Saturday, December 12, 2015

Iceland & Sweden

Matt's father, Chris, passed away from lung cancer in November. Matt had luckily been able to go visit his father, who lived in Sweden,  shortly after his diagnosis. Chris lived in Sweden for nearly 20 years, and once his funeral date was decided upon we decided that Matt and I would go and the children would stay with my mom. 

While making arrangements to go to Sweden, we looked at airline prices and found that you can fly Icelandair for a very reasonable price and have a stopover in Iceland for a few days with no penalty. So, Matt and I had a weekend in Iceland.

When we landed in Iceland in the early morning, the winds were blowing and howling. It was quite a Icelandic welcome. My first thought was, "Why the h&** did we come to Iceland in December?! We thought this would be a good idea?". 

The sun didn't come up until late morning and you don't see any form of life on the street until it does. We also discovered that the Icelandic people are night owls---the streets are filled with people drinking at the bars until 2-3 a.m.

It was a quick stopover, but one we can check off the bucket list. Iceland...been there, done that. If we return, it will definitely be in the summer.

The view from our hotel onto the main shopping street in Reykjavik.

A selfie on the high street.
The Hallgrimskirkja church with a statue of Leif Ericsson in front.

A view of Reykjavik from the Hallgrimskirkja.

A view of the sea and mountains from the Hallgrimskirkja.

Waiting for our flight from Reykjavik to Stockholm. We sent this photo to Chloe, the mannequin was wearing most of her Christmas wish list. 
 We left Reykjavik for Stockholm and stayed at Matt's father's home with his wife, Marie. It was nice to see family and meet some of Matt's aunts and uncles I had never met before, even if the occasion was a sad and somber one.

Marie sharing some Swedish Christmas traditions with us.

Iris looking out the window.

Matt and his brother Rob.

Matt with the ABBA display at Arlanda airport.
 We flew back home via a hour-long stop in Reykjavik. We had to walk out to our plane to board. I took a photo, only because what international flight in 2015 do you ever have to walk out to get on board in the plane? Everyone kept checking with each other to see if we were all going to NYC, afraid we were getting on board some puddle-jumper flight to Greenland or the far north!

Sunday, December 06, 2015

Getting in the Christmas Spirit

We got in the Christmas spirit by visiiting a Hudson Valley Chritmas tradition. The kids get to talk to  an egg, creatively named "Eggbert" and there is a walk-thru winter wonderland. 

Inside one of the winter scenes. 

Eggbert's Garage. 

BeBe, PaPaw and the kids.

Talking to Santa. Emma Claire wanted nothing to do with him until he handed her a candy cane. Then she told him she wanted a red Porsche. Santa replied, "What?" and she repeated herself a little louder to which Santa replied, "Me too!".

Friday, November 27, 2015


We had a great Thanksgiving with friends and family. It was truly a good time and it wasn't hard to top last year's flu-infested Thanksgiving. Luckily, no one came to the dinner table looking like a zombie while spreading a virus.

Besides having my family in for Thanksgiving, we were also joined by the DeFonce family and The Coopers came down from Canada to experience a U.S. Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 09, 2015

Northeast Rotax Awards

We went to the Northeast Rotax Awards ceremony. Chloe received his trophy for 3rd place in the NE MiniMax and NY State Champion. Oliver also received an award for kid kart. 
Oliver gets an award

NY state champions

EC enjoying watermelon

MiniMax awards

Monday, November 02, 2015

Run, Ollie, Run!

Our high school track and field team hold a fundraiser every year where they invite the children in the community to race. Oliver participated this year in the 1st grade 1/4 mile run. If you can't tell from the photos, we just kind of showed up and registered and I sent Oliver on his way. It was early morning on Halloween. Oliver insisted on running in his favorite shirt, the plaid button-down. 

In retrospect, I should have shown Oliver how far 1/4 of a mile is--to me it was nothing, to a six year old, it's pretty far, especially when they set off from the start like they are Usain Bolt, passing the boy's high school track and fielders who were supposed to lead and set the pace. Oliver blew by them like they were standing still. Once he cleared the paved track for the turn on to the dirt straight to the finish he was fading fast. He got passed just short of the finish line for 2nd place. 

He was very proud of himself, but admitted he had no idea how far he was supposed to run! Next year, he says he's going to be the 2nd grade champion. 

Getting the first graders ready at the start. 

Oliver led most of the race until the final stretch when he lost power.

Oliver with his medal.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Happy Halloween!

I think Star Wars costumes are the big hit of Halloween costumes.
Oliver (Darth Vader) and Chloe (storm trooper)

The kids went to a Halloween party at Tae Kwon Do and I could barely find them amongst the other Darth Vaders and storm troopers.
Oliver and his pals all dressed as Darth Vader. 
We went trick or treating again with neighbors. I don't believe Oliver walked at all, but ran the entire time from house to house spreading us out and wearing us out. 

The neighborhood crew. Chloe went as herself--race driver. Emma Claire dressed as a kangaroo, one of Chloe's old costumes. You can see Chloe in it here.

Chloe once again went out with her friends in the neighborhood trick or treating--she's too cool to trick or treat with her little brother and sister. 

Emma Claire "got" Halloween this year. While she didn't go to every house, mostly because we couldn't and keep up Oliver, she had fun, especially when she discovered that you got chocolate!
Emma Claire going to pre-school as a community helper-- a veterinarian. 
Emma Claire at the Halloween party at gymnastics. Her pre-school does not dress us for Halloween but does a community helper day (hence the Veterinarian outfit above).
The original Halloween costume, a pink puppy. Very cute, but according to EC, very itchy. 

Friday, October 30, 2015

Learning our ABCs

or better yet, sticking our magnet figures in playdoh.

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