Snowed In

It is so nice to be home! We had a FABULOUS visit with our cousins Brian and Christi, Jordan, Megan and Nella, and Aunt Kathy and Uncle Jim (and all the rest of the family that braved the weather for the family party Saturday), but it is so nice to be home!

I had work in Everett Friday, and we had a Family Christmas party Saturday, so we braved the weather and took a chance and headed through Everett and out to Snohomish Friday afternoon. The weather reports said it was going to snow on Sunday ~ we had plenty of time to visit, right? So we did! But the snow came Saturday. We maybe could have made it out Saturday had it not been for the champagne and beer we'd enjoyed, anticipating an overnight stay and a drive out Sunday morning. By Sunday morning, however, the snow was sooo deep in Snohomish and we were so high up a "mountain," and the snow was still falling ... I was not about to take a chance and get stuck in the middle of a hill (or middle of nowhere!) with snow falling all around me and three kids to tote to shelter and warmth. No way.

So, we stayed Sunday as well. It snowed even more. We lost power. There was talk of little water supply/pressure, no gas stove, low propane anyway, which also meant heat would be dwindling, and there was lots of bean soup in our future (although we had lots of leftovers and pizza and didn't get need to dream of soup just yet!). I will say though that Santa was beginning to barter with the relatives in case he needed to visit the kids in Snohomish rather than in Bellingham where he'd stockpiled his goods ~ "Can we wrap that lovely, used stuffed animal?" "What did you get for your grandkids? They won't be making it up ... can we buy it off you now and replace it before you see them?" Plus three kids in homes not kid-proofed and a mom without her usual bag of activities to keep them challenged and from going stir-crazy ... I was beginning to feel like we were going to wear out our welcome if we claimed another day.

So we packed up early and hit the foot and a half of unplowed, untraveled snow. It may have the worst blind spot I've ever seen a vehicle have and next-to-no rear sight, BUT the Jeep Commander ROCKS in the snow! We made it. Slowly but surely. My new charge to you all. Seriously, people, if you have to drive, do it slowly and carefully! I have seen more accidents, spin outs, flips, etc. this week than I have seen in my whole life. And semi drivers ~ you're the worst. Slow it down (and you won't flip either Semi-Driver Guy at I-5 Lakeway exit).

Thanks, Family for putting us up and putting up with us! We had a BLAST!! *Pics and stories to come! Happy Holidays!!

And now ~ the weather forecaster is predicting more snow. We hardly made it up our hill today as it was! We have mounds of snow! Will we again be snowed in?! I've got a Jeep. And a gas stove. And propane lines. And gas heat in my floors. ... (could use a few more candles and better locate the flashlights and batteries but ...) ... Bring it on!

Let it (Keep) Snow(ing)!!

Great Snow of 08

We have been hit so hard! I love it! First we got about 7 inches, then it compressed. Then we got roughly another 11 inches. Then that compressed. Then we got hit again with another foot! Three rounds of shoveling off the driveway (thanks, Kevin!) and three rounds of sledding opportunities! I am telling you ~ from Wednesday to today (Monday), it has been a snowy wonderland at my house! And we love it! Cookies, hot cocoa, snow angels, sledding. It really is Christmas time ... and suddenly it's going so fast!! Two more days till the jingle bells ring on Santa's sleigh!!!

*It was also a snowy wonderland at my neighbor's house. The photo above is actually swiped off samuelsenboys.blogspot.com and is courtesy of Jenn S. That's her (and Phil's) table and her side of our fence.

I've Been Tagged!

Jenn S. tagged me ~ and directed me to post the fourth picture in the fourth picture file (which not too ironically was the fourth month - saved under 4.06). So for your absolute joy:

Collin at a year and a half! I never did buy this photo ~ snagged it off their website but it's too grainy to print; not too grainy to post though! Seeing it now, three years later, I totally wish I had purchased it! (Wish I had purchased this one too, which was snagged in even smaller pixels - sorry!)
Shana ~ TAG!!!


Christmas Decorating 2008

Anyone who has been to my house the morning after Thankgiving dinner or who has tried to look through the boxes piled in my "under the stairs" closet knows that I LOVE decorating for the Christmas holiday season. This year was no exception ~ and it was even more special as the boys shrieked for joy taking ornaments they had made out of the boxes, putting the gumdrops on the gingerbread house, and singing "Jingle Bells," "We Wish you a Merry Christmas" and "Baa, Baa Black Sheep" (!) all evening long!
This is Collin's fourth Christmas, and he is entranced in the spirit and magic of the season. We had a five minute debate over where best to hang the Christmas stockings this year: 1. Needed to be in a place Santa would be sure to see them, but 2. They could not be on the fireplace mantle because Kate would pull them down and the hanger would hit her in the head. Ultimately, he was quite pleased and decided we could leave the "gingerbread cookies" (which he remembered we'd made for Santa last year!), milk and carrots by the fireplace with a note and an arrow showing Santa that the stockings were hung in the window just to the right!
While Collin was more interested in setting up the snowmen, hanging the stockings, etc., Owen LOVED decorating the tree. He put the first and the last ornament on the tree this year with such joy! He has inherited my passion (or OCD depending on who you ask!) for finding the "perfect" place for each ornament and stayed up with me till 11:30 p.m. the first night hanging and re-hanging the many ornaments! To this day, he and I have each moved at least one ornament a day because we'd discovered it still wasn't in the "perfect" place!
We did lose three ornaments this year in the excitment of discovery ~ oh boy was my patience tested! But I was so excited that they were so enthusiastic and had so many stories of memories already made in past years that I just smiled and enjoyed the tradition.
Kate got her first shiner halfway through the evening (see her left eye) ~ tried to take steps towards the tree and away from the ornament box ~ fell on an ornamental coffee cup. She didn't mind though. She jammied up and rallied on! Happy Holidays!!

Kate and Saint Nick

Kate met Santa at the Fairhaven Gingerbread Festival this year, which we attended for the second year with my girlfriend Clara and her two kids: MaryJane and Marcel (born 2 weeks after Kate). Neither of the boys would talk to Santa, let alone get on his lap or pose for a picture ~ they did accept his candy cane treat though! But Collin said later: "Next time I'll get on his lap for the picture, Mom. I saw how much fun Kate had."

Classic Memories

The first snowfall of the season! We were at Grandma and Grandpa J's, and the boys couldn't wait to get outside and play in the snow!
We had a fantastic fun-filled past weekend: Christmas with G&G J, Visit with Great Grandma G (GGG), Merry-go-Round Ride Downtown, Lunch & Shopping with G&G Y Sunday. But nothing topped the fun no one had planned on!

Me on Sunday night: What was your favorite part of the weekend?

Collin: Playing in the snow with Grandpa! He got us LOTS ~ but we'll get him next time!! And remember when we went up and down the big hill and Grandpa had to put chains on the tires?!

Owen: The snow! (What about it?) Snowball fight with Grandpa!!

Yes ~ I am THAT mom. I bundled Kate up and plopped her in the snow for the sake of "experience" and photo opp! She was so wrapped up inside the pink snowsuit though that she could hardly sit up straight! Ultimately, she toppled backward and made her first snow angel on the picnic table!
*Don't worry, she was in the cold less than two minutes. I quickly took the snow shots, swooped her up, stripped her down, and snuggled her silly!

We ended up getting 5 inches of snow Saturday night in our backyard, and most of it is still there. Tonight weathermen predict up to 8 inches! Woohoo! *Should have bought some chains like Grandpa told us to! ; )