Monday, 31 December 2012

Sun Dogs

There were sun dogs in the sky yesterday morning during the sunrise.
Do you see the rainbows on both sides of the sun?

The temperature had dropped to 'really cold' during the night and stayed there for most of the day yesterday.  But it didn't snow.  I thought that sun dogs were a sign that it is going to snow.

Brenda

Friday, 28 December 2012

Gingerbread Houses

We have a tradition here during the Christmas holidays....we make gingerbread houses.  The kids look forward to it every year.

So, yesterday, when it was snowing pretty hard outside, I was rolling out the gingerbread.  I covered the table in candy and let them get creative.

They worked and ate.

And ate and worked.  Sophie was making a skating rink here...she got that idea from Grady.
Grady made some snowmen out of gumdrops.
Jack made some hockey nets in his yard.
I had rolled out some gingerbread men too.  I turned some upside down and made them into reindeer.

Johanna made a tractor....so amazing! 

Sophie was wondering why Johanna's looked so good and I told her that Johanna had done this a few times before ;)
Sophie was the first to start eating all the candy off of her house.

I thought that we had eaten enough while we made the houses...

So everyone was a little silly on candy.....and by this time it was evening. 

So, I told them to go outside.

Even though it was black dark out.

There was a lot of screaming and shouting.  And they came in covered in snow.

But at least they got some of that sugar out of their system.

Brenda

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Snow

As we travelled around the last couple of days, visiting with family and friends, we enjoyed some spectacular views.


The snow that we received last week didn't fall off the branches of the trees.
 

It's like we are living in a magical winter wonderland.

I love it.


And the best part is that it's snowing again today......a whole lot more!


 
I think that there will soon be sleigh bells ringing....

Brenda

Monday, 24 December 2012

Douglas Santa Claus Parade

Yesterday, the little village of Douglas was filled with the Christmas spirit.  They always hold the Santa Claus Parade the Sunday before Christmas.  It's a great opportunity to visit with families that have returned home to celebrate the season with their families.

We decided to put a float in again this year.  We were told that the theme for the parade was "Winter Wonderland"....and that was very fitting with all the snow that had just fallen.

Our wagon was already covered with snow so instead of cleaning it off we decided to work with it.  The kids built a hill at the front and a snow fort around the back.  Then they built some snowmen.

We dressed up the float with some downhill skiis, cedar boughs, wreaths and a few Christmas trees.  I made two big signs "Merry Christmas from the Dwyer's" to go along each side of the wagon.
The boys decided to ride in the back of the truck.
Terry, the girls and I sat on the float.
These were our drivers!
The parade was a lot of fun.  We did lots of shouting and waving and threw lots of candy canes.  We were surprised when we were awarded 3rd prize!

Then I took the girls to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus.  Sophie needed to hand deliver her letter to them and they were delighted to receive it.
Brenda

Friday, 21 December 2012

Preparing for Christmas

It snowed again last night...and today....and it's still snowing.

Johanna's bus was cancelled again today.  That's the third time this week.

It was a good day to get some things done.  Terry got the kids to work on our float for the Santa Claus Parade....it's on Sunday.

I decided to bake.  I always do a lot of Christmas baking and then we give most of it to the neighbours.  I made three dozen buttertarts, a toffee/chocolate bark, a batch of ginger cookies and a big batch of sugar cookies.  I also made up the pie shell for a pecan pie....I might make it tomorrow.

So, this evening we decorated the sugar cookies.  I made up some royal icing and then let the kids cover them in candies and sprinkles.

We have snowmen, angels, candy canes, snowflakes, gingerbread men....

stars, Christmas trees...

We also took some time to wrap a couple of presents.  The last time Sophie was in the grocery store with me, she shrieked when she saw a bag of bows.  She told me that they were SO beautiful and that we had to buy them.  So we put them in the cart and then I told her to pick out a roll of wrapping paper too.  She was over the top excited about the bows....and then I thought about it.  I haven't really wrapped presents with her.  The last couple of years, I would just throw gifts in gift bags.

So, I got out the bows and wrapping and I told Sophie and Lydia that we had a few gifts to wrap.  They put on the tape and watched me fold up the ends.  Then I told them to pick out a bow and we put it on the gift.  I told them that it looked beautiful and we would do another one.  They both looked at me like I was crazy.  They said that I couldn't just put one bow on the gift....that wasn't right!  It needed more bows....many more bows.  So I told them to show me how they wanted the gift to look....and they covered the entire top with bows!
I love their creative ideas.  This gift is for my niece...she's 4 years old.  I think she'll love it!

Then we wrapped three more gifts...and they covered them with bows too.  I think the Grandmas will like their gifts too!

Brenda

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Bedding down the calves

Terry cleaned out the barn the other day and fresh straw needed to be put down.  We are keeping calves in this barn for the winter.  They were recently weaned from their mothers. 

So the boys threw down some straw for the bedding.  They needed to shake out all the straw and make a nice bed.  The calves will sleep on it...and poop on it.  It will be ruined in no time and need to be all cleaned out and bedded again.  But that's the way it goes.

So Grady shook out the straw.

And shook out the straw.
And shook out the straw.  Then I noticed that Jack wasn't helping and I asked why.  He was quick to tell me that they could only find one hay fork and he had just finished doing the other side of the barn....so it was Grady's turn!
Here is the finished bed.  We invited the calves back into the barn.
Jack poured out the grain for them.  I told him not to smile....this is serious work...but he couldn't stop smiling.

And they ate.
And this one asked me to stop flashing the camera.
I told her that she was famous and fabulous...and that she would be seen all over the world.  But she just went back to eating her grain.
 
Brenda
 
 

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

A Snow Day

Johanna's bus was cancelled again yesterday.  This time it wasn't freezing rain...it was snow!

Our world became a winter wonderland.
 
 

It was the kind of snow that was wet and easy to roll into a ball.  So they made a big snowman and then they built two walls and had a snowball fight.  It was good fun.

Everyone came in soaking wet.....and happy.

I went out with Grady to feed the cows.
Here they come.
I like how they always walk in a line.
Here's Grady cutting and removing the baler twine.
Gather 'round girls...it's time to eat!

Brenda

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

A Freezing Rain Day

Terry brought the tree thru the door at 7:00am yesterday morning.

Everything outside was covered in ice.  Johanna's bus was cancelled.

It was time to decorate the tree.

Sophie was the most excited.  I can't even explain how excited she was.  She had been waiting for this day...this moment.  And it was finally here.


We put tractors on our tree.

And  a sheep.

And another tractor.

And another sheep.

And another tractor.

And a homemade star.

And a wee bit of Irish.

Johanna made this a few years ago...it's baby Jesus in some straw...right from our barn!

And a bird house.

And some pinecones.

And I tied some burlap to some of the branches.

I love our tree.

But that was only the beginning of our day.  It was also Jack's birthday!  So we made him a cake.

He had many phone calls.  We were just about to sing to him when the phone rang again.

We had a really great day.

Johanna's bus was cancelled again today.  This time it was because of snow...it's much better than freezing rain.  We can go outside and play!

Brenda