Friday, December 31, 2010

A Season of Family

This holiday season was filled with so much family. Our lives are abundantly filled with people who love and care for us. We don't want each other to fail, to feel pain, or to need. We love to make each other laugh and push until there is progress. I am beginning to understand that Family is a miracle in and of itself - I am blessed to be able to witness it.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Homemade Christmas

As I sit here approaching Midnight on December 22, I begin getting a vision of my girls all grown up and reminiscing about their mother. Thinking back to when the crazy old lady used to make Christmas presents. HA!! Who would do such a thing? Who would spend 3 hours making "15-minute" pajama pants and matching sleep masks on December 22nd??
Why? Why? Why?
The joke would be on them though - because I would pull out these pictures. I'd tell them about the time they insisted on making stockings for their dolls.
How they lovingly pushed and pulled the needle through the fabric - cursing in their 4 & 7 year old way when the thread came out...
Then we all would be reminded that it is not really about the end product (right? RIGHT!) It is just about the love we put into making it. Those peaceful moments when we are concentrating on who the gift is for and the reasons we love them.
My grown-up girls would then stop laughing at me and BEG me to make "15-minute" pajama pants for Christmas again!!! But, I would say no... because what crazy lady makes Christmas presents?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Polar Express

Have you read the book? Can you still hear the bell?
We made the decision to join everyone at the tradional "Polar Express" train ride in Williams, AZ. Donning matching P.J.'s and all - we had no regrets!
I just love these pictures of the cousins - they care about each other so much and it is so neat to see.

This is Grandma's idea of a good time... 8:00 at night with 6 kids under 7 waiting for a train!! What is Christmas for if you can't make your Grammy happy? (At least once every few years!)
Santa made a special stop and told Audrey - the only thing he wasn't able to bring on Christmas is a new front tooth...that was the tooth fairies job! She thought that was pretty dang funny...

It was a really loud, err fun trip and if I didn't hear the bells before I certaintly can now :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Tree 2010

We got our Christmas stuff out and Carissa got in...
Everybody must have touched each ornament 10 times and asked "where did we get this one?" I think that is just a Mom's job to know those things. It is too bad I have early onset Alzheimer's and can't remember half of them. On the plus side my OCD was turned way down because I resisted the urge to have everyone back away so I could decorate alone. The memories of trimming the tree should be sweet ones, right?
I think it turned out lovely...

In the spirit of the season our family is donating some items Monday night to local families in need. I have been bugging the girls about it a lot and having them think of things they don't use anymore and want to give. Today I was completly taken off guard.
Audrey asked a question I couldn't answer (and that just might be a first) "Mom, why isn't Santa going to those kid's houses?"
That is like asking me why some people get cancer or little kids are abused.
What do you say? So I said what I thought was the best answer and I hope she believed me.
"Santa asked Daddy and I if we wouldn't mind helping him, help these families."
Dang it if I almost believe myself...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Full of Thanksgiving

I can not remember the last time I had such a good Thanksgiving. This year we decided to camp at Cattail Cove State Park and it was just the right mix of spending time with family and just relaxing at the campsite.

The whole time I felt like I took sooo many pictures, then of course, I get home and feel like I have NONE!! Here are a few for the memory books...

Carissa and Katie - such beautiful girls - hit if off in minutes and really enjoyed each other's company.

This is the whole gang (minus Justin taking the pic) under the London Bridge, which I must admit, I totally take for granted. It was so pretty under the bridge and I will never forget just walking around with my Grandma. Despite that fact that she has had a crazy hard year her eyes were just taking in the moment watching the kids play and loving the lights.

It is the first time in a while she has looked at peace with the moment. It is truly amazing watching how her life has evolved and changed. I am only seeing it as a granddaughter but what a story. What an amazing story.
On Saturday the water was so peaceful. Justin took Carissa and I out on the lake and in our canoe. Never thought I would just ride around in a canoe... but it's nice. Especially when you can just sit back and eat trail mix. My kind of speed :)

We came home, unloaded the trailer and started the week off going to Monday Night Football. Here is the view from our seats. It was super fun ~ especially watching the 49ers huddle...dang that have that down.

There never seems to be a dull moment in our life and now here comes December.
So much to do - lose 10 pounds, make cookies but don't eat them, buy gifts, remain centered on Christ, decorate to the nines, throw together some parties, crafts and more crafts, send out cards, go see lights, say nice things (Santa is watching) don't forget to work, ..... ahhhh. 25 more day... ready, set, go!