Monday, December 31, 2007

Catching up on Christmas
It's been busy so I haven't had a chance to update my blog. On 12/23, Jason was in our church's Christmas pageant. He played Joseph and did a wonderful job! He seems to learn by osmosis because I never saw him practice his lines yet he knew them all.

That night we went to our church's Christmas party where I finally got a picture of Jess on Santa's lap without her crying. At first I couldn't get her near him but then another woman picked her up and plopped him on his lap quickly and I snapped the shot.

Christmas Eve we put out reindeer food - oatmeal and colored sugar -NEVER GLITTER because it's bad for the birds that may peck at the oatmeal. Jess didn't quite get the idea of sprinkling it and just kept throwing the baggie of oatmeal.

Christmas morning we went downstairs at 6:45. Thankfully Mike didn't have to work. Other years, if he was working on Christmas, Jason and I would get up at 5 with him. If he was getting off Christmas morning, Jason and I would wait until he got home before going downstairs. The kids got a ton of stuff.

Evidence that the man in red had been there.

Jason with his glow in the dark ghost pirate ship.

This will probably be the last Christmas she's excited about getting clothes until she's a teenager.

Jess with her new Elmo potty. She loves it but only wants to sit on it fully dressed.

Jess with her new backpack and her rose petal cottage. That thing was a pain to put together!!

Jason with his pig launcher.

That afternoon we went to Mike's aunt's house in Stoneham. It was fun introducing Jess to people she hasn't met yet. She really took to Margaret and threw her arms around her legs. That's unusual for her to do with a stranger. She enjoyed playing ring around the rosey with her.
My niece with Jess. My sister, mom, niece and nephew all met us at Mary's house so we got to see both sides of the family which was nice.

Every time we all get together, we try to get a pic of all the grandkids on Mike's side. It's very tough trying to get all 4 to look at once.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Breakfast with Santa

We took the kids last weekend to Breakfast with Santa at Jason's school. We found out that Jess loves pineapple! She slurped as much of that down as she could get her hands on. After eating, it was time to go see the Big Man. We tried to get their pictures taken together but Jess was having none of it. Jason had his picture taken and then I held Jess while another mom took a pic with my camera. It was just like Disneyland with the characters! Afterward we went to Colony Place to see Santa there. Jess loved the trees as much as she did last week but still wanted nothing to do with Santa. I'm hoping if we go each weekend she'll eventually get used to him.

Jess getting ready to go to breakfast with Santa

Jason with Santa

Jess's first Santa picture

She likes the small wooden Santa.

Santa at Colony Place. She wants the little plastic ruler he's handing out but her arm only stretches so far.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Supporters of P.O.O.P. Unite!!!

Okay so the acronym isn't all that great but I'm behind the concept 100%. It stands for People Offended by Offended People. Earlier this month, a local school canceled their 7th graders' field trip to see Miracle on 34th Street because some parents complained that there was (gasp!!!) Santa Claus in the play. If I found a field trip objectionable, I'd keep my kid home. But, keeping their children home would take away the complainers feelings of triumph in this case. If Jason or Jess went to that school, I'd take them out for the day and go see it with them myself. Yesterday I heard about a school in Ohio that canceled a play that the students were putting on only a couple weeks before it was supposed to open so all of their time learning lines, making sets, etc was for nothing. The offensive play? Agatha Christie's 10 Little Indians. According to WTKK, one member of the NAACP called and complained about this play. Was the NAACP concerned that Native Americans would be offended by the title? No. What the issue was that 60 years ago, in England, the book was released under the name 10 Little N's (inappropriate word for African Americans). It was never released in this country under that title and the title was changed in England 60 years ago. I know extremely few people who actually know the original title. As Michael Graham of WTKK said, (paraphrased because my memory isn't all that great at verbatim speech) "I'm tired of a small number of people who appear to be easily offended dictating what is allowed. You're offended by Santa Claus? Well, I'm offended that you're offended so need to stop being offended so that I won't be offended anymore! "

Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Black Friday!!!!

OMG!!! Why didn't anyone tell me how much fun Black Friday is?!?! Since we weren't going anywhere this holiday, I thought I'd check out this shopping phenomenon. I was up at 3:15 this morning. Those who know me know I'm not a morning person (exept on vacation, especially if it's Disney - then I go by the late to bed, early to rise rule). I was at Kohl's by 3:45; there were probably 100 people in front of me waiting for the store to open at 4. I talked to a woman behind me for a few minutes. I didn't get a carriage but I was able to snag a bag so I did okay with carrying everything. I was done by 4:20 and on my way to Toys R Us. That was a bit more crazy. I was there at 4:30 and the store opened at 5 so I talked to the 2 women behind me for a while. One went to get carriages and grabbed me one which was very nice. I got what I wanted and then waited in line. And waited. And waited. The line went around 3 sides of the store. Some people tried to cut in line but I wasn't about to go for that. I kept my carriage right behind the woman in front of me. I brought a book with me so I read that to pass the time. I was out at 6 and on my way to the mall. I hit Target, Gymboree, Borders, Children's Place and Hallmark. Unos was serving a breakfast buffet - all you can eat for $8.00 so I had home fries, english muffin, bacon, and sausage. My last stop was Michaels where I bought myself a present from the kids. I knew that Mike wouldn't have gone shopping yet and there was no way I was passing up an Ott light for $15.00. These are usually $60. I am finished shopping for everyone except 2 grab gifts!!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007


A year ago last Friday we were approved to be matched with Jess. What a year this has been! I am so thankful that our daughter is home with us and that she is healthy and happy.
Our first picture Our Christmas picture

Jess and Riley. Riley is Mike's cousin Erin's dog.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


Jessica loved Halloween. On Friday, we went to our church Halloween party. Jess wore her Red Sox outfit with a long sleeve onesie and tights to stay warm. Jason wore his Jason costume from last year and a mask that pumps blood. The mask was courtesy of Mike as I wasn't wasting $15 for something I knew he wouldn't keep on. After a dinner of spook-etti and meatballs, we played games and the kids had a blast. Then it was off to Jason's school for haunted hallways. People sign up to decorate doorways in the school and the kids and families go trick or treating. Jess was a little spooked since it was pretty dark but it was fun. On Halloween, I rushed out of work to get Jess from the sitter's. We went home and I got her dressed in her cheetah outfit (warmer and I could layer clothes underneath). I wanted to expose her to trick or treating in a lighted, familiar place so we went to the mall. I had to carry her at first but once she figured out people were putting candy in the bag, she was good to go. After that, we went home and met up with Jason's friends and parents and went around our neighborhood. When I dropped Jess off at home, she was not happy about missing out on the rest of the treats. When I took her to people's doors, she meowed at them which was so cute. It was a great Halloween. I can't wait to see how she likes Christmas!

Jessica meeting a new friend at church.

Jason and Jess at haunted hallways
Jess getting the hang of trick or treating
Jess ready to hit the neighborhood.
Jason in bloody mask

Monday, October 22, 2007

Just Because
I took some cute photos so I figured I'd post them here to share. Jess's hair is finally long enough to put in pony tails. She keeps them in better than barrettes. Isn't she adorable!! This is the dress she wore to get her picture taken by Olan Mills for the church directory. Of course, we ended up buying extra pictures. We should be getting them soon. We got a couple pictures of the kids and a family photo.

Her shirt says "Who needs a costume when you're already a princess". I think she'll wear this outfit to Haunted Hallways at Jason's school on Friday.

We got boo'd. Someone anonymously leaves a bag of treats at your door along with a poem and a picture to hang in your window. You in turn leave a bag of treats, a poem and a picture at someone else's house. You hang the picture so you don't get boo'd again.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Jess turns 2

Jess turned 2 on 9/23 but we celebrated on 9/22 since Mike had to work Sunday. While I'd been dreaming of a princess party, Jess had her own ideas and we ended up with an Elmo party. Maybe next year she'll be up for princesses. Mike had tried to put her down early for a nap but of course she'd have nothing to do with it. She ended up crashing right before it was time for cake. Jason stood in for her while she went down for a nap and blew out her candle. One of the families we'd traveled to China with had come to the party. I'd hoped to get a picture of the girls together but when they came Jess was already starting to crash. Hopefully we'll be able to get together again and I can get some pics.
Jason showing Jess the Mulan Kitty he made at Build a Bear for her.

Jess on Sunday finally getting a taste of her cake.


Jess loving Elmo.

The birthday girl on the front steps. I love her dress. I'd gone crazy trying to find a sweater for it since I thought it may be cold but of course, it ended up in the high 70's so she didn't need one.

Jess with her new instrument set.

Jess on her birthday ready for church.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Never Forget
Where were you when the world stopped turning
that September day?
Teaching a class full of innocent children
working on some stage in LA? - A Jackson
I had just finished doing calendar in my kindergarten class when my aide returned from the office and told me what happened. The teacher in the class next to me ran out; she was from New York and had family who worked at the Twin Towers. I didn't know anyone personally but I had coworkers from other jobs who lost people. Take a moment and say a prayer today for our country, our heroes, and the families who lost their loved ones.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Harry Potter/Camping

Last Saturday, I took Jason to see Harry Potter at Jordan's Furniture's IMAX. The last 25 minutes were in 3D and it was really awesome. We got up there early because you never know what traffic will be like and then Jason played his DS while I read sitting on the floor at the beginning of the line. We were the first ones in and got awesome seats. After the movie, we had ice cream while watching the liquid fireworks watershow in the lobby. Then it was off to the in-laws for the night before going to Maine on Sunday.

We got an early start on Sunday and stopped at Fort Williams in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. We walked around the mansion and fort ruins for a while and Jason waded into the ocean. I tested it but it was too darn cold for me! We continued on up to Casco, Maine where we would be staying at the Point Sebago Resort. We got there right on time. Of course, my sister, mother and niece were late and it was in my sister's name so we couldn't check in until they got there. Because we were going the last week of August, we got a deal on the park home. We were staying 2 nights for $140/night. Normally, you have to stay a week and the lowest price is $1400/week. After staying there, I can say it was nice but I would definitely not spend that amount of money to do so. The website said that floor plans could vary. To me that means that the furniture may be in different spaces or the rooms may be laid out differently. It does not mean that the room that looks to be a nearly normal size on the website would in fact be smaller than my bathroom. My mother had the best room with a double bed. Patricia and Michelle shared the futon (along with Michelle's many stuffed animals) in the living room. Jason, Jess and I were going to sleep on the bunkbed. The bunkbed mattresses were as wide as me. While, yes, I could stand to lose some weight I am not as wide as a normal twin mattress! The top bunk had no safety railing so we took the mattress off and Jason slept in the living room on it. Jess and I shared the bottom bunk - not sure quite how we managed it but we did. For some reason, everyone except for me seemed to forget that it gets cold in Maine at night. I brought a large comforter so I was comfortable at night; the next morning my mom told me she was freezing so she bought blankets at WalMart. We had a fire and roasted marshmallows - yum! That's the only part of camping that I miss. The camp has activities throughout the day for kids 3 and up. Jason spent most of the day on the beach and then went to play atomic dodgeball. We went on a hayride (where Jess fell asleep) and to a bonfire. On Monday, the rest of the family went home early but Jason, Jess and I stayed at the beach for a couple of hours. It was nice and relaxed then. We had a good time but I do think the place is overpriced.

Stopping for a stretch at a rest stop.

Trying out the water at Fort Williams

Fun on the sand

Lulled to sleep on the hayride.

Jason running through the waterpark at Sebago

Our very small bunk room

Thursday, August 23, 2007

August Moon Festival and Marshfield Fair
I got an email that Quincy was holding an August Moon Festival celebration last Sunday so Mike and I took the kids to check it out. There were games and arts and crafts for the kids. Jason won some candy and little toys. Jess colored a fan.

There was a lot of entertainment from dancing to singing to martial arts. This picture is from the Lion Dance.

I'm not sure what SpongeBob has to do with the festival.

Jess and Jason coloring paper airplaces to shoot at the moon (a large white ball) and win a prize

Yesterday I took the kids to the Marshfield Fair. It was Kids Day so the kids got in free. We went when we first moved here and Mike experienced culture shock with all the country exhibits - largest pumpkin, haystacks, greased pig racing.

You never know what you'll see at the fair. Here are some vegetable critters.

Jess likes the buffalo.

Jess loves birds.

Some country fiddling and songs about the pawpaw patch.

Jess got brave and loved feeding the goats. Jason's hands were wet from mining for gold and all the food stuck to them - ick!