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Canyon & Friends

You know how some women are annoyed that their husbands are late because they stopped at the bar after work? I don’t have that problem. My husband was late because he stopped at the thrift store. And yeah. I was annoyed. Until he showed me his score. A Tenth Anniversary Tickle Me Elmo for $2 and a Bilibo seat for $1.50!

Canyon luvs his Elmo.

I have to say we love him too. He really is kind of hysterical, especially if you tickle him three times in a row. I filmed it but I am too rushed to put it together for the blog right now.

Canyon brought out some of his favorite friends to play together.

I am thinking this week will be good thrifting because people clearing out for the new year and to make room for all the new toys. Oh yeah. Maybe we should do that too…


River & Raven December 29

Thanks Kim for the cute Superman onesie!


Christmas Dinner

I used to get crazy with the Christmas meal. Elaborate menus with tons of ingredients, long prep times and hours of cooking over the hot stove. The dining room and table would be all decked out in holiday finery-each year a different color scheme and theme-and there were those festive Christmas Crackers with toys and paper crowns. I spent a fortune and was so overwhelmed that I could barely enjoy it.

And I burned out. I stopped entertaining as much for the big holidays.

But this year I was inspired. I wanted family at my house and the menu would be super simple. Super simple but super cute!

Veggies trays that look like trees!

Pizza shaped like a candy cane and individual ornament pizzas! A simple pineapple fruit salad, guacamole and homemade mini apple pies rounded out the meal. Oh, and Mom brought a ham and rolls. Yes, it took some energy but I had so much fun with it! I got more satisfaction from those veggie trays than I ever did with an elaborate entree.


Run! Run! It’s Rudolph!

Last year we raided target when the Christmas decorations dropped to 75% off and picked up an inflatable Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer. Canyon has never seen the TV show so he is not interested in Rudolph as a loveable Christmas icon. He just sees him as a giant, terrifying monster.

I’m not sure he’s wrong.

When we first put up the decorations Canyon was not happy with that Reindeer of the Damned…”

Canyon was so upset by him last night that I had to try to drag him kicking and screaming into the house. I was so tired and frustrated that I wanted to just grab a scissors and stab the inflatable reindeer to death shouting, “There! He’s Dead! ARE YOU HAPPY NOW?!” But I decided that permanently traumatizing my son was not a good idea so instead we will move Rudolph to the other side of the yard.

Well we haven’t bothered to climb under the house and unplug him so he is still there, waiting.

Rudolph aside, Canyon loves the outdoor lights. We have them all hooked up to a remote control so we can turn them on and off without going outside. BL-Before Lights-Canyon would start his morning by crawling into bed with us for morning snuggles and milk. AL-After Lights-he starts his day by racing down the stairs, running to the living room and whipping open the shutters and waiting for us to turn on the lights by saying, “Ready…Set…Go!”, over and over until we come and turn on the lights. And then he says it again so we can turn them off. And then again so we can turn them on. You get the picture. It’s gotten so annoying that on Christmas Night we just surrendered and gave him the remote. The neighbors must have wondered what the heck was going on. Lights on. Lights off. Lights on. Still on. Lights off!

The other day I had a horrible thought. What would happen if Canyon raced down the stairs, ran to the window, opened the shutters and BAM! Rudulph was right up against the window staring at him?

The thought of this makes me break into hysterical laughter. I brought it up to John.

“So I was thinking, what if one morning Canyon raced down the stairs, ran to the window and…”

John cuts me off, “And Rudolph was right there looking in? Oh yeah. I thought of it too.”

We both laugh maniacally and try to figure out how Canyon would react. Canyon’s a hard little man to anticipate when it comes to emotions and reactions so he might not scream in absolute terror but I am sure it would scare the bejesus out of him. Or it might not. He might be startled and then laugh.

But we will never know because we WOULD NEVER DO THAT! No matter how badly we want to. No matter that John and I have been giggling about it for four days now. No matter that we have been upping the stakes. “What if he came out of his room and Rudolph was there in the hallway?” “What if he opened his eyes in his crib and Rudolph was there staring at him?”

We are evil in thought but not in deed. But it would be so funny! But we will never know. We are not those crappy parents who do something mean or crappy to their kids so that they can become Youtube sensations. We do not want to end up on Tosh.0.

Jimmy Kimmel maybe…


Does He Know It’s Christmas Time At All?

That’s the number 1 question we have heard this holiday season. “Does Canyon know it’s Christmas” or “Does he get it?”
The answer is no. Not at all.

On Christmas Eve we drove out to Mundelein to visit with John’s family and all of the children had big piles of presents to open. The cousins-age 1-4, went crazy, as most little kids do. Racing back and forth, tearing open the packages and gift bags, waving the item around and then moving on to the next box. Canyon was upstairs watching the ceiling fan and jumping on the bed-which he had been doing for over almost two hours. John carried him down the stairs, kicking and screaming to open his gifts but he was too wound up from the joy of multiple ceiling fans to even consider a new toy. I tried to explain to the family that Canyon would appreciate the gifts later on, but he just didn’t understand the concept of unwrapping multiple presents.

He didn’t need the presents to have an amazing time. Canyon was in full on bliss mode with the ceiling fans. There is not a toy on earth that could have made him happier than watching those ceiling fixtures spin.

We didn’t even try to have the “Oh Santa was here!” moment on Christmas morning. We didn’t even wrap presents. Through out the day we would give him a little gift to enjoy-A Santa Mr. Potato Head, a Christmas Magna-doodle, a musical shaker that looks like a banana (that was entertaining), and a great new Tie Dye t-shirt. He also got gifts from my side of the family and John’s mom. The gift he was the most interested in? Raven’s talking Laugh and Learn puppy which is for ages 6months and up.

At the end of the night we remembered the closet full of Yo Gabba Gabba toys we bought on Craigslist this fall and had been saving for special occasions (which for us is whenever we feel like watching Canyon get crazy excited) so we pulled out the Singing Dancing Brobee!

You can’t go wrong with Canyon and Yo Gabba Gabba or Sesame Street.

Having a kid who loves to get a new toy or shirt but doesn’t desire, want or wish for anything is great. You can relax knowing that he will be happy with his gifts, won’t be disappointed if he doesn’t get something he wanted and won’t be jealous of what others received. It is win win for everyone!


Peace, Love & River


Christmas Canyon

Wrangling Canyon for a staged photo shoot is not as easy as it once was. Especially one that requires low light and props…

John came into the room while I was dragging bunches of lights around and setting them up in front of the tree.

“What are you doing?”
“Setting a trap for Canyon.”
“You really think that’s going to work?”
“I have to try!”


Merry Christmas From Canyon, River & Raven!