Wednesday, January 30, 2008

I am still here!

I haven't posted in awhile but wanted to tell the world I am still alive and doing well. Here's our latest family photo. We are having so much fun as a family. These little boys make every day an adventure! They are pretty good buddies (most of the time) and can think of something to get into on a regular basis. Can you tell they are brothers in the pic below?!?!

I just celebrated 33 years of life and must say that I feel pretty blessed. God has given me so many good things that I try to recognize and appreciate more than take for granted. For my birthday, my Mom completely suprised me by showing up on my doorstep! I couldn't believe it!!! She had been planning the suprise visit for weeks and I was absolutely stunned. She will be with us for several weeks and just 2 days into her visit I don't know if I will let her go. She is an amazing woman and grandmother to my boys!

That's all for now - I will look for more time to post again soon...

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year!

Here is a shot of my blue-eyed boys on the first day of 2008!

I trust that this year has amazing things in store for us and I am excited about the newness and the sense of renewal and fresh perspective that a new year always holds. All the best to you this year. May our great God be exalted higher in our lives and around our world than He has ever been!

I posted a bunch of stuff today - to get caught up on all of the crazy Christmas happenings! Enjoy!!! It has been a wild December with a lot on the go.

Let It Snow....But Pay $$ To Touch It?!

Call me crazy but Christmas and snow are two words that are supposed to go together. Reece had been asking us if we would receive snow on Christmas Day and it was sad to have to tell him no..... So - on the 26th we hunted down this spot in Mexico City - albeit in a mall parking lot - but nevertheless, we let our kids see some snow. Sure, it was manmade and more like ice than nice soft, fluff...and we had to pay money - but it was a memory anyway....and fun too. All of you who are enjoying a white winter, don't take it for granted! We waited in line a long time and paid nearly $10 for Reece and Chase to have an alloted 15 minutes to build a snowman on a fold-out table!

My personal highlight of the experience was to sled down the fake mountain! It was really fun and worth the money. I wanted to go again and again but the lines were quite lengthy and so I just took what I could get! Oh how I miss my childhood wintery fun!

Christmas Morning, Afternoon, and Evening!

We had a really slow going and peaceful day - due to the late, late night the boys didn't awake until about 8:30. We exchanged our gifts and played and stayed in our pajamas the whole day! It was awesome. We took a family nap in the afternoon - all 5 sleeping at the same time - now who says miracles don't occur today?!!! We also talked on the phone to all of our family so that was really fun. It was a very Merry Christmas for us, with much more profound blessings than our material gifts (but those were fun too!) I hope your day was really special also.

Noche Buena or Christmas Eve

We invited several families to eat a traditional Christmas dinner and share the evening with us on Christmas eve. It is hard to be away from family at such a family oriented time of the year, so we felt very blessed to have a house full of good friends and happy children! We ate well, celebrated with sparklers and Christmas carols, and enjoyed the annual reading of Christ's birth and Twas the Night Before Christmas. The kids stayed up really late - and us parents even later - as we prepared everything for the next morning. It was a special time for me - with all the kids tucked into bed and the Christmas lights and music, wrapping gifts and realizing how good my life is! I am thankful for Jesus - in so many ways!

Goodbye AIMers

Beth, Josh, and Michelle have been a part of our team, work and families for the past year-and-a-half. They served as apprentice missionaries through the AIM program and have become very special people to us. Their time of service has ended and we have been richly blessed by their lives and will miss their presence here. They are headed back to their homes to pursue college and future plans. All the best to you - we love you and miss you already!

Reece's Christmas Performance!

We were so proud of Reece and his performance at his school Christmas Festival. His school developed a theme and each class performed a different song representing the value of children and their growth. Although it wasn't a direct Christmas theme (more like jungle animals), it was absolutely adorable and I fought back tears a number of times...and then finally gave in when our shy little son confidently came on stage with a smile on his face - oh how he has changed!

Reece's class dressed as monkeys and they had coreographed an entire dance to the Son of Man song from the Jungle Book. At one point in the song they all turn their bums to the audience and do this little wiggle - it was so funny! He banged his drum and knew his place on the stage and most importantly, had a great time! It is a day I will never forget. We are thankful for Redlands School and all that it is teaching our boy!

Christmas Baking

There is nothing like Christmas baking to get you in the spirit of Christmas! We had our annual bake-a-thon again and enjoyed hours, and hours, and hours of preparing pumpkin bread, sugar cookies, squares, fudge and anything sweet! It is fun to pull out the recipe box and remember the good people in my life who have shared some of their favorite recipes with me. The kids, of course, had fun helping too!

I personally think it was a bit of an accomplishment to teach Josh how to roll out cookie dough!