Monday, December 31, 2012
If I had known some of the things that my family and I would face in 2012, I would have run away from it. My grandfather passed, our beloved dog Cosby died, Eva had some not so fun illnesses, we had to move from the apartment we loved, there was a long period where we didn't know what Ryan's job would be or where we would live, I had to pack us up while Ryan was gone away for a week, and the transition from churches has left us missing people we care about. None of those things would have been of my choosing. I would have been fearful if I had known ahead of time that we would face those challenges. Thankfully our God who is not only able, but WISE and GRACIOUS, didn't let me know what was in store. And instead of spending the year being afraid of what might hit next I was able to enjoy each of the amazing BLESSINGS He had planned for me.
Blessings like...seeing my baby learn to sit, crawl, walk, eat, and talk!!!....moving to our new home that has so much more space and is in the perfect location and I honestly love way more than our old apartment......going on our first vacation as a family of 3...being a stay at home mama...celebrating our 4th wedding anniversary at the spot where Ryan proposed....SEEING how trustworthy and praise worthy God really is!!!!...seeing my cousin baptized....celebrating a friend's wedding...spending lots of time with our families....enjoying lots and lots of good meals around our dining room table...being surrounded by extremely generous friends and family....making new friends at our new church....getting to know and love more Middle School and High School students....finishing reading through the entire Bible!!!!....enjoying a beautiful white Christmas with my family....going on sweet dates with my husband....having a warm home to sleep in on cold nights....my list could go on and on! I am thankful for where our lives were led in 2012 and looking forward to 2013!
Happy New Year!
Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Christmas Eve afternoon we drove back home for our church service. Our plan was to go out for dinner at Cheesecake Factory after service, but by the time we got done visiting it was already later, and then we found out they had a 30 minute wait, which we didn't think would mix well with an already worn out baby girl. So we decided to pick up some Chicken Express and have a picnic by the Christmas tree instead. New tradition? I think so.
My family came over for lunch Christmas Day to enjoy good Mexican food, more presents, and lots of snow! Above: Mamy and Eva with her new apron; Christmas dinner table: Mamy opening her new diamond necklace from my Dad (SURPRISE!!!!); Four generations of women; My dad and grandpa with Eva.
The of course we bundled up and took the munchkin out to play in the snow! She LOVED it! We got enough snow to have plenty to stomp around in while it was still blowing in hard. That baby looks pretty cute bundled up in her snow gear!
It was a really awesome Christmas. I love Christmas even more now that I can share it with my husband and daughter. I can understand why our parents love to bless us with gifts so much because it was really fun to see Eva opening all of her presents. We've had a blast playing with all the new toys and our playroom is now officially sponsored by Fisher Price! Just kidding. Now we'll be enjoying having Ryan at home a bit more this week and staying snuggled up warm inside.
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Only 3 days until Christmas! Hooray! And our Christmas celebrating really starts this Sunday! I wanted to quickly share a few more things we've been doing in our 25 days of Christmas countdown, starting with the painting above. I definitely did not do this with Eva, but I did create it myself! I bought a set of canvases from Hobby Lobby and painted them with chalkboard paint so I could use chalk to switch out the quotes or verses. This verse from Isaiah was my creation for Christmas time.
Getting ready for our big Christmas weekend!
Sunday, December 16, 2012
PS This is one of my favorite photos of us from over 10 years ago at an awesome Mavs playoff game. It was taken using an actual film camera.
Saturday, December 15, 2012
In case you aren't aware there are only 10 days until Christmas!!!! Woo-hoo! Are you as excited as I am????? I hope so!
Before the Christmas season began I created an advent type calendar using PicMonkey. This type of list is called subway art (I don't know why). It took a while to design but I was able to come up with 25 fun activities, one for each day of December leading up to Christmas morning.
I used the same three frames from my Thanksgiving wall of thankfulness and had 3 separate lists that had a total of 25 activities. I really like how this looks in the playroom. We've been pretty good about doing an activity each day and I like having them in this type of list because I can be flexible for what we do each day. A couple of days we've done more than one so I think I'll be short the week before Christmas but I figure we can still have fun. And I put going caroling on there twice without realizing it. Oops. I guess we really better go caroling next week.
We stuck with our small tree again this year. Our big tree that used to be my grandma's is in storage at my parents and we decided that the small tree would be better with Eva. Honestly, I really wish that we'd gone with the big one, but it's okay, I can use the big one next year. The main reason we went with the small tree was so that it would be safer if Eva pulled it over....which she has....twice. Oh, toddlers.
You never know what can end up in your tree! I found this stuffed animal tucked into the back the other day. We're trying to teach her that she can gently touch the ornaments but she can't take them off or pull on them. Our plan has mostly worked :) I've only had to do emergency repair surgery on one ornament that I didn't even realize was breakable.
One of our favorite holiday traditions is going to Denton for Wassail Fest. We got to see lots of old friends while we were there and Eva had fun at the petting zoo.
Last week Ryan and I hosted our small group's Christmas party. Umm, it was pretty awesome!!! Probably because we have the best small group ever. Literally. That's our group's official name.
We played several minute to win it games (from the popular game show). From top left going clockwise: 1. Wearing pantyhose with a tennis ball in the toe on your head to knock down water bottles (I won!!!) 2. Using chopsticks to race with fruit loops. 3. Cup stacking (the boys cheated). 4. Using a barbeque skewer to stack nuts (as in nuts and bolts).
Another advent activity was to take a walk as a family to go look at Christmas lights. I figured that she wouldn't have much driving around in the car to look at lights because her view would be limited from her car seat. Also Trophy Club has awesome lights so it was easy to walk around to find really decked out homes.
The other night for our activity we all cuddled in our jammies and watched the classic Rudolph movie. The movie has Santa Clause in it, of course. She really likes cartoon Santas.....
Real Santa? Not so much. I promise that we only sat her on his lap for a milisecond to take this photo. She was really interested and happy to see him up until the moment we sat her down. So sad, yet so funny at the same time. Everybody needs a classic toddler meets Santa photo like this, right? Despite what this photo may suggest, she still gets excited and says, "Ho-ho-ho" every time she sees a picture of Santa on TV or a book. So I don't think we scared her too much.
Ah! I'm having so much fun doing Christmas things with my family!!!! I've been so intentional to keep things light and fun and to remember that it's more about spending sweet time together than having a perfect moment so I don't get stressed about things. Because the holidays should be about LOVE and JOY and PEACE!!! Can't wait to share more activities this week!
Friday, December 14, 2012
More blogging catch up! We had a blessed Thanksgiving with our families. Starting with the day before when we headed to Ryan's parents house to spend the night.
Thanksgiving Day we enjoyed lunch and family time over at Ryan's aunt's house. The weather was gorgeous so the cousins got to run around and play outside. I love it every time these beautiful girls are all together.
Thursday night we returned home and got our house ready to host a big meal for my family the next day. My family decided a few years ago to make Friday our official Thanksgiving gathering so there are less conflicts.
I made my Grammie's traditional zucchini squares. I still miss her so much around the holidays and making these is a sweet way to honor our memory of her. When we stepped into her home, she would always have a warm plate of zucchini squares to offer.
Thursday, December 13, 2012
Ah! Time to play some blogging catch up now that I can get photos to post. Let's roll back time a bit to the weekend before my birthday....