Tuesday, November 30, 2010


This past Tuesday night we travelled down to Oregon for Thanksgiving. We had a good drive, with minimal traffic, and arrived around midnight at my mom's house. We had a great few days with my family. Thanksgiving is usually at my mom's house, and this year we gathered at my brother and sister-in-law's new house, right next door to my mom's house. It was really fun seeing so many family members (I think there were around 30-35). The food was delicious,of course. We even had home-raised turkey, which my brother and sister-in-law had raised this year. We all stuffed ourselves, and then returned to my mom's house to look at the ads and form a game-plan for Black Friday.

My niece, Sara, and I decided to take a short nap on Thursday night, and then we got up at 12:30 to begin our shopping. We went to Walmart, Target (although we didn't actually go in Target because after waiting outside for an hour I found out that all the tickets for the tv I wanted were already gone), Shopko, Fred Meyer, Kmart, and JC Penney. Sara and I went to Walmart and Target, then met some of our family at Shopko, and later we met with the rest of the family for breakfast, before doing the rest of our shopping. Jared and I got almost all our Christmas shopping done, and all of our shopping done for Ellie's birthday. And we found some awesome deals! I don't usually like crowds very much, but I love Black Friday shopping! It's one of my favorite days of the year!

We rested on Friday afternoon, and enjoyed the rest of our weekend, before driving back home on Sunday. It was a great weekend, and already I miss my family!

The kids love spending time with their Uncle Scott (who is famous in our family for his delicious pancakes that Ellie always looks forward to)!

We got to see my sweet great-nephew, baby Connor. The kids just LOVE him (so do I). He is one of the sweetest babies ever:)

I think I will just end by listing some of the things that I'm so very thankful for this year:
  • My wonderful husband, who I fall more in love with every day.
  • My two sweet kids, who are blessings from the Lord.
  • Our new home.
  • My extended family, on both sides.
  • That I can stay at home with my kids, and homeschool Ellie this year.
  • Good friends, both old and new.
  • My wonderful Jesus, who came to earth as a baby and died on a cross so that I could one day live forever with Him in heaven.
  • Our car, that (so far) runs so well and gets us where we need to be.
  • Our new laptop.
  • Jared's new job.
  • SO much more!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Beautiful weather! And more...

Well, I am a week late in writing this. Our computer has been on the fritz, and it officially dead. However, I now type from our brand new laptop:) I am thrilled that we were able to get it, and we love it!

Our last couple weeks have been pretty busy. I had a weekend all to myself, when my hubby went to a boardgame retreat and took our kids to their grandparents' house. I did a lot of painting, and then spend some time just relaxing. It was wonderful! I missed my family like crazy by the end of the weekend, but it was so nice to have that break. I have the world's greatest husband, to think of the idea and then drive the kids over the mountains and back!

The next weekend my family from Oregon drove up to visit us and see our new house. It was so much fun, and I was wishing they could have stayed a lot longer!

I've been making Christmas gifts, and preparing our Christmas card and letter. And with homeschooling and just daily life, things have been busy!

In the past couple of weeks our weather has changed from a beautiful fall, with brightly colored leaved everywhere, to a gorgeous winter, with snow covering everything! Of course, we know that the snow won't last long here on the Western side of Washington, but we're enjoying it while we can:)

And tonight we leave for Oregon, to celebrate Thanksgiving with family. We have so much to be thankful for!

Ellie and Parker in the beautiful leaves in our yard.

Our first snow in our new home:)

The kids love the snow!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Ellie has recently started taking a ballet class. She has always loved to dance (and sing, and act, and anything that involves entertaining). We have been wanting to put her in a dance class, but really didn't feel like we could afford it at this point. And now one of my friends is teaching a ballet class in her home, free of charge! The little girls are all so cute, dressed up in their little leotards and tutus! They're learning the ballet steps and practicing for a recital, and are even going to dance at a nursing home. Ellie has only been to one class so far (this morning will be her second), but she LOVES it! I am so thankful that she is able to do this, and that God has blessed us in this way!

Ellie has so much fun dancing, and ballet class is a great way for her to meet some new friends!

Ellie's all smiles as she gets ready for ballet class in the morning!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A time to shine!

We celebrate Halloween in our family. I know that this holiday can be a little controversial, but we have always chosen to celebrate it. Now, we don't ever celebrate in scary ghost, witch, or skeleton ways. And we don't teach our children that this is an "evil" holiday (we don't believe it is, unless it's celebrated that way). But we use even this holiday as a way to teach our children about the God who loves them. For the past two weeks of preschool, Ellie has been learning about why being a Christian is like being a pumpkin. We have a cute little poem that we read each day at the end of school: "Being a Christian is like being a pumpkin. God picks you from the patch, brings you in, and washed all the dirt off of you. Then He cuts off the top and scoops out all the yucky stuff. He removes the seeds of doubt, hate, and greed, carves you a new smiling face, and puts His light inside of you to shine for all the world to see." We talk about what each part of this poem means, and how God is always changing us and making us more like Him. It has been a great tool.
Fun at the pumpkin patch!

Ellie and Parker each made their own homemade pumpkins during preschool.

Of course some of our celebration is just for fun! Our church puts on a Trunk or Treat party, and we had a lot of fun going around the parking lot and getting candy from each of the cleverly decorated cars. Parker dressed up as a pumpkin and Ellie was a bride. They were both super cute (of course)! And they now have enough candy to last them a LONG time:)

Cute little pumpkin, Parker Paul!
The beautiful bride, Ellie!
Halloween can be a time to shine in dark places. As Christians, I believe that we are called to do just that:)