day 331 - getting ready for christmas $

Today was Christmas related from start to finish. We woke up to snow blanketing the ground. The boys had thrown the chain for the dog halfway across the deck so I had to trudge out in my running shoes and pjs to go and find it.

An hour later the Christmas music was playing and I was chasing the boys through the house with Johnny Mathis playing in the background. They each had a broom with one of my shoes on the end of it and would end up throwing them out into the snow before I could catch them.

From there the day didn't slow down. The boys and I decorated for Christmas and

I made eight dozen cookies for tomorrow's cookie exchange.

From there the day went downhill. Ava fell victim to the stomach flu upon her return from a birthday party for one of her classmates. She was unable to go to the event she has been counting down to for the past week - the Santa Claus Parade. Ethan and Owen were feeling well so they got to go.

And then we had another man down. Poor Owen got sick at the parade and only Ethan was able to go to the fire hall to see Santa. Thankfully he didn't realize that Santa looked awfully familiar (my dad).

I type this several days after the fact. This is the look of a child who will spend the rest of this week extensively testing the whole "he knows if you've been bad or good so be good for goodness sake" theory.

Several hours after this moment, Ethan came down with the stomach flu too.

So it was a busy day. A day I am glad is over. I took lots of pictures, but this is my favourite. Almost eight years ago a crazy little puppy came home from the breeder. She had our undivided attention for four full years before kids entered into the mix. She went from first in line to fourth with no hard feelings whatsoever.

When the kids are sick she is right there. She is in their rooms checking on them and when the day has come to an end she lies in the hallway between their rooms to keep an eye on them.

Tonight three sick little kids went to bed and one loyal dog kept watch.