Thursday, December 20, 2012

St. Nicholas Day 2012

I'm very behind in posting this... still want to eventually post about our apple orchard trip in October and our Thanksgiving, so hopefully that will happen soon.  Blogging has been less of a priority lately, although I do enjoy it and want to remember the things we have done in this "virtual scrapbook."

We made our favorite St. Nicholas cookies, which are a German spice cookie recipe from Maria Von Trapp.  These are so, so yummy!  I made the dough one evening and then the day before St. Nicholas day, we rolled it out and the girls used our bishop cookie cutter from the St. Nicholas Center.  

Cecilia takes her turn...

And now Caroline's turn...

rolling the dough 

They love to use this kid-sized rolling pin from their play kitchen.

After we bake the cookies, I decorate them with royal icing... I can't wait til the girls are old enough to do this part themselves!

We try to do a special breakfast on St. Nicholas day... this year, we had a yummy fig/anise/black tea bread (that had been made and frozen a couple months ago!), scrambled eggs with cheese and spinach, and a rich "German hot chocolate" made with coconut milk - yum!

Here are some of the St. Nicks on parade across the countertop.  As usual, we bagged them up and then secretly delivered them to our neighbors (yes, including the one who reported our chickens!).  We also took some to the church for our priest, our deacon, and our religious ed director and his family.  I made a little label for them, but apparently forgot to take photos of the cookies bagged up/labeled.  The tag said:

Happy St. Nicholas Day!
Nicholas was bishop of Myra in the 4th century.  Just as he did things for people in secret, these cookies are left in secret for you!

Here's a link to the document I made of the tags.  The formatting is screwy though; I'm not sure why... maybe I can come back and fix that!

Cecilia enjoys her hot cocoa... they stirred them with candy canes, which are shaped similarly to a bishop's crozier.  St. Nicholas was the bishop of Myra in what is now Turkey.

Caroline actually said her hot cocoa was too rich!

The girls made these St. Nicolas crafts a couple years ago... we pulled them out to decorate.  They are still out on our china cabinet, and tonight I overheard Cecilia making Mary and Joseph from our nativity, who are also currently on the china cabinet on their way to Bethlehem, say, "St. Nicholas - what are you doing here; you weren't even born yet!"  Ha!!!  So true!  She surprises us with her insight sometimes!

The girls left out their shoes and found treats in them, just like Nicholas threw money into the home of a poor family which landed in their shoes/stockings (depending on who you ask! ;).

Apparently all my toddlers will be enraptured with the oranges left in their shoes... Lucy's was a clementine this year, a little citrus fruit for a little girl!  She carried it around the house for awhile.  I later found it in the doll stroller...

In our house, St. Nicholas brings some new Christmas-related books... this year, he left The Story of Holly and Ivy (my older girls love this story), and two we'd never read before, My Christmas Book and The Saint Who Became Santa Claus.  We also found a CD this year by the Anonymous 4 called Legends of St. Nicholas... pretty chanting, and we've been listening in the car throughout Advent!

And of course, the girls found chocolate coins in their shoes!!  I added the St. Nicholas images again from Shower of Roses.  My kids really enjoy this touch; they like to compare the images on their coins.  I think I'm going to use some of the Christmas images for the leftover coins for their Christmas stockings... which reminds me that I really, really need to make time to finish Lucy's stocking soon!!  Must do that before any more blogging... hopefully I will get around to posting about St. Lucy's feast day as well...

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Lucy Speaks

Lucy has begun saying several things since she has turned one... she is about 14 and a half months now, nearly 15 months really, so before she gets any older, here are some of the things she is currently saying, lest I forget to record them before she moves on to bigger and better words!

moon: booo
moo (what a cow says): booo
no: no (no no no... she often will repeat this one while shaking her head!)
more: muh (while making the sign with her hands)
Mama: mama
Daddy: Dada
Uh oh: ah oh
All gone/all done/I don't know: ah oh (said while holding her hands out and apart as in a questioning manner)
shoe: sue (started as just "sss" and now sounds almost like the actual word)
Cecilia: sss
blueberry: blblblb (said with much movement of the tongue!)
Pope: pup
poke: pup
poop: pup (seeing a trend here?)
cup: pup, although it almost sounds like "bup," which was Cecilia's early version of the word cup
ball: baw
please: she makes a little p/b sound while doing the sign
dog: uff uff (making a barking sound)
cat: dah
hot: aah
hat: ah
mouse: mow (rhymes with now)... this is also about how she sounds when imitating a cat, although then it is a bit higher pitched

She also runs around making all these little sounds that have s and th sounds in them... she is rarely quiet!

Some of the things she has been doing...
* Running away from me when I am trying to change her diaper/put on her shoes/etc... not always, just on occasion
* Climbing onto the fireplace and pulling the rocks out
* Pointing to her head and saying "poke" ("pup") when we read her family book to her and get to the Uncle Tim page... she also sometimes does this when she hears us say "uncle."
* Dancing and marching to music; asking for more when we turn it off or stop singing
* "Helping" me put on my shoes by handing me shoe after shoe (more like thrusting them into my lap enthusiastically!)
* Pushing the corn popper toy all over the house... she likes this toy far more than the other kids did
* Going into the big girls' room and being delighted to get her hands on their stuff!
* Saying "Ah oh!" as she looks at the book Jamberry
* Pulling all the books off the shelves
* Climbing on the small table by the window to look out the window (time to move the table!)
* Clearly indicating no by saying it and shaking her head if I misunderstand something; for instance, if I offer her a piece of bread when she is saying/signing "more" and she really wants some ice
* Pulling things out of my purse, especially my wallet, and pulling out every credit card, receipt, and dollar bill
* Hugging with both arms... she has been blowing kisses for many months now
* Following all kinds of simple directions: "Go play in the sunroom in the little kitchen," "Put your clothes in your hamper," "Go get your shopping cart/stroller," "Go get your shoes," "Let's go to the kitchen," etc.  She also shows she understands many words and phrases such as snacktime, mailbox, outside, night-night...
* She is very interested in phones, laptops, ipads... especially when they make noise!
* She loves to go outside
* She begs for snacks by going to the pantry cabinets and pointing and making her little noises
* She likes to look through books and have them read to her, but loses interest quickly... currently she loves Jamberry and Who is Coming to Our House?
* She has temper tantrums!  My older two didn't throw fits until they were well past 24 months, ha!