Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Gingerbread houses

Dallin has been asking me about every day for the past week if we could decorate gingerbread houses.
"But you did a really nice one at school already." I said, and gestured toward his graham cracker/milk carton creation.
Dallin wasn't satisfied, and kept at me.
I finally got into gear and made gingerbread today, and rustled up some things to decorate with.  The boys loved this activity, and got really creative!  (Adam let me help him a little.)  I think their houses came out great.


Monday, December 13, 2010

Merry Christmas 2010

This year:

Our nephew Austin lived with us for a few months before tying the knot with his sweetheart.
We took the kids to Disneyland for the first time.
Brandt wore a Doc band for three months.  He also reached lots of milestones like walking, his first word, "bye," and attending his first nursery class.
We attended our first Mountain Man Rendezvous.
Adam learned to swim and started preschool.
Caleb was baptized, started cub scouts, played flag-football, and ran a 5k.
 Dallin played machine-pitch baseball, started Kindergarten, and ran in his first 1-mile fun run.
Mitch built three loft beds, took Caleb on a father/son hike in the Uinta mountains with his family, coached flag football, and ran a 1/2 marathon.
Anna tagged along with most of the above and... er... did lots of fascinating stuff she can't recall right now.

It was a good year, full of blessings.  And above all blessings, thanks be to God for the gift of his Son.

Christmas Fortune Teller

I designed this Christmas fortune teller to go along with the table decorations at our church Christmas party. 

 The kids, and some of the adults, had fun playing around with them.  I've attached it here if anybody wants it.  (If you'd rather have it in pdf, let me know).  Merry Christmas!

Logic Vs. Traditional Christmas Cards

Retrieving the mail is a chore Mitch takes care of.  But when the Christmas cards begin to appear I actually start to look forward to the mail.  I love the family photos, the festive cards and the well wishes.  I tape them on the wall so I can look at them throughout the season. 

But... is the tradition of sending holiday cards dying out?  People keep in touch in so many different ways.  There are tons of funny, touching You Tube videos, ecards, digital picture frames and other options to send and display holiday greetings.  Are the traditional cards necessary anymore?  Why spend the money on cards, photos, and stamps, right?  Besides, it can hardly be considered the "green" thing to do.  Think of all the trees sacrificed!

No, Christmas cards are not necessary.  Yes, they can be expensive.  No, they're not green.  Logic is all against them.  But, dang it, I love them anyway!  I love to open them with my hands, read the messages inside and hang them on my wall.  And I hope they don't go away anytime soon.

That said, logic rules the day around here and we will be sending out an e-greeting this year.  I'm just a little bit sad about that.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Newport Beach 2010

We spent last week in Newport Beach.  We spent a couple of days at Legoland, a couple of days at the beach, and a couple of days just hanging out at the resort.  Ahhhh.  Apart from the fact that most of us were sick, it was simply lovely.  It was great to have my brother Matthew and his cute family spend a few days with us too.

Thanksgiving 2010

I got to spend Thanksgiving with these wonderful people.  Good food, games, movies, a lovely hike.  I loved every minute of it. 

Run! Run!

 Mitch ran his first half-marathon last month!  I am so proud of him for accomplishing this goal!   Brandt is proud too.  I ran the 5k and felt good about my time.

A week or two later Dallin participated in his first 1-mile fun run.  He really ran hard.  Caleb also showed great effort in the 5k and they both finished with good times.  It was neat that Grandpa Tom got to be involved too.

Photography Workshop

My sweet husband gifted me a one-day photography workshop for my birthday.  It was amazing.


And I finally know what aperture, shutter speed, and ISO mean.  I love the thought of improving my photos.  Now I just have to find time to practice my newly-learned techniques.


This is a common sight around my house. 

Can you see Brand't little legs in the background?  When he gets big enough, I'm sure he'll jump in too.  Just nobody poke anyone's eye out, okay?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Recent Quotes

Disappointed, we piled back into the van after discovering the tennis courts were already in use.  Caleb said, "We just came here for nothing."
Mitch said, "It's not like you guys were doing anything.  You were watching TV. "
Caleb replied, "We were wasting our time in a better way."

A girl passed by on the sidewalk outside the van.  Dallin gasped.  "It's a girl!"
He knocked on the window and the girl turned at the sound.
"She likes me," Dallin said.

"Ooo, Christmas trees for sale!" I said as we passed a brightly-lit lot on the corner.
"Outstanding!" Adam declared.  "We can get one of those for Christmas!"

"I... [insert the word 'love' here]... cookie!"

Friday, November 12, 2010

Fall Sports

We've been pretty busy with sports this fall.  Dallin played machine-pitch baseball and Caleb played flag football.  Between practices and games for these two, we had sports six nights of the week!  Not only that, but Mitch was the coach for Caleb's team.  Here are a few pictures.  The boys have had a lot of fun and learned some new skills.  Dallin was awarded the Most Improved Player award.  Caleb will play in tournament game tomorrow.  As for Mitch, I think he enjoyed his coaching experience and spending that extra time with Caleb.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cute Baby Update

Okay, so he's not really a baby anymore.  Anyway, Brandt has been growing and changing and I have some adorable pictures of him I want to share.

He's starting to talk more, adding some new words to his vocabulary.  "Na" means snack, "dees" means this and usually he's pointing to what he wants.  "Ba" means bath, "wa" means watch a show, "sh" means shoe, and so on.  He loves peek-a-boo, tickles, and gives sweet kisses.  He loves to say,  "I (insert the word 'love' here) Da Da!" and that just melts Mitch.  My favorite thing he says is an enthusiastic, "Yay!" whenever he's excited.  I love that.  Brandt's brothers love him.  They all try to help him, like to play with him, and ask him for hugs.  He's such a joy.  And so handsome.  Wouldn't you agree?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Halloween 2010

Some favorite pictures from this year's Halloween.

The kids went trick-or-treating at Mitch's work.  I think Adam rocked Batman in this one.

Brandt soon figured out that this whole thing was about getting candy.  He was pretty tickled about that.

These black cat cookies have almost become an annual tradition.

The family at the church trunk-or-treat party.

Carving jack-o-lanterns.

Caleb and Dallin carved their own.


Dallin picked this costume to wear early in the season.  He wanted it because it was a "tricky" one, and he loved hearing compliments about the costume everywhere!
Caleb couldn't wear his ghost costume to the party because he couldn't have his face covered.  So he went as a gnome like Dallin.

Halloween dinner: Chicken Noodle Spook with Salty Bones and Eyeballs.

It was a happy Halloween

Big Thoughts

Adam: When I'm eighteen I'll be big.
Me: Yes you will.
Adam: ...I'll be bigger than a whale!
Me: (to myself) I hope not.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Quote of the Day

We were listening to music and Adam was singing along.  Annoyed, Dallin called out, "Stop singing!  It sounds better when only they're singing."

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Adam's 4th Birthday Party

Bugs!  This one was all about creepy-crawly critters.

I tweaked an idea from a  familyfun Valentine's Day card for the invitations:

The kids helped me decorate with tissue paper "grass", plastic bugs from our collection, simple napkin butterflies, and balloon bugs.

At the front door:

We played fun games like this carry-the-bug relay (while listening to some cool bug tunes),

We played pin the spot on the ladybug (the spots are Oreo halves).

Brandt thought that one was a lot of fun.

We rolled "tumble bugs" down a ramp.

Hunted for plastic bugs in our front yard,

And, most exciting of all, swatted "bubble bugs!"

Here's a shot of the cake:

I'm pretty sure Adam and all his little friends had lots of fun.  Happy birthday, Adam.  I love you.