Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye, 2007

It's been a really good year for us... in a way, I'm sad to see it go.

From this (Jan 4):And then this (April 10):To this (Dec 23):And this (Dec 26):...I have a lot to be grateful for, and very little to complain about. :) We have lots of adventures in store for 2008 though... so bring it on!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Miscellaneous photos from the Robinson get together

If I don't just post a whack of them like this now, they'll never get shared. In backwards order of our day - I am feeling too lazy right now to fix it.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Gift recap 2007

Most practical gift: the fleecy sleeper Aunty Katrina gave Mallory. She wore her pajamas home from Stratford and when we took her car seat out of the car, we discovered that she'd puked all over herself sometime during the trip. It was so nice to have some brand spanking new pajamas to get her into on the spot! And luckily, she didn't christen them, too.
The kids' gifts that make mom jealous: Liam got a digital camera of his very own (the Fisher Price model) - and you know I will have more to say about that soon! - and Mallory got a red-headed, brown-eyed Cabbage Patch Kid, both from Uncle Darin and Aunty Jenn. It was cool to have a Cabbage Patch Kid that looked like you when I was a kid, so I'm happy for her. :)The one that got away: Mallory got the 'Sophie the Giraffe' squeaky toy (the one that's been churned out by the hundreds of thousands in France for the past 40 years) from Gramma and Grampa. And we left it in Stratford, right when I think she might be going through another round of teething. Duh.Biggest gift horner-inner: without a doubt, Liam. There's the shopping cart issue. He has also taken control of the dollhouse, for which Mallory received several dolls and pieces of furniture in her stocking ("No, Mallory, the dad is still changing the baby's diaper! Leave him alone!") He ate most of the Kernels popcorn that Santa left in Chad's stocking, and when I was unable to start unwrapping his gift to me the minute he brought it over, he popped open the gift bag himself and said, "We got you some slippers." And then went to find something else from under the tree to open. Another something without his name on it.Gift trifecta: the shopping cart from GG, toy cash register from Cousin Henry and kitchen from Gramma and Grampa Cook... it's like we've got 90% of the food chain in our house. Now all we need is to add some farm equipment (and perhaps a slaughterhouse?) to teach our kids how food gets on the table. Liam is doing a stellar job of keeping us all well-fed, though he is a little disconcerted that his kitchen didn't come with a dishwasher (it does have a fridge, stove, sink, microwave, and phone). Buck up, kiddo - I didn't have a dishwasher until I was 26.I'm sure there's a lot more to say, but it's escaping me right now... I do still plan to do a 2007 gift summary - I think that will be fun to look back on. Right now though I am still struggling with a few computer issues. Liking the Mac so far, but still trying to decipher its language. And dealing with some non-Mac technical issues as well, like, I was totally unaware that Blogger has a photo upload limit - and I've just hit 31% of mine. Thinking that, in order to share my photo overload from the past few weeks, I might need to turn to Flickr instead.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas past

So much buildup and then poof... it's over so quickly! We had a wonderful Christmas. Liam was so excited about everything, which made it soooo fun for us. Mallory had no idea what was going on, of course, but she just tries to copy everything Liam does, making it doubly hilarious. She has no idea why she's opening a stocking in one of the photos above, but she's doing it right alongside Liam like it makes total sense to her. Love that! I will have to do a gift recap soon while it's all still fresh. I am starting to lose the details already and I know I'm not the only one. Today Liam was walking around saying, "Where's my stuff?" And when I asked him what stuff he meant, he said, "The stuff that Santa brought!" I had to remind him that we have started putting it all away and that some is now in his bedroom, some in the playroom, some in the basement, etc.

I have much more to post from the entire week's events but it might take me a few days. It seems that every time I tell Santa that I don't need a big Christmas, he outdoes himself. This year my over the top, very much a surprise gift was a new iMac. Yep... after being a lifelong PC girl, from the age of 8 or so when I got my first Commodore 64... I am crossing over to the Mac dark side! It's going to take a couple months to get all set up, transfer files over and be sure I can do everything I need to do. But I think the media-friendly machine of the future is the way to go... especially for people like me who spend 95% of their computer time on creative endeavours. In the meantime I still have my XHD hooked up to the old machine and Photoshop is still there as well... so there is some back-and-forth going on, some plugging and unplugging of internet and USB cables to get it all done. I've already put a hold on a copy of a Mac switchover guide at the library - there is going to be some learning curve involved. Love all the cool little features that will make it all worthwhile though. The Photobooth feature (with which I took the photo of Liam and I on Christmas day) - how fun is that?

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Any guesses as to what Santa brought?

Monday, December 24, 2007

We're ready

Magic Reindeer Food applied to front lawn, front porch and back lawn - he's not leaving anything to chance.Eggnog drunk.Cookies and milk left out for Santa; Mallory fended off from stealing them.Seasonal bedtime story read.

Into bed - lights out - ready for tomorrow.

Wishing you all a vomit-free Christmas!...

...and hoping for the same. Mallory had a good day on Saturday but started throwing up again yesterday, so we'll see how it goes... she's still pretty cheerful though - gotta be thankful for that.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Shortly before she projectile vomited at the dining room table, ruining Cory's birthday dinner and possibly his area rug, too

Yes, The Sick has come back, and this time it's come after Small Fry. In a 2 hour period she must have thrown up at least a dozen times: in Cory and Megan's dining room, in their kitchen, in their sink, all over Megan, on Audrey's old pajamas that Megan is (was?) keeping for sentimental reasons, in our car, in our kitchen, on her change table, on me... poor little thing. She's so pathetic right now, it hurts.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Does he look a little green around the gills in these pictures?

Because about an hour later, he started puking his guts out. First on our bed. Then on our bedroom floor. And then in his own bed - and he didn't even call me in the night to come clean it up for him. Just found him lying in it this morning. Ewwwwwww.

He hasn't thrown up since then, so I hope The Sick has moved on and found another family to torment. We spent the better part of the morning cleaning up all of our cleanup gear from last night and carting more loads of laundry than you can imagine up and down the stairs (not the best thing to be doing with an ankle that is a motley range of purple).

Thankfully, Mallory decided to cut me a break and slept through the night last night - hallelujah! Cue the angel choir! (Remains to be seen whether she'll repeat her performance anytime soon.) And, at least all this is happening this week, and (hopefully) not next, when we are in full-out revelry mode. In fact, we're lucky it didn't happen just 24 hours later. We have full social calendars for the next three days and after our last party plans were ruined, I sure hope these ones come to pass.

I still have to get out and run a few last minute errands. Still haven't decided what to do about that secret Santa gift and would you believe I am just now getting around to ordering a little something for someone, something that has no hope, I'm sure, of arriving before 2008? It's amazing how time gets away from you when you're at home and don't see the calendar pages flipping by. Ah well - better late than never, right? And who says you can't give gifts to celebrate New Year's, too?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Yesterday was the start of the Christmas frenzy in our house. Both kids got three presents: the one from the company Christmas party that was cancelled on Sunday, one from GG Roberts (Liam's came on Monday) and one from Cindy, who was sweet enough to buy for Mallory as well as Liam, even though she is not even officially in her care yet. The company's presents, some Little Tikes stuff, were decent enough, and Cindy gave us lots of books which are always a hit. But the real piece de resistance in this has been the gift from GG. And I don't mean Liam's gift. Yes, he likes his dump truck well enough. But from the moment Mallory's gift - a toy shopping cart full of plastic groceries - came in the door, Liam hasn't been able to keep his hands off of it.

I have been meaning to detail what the kids are getting for Christmas to record it for posterity. I will get to that eventually, but for now it's enough to say two things. Number one - Liam's big Christmas wish this year was a toy kitchen, and more than ever now I can't wait until Gramma and Grampa unveil it to him - I think he's going to go nuts. He just loves imitating mundane grown-up stuff like grocery shopping and (as we're about to find out) cooking. Number two - we are keeping things relatively small, since the kids themselves are small and don't need or want a lot of things. Both kids are getting two presents from Santa and two presents from Mom and Dad.

And yet this is what we found Liam doing this morning: Can you guess what he's doing? Congratulations if you figured out that he is pretending that the Christmas tree that the Santa figure on our coffee table is holding is actually a supermarket check-out scanner. He fills the cart with groceries, wheels them into the living room, unloads them all onto the coffee table-slash-conveyor belt, and then scans them on the Santa (what he terms 'paying for them') before reloading them into his cart.

A couple of months ago I saw a toy cash register and even Kaboodled it, thinking Liam would like to have it and that it would make a great Christmas present. We wound up getting him other things but now that I see him playing like this... I'm torn. Do we get him another gift? He would definitely love it. I like the idea of each kiddo having the same number of gifts to open on Christmas morning, and he definitely does not NEED it (especially since he seems to have the imagination to do without), nor does Mallory need anything else to keep the numbers even. But... it just seems like the perfect idea.

I think we will do without, at least for the time being. I am in no shape to be out braving the crowds at the malls anyway - my ankle is almost certainly sprained, swollen to the size of a tennis ball and I don't think I could drive right now. Maybe we will wait to see how things go next week and then reassess. The Santa will be out on display for at least a couple of weeks. Until he gets packed away, Liam seems to have all he needs to make for some grocery shopping fun.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The good, the bad & the ugly

The good: Mallory learned how to clap today. It's so cute. But then, you knew I was going to say that, right? The bad: After lunch, as I was trying to decide between taking a very tired Mallory to playgroup and putting her down for a nap so I could go for a run on the treadmill, I fell down the stairs and twisted my ankle something awful. So neither one of those things wound up happening. It's a miracle that Mallory didn't get hurt, because I was carrying her at the time. I was a few steps from the bottom and somehow just missed a step and went right down to the foyer floor with my right foot extended. Something tells me it will be a while before the treadmill and I have a date again. I thought I was doing OK but it's been getting steadily worse all night and I am missing my book club Christmas party as a result. Boo, hiss! We'll see if I'm able to walk in the morning. A trip to the doctor's office might be in order.
The ugly: so, you want the Christmas card story? Long story short: never buy anything from Creating Keepsakes, EVER. I ordered the super cute Christmas card kit from them on November 3 (it was put up for sale on November 1). Multiple phone calls and emails later and I had multiple stories about the date it had shipped, why it had been held up, etc. I called on Friday, December 7 to cancel my order, and the parcel arrived first thing on Monday, December 10. This was AFTER I spent the weekend designing a new card to go out. Stupid me decided to go with the original card kit (which, I might add, was postmarked on November 30, contrary to every story I'd been told). I spent two days madly assembling the cards and sending them out. The kits had a few faulty pieces and the envelopes were designed to be sealed shut with a single sticker. After I drop all the cards in the mail I log onto the internet and read that the stickers are falling off in the mail and people are getting empty envelopes delivered to them... after all that! So far I am hearing that my cards are getting through... some of them taped together by the kind folks at the post office though... anyway, never again will I go through this! The last few cards I sent out include the family photo in a NORMAL card and that is what I will stick with in the future!
Anyway, if you don't get a card from us this year, either you're off our list because you've been a jerk :) - or else your card failed to make it through the postal system. Sorry about that. I'll do better next year.

Monday, December 17, 2007


In true Murphy's Law fashion, we woke up to more snow yesterday than we had all of last winter, and BOTH Christmas parties we had planned to attend were cancelled. We live in an odd little part of the world where it almost never snows despite being cold all winter long, so this was unexpected. Our morning was supposed to have been spent at our company's children's Christmas party, and we got the kids all dressed and out the door and schlepped across town to the hotel, only to find a sign on the door saying it was cancelled. While I can understand the predicament that the organizers were in, it's also got to be said that promising a two-year-old breakfast with Santa and a big party, only to fail to deliver? Well, that's not any fun for anyone.So we went back home and awaited the call that did eventually come, saying that the Roberts family get-together planned for the afternoon was also cancelled. The janitor apparently was not able to make it to the facility where it's held each year to get it ready for us. At least that party has been postponed rather than cancelled, and we do still expect to see the Roberts family this season, only it will be after Christmas now, instead of before.So Mallory spent the day crawling around our grubby house in her party dress, instead of out partying in it. She is going to have to suck it in by Christmas Day in order to fit into it (and it's a 12-month size, too - I can hardly believe she's gotten so chubby) so she'd might as well whoop it up in it while she can. And she and I stayed toasty and warm inside while Liam went outside with Chad for hours upon hours to shovel our driveway and clear off the cars. Our plans for our new house include a double attached garage - something we didn't think we'd miss when we bought our current house, but man, are we looking forward to having that next winter!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Seasonal recap

Cards sent. Well, 95% of them, anyway. Outdoor lights put up.Main tree put up and admired.
Shopping mostly complete. (This is the gift Liam picked out for Mallory earlier this week - a rotating, musical carousel won out over the dolls, even though we did find another Black Baby at a reasonable price in the store.) As of last night, all wrapping complete, too. Just need a secret Santa gift now and then it's all finished.

What's left: major baking, menu planning, and oh yeah... some relaxation.

Been in a bit of a funk lately... maybe it's the short days and not getting enough sunlight? Dunno... just another week or so and then things will get better, right? A few non-mommy oriented things this week have/will help(ed) - some going out with friends, and a long overdue hair appointment. Lots of fun family stuff on tap for this weekend, too. Time to start making merry.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Things I said I'd never do

Earlier this week we went through the fiasco of getting Liam some new winter boots. The first few times he wore last year's boots this season, he said they fit, but (not surprisingly) he soon decided they didn't. And then another little guy showed up at Cindy's house with Diego boots... and then Liam really insisted that his old boots didn't fit.

So I went out and got him some Diego boots. I swore my child would never wear cartoon character clothing, and especially not character shoes, and especially ESPECIALLY not the kind of footwear that has flashing red lights. Though in my defense, I didn't notice the flashing lights until after I got them home. Anyway, what do you think happened? I got the boots home but didn't show them to Liam - just asked if he thought he would like some Diego boots. And although this was just 24 hours after our first conversation, Liam replied that Diego boots would be OK, but that what he would really like is Spider Man boots.

And so, because I often try too hard to make my child like me, I went back out and found some Spider Man boots, and brought those home. And I was pleased, really, because the Spider Man boots were not quite as hideous as the Diego boots, and I was glad to ratchet down the hideous factor, even if only a little. But then we showed Liam both pairs of boots, and wouldn't you know it - he was enchanted with Diego.

So Spider Man went back to the store, and Diego is here to stay. And it's good that we did all this earlier in the week, because today we got some snow and had a chance to put them to use. We went out for a sled ride around the block, and Liam made some snow angels on the driveway, while Mallory amused herself by eating the snow. All good clean winter fun. (*sigh*)