Monday, December 31, 2012

PDX, you evoke so many emotions

Final fun evening of board games

 We got a Headbanz game for Christmas and cracked it open last night to see what it was like. It was fun. It made for many moments of frivolity. Though we stayed up too late playing it to get enough sleep before Logan, Alyssa and the kids' flight this morning. But isn't that what being on holidays is all about? Staying up late and eating too much food and having lots of adventures?

Wake up call at... too early
 They didn't have a super early flight but we did shoot to be there a couple hours before flight time to give them time to get bags checked, a bite to eat and through security without having to feel harried. We were on the road at sunrise.
 Mt Hood was hiding behind the parking garages.

Katie is most certainly a morning person. She kept up a running commentary of plans, events and observations from the time she woke up until they headed for security. I'm sure she is telling Hayden in the above picture that she is going on a plane and will be flying home to her house and will get to see Aunty Kelly, Ari and Tiia. 
 I bit of a Wendy's breakfast with a muffin for Rowan.
 Then he followed the signs to the water fountain.
 Chocolate muffins can parch a guy.
 Official parting pose
 They look exhausted before they even board the plane. 
Hope that means that they played hard and had a good time.  

We didn't run a brush through Kate's hair so Grampa took the opportunity to comb it before she headed for the gate. It was a role reversal for them.  

Breakfast with our boys

 We introduced these guys to Beaches at the airport. Har and I still think it's the best breakfast in town. Today we had brioche french toast. YUM!
Hayden, who is a very good food critic, loved it too.

We sat by the windows looking over the planes and the walkway between the terminals so we could watch for the kids.

 We saw Alyssa and Logan with Evie and motioned to ask where the other kids were.  They were coming down the moving walkway. Kate was walking so I barely got a photo before she was gone by and Logan took off to meet her on the end.

 Alyssa waited for Rowan who was leisurely riding it. She turned and started walking so he hustled and got moving too. I can't imagine all the fun they have flying with those 3 kids. At least this time she's not doing it solo!
 The tail of their jet. Aloha! enjoy your flight!
Thanks for coming!!!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lazy Sunday a.m. with Rowan, Katie and Evie

 While their mom and dad hang out with Coco and Charles we got to hang out with Rowan, Evie and Katie. Uncle Ry even got to have a little Evie time before he headed off to church. Rowan got to open up his cuddle-up-it alligator while Katie chilled with her folks' iPad.
 Sisterly shenanigans 
Unwilling snuggler. Katie trying to get Evie to pose for a picture with her. Not going to happen.

 Another try at coercing a smile. Got a grin out of it.

"Pay no attention to the girls behind the curtain." 
Kate propped the iPad on the window sill and she and Evie stayed there to watch for their parents to come back.
 Kate navigates around that iPad pretty well.
They came back!
 The double-daters returned after being out for breakfast and a bit of shopping.
 I called for a "normal" pose and got a Katie creeper in the pic.
Grampa and his hair stylin' girl
 I don't know what the fascination is but Katie loves doing Harlan's hair. She's so funny.
Aunty Coco and the cuties

It looks like Evie is actually moving those fairy wings.  I didn't have to ask twice for Katie to pose with Aunty Courtney. They are blue stripey girls today.

It was nice to have Lys and Logan spend a little time with Courtney and Charlie.
Even better for us to be able to have some Grampa and Gramma time with the three kids!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Weekend sewing and a shopping day

Double sided flannels
 Alyssa bought some of these flannels when she was visiting here this fall. With all of the quilts I was working on, these blankets got put aside to work on "later". Since Logan and Alyssa are out here on vacation, I wanted to send these back home with them in finished form. When they were gone down to his parent's house this week, I got busy and made three blankets for Evie (above) and three for Katie (below). 
Katie is such a blankie girl. She loves the feel of flannel. She's been one of the biggest fans of my sewing projects. 
Shopping in the comfort of home
 Alyssa and Courtney were looking through the many pairs of beautiful earrings that Krystle's friend has made. They are really pretty. Did you know that a CD makes an ideal hand mirror?
 Charles did not get any earrings. I don't think they go with an Army National Guard uniform too well.

Lunch & Shopping with A and E
 While Harlan and Logan stayed home to install my new dishwasher that was delivered today, Alyssa, Evie and I went out for an early lunch and then off to spend Alyssa's Macy's gift certificate!
First stop was AppleBee's.

Evie napped for a good bit of the time that we were at Lloyd Center. But we shopped for close to 4 hours so, she did need a little entertaining while her mom tried things on or purchased them. It helped to have her munch on a Wetzel's pretzel. All in all she was a good shopping partner.

An after Christmas purchase
Macy's had all of their holiday decor priced at 75% off of retail. I picked up a few gingerbread ornaments and this crystal mistletoe ball. Lyssa and Logan already tried it out :0)
 It's going to be a nice addition to our decorations hanging between the living and dining rooms for many years to come.
I think I have a date with someone under it on New Years Eve!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas quilts revealed

Henry and Anabelle have new quilts

 I didn't take photos of the finished quilts but did take a picture of each of them before I snipped and washed them. They are somewhat co-ordinating but not matching. They were designed to cover their twin sized bunk beds and are lighter weight than the flannel ones that I've made. Perfect for California dreamers :0)

 Cherise took a picture of Henry checking out the quilt rolls that finally arrived in time for Christmas.
We are family.... 
I've got my sisters and Mom covered
 I posted a picture of the fabric that I bought to make myself a quilt a few weeks ago. The more I looked at that fabric the more I realized I wanted my sisters and Mom to have quilts with the same fabrics. I didn't want them identical but tied together with two common fabrics. Mine is actually identical to Kara's on top but we have different backing fabrics. Mom's is the one with green squares, Kelly's has the tropical turquoise and Kara and I have the grey on gray tones. 
Each of the gals said that they "loved" them. I'm so glad!
Another loverly Christmas quilt
 This fun quilt was commissioned by Courtney for her mother-in-law's Christmas gift. Courts chose the fabrics and I sewed them up for her. It turned out just darling. I love the dark green backing flannel outlining each square. Joanne also said she loved her new lap quilt.

Treasured moments with the grands
 Evie climbed up on my lap long enough on Christmas morning for me to help her open this doll and then she was off and running again. She's grown so much more independent since she started walking a little over 6 weeks ago. She's a busy girl.

Keepsake ornament
We have had an upright piano very like this one for over 29 years. We are talking about having it move on from our home to someone else's. No one here plays it anymore since Harlan got his keyboard.

Today when Harlan and I were at the mall I went into Hallmark to look at the clearance ornaments and found this one. I figured if we get brave enough to actually get rid of our piano in 2013, we will have this ornament to remember it by... complete with a red hymnal on the top! It is musical and plays "Go Tell It On The Mountain"in a tempo way different than was played in either of the Apostolic Lutheran congregations that we grew up in, but I love it!

Keepsake ornaments are awesome!
And this one will take up a lot less room than the real thing.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Day 2012

Family stocking opening
 Each of the families opened stockings separately from one another. J & J were down in the family room with their bunch and L & L were in the den with their three. Our 4 joined us in the living room to open theirs. It's not in keeping with tradition but I think it worked out pretty well. 
Another tradition broken or
rather modified

Years and years ago, my dad sent some money to us for Christmas. He said it wasn't enough to buy everyone a present but suggested that we go out to eat or something. So we did... and it started our tradition of having a Christmas breakfast at a restaurant. 
All of us, together. 
This year we opened stockings and left all the other presents under the tree and went out to eat. There were nineteen of us this Christmas morning. 
Gar-bear looked rather dapper in his plaid button up.
 These two oldest boy cousins love, love, love playing together. They look so grown up in their stripey sweaters.
Aunties and uncles and their girls
 Aunty Krystle with Danika, Uncle Charles with Evelyn, and Katelyn first with  Aunty Coco and then Aunty Joylynn.

We had the whole atrium at Shari's to ourselves so we could walk around and visit with each other. The kids didn't have to worry about interrupting anyones' meals by being passed from one aunty or uncle to another.

So Happy Together... 

I know Logan and Alyssa were here last year for Christmas but it's been a long year for them so it's especially nice to have them here for Christmas again this year. They are starting into a time of settling into the DC area for a few years. Perhaps one of these years we'll be enjoying a Capitol Christmas!

Hayden and Cameron wore their new ties to breakfast, without the benefits of collared shirts. Perhaps they're setting a new trend. 

Genevieve is at the end of a bout with chicken pox. I'm so happy that she was feeling up to being out with us and that we had the private seating area for out gang. She was so sweet about not sharing germs. It helped that she got her own pot of tea to enjoy.

Back at home
 We attempted to get a decent picture of the 7 cousins together. This is about as good as it got. Alyssa might have a better one on her camera but I doubt it. They are pretty squirrely.
 The adults got busy handing out presents. It didn't take long to get down to the bottom of the pile and I think everyone was happy with their gifts.
I know three young men that were very happy
 Garrett got a toy gun and marshall's badge.
 Rowan and Wyatt got Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles gear and weapons.
They are looking forward to an epic play battle.

Heading out of town

Evy and Katie seemed ready to nap on the way down to Logan's folks place.  Rowan had a hard time leaving Wyatt here today when they took off for Sisters and a visit with his Gremmy and Goddy. Not that he doesn't love being out at the ranch but he was disappointed to have to put his play with his cousin on hold. 
But there was the promise of snow down there and they were packed and ready for it. They are using Logan's Mum's van with studded tires so the road conditions aren't really a concern.
They made good time on the drive and were already visiting and making merry when I checked to see if they'd arrived safe and sound.
Have a wonderful time guys! Take pictures of the snow for me.
It's one aspect of Christmas that I miss from my childhood in Michigan.