Sunday, December 18, 2011

Santa's visit photos (finally)

As promised, pictures from Santa's visit to our house

Wesley, pre-visit, completely unaware that Santa will be there soon.

"Um... are you sure he's ok?" (He really wasn't acting unsure of Santa, but he sure looks it in this shot)

Merry Christmas!

Again, another serious face from Wesley, and our attempt to get Claire in the photos (even though she didn't want anything to do with Santa)

Wesley with the gingerbread house that we made together (from a kit)

I want THIS one. (Talking about what piece he wanted to eat first)


He really wanted to taste one of the peppermint candies.


Friday, December 9, 2011

Santa's visit

Last night, we had a surprise visitor stop by the house. Well, it was a surprise for the kids. Charles and I knew he was coming. Our neighborhood organizes an event where volunteer Santas and sometimes their elf or Mrs. Claus helpers come visit the kids at their homes. All we have to do is sign up via email. Super easy and so cute to watch.

So, I was keeping an eye out for Santa at the front window last night before dinner (he was scheduled to arrive at 6:00) when Wesley noticed me. He stopped what he was doing and started watching out the window. Funny enough, that's when Santa drove by (he was riding in the passenger seat of a minivan) with the lights on in the car. Wesley saw him, shrieked that he saw Santa, and then started getting really upset when Santa kept going. (I think the driver wasn't totally sure where our house was) Wesley was very upset that Santa hadn't come to his house because he really wanted to talk to him about Christmas gift ideas. I convinced him that Santa was probably going to another child's house first and would be back later or that his driver was lost (NOT Santa, of course, because he knows where everyone lives).

Sure enough, the car came back within seconds and Wesley started jumping up and down when he saw Santa get out and start walking up our driveway. He ran to the front door and whipped it open. Santa yells out "Why, hello Wesley!" At this point, Wesley goes still, opens his eyes as far as they can go, and has this look on his face like "Santa knows my name!!!" He lets Santa in and after some coaxing proceeds to tell Santa what he wants for Christmas. (Santa wants snow for Christmas if anyone was wondering) Wesley told him that he wanted a garbage truck, a dump truck, and a scooper (our slang for excavator). (Two out of three are in our closet; the garbage truck was a new addition to the list).

Claire was being super shy, hiding her head in my shoulder, and even started to cry when Santa got too close. She eventually warmed up (some) when she saw Wesley was ok with him, but still didn't want to get too close. Wesley informed Santa that Claire wants a baby for Christmas. (And, to clarify for some people, that's a baby DOLL, not another baby sibling. Don't get any ideas from that statement.)

We were able to get some pictures of Wesley with Santa and some with Wesley, Santa, and Daddy holding Claire nearby. I haven't gotten them off my camera yet, but will upload them along with a short video I took of Santa's arrival soon.

Wesley couldn't stop talking about Santa's visit for the rest of the evening. He was very excited to tell his friends about the visit today at school and had all kinds of questions about how Santa got in the chimney, how his gift would possibly fit into a stocking (which is where he thought all gifts from Santa had to go), why Santa's reindeer had to wait at the elementary school down the street while he was visiting us (that was Santa's explanation for where they were), etc. It was a very fun evening and we're happy to be part of such a great neighborhood tradition.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Thanksgiving weekend

Here are some more pictures from Thanksgiving weekend.

Claire and Wesley loved building towers and knocking them down (or, said another, more accurate way, having Grandpa Snook build towers and then they got to knock them down)

A cute demolition crew

Domino blocks

Ribbon dancing

Uncle Mark introduced Wesley to Angry Birds, which he now loves.

One of Claire's new favorite things to do is to sit down next to Morgan's bowl and hand feed her her food, piece by piece.

No, Mommy, I promise that I'm not eating it. (crunch, crunch, crunch)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

Thanksgiving morning, Aunt Ann and Grandpa Snook ran in the Berbee Derby in Fitchburg, along with a huge number of other people. Here we are waiting for the race to start.

With Uncle Mark.

Playing "jump the crack" when we got bored waiting for the race to start (we got there too early)

The runners, post-race

Wesley helped me stuff the turkey this year.

And loved putting the ingredients inside the bird himself.

Helping Uncle Mark with the mashed potatoes

On a completely unrelated note, Wesley was asking the other day about what it was like to eat coconuts, so we bought him one.

Daddy cut it open and they poured out the milk. Wesley was very apprehensive about trying it but watched curiously as Aunt Ann and Daddy drank it.

Mmmm, good. Ok, so maybe it's not bad.

I'll try it too.

OH! Yuck!!!!

First Thanksgiving at the new house. What a great visit with family!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Wesley in his skeleton costume. He didn't want to wear the mask last night but I put it next to him on the steps so everyone could see it. He'd worn it so many times to scare people in the days before Halloween, that I think he was tired of it.

Claire in her Little Red Riding Hood costume. She wouldn't stand still, and this was the best shot I could get.

Wesley with his friend Maddox leaving the first house while Claire goes up with Daddy to see what the boys had been doing.

Checking out the loot from the first house. She pulled out both pieces and tried to leave them there on the sidewalk.

Keeping up with the boys.

Giggling and screeching as she ran to catch up.

"Trick-or-treat!" (Wesley and Maddox had lots of fun together, when they weren't arguing about whose turn it was to ring the bell)

Claire picking out something good (and probably something she won't be allowed to eat)

Wesley trying out Maddox's costume after they were done trick-or-treating.

Pumpkin carving

A few days before Halloween, Grammy and I helped the kids carve some pumpkins. Wesley liked pulling out all the goop and Claire liked pulling goop and seeds out and trying to eat them. Messy, but fun.

Claire trying to see what's inside the pumpkin (and why we're all making a big fuss about it)

Getting ready to taste the scoop after it's been in the pumpkin.

Wesley making sure we got all the goop (and copying Claire).

Off to the next pumpkin (and a good shot of how much she managed to get on her shirt).

And on her face.

Carving with Grammy and making an "Ewwww" face

What's in here?

Taking another look in the pumpkin to see if there was any good stuff left.

October Cowles visit

Grammy and Papa Cowles came for a visit of the long Halloween weekend. They helped us accomplish many of the things we wanted to get done around the house (stripping wallpaper, installing smoke detectors, etc.) and enjoyed spending time with Wesley and Claire. (Thank you for all the help!) They also rented a full-sized van to bring up some things from Kansas to furnish the house. Wesley was fascinated by the van and wanted to go for a ride. We pacified him with some trips up and down the driveway. These are some pictures of his first trip with Papa.

Papa wearing his favorite hat and Wesley wearing the kid's version he received from Papa and Grammy as a gift.

Happy to be getting to ride in the van.

Putting on his worker gloves (not sure why, but it was funny)

Smile for the camera!

What a cutie! (And, yes, his shirt is on backwards. He wanted to see the ball and couldn't see it when it was on his back.)

Getting ready to go.

Helping Grammy strip wallpaper in the family room. Grammy and Papa did practically the whole room while they were here. What a huge help! We're hoping to have it cleaned, primed, and painted by Thanksgiving and will give an "after" picture then.