Dec

29

Christmas Day

December 29, 2005 | Leave a Comment

We survived Christmas ! Actually, it was very pleasant; we all had a wonderful time. The four day weekend made it extremely relaxing and low-key. I spent Friday afternoon stocking up on some DVD’s and other incidentals for the holiday, and also a new DVD player since I needed one with optical out for the audio. (That night we tested out our new movie setup, and boy, it’s spectacular – digital projector with a 120-inch screen and surround sound – home theatre on a budget !)Saturday was relatively calm, especially as Eoghan and Orla were both fighting colds. Jenn spent the day getting things organised, leaving the presents out under the tree, and all that. On Saturday night Orla and Eoghan busied themselves making sure that there were sufficient cookies and milk left out for Santa, and carrots for the reindeer. (They’re smart kids; they know who to keep happy !). We also spent the day checking out a wonderful website at NORAD that had regular updates tracking Santa’s progress from Asia across Europe to the US. The kids were enthralled !

Orla and Eoghan both woke around midnight (Jenn blamed me for rustling their stockings); Orla was sure she had heard Santa downstairs, and Eoghan decided he had heard the reindeer on the roof.

On Christmas Day the kids awoke to their stockings and a pile of presents; they had to wait, however, until Justin and Carol came over before we let them loose. Once J&C arrived, at 10AM, the kids got busy. They were delighted, Orla especially with her sewing machine and Eoghan with his workbench and tools. Both of them also loved their “Marble Madness” game that Caitriona sent from Ireland.

The good thing about the kids growing older is that they were able to keep themselves busy -Eoghan started hammering and building, and Orla stunned me by producing numerous cushions and pillows that she made on her new machine. I think I should start selling them on the web !

Dinner was at J&C’s house, and was very pleasant. We spent a lazy afternoon playing Trivial Pursuit – although Orla got ticked off because there were no questions about sharks !

Christmas Night we had our movie night, while the kids crashed early.

For the last few nights Orla and Eoghan have been playing with their new iPods and their associated ihome radios. Orla is having fun playing her favourite music on the iPod (Ashlee Simpson, among others). She also loves some of the audiobooks Jenn downloaded for her, including the “Just So” stories. She wasn’t too keen, though, on the classical station I had tuned her radio to; she fiddled with the tuning dial until she discovered a country music station and then announced with glee Now that’s more like it, baby ! and clapped her hands in satisfaction. I guess she likes her music…

Dec

20

We’re in the countdown to Christmas. Hard to believe. The kids have been busy – Orla designed our Christmas card (with a little help from Jenn) and has been busy making all sorts of things at pottery. Eoghan is getting quite artistic, too, and can now sit in total concentration working on his art pieces, some of which are pretty darn good.Last weekend the kids were invited to a birthday party at the Childrens’ Museum in Poughkeepsie; they had lots of fun checking out the firefighters equiment, X-ray mock-ups and dinosaur fossil digs. And, of course, the pizza and cake weren’t bad either !

Meanwhile, Christmas came early for me – I received a wine delivery that weighed almost 1400lbs. Normally, you don’t think of wine in terms of weight. But when an icy driveway causes the driver of the delivery truck to dump it at the front gate, in frigid temperatures, well then you start to think in terms of weight…

On Sunday we brought the kids into the city on the train, which they always enjoy – although Eoghan is not quite as much of a train fan now; his tastes are extending more to ships and boats. In any event, he enjoyed the trip in, and meeting Grandma and Grandpa, and seeing the tree at Rockeller Center. Orla and Grandma had a blast on Monday on the ice at Rockefeller Center. Unfortunately Eoghan caught a stomach bug that prevented him joining in the fun, and he wasn’t really all that interested in seeing the ladies strutt their stuff on the ice, or Orla’s lesson.

On Monday evening I brought Orla to the New York City ballet to see The Nutcracker. We both had a great time; Orla was amazed by the Christmas tree and the reindeer sleigh, and enthralled by the the beautiful ballerinas and their pirouettes, plies and pas de basques. (I admired the, em, dancing, too).

Tuesday, transit strike notwithstanding, saw the kids off to visit Santa at Bergdorfs and hang out some more with their grandparents.

Orla and Eoghan are now getting to the age where they can have fun at Christmas and appreciate all that New York has offer at this time of the year. And who knows ? Maybe Santy will be good to them…

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