Monday, January 10, 2011


Christmas Morning... the anticipation, the "did he come, did he come?," the "did he eat the cookies?," all the excitement, all the thrill... and Matthew makes them sit on the step as he's downstairs getting the cameras ready and rolling.  So funny!  It takes the girls every ounce of self-control to hold themselves there until he gives the go ahead.  He likes to situate himself so he can see each girl's face as they run from the stairs to the tree.  Here are some highlights of the morning.

 Yes, that is the Tangled Art Set... huge hit, as you can see!

-this child cracks me up with her facial expressions
 You see this vanity... she didn't move from it the moment she saw it.  She sat there the whole time.  She said she didn't want any presents, didn't like them... only liked her vanity.  She got up for 5 seconds because she saw a couple of dollar bills.  Ran to them, took them... and plopped back in her vanity.  Matthew laughed and said she's just like her mother :)
 She did like this little texter, although she still didn't get up for it.  I think Matthew actually had to unwrap it for her.
 Notice her legs crossed.  HAHA, she's such a little stink!
 She did end up moving for the Tangled doll.
-this truly captures her: happy, content, loving life.

 Christmas morning, off to the buffet with Yaya and Papa!  Gotta say, love enjoying the day with no dishes to make or clean up!
 Afterwards, we went to Yaya and Papa's house for Christmas #2.
This next picture is funny.
 Kloey and my dad have the same shaped head.  There's a story.....
A few days after Kloey was born, I began getting nervous about her head shape.  Call me crazy, call me hormonal, I was on heavy meds... but then out of no where Matthew said to me, "do you think her head is shaped oddly?!"  Well if he notices it, then something is wrong FOR REAL!  Nothing was wrong, I remember crying and getting all upset.  My mom came over and she was like, "Nicole!  Chill out.  You need to calm down. (I'd been going through a patch where I was petrified about everything, probably because of all the stress and difficulties with Kloey's pregnancy and birth.)  My mom says, "She's got Daddy's head."  Lo and behold, look... they've got the same head.  Looking at it from the side, it's a smushed football.  (Dr said her head is fine.)  My dad says it has to be that way to contain all the brains.
AND, that was Christmas in a nutshell.
2011 is going to be a great year.  We're hoping for some fun changes with life, obviously with the girls growing and maturing and entering new phases of their life.  Matthew will begin his Masters Program, and he's got some possibilites of different things at his finger tips at work... he may dabble in and is kinda excited about the prospect of that.  We've got hopeful economic plans with paying our home off significantly earlier than the loan term- thus avoiding a whole lot of interest and saving some money in the long run.  As always, I've stocked our home with an incredible food and home storage, probably never needing to buy diapers, formula, and wipes ever again... as well as every tolietry you can imagine from toothpaste to hair spray.  Planning on building out our kitchen, tearing down a wall- eliminating the 6th bedroom (who needs SIX bedrooms anyways!!!) to make a monsterous, enormous kitchen.  Hopefully that wall isn't too important... I guess we'll see.  We're interviewing contractors and coming up with ideas.  Keeping an "eating healthy" plan.  I enjoy maintaining a size 4 after 4 kids... it's do-able.  It can be done, eating healthy is actually quite fun because I get to eat alot and introduce my girls to new foods.  I'm amazed when I see my 2 year old enjoying cucumber, and my 4 year old eating black beans.  I've found an amazing food store with such great food, no preservatives and yucky stuff put inside... but REAL ingredients... the family has no clue I've insituted the change... which is even better that they haven't noticed :)
My New Years Resolution is to SIMPLIFY.  I do alot, have a lot of things I'm involved in with the girls- and that can't change- I enjoy it too much.  But I feel like our lives can get filled with clutter (literally and metaphorically) and I'm going to get rid of that clutter (literally and metaphorically) and SIMPLIFY.  Less STUFF, more QUALITY, more things that really matter... in every aspect of our life.


Christmas Eve starts some fun traditions in our house... we always start the baking for us!  Usually, we've done some crazy baking all month long... but that's for friends and for school staff and teachers.  Christmas Eve means yummies for us!  So as you can see, Matthew headed up the baking of the cookies.  And yes, that's Kloey's bassinette behind him.  (?)  Not sure why he strolled her in there, I guess to be a part of the fun (?)
 The girls got to decorate all their cookies with fabulous teeny tiny toppings that Mommy had to go on her hands and knees to pick up every last one because more found their way to the ground then on the cookies!
 Round 1 of our finished products.
 He had a system of going in and out of the oven, the decoration timing, the cooling timing... I just took pictures.  And I managed to eat about 2 dozen myself! :)
 We always go to the movies on Christmas Eve, an early movie.  So given Kloey's really young, I gladly stayed home all by myself with her.  Poor me, HAHAHAHA- peace and quiet... actually I took on some last minute shopping- grocery, couponing, and gift shopping.  Matthew took the oldest 3 to see Tangled again.  Definitely my most favorite Disney movie, can't wait until it comes out on dvd!  And, the evening was also filled with the ever festive meal... of Chinese food!  We've done it every year we've been married... nothing like some Orange Chicken, Beef n Broccoli, and Fried Rice to bring on the Holidays!!!!
 Although, I did prepare with my homemade rolls rising throughout the day.  Kylie loves them!
 And I did prepare a ham in the crockpot for Christmas Day... too bad we went to the Aliante Casino buffet for Christmas Brunch... and we were way to stuffed to touch my ham.  But it made for good leftovers with the rolls.
We ended our evening with a fun late night movie, another tradition we'll keep up, as it was a really cute movie.  Yummy popcorn and candy keeps little girls pleasantly amused as the time ticks for Santa to come!
And... drum roll please.... this is what our house looked late late on Christmas Eve!  Insane.  Ever year, we say we aren't going to over do it.  And I didn't, in terms of money spent.  (?)  But every year, that doesn't happen.  Lots of presents, lots of toys that travel to the abyss of the toy room... always wondering if our kids understood that it's better to give than to receive.  As there was giving done by our family, I wonder how much the girls got out of it.  Maybe they're still too young.  However, next year we are implementing some new plans...
Given we have 4 children, so there's 4 times as many gifts as say for an only child.  We still noticed the highs and lows of the gift indulgence, and maybe they are too young to understand but I'd rather nip it in the bud right now.  The thrill of the new toys also brought the bitter greed of not sharing and nasty attitudes.  The toys sat around the family room, so many things not only from Santa but from us and family, many things from last year going out to the donation box in spring cleaning... if not some things from this Christmas also.  Next year, as with my resolution of SIMPLFYing and doing less overall but only keeping the "quality" things... this will spill over into Christmas giving for the girls as we've asked family members to do for us.  Less is more in so many ways.  Having a couple of things that YOU LOVE and are so excited about is so much better than a lot of stuff.  Not to be a downer, but we realized a huge Christmas in a picture doesn't mean a good Christmas.  A good Christmas comes by what we do leading up to it, and the traditions and fun things we do as a family.  The commericalism wrecks it, and I saw the green little monsters coming out in my little preciousnesses.  Toys get broken, toys get faught over, many toys get left unused because something better came along.  That's not what I'm trying to teach my girls, but I think inadvertantly that is what we're teaching our girls.  Not that it's our fault, I think everyone to a degree does it.  But we need to declutter our life.  So we're instituting a change here and now!!!  Quality over quantity  in so many aspects of our life which we are very excited about!  You know that feeling when you look at something and it's a mess and you have no clue what's in there, or where to start, or if it's important, if you like it or if you don't (for us an example is our bedroom closet)... and you know that feeling of go through it all, cleaning it, organizing it so that a stranger could walk in and know exactly where everything is... that's what I'm going for!!!!  OCD, maybe... but that's definitely  me.  And it's going to be great!

Technical Difficulites

We are back after some technical difficulties!  Somehow we lost the username and password to get onto the blog.  And by WE, I mean Matthew.  While I'm the one who does the blog, somehow I got logged out and had to log in.  Well, give me a few months and I totally forgot what it was.  Between his 5 different email accounts, and who knows what passwords we have between us... I FINALLY FOUND IT, and we are up and running again.  And I saved the info, so we will not be lost again!
With that said, I do not want to post Christmas pictures... UGH, so many... but I will, hopefully even later on today after lunch, during naptime.  I'm caught up on my PTA Treasury stuff, my laundry, my ironing, my food storage, my couponing, the rotation and donation of all my girls' shoes, AND my primary stuff!!!  I'm anticipating some major girl scout stuff happening in the near future as somehow I became Treasurer of the Troop (luv ya Missy!).  So if I don't get the Christmas pictures up, it may be Christmas when I find the time again!!!
On that note, this is Kylie's Brownie Troop... as they were going off Christmas Caroling a few weeks ago.  And now, she's selling Girl Scout Cookies....

So I'm offering that if any extended family/friends would like to support her and buy cookies from her ($4 a box... outrageous, I know... I sold them for $2.25 way back in the day), I will gladly ship them... as long as you don't buy like 20 boxes and it's ridiculous for me to ship.  :)
There are Thin Mints, Chocolate Peanut Butter (tagalongs), Carmel Delights (samoas), Shortbread, Shortbread with chocolate on one side, Lemonades, and some belgian type cookie... I think almost ginger snap-ish.  
**So if you want some just leave me a comment with your info, I won't publish it and we'll go from there.  Or you can just email me directly.