Monday, December 31, 2012

The Whereabouts of Walker 2

Yes, we have an Elf on the Shelf. It is one of my favorite traditions during the Christmas season. His name is Walker and this year was his second year to visit the Snyder house. If you follow me on Instagram you know all about Walker's antics- this year he might have been a little less creative than last year, but a certain 4 year old LOVED every minute of it. He would squeal in the mornings when he found him. Most days they are all still in bed when I leave for work and if that happened he would make his daddy take a picture of Walker and text it to me so I could be in on the fun- love his heart! Last year my mother in law made a Shutterfly book with all Walker's spots and it is a year round favorite around here. So I took a picture of Walker each day in hopes of another book. (HintHint Grammy!)

Just in case you are not familiar with the Elf on the Shelf, it is a little doll that acts as a scout elf for Santa. He or she shows up sometime during the Christmas season to monitor children's behavior and report back to Santa each night. Part of the fun of the elf is that children are not allowed to touch him in fear that he may loose his magic. It is so much fun each day to find out where the elf has placed himself upon his return from the North Pole. There is a book that goes along with the elf that explains the story and this year there was merchandise everywhere. Shep even got in on the action this year which made me even more excited for the years to come. Walker is quite the behavior motivator and fun too.  If you have small children and do not have an elf I would highly recommend it.

Day One- Walker Arrived.

Clark spotted him! He was so excited that his buddy was back.

Here are some of the other fun places we found Walker each day. All these pictures are from my phone and there is not one from each day, just most.

Another fun tradition we have is to open a Christmas book each night in December. Walker arrived one morning with all the wrapped books.

Walker checking out his book from last year's antics.

This was the day. This was the day Shepard took an interest in Walker and decided to pick him up and carry them around. I only found about about this because of the screams. Clark spotted the whole thing and was beside himself. He was in tears that Walker would lose his magic. No worries. We were headed to see Santa the next day and Clark told him all about it. Santa ensured Clark that it was okay and that Shepard was a baby and did not understand the magic. Crisis averted. shew!

This was the morning of the church Christmas program. Clark played the part of the camel.:)

Walker brought an advent calendar my mom made for Clark.
(This was soooo cute. She spray painted a muffin tin and filled each one with little treats like candy, tiny toys and stickers. He LOVED it. )

Walker brought plush elves that would be safe to touch. BIG HIT. Especially with Shep.

Walker decorated the tree with Clark's undies. ha!

This one lead to lots of laughter. We woke up to him shrieking- it was so cute.

On his last night he reminded us the true meaning of the season.

As you can see, we love Walker. He is a lot of fun and brought many smiles over the last month or so. Needless to say  we will be excited to see him again next November. Do you have a scout elf?

Friday, December 21, 2012

The List.

Christmas is in 5 days. FIVE. I cannot believe it. No, I am not completely done shopping- but I am only a few gift cards away from done. Well...I thought I was anyway. I thought we were finished shopping for Clark last month. He would never really tell us anything specific he wanted for Christmas other than EVERYTHING he sees on TV. Nothing really stuck out and he does not have a favorite of anything. He plays with different things all the time and is not really obsessed with anything these days. So we have picked up things here and there that I thought he would like, that would last and that did not have 1,000,000 pieces or parts. We THOUGHT we were done. We thought that until today. Today we finally made it out to see Santa and Mrs. Claus. Clark has seen this Santa each year and we nearly missed him this year, but we heard they were going to be at a local, family owned pharmacy so you had better believe we were there. Before we left Clark wanted to make a list to give to Santa. So we did.  He told me what to write and I did and then he copied. He was very determined and it was beyond adorable.
Here is the finished product:

"Dear Santa,
I would like a power ranger toy, a ninja toy and Spiderman shoes.
Love, Clark"

I mean how cute is that? Upside down w's, backwards d's and giant dots on the i's and all. I just love it. He read it to Santa and then thank goodness Santa told us he had it memorized and he gave us the list back! I get to keep it forever. Not sure if it is normal to be this excited about a list to Santa, but I just love seeing his little handwriting. I just want to frame it.

On another note- we have ZERO of these items in our stockpile. I am not a fan of characters on shoes or clothing so I do not think Santa will be picking up the Spiderman shoes, but I guess he might be on the lookout for the ninjas or power rangers. Nothing fancy but maybe a few to tuck in the stocking. We shall see.

Speaking of the Santa visit, Shep was not a fan this time and we had to do a redo session because the first time he was crying so hard I got ZERO pictures trying to console him. I was doing this solo as Stuart was out of town for work and it was not that simple to wrangle them all into the lap of the big guy, get Clark to talk, and keep Shep breathing because he was crying so hard. So we stuck around until there was no line and tried again so I could capture a few on my phone. I could not even begin to use my good camera. They did have a photographer and I hope that he got some good ones. I got a few and everyone got out alive. I might have been a sweaty mess once we finally got into the car and everyone buckled into carseats, but I did my best. We even had to explain to Santa about Shepard touching Walker since Clark was beside himself and beyond upset that Walker would lose his magic. Santa reassured him that it was okay and that Shepard was a baby and did not know any better. It was the best news Clark heard all week.

Here are a few I snapped on my phone during the madness:

Five days people! Enjoy each one.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Blue Santa and a Parade

Things are wild around here as usual, but I am pretty stoked that we only have six school days until Christmas break. I have been overwhelmed with the daily routines lately that when I get all the kids in bed I am down for the count by 9:30 each night, that is usually after sleeping on the couch for at least 30 minutes. I have neglected the blog, put off many Christmas gifts with half filled carts all over cyberspace because I start and lose the urge halfway through and go to bed. I have missed two holiday parties because I have lost track of days in the week for no good reason other than total exhaustion. We missed a Santa party this Sunday and we were home! I think a few weeks off will be much needed to give my poor brain a break. I know being home with all three kiddos all day will not be a "break", but my mind will  only be in mommy/wife mode, not mommy/wife/teacher/parole officer/problem solver/ mode. My brain needs a rest. I love my class, but there are thirty of them. Many of them are very needy and my own kids are very needy of course so as great as it is to be needed, I NEED a break.

We have been in full Christmas mode around here. I have been on tree patrol as Sara Kate loves to carry ornaments around the house and put them in places they do not belong. She also lost Mary Ann. "Mary Ann" is the Mary from a nativity scene that was my grandmothers. I use to call her Mary Ann- you know Mary Ann and Joseph when I was little. I carted her off one day and she was missing for years. mother like daughter. Mary Ann is missing and SK is the only one who knows what happened to her. Hoping we find her someday soon. Other than that they have not been overly interested in the decor.

We did get to see Santa once a few weeks ago. Not just any Santa, but Wildcat blue UK Santa! The little Snyders were not phased by the big guy, but Clark was super shy. He did not sit on his lap, and could not think of anything he wanted. It was very unlike him so I was hoping he would get a second chance to see the big guy, but at this rate it is not looking that promising. Momma can't keep the days straight. We will see if it happens. Check us out decked out in our blue and white.

We also had the fun evening of walking in the Christmas parade with Clark's school. Yours truly walked in front of the float with the school banner. As I was walking and waving to EVERY.SINGLE kid from my school I did wonder for a minute if it was a conflict of interest for me a public school teacher to be proudly carrying the banner for Clark's Montessori school, but nah. I did not worry too much about it. His teacher out did herself AGAIN with another adorable float. They won the float contest of our town's Festival of the Horse Parade in October and this time it was super cute again. The made the float look like a Christmas tree lot and the kids dressed up like snow people. It was beyond adorable. They sang Christmas songs and were a big hit with the crowd. My little snowman was a big hit with me.

I mean look at these:

Tonight I'm watching The Voice, should be wrapping up some gifts on Shutterfly and finishing all the addresses on our Christmas cards. Stuart is working upstairs and the Snyder children are in bed and I am trying very hard to stay up past 9:00! :) I mean we are a wild bunch.

Thanks for sticking around and reading this blog even though I can't keep up with it as much as I would like. I have a few things to blog about like our little walkers, saying goodbye to the infant seats, and my first trip to IKEA. But for now, I will get back to the Christmas cards.

Happy Monday!!

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