Friday, December 31, 2010

A Year Full of Blessings

As 2010 comes to an end, I am reminded of what a wonderful year this has been. It has been a year full of changes. And a year that I am so thankful for. I am thankful for the good health of my family and myself. I am thankful for the provisions and mercy of a loving God. I am thankful for extended family, for time spent and memories made. I am thankful for wonderful friends, both old and new. I am thankful for a loving church family. I am thankful for good neighbors. I am thankful for Jared's job. I am thankful for our house. I am thankful for time with my family. I am thankful that for another year that I was able to stay home and raise my children. I am thankful for the most amazing husband, who I can see becoming more like Christ with each passing year. I am thankful for two beautiful children, who challenge me and teach me, who make me laugh and sometimes make me cry, who bring so much joy to my life. Wow! I don't know what 2011 has in store, but I am excited to see the blessings to come. I hope you have had a wonderful year, and know that you are one of the blessings in my life!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My Little Lamb!

This past Sunday Ellie was in the Christmas program at church. She, with all the other preschoolers, was an animal in Bethlehem. She was a sheep, and was so cute! When she came into the sanctuary and saw Jared and me, she ran up to us and gave us a big hug. Then she ran up on stage. She sang and baa-ed, and even danced around the stage (not in the script, but she's GREAT at improv)! At first she seemed a little shy and nervous, but once she was up there for a few minutes I think she learned to really enjoy the spotlight! It was so much fun to watch her, and Jared and I were so proud of her!

Parker and Ellie, all dressed up for Christmas Sunday

Ellie is the little blue one with sheep ears!

This was her face when she saw us in the sanctuary! Such excitement!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The reason!

Christmas is my favorite holiday! I love the fun traditions that our family holds dear. I love baking cookies, making homemade candy, making crafts, giving gifts, eating yummy food, decorating our house, making gingerbread houses with the kids, and so much more. But the thing I love the most is remembering why we celebrate this day. And teaching that to my kids. I love reading them stories of Christ's birth, and teaching them why Jesus was born - to save us from our sins so that one day we can be with Him in Heaven. I love teaching them Bible verses about the birth of our Savior. I love quizzing them each day and seeing just how much they know about Christ, and then letting them open their advent door for the day. I love teaching them that although we are blessed with so many great gifts, our most wonderful gift is Jesus. I love that they have such giving hearts, and love to give gifts and make things for people. I love how thankful my kids are for all their many gifts and that they enjoy thanking God for all He's done for us and given us. I have so many wonderful memories of Christmases past, and I know that my children are building memories now that will stay with them for the rest of their lives. And the biggest thing I want them to remember is how very much their Savior loves them, that He would send His only son down to earth as a baby, to grow and then die on the cross as the sacrifice for a world of sin. And THAT'S a reason to celebrate this season!

The kids with our Christmas tree

The kids had a great time making gingerbread houses!

This was Parker's first year making one, and of course he ate LOTS of the candy!

The finished product!

"Yay, Mom! I did it!"

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Wow! She's 4 years old!

This past week we celebrated Ellie's 4th birthday. On Wednesday (her actual birthday) we went to Olive Garden for dinner (Ellie's favorite restaurant). Then we had her birthday party on Sunday. Ellie's really into Hello Kitty right now, and that's the theme she wanted for her party. It was a lot of fun! It was our first birthday party in our new house. I made and decorated her cake on Saturday. Then we decorated the house. It turned out really cute! At her party the kids made Hello Kitty Christmas ornaments, ate cake and ice cream, opened goody bags, did a pinata, and then Ellie opened her presents. She was super blessed with great friends and lots of fun gifts!

We've had a fun and busy past few days, and I plan on writing all about them in the next couple days. For now, I'm going to go snuggle with my handsome hubby and watch a movie!

Ellie and her good friend, Ciara.