Thursday, December 6, 2012

Shepherds & Monsters

We've been keeping up our advent calendar around could I forget, when 3 kids are asking me about all day?  :)  Day 3 - I made Christmas cake pops for the kids and they The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.  Day 4 - We went to Benjamin's school and listened to all the kids sing Christmas songs and recite Christmas poems.  Ben got to dress up as a shepherd. 
Day 5 - We began reading the birth story of Jesus as told by Luke.  We read the first 2 chapters.  The kids had so many questions...I love reading the Bible with children.  Their hearts and minds are so much different than ours. 
Day 6 - Tonight we will ready 2 more chapters from Luke. 

Today I ordered our Christmas card!!  I am sooo excited!  Last year was the first year, in 8 years, I didn't send out our Christmas cards.  I was depressing.  I love having our family photo made and sending it to our family and friends.   :)
Noah turns 3 next Sunday.  He is having a monster party.  This years party will be a challenge because I started a cake pop business earlier this year and I have orders to fill as well as a party to plan.  But, I'm up for the challenge and the lack of sleep!
I'm enlisting the kids to help me this time with painting props for the party.  :)
Kevin painted the outside of our house today.  We picked out the paint color a year ago, so we were so excited to finally see it on OUR house!
I think Sarah might be getting her next 2 teeth because she woke up last night and stayed up for 2 hours just hanging she did for 3 LONG weeks before she got her first 2 teeth.  So, I might have lots of late nights hanging out with my sweet girl. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

What is an Advent calendar??

We have done advent calendars since Kaitlin was 2.  I have always loved seeing the kids faces as they open up their little piece of chocolate for that day.  But, this year, I wanted to do something different...something to show the kids that this season should be more about doing good for others, spending time together, celebrating Jesus' birth and just being selfless.
So, what exactly does "advent" mean?  It means "coming".  We celebrate these days leading up to Christmas as a season of preparation for Christmas.  As Christians, we prepare for celebrating the birth of Jesus by remembering the longing of the Jews for a Messiah. We’re reminded of how much we ourselves also need a Savior, and we look forward to our Savior’s second coming even as we prepare to celebrate his first coming at Christmas.
For day one, we watched a Christmas movie, Charlie Bown's Christmas.  Later that evening we went to friends house to enjoy the Parade of Lights on Eagle Mountain Lake.  Then we ate chili and stew and hung out with great friends. 
Tonight (day two), the kids made chocolate covered pretzels with sprinkles for their teachers. They all did everything all on their own! Even Noah did!
Sarah got chocolate tonight...thanks Daddy!
We are loving Christmastime!  It's been in the upper 70's all week so we've been spending quite a bit of time outside riding bikes, raking leaves, jumping in leaf piles and going on walks. 
We got the 2 trees for the kids rooms put up the day after Thanksgiving and set up the big tree the next day.
November 23rd, Sarah got her 2 bottom teeth.  It's crazy that she's already 10 months old.  All of the kids are still completely in love with her!  She is the sweetest little baby ever.  She's very content, a great sleeper, great eater and the best snuggler ever! 
We had a fun Thanksgiving at our house.  Lots of food, quality family time and lots of leftovers!
In October we went to MainStay Farm!!  Kevin got to come this year and he loved it.  We went with the Roberts family again.  :)
My 10 year high school reunion was in October as well.  Here's me and my hot date!
The kids were just as cute as can be in their Halloween costumes!
Noah LOVES grasshoppers (aka "hahoppers").

Benja, as he calls himself now (& actually everyone calls him that now, haha!!), turned 5 in September!  We had a super fun camping/fishing themed party for him.  I think everyone had a great time.  We even roasted our own hot dogs and made smores.
In September, Noah got to meet his favorite people ever, Bob & Larry!!
I hope to keep you up to date on our advent well as the rest of our fun times!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Texas Traditions

In Texas it's tradition to take pictures in the beautiful bluebonnets!! We found a huge field this year and got some cute pictures of the kids.

On April 2nd Kiley was in the car talking to Sarah and Sarah LAUGHED for the first time!!  It was so sweet and Kiley couldn't have been happier!!!
Kaitlin, Kiley and Ben are all signed up for baseball.  Kaitlin hit a homerun at her first practice!!  She also did so good catching and throwing.  She's the only girl on her team too!  Kiley did really good at her practice too!  She hit the ball off the T and fielded ground balls like a pro.  :)  Ben has his first practice tomorrow.
Our beautiful girls.
Ben loves to pose with all the treats I make.  He is my biggest helper in the kitchen!  :)

Kaitlin drew a picture of our family!!
We had an Easter egg hunt at our church.  Kaitlin and Ben were so happy that they each found a prize egg!  I love our church!!

We also went to an egg hunt at another nearby church.  They had the coolest petting zoo ever!  It had a camel, huge turtles, baby chicks and so many other animals!  They also got their faces painted, rode a carousel and rode ponies!
We went to my mom's on Easter for lunch and an egg hunt. Neil and Tiffany came too. It was so cute watching them all run around trying to get all of the eggs.  

Then, we went to Kevin's cousins house for dinner and another egg hunt.  Every year we do a silly string fight.  The kids LOVE it!!  This was Noah's first year to squirt people and he had such a fun time!  Here's the big kids before their hunt.

That next Friday, Tera, Makynli, the boys,Sarah and I went to the zoo. It was fun and I can't wait to go back again with the girls!

I made my first fondant bow!  And, I finally started my own cake pops/cake/cookies business.  It is going fantastic and I love it!!

We were having a ridiculous amount of caterpillars for a few weeks.  Noah kept picking them up!  GROSS!!  But, now we have beautiful butterflies everywhere!

Ben loves to pick flowers (actually, they all do)!!!
And blow bubbles!

Everyone's growing up so quickly and it's making me so sad!! 
Sarah started rolling over from belly to back 3 weeks ago, and now she is doing it all the time.  I love the look of "whoa" on her face everytime she does it!  She smiles so BIG everytime anyone talks to her.  She sleeps between 12-15 hours every night.  She is such a great "go with the flow baby"!!  She loves to suck on her hand.  She'll spit her binky out and put her fist right in.  :)
Noah is really starting to talk!  Within the last month he just suddenly has so much to say...sentences even!!  He can tell me when he's hungry, wants a drink, wants to go potty and so much more!!  When he wants juice he says "apple boof".  LOVE IT!!!  He loves to dance.  He really likes to dance with Kaitlin to all the Disney channel songs.  Ernie, Elmo, Mickey Mouse and Cars are his favorite right now.  When he sees planes flying he points and says "Mommy,Mommy,Mommy..." until I acknowledge that he sees a plane (or whatever is in the sky that he sees)!  He's noticing tractors on the side of the road now too.  His favorite color to spot is purple and he says it so well!  I get so excited every time he talks to me or anyone else!!  He (well, all of us!!) is just so much happier now that he's talking!  And, since he just feels like being super awesome all at once, he is finally potty home.  He won't tell me he needs to go when we're out.  Probably because I put him in a pull-up.  But, with 5 kids I just can't convince myself to take him out in underwear.  In time, I'll be brave and just get over it!  He also loves to be outside.  Everytime I make him come in, he crys.
Benjamin is so smart!  He can add, knows his letters, he's learning the sounds they make, he listens so well at church and answers the questions about the stories!  His favorite thing to do is play outside.  He's such a sweet boy and loves his Mommy so very much!!!  When he's not being good he likes to say he learned it from boys in his class at preschool so it's not his fault...haha!  Crazy boy!  As silly as he is, he's also very shy.  :)  When people he doesn't know too well talk to him, he acts like he can't hear them!!
Kiley is still the sweetest thing ever!!!  She loves her baby sister with all her heart.  Even after 3 months she still wants to hold her everyday.  :)  She's a girly girl, but loves to get outside and play.  She'll sometimes change outfits a couple of times a day.  She can read so well!!  And she loves to read me the books she brings home from school.  I remember how frustrated she was when she was learning to read, so it's so great to see her proud of herself!  She's my little bundle of joy!!
Kaitlin is still very in to reading.  At her school they have a program called AR.  She is in the top 10 of the entire school for AR points!  After kids read a book they take a test on the computer and receive AR points.  We are so proud of her!!!  She's such a big help with all of her brothers and sisters.  Without her help I would go crazy some days.  Kaitlin has such a kind heart.  All of our kids do.  They genuinely care for other people.  She loves to draw too.  She always has loved drawing!  Time is flying by and she is growing up quicker than I ever imagined!  :(  Here's a picture Kaitlin drew of Daddy, hahaha!!

Kevin and I are so blessed!!  Can it get any cuter than this?!

I am so thankful for each and every day I have with my kids and Kevin.
I can't wait to see my 3 munchkins play their first baseball games this weekend!  We are all super excited!
I'll leave you with a thought from pastor Andy Stanley.  "Love is a verb, not just a noun."  What are 2-3 ways you can show your spouse you love (verb) them?!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Life with 5...

Life with 5 munchkins has been so great! Everyone is helping and things (most of the time) are flowing smoothly. We all have our meltdown days, but we still make it through the day!
Kiley made a dinosaur project for school! She came up with and did everything on her own...even painting the outside of the box pink! :)
"God's hands are so strong. He eats a lot of vegetables." - Benjamin :) My babies love God so much! This was just one of the many random things Ben said last month.
Kaitlin played "Jack and the Beanstalk" on the piano in her school talent show. She played perfect! Our friends, the Roberts Family, came out to watch her perform. After the show we all went to Cici's for a couple of hours.
Noah was being sneaky one day and got a frozen waffle & syrup all by himself! No plate...syrup everywhere. He was so proud of himself!!! :) He was too precious for me to be mad!
Here's Sarah in her lil sis shirt when she was 3 weeks new!
Here's our baby girl at 3 1/2 weeks new!
The boys were playing outside one day after it had rained. I turned my back on Noah for a minute...and this is what happens!
I almost yelled...almost! Then I saw how much fun he was having, so I ran inside, got my camera and enjoyed the craziness!!
On the 8th of this month was our 9th wedding anniversary!! We didn't do anything too special this year. Just snuggled up and watched some TV together...ya know, a typical night for us! :) I love this man!
By the time Sarah was 4 weeks old, she doing so good at "tummy time"! She could lift her head up. Here she is at 6 weeks!
We took Sarah to our favorite place...the park for a hike! She slept the whole time, so I guess it was just as peaceful of a place to her as it is for us!!
Noah LOVES Sarah! He loves being a big brother. His favorite thing to do is give Sarah her binky.
He also is a big helper when it's diaper changing time!
Sarah turned 1 month!
My sister-in-law Tera makes bows/headpieces, so I got some made for the girls!
When Sarah was about 5 weeks old, she started smiling when I talked to her!!! Now she is smiling all the time. BIG precious smiles! Here is the first smile I was able to capture! (March 14th)
She smiled so big 5 days later, we found out she has dimples!
During Spring Break we went to Dinosaur Valley State Park. We took the kids fishing and they had the best time!!
Kiley caught 2 fish!! The only fish caught that day too!!
Noah didn't fish. He played with worms, rocks and sand the entire time! He sneaked up to Kaitlin and held a worm up to her face. She turned away with a look of disgust on her face while he's in the background laughing!! I love this candid picture!!!
My sweet Sarah enjoyed the outdoors too!
We attempted kite flying too, but the wind just wasn't there!
The next day we went to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. First thing we saw were the awesome buffalo!
Feeding the animals was so exciting! The kids also liked not having to sit in their car seats, haha!
Noah's hand is in this animal's mouth!!!
This silly giraffe stuck it's tounge out the whole time.
A baby rhino!! It was so precious.
Someone let a crazy monkey in the car! :)
The day after we got home, we went to Wichita Falls so we could meet Colin! He was born about 12 hours after Sarah. Here's Colin and Sarah at 7 weeks new.
St. Patrick's Day was the next day. We had green eggs, cinnamon rolls, and milk. The kids colored a shamrock. They all wore green too! We had ChickFilA for dinner and they had green lemonade!
I got to make a cake and cake pops for a sweet lady at our church for her baby shower. They were so fun to make. I made the pops to match the cake color.
It was delicious.
I was talking with the girls about kidnappers. I told them that smart, pretty girls like them could get kidnapped. Kiley looked at Kaitlin and said, "If the kidnapper tries to take you, tell him you're not smart". These silly kids!!
Sarah enjoying some tummy time at 7 1/2 weeks. She is getting so good at holding her head up and looking around.
Kaitlin wanted to do a jump picture! It turned out awesome!!
Their best bud Shiloh spent the night. This was her first sleepover at a friend's house and she did so good! They all had a great time.
Kaitlin is so proud to be able to stand up and hold Sarah. She's such a big girl now. And Noah thinks he can just hold her when he wants to. Haha!
Kiley lost her first tooth today! She was trying to take off a wristband from a skating party and she used her teeth. It made her tooth really loose and she pulled it out later that night! Crazy girl. They also had such a fun time at a skating party yesterday.
My sweet Kiley is getting so big! :)
I made some girl sock monkey cake pops!
Tonight we did bluebonnet pictures! I got some great ones, but I can't wait to go back again and take more. I've got so many ideas.