Thursday, December 31, 2015

Annie

I took my girls to see Annie last night! It was a Christmas present for the three of us. We had fabulous seats and really loved the show! I could easily picture Gianna up there performing with the professional cast...she would be fabulous!



Cute Selfies

I found these selfies on Julia's phone. She had just curled her hair with her new curling wand...




She's really growing up! 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Merry Christmas

We had a very Merry Christmas here...


We went to Kimmy's early afternoon on Christmas Eve and opened a few presents and had some delicious food...



We broke a record around here for the warmest temperatures for a Christmas Eve...it was a balmy 70 degrees!!  Crazy but beautiful!! Kind of like my Julia...


The kids played outside for a while with no jackets on...in December...in the Northeast...









Then we came home and did our traditional Christmas Eve. We went to church...and then the kids opened their presents from each other and we opened their presents to us.  I took each of them out separately to shop for each other and their Dad. It was so cute watching them pick out presents for each other.  They bought things like gum, candy canes, tic tacs and marshmallow peeps. So cute...


Gianna gave candy to her Daddy. Yes, more candy!! You can tell what we like around here...



Nicholas bought me this gorgeous pillow! I love it!!


And the girls bought me this adorable picture! An owl of course. Only owls will do for this Mama...


Then the littles made their cookies for Santa...


and homemade reindeer food...


Notice the slider is open??  It was soooo warm out!!!



Then we made some yummy hot chocolate (even though it was still about 70 degrees) with my new Breville Hot Chocolate Frother. I love it!!!


We put the cookies, milk and carrots by the fireplace for Santa...


Oh my heart...


and then we all snuggled up on the couch to watch the Polar Express! What a wonderful tradition...



The kids all ran upstairs right after the movie to go sleep so morning would come quick...but Gianna had some trouble sleeping and woke us up at 4:45. Ugh! She did end up going back to bed for a while thank goodness...


Santa was very good to us once again this year...



There were quite a few extra large boxes too which is always very exciting...


My favorite part...making them wait...and wait...on the stairs...it really helps build the excitement...



My silly kitty cat...making himself at home in my brand new Vera Bradley bag...


Nicholas scored big with his own TV!


Gianna loves all her new toys...



and Julia loves her new curling wand...


And I'm taking the girls to see Annie!! Yay!! 


I love how happy Julia is to receive these simple gifts. She's always so appreciative...


Nicholas and his new TV...so cute...


Then my family came over in the afternoon for more delicious homemade food by my master chef Daniel. He made his incredible eggplant parmigiana with homemade sauce and meatballs.  And of course his homemade Italian cookies and fudge. 

My silly Mama...


My silly kids...


It was a wonderful Christmas. I'm feeling very blessed and very grateful.  

My favorite young dancer...

well...my other favorite besides my two girls. I first saw Kayla Mak when she was just 8 or 9 years old. She's 12 now and I think she's pretty amazing...


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

School Pictures

Nicholas 8th grade ...


Things I want to remember about Nicholas at this age:

  • Even at 14, he still loves to snuggle with his Mama and he still tells me many times each day that he loves me. 
  • He is at the age where unfortunately he is very plugged in...and it's hard to unplug him.
  • But the good thing about him being so attached to his electronics is the ability to hold them hostage when he has bad grades...or bad behavior. 
  • His passion right now is making hockey videos for his hockey Instagram account.
  • His other passion is to annoy his sisters...constantly. He has yet to learn to keep his hands...and his comments...to himself. It can be exhausting.
  • He is very smart and when he chooses to apply himself in school he does really well.
  • He lowers his voice when talking on the phone and when speaking to adults in person. It's very cute. And he loves it when people notice how tall he is getting. I swear he has literally tripled in size over this past year. It's strange looking eye to eye with him now...and it makes me a little sad sometimes too. 
  • He is very responsible. At 14 he already has a job which he never complains about going to and he is always on time for everything. 
  • He is very self sufficient. 
  • I love that when I ask him to do something, 99% of the time he will say "OK" and just does it. 
  • He pretends he doesn't think Julia is funny but I always see him turn his head away from her and smile.
  • I told him he can't have a girlfriend until he's 16...and strangely I think he's actually listening to me. 
  • I'm so proud of the young man he is becoming. 


Julia 7th grade...


Things I want to remember about my Julia at this age...

  • She is funny...I mean really really funny. She makes me laugh all the time!
  • She is really good natured and almost always in a good mood.
  • She is the queen of making the "ugly face".  She goes from beautiful to atrocious in a matter of a second.  It's hilarious!!
  • She is super artistic. She's an amazing dancer, singer and artist.
  • She is super creative. She can make just about any craft imaginable. 
  • She is always in tune with her Mama. She knows me the best.
  • She loves her big brother and wants nothing more than him to love her back...which he does but acts like he doesn't.
  • She is super sweet and is a good friend to all. And because of that, she has lots and lots of friends. She has chosen them well.
  • She is a very young 13 year old. She's not boy crazy...yet...and she doesn't wear make up or act older than she is. Thank goodness!
  • I love her self confidence. She really likes herself and is happy with her appearance.
  • I love how she chooses her outfits so carefully and how she does her hair.
  • She talks about being either a teacher or an interior designer when she grows up. I could see her doing both and being very successful.
  • She is a really nice girl. I know that sounds very simple but it's true. 
  • I'm super proud to be her Mom and so incredibly grateful she is my daughter.


Gianna 5th grade...


Things I want to remember about Gianna at this age...

  • She has tremendous compassion for all animals.
  • She is still begging for a dog.
  • She loves dance so much and works incredibly hard at it.
  • She loves to eat but hates going out to dinner. 
  • Her teachers at school love her and tell us what a wonderful girl she is.
  • She has a quick temper...especially with her siblings.
  • She won't sleep in her room at night if Julia isn't home (which is practically every Saturday night due to sleepovers).
  • She has quite the imagination. 
  • She believes her toys are alive.
  • She still loves to watch cartoons like Doc McStuffins and Paw Patrol. So cute.
  • She talks incessantly from the time she rolls out of bed in the morning until the time her head hits the pillow at night...at top volume too!  She is loud! We often have to tell her to stop talking so she can finish her homework or get ready to leave the house. She loves to retell episodes of TV shows or commercials or things that happened at school.
  • She loves to read. Her favorite books are "Saving Mr. Terupt" and the Doll People series. 
  • She talks about going on a mission to Mexico when she's older to help build houses for the needy. How awesome is that. 
  • She is a fabulous writer. You can hear her "voice" when she writes which isn't easy to do.
  • She is so afraid of getting hurt that it really holds her back sometimes. I'm not sure where that fear comes from but it is very real.  
  • She still has never learned how to ride a bike. 
  • She is a strong tumbler but is too afraid to do it anymore.
  • She always tells me how much she loves her friends at dance and all the kids at school. She makes friends very easily. 
  • She dresses like a tomboy...t-shirts, black "stick pants" (leggings), sneakers and a baggy sweatshirt...every...single...day. 
  • I wish I could keep her little forever. I can't believe this is her last year of elementary school.  She's my baby and I love her so much. 

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Counting down to Santa...


Two more days 'till Santa comes...and I'm still waiting on some gifts to be shipped to me and I still have presents to wrap! Yikes! I'm usually way more efficient than this!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Ugly Sweater Contest

Julia had a Christmas party this past weekend and she had to wear an "ugly sweater".  She is so darn creative.  She decorated this sweater all by herself and even won 3rd prize for it! 


She had fairy lights on it too but unfortunately they didn't work the night of the party...