Just a few snaps of these two from last week…
I was so excited that I got to stay home with the kiddos for one more day! The kiddo’s school was closed and the roads were too icy for my hour commute. That didn’t keep the little ones inside though and they had a blast playing in the yard! Airlie didn’t even bother to put on her snow pants, just her long underwear. She is one tough cookie in this cold weather!
These two were super silly trying to get their tongues stuck on the icy chair. Lucky for them, no tongues ever got stuck!They played and pretended for a good chunk of the morning outside. They made “ice soup” in our garden planters and “sandwiches” made out of ice chunks.They slipped and giggled through ice-skating, ice-yoga and ice-dancing. Even Kaya was outside enjoying the chill of winter.
We warmed up by the fire and then took a slippery walk up the hill to our neighbor’s house for an afternoon playdate. Other than that-just hung out with these two goofballs. Tonight, they were both in bed before 7pm. Tomorrow, it’s back to school and work, but they have filled my heart with smiles (and exhaustion!). I hope their minds have happy memories we created that radiate smiles and warmth whenever we’re apart.
The kiddos loved visiting the snow lately, but Airlie kept telling us that she really wanted it to snow at her house. Well, this morning, she got her wish. We woke up to a dusting of flurries and the kids were beyond excited!
Little did we know, the snow would continue and we’d get to go sledding right on our street! So, after a big breakfast we put on our warm gear and headed outside with our neighbors.
Our street is pretty hilly so it was a long, fast way down. Lucky for them, they usually got a lift on the way back up. Here is some video of their rides:
The kiddos were just so excited and it was awesome having their favorite neighborhood friends, Elise and Nolan, as well as other kiddos, to join them! After some sledding, the kiddos had some special treats and warmed up inside. But, just before dark they wanted to go back out on our hill. Tonight, we are due for more “winter mix”, so I’ll working working at home tomorrow to avoid the icy roads on my commute. It is also likely these little ones will not have school. I think another fun day playing with the neighbors in the snow is in our future!
On New Year’s Eve, we headed back up the mountain for more sledding. It looked a bit different that the first run a week earlier. The sun was shining so we could see the peaks, but also the snow was more packed down from the crowds. The kiddos still had a blast-especially Airlie. Brycen isn’t quite as into the cold weather sports yet, but hopefully by the end of the season he will just as stoked as Airlie is. That little chica doesn’t seem to have any fear and just endless spunk to keep her warm. Yesterday, she managed to ride her sled down the hill and straight into a 5′ hole! Someone dug it out of the 10+’ of snow, complete with tunnels to other little holes. We feared she was hurt (which she could’ve been), but all Jay heard when he went to check on her was laughter from her crawling out of it. Then, she barreled down the hill and even hit air on one run (see the video below!). Brycen was ready to bail for the car way before she was and I think a better pair of gloves will make him happier next time too. Now, if just realized the more he moved up and down the hill, the warmer he’d be too!
Even Jay and Uncle Ian had fun going down the hills…
Brycen started to get tired, but we trekked up a little farther for a bigger hill for the “big boys”. Jay was pulling Brycen in the sled, when the poor little guy fell asleep on the ride!
After a couple of hours of playing in the snow, we hiked back to the truck. Well, Airlie got a ride from Uncle Ian. Jay carried Brycen the whole way because little bear was just exhausted. Too much cold and excitement for one day (he passed within minutes of driving away from the parking lot and of course, woke up later asking for food!). This place is so beautiful! You have a breathtaking view of the mountain, sledding down a glacier and looking down at a frozen river surrounded by snow. Picture perfect winter wonderland.
And here is the video of Airlie shredding down the hill on her sled. She got air and didn’t even flinch! I think I need to bring her helmet with us!
Oh the joys of being 3 and 5, waking up at 5:15am (which is their “normal”), ready for Santa. Luckily, I told them they needed to wait a little bit to make sure Santa wasn’t still in the chimney. I think we started to open presents around 6am or so! After the initial awe of seeing all the gifts under the tree, Airlie opened her gifts pretty quickly and then settled in to choosing which to play with. While Brycen on the other hand, took his time. He’d open one, play with it for a bit (or put the Legos together) and then open another. I think he opened his final gift around 10:30!
I took some video in the morning, so here is a little peek. All they really asked for was Legos this Christmas, so I love how after playing with the fire truck for a few minutes, Brycen was like, “okay, where are my Legos”?
We played all morning and then Uncle Ian came over to hang with us for the day! He helped the kids with more Lego building and read some new books. After some coaxing, the kids left their toys and we headed to the park for some scooter riding.
Once we got home, Brycen couldn’t wait to take a bath to play with his new ferry boat, which he told me was headed to NJ. Airlie sat on my lap for a bit and watched him play…and we took a few selfies.
After watching the Grinch, eating some dinner (and more sugar cookies) and playing with toys, they both passed out around 8:30…full day since 5:15am and no naps.
My heart is always full with these littles. Living life through their innocent eyes opens up a whole new world of beauty, patience and adventure. I still can’t believe they are 3 and 5 years old. Where did the time go? It seems like yesterday we just had Airlie celebrate her first Christmas. I want to keep this time magical as long as I possibly can. Sometimes it feels like time is slipping through my hands, but then I realize if I just keep present with them-I am not losing time but I am experiencing it. One day, I’ll get this blog into a book for them and hope when they read my words, their hearts will be full too.
We missed family and friends but the kiddos kept our house full of love, light and lots of excitement and noise! Merry Christmas!
The morning of Christmas Eve, we made our sugar cookies for Santa and then headed over to visit him while they cooled off. We thought no one would be waiting in line for him on Christmas Eve, but we still had to stand in the rain for just under an hour. Those kiddos are true Oregonians because it was cold and they didn’t seem to mind at all. As soon as we got into Santa’s cottage, they took off their coats and got cozy.
Here is a little video I tried to capture of their visit (in between stopping to put Brycen on his lap and Santa asking approval for giving candy canes). But the pic came out cute!
After our visit with Santa, the cookies were cooled and ready for decorating. I made frosting, which usually I don’t have luck with, but I have to say, I was quite happy! I used natural dyes made with beet/turmeric for the red and spirulina for the green (which to me, was better than the overdose of Red #40 this time of year). The littles loved to decorate and make their beautiful creations. We even shared some sugar love with our neighbors.
I hadn’t wrapped a single present, so as soon as the kids got Santa his cookies, the reindeer some carrots (even though Brycen took some bites) and they wrote a thank you to the man in red, I was a wrapping machine. I was very appreciative of all the gifts are families had sent, which helped make the kiddo’s Christmas special.
The day before Christmas Eve, we headed up to Mt. Hood for some snow. We found a great sno-park for kids on a glacier that had a perfect sized hill. It’s crazy how in about an hour, we can drive to blizzard conditions from the rain-soaked valley. We had to pull over so Jay could put chains on the tires. The kids were stoked to head in the snow again and were so excited to look at the trees being covered in it. Once we got to the sno-park, we got the kiddos bundled up and hiked up to the hill. Kaya was super excited and follow Jay down the hill once, but after awhile Kaya, Jay and Brycen headed back to the truck. Airlie was still trekking up and down but then it started to blizzard hard. Airlie is one determined and fearless little chica in the snow. We had so much fun and I can’t wait to go back again!
And that is a face that was ready to head back to the warm car!
Here is some video of the snow, and Airlie singing my favorite “hidden verse” of Rudolph. They sing this constantly when I play it in the car, but I hope to get it all on video before the holidays are over.