Last week was aunt's birthday- Happy Birthday Aunt Birgitt!
Last night I went shopping for Christmas and got home near midnight. I do believe I'm finished.
If you are considering buying a tricycle anytime soon, check out Walmart.com's Radio Flyer products. I wanted one with a parent handle that steers the front wheel to help my kids learn to ride. It also has a seat with a back on it. $60 marked down to $42 and now it is $25. With tax and shipping Brianna's getting it for $31. Yippee for great sales, go check them out!
I like the DK My First products for my 3 littles and found learning cards, like flash cards, that are textured. They have several sets available for about $10 each set of 16 different places online. At Sam's Club they have a 'pack' with these cards AND a book for $11 together. Love it! Find a friend with a card if you don't have one :) There were 3 different packs available at our store.
The "Tag Junior" is a really cute little gizmo that we bought for the 3 littles (but we're giving it to Emma). I didn't realize, though, that you HAVE TO have an Internet connection available to download each book that you buy. And the gizmo holds maybe 6 or 8 books at a time, any more than that store on your computer to be shuffled on or off.
I un-package most of my kids' toys before Christmas. I know it means it's harder to wrap, and it also means that they don't get to see the pictures on the box. But the joy they have in being able to open a gift and play with it without having to hand it back over to Mike and I to undo the 30 zip ties and 20 wire twisties before letting them play with it is well worth it. This year I'm especially glad I did because I didn't know about the Internet thing for the Tag Jr. and now I was able to set it up with the book E's getting with it for Christmas as well as the 2 I bought and set aside for later... so when I do give those to her they're already on her device.
I decided not to un-package Kristopher's toys this year. For a few reasons. 1. He has more patience than the younger kids. 2. He likes looking at the boxes and in fact would store EVERYTHING if we would let him. 3. He is the only child that will walk into the room and look at the 'big present' and wonder if it's his. And mostly, it will be. Not because the toy is bigger but because the box is 4x the size of the toy :). 4. I already undid twisties off of 4 kids' toys, I was tired of un-packaging by the time I got to his things!
Yes, we really do only give the kids 4 gifts for Christmas. 3 from us (since Jesus only got 3 gifts for his birth...) and 1 from Santa. We also have a few stocking stuffers including a (cheap LOL) DVD for each of them, a small musical instrument (all 5 are part of a 'band in a box' percussion kit), and a personal-hygiene item (toothbrushes, pacifier, diaper cream, hairties...). They each have 1 or 2 small toys in their stockings too. Santa doesn't wrap the gifts he puts in our stockings, but he does wrap the presents he puts under our tree. What's your tradition with wrapping and Santa?
Traditionally every Christmas I give the kids all new Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve and sometimes an outfit to wear to church. Mike always gets a new dress shirt. This year they all have pajamas and I only bought a Christmassy PJ for Lynae. And I gave Michael his new shirt before our staff dinner last week. So no Christmas eve gifts this year!
While I was setting up the Tag Jr. on the computer I realized it's the same website I needed to use to set up the Leapster 2 that Kristopher has to get it connected to the computer. I set it up and I'm impressed by the software! Kristopher is working on 2nd grade skills on a lot of his Leapster games (it told me this) and he's doing really well on most skills. Pretty neat!
I've been writing this post on and off for 20 minutes while doing other things and now I have to go get the kids at school!