Last Monday we went to see a presentation by The EquiSpirit Riding Academy in OK. The building was Frrrr-eeee-zing cold, but the kids enjoyed the Clydesdale and Quarter Horse. Nature Man even did some riding.
Then we had a few Christmas celebrations with friends...
Mrs. Smiley and her little boys made the kids paper mache masks, flingers and ammo, and awesome magnetic jars among other things. School among Thorns Teacher was kind enough to include a first-aid kit in my gift. HA! Perfect for me. I don't make it 24 hours without a cut or scrap (miraculously, I have never had stitches!!)
We also visited my grandparents in town. Their house is an odd mix between old people' s home and petting zoo. At least they don't have the goats anymore. There was a dog in the den that kept growling at us. Scared me pretty bad. But the kids enjoyed bunnies, gerbils, hamsters, fish and this freaky cat that has one green eye and one blue eye!
There's also a massive owl collection and license plate collection in that house. I should have taken pictures of that, too.
This is my Dad's dad holding my Little Lad. My baby didn't know who had him for a minute, or he would've been howling. Still, I'm glad I snapped this picture. My grandparents don't get out much, due to her polio, and they love to receive pictures of the kids.
And then there's the in-law Christmas, which we did yesterday morning. Hubby's sisters, nieces, grandma, and his Dad and stepmom were there. We haven't had the one with his mom and stepdad, brother, and two other sisters yet. Life gets a bit crazy with so much family! :-)
It can be hard to remember the REASON for the season when in-laws bicker, and people go crazy tearing into packages.
At our home (and my parents') we always read the passage in Luke before opening gifts, and then one person passes the gifts out. It's not a mad dash for more stuff. Still, there are things I plan to change. Several of my friends have mentioned their 3-gift rule. I like that. Three gifts for each child. It becomes more about finding special things for that person than about just collecting more things to open. There is less money spent, less time wasted, and less clean-up. (Besides, they'll still get plenty from family and friends. ;-)
After the in-law fiasco, we went to Natural Falls. Can you believe this incredible weather???
My Mom took these shots.
Look at that handsome dude. Looks just like his Daddy. The poor boy needs a haircut. I think he may go for a Beatles look, so we can wait on the trim.
Little Lad got VERY unhappy on the hike. He did NOT want to hike...he wanted to stand by the water and chuck the rocks in. And never leave. So my Mom took him up to the playground area while we hiked down to the falls.
You can click on the collages to enlarge.
And, yes, I still plan to post about the Home Management Binder. I'm trying to reinstate it, so I can spend less time doing the urgent, but unimportant things. I need a system in place. There's a part of me, though, that sabotages systems. Argh. God is working on me in that area, I think.