Monday, December 31, 2012


We let the kids open one present Christmas Eve.  It was a group/family gift and here they all are, dying to know what is in the long box that Christian is holding.  Too funny!  They sure do make it enjoyable to give them gifts.  We had so much fun this year watching them open their presents.
The surprise in the box was an official Red Ryder BB gun, given of course with much instruction to "not shoot their eyes out kids!"  The rest of the afternoon was spent target practicing at tin cans in the back yard.

We spent Christmas day at home which made the day relaxing and fun as we opened presents and had fun playing with new toys.
Aiden with his remote control hellicopter.

 Christmas evening we crossed the driveway to have dinner with Christian's parents and his brother and sister and their families.  I didn't get the camera out the whole day so there are no pictures but we had a delicious meal of the traditional fillet minion.  All the cousins also put on their traditional play that they work on every time we get together.  This year they acted out a number of the poems the kids have been working on for school.

Saturday we headed down to my parents and thankfully Christian thought to take some pictures because I still wasn't in the mood to take any.  I guess I just wanted to be "enjoy the moment" and not be bothered with pictures.  Weird, I know.  Anyway...
Patiently waiting to start unwrapping.

 I love this picture.  We tried at first to have the kids take turn opening one present at a time but soon mass chaos broke loose and it was a mad free-for-all.  That's ok, it was a joyful chaos anyway.
I love this picture of my niece.  Too cute!
This picture about sums up the theme of this year's gifts.  Home made gifts and book!  My sister Amy has some serious mad crochet skills that she has developed this year.  She made Claire this adorable bear cowl and and teddy bear.  What a thoughtful gift for our little "Claire bear."
This is not the greatest picture but Asher got this really awesome crocheted dragon and dragon book which he loves.

And then there were books, books and more books!  Grace received a couple Calla Edition books that she wants to start collecting.  Naomi got a couple Polo books of her own so we can stop checking them out of the library every time we go!  Other books included: Betsy Tacy, Swallows and Amazons, Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing, The Red Book, The Story of King Arthur and His KnightsPress HereDear Zoo, Toys Go Out and more.   Christmas is a great time to add to the home library.

We've also been doing some more house projects over the holidays and I will post pictures in the next couple of days when we finish.  I know I also neglected to post finish pictures of the girls room so I will add those to the next post as well.

And speaking of Christmas, here is our family Christmas picture that my lazy bum never got around to printing up and sending out to all our friends and family.  So there you go.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Mini Mom

With Lily being gone this past week visiting her friend Willie, I realized how beneficial it is to have a little dog in the house cleaning up all the little crumbs in the kitchen from 5 kids, and most especially a little messy one-year-old.  Mopping up the floor 3 times a day got old really fast so I decided it was time to implement a chore chart system again for the kids to make sure things got done.  They always helped out around the house, but I needed something more predictable and routine.  Besides, they needed a way to earn some extra money and allowance doesn't come for free around here.  :)

They have been doing a stupendous job this week, and Naomi even took it upon herself to put Claire in the Ergo while she did her chores in the morning.  Getting just a tiny taste of what it's like to be a mom, she decided it is HARD work!  Despite that emphatic statement she continued to carry her around anyway even though I told her she didn't need to.  Silly girl. 

Checking off jobs completed on the fridge.

Thankfully Lily is back and doing her job as our live Roomba, but thanks to her brief absence the chores are here to stay.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The happenings

Bird watching from the kitchen window.

I'm trying to teach myself how to scissor cut the boys' hair instead of clipper cutting it.  It's going ok.  I'm not giving up yet! 

Seeing a local performance of The Nutcracker with the Lindsay cousins.  The boys decided that men in tights was not for them.  Come to think of it, it really isn't for me either. {gag}

The annual trip to my parents' church to walk through the Living Nativity, 13 scenes depicting the whole gospel story.  Have you seen it yet?  You should!  It's free, not to far away and a great reminder of the real meaning of Christmas.
The prophets Isaiah and Jeremiah

The town of Bethlehem

The shepherds looking for the baby Jesus

The wise men talking with king Herod.

The wise men worshiping toddler Jesus.

Jesus calming the storm.

Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.

An angel flying through the air at the resurrection scene (ignore the totally bad lighting an picture)

The ascension scene.

Christian took the kids to see our favorite Celtic/folk singer Charlie Zahm last weekend at a local church for a Christmas concert.  While I love any opportunity to hear Charlie's rich baritone voice, the concert started at Claire's bedtime and I figured I wouldn't hear much of it anyway if I did go.  So hopefully I can make it next year.  Have you heard of him?  He's local, so you should be able to catch him somewhere else soon.

I have also been spending a lot of time working on a new blog for the puppies.  I spent an enormous amount of time last litter on corresponding with potential buyers, and I am hoping that having a blog will cut back on a lot of that.  Lily is visiting her friend Willie this week so I wanted to get this up and going. Check it out and let me know what you think.

Yes Claire, this is exactly how I feel most nights...

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