Monday, December 28, 2015

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Merry Christmas from the OP – I think this is the first year our picture with Santa has (almost) everyone looking at the camera, so that is something!

We also packed two boxes for Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child. We've done boxes in the past, but I think this was the first year my boys really "got it". They decided to pack a box for a boy AND a girl, which both surprised me and made me proud. They had a fun time picking out everything and helping to fill the boxes and seeing them sent them off.

We decorated some gingerbread houses.

We decorated some cupcakes.

And, of course, we decorated a tree.

Christmas Eve, we opened our traditional Christmas PJs and watched The Grinch. Everyone was pretty tired by that point so Nate needed a little "direction" when it came time to look at the camera. Seth was happy to help.

The gift unwrapping on Christmas Day was (as usual) a frenzy. I managed to get a couple of quick pics of my boys digging into their stockings and that was about it.

– Hmm... this looks like pretty good stuff.
– I got some good stuff too.

– Is it better than mine? I'd better check.
 And last, but not least, a picture of the three of us. Merry Christmas everyone!

- L.

Rollin' With The Big Boys Now

– Hi everyone. It's me, Nate. I lost my first tooth and I've been making this face at everyone for the past month.

– I'm not too cool to brag a little. It's a pretty big deal.

- L.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

In Remembrance

"O Canada! Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy sons command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise,
The True North strong and free!
From far and wide, O Canada,
We stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land, glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee;
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee."

"Did you put water in there, Mommy? Those aren't
real poppies, you know."

Er... yes, I did know, but thanks. M. and I were able to watch the boys at assembly this morning as they sang both the National Anthem as well as reciting a poem they had learned along with their classmates:

Poppy, poppy, what do you say?
– Wear me on Remembrance Day.

Poppy, poppy, what do you tell?
– Many soldiers in battle fell.

Poppy, poppy, what should we know?
– That peace on earth should grow, grow, grow!

They also made some crafts and wore poppies (reluctantly at home, willingly at school - go figure!). The pictures were taken at the end of the day so please pardon our tired/overly excited expressions and blurry poppies. It's hard to sit still after observing an entire minute of silence earlier today.

- L.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Hallowe'en Everyone!

We had a fun time this year trying to make the house even spookier than last year.

The boys loved the "MAAAD!" pumpkin, but I favored the friendly ones personally.

And last but not least, the crow who got left out last year due to overly windy weather:

I made the mistake a few years back of baking goodies the day before Hallowe'en night – needless to say they got sidelined pretty quickly by the candy – so this year I wised up and made cupcakes well in advance of the big day. Again, the "MAAAD!" faced ones were the most popular.

A quick picture last night before heading out:

I had to promise to take just one so we could get going right away! They made a great Harry Potter and Ron Weasley for another year running, but I'll have to think up something new for next year. Great costumes though if you know anyone in the market for a costume duo.

And of course, the candy:

All the candy! We ended up hauling in more than we handed out, but at least 90% of everything was what the boys collected. Yikes.

This week was also "Spirit Week" at school with some daily fun activities like "Wear Your Pajamas To School Day" (no picture, but the boys did go in their jammies with a stuffed animal and some slippers), "Crazy Hats and Socks Day" (I managed to sneak in a quick pic while they were watching morning cartoons), and a Hallowe'en dance the same night, which we attended (I revisited their engineer costumes with the hats, bandanas and gloves paired with some work-type clothes but didn't have time to grab a picture).

This is Nate after the dance with his glow sticks and sporting one of Daddy's wigs:

He looks a little aglow himself by this point. Hard to believe he was sleeping hard 20 minutes after I took that photo.

Happy Hallowe'en, everyone!

- L.

Friday, October 23, 2015

A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Man

Just chillin' and doing a little drawing at home.

Today's artwork from school.

As Seth's teacher Mrs. D let me know, "His confidence in his ability to write is fantastic!" and you know, it's good to be confident when you're learning. I'm less confident about my ability to read Seth's sentences and I needed a little help decoding today's message. In case you do too, I've included a translation.

The crayon behind the ear was too cute. I used to tuck my pencil behind my ear another lifetime ago when I used to draw for a living – glad to see it's a family trait!

- L.

Translation: Nate, I'm "faingfo" (thankful) for you "brudr" (brother). I really miss you. "Gubi" (Goodbye).

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Picture Day

It's picture day at school and just in case everyone didn't keep their vest or bow tie on until the big moment, I took a quick photo for posterity.

- L.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Happy Thanksgiving (and a little brotherly love) from everyone at the OP!

- L.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

I Like Her Already

Yesterday my kids came home and told me their stories about school eventually. Jessica (a student) is awful, and Mrs. D (a teacher) is pretty. I don't know about Jessica one way or another. Mrs. D. is pretty though. When the son who is in her class said, "What can I do? I'm so BORED!" when he got home I suggested drawing because he likes that. I even suggested drawing his teacher. I was making dinner so I didn't discover my new favorite drawings until later. He used the pencil my new favorite teacher gave him as a welcome to school gift to draft his wares. Mrs D. is awesome. Seth is the one on the opposite end in the second drawing giving her a bit of stinkface in case you were wondering.

If there are teacher gifts at any point this is going to be a part of it. Mrs. D. is my new hero. Yell on with your bad self, Mrs. D. If this is why I had to sign all the permission forms, you have my permission.

- L.

P.S. Mrs. D. may or may not be a yeller, but she is very no-nonsense and I liked her straight away for that reason. I am glad she got the son she got because it is probably like old home week with me, except better because she is trained for this.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The First Of Many

We're back after a long absence. I couldn't not post some pictures on such an important day as this, the first day of kindergarten. The rainy walk to school was taken today. The rest I had the foresight to shoot yesterday when the weather was more agreeable.

Everyone made it to class on time, under the weight of their backpacks and lunchkits. Lots of gear on the first day!

My little boys, so grown up. Where has the time gone?

- L.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Happy St. Patrick's Day, Everyone!

We took some "traditional" photos this morning at the OP, and we'll leave you with an Irish blessing.

May your troubles be less,
And your blessings be more;
And nothing but happiness
Come through your door.

Unless it's the fighting Irish, because they are rather handsome.
The boys are always so serious when I try to get a decent pose – after awhile I wind them up and let them go:



The secret telling at the end can't be anything good, but it is very cute.
Happy St. Patrick's Day to you all from the OP!

- L.

It's also "St. Padrin's Day" over here which is a semi-traditional holiday. Anyone can be Irish for a day, according to the hat Uncle Padrin will be wearing. He also has to put on a very gaudy tie. For my part, I'll be cooking supper wearing an "Irish Princess" tiara" and sporting a green apron. Hilarity should be had by all (we might not take pictures though).