Saturday, November 29, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving 2008

We started our day off by watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. The boys and I sat on the couch in our jammies for about 1/2 hour and watched the parade, and then we decided it was time for a bowl of cereal. We ate our cereal, and then played for a little bit before we started cooking dinner.

I enlisted the boys to help me make the pumpkin filling for the pie. They were great helpers! Somewhere in the midst of our baking I left out a key ingredient....sugar! However, I didn't realize that I left it out until the pie was almost done. **NOTE- sugar-free pumpkin pie smells the same as regular pumpkin pie.
So, we weren't off to a good start. In fact, I didn't have anymore pumpkin so we made a trip to good ol' Wal-mart. I put on some pants, a hat, and my coat and off we went. Surprisingly, it wasn't crowded in the store, so we took our time and got a few extra things including a foil roasting pan,( I dug through all the boxes I could reach, and couldn't find ours), a meat thermometer, and some beautiful fall flowers for our table.

Pumpkin Pie Round 1
This was our first Thanksgiving ALL BY OURSELVES- no friends, no family- It was just the four of us depending on me (Kelly was at work, so he was no help) to come up with a successful turkey dinner. I have to admit that it was a little intimidating at first, especially as I ruined the first pie, but as I started cooking and the wonderful aromas filled my home, I realized I would be okay. In fact, it was so weird that those yummy smells could fill my home without 10 people in the kitchen.

Our Thanksgiving Centerpiece

At mealtimes during the month of November we created our "Turkey of Thanks" each one of us would think of something we were grateful for, and this is what we were able to create. He turned out beautifully.

I seriously cooked, baked, organized, washed dishes, set tables, washed dishes some more, cleared counters, etc.. ALL DAY LONG!! There was no respite! But, it was good and I had fun. The meal turned out delish, the turkey was divine, and pumpkin pie round two was absolutely heavenly! I don't give myself much credit for things in life, but thanks to my mom I can make one mean pie crust- they are GOOD!

The Cook

My sweetboys ready to dive into the meal

We had all the traditional foods. Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, and then I made green beans with almonds, and we had virgin strawberry daquiri's to drink. Yummy!

We finished the night by playing Memory with the boys. Team "Hunter and Daddy" won, as my brain was fried from being in the HOT kitchen all day long!

It was a fun and rewarding day for me, and my family loved the meal. And to top off a great day, Kelly washed all the dishes from the meal and last minute cooking dishes. What more could a girl ask for????

Monday, November 24, 2008

Triangle, Square, Rectangle, or Circle????

Once or twice a week the boys and I go walking at the Big Dipper Ice Arena. They have big hallways above the ice rink that you can run/walk around. Last Wednesday we went walking after lunch. We just did our usual walk with the double stroller, and Hunter running most of the time. We keep a pretty good pace, but there was this guy that was the "KING OF SPEEDWALKING". In fact, this guy lapped us several times while we were there.
This is the conversation that followed
Hunter: Why is that guy walking so fast?
Momma: He is in good shape?
Hunter: Oh!?!
(Time passes and he laps us again)
Hunter: What is good shape?
Momma: When you can run or walk really fast
(Time passes and he laps us again)
Hunter: What is good shape?
Momma: It means he has good muscles, and heart and lungs, so he can go fast without getting tired.
(Time passes and he laps us yet again)
Hunter: What is good shape?
Momma: Hunter, I already told you! It means you can exercise really well!
Hunter: Momma, what is good shape like circle, square, rectangle, triangle?
Momma: Ding Ding Ding Ding!!!! (Lights go off and I start laughing)
**The whole conversation, Hunter has been wondering what the best shape is. And he HAD been saying, "What is A good shape the whole time." I'm sure he was wondering why my answers were so off the wall.***
By the time I finally understood Hunter, the "KING OF SPEEDWALKING" was already long gone around the track, but Hunter was still talking about him. However, there was a guy in front of us who was a little chubby and Hunter said, "What shape is he?" Well, the actual shape I would have chosen was a circle, but I couldn't say that. So, the conversation went like this...
Hunter: Momma, what shape is that guy?
Momma: I'd say that super fast guy is a rectangle
Hunter: A rectangle?
Momma: Yes, because he is tall and thin like a rectangle
Hunter: Oh, a rectangle...yeah!
Time passes and the guy laps us again
Hunter: He's a good shape...he's a rectangle!

**A little misunderstanding- but always something fun to laugh about!**

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hunter's First "Swimmin Blessin"

Go Hunter Go!
It was an exciting day at our house today. We were all anxiously anticipating 5:00 pm to roll around for Hunters first swimming lesson. It has been all the word around our house since a week or so ago when we enrolled for the 3-5 year old class at the Hamme Pool. I love to talk about it with Hunter because he always calls it "swimmin blessins". (Blessin is confused with blessings for dinner prayer, but it is so cute we haven't bothered him much about it.)

On the way to the pool Hunter had some special music requests so he could get ready for the fun that was about ready to happen. We got to the pool and stripped down and then I took him through the girls locker room with my hand over his eyes to lead him to the shower. We got him wet and then the poor boy froze until his teacher got out to the mat where they were supposed to meet. I was a little nervous about what the teacher would be like. Hunter was hoping it would be a male teacher, and I was keeping my fingers crossed that it was a guy too so Hunter wouldn't be disappointed. Well, it was our lucky day. Mr. Mark is Hunter's teacher, he is probably 60 years old and as funny and as energetic as can be. Kelly said he thought that he sounded like teacher on Finding Nemo, he was really a lot of fun!

This was Hunter's first organized class of any type, but he did well. He isn't super aggressive about keeping his place in line, but he'll get it figured out. He seemed to enjoy the teacher, kids, and the water. He didn't drink or inhale any water like a couple of other kids did, but he did hit his head pretty hard when he was coming out of the pool. He climbed up the steps and then stood up and hit the railing really hard. I was crossing my fingers that he wouldn't cry, but he did. Even though he was crying he found it in himself to say, "Thanks, Mr. Mark". I think he is looking forward to more fun in the pool!

Our Proud Little Swimmer

Practicing his jog and walk in the water

Landing his jump to Mr. Mark
Mr. Mark told Hunter that he thought he had wings because he could jump so high. Hunter was pretty impressed by that.

Chena Hotsprings

About and hour away from us, there is a hot springs called Chena Hot Springs. We decided to take a little get a way since Kelly had four days off this week. We loaded up the kids Saturday afternoon for a fun filled weekend. We swam in a not so warm pool, sat in a hot tub, Kelly and I sat in the big rock lake that is 146 degrees (we sat in there at seperate times because children aren't allowed), we drank hot chocolate, rested, laughed, and made memories.

Enjoying some Snow Monkey Hot Chocolate
(Hot Chocolate with Banana and Coconut Flavoring...YUMMY!)

Chancey and Momma warming up in the Activity Center

You gotta love a cute little diaper bum in some hi-tech long johns

Cute brothers having some fun in the sled

My favorite line that I heard this weekend was from Kelly and it went something like this
"I hate eating out with kids, it is like you can't really enjoy life."
For those who don't know, Kelly loves eating a good meal in a nice come visit and babysit for a good cause.

Camping and Digging....What happened to my house????

Hunter and Chance have picked up new hobbies since we've moved to Fairbanks. Hunter is really, really into camping and Chance likes to dig. You might be thinking, it is too cold to be outside doing either of those things in Alaska right now, and you would be right. However, this is indoor camping and digging.

Hunter loves to find a laundry basket or a rubbermaid tote and fill it up with our toy containers, any loose toys, shoes, coats, hats, EVERYTHING from his dresser drawers, boots, and an occasional cookie, cracker, or fruit snack. It is a big part of his day! So, he fills up the container and pushes, pulls, and tugs it into his bedroom or on the living room couch and unloads everything there. Then we all like to go and read stories in the "tent" and pretend to have a picnic, and tell stories around the campfire. It is usually pretty fun, but such a pain to pick everything up and put it away, but they are only little once!
The picture of Hunter's camping trip is a couch camping trip, I didn't think to take the opportunity to capture one of the bedroom camping trips on the camera.

Don't Mess With IT!
*After the couch looked like this for two days Kelly was looking for something and asked me if I had seen it while I was organizing stuff on the couch???? I guess he forgot that Hunter LOVES his camping trips*

Now for the DIGGING! Little Chance loves to dig everything out of closets, drawers, toilets, bags, whatever he can find. This day was a crazy day because Hunter was camping at the same time that Chance was digging, but they were happy. So Chance just likes to make sure that everything is off of the closet floor (mostly shoes) and then he wants to put them all on and walk in around in them. He usually ends up getting frustrated and throwing himself on the floor because he can't keep the shoes on longer than two steps.

Fun! Fun! Fun!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My Sweet Luv!

Friday night Kelly was late getting home from work. The boys and I had eaten an early lunch and so they were STARVING. I decided to just heat up the leftovers from the week for them and get them started eating and then thought Kelly and I might be able to have a kind of quiet and relaxing dinner. While I was warming up food Hunter said, "Mom, I have to go pee!" and I said, "Then you should go!" like I always do. I had noticed after a while that he had been in there a little too long. So, I went and checked on him. Well, I think half a roll of toilet paper had been flushed...but it didn't get through. So, I debated on whether or not to call the front desk. Kelly doesn't like me to have strange men come to the house when I am home alone...I agree! But, I went ahead and called and thought Kelly would surely be home by the time the guy came to the apartment. Well, the guy came, but he was about 16 or so, so I didn't worry too much. I did tell him that it was just toilet paper, but I don't think he believed me :)
Anyway, I made Hunter watch and see how much work he caused the poor guy on a Friday night. The kid went through 3 plungers to get it unplugged, but finally it worked! Yipee!!!

While the kid was mopping up the floor, I heard a growl at the door. (That is how Kelly greets the boys.) So I sent the boys to the door, and instead of coming in Kelly told them to come with him. All three of them came back into the house with flowers in their hands and hugs and kisses for me. I love tulips!!!! How thoughtful of Kelly!

Thank You Kelly Bean!!

History DOES Repeat Itself

Professor Peabody says, "History Does Repeat Itself!"

We have all heard the saying, "History repeats itself." I have seen this many times over in instances of the world and the nation we live in. However, this time around...I find myself in the middle of it. No, I am not going to get into politics with you...I am not that type. I simply am finding myself living in college type housing AGAIN!!!!
Part of Kelly's sign on/moving package was that we got FOUR months of free housing. Mind you, that is probably a good $8000.00 in Alaska with utilities it is really a SWEET deal for us. But it does make us laugh because we own a BEAUTIFUL home in Bethel, and now we are living the college dream again...only this time with two children :)

So, here are some pictures of our lovely home in Wedgewood "Resort"

Living Room
(Mind you, NONE of the furniture or wall hangings belong to the McGee Family)

Itty Bitty Kitchen

Dining Room/Storage Unit
(This area was big enough that we could scoot the table forward and put ALL that we own in this little area and the closets.)


Master Bedroom
(Notice the second bed with the hotel style comforter on top. I did decide to put our comforters and blankets on the beds to make it feel a little more like home. Also, who knows what kind of things are on the hotel bedding...they NEVER change them!)

Chance and Hunter's room
(Yes, Chance sleeps in a pack 'n' play..we sold the crib and he will go in a toddler bed in January when we find a house.)

So, as you can see, we are a little cramped/cluttered and all over the place here, but it is FREE!!! And we are GRATEFUL (we just have to remind ourselves often).

Friday, November 7, 2008

New "Do" for Momma

It was time to get a haircut. I have been excited to live in a place where I can actually get a cut when I need one. I've also been excited to find a hair stylist that I like and can stick with for a long time. I'm not sure I found her this time around, but there is plenty of time for that.

Kelly LOVES short hair. I think he likes it on me mostly because it was short when we were dating. I LOVE the idea of short hair, but I'm not sure I always LOVE IT CUT that way. So, because I was tired of dealing with my long bangs and boring hair, I got it cut last week. Here are the results.

Pretty good for a Self Mug Shot

Hunter took this picture while watching "Kipper"...Impressive!

Our Little "Chancey"

I thought everyone might enjoy learning about our little "Chancey"

Chancey LOVES to color! We went to the library and after story time they did a little craft. Hunter doesn't like coloring very much, so I usually just sit for two minutes while Hunter kinda colors in his picture, but I wasn't going to get away with that this time. Chance wanted a kitty picture!! So, I gave him one! He wanted to try to color with every crayon he could get his hands on. He loved it!

During Halloween time I discovered that Chancey loves to look at his artwork, and show his pride for his creativity. So, we started hanging his pictures on the wall in the dining room that is closest to his chair. At each meal he points to his artwork and we all clap and cheer. He loves to bask in all the glory. He then proceeds to meow like the kitty in the picture. It is so funny..I'm not kidding EVERY meal!

Chance generally sports a slimey t-shirt due to a lack of "drool control"

This is Chance after his shower with Daddy. Kelly always sends him out of the bathroom with his towel wrapped around his waist, like a little man. It makes me laugh!

On this particular occasion, he Pee-peed in the towel
(notice the dark circle)

Our little Chance LOVES to eat!!! He also loves to throw his food on the floor for an after mealtime snack. A.K.A. Floor Jerky

Chance also loves to climb things and be up high.

Last but not least, he loves BASKETS! If he can sit in it, he will.

Chance is such a fun little guy to have around our house. He constantly makes us laugh with his silly dances, silly faces, silly "stories" that he tries to tell, and we love his hugs around our legs when we least expect them.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Part II

We began our Halloween Day by leaving our house around 10:10 am to go to a nursing home to do some indoor trick or treating. As you can see below....we are glad it was
Trick or Treating
(yes, that is -7)

We had a lot of fun at the nursing home. It was a little confusing though because I had told Hunter that he needed to wait for people to hand him the candy, however I forgot that a lot of the elderly aren't able to pick up small items. So, they just had bowls of candy sitting in front of them and the kids were just supposed to reach in.
The old folks had a lot of fun seeing all of the cute kids in costume, and were so sweet and smiley. I'm glad we were able to help them have a fun day. It was also good to have Hunter exposed to something different than he is used to.

After lunch and nap time we just hung out around the house and played and colored Halloween pictures. Soon enough it was time to get our traditional Halloween dinner started.....

Dinner In A Pumpkin

It was delicious! And crawling with creepy things :) I decorated the table with orange plates, purple forks, creepy crawlies, candy corns , black cups, and the cutest skeleton straws from the dollar store!

Dinner was a hit! The kids loved the straws...I hope I can find some more next year.

Then it was time to go out into the cold for some outdoor trick or treating. It wasn't as cold as it was in the morning, now it was up to +2 degrees, and then down again to 0 by the time we were done having fun.

We started knocking on doors together as a family, but Chance and I were frozen after 4 doors, so we drove the Jeep around and followed Kelly and Hunter. Hunter would do four doors and then come get blasted by the car heater, and then do that again about 3 times. He was a trooper! Can you tell that candy is a pretty big motivator???

This is as photogenic as I could get Chance to be in his costume

This was Hunter, a little cold and tattered after being frozen for too long.

This is our Haul!

Chancey stickered himself with a bat

And this is what we all looked like and felt like after we got our fill of goodies!

We had a fun Halloween 2008- can't wait to see what next year brings!