Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Meeting Brin

 Aunt Mer Mer and Brin came to town a few days before Christmas and so the boys were finally able to meet their newest cousin.  They were so very excited and so sweet about meeting her.  When we got to Gigi and Papack's, she was taking her morning nap.  As soon as she woke up, the boys followed Mer Mer in to get her.  I didn't grab my camera and I wish I had.  Their faces were priceless upon seeing that sweet baby girl for the first time.  They all loved her so much, but Coleman was completely taken with her.

We made these pictures as soon as she finished her bottle because with four small people, you never know when things will head south!  The boys were delighted to all get a turn holding her.  And Brin was super sweet and did so good being passed around all day.

 Uncle Brent finally got to get a turn with his sweet niece.  For everyone wondering what Brent would do with a baby girl, here's your chance to see!

 The boys all played with her during the day, but Coleman was not more than eight inches from her the whole time she was awake.  I am not even kidding.  That boy loves a baby!

They were sad to leave that afternoon, but glad we would get to see her again in just a few days!

Monday, January 28, 2013

A Meaningful Christmas

 Back in September, I came across an idea on the internet that I could not wait to do.  Two mommies from Texas have written an advent devotional called A Meaningful Christmas.  Their plan is that you form a group of 24 friends and each friend is assigned a day of the devotional and makes an ornament to represent that day's topic.  Then, you get together after Thanksgiving and have an ornament swapping party.  I asked my friend Stephanie to help me round up 22 other people to do this with us.  We had our list of friends by early November and then hosted our swapping party the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

Everyone brought a yummy treat to share.

We displayed the ornaments in the dining room.  They were beautiful!  It was so fun to see everyone else's ornaments that night.  We were amazed at the variety and creativity represented by each ornament.

 We visited while we ate and then prayed over our ornaments.

 Everyone got a box to keep their ornaments and devotion books in and then began collecting their set of ornaments.

 The book started on December 1.  Each day there was a passage or verse to read, a devotion to share, and an activity to help make the lesson more concrete for small people.  Here is a picture of Brent and the boys on the night we studied The Trinity.  He used an egg to represent three-in-one, a pretty tough concept for adults and kids alike!

After one of the boys prayed, we hung our ornament on our kitchen tree.  Here are a couple of pictures showing them up close.

It was a great tradition to add to our advent celebration.  I loved knowing that each day those 23 other families were meditating on and remembering the same part of The Story that we were.  

Christmas Fun

 We enjoyed our traditional advent chain again this year.  Here are the pictures of our fun activities from it, as well as a few other things.-

One morning we had Christmas pancakes.  The boys were surprised and excited to see Rudolph awaiting them at the breakfast table!

 I realized after this that Jonathan needs to have his photo taken first, not last, when posing with food!

I loved seeing Jonathan wearing our Sweet Repeats from Christmases past.

One night for dessert we had a hot chocolate bar.

Before church one morning.

We had "Christmas in a cup" (peppermint milkshakes from CFA) one night.  Sadly, this was just hours before Coleman had The Virus, so he will not be interested in peppermint for years to come I'm afraid.  He can't even stand to smell it yet!

The night we watched "The Grinch" we enjoyed Grinch punch.

Andrew and Coleman worked on making a few Christmas gifts for our family.

Coleman loves it when our chain tells us to do a Christmas craft.  This particular day, he wanted Brent's hat from our Sunday School party.  I got it for him and asked him why he wanted it. He said, "It's an artist's hat!"

I was so glad Ms. Christel made one of these with Jonathan's sweet feet and hands.

And, just like most everyone else on Pinterest, we made a family Christmas tree.

Preschool Parties

Our preschool parties were lots of fun again this year.  I was a party mom for Coleman's class this time, and we decided on a snowman theme.  I found lots of cute ideas on Pinterest.  The cupcakes and juice boxes were a big hit with the pre-K set!

After they ate lunch, the kids made a fun snowman craft.

And then exchanged a Christmas book.  Coleman was a little less than thrilled with his draw.

 But he was happy again in a few minutes for a picture with Ms. Stephanie!

When we arrived at Jonathan's party, he was wearing a cute snowman shirt he made.  And he was so proud to tell us it was his foot!

They had a yummy lunch and icing with a little cake for dessert.  I was glad to see that most of the boys in his class used Jonathan's preferred method of eating a cupcake - top down.

They made a cute sled craft,

and did a book exchange as well.

And here's our cutie with Ms. Christel before we left.