Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Why did the kids and grandparents pose on/by a pig..?

We don't know... We were walking a trail by a river and came upon this pig. Other people were taking pictures here so we decided to as well. I guess you could call it 'peer pressure'. Maybe some day we'll research it and find some great meaning behind this pig...who knows?

Not all of Brian's cousins could make our get-together this year, but here are several of the Aunts, Uncles, and cousins from Brian's Mom's side of the family.
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Our trip to Philadelphia

This past weekend we traveled to Philadelphia to see Brian's family. It was a quick weekend but we were able to fit in seeing both sides of his family, hit a couple of museums, and visit their church where Brian's Dad preaches. The first picture was at the train museum. The rooms were very dark, but there was an amazing set-up of trains of all sorts. They also had paintings, doll houses, amazing Christmas trees, etc.

If you are ever in Philadelphia you must visit the Franklin Institute Science Museum with your kids. Very hands on and many great exhibits for all ages of kids. We didn't even get to spend time in each area the day we went. Our favorites were walking through a heart, the big train room, a room all about planes, etc. Austin saw a clear box that had all the tools in it for open heart surgery. Then you stand beside this mannequin and at his chest is a video screen showing an actual heart surgery.

Reece was so excited to climb up and sit in a fighter plane. I had to lift him into it as the seat sits so low, but he loved being up high and checking out all the controls and knobs.

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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Austin's Christmas morning

Austin is definitely learning that big things come in small packages. Most of the things, on his wish list, were small items. His favorites were Wii games and more controllers from Aunt Nar and a D.S. game and more memory-for his camera- from Grandma and Grandpa.

Even breakfast was wrapped and put under the tree. Too much fun!

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Reece's Christmas morning

Reece couldn't be happier with his morning of gifts. His favorites were definitely his new camera from Grandma and Grandpa and his game boy from Aunt Nar. Oh the fun of being 5!

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Lindsey's Christmas morning

After the stockings we gathered all the presents from Aunt Nar and Grandma and Grandpa and spent a wonderful time seeing what the little ones got. We start with the youngest and they each take turns opening up the presents. I love that family tradition of taking turns(for when I was growing up) so a present gets fully appreciated by all three and not lost in the wrapping paper.

Lindsey asked for a lava lamp and a boom box. Aunt Nar was right on that lava lamp and here's a picture of Lindsey's excitement. And you can bet that Grandma and Grandpa got her a new boom box (hers was broken).

A few months back Aunt Nar took a picture of Lindsey and had a doll custom made to be her twin. They even have matching outfits. This doll is always at Lindsey's side. Too cute!

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The Stockings

This year was a first to be in Raleigh for Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. As everyone has told us, the Christmas Eve service was a special time of singing and scripture reading. The kids absolutely loved the fact that they sent around baskets full of sticky buns and cups of apple cider. They call this service the 'Love Feast'. Little kids got to stand on the chairs to sing Away in a Manger and we all lit candles for Silent Night at the end of the service. It was a wonderful time.
The next morning the kids (with the exception of Austin) were very ready to open presents at 8:00a.m. They have no idea that some kids get their parents up hours before that. We won't complain. Grandma thinks of everything that could possibly go into a stocking. The kids were just thrilled!

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A visit from the "snow angel"

The snow angel has visited our house but the problem is that she left us with no snow and 67 degrees on Christmas Eve.'ve never heard of the snow angel? Here's a picture for proof. :)
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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Tis the Season For.....

making our annual gingerbread house.....

And then watching the Charlie Brown Christmas while in a 'sugar coma'.
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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Handbell Christmas Concert

Another Sunday and another concert for the kids (we'll talk about Brian's day later...). In September the kids joined a newly formed homeschool handbell choir. The director had never had such a young choir, but tonight they were able to start off a concert with 4 songs they had learned. I was so proud of them, because it takes SO much concentration and counting and it sure felt like everytime they played a note - it was a solo note. So.....lots of pressure to get it down right.

It was also wonderful that Brian was able to come and hear their concert. Today he had 3 church services, two of his own concerts, and then they'll take everything down this evening. Basically left home at 6:30a.m. and will be home at??? The kid's handbell came right before Brian's last concert so I was thrilled he could see them perform.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

I don't say it enough.....

Today was my husband's only day off before heading off to 4 Christmas concerts (and he just finished up 3 rehearsals and of course a full Sunday before that.) Well...on this 'day off' he took a few kids to the Y, went to a 1850-1900's Christmas field trip with the kids and I, and sent regrets to a Christmas party so that we all could be home together tonight. To top it off, he made supper with his secret ingredient that he just discovered last week. I am so blessed! Thank you, Brian, for being such a wonderful husband and father!

Reece knows all about this 'secret ingredient' and he's not telling any one!

Time with Daddy. Priceless!
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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Kidz Praise Christmas Concert

Austin, Lindsey and Reece had their Kidz Praise Christmas concert on this past Sunday night. It was great hearing all the songs they've been working so hard on and really fun catching up with friends afterwards.

Lindsey, always our little pleaser, wanted to make sure she knew every single word of each song. So...the past two months she has been falling asleep to her Kidz Praise cd. She even had it on repeat, each night, so we'd go in late and turn it off before we headed to bed. Well, all her hard work paid off and she had her words down pat.

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Saturday, December 06, 2008

Christmas Stockings

My mother spent countless hours cross-stitching each of us a Christmas stocking. The kids get SO excited about their stockings and it often seems like it's the little things one puts into a stocking that really makes their Christmas.

The gift that keeps on giving.... Not only did Mom make the stockings, but she also sends a huge box of stocking stuffers each year. Trust me, she thinks of everything! She also does this a good month or more in advance. Mom is always planning WAY early. Why didn't I inherit that gene? :) This year she went over the top and some things may have to be wrapped and put under the tree. Thanks Mom! We treasure these stockings. Thanks also for always filling them up to over flowing!
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