We had a quiet Thanksgiving... just the three of us (and Mr. Oliver, of course). I made a turkey breast, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole and pumpkin chiffon pie. I started cooking at noon, when Kiefer went down for a nap, planning to have dinner when Kiefer woke up. I figured he would wake up at 1:30 or 2:00 as he normally does, but it was 2:30 and Kiefer was still sleeping. Roel and I were so hungry because we hadn't eaten anything for lunch, so we actually woke him up so we could have dinner! Kiefer had some turkey, but once he tasted the cranberry sauce, that's all he wanted! After dinner, we walked to the park and Kiefer went down the slide many, many times.
Sinterklaas arrived in the Netherlands in the middle of November. Thanks to the internet, Kiefer was able to watch Sint's steamboat from Spain dock in Almere. Oma had sent over some Zwarte Piet hats, which Roel and Kiefer had fun wearing. Roel had to show Kiefer how to set out his shoe so Sint would leave him a little gift. It is very important not to forget Sint's horse, Schimmel, so Kiefer left a carrot in his shoe. Sure enough... the next morning, Kiefer found a little gift. He received some trains to add to his Thomas collection.
The big day of celebration is the eve of Sinterklaas' birthday, December 5. This year, Kiefer received a very special gift... a week long visit by Grandma and Grandpa! They arrived in the afternoon, so when we got home after work/daycare, there they were! An hour or so later, we heard loud knocks on the front door and when we looked outside, we found a big bag of gifts from Sinterklaas. Kiefer wasn't too sure about the big burlap sack at first, but as soon as he got a peek at the presents inside, he was very excited. Kiefer has become quite good at tearing off wrapping paper and he quickly opened gift after gift.
He received quite a few Thomas the Tank Engine related gifts, including a tent, push toy and socks. After Kiefer unwrapped each present, he demanded that Roel take it out of the box so he could play with it. Needless to say, Kiefer had lots of fun.
Over the weekend, Grandpa was very busy installing new light fixtures and programmable thermostats. He also put together a toy box for Kiefer. Grandma and I concentrated on decorating the Christmas tree. Roel and I went to work on Monday and Kiefer went to daycare, but we stayed home on Tuesday to spend some quality time with Grandma and Grandpa. We went to Yankee Candle in the morning to see Santa. Kiefer thought Santa was OK, but he loved the train table and trains in Santa's Workshop! Grandma and Grandpa offered to watch Kiefer on Wednesday and they had so much fun that Kiefer stayed home on Thursday, too.
Kiefer got to try chocolate for the first time this month! I bought a chocolate advent calendar and since the pieces of chocolate are so small, I thought they might be a good size for Kiefer. Well, he absolutely loves it. Now he will point to the calendar and try to say chocolate.
Now that I have finished coursework (forever), I have time to bake some cookies this weekend. Right now it is snowing and by the time it is finished we're expected to get 6-12 inches (15-30 cm). Kiefer and I put on our snow suits and boots and went outside this afternoon. I was armed with my video camera and camera to capture Kiefer's reaction. (Hopefully Roel will be able to post the video soon). He just stood there for a while and eventually felt the snow--he refused to wear his mittens. He tasted the snow and then he tried to walk in it. It was definitely a challenge, but he thought it was fun. Tomorrow we're going to take the sled out and give Kiefer a ride on it around the back yard. We'll probably sled down a little hill with him, too!
We're going to have a quiet Christmas at home... we're staying at home. Wishing you and your family happy holidays!
April, Roel & Kiefer the little snow man