Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas celebrations!!!

Our many Christmas celebrations are finally behind us, much to the children's chagrin. They were definitely a lot of fun, but I'd have to say also very tiring. :-)

We started off with our annual "photo shoot" to make our Christmas card for the kids. The older the kids get, they do get a bit easier -- but it's still an exercise in patience. Here is the shot we went with and the final card:

Our first excurison was down to visit Great-Grandma Imogene and have a small Christmas celebration with her on Christmas Eve. They got some really nice clothes from Great-Grandma for Christmas. (They've already worn them by now!)

And they started playing with some old toy bricks at her house while we were there. They are officially the third generation now to play with these! They were bought for my Mom and her siblings, my sister and I played with them when we were little, and now my kiddos are playing with them. How neat is that?

Then it was time to wake up Christmas morning and see what Santa brought! The kids were ecstatic as their ONE Santa gift they requested was a Nintendo DSi - and Santa, of course, came through!

Santa really is the best. He even included several DS games, and the DSi's have hardly left the kids' sides from Christmas Day. Mom and Dad got them some presents too, of course, but nothing worthy of competing with the DSi's. :-)

Then, later that same day, the Benich family was coming to our house to celebrate Christmas. So we had quite a full house with about 16 people eating Christmas dinner at our house. Whew! Thankfully, everyone helped contribute to the meal. We probably all ate too much, but it was quite yummy.

And it was time for the kiddos to get to open presents AGAIN. Yes, you can be that all of them were very psyched. :-)

Then on Saturday, our next Christmas celebration was with the Ossanna side of the family (Ken's Mom's side of the family). Where there was another gift exchange for the little ones...

And our last and final celebration was with my side of the family at my sister's house.

Where we had our fourth and final Christmas celebration and gift exchange. The kids were so sad to see it end, but they had so much fun!

And thanks Papa and Grandma for the automatic Nerf gun for Kyle (not!), and Auntie Danah for yet another Webkinz for Delaney. :-)

And here are a few of the hilarious gifts received that night:

I received a plaque that says, "I love to give homemade gifts... which one of the children would you like?"

My mom received yet another Scrabble game (to my dad's chagrin).

Kenny received a t-shirt that says, "Behind every great man is a woman who is rolling her eyes." (I wonder why everyone laughed so hard?)

My dad received this t-shirt, with my Mom declaring that he can't wear it when he's out with her. I'll let you read it yourself.

And concluding the gift exchange was PaPa opening the largest gift of the evening, that the kids had wanted him to open since the beginning. Apparently though, a really naughty elf was just teasing PaPa and had wrapped and wrapped his gift many times, in increasingly larger boxes. When he finally got to the gift, it was an itty-bitty fishing item!!!

Too funny! After a lot more food, playing games and staying up too late -- the celebrations were officially over. I hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas celebration (or celebrations) too, and we wish everyone a wonderful New Year!

Ken, Dani, Delaney & Kyle!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Benich Family Pictures!

We were able to organize a photo shoot with Kenny's side of the family (which is not easy, mind you, with everyone's crazy schedules). We mainly wanted an updated photo of everyone, since the last one was before Kyle was born and Kim was married (and of course, no Teresa or Michael). So basically, quite a while ago! We had our pictures taken at Portrait Innovations this past Sunday. With the holidays, it was quite hectic and they were a little behind -- but the photos turned out very well. Here is the entire clan:

Standing in the back starting at the left, we have Kenny's older sister Kim by her husband Ed. Then we have Kenny's younger sister Kristen by Danielle then Kenny at the end. Then starting at the left again in the front, we have Teresa (Kim & Ed's older daughter), then Kenny's dad Babe, then Kenny's mom Kathe who is holding Michael (Kim & Ed's younger son), then Delaney and Kyle at the end.

We also got a few "breakdown" shots of everyone. We got the grandparents with all the grandkids - aren't they cute?

Then Auntie Kristen with all her nieces and nephews - the kids were remarkably well-behaved during all these photo shoots!

The Burzynski family:

And, of course, our family:

Whew, glad that is over! Now, I wonder if I can talk MY side of the family into getting a photo shoot too?


Friday, December 11, 2009

The Bucket Brigade!

Kyle had his first Christmas program last night! The entire first grade body at Solon put on a Christmas show entitled The Bucket Brigade. The program was designed by the participating teachers at Solon, but they were based on children's books sharing a message of "helping" fill someone's bucket rather than "dipping" from someone's bucket. It was soooooo cute! I can't post as many of the pictures here as I would like because the school doesn't have permission to post every child's picture at the school online. So I can only post a few:

All the kids looked awesome in their "brigade" uniforms!

They even had "costume" changes, here is Kyle in his "new kid" outfit. They "filled" his bucket by being kind to the new kid and letting him play with them.

After singing several songs and showing many more ways to fill someone's bucket, even a way NOT to fill someone's bucket -- they switched back into their Brigade uniforms, and closed the program with more songs and blew us a kiss at the end. SO CUTE!!!

You did an awesome job, Kyle!!!

Luv, Your Family