Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas at Our House!

I hope everybody had a fantastic Christmas and a Blessed Yule, if you celebrate. I wanted to take some pictures to share our home during Christmas.

These first two are, of course, of the front of our house. One, slightly further away than the other. Oh, and in this first pic, you can see some of the snow that was falling thickly on Christmas Eve. Not as much a White Christmas as my Dad and Sis Kori had in Spokane, but still.

I love the icicle lights we've got hanging from the eves, but not so much with the lights around the window. That's ok. I'm not going to tell hubby that, as he did that just for me because he knows I like Christmas lights (however, most people have gone completely tacky these days it seems). And he wanted to do something nice for me this year, knowing I might have a harder time with NO family in the area this year, for the first year in my life.

This next, shows the silly Snoopy & Woodstock Christmas sign Scott hung on the front of the house. Again with the goofy as hell, but in a sweet way. (Also our welcome signs that we hung up this autumn, in the two days when the first snows had melted completely away.)

Next come some pictures of our Christmas tree. This one is taken without a flash, so you get to see the lights in all their glory. I REALLY prefer colored lights on the tree, but this tree came pre-lit, so it's much easier to assemble and doesn't take up much room in our little house. These pictures of the house and the tree were all taken Christmas Eve.

Next, a pic of the tree WITH flash, so you can maybe get some idea of my ornaments. I think I've hardly got two ornaments exactly alike on the tree. Oh wait! I've got two on there that are apples (plastic, of course, as real wouldn't last year to year). And I've got 2 that are lighthouse ornaments (Santa in front of a holiday lighthouse) that Dad gave me for Christmas a couple of years back. Beyond that, it's a total mish-mash of ornaments. I've got a couple of store-bought ornaments for Tay (Scooby in his dog-house, decked out for Christmas; a Tigger suspended from a couple of springs so he "boings!"). I've got a LOT of hand-made ornaments from friends. I've got a LOT of handmade ornaments from Tay. I've even got a couple of new ornaments she and I made together this year at the Correspondence Program's Christmas Party. And no topper for the tree. I'm not very big on angels, and we can't find a star that doesn't either completely over power the tree or require a secondary extension cord running the length of the tree. So, no topper. Which is fine. That light at the top does a perfect job of lighting it up even so. With the lights off, it almost looks star-like.

And here we get into Christmas morning, opening presents. Don't mind the messy hair. Neither Tay nor myself had taken the time to brush our hair yet.

The one here of me is the ONLY pic Scott took of me. *chuckle* He'd labeled this tin of Almond Roca from Jenny. (Our Samoyed mix dog.)

Here's Tay opening up the lined Crocs her daddy got her. Scott got us both a pair of those lovely lined crocs. I've taken to wearing slippers when it's too cold to go barefoot, and I can tell you that it definitely helps keep a body warmer. Well, we've had a hard time finding slippers that Tay will wear. Hopefully she'll wear these. Tay's are black with black liner, mine are brown with cream liner.

Here we get into Scott and Tay opening their gifts from Mom.

She sent them each a Green Bay Packers (American football team, Tori and Toasty!) jacket. Scott also got a nice long-sleeved shirt that looks like something a coach would wear on the sidelines, when it's not cold enough for a jacket.

Tay, holding up her jacket from Mom.

And now we get to see them try their jackets on for size!!! They were both pretty thrilled to open these gifts.

Can you see the living room of my house in the background of these pictures??? *grin* Don't mind the clutter of course, please. It seems I've scarcely got time to tidy things up, these days.

Oh, and Mom got Scott a pair of boxers as well, with the Packer's logo all over them. This prompted some pretty comical conversations. Scott's first response was "Does your mom REALLY think I'm that fat???" Apparently the boxers are in a size larger than he normally wears. I reminded him that Mom doesn't exactly have either the desire or the wherewithall to check what size undershorts Scott wears, so she picked the size that was also the size shirt she got him. They are a bit loose on him, but they'll probably shrink up a bit with a wash, and he's wearing them for pyjamas, so loose isn't totally bad.

Here we get into pictures taken over at the inlaws on Christmas Day.

The first, a pic of Tay holding her cousin, baby Brooklynn. This is my sister-in-law's youngest. The boys were out in Paxon with their Dad for the day and wouldn't be back till later in the evening. In fact, we've still got their presents under OUR tree, as they weren't around to open them.
It astonishes me how little personality Brooklynn has yet, even at 7 months old. Tay was personality from the day she was born, inquisitive and strong-willed. Always had to be checking things out. Tay also took her first steps at 8 months old. Brooklynn is just starting to crawl and cannot yet sit up on her own. I know that it's not like Brooklynn is actually late in achieving those feats (Tay was excessively early, actually). But it's somewhat strange all the same. That's the MIL standing in the background by the tree.

Here are a couple pictures of me holding the younger of my nieces. *grin* She is a sweety, when she's not fussy. I hope she grows up better natured than either of her two brothers.

Oh, and here we get a bit of a response when I start talking to her. She always seems suprised when I talk to her. Like she wonders at the oddity of a big person carrying on a conversation with her.

I wonder that maybe nobody else really talks to her. I know that a lot more yelling is done around her than is talking. Not at Brooky herself, but at her brothers, and between her parents. But it seems (and it seemed when Tay was a baby as well) that the few words invested in talking to the baby are done in unintelligable baby-talk (gobbledy-gook). Other than that, it's seemingly determined by MIL and SIL that since baby's cannot talk back, they're not worth talking TO. Fortunately I've seen Dan, Brooky's Dad, talking to her in a few quiet moments. And Tay and I talk to her. Not scientific conversations, or politics obviously. But real words spoken in real tones (if softer and somewhat sillier tones than I would use for her older brothers).

A couple more pics of Tay with the baby. Yep, that's Tay wearing a Packer's stocking cap that Mom got her for Christmas as well. She spent half the day with it on.

I tried to turn this one right side up. And I was able to do that in the modifying software, but it didn't turn up that way when I loaded it in here. *sigh* Sorry bout that. You'll just have to turn your heads to the right to see properly. *grin* (Tori, this one is Tay laying on her side on the floor with the baby.)

Just because I could, a pic of Brooky's Dad, as he was trying to figure out how to get a picture of Tay with Brooky with SIL's camera. Evidently the batteries were dead, which is why it wouldn't turn on. That's MIL and SIL in the background by the table.

And last but not least, here's a pic of Tay, MIL, FIL, and Scott around the table after SIL and Dan have left for Dan's Mom's house. Scott, Tay and MIL had been playing Monopoly (the newer, credit-card World Edition, another gift from my Mom). They spent at least 3 hours playing that game. Which is pretty precisely the reason I HATE that game. That, and I've never been big on board games. Not really. I'll play them once in a while, but I don't find them all that fun.

It was kinda comical as well, Tay tipping up from that big bottle. It's actually non-alcoholic sparkling apple cider. Last year, Tay had one that Scott caught her drinking from, and the look on her face and the way she was holding it really DID make her look like she was drinking champaigne or something. Not the case. Tay hates even the smell of alcohol and has never tried to steal our drinks. I hope that she continues in that mind-frame. But the MIL was peeved this year that Tay was drinking out of the bottle. There was only a little bit left, the FIL didn't want to put the bottle back in the fridge with that little left, and there was no sense in Tay's mind (or mine or Scott's or FIL's for that matter) in Tay dirtying up another glass when she could just tip up the bottle. It's not like she was back-washing when others might want some cider.

Anyway, so that was Christmas at our house. All in all it went pretty dang well. Tay minded her manners, no temper tantrums. Same could be said for SIL. She only got snotty with Dan a couple of times and kept it pretty mild at that. The baby fussed a bit, but it was kinda funny as well. She only fussed when she wanted to nurse, and you'd hear her going from fussy to actually out-right laughing when she caught sight of the milk-producing mammary-glands of her mama. *wink*

I felt bad for the FIL. He's struggling with the onset of diabetis, and yet he's adamant that it's not going to change his life at all. That's causing him to have problems already. One of which was that he somehow fell off of the stool in the kitchen on Christmas morning as he was working on prepping some of the goodies. MIL says he passed out (he hadn't yet been drinking more than a shot of Irish Cream in his coffee, either!) and fell off the stool. FIL says MIL pushed him off. *rolling my eyes* Either way, he had his foot hooked around one of the legs of the stool, and when he went over he wrenched his ankle. So he was walking with a hobble all day long.

I wish for his sake, and for the sake of his son (Scott), FIL would start taking better care of himself. Even if FIL isn't thrilled about prolonging his life with his nag of a wife (MIL is a HORRIBLE nag!), at least I wish he'd consider how devistated Scott's going to be when FIL passes away. Scott regards his dad as his own best friend. It really freaks Scott out that his Dad may not be long for this earth. It's bad enough that Scott's grandma's almost 90 and probably will not make it another year. The thought that his Dad might pass away in the next couple of years is so incomprehensable that Scott refuses to even consider it. Which means that if/when it does happen, Scott's going to be completely blown away by it.

Anyway..... I've gotta get the dogs outside for their morning potty-break. They've been locked in their kennels watching me write all this. But, I wanted to get it posted! And Tay wants me to cut her some sourdough bread for breakfast. So.....

Have a Blessed Day!


LadyStyx said...

That tree is absolutely beautiful. Very nice looking family there too.

Tori_z said...

Sounds like you had a nice Christmas. :)

I'm still waiting for my snow. :(

Brooklyn's not going to be very responsive if people aren't bothering to communicate with her much. Babies make the best progress in developing their skills in communication and their motor skills if they are encouraged to do so by those around them, and it sounds like she's not really encouraged, so I'm not surprised to hear she's only just learning to crawl and doesn't really do much else.

Connie Peterson said...

Lots of Christmas pictures to share ... thank you! Your little niece looks sweet but "vacant." I think you are right - babies need to be TALKED to, with real words to grow and mature.

I'm glad your Christmas was stress-free (within bounds, anyway).

Good Yule!

peppylady said...

Sound like an active Christmas day for your family.
There a lot of Packard fans here a lot of people who moved in this area came from Wisconsin.

Coffee is on.

MarmiteToasty said...

Lovely lovely LOVELY this post and photos just truely LOVELY......