Saturday, December 31, 2011

Vivian’s Two-Years-Old!

Where in the world did the past two years go?  I have had so much fun getting to know this feisty, fun, sweet, loving, tiny little girl!  How did she get so big?  Vivian Joy loves to get dressed up.  She loves hats, shoes and jackets as well as fun socks and flower barrettes.  She likes to spend her time rocking violently in the rocking chair, playing with baby dolls, building with blocks, driving cars (which she calls go’s) around making vrooming sounds, pretending to cook, loves to help me clean and adores looking at books.  She’s usually dancing, singing, or coloring are generally what she’s doing in conjunction with her activities.  She really is a joy.  Her name Vivian which means lively or life fits her so well and her middle name “Joy” really fits how I feel about her.  She brings me so much joy.  Pink is her favorite color and it fits well with her ultra-feminine persona along with her golden curls and bright blue eyes.  I love that she’s this way.  It’s so darling and just the way she is.



Yes, the is the birthday sign I made last year.  Julie brought some Chinese lanterns to use as decorations that she didn’t know what to do with.


Julie and I also had fun making our own ornaments out of paper for decorations.


Because Vivian loves panda bears, I decided to use my cuddly bear cake pan and make a panda with it.  Of course when I started that idea  I wasn’t even thinking about black frosting.  The smile got crooked but once you touch black frosting against white it stains for good so there it had to stay. Oh well, It was pretty cute.  Julie was a wiz at roses.  I showed her once and she took off.  She made the red ones and I made the pink ones.  It was great to have help.

Here’s a photo Julie took of me after a whole day of frosting a cake.  Not the best of me but it was nice to know that I didn’t look terrible.


Here’s the birthday girl all dressed up.  When she saw those presents she knew exactly that they were to open.


Here she is waiting for her gifts in the birthday chair.


Vivian got a lot of books for her birthday and she wanted to look through them all.IMG_0949

The biggest hit of the evening was Vivian’s little people blocks palace set.  This is a darling photo of Vivian and Kate playing with them together.IMG_0952

Lillian made me laugh when she came down for the party all dressed and ready in PJ’s!  I guess she wanted to be comfortable.  I would have worn the same thing if I had thought it would be okay. Winking smileIMG_0955

Jake visiting with the Wilhelmsen men.IMG_0957

The first moments of Vivian by her cake.  At first she was wondering why I was putting a cake by her.IMG_0958IMG_0959

When we turned the cake to let her look she was so excited she wanted to hug it.  I pretty much melted on the spot.IMG_0962

She got a little nervous once we lit the candles…I love her sidelong gaze.IMG_0964

When we told her to blow out the candles she knew what to do and pretty much dived at them and I had to grab her and hold her back a bit.  Scared me.  What’s with these fearless children of mine?IMG_0965

She looked pretty proud when we clapped for her after that.IMG_0966

I’m hoping Julie has some pictures of Vivian eating her cake because I got a little preoccupied with everything after that. She is such a sweet little girl.  I’m so thankful that she joined our family two years ago.  Even if it was a little sooner than I had expected.  She’s a great addition to our family.

Between Christmas and New Years…

We had a fun, relaxing couple of days between Christmas and New Years playing with our cousins and Julie and Jake.

One evening while the other kids were playing, Vivian decided she wanted me to take her picture so what did she do.  Lay on the floor and grin.  Too funny!IMG_0896

Here’s my handsome man relaxing in the rocking chair.IMG_0898

Christian decided he wanted a picture too…this is Lillian’s doll that Vivian had run off with.  Her eyes look scary here but they were cute at any other angle.IMG_0900

For family night, each family decorated their own gingerbread house.  Here is Julie, Jake and Lily’s house.  I love the chimney of peppermints. IMG_0901

Isn’t their lattice roof cute too?IMG_0902

I also love the star in and North pole on the back (poor roof point).IMG_0903IMG_0904

I was lazy and just slapped some icing on top as snow and Christian and Jared decorated it as they would.

Our House:IMG_0905

I was very proud of my marshmallow roof I must say. :)IMG_0906IMG_0907IMG_0908

One of the days Christian, Lillian and Vivian spent a lot of time coloring pictures.  Vivian was very happy to smile for me but I had a tricky time even getting Lily to look up she was so intent.


I love that Vivian loves to color so much when it really seemed to take a super long time for Christian to even be interested in coloring.  He does love to draw now though….IMG_0921

This is next picture is of Vivian in her panda shirt that she got for her birthday (next post).  She liked it so much she wouldn’t look up until she had her sweat shirt zipped up.


After almost a week of lots of playing, (some fighting on the older kid’s part), coloring, movie watching, crafts, shopping (on Julie and my part) and just good old hanging out, Jake and Julie decided they better get home and back to real life again.  So, on New Years Eve morning we were sad to see our company leave.   Christian got up in the wee hours with me to say goodbye to Lily, Julie, Jake and Kate.

IMG_0976Lily looks wide awake but Christian looks hung over.


This one was a little better  but Christian’s crazy curly hair makes me laugh a bit….it’s a little 1980’s if you know what I mean.

We were glad to hear that they arrived home safe later that night around 9 pm.  Thanks you guys for coming!  We sure had a lot of fun having you!

Christmas 2011

So between the time of my last post and this post, a few things that were in my perfectly laid-out plans went the way of the snow here in Arizona….non-existent, and not going to happen because we all got the flu.

Christian was luckily able to attend school up to the last day where he ran in the Reindeer Run and I helped out at his class party where he  and each child made their own gingerbread houses.  Here is a picture of him in his antlers holding his gingerbread house (complete with a drawbridge).IMG_0913 

My sister Julie and her kids drove into town to visit us the day before Christmas Eve, but because I wasn’t sure if we still had germs we arranged for them to wait an extra day before showing up to our house.

Christmas Eve

My sister Julie and her husband Jake and their two little girls Lily and Kate came to have Christmas with us.  We had a wonderful time with them here.  The first line of business is Julie and I took Christian and Lillian to see Santa.  It was pretty much the world’s longest line.  Then we went home and started making dinner and because of my own oversight, we ended up having a Thanksgiving-like meal minus anything but sides. :)

That night was very fun as we sat around the tree listening to Jared reading the Christmas story.  Vivian and Kate are very alike in mannerisms and it was so fun to actually watch them play together while he read.


Here’s Vivian with her favorite little panda bear doll.


This is one of my favorite photos of Kate and Vivian rocking in the rocking chair together.


Jared was intent on reading the kids the Real Christmas Story and Lily and Christian were trying very hard to listen so that Santa could see them being good.  IMG_0812

Here are the Two December Birthday girls.  So cute!IMG_0822

Christmas Morning


It looks like Santa decided to stop by….IMG_0831IMG_0832

Right: Christian and Vivian’s loot and Jared, Ginger and mine.

When we lined up the kids to come into the room, Vivian refused to come in until I turned off the train (she apparently is terrified of it).  After that, the kids were pretty excited to run in and check out the magic.


I just love the look on Christian’s face as he blurts out “This is what what I always wanted!”IMG_0851

Vivian was very intent at unwrapping her gifts.


Kate looking darling in her new barrettes Santa left her.


The girls looking at their new toys together.IMG_0856

Later that day…

We decided to take some Family Photos for Christmas.  The kids seemed to have another idea.  Lillian would not stop hanging on Christian and he was getting rather embarrassed.  She kept laughing and saying “It’s like I’m he’s husband.”  Christian was not amused. Here’s an illustration of Lillian hanging on Christian  


We tried adding the other little girls up it seems that the more kids you put in a photo the problems get exponential of getting kids to pose together.


Everyone has decided to lean on Christian in this photo.

In these ones we tried to get the older kids to hold the littler ones but that didn’t go over too well…IMG_0871IMG_0874

Sweet Vivian is the only one I could get to pose alone…and she didn’t even know I was taking these. IMG_0867IMG_0870

Here are the cute photos Julie took of Jared and I.IMG_0879IMG_0881

These are the ones of Julie and Jake and their family that Jared took with our Camera.


It was so fun to have them here for our Merry little Christmas.