Thursday, December 24, 2009

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Merry Christmas!


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Tis the Season!

I feel like I have been going nonstop the last couple and everyone else, I'm sure. We have been having lots of fun getting ready for Christmas--running errands, mailing packages, baking, decorating, making gifts...etc. etc. The computer has been calling my name: Ji-ill...come sit down and blog...

Let's start this blog off with an open house, of sorts. Mom asked me where I put various decorations, so I took some pictures. Here's our pretty tree, in the front room. I remember that when I was growing up we would keep the Christmas tree lights off all day, and turn them on at night when it got dark. Of course, that makes sense to do. But, I can't stand to walk through our living room and see the tree looking dark and lonely. I keep them on almost all day. Plus, the kids are here all day, and it starts getting dark here at about 4:30! And, I love the way the tree smells, with those lights warming it up. (To complete the picture, imagine Elvis Presley singing Silver Bells in the background... Every time Trevor notices that the Christmas music has stopped, he finds that song, and starts it up again. He said he likes the man's voice. I tried to tell him about Elvis, and I made it pretty interesting, if I do say so myself, and Trevor just nodded his head and said "okay". He's funny like that.)
Here's the stockings and mantle. Mom made all the stockings for us, and we love them.
Here's a closer shot of the pictures on the mantle. They are silly ones of the boys last year, standing on their heads on Mom and Dad's couch. I like how playful they are.
Here's a not-great-picture of our Willow Tree Nativity set...I put it our on top of the piano.
Mom wanted to know where the other furniture went that used to be in front of the front window...It's all in the guest room...which is, once again, piled high with stuff. How does that happen??? Sorry, no pictures of that... :)

On to other Christmas happenings...

Samuel had his Christmas program last week. He did a great job. Here's the pre-performance photo:On occasion, our boys will sing in the program, and on occasion, they will not. On some occasions they will hide behind the bleachers. Thankfully, on this occasion, we had a singer. It was fun for us to watch Samuel singing and doing all the actions. We were very proud of him!
Here's our post-performance photo, back in the classroom, where he gave us little Christmas presents that he had made in class. Awww...
A couple days ago, we had some friends over (which is so rare that it warrants blogging) and I lined them up for a photo. Caleb is Trevor's age, and Seth is Samuel's...but, since those 2 boys have had their birthdays already, the boys were ages 8, 7, 6, 5, and 4. Crazy fun. We made crafts, and ate pizza, and watched movies, and they ran around wild. :) It was Caleb and Seth's last day in Dothan before moving to Atlanta...we will miss them!
You can pray for a friend for Samuel at school...Seth was his best buddy, and the only boy he played with at "outside time".
Last, but not least, some pictures from just this morning. Trev started up a little ear infection last night, which kept us home for the morning. Often, when that happens on a Sunday, we will have church at home. Tim got out his guitar, and we sang Christmas songs. That is, Tim and I sang Christmas songs...the boys do not sing with us. But, they did get out some drums and a tambourine and made some happy racket along with us. That was fun. After that, I got out Grandpa's old piano, and the kids really had fun playing along with the programed Christmas music.
I hope your Christmas is off to a special start, too!

fa la la la la, la la la la!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

We Got Mail

A package came in the mail yesterday! Grandma knows what it was...I had a little technical difficulty during filming, and missed the first time they said
Legos To Hang On The Christmas Tree!!!!
but I did get some other really sweet stuff...

Monday, November 30, 2009

Our Christmas Tree

We used to drive out to a local tree farm. However, the local tree farms we have visited seem to trim the trees [and sometimes even spray paint them] until they look like a field of upside down, green ice cream cones). So, this year we decided to zip over to Lowe's. The boys were very opinionated about which tree they wanted, and we actually made the purchase in record time. They enjoyed watching the tree get trimmed and wrapped...
In the past, they boys would put nearly all their decorations on one or two branches, down low, at the front of the tree...but this year they did a good job of spreading them out. It's fun to see them gain awareness.

Though...they were still all low on the tree...maybe they were just leaving me room for my ornaments?

They enjoyed looking at all their old decorations. Here's one that Great Grandma gave Trevor. Samuel has become interested in noticing which ornaments are cross-stitched.

After the tree was done, a package came to the door...

It was Christmas crafts from Grandma. I set the boys up at their desks, and then Tim and I enjoyed some peace and quiet while they worked away.

In keeping with their theme of being highly opinionated, the boys rallied Tim to put up some lights outside. Here they are helping replace the MANY burned out bulbs...they each have a baggie of extra bulbs they are sorting through.

Of course, after a fun day, a fun dinner is a must. Tim and I whipped up several plates of finger food--sausage & cheese balls, homemade corn chips with guacamole and nacho dip, "tortilla bites" (a new invention of Tim's), and popcorn shrimp. The kids drank "Celebration Juice" (sparkling grape juice) out of small stemware cups, and we re-watched Ice Age 3. That was fun.

I hope you are enjoying preparing for the advent season also! Oh Come, Oh Come Emmanuel!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Well, we're off to the feast, with a pumpkin pie and 3 little Indians! Here's a couple little pictures to share the Thanksgiving Joy.

T, W, and S enjoying their snack together in the warm afternoon sun...

And Samuel, garbed in his Pilgrim gear for his Thanksgiving performance. (He doesn't look exactly thrilled...but who would be, who has to dress like a Pilgrim when he could have been an Indian?)
A 4-year-old's rendition of "Mr. Turkey"
(Samuel is in the center of the screen--I's hard to tell.)
Mr. Turkey, Mr. Turkey
Big and Fat, Big and Fat
I am going to eat you! I am going to eat you!
Just like that (clap) Just like that (clap)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I Love Fall!

Fall is such a balm after a sweltering Alabama summer. I was sooo ready for it too. We have done a few very fall-ish things this week.

1) Raking.

William is always wanting to earn money, so he was excited when I went out and bought a new rake that was a size he could handle. I got one for Samuel too, that was really small. Thankfully Trevor can manage the big one that Tim keeps in the shed. They all went to work in the front yard. Maybe I need to show them the money to encourage them to finish the job? So far, I still have a big pile of leaves in the yard.

2) Harvesting.

Some of our sweet friends that live out in the country, Jorge and Susan, invited several families to do a "fellowship garden" this fall. We actually planted it a while back, at the end of summer, and it is now ready to begin harvesting. So, we headed out yesterday to harvest, and also to thin some of the plants. The weather was beautiful, the plants were beautiful, and we had a great time.

Here's what the kids did while we worked...

My legs are sore today from getting up and down and up and down, picking beans, weeding carrots and pulling radishes. I guess gardening is good for the body in more than one way!

These babies turned into both dilly beans, and lunch!

We only brought home a couple of these...
And these puppies were huge!!!! Some of the radishes were as big as a baseball! No one was sure what to do with them. Someone did have the idea to try to microwave one, since it really looked like a potato. She nuked it until it was soft, just like a baked potato, and we tasted it. It was actually pretty good! I still didn't take any home. :)

This made it into our salad today, and Trevor has been thrilled about eating lunch-meat sandwiches with this tender, sweet lettuce.
The sugar snap pea plants were so pretty! We brought home a couple handfuls of peas for salads. Yum!
After gardening, and lunch, we headed out to gather eggs from the "chicken condo".

Here's Maggie getting one of the eggs.
The parents enjoyed watching the offspring run around...
Can you tell what they are doing?
Chasing sheep!! We are definitely not raising shepherds here...
3) Football.

I came out to the living room just a little bit ago, and here they all were:They were doing something they learned to do at Grandmother's house while Tim and I were in Mexico...They were doing it very quietly...
What could they be doing??

Watching this:Aahhh...I've made it. Not only will they (the boys) sit and watch videos, now they will watch football too!! That's what they are doing while I blog. It's great. Peace and quiet for me. Peace and (relative) quiet for them. AND, no one is making a mess!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

My Peter Pan

This is Scott M. Fischer's Peter Pan
(from the book Peter Pan in Scarlet)
This is MY Peter Pan
Whenever Trevor's hair looks like this, which it does REGULARLY, I like to call him Peter Pan. He is every bit as squirrley and crazy as the "real" Peter Pan, but he's all mine, and he knows what kisses are. His patchy grin makes me smile--he's still so unaware of how he looks, and his snaggle-teeth are precious to me.

A while back Trevor noticed this little Lego set in a Lego catalog. He was so excited about it. I have no idea why. He wanted it for his birthday, which is still months away. Then, just the other day, while shopping for a gift in the toy dept in Wal-Mart, Trevor came rushing up to me, face aglow, and told me that he had found THE set. The BBQ set! His pure joy was so precious, how could I resist??

So, now we have a BBQ stand.

With a set this small...what's a boy to do to stretch the fun out as far as possible??

If the boy is Trevor, he could DRAW the set!
Is that hilarious, or what????
What is this child going to turn our to be?? He is so mathematical. Here he's got the top view, and then each of the side views, even complete with half an "M" and half a "K" on the correct bottles in the side views. CRAZY! Do other 7-year-olds do this??

In other news:

Last Sunday we ventured out to the National Peanut Festival Fairgrounds for the annual fair. Our Top Priority: Ferris Wheel.

We were going to ride this Ferris Wheel...until a worker climbed up to do some "minor" repairs to make sure it didn't break down.

We moved on to this Ferris Wheel:

Here's a picture I took of the kids:
Here's a picture the kids took of me: