Sugar Cookies

Today's family activity: making one sweet mess!


The Color of the Season

Dad: So Josh, do you want a Christmas tree this year?

Josh: Ya

Dad: Really?

Josh: YA!

Dad: Well, what kind of Christmas tree?

Josh: A yellow one.

Dad: A yellow one?

Josh: YA!

Dad: Josh, I don't know if they make yellow ones.

Josh: A yellow one.

Dad: Well, we'll look for a yellow one, but if they don't have a yellow one, do you want a green one?

Josh: Um, no. G-daddy green one.

Dad: Well, I think G-daddy will have a green one, but do you want a green one for our house?

Josh: No, yellow one.

Dad: Well, do you want a big yellow one or a little yellow one?

Josh: Um, big one.

Dad: Josh, if they exist, a big yellow tree would be really tacky. How about a little one?

Josh: Big one.

Dad: Well, here's a little yellow one, do you like that?

Josh: A big one.

Dad: Josh, they don't have a big one, Mom asked. Is the little one ok?

Josh: A big one.

Mom: Here's a big orange one.

Dad: (silently glares at Mom)

Josh: A yellow one.

Dad: OK Josh, there aren't any big yellow ones, do you want the small yellow one?

Josh: Um, YAH!

And to all a good night.

Shameless Plug for Aunt Steph

Aunt Stephanie flew in to visit us on Thursday. Since arriving, she's made two lasagnas, a batch of vegetable beef stew, 5 pounds of shredded seasoned chicken for tacos, nachos, and enchiladas, yummy guacamole, over 100 meatballs, and pumpkin spice muffins. She has a few days left, so we still have cinnamon rolls, sugar cookies, kolaches, squash corn muffins, and bread to make. She's a great cook and I'm so glad we have a deep freezer to hold all of her yummy creations.

Did I mention that Aunt Steph is a starving student trying to make it through one more semester before graduation? Last year she sold baked goods so earn some extra money, but was too busy with school this semester to get her website up. If you have a need for baked goods or meals between now and Tuesday evening, she might be available for hire.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming. Pardon the commercial interruption.


That one!

We've been reading Christmas books over and over and over again, which is par for the course for Josh. When he likes something, he really likes it. We've also been working the same 4 Christmas puzzles again and again. I am excited that he is excited about the Christmas story, but I sometimes have to remind myself that it is a blessing that he wants to talk about baby Jesus being born and the wise men coming to visit Him again and again.

This weekend we pulled out our Christmas decorations from the attic. As we decorated his little tree he "ooo'd" and "aahh'd" over all of the ornaments. He was especially interested in his nativity set. We put it on his little table next to his little tree. He arranges all the Little People so that everyone (including the animals) look at baby Jesus. He's obviously identified the star of the show. As we were playing he picked up the angel and made it fly through the air. This was our conversation:

- Josh flying the angel around

(Mom) - Was that angel sent from God?

(Josh) - Yes.

(Mom) - Does that angel have a message from God?

(Josh) - Yes.

(Mom) - What is the message?

(Josh) - That one. (Josh points to baby Jesus.)

Wow! I guess our reading, puzzles, and discussions are paying off!

Several times when we have talked about baby Jesus' birthday coming soon Josh has also made a point to ask about birthday cake (which to him means cup cakes). Well, of course baby Jesus needs birthday cake. Having birthday cake on Christmas isn't a bad tradition to start.

I have a feeling this Christmas will be very different than last year's for Josh. It is a lot of fun to see him forming an understanding of why we celebrate.


I Love Tommy!

I love my cousin Tommy. He likes Cars. I like Cars. He plays with trains. I play with trains. His dad even looks like my dad. We both like to play with Pap-pap. I like Tommy so much that I let him enter my personal space; I held his hand and hugged him. Crazy, I know!

Tommy and I wore matching PJ's (thanks Grammie), held cars in our hands, and watched "Happy Feet" with Pap-pap and Grammie.

We wore matching outfits (thanks again Grammie!) to see Santa and ride on Santa's Express train. Tommy sat in Santa's lap. I opted out. (We have some differences, too.)

We rode the train three times.

Tommy and I were so inseparable that we even took a bath together.

I hope you are lucky enough to have a cousin Tommy, too!

I'm gunna go play with Tommy again soon.


We spent Thanksgiving with dad's side of the family in Huntington Beach. It was a full house - full of fun, boys, and germs. I suppose that is a common trifecta. We all had a great time (with the exception of getting colds). Here's a summary of our trip in pictures.

We spent some time down at the beach building sand castles.

We took the requisite family pictures.

Pap-pap, dad, mom, and I took a walk down to the pier.

There was a lot of horsing around.

And bubbles. Bubbles make me laugh.


Showing signs of withdrawal

Translation: "G-mommy, G-daddy, where are you?"


Look at the village that I made! I made 5 different bag buildings and then allowed Little People to purchase the property. Due to current mortgage industry conditions, few Little People qualified for the loans. Too bad. Dad was concerned about the placement of some doors, but mom supported my creativity. In today's market, these Little People shouldn't complain. At least I gave them a fixed rate! I got the idea from my Highlights High Five magazine. If you notice in the back, I even made a tree. G-daddy collected the leaves when he was here earlier this month. I got the idea for the tree from Ella. Of course, I have my own ideas, too. I've been painting some original pieces. We only have one color paint, so I'm calling this series: BLUE. I told you that I'm original.



The Good Life

Yesterday, Josh and I (mom) went out for the morning while dad worked on his Sunday school lesson. Typically, when we are in the car, if I ask Josh if he'd like some music, his response is "No" and I sigh. This time, to my surprise, he said yes! I turned on the radio and Josh rejected all 6 of the stations that are preset on the radio. Great...his "no" means "yes." A true two year old. So, I turned on the CD player and he rejected the first Cure CD and then another. Double drat! Way to break your mom's heart, Josh! Big Audio Dynamite? Big fat NO! Then CD #4 started spinning - Material Issue's International Pop Overthrow. Josh calmly says, "yes." What? I asked to confirm that I heard him correctly. Yes. YES! Wow! We listened to the first song and then the second, "Diane." When the 2nd song ended, he asked for "more diane." I was so excited that he finally liked one of my songs that I pulled out the car's owners manual to figure out how to make it repeat the song. Tonight we introduced dad to the song and now all of us are singing the chorus together. It rocks!

After church today we went out to lunch together. While we were sitting in our booth waiting for our food a little boy - maybe 8 or 9 - stopped in front of us, started moving his mouth without talking, and then walked on by. Josh was mesmerized. He turned around and watched the boy who continued to send us silent messages and started doing the robot. Honestly, before having Josh I probably would have thought this kid was a nut, but now, he's free entertainment! Josh and this boy exchanged glances throughout lunch. At one point the boy even came over and asked Josh to turn back around. Then, the boy came back over and handed Josh the prize from his kid's meal. How awesome is that? I was stunned by this little boys act of generosity and kindness. Josh, as Josh does, stared at him, probably thinking "thank you." A DPS officer sitting nearby proceeded to thank the young man and gave him a "Junior Trooper" sticker. As the DPS officer was leaving he also gave Josh a sticker, which pleased Josh again. It really made me stop and think how easily we can be an example of generosity and kindness to others. A toy, a sticker, a smile...we have the power to make someone's day. Very cool Sunday lunch.

And because any post without a Josh picture isn't worth reading, here is a totally unrelated picture.


Sweet Berry Farm

This morning, g-daddy, mom, and I woke up with a sense of adventure and a clear calendar, so we drove out to Sweet Berry Farm. We took the scenic route which was a lot of up, down, and around.
The farm has goats, chickens, horses, and donkeys. And on this particular day, 600 elementary school kids who rode in on super cool buses and quickly took over the entire picnic area. We ate lunch in the back of an old horse trailer. I lost my juice box somewhere in the pumpkin patch. We searched behind the first million pumpkins and gave up. I should have worn a fanny pack.
I'm not kidding when I say that there were pumpkins all over this farm! There were even different colored pumpkins in bins together. I took a few minutes out of my day to reorganize some of the pumpkins for them. White pumpkins in one crate; orange pumpkins in the other. It doesn't take much to give back to the community. Pay it forward.
If you know g-daddy and mom, then you'll appreciate that we only spent $1.50 for our morning of fun and that was for two pumpkins. Heck I would have paid more than that just to ride the school bus. I gave the farm a thumbs up and hope to go back next year during berry picking season.
On the way home I practiced my ABC's over and over and over again, so I'm sure g-daddy and mom both know the alphabet now. Since they were so well behaved at the farm, I suggested that we stop by Brushy Creek Park on the way home. I slid down the slides for about 30 minutes before coming home to crash. It was a pretty good morning.


Camping Trip

We went camping with friends and more friends at Inks Lake last night. I had so much fun and can't wait to go camping again. Here are some highlights.

We gathered wood for a fire that Rocky built. We used the fire to make hot dogs and smores. The fire also helped us with the 40 degree temp drop.

I played with my friends. We played with balls, my wagon, side walk chalk, cars, and acorns.

We watched the sun set over the lake. We also saw people fishing on the lake. The pier was covered with big spiders and spider webs. Mom made us walk down the center so we wouldn't run into the webs.

I made funny faces for mom.

I played football with the boys. Football and camping are a winning combination.

I rode a horse. Mom called me cowboy.

We put our tent up at site 220.

Mom was there too.