Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I failed at taking many pictures of Christmas because we were busy, busy, busy having way too much fun!  Santa came by and ate the brownies, took some carrots, and left a lot of presents.  Shyla even asked, "but what about those times when I made bad decisions?"  Well, sweetie, the good definitely out weighed the bad.  Shyla got the Easy-Bake she wanted and Harper got the bike that Shyla wanted her to have.

Then we went to Grandma and Grandpa's house for breakfast and to open the presents that Santa left there.  There was much excitement, but the kids did a great job taking turns and waiting (fairly) patiently.
Later we went to Grandma Barbara and Grandpa Pop's house and stayed for the majority of the day. 

We are so lucky to have our family in town to be able to spend these special days.

This picture wasn't on Christmas but it shows Harper's beautiful tape creation:

And New Years - here's Pancake getting ready for our exciting night.

2013 was a great year!  I hope 2014 is just as blessed.  I hope to blog more frequently although I know I will be super busy with my new job and my master's program.  I also hope to continue to make special memories with my girls that we will all treasure forever.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Christmas Eve 2013

After arriving back from Pinetop around 2PM or so, we headed over to Auntie Chelsea's house at 4:30PM for a Christmas Eve dinner.  We had yummy lasagna and lots of good conversation with family (including a convo about why we should all eat brains ... no thank you!)

The kids opened their (now) annual Christmas Eve Box which contained new jammies for each, marshmallows for hot cocoa, and a beautiful version of the book Twas the Night Before Christmas.

They put on the jammies and Harper spilled her cocoa on them within about 3 sips.  Then, as the night went on - it was too loud and rowdy to read the book.  That was a bummer, but it was still a fin evening!

Then at home (late!) we got Harper to sleep then Shyla and I got the goodies ready for Santa and the Reindeer.  I had already made brownies (I'm a regular day Betty Crocker) so we set them out with a mug of milk and some carrots.

Up next - Christmas Day 2013!

Saturday, December 28, 2013


We recently got back from a really great vacation in Pinetop.  Here's how we looked on the way up:

Once we got the cabin, we started getting comfortable.  Unfortunately for us three of the heaters weren't working so the first night was really, really uncomfortable, mostly for me and Stevie.

Harper was a it unsure of the snow and preferred her time inside drinking cocoa by the fire.

The girls worked together to decorate this beautiful gingerbread house!

And then Shyla and Stevie spent hours sledding the backyard.

Here's what's interesting: the girls' behavior while on this trip was less than ideal and thus it was a really stressful couple days.  But, we've been back for less than 5 days and all I can remember are the good parts of the trip and all the fun we had. 

The Magical Mystical Candy-cane Forest

We were recently invited back to the magical, mystical candy-cane forest.  As always, the journey began at the snowglobe where I was able to catch this picture of the head-elf with three of the elfins.

The fourth elfin was off doing this instead:

The elfins closely examined the map before leading us on our adventure.

Once we arrived the kiddos picked the candy-canes and slim-jims from the magical tree and we all enjoyed delicious chili, cornbread, and incredibly strong eggnog shakes.

Elfin John and Sharon are some of the sweetest people we know and we are so very lucky that they have been neighbors with my parents for nearly 35 years.  They put on this event for our kiddos each year and it has become one of the traditions that we value the most.

Christmas Tree Shopping - and meeting Santa

As always, Stevie won our annual fight and we, once again, bought a real Christmas tree.  It was another exhausting experience in which I got to chase the kids around while he closely examined two identical trees.  But at least I got to take a few pictures of the girls.

Then, a few days later we got to meet Santa and Mrs. Clause and even eat pancakes with them.  It was a {free} PTA sponsored event at my new school.  Again, it was exhausting because I mainly chased Harper around and pulled her down off of things, all while trying to make a good impression at my new site!

As expected, Shyla was really excited to meet them and stood in line nicely ... until we actually got up there, then she got timid,

Thursday, December 26, 2013

New Job!?!?

Did I forget to mention my big news?  I got a new job and I am super excited!  Third time is a charm but, truly, everything happens for a reason.  After not getting hired at my middle school (6-8) nor our K-12 school, I've been hired as Assistant to the Principal at one of our elementary (preK-5) schools!  {Ideal setting for a budding administrator, in my opinion}

I start on January 6th so I have officially said goodbye to my students and to classroom teaching.  Tomorrow Stevie and I are going to take my things from my classroom and set-up my office (which conveniently overlooks the playground where Harper will be a preschooler next year!)

I am very thankful for all the support I've received over the years from all my administrators and I think they've all set great examples for me.  I'm also incredibly blessed to have such a supportive husband and parents who all really step-up with the girls while I finish up my leadership degree.  I think this is going to be a challenge that I will really enjoy and be good at - once I learn what the heck I am doing!  I can tell I'm going to love my principal and I know I will learn a lot from her and her experiences.  Stay tuned.

PS - the picture with this post is me with my "congratulations - I can't believe you won't be on CIMI this year" coffee.  Thanks, DH!

Thanksgiving 2013

Yep, this post is long overdue.  We had a great Thanksgiving and we have more to be thankful for than I could ever contain in one blog.
A few days before Thanksgiving we hosted dinner at our house for Auntie Kirsten, Uncle Jim, Simone and Sophia, Grandpa Steve, and Grandma and Grandpa, and the Yager clan.  It was a full house but a lot of fun to see everybody.

On the actual holiday we had our traditional dinner at my parents house - complete with all the craziness we are used to.  I didn't take many pictures but the girls really got into whipping the cream.

Having healthy, happy kids is always at the top of my Thankful List!  We sure are lucky and blessed!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Two More Classes Down!

The fall semester just finished up, along with another two classes.  Critical Issues was a class I took online.  It was just okay.  It wasn't overly challenging, but I also didn't get all that much out of it, unfortunately.  The personnel class was one of my favorites.  I'm learning that one of the biggest parts of an administrative role is dealing with personnel - so this class really addressed the rules and regulations of doing so.  It, also, wasn't too demanding but it was interesting and worth-while.
Up next: a 5-week winter class.

Shopping with Kids...

Shopping with kids can be ... challenging, to say the least.  This time of year, however, it is somewhat inevitable.  But, lucky for me my (goofy) kids don't mind holding hands with strangers while I check-out.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

School Pictures ~ Fall 2013

As if I don't take enough pictures, the girls both have biannual picture days at their respective school.  Which I love!  Here they are, in all their glory:

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Mom Fail #1728

On Mondays, Stevie gets the girls after school because I have class until 9PM so I don't actually see them until Tuesday morning.  Here's a conversation I had with Shyla on Tuesday morning:

SHYLA: Mama, I didn't eat my lunch yesterday.
ME: What?  Why not?
SHYLA: It was our Thanksgiving Feast and you forgot and you were supposed to bring juice and come eat with me.
ME:  [not sure what I said but I'm sure it was filled with apologies and perhaps a few tears]
SHYLA: But don't worry, Mommy.  Taylor's mommy did not forget so I got to sit with Taylor.

(The picture above is after she fell while skipping on the playground ... something about a giant rock getting caught under her shoe ...)

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Dear Santa,

Here is Shyla's letter to Santa this year.

Dear Santa,
Please bring me a easy bake and Harpey a bike.

There are so many things I love about this letter!
  • I love that she wrote it herself for the first time!
  • I love that she said "please"
  • I love that she thought of Harpey too
And then there's the one thing that I don't love about this letter:
  • Easy Bake Oven!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Vail County Fair

We spent the morning at the Vail County Fair.  It was low-key and just a nice way to spend some quality time together and get out of the house.  I ran into a good number of students and colleagues since our district is such an integral part of the community.

We ended our time there with Orange Cream yogurt smoothies and some play time in the grass.  All-in-all it was a lovely day!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

New Jammies. New Perspective.

Last Friday was pajama day at Shyla's school.  While getting ready for school in the morning, Shyla chose some capri pants and a t-shirt - I reminded her about pajama day, but she was adamant about wearing what she chose. 

About half-way to school she realized her mistake.  And-lost-it.  Completely.

Needless to say, drop-off was complete disaster.  Crocodile tears, clinging onto my leg, begging me not to go.

Now, as you know, I'm generally pretty strict with my girls, but something about this incident really got to me.  So, mom of the year that I am, I rescheduled 2 appointment, and headed out to Walmart on my plan period to pick up some jammies.  Of course, she was fine by the time I got there (and I knew that would be the case) but I think she will always remember the day her mom brought her jammies to school.

My Pantry!

The previous owners of our house had some sort of bar right in the middle of the house.  As you can see, for us, it was was equally ugly and wasteful.

We got an estimate from Lowes to have doors built - to the tune of $1200!  Yikes!  I was ready to sign that contract and get it done, but of course that was not going to fly with Stevie.

He started the project about 2 months ago.  Yes, a lot of time went into the project ... but only about $300.  And it is beautiful!  Check it out - and of course be sure to notice the little helper who was imperative to the project.