Friday, January 27, 2012

Wrapping Up

So here is the last Christmas post for this year. Just a few pictures and the things I want to remember about Christmas 2011.

Coleman made this cute mouse footprint for our gift this year. It says, "Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse."

Here are the boys helping Brent try out his back-scratch shirt Coleman made.

Jonathan loved reading the Christmas journal with MerMer. He pointed out everyone in the pictures and named them over and over and over and over and over. . .

Here we are in our matching pjs. Something tells me this is probably the last year this will happen.

Things I don't want to forget about the season:

*Brent and I joined the church choir this fall. To help prepare for the Christmas music, our director gave us a CD of the songs. I kept it on almost constantly in the car with the boys. They all three learned almost all the words to every song. Andrew and Coleman each had songs where they sang the solo part and Jonathan chimed in very loudly on the parts he knew. Right before the first song began, Jonathan would encourage everyone to, "Get ready! E'body! Sing out!"

*The silly, hysterical dance that Coleman and Jonathan came up with for "Blue Christmas." They did it every single time the song came on.

*How sweet the bigger boys were when we made our Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes.

*How nice it was to have a pre-lit tree. We retired our tree of 14 years this year. I was a little sad to leave it downstairs, but oh how marvelous to not do the lights.

*Hearing Jon Jon sing, "Jingle Balls" at the top of his lungs.

*Hearing Andrew sing "The 12 Days of Christmas," always ending with the partridge in the pan-tree.

*And these little fellas:

Friday, January 13, 2012

Christmas Day 2011

Christmas morning Brent and I got up early early and got ready before the boys woke up. Actually, we were almost ready before they got up. I heard Andrew come out of his room and head for the bathroom around 6:30. I tiptoed over there to be sure he didn't head for the living room. I persuaded him to go back to bed, and then I hurried around the house to get Brent to hurry up. (This is sounding and awful lot like last year, isn't it?)

Brent finished getting ready and then we waited in the kitchen for the boys to get up. Around 7:30 we couldn't stand it any longer and so Brent went in and woke up Andrew and Coleman and I woke up Jonathan. I carried Jonathan into the living room, so we don't have pictures of that. (We do have video which will be up hopefully soon.)

Andrew and Coleman had asked Santa for Leapster Explorers and some surprises. As soon as they walked into the room, they grabbed their Leapsters and started playing. Jonathan wanted to sit and drink his milk like usual while he woke up. So it was a very quiet start to Christmas morning. I am glad we videoed it because I know folks who know us will have a hard time believing how calm it was. Here are the big boys playing with their games.

Jonathan got a little tikes train set. Once he finished his milk, he was ready to get down and see what Santa brought him.

Then we opened our stockings. The boys were super excited about their tic tacs!

Santa brought me a clicker for the neighborhood gate!

Everyone got a granny smith apple again this year. And we all got Disney t-shirts! Have you noticed that everyone has matching pajamas this year?

After we saw what Santa brought, we ate our breakfast. We had breakfast casserole, cinnamon rolls, and pink grapefruit. It was yummy!

Then we opened our family gifts to each other. Here are Andrew and Coleman opening the gifts they chose for each other.

The big boys got a Batcave from Mommy and Daddy.

Jonathan got a little tikes gas pump from Mommy and Daddy.

He loved the bristle blocks Santa brought him!

This year Andrew and Coleman helped with their gifts for Brent. Coleman painted Brent a backscratch shirt. Brent can wear the shirt and Coleman drives a hot wheels car over the road, scratching his back at the same time.

I asked Andrew what he would like to give Brent and he thought for a minute and then said, "A new shoe shine thingy." So that's what he got. He also gave Brent a picture frame with a photo of them at the GT game we went to this fall.

I found a print for his office and framed it. It was drawn by the artist who did the covers of the football programs while he was at Tech.

And this picture was made later in the day, but here he is with his new video camera. He actually opened it on Christmas Eve so he could use it on Christmas morning.

Brent has always acted like he has a hard time coming up with ideas for my gifts. After this year, no one is buying that song and dance any more! I got a cookie jar,

a waffle iron,

and some help with the house! And yes, those are tears in my eyes. The paper says, "We got you someone to clean up our messes twice monthly." You could accurately say I was shocked.

After we opened our gifts, we got dressed and ready for church. I found this when I finished getting ready.

Church was so sweet, and I am so glad we went. We came home, ate lunch, and the boys laid down for a bit. Then Gigi, Papack, Aunt Mer Mer and Uncle Roger arrived! We opened gifts with them and then had a yummy supper.
It was just about as perfect as a day can be.

Christmas Eve

We started off Christmas Eve with a visit to Cracker Barrel. Coleman had been asking for weeks to go to Cracker Barrel, so he especially was very excited!

Then it was off to Gigi and Papack's for the day. We celebrated Christmas with Uncle Steve, Aunt Lola, and the Chandler family. Andrew and Coleman had a great time playing with their cousins Will and Chris. I only got a few pictures during the day, but we had a great time.

We got home in time for supper and baths as usual. The boys opened their new Christmas pajamas and we made a quick picture before Jonathan went to bed. We're getting better at the whole "everyone look at the camera at the same time and smile" thing.

The bigger boys checked the radar to locate Santa, and found that he was in Iceland.

They quickly set out his cookies and milk.

Reindeer food went on the doorstep, and then it was off to bed.

Archer Christmas 2011

The Saturday before Christmas, we had our annual Archer Christmas. This year, the cousins from Tennessee were able to come too. Nana and Pop-O started things off with a nativity production involving all the cousins. The four oldest participated well, Nolan went off to play, and you can see Jonathan is having a hoe-down throw down in the floor in front of Mary.

We ate our traditional bar-b-que lunch and had our choice of many desserts. This time I finally got some people pictures! Here are my favorite MIL and SIL.

Jonathan and Nolan had a big time with the pirate ship and accessories.

The cousins ready for lunch.

When the grown-ups finally finished eating, we opened gifts. Someone was super duper excited!