The end of 2009 and the first week of 2010 have been hectic (but that's pretty normal around here). Let me recap the highlights.
Just as 2009 was winding down, we were surprised with the delivery of a lovely flower arrangement which fancied up our table for New Year's...thanks, Dale and Laura! We miss you guys.
We celebrated Craig's birthday on Dec. 30. The kids and I spent the day wrapping Dad's gifts, decorating the dining room with streamers, and baking a red velvet cake. I ordered a sushi platter for Mom and Dad and Chinese takeout for the kids who are sushi-challenged. After dinner, Dad blew out the candles on his cake and opened his presents. After a full year of birthdays celebrated, Aniyar and Madiyar can now sing "Happy Birthday" in English...and also the Risley family birthday song that goes like this:
Blow out the candles on your cake and make a wish
We'll have everybody's favorite dish...Fish!
Happy birthday, happy happy birthday!
It's your party but we'll have all the fun, HEY!!!
The children and I spent New Year's Eve day at Coco Key, an indoor waterpark. It was a blast and a nice break from the winter weather here (inside the park, it's summer at 82 degrees...outside 25 degrees and lots of snow) After about 4 hours of waterslide, tubing, and playing water basketball, the kids were worn out.
Our 5 were content to eat an early dinner (steakburgers and homemade turkey soup)and then watch movies while Mom and Dad had a nice grown-up dinner (this means we ate entirely too many vegetables for our kids' tastes) with our friends, Rick and Deb.
We told the kids they could stay up to greet the New Year and 4 of the 5 of them made it to midnight...Aniyar tried his best but finally passed out cold and was deposited into his bed around 10pm.
At about 11:30, the 4 crazy grown-ups put on our swimsuits and climbed into our backyard spa pool in spite of the temperature hovering around 20 degrees. (Sitting in the spa in the winter is actually delightful...it's the getting in and out that takes your breath away.)
When the ball dropped, the kids came outside, throwing streamers and blowing their party horns. We toasted in the New Year with champagne for those of us over 21 and sparkling juices for the rest of the crowd.
We all slept in on New Year's Day, then basically lounged around in our PJ's most of the day. I made my mother's famous turkey croquettes, our traditional New Year's Day dinner.
Over the weekend, we tried out our new snowshoes as we got about 5 inches of fluffy white stuff on Saturday. It was quite an operation getting all of us outfitted with our equipment, into the van and over to the park where we could practice walking in the deeper snow. We had lots of whining from the kids who were a)cold, b)damp, c)mad that they weren't playing videogames, d)hungry, e)needing to use the bathroom. In spite of all protests and some teenage surliness, Craig and I managed to retain our sense of humor and we all ended up having fun for a couple of hours. Just about all protests evaporated when we headed to Wendy's for lunch after our outdoor adventure.
This week, the kids are back to school and as much as we love the holidays, I think we were all ready to return to our normal routine. Max and Aniyar went back to school on Monday while the older kids didn't start until Tuesday. Stuck at home with just us girls and no brothers to play Wii or GameCube with him, Madiyar declared the last day of vacation "...the most boring day ever!" As for me, I still have to take down all the holiday decorations and pack them away. It's funny, I never find time to be bored....
Tanya is on her school’s basketball team and she played her first game on Tuesday. She made a basket, had fun, and her team won. She’s not bored either…grin.