Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving (part 2)

Thanksgiving evening, right before bed, Sonia was struck down by a tummy bug.  The next 8 hours were a little rough, but on Friday morning, she made a miraculous recovery.  Other than being a little more subdued than normal, The Great Sosini had a perfectly lovely day.  The whole crew (minus me) went to play at a playground at a nearby elementary school, and since I wasn't in attendance, I'll let Niki post the awesome pictures they took there. 

That afternoon, Niki and I baked and decorated a choo-choo train birthday cake for an early celebration of Peter's 2nd birthday.  Upon inspecting the cake, Sonia informed us that the cake actually looked like a truck.  Yeah, she was kind of right.  Whatever!  Petey likes all forms of transportation.

While we were making the cake, Sosini and Charbunkle were dying to get in on the baking and decorating action.  We gave them a small part of the cake that we didn't need and encouraged them to go nutty decorating it.  The girls mostly just went nutty eating the frosting and candy decorations.

Before cake eating, we opened presents.  The girls gave the birthday boy a little assistance in opening this present that Andrew, Sosini, and I gave him-- a Thomas Take-and-Play Tidmouth Sheds!  Petey has a December birthday, so a few of his presents were wrapped in Christmas wrapping paper.  Good thing none of them can read, because this wrapping paper said not to open the package until December 25th.

Grandpa Spike helped Peetza-Pie blow the candle out on his train/truck cake.

Snuggles for the almost-2-year-old from his uncle....  Petey really loved hanging out with Uncle Andrew!

Saturday morning, we took the kids to Jump Zone to help them (and us!) burn off the massive amounts of sugar consumed the night before.  As always, hilarity ensued.

We loved this Sesame Street jump just for little kids....  I wish we had it here at our jump places!


Sosi and Petey LOVED this cool teeter-totter!  Once they discovered it, all jumping ceased and they hogged this piece of equipment until we left.

Time for more baking!  How many toddlers does it take to make one package of brownies?

More playing in the hot tub....

Sonia found the swimmies that she had used back when we were in TX in July, and she picked up right where she left off, teaching herself how to swim.

That pretty much takes us to Sunday morning when Andrew, Sosini, and I flew back to Illinois....  We had such a great time!  Thank you for such a fun holiday, everyone.  Corey, we missed you a ton-- we were all so sad that you had to work and couldn't make it to Texas.  Hopefully next year's holiday season will be a less crazy time for you!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Thanksgiving (part 1)

We had a criminal amount of fun in Texas during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend-- but what else can you expect from getting Charlotte, Sonia, and Peter together?  Of course we endured the typical toy tussles, random toddler crabbiness, the attack of a tummy bug, and travel-related sleep issues, but nothing out of the ordinary.  Here are a few highlights from the first part of the visit:

I still get a kick out of watching Sonia happily pull her Thomas suitcase through the airport!

Watching a dvd on the airplane while clutching her beloved Brobee:

Finally in Texas-- cousin convention!  My parents' gently sloping driveway was perfect for riding bikes and, oddly enough, pushing lawnmowers.

Swinging on the porch swing that my grandfather made is always a big hit with the kids!

Bestest buddies!

My mom had a bunch of cool gourds displayed on the table, and they became some of the kids' favorite toys this holiday.

Sonia's first experience on a big wheel....  Her legs need to get just a teeny bit longer!

Andrew, I think Petey's tricycle is a wee bit too small for you!

Helping Grandma JoJo out with the gardening:

My mom had her Christmas tree up already, and we thought it was funny to see the kids in bathing suits (we were about to go for a swim in the hot tub) standing in front of it. 

Pizza-Pie and two of his favorite things: Grandpa "Bike" and a pillow pet (AKA a "bubba"):

A rousing game of ring-around-the-rosie while we were waiting for Andrew to finish up cooking Thanksgiving dinner:

Oh, Charbunkle!

The feast!  Andrew cooked about 80% and my mom cooked the other 20%.  Thank you so much for a really, really yummy Thanksgiving dinner, you two!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Going on a gnome hunt

I know, I know, I talk constantly about how much I love the Morton Arboretum.  But come on-- who else thinks of hiding 15 gnomes throughout the children's garden and encouraging kids to brave the cooler temperatures by hunting for those gnomes?  Even stego got in on the act after he ate half of the plants in the garden.

Of course, Sonia thought that gnome hunting was seriously awesome.  And we loved watching her get excited about each one that we found!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Re-imagined Fashion

My fabulous second cousin (first cousin once removed? she's my mom's first cousin's wife....), Susan, knitted this fabulously beautiful maroon sweater for The Great Sosini when she was just a wee little baby.  One of the times Sonia wore it was the day I took her to meet Santa Claus the first time

Fashion has taken a turn for the awesome with the popularity of cute cropped sweaters and sleeves that are shorter than the sleeves on the shirts worn underneath.  When I realized that the body of the sweater still fits Sonia (thanks to the style and stretchiness of the sweater), I put together this outfit:

Sosini looks pretty darn trendy, in my opinion!

I'm sure when Susan knitted this sweater, she had no idea Sonia would still be wearing it two whole years later!  Thank you again for this wonderful gift, Susan....  Handmade gifts are so special, and when they are as exquisite as this sweater, they are simply priceless.

Arboretum Adventures with Stego

The Great Sosini has recently developed a sincere love for dinosaurs, and she especially likes carrying them around the neighborhood with Daddy, letting them "eat" various plants.  When we went to the arboretum yesterday morning to take advantage of possibly the last day in 2011 with semi-decent weather, Sonia brought her new stegosaurus along for an adventure.  He must have loved the veritable buffet of different plants that the arboretum provided for his snacking pleasure!