Friday, December 31, 2010

Cook It in a Cup

This is one of the Christmas gift that the girls got from Uncle Troy and Aunt Deidra.  Cook It in a Cup came with a recipe book and six silicone baking cups. Aliah  broke it in right away with a recipe for Baked Polenta Cups.

Carefully measuring:
As you can see, she had fun baking and eating the outcome!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Highlights

We missed Uncle Troy and Aunt Deidra at our Haigh family Christmas, so here are some highlights:. 
 
 



Playing a game of Slamwich with Daddy:

Before we opened gifts, the girls sang some Christmas songs for us:

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Aliah's Baptism

Aliah asked a few months ago to be baptized.  When we met with Pastor Tom, he suggested we do it on Christmas Eve because it would be a very memorable service.  Six other people were baptized that night, but Aliah went first since she was the one who first requested it to be done.
She was very brave that evening.  Getting up in front of a lot of people is scary for a seven year-old.  (Pastor Tom reminded her to plug her nose!)
We are very proud of her and her decision to publicly demonstrate her decision to follow Jesus. 

Monday, December 27, 2010

All Clear!

The week before Christmas I got to play the role of cancer patient and spent most of the week running up to KU Med for my bi-yearly testing.  Today I got the last of my test results and there was NO EVIDENCE OF RE-OCCURRING CANCER!  Even better, my next appointment will not be for another year.  Counting my blessings!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Some Cookie with that Icing Please!

Pre-Christmas celebrations always include a cookie decorating party.  I had the pleasure of welcoming back home my bestie Heather and her girls.


Each of the kids had their own bowl of icing.  Although Violet's frosting disappeared quickly, curiously very little of ended up on her cookies:

After the frosting eating, I mean cookie decorating was over, we lost Violet.  A few minutes later she was found under the table.  That's always a sign that she is up to some mischief.

Sure enough.  She had filled a cup full of M & M's and was hiding while she downed the goods.  Stinker.  Doesn't she know Santa has a list of the naughty and nice?

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

We started our celebration of Jesus in a very special way tonight.  Here is a sneak peak:
Merry Christmas from our family to yours. 

For You Heather

Less than 24 hours after you blessed Aliah with this beautiful soft yarn, she had her creations done.  Thanks Heather!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Santa's Interview

In anticipation of seeing The Jolly Ol' Man, the girls came up with a list of questions to ask him.  They know that there are imposters and they wanted to be sure they were getting to see the real deal. 

1.  The most important thing is does he have a real beard?  A fake beard is a dead give-away.
2.  How do reindeer fly?  If it is magic, what makes it magic?
3.  How do you manage to eat cookies from every house you stop at on Christmas Eve without getting a tummy ache?

But when their turn came to talk to Santa, they were so mesmerized by his authentic beard and mustache that they forgot to ask their prepared questions.  They just got down to business and told him what they wanted.  Aliah wants a microscope and Annabelle a make-up set.  Violet was too star struck to remember what she wanted so she repeated what she herd last and also said a make-up set.  To this, Santa spent a couple of minutes gently convincing her that that might be a good gift for her in a couple of years, but maybe not when you are three and have no impulse control.  Santa is smart that way.
We spent a few minutes exploring Santa's wonderland before heading to meet Daddy, Aunt Caylyn and Uncle Chad for dinner.  Violet thought it was fun be in charge of the controls on the play train.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

She's Made It!

I just gave Aliah her mid-year reading assessment.  Here are her stats from this summer and now:

          accuracy:        fluency in words/minute:
July:        89%                39 words/minute
Now:      94 %               90 words/minute

Her fluency has drastically improved!  Now, she just has to discover that she can read chapter books to herself.  It will reveal a whole new world and we are excited that she has the skills to do so.

This picture makes me laugh because upon closer examination it looks like she is making an obscene gesture to her language lesson.  Well, I guess it is her least favorite subject, probably because it requires so much writing.

Three cheers for winter break!  Bring on sleeping in, going to movies, rollerskating, swimming, and the children's museum.  When we start school again in a couple of weeks, we will only have 14 weeks to complete the year.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Oops!

The other day, we woke up to this in the crock pot.  It smelled good, like Creme Brulee, but not the yogurt consistency I was going for.
Annabelle, "Mom, I don't think your yogurt turned out so good."  Yes, Annabelle, I think you are right.  Next time I am trying to make yogurt, I will try to remember not to leave the crock pot on all night.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Old Cat, New Tricks

Roxy sleeps in the garage in her heated kennel (unless the temperature is very low).  Propping the door open to the garage is just a little to inviting for all of the other critters that live in the area.  So Ricky installed a kitty door for Roxy this weekend.

Now that it is ready to go, the only problem is Roxy doesn't have a clue as to how to use it.  Some people find that their cats won't use doors like this because the pressure of the flap swinging back on their tail scares them.  This is especially the case for elderly cats like ours.

Not a problem.  We put our resident animal-lover-behavior specialist on the task.

10 minutes later, Roxy was using the kitty door on her own. 
 


Thanks Annabelle!  Wouldn't be surprised if you grow up to be a veterinarian.  Or crazy cat-lady with at least a dozen cats.  ;)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

When Does the Cow Come?

The pressure is on.  It's time to wrap up those gift-giving selections:
A cow, a pig, a goat, some chickens, what should we choose?
Each of the five of us were allotted a certain amount of money to gift in the form of livestock through World Vision this year for Christmas.  The girls agonized long and hard.  Would it be better to give a pig, that can birth up to 20 sows a year, or a goat and a sheep?  Aliah was convinced that a dairy cow was the way to go, after all, they produce milk which can be made into cheese and butter.  But she didn't have enough money.  That was when she sweet-talked me and her youngest sister to go in on a cow with her.  We have been studying the catalog for the past month before we made our final selections this week. 

Every year we let the girls help shop for a Salvation Army Christmas Angel.  It is one thing to buy a toy for a child who might not have otherwise received a present for Christmas.  But we wanted our girls to think beyond toys.  We selected World Vision based on their consistently high score by Charity Navigator, revealing their ability to provide help without a lot of administrative costs.  Having the girls choose farm animals helped them to realize that gifts that keep on giving (animals that produce milk, or reproduce quickly) are the best gifts in the long run.

We pray that these animals may provide the needed nutrition and/or income for many people in need.  Now we just have to convince Violet that a cow isn't coming to our house for us to wrap up and give away. 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Program

Some of the Haigh girls love to sing their heart out up on stage during the Christmas program.
Others like to act shy, scared, stare straight ahead or hide behind a sister:
Or snuggle with Grandma.  This is Violet's signature arm-over-your-neck-snuggle-while-on-your-lap move:
 

Aliah performed in the Christmas play and did quite well with her lines:

Aliah and Annabelle made their debut performance with their duet also that evening.  Nicely done girls, nicely done!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Desperate for the White Stuff

A couple of days ago we had a *dusting* of snow.  Violet insisted I get out her snow pants and snow boots.  She got them on (albeit backwards and with no pants, shirt, coat, or gloves) and informed us she was ready to go out to play in the snow. 



Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Best Daddy Ever

This weekend I was incapacitated and quarantined to the bedroom with the flu.  Daddy was in charge, and boy was I impressed with what he single-handedly accomplished.  Not only did he keep the girls super-quiet while I rested, but he managed to complete a day of school with Aliah on Saturday morning (someone was uncooperative with learning earlier in the week so she earned a day of Saturday school).

Saturday afternoon, Daddy got the girls dressed up and ready for their string recital.  He made it to the recital with all of the required instruments, music, chair for Annabelle, camera, and video camera.  What a task!

 
 Sunday I had tickets for Aliah and I to see the Snow Princess.  Daddy was my stand-in.   He took Violet to a babysitter because I was not able to take care of her while he was gone.  Then he took Aliah out for lunch and to the musical.  After the show, he really upped the ante. 

Aliah at the Art Museum at the Lawrence Arts Center:
 

 After the show, Daddy surprised Aliah by taking her to the Yarn Barn.  The Yarn Barn is a store just for crochet or knitting fanatics like our very own daughter.  She was in heaven.  She came home with an instructional book written for young ladies like herself with projects she can work on. 
 
Tonight he spent about 45 minutes reading and talking through the different types of stitches with Aliah from her new book.  We are so lucky to have such a capable, insightful Daddy who really knows how to take care of his girls and make them feel  special!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Hide-and-Seek, Violet Style

Violet:  Daddy, will you play hide and seek with me?

Daddy:  Okay

Violet:  I will hide and you count.

Daddy:  Okay.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5. . . 20, Ready or not here I come!

Daddy:  Hmmm, where could Violet be?

Violet:  I'm right here!

Daddy:  You're not supposed to say where you are.  That was a good hiding spot though.  Next time just don't talk, okay?

Violet:  Okay, let's do it again.

Daddy:  1, 2, 3, 4, 5. . . 20, Ready or not here I come!

Daddy:  I found you, you aren't supposed to hide in the same spot, silly girl!

Big Girls:  We want to play too!

Daddy:  Okay, I will go in Aliah's room and you guys hide.  Remember don't talk while you are hiding.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5. . . .

Violet:  Okay, we are going to hide downstairs!

Big Girls:  VI-O-LET!  You aren't supposed to tell where we are hiding at!

In case you don't click on the comments, here is a comment Aunt Caylyn left:

I have two favorite memories of playing hide and seek with Violet. One was when I was hiding and the girls were trying to find me, Violet saw me, but didn't realize she had 'found' me, since the big girls were still saying 'Caylyn, where are you?!', and she was just going along and saying the same thing as them. haha. That was a while ago. Then just recently, I was hiding at the lakehouse, and she was finding me, and she was looking in places, and I would hear her say to herself, "oh, good idea.... hm, nope.... Oh, yea, good idea.... nope, no caylyn". haha.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Mom's Away, Kids will Geocache

A few weeks ago, I was a way for the weekend and Daddy was on Mommy-duty.  He is into that over-achieving lets-get-out-and-exercise-while-Mommy's-gone mantra.  So he took the kids Geocaching.  Twice in the same weekend.
This was the travel bug they were moving to its new location.  They found it on a geocache last spring.  Travel bugs are fun, because you can go online and see where it has been before you found it.
This Geocache was found around the Lone Star Lake area:
The next day they geocached at the John Brown Battle of Black Jack battleground.
Their loot: