Sider Family Blog

Boy (Brad) meets girl (Pam). Boy and girl get married (1999). Boy and girl have a baby (Lily, 2002), and another (Ella, 2005), and another (Abigail, 2008), and another (Levi, 2009). Boy and girl get a dog (Charlie Brown, 2010). Boy and girl and kids and dog live in Toronto. Boy works at Evergreen (Yonge Street Mission). Girl stays at home with the kids and works part-time at Starbucks. And they all live happily ever after...

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas Countdown

Just ask Lily if you're not sure how many days until Christmas. She's had a countdown of how many more sleeps are left since our tree went up. We've actually already had our larger family get togethers. The Bates Christmas was a couple of weeks ago, and the Norman Christmas was this past Saturday. Lily and Ella got to wear their brand new Christmas dresses from Grandma Norman, as seen in the picture. Ella's is still a little bit long, so she only wore hers for the picture. Lily is so excited about this dress! She'll be wearing it at her school's Holiday performance this Thursday. I'm going to try to video the show and will hopfully be able to download it here for you to see later this week.

This past Saturday, Lily was given "The Grinch that Stole Christmas" book and a stuffed Grinch from her Great Aunt and Uncle. Lily has never seen the Grinch, so was kind of startled by the green creature with yellow eyes. After reading the book to her realized that the Grinch turns out to be a nice guy in the end. She loves the story now, and even helps me to finish the rhymes.

Ella was given "The Sneeches" book and a stuffed Sneech from the same Great Aunt and Uncle. In the book I found another short story from Dr. Seuss that I had never heard before "Too Many Daves". I have grown up with three Uncle Daves, my Mom's older brother, and each of my Dad's sisters married Dave's. When I was little this was sometimes confusing.
I remember Uncle Dave Bates was Uncle Dave, Uncle Dave Pipe was Uncle David and when the third Dave was added to the family he was going to be called Uncle Davy... but I don't think that anyone really liked that and all three were just Uncle Dave. I read Lily the "Too Many Daves" story and we decided that the two Uncles that were there should be renamed with a name from the story. I think that they are still fighting over who gets to be "Uncle Stinky" and who gets to be "Uncle Zanzibar".

Only seven more sleeps, and Lily has been busy checking out the presents that keep appearing under the tree each morning. She's allowed to shake the presents and guess what they are, but isn't very good at that yet. I'm sure in a few years Brad and I will have to get a little smarter with our wrapping to disguise the actual gift. One of the presents she says is square and hard, which she thinks is a wand... when really its a book. Shhhh! Don't tell!!

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Saturday, December 02, 2006

'Tis The Season

Today was the Bates Family Christmas. We celebrate early to make sure that everyone can come. This way there aren't any conflicts and trying to figure out how to fit everything in to an already hectic December is a little more bearable.

My mom and dad hosted the day, and everyone brought something to help out with the food and beverages.... great turkey Auntie Kathy!!! As you can see from the pictures, some of the dessert became an activity for Lily. With a little help from Auntie Amy, Lily was able to decorate a couple of gingerbread cookies, before she decided to behead them.

Our family has tried a couple of different things over the years for gift giving, pick a name out of a hat, gag gifts (remember the bread mixes!), etc. This year we thought that it would be best for every family to donate to a charity of their choice. We've chosen to give to WOW (Women for Orphans & Widows, This organization supports communities in Zambia and Malawi which have been affected by HIV/AIDS. We heard about this organization through a presentation at our Church.

For now the kids (four of them now!), are still exchanging presents. Lily REALLY liked her colouring/painting book, and right now is "sleeping" with her new Steffi Barbie. We can already tell that Ella will get a lot of use from playing with all of her musical gifts. She likes to listen and dances along with the songs.

Hope that the rest of the family had as much fun as we did today. Many blessings to you this Christmas!!

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