Sunday, November 29, 2009

Dinner and a Carriage Ride in Downtown Denver

For years, I have wanted to go for a carriage ride downtown to look at the lights.
This year, we finally made it!
Saturday night we headed downtown Denver for some dinner and a carriage ride.

Oliver and Keith in Writer's Square

Oliver and Mom in Larimer's Square

Oliver, Mom and Dad in Larimer's Square

Running to Dinner!!!
Oliver LOVED running down the street, which also helped to keep him warm, build up his appetite and ensure a good night sleep.

Mmmmmm... PF Changs.
They brought Oliver training wheel chopsticks for him to try out.

If all else fails, eat with your hands and use the chopsticks as an accessory for looking cute.

All bundled up and in the carriage.
Self Portrait.

Oliver LOVED the carriage ride and the three of us were smiling ear to ear (even though the picture above doesn't seem that way). Jake was our horse and we also had Molly the dog on board. Oliver liked talking to Jake and Molly and telling them what good hosts they were. He was wide eyed at the lights passing by and we even saw Santa on the sidewalk. Oliver gave out a "Hi Santa" and a little wave.

Family photo at the end of the ride.

The "Ham Fam" with Jake, the horse.
Is it coincidental that Jake is sticking out his tongue?

Jake the Clydesdale Horse.
Jake was a little fired up when we first jumped on board. Come to find out he was just coming off a three week vacation. It only took him a few blocks to get back into the routine. We were sure to give Jake a good scratch at the end of the ride to say Thank You.

On our way back to the car we found this statue of a golfer.
Ahhh... wouldn't it be nice to be golfing.

On our way out of downtown we drove by the State Capital Building. They do a great job of lighting it up every year. These photos are from the car on our drive by so they are a little blurry, but still pretty.

What a great way to kick off the holiday season with dinner and a carriage ride downtown Denver. Keith mentioned that we may make this an annual tradition. I think it would be a great tradition to hang on to.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Trimming the Tree

This morning we decided to put up the Christmas tree. Oliver loved the whole process of putting up the tree and he was a great helper. Every time he sees the tree he will say "Tree, Pretty". He likes to look at the ornaments and pick out his favorites. It truly is a joy to watch him discover Christmas for what seems like the first time.

Just hear those sleigh bells jingling,
ring ting tingling too
Come on, it's lovely weather
for a sleigh ride together with you...

Oliver pointing out all of the ornaments

This picture amazes me and shows how big our baby is getting.

This was a common face today, sheer amazement and excitement!

To the Zoo

Friday morning, as many people were hitting the black Friday sales, we were headed to the Denver zoo to meet up with the Sanderson family. The warm weather continued and according to the car, we were in the low 70's before the day was done. The news claimed it only got to 68 but even that was pleasant for November.
Oliver is at such a fun age for the zoo. Every time we go it is more and more exciting. He was fired up to see the elephants and hippos this time. He made a few comments about the monkeys but they weren't the stars of his show like the animals of the pachyderm exhibit.

In mid sentence, Keith and Oliver are telling me about the elephants.

Another thing that Oliver gets excited about now that he's getting older is a ride on the zoo train. Typically, either Keith or I ride with Oliver. This time it was a full family event. According to these pictures one could argue that Mom and Dad were a little more excited than the two-year-old.
All through the ride Oliver would say hello and good-bye to animals and things that passed by. He also handed out big waves to people standing on the side.

As we walked past the hippo, he was just getting in the water. We had to stand by to watch for a few minutes to see him poke his head out now and then. Oliver loved the hippo!

Giving Thanks

In the shadows of Thanksgiving, we continue to give thanks for what we have and know that we are blessed to be surrounded by family and friends, near and far.  In moments like this we take time to appreciate the moments we have together...  and hand out extra hugs and kisses.  Ok... maybe just to Oliver 'cause he's so huggable and kissable!

Thanksgiving morning, we had plenty to be thankful for.
Even Madalyn found something that she was MOST grateful for.  Temperatures in the 60's, sunshine and an afternoon outside to catch some rays.

Oliver was also thankful for the nice weather and some outside time.  This kid LOVES being outside.  We have all missed the nice weather that didn't require a jacket.  Luckily, Thanksgiving was a jacket free day.

Making tracks through the snow. 

Looking back to check out his fresh tracks.

Hey Mom... What's that?
(Finger point resulting in smudge on the lens)
Can you see the little devil in him emerging with his tongue sticking out?  If you could see his eyes you would also see the mischievous side.

This was our attempt at our Christmas card photo.  I'm so bummed... I shut my eyes! UGH!!!!  Could have been SO perfect!

I love this picture.  I see so much personality in it. 

Keith was so excited about this shot.  He called it the Eddie Bauer shot and wished he was wearing a bathrobe, fuzzy slipper and was holding a cup of coffee.  What a nut!

We enjoyed a fabulous Thanksgiving dinner at the Wells house in Conifer.  Marion mad a wonderful turkey and we highly enjoyed our time with some of their friends.  Thanks for a great dinner and wonderful company, Jeff, Marion and Jin.

Jin and Oliver at the kiddie table. 
Do Kiddie tables get any cuter?

 I like to call this - Dueling Sippy Cups.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!
We have a lot to be thankful for.  Be sure to take the time to hand out a few extra hugs and kisses if the mood strikes you.  If you're shy, just ask Oliver.  He hands them out regularly!

Monday, November 23, 2009

It's Beginning to Look a Little Like Christmas

Ho Ho Ho!!!
It's that time of year again, for Oliver to make his annual trip to see Santa.  If you are wondering why we were at Santa for opening weekend of his arrival you have never seen the lines that form the closer we get to Christmas.  Last year the lines were 3+ hours long.  NO WAY!
Oliver was great with Santa, but he wouldn't sit on his lap.  Sitting on Mom's lap right next to Santa was plenty close.  He talked to Santa and then finished it off by handing out a hug and kiss to the jolly 'ol fellow.  Funny how he can give Santa a hug and kiss, but not sit on his lap.  Funny kid!  I wished the photographer would have taken a picture of the hug, but she was busy chatting with another elf.  Maybe next time.

Don't think that we jumped right into a trip to see Santa.  This was a full morning process.  First stop was to get Keith's hair cut.  The second stop was for coffee at Starbucks while we waiting for Oliver's hair salon to open.  Ahhhh... Fireside snack at Starbucks!

Finally, the drinks have arrived.  Something warm and toasty for Mom and Dad.  Something smooth and fruity for Oliver.

The next stop was to get Oliver's hair cut.  Here he is checking the workings of the Taxi before taking off on his hair cutting adventure.

Check out all of that long hair on top.

Meanwhile, in the back of the salon, I found Keith playing video games.
Boys will be Boys!

It was a great day to kick off Christmas, even if we haven't had Thanksgiving yet.  I am also noting that I really shouldn't forget my camera because phone cameras aren't nearly as clear.  Bummer!
Flash Back.  Oliver may not want to sit on Santa's lap, but we've come a long way since 2008. Also notice that it is the same Santa!

Crashing a Slumber Party for Edward

Surely, millions of fans can't be wrong. If you haven't read the Twilight series, you are missing out. I read all four books in a matter of a few weeks this summer. I have been anxiously awaiting November 20, the day New Moon opened in theaters. As the day approached I decided that going on the first day may be a little crazy, but I wasn't too crazy to go see it on the second day. Keith and I bought our tickets in advance, arrived early to wait in line and managed to get great seats for the show.

Here I am, about 10th in line for the show. I was SO fired up!

Oliver was fired up when we left the house as he wasn't so thrilled with Mom and Dad leaving him behind. In a hurry to leave before he got too wound up, I rushed out of the house and forgot the camera so the photos are all from my phone.

Below, Keith pretending he really isn't in line for Twilight with a bunch of teenage girls.

The funniest part of the evening was when I returned from the restroom and walked into the theater, there was Keith with his head in a bucket of popcorn while he was surrounded by nothing but teenage girls with a few sparse adults. Something about the scene cracked me up.

It was quite interesting watching the show surrounded by teenage girls. They giggled during the romantic parts, let out a sigh of disappointment when Jacob came on screen with his long hair and let out a squeal when Jacob cut his hair and took off his shirt. It made us laugh and feel like we were crashing a slumber party.  They can have Jacob though, I'm all about Edward!

I couldn't resist a photo for the blog.
Now Showing... Finally!!!

I'm already looking forward to Eclipse in theaters. Today I saw a report online that it releases June 30, 2010. I hope so!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Home Bodies

As you can imagine, after the whirl wind week/weekend we had last week, this past weekend we welcomed two full days of being home bodies with very few places to go.

A quick update on Oliver.  He seems to be doing very well.  He is still maintaining his content demeanor with a happy-go-lucky attitude.  He is responding very well to the medications to clear up his sinus infection and help with the Respiratory Airway Disease.  Twice a day he has breathing treatments and he is a real trooper.  We have a follow-up appointment next week and we are hopeful that we will get good reports.  We think that our cure for the cat allergy is working, but we really won't know until we start tapering off of the medical treatments.  We're hopeful, and we remind Madalyn regularly that she owes us, big time.  HA HA!!

Saturday we started with a  breathing treatment and Finding Nemo.

Sunday we started with a breathing treatment and a few good books.
See a trend?

Sunday, we rolled over to be awakened to a fresh blanket of snow.  This is the view out of our bedroom window.  We thought about going to church and then changed our mind.  I guess we are the true definition of "fair weather" attendees.

Oliver and Keith enjoying the view of the winter wonderland.

We did venture out of the house once or twice.  Saturday, Keith went pheasant hunting with his Uncle Jim.  Oliver and I tackled Wal-mart and Costco on the same day.  Caution: People have already started Christmas shopping (including us).  The stores were NUTS.  Oliver highly enjoyed Costco.  Something about free samples and a hot dog stand at the end.  Does it really get much better than that?

Sunday I buried myself in the home office and cleaned it top to bottom.  It is now the cleanest and most organized that it has been in the six years that we have lived here.  I'm hoping it lasts longer than usual.  So far, so good.  Spic and Span!
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