My sister took my nephews to one of those mall photo studios for their Christmas photo. It turned out great. (please forgive my pictures of pictures- too lazy to properly scan them in. click to enlarge) While there she thought she’d kill two birds with one stone and get the boys’ Halloween pictures taken since she hadn’t had time for that til then. She got some funny looks changing the boys from winter clothes to Cowboy and Cow costumes, but if she walked out of there with the cutest Halloween costume pictures I’ve ever seen! Here’s Cowboy Jake and lil Cow Joey.

Body parts and balls of fire

I talked to my Dad over the holidays and got the update on my family in Florida. I called Jon after I hung up with my Dad and passed on the news:

What is wrong with your family?

What do you mean?

When we call home to Minnesota we hear about so and so’s new job, or a new baby, but pretty much everyone’s fine. Just fine.

Yeah, so?

You spend 10 minutes on the phone with your father and learn that he’s getting new body parts, your cousin has a disease, and your aunt’s house blew up. That’s just not normal!

So let me explain. My Dad has bad knees and is getting new ones in March. He’s a regular Mr. Potato Head. My cousin in NYC has been recently diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. That really sucks. They’ve had bad luck lately as her father, my uncle, fell out of his hay barn over the summer because of heat stroke. They say it will take him 8 mos to recover. He’s the one who chopped off his thumb last year. And that brings us to my Aunt and her house. Her husband, Uncle Soprano, was trying to light a fire in the fireplace downstairs when he knocked over the can of kerosene he was using (don’t ask me why). Blew up the house. My aunt was had to be rescued by the firefighters as she was stuck on the balcony of the second floor and couldn’t get down. They are ok but the house is really damaged and it totally destroyed their home office where they run his business. We are not the luckiest of families.

Christmas Day

This year we spent Christmas day at my inlaws’ house (we rotate every year) with my MIL, FIL, Marsha, Larry, and a ginormous tree. M & L are a couple that are great friends with my inlaws and us and they are very, very good to us. They couldn’t have kids and are extremely supportive of our adoption. I digress. Jon’s parents still give us stockings which is lots of fun. We ate way too much, had a great time hanging out with each other and then opened presents. Ling Ling & Mei Mei made out like bandits. I’m so ready to be a mom- I’m way more excited about presents for them than for me. We were on a strict budget this year (duh) so presents were few from us, but everyone liked what we picked out. For my MIL I found this scarf: She loves it- her nickname is Tootsie. My FIL is a judge so he got a big kick out of his disappearing civil liberties mug. Marsha & Larry loved their Eggstractor (who wouldn’t?). I swear, Jon’s parents are going to be such amazing grandparents. They put so much thought into everything. Baby chopsticks and a teeny rice bowl, 2 beautiful books, Ling doll, so much more. Click here to see all the goodies.

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve I spent the day at my mom’s while Jon worked. We exchanged presents with my nephews and my little sister and had a big time watching the boys play with all their goodies and opening presents.
Then I went home and did some last minute wrapping. Jon’s parents came over and brought dinner with them. Jon came home and we all had dinner and watched A Christmas Story- my favorite Christmas movie. Ike & Kea got all dressed up for their grandparents. And Ike helped my FIL with the cooking. Jon’s Gramy sent a fruitcake down from Minnesota for me and my FIL to share. I think we’re the only people on earth who get excited over fruitcake!

Merry Fork’n Christmas

All the visits have been made, the pie is consumed, the presents are opened. Whew. Let the recap begin. Friday Mom, Hale, Sara, Jake, Joey and I all went down to my Grandmommy’s for an early Christmas. My aunt, uncle and 2 cousins met us there. We had fun visiting and we brought Christmas dinner with us. Well, Jake is really talking up a storm now. But he can’t pronounce everything exactly right yet. Case in point- the work fork comes out: F@#$. Yep, the f word. And he doesn’t know he’s saying anything bad. He’s not even three yet. It’s a riot though. So we’re all sitting down for dinner and Hale (Papa) and Jake are sitting at the kids’ table. We’re all catching up on family news and what not when Jake drops his fork. Oh no. Next thing you hear is “Papa! F@#$! My F@#$! F@#$! Papa! F@#$! on floor!”. OMG. It was the classiest of Christmas dinners.

Happy Christmahanakwanzikah!

The next few days will be crazy busy so I just want to take a moment and wish all you fabulous bloggy people the most wonderful winter holiday of your choice! Enjoy every moment as you gather round your nondenominational shrub or light candles representing an ancient miracle or a newfound holiday. I for one am looking forward to spending Christmas holed up with my family playing with the babies and eating pie. And don’t forget we’re going old school this year and celebrating every single one of the 12 days of Christmas so the party won’t be over til January!

Wax on, wax off

So a few years ago, maybe 10, a friend of mine- we’ll call her Betty- and I decided that we were too poor to buy Christmas presents so we’d make them. We hand stamped our wrapping paper and it was good. We made our own cards, and they were good. So on to presents. We decided to make candles. At this time I lived in a 2nd story condo. This is important. We bought all the supllies and figured out that we could make each gift for only $5. We were stoked. We started by filling the jars with wax beads and the wick and then we’d top off the candle with a half inch of melted wax. We melted the first batch of wax like the instructions said- in a ziploc bag in water on the stove. Dammit- water in the bag. Threw the whole concoction over the balcony. 2nd attempt, same thing. Must have cheap bags. Switched bags for 3rd attempt, but when we pulled the bag out of the water all we saw was clear liquid. Dammit- foiled again. Over the balcony with the whole pot. Then it hit me. OMG. When you melt white wax beads the whole substance turns clear. O. M. G. We looked at each other and ran to the balcony and looked down. We had spent the evening tossing our dud candle makings over the balcony thinking it had all magically turned to water (did I mention we were having holiday cocktails?). The scene below was horrifying. We had successfully coated all of my downstairs neighbor’s shrubs, hanging baskets, balcony, grass, the works, with wax. Since it was winter and cool out the wax had cooled and hardened instantly. We petrified my neighbor’s house and landscape. Our candles turned out nice though. Heh.

No cohesive theme

Kanye West reminds me of a ventriloquist’s dummy. I love his music, the way he dresses, he’s as cute as can be, but his little face doesn’t move except his mouth. He has stationary cheeks.
My dogs eat dust bunnies so cleaning ceiling fans is a hassle.
My biggest fears: being buried alive, becoming a tortured hostage, going blind, being burned alive, drowning.
I have so much to do.
I suck at time management.
Although I can use these things, I have no idea how they work: fax machines, the internet, tv, cell phones. Boggles my mind.
I don’t like pasta salad (pasta should be hot in my book) or large doses of chocolate (cake, candy bars, solid chunks, ew).
I hate having to wear socks.
America’s Funniest Videos is one of the best shows on tv. It never fails to crack me up.
Before I die I want to tour the inside of an 18 wheeler’s truck cab.
Naps should be mandated by the government.
Also, before I die, I want to be a contestant on the Price is Right and Family Feud.
As I’ve gotten older I’ve lost my desire to go to: night clubs, loud concerts, the mall.
I’ve never been able to grow long fingernails. Or a garden.
I adore staying in hotels, traveling, going on cruises. Mainly for the fresh sheets and towels daily and the tiny toiletries.
I wonder if I’m stunting the growth of my eyelashes by wearing an eye mask to bed at night. (the picture is me trying to photograph my eyelashes but I can’t seem to have one eye open and one closed at the same time. I know it is a terribly sexy picture. Try and control yourselves.)
My almost 3 year old nephew has the cutest voice- he could read the phonebook and I’d hang on every word. Except he can’t read yet. One day.

Teeny tiny ghetto pug pictures

Ok, so for Christmas I don’t get those big photo cards. I stocked up on Christmas cards already and I add a wallet sized pug snapshot to each card. This year’s picture came out great. I photo shopped a message to the top of it and uploaded the pic to order prints. My pictures came in the mail and the print company, their name rhymes with CRAPDISH, had totally cropped my photo and the prints were nothing like last years. Last year there was a nice white border around each photo which made cutting them into 4s easy. This year, no border and they butchered my little message. You could only see the bottom parts of each letter. So I had to trim off the half message (which looked like a bunch of sticks) and send the pictures that way. Crapfish woudn’t send me new prints in time. To their credit they did credit my account, but that doesn’t help me this season. So now all our loved ones will be receiving teeny tiny ghetto postage stamp sized pug photos. You’re lucky bloggy people, you’ll get the full photo come Christmas. Count your blessings. Here’s a little teaser for you: Ike in his holiday finery. Click to enlarge. He looks like Mufasa.