Merry Christmas to all. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. It was quite fun for us this year because of Annabelle. She loved opening her presents, especially once she realized that all of them were new toys for her. I had a tough time convincing her that Santa brought presents for other people as well, and not all of the gifts were hers. Here's a few pictures and videos from the last few days. This first video is one of my favorites. Annabelle is the horse and her one-year old cousin gets a ride. Michael's dad got a Wii for his birthday last month and here is Annabelle and Michael playing on it together. Annabelle's new favorite activity- jumping off the stairs. She's such a daredevil.
Since this year Annabelle understands who Santa Clause is, I thought that it was about time she met him. Santa came to the library last night, so we went and stood in line to get a picture with him. I think I was more excited than Annabelle. I love this time of year and having a picture of Annabelle on Santa's lap just makes Christmas even more enjoyable. After waiting in line for 20 minutes and being totally excited to see him, Annabelle freaked out when it was her turn. She wouldn't even look at him. Thankfully, she didn't cry or scream, she just ducked her head and tried to stay as close to me as possible. But once I told her we were leaving, she decided Santa was a good enough guy and she looked at him and even gave him a high five. This is so silly, but as we were walking away from Santa, I almost started crying because I was so disappointed that she wouldn't sit on his lap. I'm totally blaming the crying spell on the pregnancy. It was such a small thing to get worked up over, but I couldn't help but get all excited about Annabelle seeing Santa for the first time.
To make me feel better, we then decorated a gingerbread house. Well, mostly I decorated while Annabelle snacked on the treats meant for decorations. After a few minutes of this, I was totally under control and pretty embarrassed over my reaction to Annabelle meeting Santa Clause, and I think it was still a good evening overall.
Last week, Annabelle and I were at the library and she decided she wanted to check out a new DVD entitled, "Dora the Explorer Summer Adventure". I tried to get Annabelle to watch that show on tv several months ago, but with no success. Then, out of the blue, she picks it out from the library and now is completely obsessed with it. Nothing is better than Dora right now, which I guess is okay because it's an educational show, but it's weird how this obsession came on so fast. Here is a video of Annabelle singing and dancing along to one of the songs from the movie.
Saturday, I was gone for most of the day and and came home at about 5:00 to find this: I guess Annabelle decided that she wanted to take a nap in the corner of her room, which is unusual for the obvious reason of wanting to sleep in the corner, but also because she rarely takes naps anymore at all. So Michael helped her get comfortable and she did indeed take a nap, although I had to wake her up as soon as I found her because it was way too late for her to be sleeping. As I expected due to her late nap, after I put her to bed that night, she ended up talking to herself until well after 10 before finally falling asleep.
I have been teaching piano for several years, but last week was the first time that I had a recital for my students. All eight performed songs in front of family and friends. I am so proud of each of them.
The recital was held at my house and it took a few days get the house ready to accommodate 30+ people. But I am so happy with the way the evening went. All my students played excellently and even Michael showed off talents. He and I played a duet together. It was a very fun and rewarding evening for me and I am so grateful for the opportunity I get to teach piano. I am always so proud to see the progress my students are making.
Even though it was only about 15 degrees yesterday with the fierce winter wind blowing, Michael braved the cold and put up our Christmas lights. He had to come in the house every few minutes just to get some of the numbness out of his hands, but he did it! We may put up more lights this weekend, but it they won't be nearly as difficult. Just to help illustrate how cold it is, today I took a picture of a snowman that was built at a neighbor's house almost 2 weeks ago. It looks exactly the same today as it did the day it was built. Not a single bit of snow has melted off it. Yikes! And Annabelle wore her "Christmas" dress to church today. I got several compliments of how cute she looked. I couldn't quite capture the cuteness in these pictures, but oh well.
I have been wearing glasses since I was in the 5th grade. As a freshman in high school, I finally switched over to contacts. I hated wearing glasses and so for the past 10 + years, I would only wear them when I got up in the morning or late at night after I had removed my contacts. I've never had a pair of glasses that looked okay on me. Now, almost 11 years later, I have finally gotten a new pair of glasses that I might actually wear outside in public. I found a website that was having a sale on their glasses, plus a buy-one-get-one-free deal. I went through the glasses and found two pairs that I liked. The only problem is you couldn't try them on and see how they looked on you. But the website had this cool feature where you update a picture of your face to the computer and it puts glasses on you in the picture so you can see how they'll look. I finally decided it was worth getting new glasses and so for a total of $23.98, I was able to have two new eye glass frames with my updated lens prescription in them shipped to my house. What do you think?
Since Thanksgiving is now over, I am in full force Christmas mode. The day after we got back from Thanksgiving vacation, I had the Christmas tree out and Annabelle and I had a blast decorating it. Annabelle is now old enough to understand some parts of Christmas, especially the lights. She loves to look at all of our neighbor's lights around their house.
However, we are a little behind in our own lights. I think we might have missed the ideal time to put up lights (pre-Thanksgiving). Michael went out to see if he could do a little bit last night, but found a thick layer of ice on the edge of the shingles, right where the hooks that hold the lights need to go. And the temperature doesn't look like the high will be much above freezing for the next few weeks at least, so it looks like the ice may be here for a while. Hopefully, we'll get something up around the house before Christmas. (And just so people can appreciate what it's like here, at 10:00 am this morning, it was 5 degrees outside, with the high of 23 degrees today.)
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. We got the spend some quality time with Michael's parents and brother. We enjoyed an awesome Thanksgiving dinner (thanks, Cynthia), pickleball (well, everyone else did. I chose to sit on the sidelines and watch), swimming (indoor pool, obviously), some quality family time playing the new Wii Robert got for his birthday which was also last week, and of course, some BYU vs Utah football, which we fortunately were able to win on overtime.