunt Taylor :)

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas around here

Around our two short trips (more on those later), we've had some lovely Christmas time around here.  The girls and I made kissy cookies (Emily wrote on a form for school that one of her Christmas traditions was helping mom make kissy cookies, so I figured we'd better!), most nights after dinner we drank egg nog and listened to Alasdair read an advent reading from the star and light themed verse list he put together, the girls loved the computer advent game Granny sent, and Alasdair and I have tried to spend as much time as possible sitting by the Christmas tree and reading in the evenings.  

The day after we came home from Philly, we and the Bishops had a delicious brunch at the Crane's.  Their beautifully decorated house is just perfect for Christmas. :)  I took each of the girls to the Dollar Store to pick out a gift for her sister and a cousin, and we wrapped presents.  On the 24th we did our family Christmas, opened gifts and made pancakes, spent some time doing new crafts, and went to the CRC Christmas Eve service.  

Since then, we've been enjoying some extra family time.  It's so nice to have the space to do things like crafts with the girls, a hike in the snow, and our first board game as a family (Sneaky Snacky Squirrel:).  Looking forward to a few more days like that before we are back to reality!

 their gifts to each other

 last year and this year!

and the stockings were hung on the bookshelf with care :)

 dancing in the kitchen

Also, today I took Emily to Storrs Hill to check it out, make sure all our equipment worked, and to get our ski legs under us.   It's such a sweet little hill.  There isn't actually a true beginner slope, but this brave girl wanted to try the poma (and try it again after she fell, and then try it again after she made it to the top and got yanked into the air because I hadn't explained to her how to get off!).  She did a lot of "butt skiing" as she called it, but she had a great attitude and was thrilled to be out.

8 Months

This sweet boy turned 8 months old today.  He is sleeping better than he was a month ago, although various colds and travel have set him back a bit.  One of his teeth is finally cutting through, after months of work.  He's starting to think about crawling (lunging from sitting to leaning on his arms) and hates getting stuck on his belly.  He's generally still happy to be passed around, but definitely prefers Mommy.

 playing with office supplies while mommy works

 playing piano with papa

 loving his big sister

 fascinated by the fish at the montshire museum

 waiting for his cousin 

photo shoot :)

gazing at daddy

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Clara's Dream

Aunt Becky came to visit last weekend, and we took the girls to Clara's Dream - an abridged performance of the Nutcracker - at the Lebanon Opera House.  Despite the icky slushy weather, it was fun to dress up and go out together.  I wasn't sure how Adara would do sitting through it, but she ended up falling asleep on my lap for about half the show.  Emily was generally captivated. When I asked them afterward what they thought of the ballet, Emily said "Great!" and Adara said, "It was kind of strange.  And crooked."  

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Nathan's Garden

I can't remember if I've written about this, but one of my favorite parts of this fall was after-preschool picnics with Adara at "Nafan's Garden."  This is a space created by a family that lost a child many years ago.  Tucked in a Hanover neighborhood, you walk down a path into a large clearing in the woods, with a small stream, open space, some wooden tables and chairs, a swing and sandbox, and up on top a hill on the other side, a gazebo.  We never stayed long, but we made a "no phones in Nathan's Garden" rule (except for the occasional picture:) it was a nice time to sit and play together.   We will miss it for the winter!