Saturday, December 31, 2011

Now theres 3 in the bed...

Well it's official. The crib has been taken down. Emmett's room has been converted into the playroom/craftroom/sewing room/study room.
Emmett now sleeps with the big kids.
The transition was smooth as butter and ALL the kids are loving having 3 in the bed.
Anyone need a place to sleep? We've got an empty top bunk!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The gift of gift giving

Cheesy picture. I know.
This post is not about the picture, or the tree or my jeggings(which I am teased by my husband for calling, "spaglings" which I do because they just make me think "spandex!")
This post is about this book and other amazing gifts I have received from my mother-in-law over the years. She seriously has the gift of gift giving and I am so happy to be one of the recipients of her thoroughly thought out gifts.

The coat in the picture was a Christmas gift from my mother-in-law, Christmas 2008. I wear it every winter and it never gets old. A friend of mine recently told me that the first time she ever saw me I was wearing that coat at church. She said she looked at me and thought, "wow, what a beautiful coat. She must be rich." Her thoughts sum up how I feel when I put on this coat. I feel classy and elegant. It's a good feeling once in a while for a housewife ;) but it's not the reason why I really love this coat. I love it because it just looks like me, to me, if that makes sense. I love it because it's something I would have seen at the store and wanted, but never bought for myself. I love that it fits me perfectly and that she knew it would when she bought it. I love that about her gift giving skills. She is so good at it!

Other gifts I have received have been just as good. She bought me a pair of brown cords the first Christmas I was part of the family that are still a favorite. Can you imagine? She barely knew me. We didn't live in the same state. And yet she bought me a pair of pants that I liked and that fit me. My mom laughs because she can't even do that! I am a picky person to buy clothes for. Period.
One year she sent me lingerie for my birthday. You may laugh, but not me. It was just what I, I mean WE, needed at the time! Ha! In her wisdom she knew that we had been married for a little while, money was tight and lingerie is not something I would just go splurge on. So she sent me some new stuff.
There was also a time when she sent me a VISA gift card with a note explaining that I knew better than she did what I needed at the time. She wanted to help and she did, in the perfect way.
I could go on and on. Art for my walls. Nick-nacks for my shelves. Other books. Her gifts are not all the same but they are all for me, specifically and I love that about them. Always my color, my size, my style, to match my bedroom....I am trying to develop this talent but I think it is a real gift that she has been given.

This year I received the book Lost December, by Richard Paul Evans, which I just finished reading. Yep, it took me 2 days, which is unlike my usual 30 days to finish a book and... I didn't even ignore my family to get it read. I knew I would like it the minute I opened it Christmas morning. I knew that it would fit me and it totally did. It was beautifully written and touched my heart from multiple angles. Read it! If you want.

I love opening thoughtful gifts from this special lady. They never disappoint and to be honest.... I can't wait for my birthday!!! (no pressure:)

Monday, December 26, 2011

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas is saying Thank-You

My sister and I decided about a month ago that we were going to put on an Appreciation Brunch for our babysitters. Our mom, Gramy, Aunt Angela, Aunt Melissa, and Chelsey watch our kids...regularly. Jeff and I get a date every week, I get to volunteer multiple times a week in Braxton's class for different activities, we go to the Temple monthly, and we even got away for a weekend this summer all because of these sweet people who love and take good care of our children. They are such a blessing and we are really grateful for all the service they render us all year. I have called many of them last minute and they always come, wearing their happy face and ready to love on my kids. Every mother's dream come true.

So today was the day. We got our kids all dressed up. They got to serve and entertain with Christmas carols and dance moves. Braxton served the toast and kept the waters full. Lesha brought a ham and Cranberry Trifle. I made egg casserole and homemade english muffin bread. We all had a wonderful time. I think this should be a new tradition!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

On the 8th Day of Christmas

We took the kiddos swimming! Me and my sister and a car full of excited kids ventured across the border to the wave pool. It's too good of a deal not to go! $12 for me and my kids is a steal of a deal. Waves, water slides, life jackets, hot tub...
I got in trouble by the life guard twice for not being within arms reach of all of my children, at the same time. I wanted to say, "then what am I paying you for?" but I didn't. I just smiled and said I was trying my best.
Braxton and Adelle were in life jackets the whole time and Emmett didn't want me to put him down so I felt like we were all pretty safe. I know he was just doing his job but for real... I have short arms! Adelle and Braxton are little fish.
My favorite conversation of the trip;
me: "Sis, see that man. He says that you have to stay close to mommy the whole time you are swimming."
Adelle: "just don't worry about it mom. I'm a swimmer."

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

purple mountain of sprinkles

Cute or what!!
There is more where that came from, here .

Ta Da!

As I was posting the last post and mentioning the tile I remembered that I never posted pictures of the finished product.
Ta Da!
It's beautiful and we are really happy with it.
Jeff is so handy to have around! He did a perfect job!

And for not being much of a blue person, I REALLY like the blue stripe.

Centsible Services' first contract!!!

So my already granted Christmas wish of having clear hot water and a newly tiled shower has been beat by the new business getting it's first contract! This is huge, people.

Up to this point Jeff has been doing residential jobs and although it has been great, it has not been as steady as we need. Getting a contract set in stone is a huge relief and a huge blessing. He will continue to do residential jobs but we have a guarantee of work for next year. Yes!

The contract is with the Facility Maintenance Group for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. It is the church we are members of but he was not handed it on a silver platter. Their offices are based out of Everett and he was referred to them by our former Bishop. After consulting with them a few times he got the contract. It wasn't like we knew these people. The contract gives him 23 church buildings which he will be responsible for maintaining the roofs and exterior of the buildings.

For the last two days he has been down south working on some buildings that weren't properly maintained this last year. It has been quite an experience. One that I found thought provoking. Here is what he has been cleaning up;
Gum. I guess there is gum everywhere. This totally grossed me out and surprised me. He explained it to me by saying, "it's like everyone spits out their gum in the bark right by the door before they go into the building." Yuck.
Cigarettes. Yep. Is that crazy? He found a half used carton of cigarettes up on the roof above one of the doors. Again, as if someone tossed them up there before walking into church. Interesting.

I don't really have anything to say about this. I could go off on it but for real, I guess we all have our issues. I just hide mine a little better and respect church property a lot better!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Birthday Boy

Jeff turned the BIG 3-0 today and guess what we did to celebrate?.....

Yep, we put on a Christmas Party for our ward at church.

What a guy, huh!

He didn't get forgotten though. We celebrated his birthday yesterday with his favorite dinner, chicken enchiladas, sparkling cider, presents and cookies.

Then we played some games (thanks for your requests) with some friends and I granted him one of his birthday wishes by staying up late and watching some t.v.(via dvd) snuggled on the couch.

I am so blessed to have this perfect for me man in my life. Life is always a picnic with Jeff and I love that about him. He is always happy, always willing to do whatever. He seriously spent hours at the church today setting up, decorating, cleaning up, putting away, and he couldn't have been happier. I continue to learn from being around my older, and wiser love! :)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

"bad word"

First off these pictures have nothing to do with this post. I just wanted to post them and maybe they should have their own post but I don't have time for that right now.

Emmett went poop on the potty and everyone was there to cheer him on. It was monumental but I've done this enough to where I know it means nothing, except what it is. We celebrated anyways. I am not pushing potty training but he saw Adelle go and wanted to try. Just so happened that it worked. Go M!

Braxton and Sofie have a special bond. The picture of them he had me take so that he could take it for show and tell. Braxton started off being a little scared of the dog. Not really knowing what it meant when she barked, not knowing if she was going to bite him....
But thankfully he has learned that she is the best dog ever and would never hurt him and since then they play and wrestle and really love each other.

Emmett is my cuddle man lately. I can't get enough of him and I still call him baby but he's growing up and quick. He is so fun and entertains us all with his new words and expressions.

Tonight we did some Christmas baking. We are bringing cookies to Braxton's class tomorrow for a party so I figure, get all of the cookies baked and then frost and sprinkle another time. It's always fun and messy!

Ok. Now onto the post.
I got an email from a girlfriend and co-mom yesterday where she was telling me about an instance with her daughter at school. It involved a VERY BAD WORD and we were discussing (electronically) how crazy it is that our little ones are exposed to so much at school.
That leads into my post.
So this morning we all get up. Everyone is busy getting ready. It's the school sing a long today and Braxton has been singing, signing, practicing for the past couple weeks so I expected him to be way more excited than he was. I asked him if he was excited about the sing a long and he said, "yeah, but mom. We have to talk about something." I was a little concerned at this point so I went and sat on his bed and asked him what was going on. This was his response:
"Well one of the songs we are singing has a bad word in it." I asked what the word was. The answer "Hate."
Ah, what a relief is what I was thinking. I was expecting a harsher word. However I was reminded of his pure innocence and sweet gentle spirit. I told Jeff and he cracked up. I told my mom and she said I was just like that when I was a little girl. Then I told Jeff, "we will never have to worry about Braxton." And he came back with, "whatever, those are the ones you have to worry about!"

For now I think we are pretty safe!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's the hap, happiest season of all

Christmas is in full swing around here which may be why my blogging has been a bit neglected. We are busily working on projects, baking cookies, singing carols and addressing cards. The tree is up. We got it early this season and that was such a relief. I feel really on the ball this year for Christmas. Usually I am running around like a chicken with my head cut off but this year the tasks are being checked off the list one by one and I am not a bit overwhelmed by any of it. That is a very merry feeling.

We went to one of the local tree farms that we found close to home and ran by one of Jeff's teachers from the high school. I love a Noble fir and that is exactly what we got for a mere $30. It is the perfect tree and Jeff and Braxton cut it down.

I got to decorate the tree with the kids this year solo. Jeff was busily finishing the bathroom tile while the kids and I trimmed the tree. That meant I had to do the lights, usually Jeff does the lights, and after using 4 strings I lit the whole tree.

I let the kids put the ornaments on the tree which is why all the sparkly red glitter balls that I made with my friend a few years back are all on one branch. It adds character. Adelle put them there and I think that is where they should stay. So they are.

I made our tree skirt this year (with the help of a friend and her awesome sewing machine!) and it is the perfect touch to our tree.

Jeff and I went to our first ever Ugly Sweater Party and it didn't disappoint. Check out Jeff's ugly sweater up above. That baby we picked up at Value Village. When we bought it had something crusted to the top, like whoever wore it last slopped their food, which made it all the uglier. Then when I washed it, it completely shrunk making it all the more funny looking when he put it on. It was a hit. My sweater on the other hand was mistaken by some to be "cute", which I continue to argue. Gold is NOT my color, as my honest mom pointed out to me, and the sweater had shoulder pads! I thought it was totally ugly!

Braxton is learning to sign a bunch of the Christmas songs at school and has a concert coming up this week which we are all looking forward too. Adelle came home from preschool today with homemade gifts that she created.
Emmett is still oblivious but he likes to sing jingle bells and dance around.

Last week after dinner we decided to have a family talent show. First Braxton sang Feliz Navidad and let me tell you that song says the same thing over, and over, and over. Next was Adelle singing Jingle Bells while shaking her hips. Jeff and I were last. We sang a duet you might recall, "Baby it's Cold Outside" after which Braxton flatly said, "well, that was weird." Still makes me laugh out loud the way he said that.

We did our Christmas countdown link again and this year Braxton and Adelle cut their own strips and taped them all together.
My homemade handprint wreath that took so much of my time last year is hanging with pride and I am so glad I stuck it out and kept cutting all those little fingers. I love this decoration.

Braxton came home with a book from school. It was titled Christmas Is...
Christmas is stockings.
Christmas is reindeer
Christmas is candy canes
Christmas is presents
Christmas is Santa
On the last page it said, "Christmas is __________________________________" and on the blank line my little boy wrote thinking about Jesus.

I am thankful that in a Happy Holiday world we are still a Merry Christmas family.

I am looking forward to Christmas break and spending lots of time with loved ones. Also excited about the girl my brother is bringing home at Christmas for all of us to meet :)