Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas 2011

We had a wonderful time down in VA last week seeing my side of the family and giving Finley some quality cousin time.  As some of you may recall, Finley and his cousin Owen had the same exact due date back in 2009 but with Finley coming early and Owen taking an extended stay on the inside, the boys are just about a month apart.  Friday night and Christmas day, the boys got some time to play together and it was so fun to watch.  Despite their differences, they seemed to be two peas in a pod at times!
The first pict looks like an old polaroid I dug out from the 70s, but it is in fact a picture taken with Dan's apparently ghetto phone camera.   At least someone caught the cuteness on film!
Finley shared his love of the guitar with Owen while we all desperately tried to capture this adorable moment.

Things dissolved from there as we prepped for a family shot...
But luckily my dad was to snap a few photos for the Mixter scrapbook (and our blog!).
Finley also shared his new wooden play menorah with his dear cousin.

Not to be left in the dust by the boys, Owen's little sister, Finley's cousin Natalie got into the action.  Finley was more than happy to include her, he seems to have quite a fondness for small fries these days.
The most surprising part was that Finley was very eager for me to pick up Natalie.  "Mommy hold Na-wie?" he asked over and over until I obliged.
He just loved to get right up into her face and say "Hi Na-wie" over and over. So sweet!
And just when you thought Finley was spoiled enough by cousins, we went over to Dan's cousin Eric's house to see his brood.  Mia is nearly 4 and Jake turned 1 at Thanksgiving.  Eric got most of the pictures that I'll have to steal from him later, but here are Mia and Finley on the swing set.
At one point, Mia hopped off her swing and hopped back on on her belly and I said, "Wow, you're just like Superman" and Mia quickly retorted, "No, I'm Tinkerbell."  Dan and I both laughed and commented how boy-centric our lives have become!!  Here's the goodbye hug that Eric grabbed before we left.
Great Uncle Bernie couldn't be left out so Finley gave him a hearty goodbye handshake!

It was fun to see those guys in their new house, but it was back to Grammy and Granddad's after that to order our Christmas Eve Chinese food!

I didn't take a great deal of other photos, but here are some random shots from our time down there.

Another sepia-like shot from Dan's phone, what a good smile on a crappy camera!
Some day this photo will be on the inside of one of his album covers...thanks for the shot, Aunt Caitlin!
A present from Owen and his family: Zig the Big Rig!
My dad took us on a fun subway/metro adventure one morning and Finley LOVED being on the train!
Grammy, Aunt Caitlin, Finley and I also went to a nearby playground one afternoon and Caitlin showed Finley how to really have fun!
My dad put Finley to work spreading mulch out back and Finley was more than willing to help!
And loading some firewood into the wheelbarrow!
All in all, a wonderful time had by all and Finley continues to ask where his Grammy and Dan-dad are and what they are doing...I think we'll have to see them again soon or I'll run out answers that pacify the determined little guy!
Two takes of the our Forseter trio to end this post, Happy New Year to all!
Dan and I look better in the first, but Finley looks much happier in the second :)

The Last Crazy Night

Before I dive into the lengthy blog about Christmas in VA, I must post the final installment of our Hanukkah celebration.  Last night was the last night of the holiday and we celebrated big.  We filled the menorah and Finley loved seeing the huge flames as we sang the blessings.  He sings along with the first verse and it is so adorable! After singing, it was time to open the final gifts (as if he needed more!) and the first was from Aunt Caitlin to compliment the tricycle she gave him for his birthday.
Yes, his very own astronaut themed helmet that even lights up! He was thrilled to see it and much to our surprise, immediately put it on! Sorry for the blurry photo, but Finley was basically bouncing with excitement.
He then said, "wear it bicycle?" and we headed off to the basement.
He took the helmet for a test drive and seemed quite pleased!  
Later, he and Dan came back upstairs both wearing their bike helmets and Finley handed me mine and said, "Mommy wear it?"  So we all wore our helmets while I finished cooking dinner--safety first!  Thanks, Aunt KK!

Another sports themed gift coming up: our final Hanukkah gift for our little guy was a baseball tee! We cleared some room in the basement and let him try it out.  He wanted to use his big orange bat instead of the smaller, thinner yellow one that came with the tee but still seemed to get the hang of it.

As if the kid's life couldn't get any better, his last gift from his GG and Grandpa was a set of drums (that thankfully have an off button and are quite portable).  He drummed like a pro right away.
But then, he just wanted to dance with his drumsticks to the funky background music.
Happy Hanukkah, Finley, we had a lot of fun celebrating with you!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

1st of 8 Crazy Nights

We kicked off Hanukkah tonight with all the traditional trimmings.  While Dan and Finley entertained themselves in the basement, I started shredding potatoes and onions for some latkes. 
 The boys came up once the deep frying began, but luckily our bowl of dreidels bought me some additional time to cook.
With the latkes keeping warm in the oven, we got our menorahs ready and sat down at the table.
As usual, Finley's favorite part of the pre-meal fesitivies is our singing of the prayers.
We gorged on potato latkes and edamame for dinner and Finley was an eager participant.  For someone who is not an adventurous eater, it was quite enjoyable to watch Finley pick up the latke and just dive in!
Of course, as soon as I push record--Finley changes his tune and fails to cooperate.  Alas, I thought it was cute just to see him in action.  He realizes that he can see the movie/photo after I take it and his patience is pretty thin, thank you world of instant gratification! 
When he was finished, he entertained himself with the wind-up walking dreidel while Dan and I finished.
Next stop on the Hanukkah train, PRESENTS!  Since we are off to Virginia tomorrow, Finley got to  open more than just one gift tonight...and by more than one, I mean A LOT. First up, a spot on gift from Finley daycare provider, Beth.  A new guitar for our future rock star!
After jamming for a bit, he said two guitars and ran to get his other ax.  Can you say "happy camper"?
 A great car racetrack carpet from Great Uncle Bernie and Great Aunt Annette!
Some gel stickers for glass, like our front door. Finley just had to put on ALL the stars and dreidels before moving on to any other gifts. Thank you, Pan-pa and GG!
 Phew, after all that excitement, what more could we do?  Have some chocolate gelt, of course!
 Happy Hanukkah to all!