Brown and blue

Monday, December 24, 2012

Our Christmas activities for the week

 We almost got out of the Christmas spirit last weekend with that major parking ticket but I decided to carry on with our activities for this week.

We made a Santa Claus

Jackson was a reindeer

A Christmas tree ornament

We made a paper wreath that prompty became a bracelet

We made a reindeer with paint
We did color in the reindeer so it looks pretty cute :)
Today we just finger painted and are going to cut them into snowflakes so we can have snow on our Christmas day too!
Merry Christmas everyone! We hope you all have a great day!
Josh, Lindsey and Jackson

Valkenburg Christmas Market

Last weekend we decided to go to a Christmas market here in the Netherlands.  It was a little rainy but it was warm out so we thought why not.

We went to Valkenburg which is only about an hour drive for us.  The city was beautiful.  I have heard it called the Christmas city of the Netherlands.  There are hundreds of Christmas markets all around us, but the reason we decided to go to this was is because it is inside of an actual cave :)

Valkenburg is a really popular market to go to I guess and we had to wait in line to even get inside. Once inside it wasn't too terribly crowded, not like the market we went to last year in Dusseldorf where we couldn't even get through with our stroller. 

We walked around for quite a while and of course Jackson managed to spot a tractor at one of the boothes.  Man I tell ya, he has an eye for them!  We found a few little Christmas ornaments and some fresh sugar waffles dipped in white chocolate (delish). We ended up seeing most of the booths but the further along we got the hotter it became.  I was all of a sudden claustrophobic and ready to get it out NOW! I couldn't peel off my coat and scarf fast enough! 

So we made our way back out, avoiding the tractor boothes and walked around the cute little down town.  It was such a nice little city center with their decorations up, the stores were just calling our names (and Jackson's too).  After walking around for quite a while we thought we should head home, plus it was starting to rain again!

We get to the car and what do we find? A good ole parking ticket. BOOOOO!!! It turns out this wasn't just any old ticket though. Little did we (and the 3 other cars parked next to us) know, we were parked in a handicap spot. The ticket was for a whopping 340 euro. That is $449.00.  OMG!  We couldn't believe our eyes.  We're not just the type of people to park in handicap spots!!! We looked around and no sign to be seen except for a few spots down the road said, "the next 4 spots are for handicap parking."  So if you happened to be coming from the other direction, you would never see it!

What was supposed to be an nice afternoon out turned out to be not so nice!  We drove home in silence, both of us just mad!  And Jackson was mad to be back in the car!!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas Activities: Week 2

We were busy again this week with our advent calendar.  Last weekend we started off making sugar cookies. Not just a few but 11 dozen!! The recipe said it would only make 5. It was a lot but they were delicious. Here is how we spent the week

Decorating cookies and then the next day delivering cookies to neighbors

Painting and decorating Christmas trees
Making handprint Christmas trees
 This was so much fun, Jackson loved it.
Making reindeer
Jackson not so interested in this one.

Less than 10 days until Christmas!!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

What we've been up to this week :)

We made and decorated paper candy canes

Making paper plate wreathes

painting them

and playing with them :)

A not so kid friendly, make your own kid stocking kit

Today we were going to make snowman out of marshmallows.

Instead this kept happening :) so we gave up and just ate marshmallows!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Day 2

Today we made little snowmen out of cotton balls!  We had little googly eyes, cut out noses from paper, arms made from pipe cleaners and the mommy had a bow in her hair!  Jackson had fun for a few minutes helping me put the cotton balls on.  Then he thought it was best to make it "snow" in the house by throwing the cotton balls all over.  It was a mess but fun for all of us :)

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Advent Activities Calendar

In order to alleviate some winter time blues, I decided Jackson and I will have a special activity to do every day counting down until Christmas.  It has been pretty cold and it just gets dark so early and stays dark so late we just need a little change!! I found most of my ideas on Pinterest and I'm hoping Jackson will be as excited as I am to try them out!!

Day 1 or well day 25 I guess is to: Make the Calendar :)

Some of the other activities we have planned are: decorate Christmas cookies, deliver Christmas goodies to the neighbors, make homemade Christmas ornaments, Santas, etc. etc.

I'm hoping it will give us a little something to look forward to each day!! We both need it! We may have to improvise on some, like may a snow angel.  Who knows if we will get any snow here, but I hope for at least one day!! And I completely forgot to include any Sinter Klaas activities but when I was buying our supplies I found a bunch of fun things. So stay tuned to see what we have up our sleeves!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Almost 2 weeks ago already we went to Prague for the weekend.  I still love that I can say that, no biggie, I just flew to Prague for the weekend :)

We went with some really good friends of ours the Coffey's.  They have Liam, Jackson's best little buddy here.  It was Liam's mom, Jessica's 30th birthday so it was sort of a celebration trip! 

We were literally there less than 48 hours.  We got up at 4:30 Saturday morning to catch a flight out of Dusseldorf.  Luckily the flight is just under an hour and we were in Prague pretty much before the sun was up.  That gave us 2 full days there.  With a 1 1/2 year old that is pretty much all the time we need anywhere.

Saturday we spent the day walking around the city center and playing in parks. It was really quite chilly there and we were all bundled up, but it didn't stop us from having a great day!   They were having some sort of political demonstration there and no one really could tell us what it was about.  There were tons of people out, probably more out of tradition than for any other reason. 

Jewish Synagogue
Asking for help on the slide
Jackson and Liam playing in the park
We hit up a few Starbucks, since they are on practically every corner and we can't find them near us, and then it was nap time!  (for everyone) It gets dark really early so by the time Jackson was up we were going back out in the dark.  It was wonderful.  It gave us the feel of being night owls, which we all know is so not true anymore!  The city was amazing at night so beautifully lit. We hit up Old Town and the Astronomical Clock and then we enjoyed an amazing dinner at, wait for it.... McDonald's. :( Time just seemed to fly by and we were on a tight schedule for the boys not to have a melt down with out food.  We looked at restaurant after restaurant and we either couldn't fit or there were no child seats.  It never fails when we're traveling we eat McDonald's more than we ever would! After our tasty meal we headed back to the hotel and let the boys play in our room.  It was HUGE! It was nice for us all to just relax a while before bed time.

Prague at night
Astronomical Clock
Old Town
The next and final day in Prague we decided to walk to the castle.  We walked along the river and over the Charles Bridge. I never did look it up but there are lots of statues where people just touch one spot on it and get their pictures. Sort of odd, but I guess whatever!

Houses along the river
See the one shiny spot on this statue
Charles Bridge
We trekked it up the ridiculous hill/mountain while pushing strollers, and freezing and with 1 maybe 2 unhappy boys.  The walk took way longer than expected and I think all 4 of us parents were exhausted afterwards. Not sure whose idea it was to walk all the way but geez (pretty sure it was my idea...sorry) We took a quick couple of pictures but by then Jackson had just lost it!  He was crying and crying and crying.  He was cold and hungry! So guess what, it never fails Josh and I took him to McDonald's again! Keith and Jess found a much better restaurant and I think beat us done eating.  Oh well.  It happens I guess!!

Another park
Walking to the castle
View looking out, almost there
Catherdral in Prague
Entrance to the castle
After nap time again we just sort of walked around again and went back to Old Town.  The boys just loved it there.  There was lots of open space for them to run around and horses!  I'm pretty sure that was Jackson's favorite part. 

Playing in Old Town

The boys watching the horses

6:00 pm rolled around and we were off to the airport already. Prague was so beautiful, you don't see a lot of color most of the places we have been, but Prague really had so much and was so different from anywhere we have been!

What a great trip with some amazing friends!  One we will never forget!  Glad we got to celebrate with you Jess!!!