Sunday, December 20, 2015

Soak this in.

Christmas is a few days away. I can't believe it. It is my hope to have the blog "caught up" on our holiday merry making before the big day arrives. The best way to achieve that is by skipping the part where I overshare my thoughts and feelings and simply focus on sharing pictures (with minimal commentary). Can this be done? Wish me luck.

With Andrew away on business and a Mom who was feeling under the weather, we've had some quiet days at home. Even so, I tried to sprinkle in the merriment when possible. It makes me sad how quickly this month has passed by. My children would tell you that I am wrong. December is crawling by at a snail's pace. I blame their excitement. Their anticipation levels continue to soar which makes them both jittery and impatient. I love observing their pretend agony and pain caused by all this waiting. :)

Shoot. Look at all those words. I haven't even shared a photo yet. So far my plan to skip the blabbing is failing. Let's try again, shall we?
Movie nights at home are a favorite. Recently we watched the Polar Express and Home Alone. Both evenings included a treat. While watching the Polar Express we enjoyed hot chocolate and peppermint cookies. Before watching Home Alone we enjoyed bowls of peppermint ice cream with brownies and chocolate sauce. I hope the combined flavors of peppermint and chocolate remind them of this season as they grow into adulthood.
Here's a little video:

The quality of these photos aren't the best, 
but they capture what a movie night entails. 
I spy a lot of smiles and plenty of children to cuddle. 
My favorite. 
I love to snuggle them all. 
But Lottie loves to snuggle the very most. 
She is super affectionate. 
She will sometimes stop what she's doing, 
come find me, 
and tell me she needs a hug or 
she'll asks when we can cuddle. 
It's the best. 
Reading Christmas stories around the tree and singing songs are other holiday favorites.
Except when the children disagree about which book they want to hear
or Mom has a cough that will not relent which makes singing challenging...
Even so, you make it happen. 
And sometimes Henry chooses pajamas that make you laugh. 
Enjoying the season is important but homework time and school routines can't be ignored.
Here's a peek into how that sometimes goes at our house. 
(the video isn't connecting,
I will try again later)
There's a cute toddler at our house who likes the holiday fun 
but also likes the usual things too...
like painting
and visiting farm animals. 

Lottie was sure thrilled when it was time to go to her Christmas party at dance. 
With the help of the dollar store, we made her as festive as possible. 

Eliza expanded on her homemade Nativity set
that she created using toilet paper rolls.
It's such a darling thing that we made a video tutorial. 
(feel free to laugh because I just wrote that). 

Earlier this month we went to Willard bay to see the lights. 
It's one my favorites. 
For what it's worth, you go to see the lights and ride the "train"
They have a Santa, 
but he wasn't the friendliest. 
Here's a look at our visit there:
Mama had a night out with her lady friends. 
It was a "favorite things" night. 
I loved it. 
I am so thankful for these women. 
I was fortunate to be introduced to another fabulous group of ladies
when my girls and I were invited to a gingerbread house making party. 
It was the sweetest thing and each of us had the best time. 

I feel a little silly posting so many photos of our gingerbread house;
but you never know. 
These photos might matter to my posterity a lot one day. 
To each of them I say, 
Thank you. 
You're welcome. 
(And make good choices! Great Grandma Crazy Pants loves you very much!)
Our friends the Martins invited our family over for a festive and hilarious family home evening. 
This game was particularly hysterical.
We raced to see who could make "reindeer antlers" the quickest. 
Not that this at all matters,
but the same day as the gingerbread party we also enjoyed a Christmas party with our ward
and bowling with Andrew's work that night. 
It was a busy, busy day. 

My video recommendation from all the one's shared in today's post is this one.
It features a super cute Forrest who chose to "participate"
when the primary children sang at the ward party. 
Here's a video of Lottie detailing what she wants for Christmas.
It might not be terribly exciting to watch,
but it's hilarious when she excuses herself to pass gas. 
Today's post concludes with this handsome shot of Henry. 
I have a lot of love in my heart for this boy at the moment. 
He is consistently good, kind and helpful. 
He is tender and pure. 
When I look at him I want to punch the devil in the face
and build a fortress around this child to protect him from the bad things in this world. 
He is so, so good. 
I love him and am so blessed to have him in our home. 
(p.s. I want to protect all my children. 
I'm just feeling extra anxious because Henry is turning eight this year
and is planning to be baptized. It's a big milestone. I want him to be baptized,
but I don't want him vulnerable to the adversary. 
I hope I make sense.)
Following in Daddy's footsteps
(or something like that!)

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