I absolutely know how fortunate we are to have my parents love my kids the way that they do. When they come over and it's complete chaos, they say, "It's so fun!" When one of the kids gets cranky and fussy, they say, "What a sweetie. Let me cuddle with him." When somebody tries to sneak a treat in the kitchen, they grin and say, "How cute. He's probably just hungry." They definitely see our kids through rose colored glasses...and I wouldn't have it any other way.

A little bit ago, I realized that I didn't have any recent pictures of the kids individually with Oma and Opa so we popped a couple chairs in the doorway and swung open the front doors for some beautiful light.

Isn't my mum a cutie?

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I love the way that my parents get into the kids' worlds. Listening to their ideas, cuddling, playing their favorite games with them. My dad builds for hours with the boys, literally.

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The other day, all five cousins were at the table and Opa gave lessons in drawing cartoon dogs. He cheered them on all the way.

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When I was little, my parents let us muck around with all sorts of art supplies. We made doll cars, dioramas, and made huge, gluey posters. Nothing was really off limits except for my mum's sewing scissors. Heads would roll if she caught us using them on paper!

Last trip to Vancouver, my mum put all the kids in her "pottery shirts" to protect their clothes from paint and they happily created art.

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Opa kept Tymen busy with play-doh which he opted for. I wonder where the boys get the "crazy gene" from.

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Last shot is of my mum and Jasper in the Giraffe sweater she carefully crafted for her Giraffey loving grandson. Only Oma. Last time when Jasper got his week by himself at Oma and Opa's house, he called and crowed, "Guess what, Mama?? I'm not your boy any more! I'm Oma's boy!!"

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I've been counting my blessings lately. Every day is a gift.

Speaking of valuing our time and the ones we love, I have shared this on facebook but also wanted to share it here on the blog. I have had some inquiries about gift certificates. I do have those available and though I will be increasing my rates sometime around the end of January, if you would like a gift certificate now for Christmas, you can purchase it for 2011 prices no matter when the certificate is redeemed next year.

Maybe you could do a grandparent's session....a couple hours of playing around together and all the fun documented. I just sold a gift certificate for one of those sessions next year and I LOVE that idea!