22 December 2009

This Year's Tree

Despite our best intentions, somehow we made it all the way to mid-December without a Christmas tree this year. Since Anders is mobile now, we actually briefly considered whether we should even get a tree. But in the end we decided that it just wouldn't feel like the holidays without one. So two weeks before Christmas, I ventured out into our stands to find a suitable tree.

We decided to go with an even smaller tree this year compared to last year. Originally I had wanted to "go big" again this year, but in the end a smaller tree just made sense. A smaller tree wouldn't need guide wires and would hopefully be less dangerous to a toddler. And we would be in NJ for part of the holiday season anyway. Oh, and remember that commercial Christmas tree stand that we ordered last year? Well, one of the legs was missing when it arrived. Finding a replacement leg has been on our "to do" list since last year.

A thirty minute walk through some of our grand fir stands resulted in several reasonably sized and nicely shaped options. Time to bring out the rest of the family. Anders may not be a net positive in terms of productivity yet - (question for all you parents out there: at what age does that actually happen? Does it actually happen?) - but he is old enough to participate.

Once we had made the final selection, I cut it down and all three of us carried the tree to the house.

We decided that we would leave the tree under the eaves of the house for a bit before bringing it inside and setting it up, to let some of the snow and water on the branches dry out. Of course, the following day we received a foot of snow which covered the tree up again. It wasn't until the following weekend that the tree finally made its way into the house.

Believe it or not, we managed to bring the tree into the house, set it up in the stand, string it with lights, and hang all of the ornaments all during a single Anders nap! (Thankfully, he slept for over 2 hours.) The tree is only about 10' tall, but looks lovely.

- Mike, Corinne, and Anders Rocket
Date: December 22, 2009

13 December 2009

Bad Holiday Sweaters

Our friends Simon and Lindsey celebrated the season with a "Bad Sweater Party". Prizes were awarded for "tightest fitting", "best holiday spirit", "so ugly it's cool", and "overall most hideous". We later learned the Simon had designed the categories around his outfits. (He had several.) But being the host, he wasn't eligible to win.

Our problem was that when we have "bad" clothes like that, we generally donate them. I mean, why hold on to something like that? But of course, now we know why. We happened to be in Portland a few days before and so we stopped by the Good Will "Super Store" to see what we could find. Mike and I each found something but we were surprised at how little they had for holiday attire. Other folks at the party had shopped in The Dalles and apparently that store was a gold mine. I guess Portland has too many shoppers wiping out the supply.

A fun activity at the party was a Polaroid photo booth, complete with photographer, designed like a police mug shot. (Too bad the sign is covering up my hideous holiday sweatshirt: a polar bear decked out with 80s black sunglasses, holly, and rhinestones.)

We didn't win any prizes, and that was just fine by us.

- Corinne, Mike, and Anders Rocket
Date: December 13th, 2009

04 December 2009

Chasing Anders

Now that Anders is getting more confident walking, we've started to play chasing games with him. I figure that it's a good way to give him some added motivation to get stable on his feet - plus it's lots of fun for everyone.

Corinne usually ends up playing the role of "safe" or "base". His first reaction to being chased is often to just fall down, which is not terribly effective if your goal is to avoid getting caught. But then again, I don't think that is the goal.

Grandpa even got in on the action during a recent visit.

- Mike, Corinne and Anders Rocket

02 December 2009

Silly Anders

Anders has decided that it is funny to open his mouth as wide as he can such that his face is practically stretched to max. He pulls out this trick when he wants attention or when he is trying to make us laugh... like when I'm trying to convince him that it is nap time.

- Corinne, Mike, and Anders Rocket

01 December 2009

Anders's First Artwork

Anders has produced his first piece of art!


Anders just loves playing with crayons. When we drop him off at daycare, he immediately heads for the tin of crayons. He finds it the most fun to take them in-out-in-out and carry them around; coloring is almost secondary. It appears that his favorite colors are those in the orange, yellow, and white families.

- Corinne, Mike, and Anders Rocket
Date: December 1, 2009