Saturday, December 20, 2014

kirby's instagram from today

These are great, Kirsten.  love, Mom

Thursday, December 18, 2014

cooky night

 We got it done, baked eight batches of sugar cookies.  Maria rolled dough and cut. I ran the oven.

 It was a fairly big mess, but we expected that and it wasn't a big deal.
 Okay, okay, okay. The first rule of cooky decorating is NO LICKING ANYTHING.

Not the bottles of sprinkles, not your fingers, nothing!  PJ!

No licking!
 Don't even ask. There was hyper-ness.

 But work also got done.
 At some point, she decided she wanted to carry a whole tray of cookies to the family room where the frosting could dry. The idea of a three year old carrying a tray of cookies with her own overly interested dog and our also overly interested dogs alongside?

Not a good idea.

Well, she got so mad she announced she wasn't decorating anymore and LEFT.

But then later, Barbies resumed downstairs, her and Aunt Julia and when it was time for bed, already a little late because of the cookies, she set up a howl.  Julia pleaded her case, "We're at the funnest part of the game right now if we could just finish that?"

"Okay, five more minutes."

The little child dried her tears so darn fast and said, "Julia, now I am happy again!" and they ran back downstairs.

Ten minutes later, she took it better in stride. Bedtime happened.

We also had a phone call from her mom in Mexico, and she did actually talk on the phone, which she often refuses to do.

Okay, now it's ten minutes into Friday, best day of the week.

Good night.   love, Val

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

more christmas to cram into one month

We're still working on the cookies.   Tomorrow we're baking sugar cookies.  Anyone who wants to be involved is welcome.

 Today was the preschool Christmas program for this guy:

 He's annoyed because that jingle bell in his hand isn't jingling.  He traded it for another one.   He was so excited about the program he could hardly contain it, kept doing a little zippy dance.

It was a great program, fun songs, cute kids.

Thanks for inviting me to your program.  I loved it.   love, Grandma, plus Tim, Julia, and pj.

Monday, December 15, 2014

another occasion or two

This morning was the preschool program. That's her in the black velvet dress in the lower right corner.  It was great.

Tonight was James and Lydia's band concert.

 That's her in the middle.
 That's him.
 Hey, I know those guys:

 This little girl was seated ahead of us and kept Julie's baby entertained.

Julie and Oly were nice enough to come all the way from South Minneapolis for the occasion, even though they had to bring an infant.
He's such a mild baby, agreeable.

He let the child play with his toes, drank half a bottle, got passed around.

 That's her second from the left, and him directly on the left below.

The concert was really nice.
They get better and better at this until they're finally, actually GOOD.

And then they go to college and never touch these instruments again.

Such a waste.  But it's mostly about lack of time.

My parents were there.   My mom and Lydia are there saying good bye.

 Oly and his grandson:

And now it's the end of Monday. Actually it's passed into Tuesday now, and I must go to bed.

What a beautiful Monday this was, in every way.


We can do it.

love you all so much, Val


Here it starts, same place it ends tonight.  Guy asleep across the bed, dog next to him.

Sunday morning was the Christmas program.  We did not participate at our old church in the city. We attended at this one much closer to home.  Tim's the tallest kid in sixth grade, last year of Sunday School.
Well, he also fainted during the program, wobbled, and then fell right over with a crash.   Jay was in the bathroom with Dan's kids and Heidi and p.j.  I ran to the front and he looked asleep, sprawled out on the rug.

Julia was shaking.  A guy rushed forward too, a medic in the army, I guess.

Nah, he just fainted.  He was pale but obviously not a code.   I shook his shoulder and talked to him for a minute and then he opened his eyes and looked so disoriented.

Church was silent for several loooong minutes. Then he was able to get up and we fled to the communion room off the altar.

Lord have mercy.
We came home for Grandpa's handmade pizzas and some time playing with the magnificent Barbie house and the Legos.

Some Scooby Doo Zombie movie played in the background.
That little curly one always wants his mother.  Well, since they left him with us today and went Christmas shopping, he sat on MY lap during church.  I got to breathe in the scent of his hair and cuddle his little ribs.

He actually talked to me.

I loved it.

That's b.g. hanging on the railing, trying to talk his cousin and brother into something different than what's happening.

He's fairly hilarious.

Snowman ice cream!

Anyway, it was a great Sunday, all in all.

love, Grandma, aka Val

Friday, December 12, 2014

a friday to remember

We headed out to t.c.'s musical program where he was costumed as a St. Bernard.  That's him by the yellow triangle in the long black ears with the brown patches on his shoulders.

He was great.  He sang, and he did all the actions with enthusiasm, and when he was supposed to howl he did it.  I could hear his voice among all the others, perfect howling.

It was a great show.  We were a few minutes late, due to a car accident on the highway going into Minneapolis, and then we got there and the parking was obscene.   But we made it and were able to enjoy well over half the performance.

These guys were also there. The curly one in the orange shirt held his hands over his ears during a lot of the show. It echoes in the gym, true.

But pizza at John and Dannell's on a foggy Friday night?  Conversation with my sons and their wives?   Watching my grandchildren run around and play and make messes and scream a lot?   Yes, absolutely.  Definitely yes.

Then Heidi told me she'd been hoping to take p.j. to see Santa.

Previously she hadn't mentioned this because we were planning to be home early to pick Sam up from the doctor, but Jay stayed home to do that and fetch Kari after school.

(Sam is great. Superficial lumps removed and sent for biopsies, but no real worry over them.  $940.  So, wow.  That's kind of expensive.

I'm not complaining about the price. Things cost. It's not cheap to rent an office and staff it and provide medical expertise and all that: I understand.  We run a business too and people turn pale when they see the plumbing bills at times.  We provide quotes in advance, and so did the animal clinic.)

 So we were free to goof around at John and Dannell's, which we did.

But we ate and headed home promptly so they could get to the mall and see the jolly fat man.  Julia went along too because it's always more fun with friends.

That's  not the most confident smile I've ever seen on p.j. but she did it, and what a great night.

Now it's the end of Friday and in fifteen minutes it will be Saturday, and that's a full day too.

I love all you crazy people so much.  Love, Grandma, aka Mom, aka VAL

Thursday, December 11, 2014

a christmas gecko

 So I texted her today and asked if this was a good day to get a Christmas Gecko.

She said yes.

It was also the only day to mix up and bake a ton of gingerbread.

I wish it were ceremonial and nice, but it wasn't.  Work called, said I was on the schedule for today.

(How is this even possible?  I have never worked a Thursday once EVER.)

I wept.

Actual, exhausted tears, shed by a woman who has worked the last nine days.

They filled the schedule without me, Praise God.

And thank Kathy, who worked double, who didn't deserve this either.

 The gingerbread was baked, and we all drove across town to shop of reptile exerts who assisted Lydia in the acquisition of Lillian.

And then the child deleted the cutest picture I've had of her in a year, her beaming at her little gecko.


I don't understand.  When I realized what had happened, I cried.

I really, honestly, truly do not get it.

So, we've got your photo of an empty tank and that's fun.

 But this is Lillian with all our good wishes for her health and well being.


Tomorrow Sam is having some old-girl thing removed from her lip, etc.

Should be a blast.

The estimate is $888, and what a festive number is that?

 Kind of like the festive number of 7:30 am when she needs to be at the vet tomorrow.

Okay, good night.  love, Val