Monday, November 28, 2011

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Week 48 - the girls helping with decorations at Pop and Nana's after church

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Giving Thanks

Our Thanksgiving in pictures:

Wednesday we went to Montgomery for a visit.  Jeremy's great grandmother Helen from Illinois was there and his grandmother Janice from Arizona.  We don't see them often, but it's always a treat when we do!

Parker fell asleep watching the movie on the way home.

 Deep fried goodness on Thursday at Pop and Nana's house.

Mom and Matt hard at work. 

Three hungry kids!

All the cousins ready for lunch.

Round 2 on Thursday afternoon at Jeremy's aunt Anita's house. 
Meme and Pawpaw with all the great grandkids.

Earl and Arnelle with all 5 of their children.

The boys ready for bed after a long day of turkey.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A Star is Born

     Yes, that's the new star.  Notice any similarities to the old, dead star?  That's right, another plastic, tacky star.  At the very least it doesn't blink.  I guess it will go along with our tree, which has 3 different kinds of lights on it this year.  Jeremy usually puts all the lights on the tree, but this year I did it while he was at work.  By putting on the lights I mean he strings 2 skinny strands of lights from the bottom to the top and leaves all the wires out for everyone to see.  I think I put 6 boxes of lights on the bottom 3rd of the tree this year.  I knew I was doing a good job when Jackson looked at it and said, "This looks really good.  You can't even see all the wires for the lights."  Point proven.  However, being the semi-frugal family we are, I can't buy new lights until after the season is over.  If there's one thing that takes a drastic dip in price after Christmas it's Christmas decor, including boxes of lights.  So, we will just have to manage until then.  Our tree isn't "themed" like a lot of them are, so it doesn't look as bad as it could.  We have everything you can imagine stuck on it.  That's how ours was growing up, and that's the way I still like it, with all the memories all over it.  While we were decorating it, I took some pics of my favorite ornaments.

All the baby's first Christmas ornaments (l to r) Jackson, Parker, Everett, Mia

A few of the places we've visited

And last but not least, my very favorites.  All the ones the kids made with their own hands.  Love it!

So there you have it, the Griswold Robison family Christmas tree.  Hey, someone cut the top of the tree off in this picture and you can't even see the new star!  Who would do such a thing?!☺  Happy Holidays!


Monday, November 21, 2011

A Tree House Feast

     Today was Parker's preschool Thanksgiving lunch.  He has been anticipating this day for weeks because they each got to bring an ingredient and help make the meal.  So, in he marched this morning with his sour cream, ready to roll up his sleeves and get started.  Technically it was a "parents only" type of event, but Jeremy is taking off work a day early for a trip to Montgomery on Wednesday, so Nana was my honorary husband today.  And then, of course, there's Everett.  At Tree House they have a huge room where they eat lunch and have play time.  On one wall of this room are trucks and tractors.  I'm talking shelves and shelves of trucks and tractors.  Guess what Everett's favorite thing just happens to be right now?  We walk in, he turns to the right, and all we hear is "TRACTOR, TRACTOR, TRACTOR!"  He never even sat down to eat.  All he wanted was to play those trucks.
     Meanwhile, Nana and I took a seat at the table to wait on Parker's class to come in.  And in they marched with their feathered headbands, ready to show us what they worked so hard on all morning.  Parker told us he stirred the cranberries and smashed the potatoes.  We had turkey, corn, "smashed" potatoes, cranberry sauce, bread, popcorn, and apples.  It was all very good.  After lunch all the kids lined up to sing a few songs for all the parents.  Parker loves learning all the songs, and he's constantly putting on a show for us at home.  Somehow when it's showtime at school he always manages to hide behind another kid, but I did manage to get a couple of pictures this time.  I am truly thankful for Tree House.  It is really a blessing for our Parker to be able to go to such a great place where he's learning so much.  I am also thankful for his teachers.  It really makes a difference when you know the teachers want to be there, and they're not just there to "work".  I know this will make all the difference when he starts kindergarten in August, and I love watching him learn new things every day!

Parker class coming in for lunch

 Nana and Parker


Typical picture of Parker. Someone trying to wrestle him down, the person with the camera trying to get him to smile, him listening to nobody and making crazy faces.

Enjoying a tasty lunch

Thanksgiving songs

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Week 47 - Christmas card photos gone wild

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Death of a Star

     Last night we got our tree up and lights on.  We're saving ornaments for tonight.  Yes, I'm one of those who puts all my Christmas out before Thanksgiving.  In my defense, this is not the earliest I've ever done it AND it's way to much work (in my opinion) to put it all up and take it back down all in the same month AND I need time for a 2 year old and a puppy to get used to not tearing things off of it AND I've got to have somewhere to put all my wrapped presents, right?  So, the tree is up.  Which brings me to a sore subject.  The star . . .

     Long ago, when we were first married and barely had the money to buy our first Christmas tree, Jeremy picked out this star.  My only excuse is that I must have been so blinded by love that I agreed to whatever he picked.  After all, he was the head of our home, so how fitting that he pick the star that would sit on the top of our tree?  This star had it all: tinsel, silver shiny foil-like accents, tiny plastic stars, and lights.  Oh, the lights.  Not only did they glow, they blinked.  Yes, our tree had become a beacon for all things tacky and from the 70's.  In fact, a few years later I wondered why (in 2001) they were even still making stars like this.  As the kids came along, I persuaded them to join my side in this "star" war.  Every year I would cross my fingers that the ole star would shine no more.  Well, that year is now.  Jeremy excitedly pulled the star from the attic last night and plugged it in, only to be disappointed.  He even changed out the fuses in hopes that it would revive it.  No luck.  After all these years this star has become kind of a tradition in itself.  Me and all the kids standing around while Jeremy plugs it into the top of the tree, most of us cheering for it not to work, then booing when it began to blink.  I feel kind of sad about it all now.  It makes me think back to that first Christmas, when it was just the two of us in a ratty apartment, without a dime to our names, sitting on our hand-me-down couch and laughing about that star.  I don't think I can ever bring myself to throw it out.  I can't believe I'm saying this, but I may even put it in my curio with all my other Christmas things.
     So, today we will go shopping for a new star.  And inevitably we will let Jeremy choose the one he wants.  Our fingers are crossed that maybe the star making companies have updated their patterns in 2011!  Wish us luck!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Veteran's Day

     Last night the 4th grade had a Veteran's Day program and it was wonderful.  They began it with the pledge and anthem, and the children who had relatives on active duty got to lead it.  I can only imagine what it must be like to have a loved one fighting for our country, but I'm so glad that they do.  Lots of kids brought in photographs of their relatives who have served in the armed forces, and they put on a slide show with all of them.  This must have been another "note home" that I missed.  Otherwise I would have sent in Jackson's great grandfather's pictures.  My dad's dad and Jeremy's mom's dad both served in the Navy during WWII.  All the classes sang The Armed Forces Medley, where each branch's song was played.  Afterward all the veteran's stood and the kids gave them cards that they had made, which said thank you for serving our country.  This is one of my favorite shows the kids have done so far.  I hope as my kids grow up and see their friends make the decision to defend our freedom, that Veteran's Day will become more than just another "day off".  That they'll realize how costly their freedom really can be.

Part of Jackson's class with their teacher, Mrs. Daniel

Jackson and Dawson

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Week 45 - Wish this was in my yard.  I love fall!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Fun Weekend

     Friday night Mia had a movie night at dance.  And yes, I just realized I forgot to blog about our transition from gymnastics to dance.  Mia wanted to do something a little more graceful, and frankly a little closer to the ground, so she is now taking ballet and tap at Next Generation in Muscle Shoals.  She loves it, especially getting to dress up and dance with her friends.  No, I don't even have a picture of her in her dance duds.  I must be slacking a little lately due to pre holiday "to do's".  So, Ms Laura had all the girls come to the studio in their pj's to watch a movie Friday night and Mia was so excited to go.  They popped popcorn and took their sleeping bags.  When I went to pick her up she said she'd had a great time but she almost fell asleep!  I guess when you've been at school all day that tends to happen when you finally sit still.
     Saturday our neighbor Ms Margo had a few families over for a fun afternoon.  We ate and played until almost dark.  The kids ran around for hours, so they were good and tired at bedtime.  We always have a great time when we go to her house.  Now we are gearing up for another week of work and school, but I'm so glad to have weekends like this with my family.

Getting ready to sack race

Apple bobbing

3 legged race

The girls won every time

Everett playing football with daddy

Garrett and Parker


Target practice

Cookie time