Friday, January 21, 2011

More of December...

Caden sporting sweatbands

Mark did a wonderful job making toy chests for the kids and I don't know if I ever posted anything on them. He just recently had name plates made as well. The kids (and I) love to put the toys away in them! Every time Sammy opens them up it is like Christmas all over again!
Sammy visits Overfield
Big brother was showing her how to feed the fish.

Caden putting peanut butter on the pinecones for the birds
Papa Joe and Natalie (first meeting) the 5th grandchild
Sammy and Joey sledding at Joe's house
Papa Joe and the lobster! Her boots wouldn't stay on, and then Molly (dog) kept pulling the orange gloves off like it was a game!
Gigi, Caden and Sammy sledding
Gingerbread house neighborhood
Next year should be a little easier.

Little drummer girl
Caden and Gigi making gingerbread cookies, he actually did really good helping!

Sammy and Nia checking out the snow and squirrels
She loves her Nia
My parents have a really neat clay art piece that is displayed in their cabinet. It is an Indian woman sitting down with about 12 kids/people all around her, the whole thing only sits about 8-10inches high. She has been dubbed the "storyteller". So now when we are up there, Caden and Joey always ask Papa Joe for a story and it is absolutely amazing the creative stories that he comes up with! And usually the stories have some sort of indian dance that goes along with it, like you see below. Enjoy!
video

Monday, January 17, 2011

What to do with all the Christmas cards?

Not sure if I wrote about this last year or the year before, but thought I would post a creative idea. If you are like us, we are getting more and more picture Christmas cards every year. Instead of throwing those pics out I found a creative idea online a couple years ago.
http://junkmailgemsblog.blogspot.com/2008/12/recycled-christmas-placemats.html
Now she did this a little more perfect than mine turned out, but I am not going for perfection here.
Scissors worked just fine for me. (She has a lot of other neat ideas on her blog as well!)

Placemats!
1. Cut out the pictures, some text and the year also...anything that is special to you.
2. Use two pieces of large holiday scrapbook paper facing opposite directions (used wrapping paper the first year, but the scrapbook paper is a little easier)
3. Place photos, text and the year if you can find it on a card(fun to look back)
4. Put tape on back of objects to hold them in place, plus then you can move them around easier
5. Take to Staples or other office supply store that can laminate. (Had Staple
s use their thickest laminate and run through two times)
6. Enjoy for years to come!
The kids love looking at all the pictures and plus they can practice the names of their friends and family!

Monday, January 10, 2011

more Christmas!

Caden couldn't resist and had to get out and play in the snow with the backhoe of course! We also did some sledding but phew that was exhausting. We had fun, but over 10inches of snow makes it hard for a 2yr old to walk around! 10+ inches of snow = tired mommy
Nia was so happy with all the snow!
Sammy and Caden were constantly fighting over this huge gorilla at my parents house. Sam was in heaven when she got to sit in his lap and suck on her thumb! Thank goodness that thing didn't come home with us!
Our funny little bean
sneaky baby slipped out of my hands during a changing, just had to get a pic. Love the look with the striped socks and dipe. too funny!
Cute little Charlie is coming into his own now. His personality is really starting to show a bit. It is funny to watch him while the other three are running around and yelling. He isn't quite sure who to look at, but he cannot stop watching them.
Best pic I could get of 4 out of the 5 grandkids
Caden (28mths), Joey(33mths), Charlie(7mths), Samantha(13mths)
little reindeer getting ready for tuba Christmas
Charlie and Joe at Tuba Christmas
Tuba Christmas is something that we went to when we were little tikes and we were able to take the kids while we were up there this year. As you can see in the photo below, there are a lot of tubas (and variations of the tuba family) that get together at EJ Thomas Hall and play Christmas carols. It is great also, because most of the musicians decorate their instruments with lights and wreaths. So much fun! I think they really liked it, but next year will be even better.
a little video of tuba xmas
video
Aunt Marie and Joey
Papa Joe cornered some young tuba player and was able to get the boys up close to see his tuba and hear him play!
Santa Sammy
Gigi with Caden and Joey


Sammy (Cindy Loo-Who) had more fun climbing on the presents than she did opening them!
The boys tickling papa Joe
my new niece Natalie Marie Warmus was born on 12/8/10
Jen and Brian are such great parents already. She is a lucky little girl.
She is so cute and has a full head of dark hair, just like her mama did when she was born!

While up visiting my family, we had the LaGuardia side Christmas party at the family property. It was great because we were even able to have mass out there before lunch
Sammy post candy cane!
The kids have been crazy about candy canes this xmas.

more to come soon...
video

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Lots of Christmas

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
We have been having so much fun in December that I am just getting to putting the pics up...seems to be a trend here. We have been all over the state and are happy to be home and not traveling too much this month. Due to the mass amounts of xmas get togethers, I will have to put pics up in different posts. Too many good ones to put them all in one!

Here is Dr.Sammie with her stethoscope on. Thanks to fun Aunt Sarah (old friend from high school)

We have been watching the birds a lot this winter. While eating breakfast the other morning Sammie became very excited when she looked out the front windows. Dad tried to get there in time, but missed the pic of all the birds in our yard. But he got them right when they took off.
Sammie Claus helping me make dinner
Christmas Eve in Russia with the entire Francis clan.
Uncle Eric and Samantha
Papa Dave and Sammie in her pretty dress
family shot with Grandpa Tommy
Although this picture isn't that clear, it makes me laugh. Sammie gets so excited and this picture caught her in action!
Setting up a picnic with Grandma Marge on Christmas day
Tea party with Grandma Marge and Grandpa Tom

Sammie must have thought these big ropes were some kind of necklaces.

Caden checking out his new Toy Story 3 book

Aunt Liz singing xmas songs with Caden
Uncle Ryan, Sammie, Uncle Scot relaxing and watching a movie
(looks like Sam is trying to sneak some food)
Caden chowing down on popcorn while watching Toy Story 3
Cousins having fun!
Payton and Sammie enjoying a snack together
Playing in the tent and tunnel