Thursday, January 2, 2014

That void between Thanksgiving and Christmas

So you know those three weeks between Thanksgiving break and Christmas break?  Those are the worst three weeks of the year.  There are school parties, band concerts, dance recitals, decorating the house, candy making, baking, cleaning the house, preparing for company, sending Christmas cards, finishing the shopping for and making of presents and then wrapping said presents, not to mention that cursed Elf on the Shelf that you have to move every night and come up with original creative ideas.  All of that on top of the normal things you do that keep you busy anyways, and you have pandemonium.  It is a void in space that sucks the life out of you so that by the time Christmas actually gets here, you just want it to be done.  Of course, we do it all regardless and in the end we actually enjoy it enough to do it again the next year.

Speaking of the Elf, here is Alexa making her debut this year and two very happy little girls.  (I think that those smiles is part of the reason we do it)
 In the midst of it all, we had a horrible ice storm.  I mean the entire world covered in 4 inches of solid ice, not snow, ice.  It was unreal.  We did not leave the house for four days, with the exception of the girls going out to play in the back yard.

 Kirsten also decided that she wanted to make a blanket for her sister for Christmas and sewed it all by herself.
 I also got all of my Christmas projects finished - a perk of being in the house for so long.  We actually really enjoyed our time together and had a ton of fun.  It was nice to get back into a normal routine again though.

Part of the routine was Katie going to preschool.  She performed the most adorable Nativity play with her school.  She was a cow in the stable.  She sang and danced her little heart out, especially to Joy to the World.
 Grandma Alleman came to watch her along with Jeremy and me.
 Kirsten and I went to Walls of Clay for a Christmas Party for the Petite Stars Dance Company.
 I painted a popcorn bowl
 Kirsten painted a DREAM plaque and a snowman ornament.
 Then there was Kirsten's school party.  I am room mom again this year, so it was quite a busy week and stressful day, but in the end it was fun for all involved.
We finished off the week with each of the girls having their Christmas recitals for dance. 
Kirsten's ballet class
 Her jazz dance
 Jazz class
 Christmas Katie
 Katie's ballet class
And with that, the three crazy weeks were over, school was over, and Christmas vacation was beginning.


This year for Thanksgiving both of my sisters came to spend the week with us.  Jenny came from California and Anne came from Chicago with her girls, Sarah, Kaley and Emily.  

Kirsten, Katie and Emily were inseparable the entire week.  Even when they got worn out, they were still together!
 I made some pies as did Patty.  They looked so delicious!  We worked hard between the two of us making a Thanksgiving feast for the whole family.
 Of course, we had helpers. 
 Sarah still had a lot of homework to do - the life of a senior in high school.  Kirsten decided it would be fun to help her and spent hours reading her social studies book.
 My sister Jenny is an amazing photographer and took wonderful pictures of all the little girls while they were here.

It was such a fun week and it was hard to seen everyone go.  We have so much to be thankful for.

West Coast Dance Explosion

The weekend before Thanksgiving, Kirsten attended her very first dance competition and convention, the West Coast Dance Explosion.  It was at the Frisco Convention Center and even though we had to be there really early in the morning, Kirsten was super excited and ready to go.
 Here are all the company girls from her studio the morning of the competition.
 Since it was a convention, they spent most of Saturday in workshops.  They had stretching, ballet, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, tap, contemporary, ballroom, and modern jazz.
 During the ballroom workshop, Kirsten was pulled up on stage to demonstrate the fox trot with the instructor.  She was thrilled!
By the time we made it to lunch, she was ready to relax and eat.
 About 3 in the afternoon, it was time to head to the dressing room and start doing her hair and makeup to get ready for their performance.
 Here is my cutie pie all ready to go!
Their song is "Doctor, Doctor, Give me the news, I gotta bad case of lovin' you"  So they have doctor costumes.  It was totally cute.  Here is their ending pose on the stage.
 Of course, she had a great cheering section there to support her.
  After everyone had performed, all the girls went on stage for the awards ceremony.  They took 2nd place overall in the "mini" division.
We are so proud of our Kirsten and can hardly wait for the next competition!