Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Take My Picture!

Abram turns into a little ham when the camera comes out. Even if it's not out, he'll sometimes stop what he's doing to pose and demand, "Take my picture!" How can I argue with that?

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Christmas Recap

Despite our attempts to keep it simple, December was pretty packed. Ward Christmas party. Marty's work Christmas party. Making fudge. Reading books. Walking through several blocks of Christmas light displays. Shopping. Wrapping. Quilting. Mod Podge. LOTS of Primary stuff for Church. Josh Groban's Christmas album. Choosing a live Christmas tree. Decorating the tree. Finding out that none of our colored lights worked. Singing. Family.

When Santa asked Grace what she wanted for Christmas, she didn't even have to think about it. "EVERYTHING!" she said. Um, can you say entitled?

Christmas Eve snacks

Christmas morning

Jacob was ecstatic over his new Bear Grylls pocketknife.

Aunt Constance and baby Brooke

Visiting Grammy on Christmas Eve

Cousin Lily

Abram and Grace played with this nativity set for days. My favorite arrangement was the one where Thomas the train was perched on top of the arch.

I'd have to say that one of the best things we did this year was attend a living nativity near here. A family we don't know puts on the nativity in a makeshift stable in their backyard. There is a musical program, live animals (the Wise Men walk in with three alpacas!), simple costumes, and a real baby in the manger. All of the parts are played by children. There was a beautiful, peaceful spirit there as we took a night off from the busy-ness of the season, sat on hay bales with our children in the chilly stable, and listened in awe to scripture and song. It was the highlight of our Christmas.

Monday, January 2, 2012

A Few Highlights

I thought I'd better post a few pictures of what we've been up to the last few months before we breeze into 2012. (You know, the year I resolve to post more on this blog.) So, catching up...

This is our "Thankful Tree," the result of a pre-Thanksgiving FHE on gratitude. I love the variety of blessings written by the children, from the everyday to the profound.

Mr. Peeps came back this year, right on schedule. (See this post for the backstory on our elf.) It was adorable to watch Abram jump out of bed every morning and run to find him. He would check every previous place that Mr. Peeps had appeared and say "Nope, Mr. Peeps all gone!"

At our homeschool co-op the children made candy trains. I have never seen our kids more excited about an activity in their lives. EVER.

All of them got very creative. Isaac's train features an armed robbery, an atomic bomb, and Santa drowning in a glacier lake.

Grace has a morbid streak that makes us laugh and raise our eyebrows at the same time. She created a hospital. This was entirely her own idea. When she had finished, she gave me a tour. "Look, are the bears, and here is the doctor. The bears are laying down in their beds and they're DEAD. Ha ha ha!!" Weird.

Abram helped grind oranges and cranberries for Marty's traditional Thanksgiving cranberry relish.

Thanksgiving dinner. Marty's Mom was able to join us this year.

Every year, my mom gives our family a "first day of snow" book - to be opened on, know. The children anticipate this day for weeks and eagerly watch the skies for the first flake. Luckily for them, we got a dusting one day in November. The rest of our winter has been extraordinarily dry.

Other than the photographed moments, we have been busy learning, serving, playing, reading, organizing, and preparing for the holidays. More to come...