Tuesday, December 22, 2009

bundled and smiling

Merrrrrrry Christmas!

Thanks to our friends and family it feels more like Hanukkah. The twins are opening gifts every day as opposed to one big Christmas morning event. We are excited because now they have even more of a variety of toys to play with here at Oma's house.

Each day we do our best to get Easton and Layla out of the house for some outdoor activities. Some days are easier than others depending on the weather. When it is 115 degrees outside in Arizona there aren't many ways to enjoy the great outdoors. However, here in California even though some days are chilly and rainy (mid 50's for day time highs) we can still bundle up and head out to the park. I'm sure this picture will end up on my laptop's wallpaper sooner rather than later.

Kendra found (or remembered from years gone by) a park near by where there are several huge wooden structures for kids to play on and around. They are so big Easton said, "house, daddy... house" as we walked towards the play area from the car.

Kendra was in charge of keeping up with Layla as she ran through the passage ways making friends with all the little girls. Even though they were a little older than Layla, she did a great job of keeping up with them and still maintaining manners.

The park experience was the highlight of the day for me. Mostly because it turned out 100 times better than the McDonald's PlayLand experience last week.

We had the privilege of hosting dinner with Kendra's grandparents. It was a full evening of great conversation and it's been a long time since we've been able to get together in such a small gathering. The twins loved and hugged on both of them before heading to bed at the appointed hour.

They brought cute stockings with a book in each one along with some shiny wrapping paper. Guess what intrigued Easton the most about the gift? Yep, the wrapping paper...

As a break from the norm, we spent the evening at a Bible study with Oma and Opa's group... without the twins.

Kendra convinced me to allow Oma's friend's daughter, Sammy, baby sit for us. As you can imagine I had a difficult time accepting the plan to leave my two precious babies with a 13 year old whom I've never met. Kendra's confidence gave me the courage to agree and I'm happy to say everything worked out wonderfully. Thanks, Sammy!

That makes her the only the second non-adult we have trusted to baby sit Easton and Layla since they were born.

On another previous evening we stopped by and spent time with the Jakins' whose grandkids entertained the twins and vice versa. T.J. brought out the whoopee cushion. I am here to tell you, there is still comedic value and laughs to be had from the age-old gag of the whoopee cushion. Layla and Easton took turns stomping on it until it lay lifeless and empty on the floor.

Then T.J. would fill it up again with air and repeat the cycle until it was time to leave.

Easton's verbal skills took a huge leap over the past couple of weeks and here you see Oma listening intently as he explains the physics concepts of String theory.

OK, maybe it wasn't String theory. More than likely he was saying something like, "Christmas lights outside, Oma!"

He also recently discovered his singing voice and occasionally he'll participate in the nursery rhymes and fun songs Kendra made up. Easton's shyness is waning and his confidence is starting to build. He's learning how to express himself better day by day. One thing he always has and continues to do very well is: Relax! He leans his head on his hands and snuggles up in the blanket next to Layla for a new episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

I still haven't heard why GG's authentic hat ended up on Layla's head, but here is Layla showing her super smile while wearing GG's hat from the 1950's. It is in excellent condition and looks extremely cute on Layla's head even though it is quite a bit too big.

The most exciting part of the upcoming weekend is my time away from work so I can join in the fun everyone is having with the twins each day while I've been working the day away.

See you soon!

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