Tuesday, November 27, 2007

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas!

After a fantastic Thanksgiving with the Woolstons and Hulmes (huge!), we officially began the Baynes Family Christmas season by busting out and decking the ol' tree. This is the first year Abigail was actually able to help and we had a great time. We started a few new traditions this year. The first one was collecting and hanging ornaments with our names on them... I know it's a bit "Days of Our Lives" and I admit I got the idea from there... but it was still fun! Also, we made a paper chain advent with something Christmasy to do everyday written on each link (thanks, Jenny). Finally, my favourite, Abby and I wrapped 25 books... most of them Christmas or Winter themed and numbered them 1-25 and we'll have fun opening one and reading it everyday of December until Christmas Day (that is until I can find a Boxing Day book, I guess). I cannot wait for all of our family to get here... I'm definitely the most impatient in the family.Abby was invited to a birthday party this Saturday and was DYING to wrap the gift. Well, I told her she would have to wait because we didn't have any birthday wrapping paper. Well, this conversation has been going on a couple of days now. So, this morning, she said, "Mummy, I want to wrap the present now!" and without looking, I just repeated the thing about not having the right kind of wrapping paper to which she replied, "I made some, look!" Sure enough, she had drawn birthday cakes all over a piece of printer paper. I had her do another piece so it would fit and we wrapped it up and tied it with a pretty pink bow. She was so proud (and so was her father and mother).Oh, and by the way... she's still sleeping in a box.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Thinking Inside the Box

My wonderful, amazing friend since 8th grade, Dawn, sent Abby and I two huge surprise boxes full of girl clothes and kitchen surprises last week. Paul was really excited because I had just told him how much Abby needed pajamas and cute dresses for church (yeah, I know I need to review the definition of the word need). Well, it was like Christmas had come early and it totally rendered my shopping trip moot. Here were the problems that followed:

1. I had to completely go through all Abby's old clothed to make room for the new so that involved a lot of organizing and packing up and it took me three days to do it. But that was a small price to pay for my friend's generosity and it needed to be done anyway.

2. Abby has moved out of her room and into one of the boxes. She made her friends play in it with her. She wrote her name all over it, she put blankets and her stuffed animals in it and played all day in it... for going on 3 days now. Finally, last night she insisted she sleep in it... and she actually did. Paul and I moved her to her own bed later as she looked so contorted and uncomfortable. I wish I could just fall asleep anywhere.
I think I know what Abby's favourite Christmas prezzie will be... boxes and boxes and boxes...

On a different note, some friends and I made up a new holiday called "Friendsgiving". It is basically the opportunity to eat good food with our friends before the family get-togethers on the actual Thanksgiving Day. It was sooooooo good and I am REALLY full and won't have enough room to eat anything on Thanksgiving... well, that's a lie, but it was great tonight and I hope it becomes a tradition. Abby said her favourite part was "laughing and jumping on the bed with my friends." Uh, yeah, well, we did just kind of leave the kids to themselves until one or more of them started crying... which was fairly often. Sorry about the bed jumping thing, Heather.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Soup, Salad and Breadsticks

Today, my dear friend Cheri took me to the Olive Garden for lunch (do you think I could extend my birthday any longer?) When I got home I was so stuffed (mmmmmm....) but desperate to try to recreate the Zuppa Toscano! I mean, I have tried many times in the past but I just cannot get the broth quite right! Luckily, for only $5.95 (+tax and tip), I can have it whenever I get the craving. I also noticed that if you go on the Olive Garden's website, they have recipes for some of their food. I think I just may have found my culinary inspiration for the week...

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Am I Bothered?

Saturday, Paul had some friends over for pizza and games. We started watching some funny Catherine Tate (British comedian) videos on YouTube. Well, one of the characters she does is a chav girl named Lauren Cooper (look it up... it's funny) who's catchphrase is, "Am I bothered?" Well, that was fun and we all had a good laugh until Abby started acting up and I reprimanded her so do you know what that little stinker did? That's right, she said, "Am I bothered?" sounding like a right chav! Yeah, we're great parents. The thing is, I couldn't even follow through with the reprimand because we were all laughing so hard. That's a good lesson to learn - "If you make them laugh, you won't get in trouble." That's all we need!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Halloween with the FRIENDLY Ghost

Abby decided early this month that she would be a friendly ghost for Halloween... and then she learned about Casper and she knew she had to be him and as Abby often does, she became obsessed (a couple of weeks ago, it was pigs)! At this same time, she also became obsessed with writing words- not just letters- so as a result, I found papers all over the house COVERED with drawings of nice ghosts, practiced letters and even words all over them. She can write Abby, Paul, pig and dog easily now and she is working on cat, I [heart] you and, of course, ghost.For Halloween, she went with her preschool class to the hospital to take a tour (Teacher Hannah's sister, Sarah, is a baby nurse). They came dressed-up and on the way there (we walked as the hospital is only 2 blocks away) the postman stopped us and gave her candy, and random people on the street were slowing down to tell her how scary she looked and she would say, "No! I'm a FRIENDLY ghost!" At the hospital, they got to see the babies, use instruments to check ears, eyes and heart, and afterwards, they ate doughnuts. At one point, I heard Abby and her friend Savannah arguing:

Abby: I am Casper!
Savvy: No, you're Abby!
Abby: No I'm not, I'm a FRIENDLY ghost!
Savvy: But you're Abby!
Abby: I'm Casper!
It was hilarious!

When we got home, I let her watch Scooby-Doo on the Cartoon Network and all of a sudden, I heard screams coming from that room. I ran in there expecting a huge drama and instead, I found Abby jumping up and down on the couch with the biggest smile screaming, "This is what I wanted to watch today! Look Mummy! The FRIENDLY ghost! It's really him! It's Casper!" And it was. It was a new Casper movie called, "Scare School" so we watched it together and she had a smile on her face nearly the entire time.

That night, we went to my friend Heather's house for Hawaiian Haystacks, trick-or-treating and Jenny's delicious homemade doughnuts (who says there's a limit on how many doughnuts one can eat in a day? Especially on Halloween?!? Plus, everyone knows that if something is homemade, it's really good for you anyway!)
The kids all looked so cute! James was a pirate, Daphne was a ballerina, Savannah was a princess, Ethan was a frog prince and then there was Abigail. Ethan loves Abby and is always trying to do the things she does... I feel sorry for his mom, yet she is still my friend... that's loyalty! This was the first year Abby actually got it! The three older kids just ran from house to house saying, "Trick-or-Treat! Happy Halloween!" - sometimes before the door even opened! That night, when we got home, she only threw a little fit when I wouldn't let her eat all the candy at once; she only kicked and screamed a little while when I told her she had to brush her teeth extra before she went to bed; and she only cried a little while when it was finally time to go to sleep (although I did let her sleep in her "Casper" shirt- you have to pick your battles sometimes). She woke me up first thing this morning asking for her candy corns... well, who can blame her? I got up and ate a peanut butter cup.