Friday, November 30, 2007

"Literacy" Night

All year, I have been shocked at the notes that come home from Shanna's school. They have had misspelled words, bad grammar, bad punctuation, etc... This is the place that is supposed to teach her all of those things! (In fairness, I have to say that the notes from her actual teacher are okay though.) But, last night was really bad. It was Literacy Night at the school. One of the activities was a work sheet that you had to complete using a large poster on the wall as guidance. In big text (so that you could see it from across the room) this is what one of the words was on the poster: beatiful. Are you kidding me???

Friday.... is it really?

You know that first moment you open your eyes and you're so disoriented that you aren't sure what day it is? Every day this week, I have thought (or maybe wished) it to be Friday. When I woke up this morning, and realized that it really was Friday, I got a big smile on my face. Saturday would be better, because then I could have gone back to sleep. But, if it's actually Friday, I'll take it! It has been a long week.

Having said that, I need to run and get Shanna's lunch made and get her ready for school. Happy Friday!!!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

It's Begining to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Last night Tyler and I went outside to put some lights up after the kids went to bed. It kind of felt like we were teenagers again, giggling and being outside when it was dark and cold. We didn't last very long because it really was cold, (and we can't stay up like we used to anymore) but the girls should be surprised tonight when we turn the lights on. We still have the icicle lights to put up on the house, but we're getting there!

Shanna woke up a little while ago, hoping to watch some cartoons. When I told her "no", she said "well, I guess I don't have anything to be up for then" and went back to bed. Poor little girl, has nothing except for tv to get up for in the morning. I guess I better go tickle her and get her ready for school.

By the way, I won't have my new cell phone until probably Monday, so if you're trying to call me, that's why I am not answering.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Christmas is coming

Kaci and I started decorating for Christmas yesterday. She is so excited! Tyler put the tree up last night, so tonight or maybe Thursday night we'll decorate it. I put a little Christmas village in the girls' room and Kaci loves moving the little people around through the town. I am thinking maybe a doll house would be a good gift for her. Neither girl has given us a good list yet. Shanna made one, but it had things like "a diamond ring, laptop computer, new bed and a new house on it." She doesn't think small! I am trying to put ideas in her head that she wants a new bike because she has outgrown hers, and it would be a great time to get a new one! They have a trinket store at her school, and she took some money yesterday to buy gifts for her family. I caught her with ALL of her money in her backpack before school. We had to renegotiate a reasonable amount to take. She was proud to bring home what she had picked out.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I hate Mondays

What a Monday. Maybe I forgot to tell myself how much I love Mondays when I woke up. To make it short, on the way to take one car to the dealer, the other car had the "check engine" light come on, my cell phone decided to bite the dust, our lunch place was closed... well, looking at that list, it wasn't really that bad, but I still have a lot of pieces to pick up this morning to make everything right in the universe. So, if you're trying to call me, call me at home. I'll be there because my car is still in the shop.

Monday, November 26, 2007

And we're back

We had a great Thanksgiving weekend. We went to Las Vegas to see Tyler's 2 sisters and their families and his parents also flew in for a few days. It was a great time. We did NOT go shopping on Friday (can you imagine the chaos in Vegas? It is crazy on a normal day!) We also didn't get any of the Christmas stuff up. Oh well, there's always tomorrow, right? The girls had a ton of fun helping me make gingerbread cookies yesterday. Yum!

Here are a few pictures from the weekend:

Shanna and Jakob

Kaci and Ryan. She kept kissing him and then she'd say "it's ok, he's my cousin"

Shanna's cousin Carly let her hang out with her on Friday and gave her a makeover. Yikes! She looked so grown up. Shanna got to go to "GVR" with Carly and meet her friends for a few minutes that night. She was walking on air! Thanks Carly!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


It's cold this morning. I guess it IS November, and all of the trees still have their leaves, so it's time, but brrr!! (Ok, all of my loving relatives from Colorado where it is probably snowing right now, say at the same time, awwwww.....) It's the second night we have let Cocoa sleep inside. It just feels too mean to kick him out when we go to bed and it's cold. He has been really good keeping his privilege. (so far)

The girls have a new game for discipline. Shanna's teacher gave me the idea. I bought them two rolls of carnival tickets, and they have to have 5 tickets to watch a tv show. They can earn or lose tickets for behavior and by doing chores. We'll see how it goes. Kaci earned and lost a bunch yesterday. I gave Shanna her 5 (they start with 5 each morning) a few minutes ago and told her that she better have these now because she is going to start losing them fast.

We saw the baby and *his* heartbeat yesterday. It was the best sight ever! After the past 2 months of wondering if there was anyone in there, we saw *him*! The baby made sure we knew *he* wouldn't be upstaged by *his* sisters and did a few backflips! (Already *he's* saying "Look Mom, Look Dad!") Of course we don't know if *he* is a *he*, but we'll just call *him* that for now. It's better than calling it *it*. Everything looks great so far.

Oops... Shanna just lost a ticket.

According to Shanna, we are now "the only" house in our neighborhood without Christmas lights. I just told her "bah humbug." We'll try to get them out this weekend. I think the growing pile of laundry it going to bury me by this weekend, so maybe I won't have to worry about it after all. I did get my Christmas shopping started, last year I was done by now. If you think you should be on my list this year, you better e-mail me some ideas. (hint hint especially to a certain tall dark and handsome man!)

Time to get moving. I have 4 bananas sitting on the counter turning darker and darker that are begging to be made into banana bread. Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Girl at Work

Tyler set Kaci up on his computer this morning while I was taking a shower. She was pretty proud! Notice her drink on the coaster by the computer??? She knows how to type her name all by herself!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday Luv Bunny! I can't believe it is your 10th birthday we have spent together! I hope all of your wishes come true!!
Love, Sunshine

Friday, November 16, 2007

Ballerina Girl

We got to observe Shanna's ballet class yesterday. It is amazing how much she has progressed! Her teacher would call out a long sequence in French, then turn on the music. Somehow, all of these little 7-9 year olds would know exactly what to do. She did look pretty tired, I think the classical music relaxes her! I was impressed with her balance and concentration.

Shanna wants to move to Colorado so that she can be a figure skater. She thinks that I had such a better childhood because I was able to skate. For Christmas, she wants a new house in Colorado, white skates and skating lessons. (Or, she said that Tyler could just build an ice rink here.)

Here is a slide show I put together of how Shanna has grown up since she started dancing.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Dancing Girls

It's Parent's Observation Week at the girls' dance classes... Here are some pictures from Shanna's tap and Kaci's ballet class. Shanna's ballet is tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Come ON Mom!

Am I really the only Mom who drives her daughter to school in her pajamas? Shanna thinks so. I know, I am so embarrassing in my pink bunny slippers and curlers. No, really, all I do is pull my hair into a nice ponytail, zip up a jacket over my t-shirt, wear my warm pj pants and I actually wear shoes. But according to her, all of the other moms are dressed in the morning. One other thing that apparently I didn't know... all of the other kids in her class have a Game Boy. She wants to know if after Tyler's birthday our family can get one! (See how smart she is with her wording?) Sigh... I remember when I thought I was smarter than my Mom too. I also remember the moment when I realized I wasn't.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Monday Monday

How can it be Monday again? Ever feel like you are in the movie "Groundhog's Day?" I need to do something like wear my socks inside out or make oatmeal for dinner.

On a positive note, it still feels like spring. The leaves are just starting to turn and the mornings feel a little brisk, but the afternoons are sunny and warm. I miss the snow around Christmas, but I don't miss being cold the rest of the winter.

It's going to be a busy week, I guess I should get it started...

"The most beautiful ten 2-lettered words I have ever learned in my life - If It Is To Be, It Is Up To Me."
~ Piyush Beriwala

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Say it ain't so!

It all started last month with Shanna showing us her dance for her Super Stepper Christmas performance. Then, she started singing Christmas songs. That is understandable because the second graders are practicing for a holiday performance at school. But last night was just over the top. There is a house in our neighborhood with their lights on (I mean ON, not just on the house) and get this... A Christmas Tree in their window LIT UP! On the way home from dinner, Tyler found a holiday station on the satellite radio and he and Shanna started singing Christmas songs. (She was singing because she was truly happy to hear Christmas songs, he was singing to bug me.) He pulled in front of "the Christmas house," rolled down the windows and blasted Christmas music! Ha ha ha... very funny..... I love Christmas and I like Christmas music, but only two weeks before and one day after Christmas. Bah Humbug.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Miss Fashion Drama

I was sitting here, thinking about what to write about, and in the last 5 minutes, Shanna has come into the office about a dozen times times asking "does this match?" She has gotten very interested in what she wears to school. She won't wear the same pair of shoes twice in a row, she thinks that jeans are boring, and if I tell her that her shirt is too short, it makes her really want to wear it! I remember wearing short shirts that showed all of my stomach to school when I was a teenager. How did my mom let me out of the house?

Thank goodness we made it through the week. I have no energy, and so much to do. Last weekend I found enough energy to mow and weed the front yard, hopefully I can get the back yard under control this weekend. There are a bunch of cute kid movies coming out to the theaters, maybe we'll take the girls to one of them.

Time to go crack the whip and get the girl to school! Here's a picture when mornings were easier.... It's been several years! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Minds of their own

I think the girls are better. I think they stored up all of their orneriness from when they were sick and have doubled up on it for a while. Kaci is sweet when it's just the two of us, but as soon as Shanna gets home, she turns into this little monster, causing all kinds of problems. She hits, argues, etc... but I am not sure how much of it is her, and how much of it Shanna quietly provokes. Last night, Kaci hit Shanna, and got in trouble. A few minutes later, I saw her "play hit" Shanna, and Shanna screamed like she had a broken bone! Or, in the shower they had a huge argument. I quietly went in to see what was being said, and Kaci was trying to use body wash before shampoo, and Shanna was holding it up in the air telling her she had to use shampoo first! Do you think the neighbors would understand if they heard me screaming outside?

On another subject, Shanna has decided that she wants to cut her hair. I should mention that she has a *best friend* that has short hair. And Crocs like Shanna had to get a few weeks ago. Oh yeah, Shanna wants to take singing lessons because the other girl takes singing lessons. (I couldn't talk her into joining the school choir when school started though.) I remember cutting my hair short when I was her age, and I just can't let her do it. Maybe this summer when it's hot, and if she'll donate it to "Locks of Love" we'll talk. But for right now, no. (Do I sound like one of those moms who lives their dreams through their kids?)

She also has had peer pressure at school about a certain fairy who comes when you lose a tooth. She has asked twice now straight out about the truth of that story, and I have reflected it back to her both times. I'm sure once she is done thinking about a fairy, next she'll move on to a creepy old guy coming into the house at midnight and a bunny who delivers candy instead of eating right through the foil! I just want to get through one last Christmas season before she loses the magic.

I guess I should just say I am so glad they are both feeling better and be glad I am dealing with attitudes instead of fevers! About the picture... It is obviously taken 3 years ago, but they both had the same expression on their faces in the shower last night!!!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Everyone Better???

Will I be cursed if i say that everyone is feeling better? It has been an awful 2 weeks with both girls being sick. Poor little Kaci has been laying in bed during the day and up all night coughing. There hasn't been much sleep going on in our house! She was well enough to go for a walk this morning and then to dance, so I think she is on the mend. She has some sparkle back in her eyes and was teasing her sister, so I think we're just about there!

Monday, November 05, 2007

A Big W

What a game! I won't be yelling for victory or anything, especially since Shanna set the tv to record one of her "tween" shows and it ended our game by the last 4 minutes of the game. (It just so happened to be the most exciting 4 minutes of the whole game!) I thought there was no way we'd win. We were behind when the tv stopped, and when I logged on to the website, we had won! I am sure we will have a repeat of the game in the playoffs later in the year. It's too bad these two teams can't play each other in the Super Bowl. I do have to say, victory is much more fun when you have someone to celebrate with! Maybe now I'll convince Tyler that the Patriots really are the better team.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Game Day

The day is here... Patriots vs Colts. Wager negotiations have been unsuccessful. The mood in the house is tense. The girls have chosen sides. More updates to come.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Incredible Dog

Oh yeah, I almost forgot. We weren't the only ones dressed up on Halloween night! Here is a picture of Cocoa on Halloween, dressed up as the dog from Incredibles.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Quote of the Day

"To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe."

~ Anatole France

I need more chocolate

The girls were happy only going to a few houses to trick-or-treat this year. I thought that was great on Halloween night. It was a school night, I had a headache and really wasn't in the mood to be knocking on doors for any longer than we had to. Well, now I want to go trick-or-treating again. When the kids aren't looking and you raid their little pumpkins, you can find some really good chocolate that you never think to buy! You can get stuck in a chocolate rut and buy the same thing over and over and over for yourself. I remember last year rediscovering Sugar Babies. This year, I think all of our neighbors bought their candy the same place I did, and I want something new and good! To make matters worse, Shanna forbade me from touching her candy, so I only have one pumpkin to work with!)

Here's another observation while I am talking about sweets. The last time we roasted marshmallows, Shanna really wanted to roast the little ones because she thinks they taste better. I thought that was the silliest thing ever and told her there was no way I was going to sit there and poke mini-marshmallows on her stick. But last night, I was making sweet potatoes, and sprinkled some of the mini ones on top. I had to have a few, and you know what? She's right! Mini-marshmallows DO taste better than big ones! Why is that? Maybe, just maybe if I am really feeling patient, the next time we roast marshmallows, I will sit there and poke the little ones on the stick...for both of us.

Halloween Pictures

Here are some pictures from our Halloween night. I was trying to post them yesterday, but Kaci is taking her turn being sick, and has had a high fever and crud in her chest. She sleeps in 10 minute increments which is really taking a toll on Tyler and me.

A scary witch and cute pink haired "Stephanie"

Tyler started out being silly with Shanna's "Kim Possible" hair from last year, but every 11 year old boy who came to the door recognized him as the "Wendy's commercial guy" He changed later in the night to a big purple Dr. Seuss hat! I can say it is the first time I kissed a man with pig tails!

Wahoo.... who is that crazy lady? (That's all real hair by the way!)

Keeping with the Swenson tradition, I made sourdough doughnuts....after the kids went to bed!!! And I made more last night, so don't think they are too deprived!