Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Weekly Happenings #297 (December 1-7)-- Getting in the Christmas Spirit

I still can't believe that December is HERE. We kicked off the month with several fun activities, which was wonderful. We also participated in the protests one night and that was really powerful.

Peyton had switched days and was off on Monday and it was a super low key day. I had been feeling under the weather and I think I needed it. I slept late and then got my bath and had breakfast. I spent most of the later morning and early afternoon working on our Christmas card. Our WiFi was messed up so I kept having set backs. Around mid afternoon, Peyton took the kids and went grocery shopping. I cleaned around the house and finished the card. They got back and we all relaxed and played and then I let them open some presents my mom had sent them.

We try not to make a huge deal of presents at Christmas and Minnie has been so sweet to honor that. She sent the kids a big package and a note telling them how thankful she is for them since we just celebrated Thanksgiving. Annie got dress up shoes, a tea set, hair clips, and paper dolls. Graves got some dinos, an airplane, and a tractor. And they both got books. I got some Peppermint Bark and a beautiful little Christmas surprise from Batte. Peyton got their blessing to move their favorite people twelve hundred miles to chase a dream. So they're no longer obligated to give him gifts for anything ever again. 
AP: "I never want to go to a circus. Too crowded." Peyton: "but some crowded things are sometimes really fun...like a Bruce Springsteen concert." AP: "Well, I would love *that*". She's the best. We were debating a Christmas festivity in the city. In the rain. Like I said, she's the best. 

We fed and bathed them and got them to bed. I uploaded pictures, did laundry, and blogged some.

Peyton was actually working Tuesday since he had switched it for Monday (we had planned to have dinner with friends but it fell through). The kids got up around eight thirty and we watched their shows and had breakfast. They played and I planned school, got on the computer, scooped liter, folded up the bed, and took my bath. I read to them and we did their catechism, devotion and some memory work that I decided to add in. Then we cleaned up their room and it was time for lunch.

 I was planning to take them both to Cumbe (a parent has to participate in Graves's class), but there was rain in the forecast so I decided we wouldn't. I got Graves settled and did a few things on the computer. The rain seemed like it wasn't going to happen after all and I decided we'd go to the "children's tableau" at Calvary. I wasn't planning to partly because there was a potluck afterwards and there was noway I could manage bringing food on the subway. Well, I got an email reminder and it seemed way more low key than I realized. I hustled and did English with Annie and then we all got ready and left. It was sprinkling and for some reason the carrier was really bothering my hips (maybe it was too low, that's never happened before?). We made it though, and it was really fun. The kids just dressed up in whatever (Annie was a unicorn and Graves was a fox) and Jake told the story of the first Christmas in a really sweet, beautiful way. After that, there was caroling and desserts.
 You can be anything you want in the impromptu live nativity- even a mystical creature and a tie clad fox. "Revend Jake" as Graves calls him shared the Christmas story so beautifully + communion + sweet treats and fellowship afterwards. Pretty great night!

We stuck around a bit and then headed home. It was close to nine when we got home and I really wanted to get math in. We did than and then I fed the kids. Peyton got home and I got the kids ready for bed and read to them a LOT. It was ten thirty. I made chili for us, did dishes, and sent an email and went to bed.

Peyton was working on Wednesday. The kids got up around nine thirty and then we watched shows and had breakfast. I did my chores and planned school, ate breakfast and got on the computer, and took my bath.
They're looking at a "Find Curious George" book Minnie sent. I heard Annie say "Yeeees! Very good job, Graaaaaves!"

I played with the kids and then we did their morning stuff (devotion, catechism, and memory work). We picked up and I fed them lunch. I printed out some Advent ornaments and put up dishes and put Graves down. I got on the computer breifly and took a short name and then did school with Annie. English took longer than usual so I let Graves get up and do some with us. We did math next and he cut AND traced. We did his critical thinking and read some in our Five in a Row book and then I fixed them supper. I cleaned out the microwave and worked on glueing the cards I had printed to cardstock. We read some more and did their Advent reading and I got them to bed. I cleaned up their table and did dishes and then I ate supper and watched China Beach. Peyton got home and we talked and then I finished the episode. We chatted and I got on the computer.

Peyton was off on Thursday and we had a great day. We got up early and got ready and headed to the Bronx. They were really low on help so Peyton and I had the babies by ourselves. It went well, though. We had lunch at our favorite Mexican place and Graves fell asleep on the way home.
Nothing like your first {virgin} daiquiri! And we enjoyed amazing food, per usual, at our favorite Mexican place in the South Bronx (and the city).

We all rested and I got on the computer and took a short nap. Peyton took Annie to ballet and I did a few things and got ready and then woke up Graves. We met Peyton and Annie at the train station near ballet and headed into the city for a protest. We stayed awhile and ended up meeting up with some friends.
Peyton and I neither one took any pictures. We talked about it afterward and had both felt similarly convicted about it without having discussed it. But I think it's another New York memory I'll have forever. It was really powerful telling our small people that our friends were hurting and that we want to use our voices (and our ears) to help them. 

We rode the train home with them and fed the kids dinner and got them to bed. I talked to my mom and Ellis and ate supper and got on the computer a bit.
So we got the Ann Voskamp Advent book and I am LOVING it (if you dig The Jesus Storybook Bible, you probably will). To be honest it's a little to "metaphorical" and literary even for AP. I asked her the question about God helping her in a flood and she asked me to explain what it meant a little more. I told her it was just a very deep pain, a strong sadness. She looked at me very seriously and said "I have felt that way before....when I had to say goodbye to Aubrey when we visited Mississippi". Whew. Guess she's been dealing with a little homesickness, too.

Peyton was off again on Friday and we ended up having another low key day at home. He went to a men's prayer group but the kids were still watching their shows in bed with me when he got home. We had breakfast and I got my bath and we just had a slow morning. We had lunch and then I folded a bunch of laundry and Peyton went to the storage unit.
You know how some people are guilty of using the TV as a babysitter (we've been at times)? I think we're guilty of using the bathtub as a babysitter. It was another dreary day in Brooklyn and the kids had passed the two hour mark of playing with dinos in the tub. We recently stopped joint baths, but they wanted one so bad. I was going to suggest swimsuits, but Peyton insisted underwear would be sufficient (he used to bathe with Annie in his boxers for funsies when she was about Graves's age).

We did our "morning" school stuff and Peyton made hot chocolate and we had a little dance party and then I did English and math with Annie. It took WAY longer than usual and I was doing laundry in between. The kids had super around eight and I had promised Annie they could help me decorate for Christmas. We got it all out and they helped some and then we got them ready for bed and I read to them. After they went to bed, I got on the computer and ate dinner and cleaned up around the house. I finished decorating and sent an email and went to bed.

Peyton worked Saturday. The kids got up and we watched their shows and had breakfast and then they played while I did my morning chores, took my bath, and had my breakfast. I played with them for a good bit and then fed them lunch. I put Graves down and ate my lunch, rested a bit, and got on the computer. He got up and we did math and read and then cleaned up their room. I fed them supper and then started getting them ready for bed. Peyton got home and we read to them together. I got on the computer and uploaded pictures to Facebook and wrote a blog post.

Sunday was so great. We got up and all got ready and headed to Trinity Grace. It was a great service. We came home and rested a bit and ate lunch and then got ready for the candlelight service at Saint George's. It was also really wonderful.
Truly beautiful candlelight service at the gorgeous historic Saint George's. Enchanting setting, perfect lighting, amazing music. And of course, the bold proclamation of the Gospel. 

We stopped by the grocery store on the way home and Peyton made a pizza with dough from Trader Joe's.
When it drops below forty, your papa squishes you into the carrier in your puffy coat. But sometimes your fam gets in a in a hurry and doesn't put sister's old leggings under your jon jon and everyone has failed to take care of your baby legs.

We read to the kids and got them to bed and watched a movie. I straightened around the apartment and got on the computer and went to bed.

It was a great start to the month and I can tell it will be such a special one.

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