Annabel is officially on winter break. On Friday, her class had their holiday singing program and it was adorable. Annie was standing next to her friend, G, who is the biggest, cutest ham ever, and I couldn’t stop cracking up over his hilarious expressions and enthusiastic singing. The entire class was really into it – Annie has had several singing programs like this between preschool and pre-k, and this is the first time I’ve seen every kid not only singing, but doing all the hand motions and dance moves. Her teachers are great – you could see all of the kids really wanted to please them.

Holiday performance 2014

With Annabel out of school and Mike taking this entire week off, I am going to do something I rarely do – also take a week off. I haven’t taken a week off since James was born! This is one of the “downsides” to being a freelancer – no maternity leave or vacation days! I’m definitely not complaining, as freelancing lets me be with my kids, but it also means lots of advance planning and sleepless nights are required to take a stretch of days off from my regular assignments.

I’m looking forward to spending this week with my family, and I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday. Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Festivus, HAPPY HAPPY! I’ll see you all next Sunday!

Around The ‘Net

~Lucky Elizabeth Gallagher.

~Guy narrates random people’s lives in various public places. Really funny!

~Google will flip a coin for you! This is good since Annie always puts my coins in her piggy bank.

~Which Elf Character Are You? I’m Santa! I KNOW HIM!

~Hollywood Cowardice: George Clooney Explains Why Sony Stood Alone In North Korean CyberTerror Attack

~Cancelling Christmas (And Other Dumb Stuff)

~Here’s your yearly guide to Calvin And Hobbes Christmas decorations

~The Everything Book: Reading in the Age of Amazon

~How Likely Is It That Birth Control Could Let You Down?

They Read My Mind

~I go to Target a million times a week (it’s my main grocery store) and this is me every time I goespecially if I go without my kids and I can just wander the aisles at a leisurely pace. It’s dangerous to my wallet.

North Pole Train

~Last weekend we, along with some friends, took our kids on a North Pole Train to see Santa. All the kids wear pajamas, and the kids are given cookies and milk. After about 30 minutes of chugging, the train stops at the “North Pole,” where Santa gets on the train. He walks through each car, handing out candy canes and doing general Santa things. Annabel absolutely loved it.

Fillmore & Western North Pole Train
When Santa walked onto our train car.

The other kids were a little too young to really appreciate it…although, to be fair, we adults didn’t love it. I thought it was overpriced. Still, Annabel’s total enjoyment made it hard to not appreciate how easily a bit of holiday magic can make kids.

Fillmore & Western North Pole Train

Also, Santa pictures in an antique train car are pretty cool.

Last-Minute Shopping

~Yesterday I did my annual “OMG I HAVE TO GET A BUNCH OF LITTLE THINGS!” panicked Christmas Shopping run. I went early but the mall was still a zoo. Still, I finished my shopping and am feeling very relieved that everyone n my list is done. I picked up lots of silly stocking stuffer games, gadgets, and candy. If you’re still looking for little ideas, I suggest Tic Tacs, Pez Dispensers, tiny walky-talkies, hair chalk, socks, a deck of cards, nail polish (these pens are fun), and magazines. I got all of these things between my mall and grocery store/Target, so if you don’t have Amazon Prime, you can still buy all of these things in-person. Good luck, shopping warriors.

Happy Sunday, everyone!