Saturday, December 31, 2011

Wrapping Up 2011---With Time Outdoors!

This winter's weather has been so unusual. We have had minimal snow, but cool enough temperatures to get the lake good and frozen.

Here is a glimpse of the action on the lake Christmas afternoon.

Sledding on the ice is great!

Martha, unable to decide whether to follow my sister or father.

William sledding down the hill that he and his Papa made. They took snow from the yard and made a sledding run. It is FAST!

Nora enjoying a morning outside.

Audrey and Grant looking serious about finding the perfect spot to build a snowman.

Finishing touches on FROSTY!

Best wishes for a wonderful 2012!!

Christmas 2011

Christmas was so fun this year! Nora was old enough to enjoy it, and William and Audrey were so excited about all the magic of Christmas.

Our first celebration was with Darin's family. Mummi Alice and Grandpa Jeff emailed Santa and he was able to make a quick stop to help the Skaudis family celebrate...he even showed up in a firetruck---talk about an entrance!
Audrey was so excited to see Santa, she was the first one to hop up on his lap and tell him that she wanted "princess stuff" for Christmas!

William thought Santa was so cool!

Nora was not quite as excited about sitting on a stranger's lap as the big ones, but she sat next to Santa, safe on Papa's lap.

Even Uncle Eddie got on Santa's lap, and got a special present too!!

The girls got a little love from Great Mummi Sylvia.

William got a tool bag full of real tools!

Papa and Nora.

William and Mummi Sylvia.

Our next Christmas celebration was the Kennedy Christmas Eve. It was fun to catch up with my cousins, aunts, and uncles, that I don't see often enough. William had a chance to go out to my uncle's big garage to check out some of his awesome machines.

William and the tractor.

He can --almost-- reach the pedal.

Auntie and Grant at Kennedy Christmas.

My Aunt Barb gave the kids a special Christmas gift....she is letting them each borrow a tiny violin! The are absolutely darling. Here is Audrey girl trying one out.

Santa brought outdoor toys for Christmas this year!

William was the 1st (child) up on Christmas morning. He was so very excited!

Nora. Literally not ready to be up.

Audrey was anxious to see what Santa brought. She had to bring her new dolly down with her!

Audrey was thrilled about her new Strawberry Shortcake dolls!

Nora has had her eye on the Dora Pillow Pet since we spotted them in Target early this fall. We often let her borrow one until we check out, then she has to hand it over to the checkout lady. Nora was over the moon to have a Dora of her very own. She calls her "D0e-Doe."

Early Christmas morning.

Nora helping Papa build a Christmas fire.

William and Great Grandma Iris.

Umhauer Christmas.

Audrey loves her baking set! She loves to help mom "MAKE" in the kitchen.

Nora tried out her violin too!

Does she look like a natural?!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Deck The Halls

Has the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas EVER gone this fast before? This is one of my favorite times of year!! It seems like I was just dumping the last of the green bean casserole left over from Thanksgiving! William made a paper chain to count down to Christmas in Sunday School. Every morning I get the official countdown.

Here is a glimpse of our preparation for Christmas.

My dear Grandma Iris gave us an artificial tree she had for many years. I love having this tree for 3 reasons: it was my Grandma's, the branches are sturdy enough to hold up the heaviest of ornaments, and we can put it up early enough to enjoy it for a few weeks. The kids claim the tree as theirs and are very proud of it!

Audrey and William were in a little Christmas play at church. William was a wiseman, and Audrey was a sheep.

The big kids, Martha, and the husband went out yesterday afternoon to our woods to cut a tree.

Yesterday was December 21...look at the GRASS.

Nora loves the Christmas trees, and will walk up and admire, "WOW!"

Our stockings---anticipating Santa's arrival.

Merry Christmas and best wishes for a happy 2012!!!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Wieser Visit!

Our dear friends Emily and Ben came up to see us over the weekend. We have a wonderful and unique relationship; our families are very similar. Our boys share a birthday, our middle girls are a week apart, and our babies are about 10 months apart. It is so much fun to get together---all TEN of us!!!

Emily taught me how to make these cupcake bouquets. Aren't they cute?! Emily is a crafter. I even talked her into giving me a little lesson in crocheting!

The eldest! We took a quick trip to Duluth to see Santa and the light display at Bentleyville.

Emily and Baby Claire, who was such a trooper all weekend.

Audrey, Carter, and William patiently waiting in line to see Santa.

Emily, Ben, and Claire.

William, Audrey, Nora...and part of Santa.

Chloe and Carter with Santa.

Just a taste of the beautiful light display.

A little self-portrait!

After the lights we were feeling brave and took six kids, all under the age of 5, out for dinner. Not sure if they were tired, or just really that good, but it could not have been a more peaceful dinner! Here are 'the babies' of the group, Claire and Nora.

My kids could not get enough of Ben!!

The Wieser and Skaudis Children--Audrey, Carter, Claire, Chloe, Nora and William!