Saturday, December 31, 2011

Wild Nights: NYE 2012.

Happy New Years to all of our dear friends and family.  We wish you a happy and healthy 2012!

As we ponder the New Years of old, we think of big parties, overflowing drinks, dancing and dawn-induced bedtimes.  That was all BC (before children).  Now we party hard from 4 pm - 7 pm (we can only last until Simone's bedtime).   We celebrated NYE with the Tobin family:  Tracy, Roxie, Livi and Parks.  We partied it up kiddie-style with sippy-cups and toys.  Don't worry, the adults did partake in whiskey and wine.  And after we got home (at 7 pm), Bob and Mimi even stopped down for an ice cold Stella.  Then, Dirk and I treated ourselves to steamed crab, asparagus and Stella.

Signing off at 10 pm.  Please keep the noise down :).  Happy 2012!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Very Merry Christmas 2012

We had a wonderful Christmas.  We were able to celebrate with family, spend some quality time together and presents were aplenty!  We celebrated with the Swansons on 12.18.  Santa made a surprise visit to Bobby and Mimi's house.  Cullen answered the door, threw his arms in the air, and exclaimed "SANTA!!!".  Simone, on the other hand, wanted nothing do to with the man in red.  She was fine at the mall, but that Santa sat quietly on a chair as she approached.  This time, Santa came in shouting "HO, HO, HO" and ringing a bell.  Simone lost it every time we even moved 2 inches closer to Santa.  She was happiest sitting on Mimi's lap on the other side of the room. 

On Christmas Eve, Cullen had fun putting out carrots and Reindeer food and making Santa a plate of cookies (complete with a glass of milk).  On Christmas morning, the kids actually allowed Dirk and I to sleep until 6 am (that's late for us!).  And we spent the morning opening presents and playing with toys.  Santa brought Cullen a tool bench and a piano.  Simone received a doll stroller.  And Santa left a kid-sized tee-pee for both. Then, Grandpa Mark, Grandma Liz, Brigette and Mason ventured down for Christmas night.  We had a great time playing and teaching Mark and Liz how to use their new IPad!

Now it's operation, Where-do-we-put-all-of-these-toys?!  We are lucky and grateful to have had such a nice holiday.  Special thanks to Bob, Mimi, Grandpa Mark and Grandma Liz.  You are wonderful grandparents! 

Time for stringing lights and stitches?!

2 noteworthy things happened last week:  we decorated our house for Christmas and Cullen Robert Swanson got his second head laceration requiring stitches.  I will start first with the stringing of the lights.  We are big fans of getting a "real" tree.  We opted out of the tree farm experience this year as the kids are still so young and it just seemed like a lot of work.  Therefore, in the dark of night (7 pm), Cullen and Dirk set out to the lot next to the Kwik Trip gas station to pick out a tree.  When they got it home, Dirk and I noticed that it didn't look very symmetrical, but agreed it would be fine once the branches dropped.  After 24 hours, the tree didn't look any better.  We decided that every tree needs a little love (even the not-so-pretty ones).  We couldn't be happier with our Charlie Brown Christmas tree and realize that's what you get when you allow a three-year-old to pick out the tree at the lot next to the gas station in the dark! 

Now onto the stitches....  Cullen was playing outside on the playground equipment at the YMCA daycare.  There is a tire in the climbing wall, and Cullen hit his forehead just right on the frozen tire and suffered a pretty deep gash.  By the time I got to him, his teacher had stopped the bleeding; she gave Cullen a Popsicle; and we were off the the ER.  Cullen wasn't crying when I saw him, but he had a scared look on his face.  Once we got to the ER, his first question to the nurse was "are you going to give me a shot?"  (He is obviously traumatized from our flu shots earlier this fall.)  She told him "No" and he was at ease.   Dirk met us in the ER shortly after arrival and his first words were "this kid is going to look like a prize fighter!"  They put some numbing gel on the cut and then a very nice doctor came in and stitched him up.  Three stitches to be precise.  Cullen never even cried.  I think it may have been the promise of  lunch at "Old McDonald's" that helped him stay so calm.  After five days, he got those stitches out and he's looking a lot better. 

Monday, December 5, 2011

"Santa's Rap" - Starring Cullen.

"Jingle Bell Rock" - Starring Simone.

Holiday Cheer.

Cullen and Simone, along with cousins Jameson and Quinn, starred in the 2011 YMCA Daycare Holiday Show.  The long-awaited day arrived and the kids got dressed in their best Christmas clothes.  Quinn's class danced to "All I want for Christmas is a Hippopotamus".  Simone's performance came next - a rousing rendition of "Jingle Bell Rock."  Simone wasn't quite sure what to make of the crowded gym and rows of spectators.  She took her role very serious:  ringing bells and blowing on her kazoo.  Jameson marched in waving a holiday flag and sang "Jingle Bells".  Cullen's class sang two songs acapella "Santa Claus is Coming" and "Happy Holidays".  And the grand finale was "Sana's Rap".  Cullen mastered all the accompanying dance moves - complete with the crowd-pleasing booty shake.  I hope you enjoy the pics and videos as much as we enjoyed the live show!

Saturday Night Live.

.The Swanson Family had one busy and exciting weekend.  Friends stopped over to Casa Swanson on Saturday afternoon for pizza and to prepare for the Badgers to take on Michigan State in the Big Ten Championship.  While the kids kept the noise levels elevated in the early part of the night, the adults took over later on.