Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve...

Was a great one. A 1/2 day at work started the day off but it quickly moved to a beautiful beach afternoon. YES, the beach. A break in the weather led to a lovely CALM afternoon playing in the sand and walking along the water for over an hour.

What came next was the most delish dinner you could hope for. When do you ever have to opportunity to have not only crab, but shark, halibut, and wild steelhead along with sauteed chantrelle mushrooms? Oh I salivate just thinking about it and I am one full lady!

Next came the anxious waiting for Santa's arrival....


milkerrrrrrrcarrot juice for the reindeer....CHECK!!!

Grapes for the elves.....CHECK!!!!

And we have lift off. Or rather ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Santa can finally come.

What a wonderful day!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!!!!

We've had some eventful winter weather around here lately. Lots of rain, and in the last week or so, SNOW! Our home elevation is only 700 feet, so we hardly ever get snow that sticks. Just occasional big fat flakes that make us excited for the possibility of the white stuff, and very occasionally those picture perfect times where it does stick for half a day, (happens about once a year on average).
But, my regular, 3-4 time a week drive into work and the kids daycare/preschool goes over a near 3000 foot pass that DOES get the white stuff on a fairly regular basis in the Winter. I love it! Yes, it makes for some days that I can't get home, and have to spend the night close to work to ensure I'll make it back, (though it is still my dream that I'll get snowed in one day!) It also makes for eventful driving, but my trusty Subaru really can go over just about anything I'm finding out, and very safely at that. But more so, it's an adventure! Driving through snow, (or at least mellow snow fall, the blizzard like conditions are another story,) instantly makes myself and the kiddos in a better mood. There is something so serene and peaceful about seeing the sparkly fresh snow on the trees in the morning before descending down into Eureka to start my day at work.
Forrest getting his play time on Berry Summit. He LOVED that I pummeled the car with snowballs before we drove away!
Forrest also gets a kick out of telling his friends he gets to play in the snow before school, (on our brief 5 minute mini snow play session on this last Monday...perfect for fun with a 3 1/2 year old who hates jackets and when you aren't prepared with gloves!)
We think we live in the perfect place. For many reasons of course but also for the fact that we can have feet of snow just 20 minutes up the road to play in, sled in, and drink hot chocolate in....but just a smidgen of the stuff here at our home to remember that we do live in the mountains. Coastal mountain, NOT Tahoe mountains!!!(enough work to do on this ranch without snow shoveling involved!!!!)

Beautiful Snow Rise on the way to work. The sky was on fire! As we drove into town those same fire clouds turned dark and omnious and soon after this very spot was covered in blizzard conditions that Alex nearly got stuck in trying to drive over. Jack knifed big rigs, FEET of snow, crazy how quickly it can change!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Holiday Party Hardy

We had the opportunity to attend not just one, but THREE parties last weekend. To be fair one was a 40th  birthday party but still, compared to our normal social calendar this is a bit much! All were fun and on Saturday we took a childless night opportunity to attend my operating room work party ( fancy fancy... Alex even in a tie!)
My sweet friend's birhday followed which was great. Awesome crab, beer, and cocktails always goes down well!
The next day was our wonderful neighborhood Christmas shindig which was fabulous. Complete with absolutely delish food, and our wonderful generous neighbors, this was a lot of fun. Enjoy the following party pics!

Neighbors Jerry and Gary discuss the epic deck in the making!

Huge Candycane fights make Christmas complete!

I'm not sure what's going on here, but happy boys nonetheless!

Little boy party table!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Rudolph and more!

 Showing his sign language skills

Tonight we were treated to Forrest's annual preschool holiday party. He's not much for singing in public, but here is a taste of what our cute boy showed us tonight. He did so well! Staying still for three songs and singing with his friends. Complete with a rendition of " We wish you a Merry Christmas" in sight language! It was pretty special :-)

Monday, December 10, 2012

Fun with the little ones

The little steelhead that is. This time of year our home beach yields half-pounders, the young steelhead that are far less grand than the monsters that are lusted after, but still plenty fun! In fact wonderful fun if you are
3 1/2 years old and those big guys are really out of reach anyways.

In the midst of holiday happenings and viral funk we made it down to the beach as a family yesterday, and then Forrest and Alex made it down today while I was at work and T baby was at daycare.
Fun was had! There is something soothing about casting a line in a river that mellows even the most tired and stressed mama! I didn't catch anything, but Alex did manage to reel in several of the big little guys, much to the boys delight. Forrest who was rather happily playing on the bank also got to reel in one of the keepers which made his day. Yesterday Talin even got a shot with the super duper, (read---junker...but oh so good for thrashing toddler hands!) kid rod and was enamored with how the reel spun around and around.
Cheese ball Talin....this kid is sick? Who would have guessed it??
Forrest showing one of his "noooeeee Mamaaaaaaa" moments
We are so very thankful for days like these, winter days made a bit more bearable by decent, albeit cold weather and great river adventures. Sure there were meltdowns over refusals to wear clothes, (Forrest, as always,) and moaning and groaning and whining and coughing, poop from the big kid where it DID NOT BELONG, etc. But there was also a great fish dinner for our Monday night meal and an exhausted but just a bit more satisfied family who got to appreciate all that the December Trinity River had to give on these two days.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

A Weekend to Give Thanks....T-Day wrap up

Turkey day started with Alex taking one of our Toms for Our Friday Turkey dinner with the Carleton Family. We brined the bird and it was delicious. Very thankful! We left shortly after this for Oregon.
Talin coming out to see what's going on....Turkey Turkey!
Photo courtesy of J. Carleton
Good friend Sheelagh has already completed an absolutely fabulous post complete with wonderful pictures of our great Thanksgiving weekend in S. Oregon with her family, but here are a few more pictures. Please go to her blog for a great read! Her husband John has some amazing camera skills and his pictures are wonderful at capturing the moment! But, as a rundown, our two families met just 7 miles east of Port Orford Oregon at a wonderful cabin on the Elk River. The Elk in late November is famous for great salmon fishing. And this is a known fact as there were dozens and dozens and DOZENS of other drift boats on the river. But, alas, wonderful fisherman Alex with his sneaky drift boat access provided by the cabin we rented was able to hold his own amongst the pros and have a wonderful couple of days fishing.

Meanwhile all of the rest of us adults and kiddos had fun playing, hiking, walking to the fish hatchery, amongst all of the usual tidbits that go along with a normal day in a oh so excellent cabin on a holiday weekend, (playing on a three tiered bunk bed! Roasting s'mores in a oh so cool sun-room with a wood stove! Movie bliss---parents get a break, yay!!!) We also consumed no less than about 40 apples from our tree, one half of a huge pumpkin made into pumpkin pie/waffles/soup/ you name it!, and the majority of one 14 lb turkey! Sheelagh was nice enough to bring the rest and besides the above mentioned items, was the master chef in the kitchen, whipping up such delicacies as gluten free stuffing, terrific tacos,  aMAZING kiddie ramen, pumpkin bread and waffles, and the PIE!!!!!! She was truly the superb chef!
Tree house fun! Photo courtesy of J. Carleton

Now THAT is what I call an awesome bunk bed! Photo courtesy of J. Carleton

Blissful Book reading! Photo courtesy of J. Carleton

All 6 wonderful little faces at the fish hatchery

looking at the fish ladder...

This could be Forrest and Talin, (on a good day ;-) But it's Jonah and Talin! It was really great to see the kiddos get along with one another, and for the two soon to be 4 year olds, Jonah and Forrest, who are just 5 days apart, help the little brothers of the group.

There's a whole lot of kids in that great bath tub and one is even missing!

We are so thankful for great weekends like these. As Sheelagh so aptly said, not much sleep was had, but the whole experience was really priceless. From our family's perspective, being able to be a part of the Carleton's holiday weekend is so great because they are a family with not just two young kids, but FOUR WONDERFUL kids! The way they run their household, the parts of the day where they are super organized, (mealtimes, bathtimes, diciplining) and then the parts where the great free-spirited Sheelagh and John PLAY with their kids, truly treat them as people and friends was a pleasure to see. It teaches me, in my smaller, but still very much chaotic household, that it really does pay to be organized and timely with those certain things, and with other things, it certainly pays to be flexible, to put yourself in your kids shoes, which they are certainly doing a wonderful job at!

Till next year Carleton Family! Looking forward to great adventures with your big clan of little people!
The Turkey Dinner meal makers trying those drumsticks!!!
The whole gang!

Friday, December 7, 2012

3 Weeks :-(

3 weeks since my last post. Uggh. Life has been a bit nuts here in the Fulton household. Amongst great weekend trips, recovering from weddings, and now being attacked by the virus from hell, all in the middle of the busiest work month of the year, I'm struggling a bit to keep up, especially with the blog. As I sit here my little Talin baby, aka barking seal, is suffering with croup which has followed pink eye, and is surrounded by the humidifier. He is quite miserable. poor guy :-( I'm sipping on some mint tea, trying to will my sore throat away that has been plaguing me for the past week. Bed will come soon. Ahhh, I guess it is the season of illnesses, viruses, etc....
But, for a quick run down, yes we have been trying to keep up with the quickly approaching Christmas Holiday here in the woods! No Christmas tree yet, but we finally have decorations up, Forrest has his advent calendar going, and my shopping is getting done...almost done actually thanks to some online purchases and great local artisans festivals. And for other events of the past 3 weeks...

Not all sniffles, sad faces, and coughing here, this was just 3 nights ago, Brothers brushing their teeth before bedtime :-)

We've had a LOT of rain lately. This is our first dry weekend, and unfortunately our sickest weekend :-( But we took advantage of the wet weather last week and made yummy pretzel/Kiss/M&M treats(great to do with 2-5 year olds!) homemade tomato soup from our canned "summer in a jar" heirloom garden tomatoes, and some crafty gift tags.

Talin and I attended the office cookie party! Yummo! Izzy and Talin were the young ones of the group, and the cutest by far!

MMMM, everything was delicious!

So yes, we are a bit excited of course with our two little boys and the big day quickly approaching! Forrest I believe has captured more of that Christmas spirit than anybody and is doing a great job reminding us how good he is for Santa Clause, (whether or not it actually is true...;-) He is very excited to cut down our Christmas tree, which may be tomorrow, or next weekend depending on the heath status of our family. But truly he is loving it all and has stayed pretty healthy this month which I am thankful for!
Here's to our health and Christmas spirit in the weeks to come!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Tradition, passing it on!

This bassinet has been in my Dad's side of the family for 82 years! My Grandfather first slept in this bassinet as a newborn, and as you will see below, the rest is history! My Dad and his four brother's have all had the pleasure of this comfy little nest, and as have all of my cousins and my sisters and I. And now the next generation....my boys and my cousin's boys. Yes a LOT of boys in this family!
We are officially passing it on to my cousin Kyle and his wife Jen who are expecting little Vincent Stollmeyer any day now! I just hope it arrives on time!
Congratulations Kyle and Jen! From Grandpa Jerry to little Talin baby and everyone in between, you are having a little boy that will be surrounded by great family.