Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Big Snow Storm Of 2009

We definitely finished off 2009 with a bang in the snow department.  The total snow fall over Christmas was 16 - 20 inches. This was by far the most snow our kids have ever seen.  I think the last time I saw snow like this was when I was in college.  It definitely made this Christmas a year to remember for the kids. They had a blast staying at their cousins house and they couldn't get enough of the snow! 

Eric helped the kids at the top of the hill get ready for big decent! 

Shane with a very relaxing landing!

Shane and Mia needed to be rescued numerous times from the deep snow.  It was a little bit hard for these two to get around at times!

These two don't look like they are having any fun do they?

Shane had so much fun with his daddy in the snow.  What a treat to have all this time playing with daddy in the snow!

Eric got his work out in pulling the kids around in the snow!

Uncle Jay decided to get the Gator out and pull the kids around the driveway!  

Look no hands!

Eric would hide along the route and jump out and scare them or chase them.  The kids thought it was so much fun and eagerly anticipated where Eric would appear next!

The kids came in with rosy cheeks but big smiles.  They of course wanted some hot chocolate to warm up!  

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Books And Ornaments For 2009

Every year I try to find a special book or two to add to our collection of Christmas books.  This year we added to. 

The first one was the Nutcracker.  The girls were so excited to open this book.  This book is to represent our first year that the girls and I went to the Nutcracker together.

Our second special book is The Christmas Miracle.  It is something I saw and had to pick up as we journey to our little boy in China.

Every year we give the kids ornaments.  I try to find something that has a special tie to the year.  

This year Alexa got a cupcake which represented her fun Cupcake Birthday party.  Emma's is a chalkboard which was for her new adventure in Kindergarten.  Shane's ornament is a soccer ball. He thought he was big stuff that he got to play soccer this year with his sisters. And the fourth ornament if for our little boy in China.  He was born in our hearts in 2009! 

Papa and Grammy get the kids ornaments each year as well.  Alexa's was "There's No Fun Like Snow Fun!"  So fitting for this Christmas with all the snow and the hours she played out side.  Emma's couldn't have been more perfect.  It was a "Fashion Queen."  Shane got "A Barrel-of-Fun Grandson!"  That's our Shane!

Grammy Sue got the girls these sweet angels and Shane this cute little snowman! Looks like the tree is going to be quite a bit fuller next

Better Late Than Never

On Sunday, the storm broke and we headed back home.  The girls were pretty sure Santa just might have come while we were gone except that we didn't hang the stockings before we left. They also were not sure how he fared in the storm with his reindeer's.  We visit Santa before Christmas but don't make a huge deal about Santa at our house. Shane actually asked me why Santa brings some kids big presents and sets them under their tree.  I replied by telling him that his dad and I like to give him and his sisters special presents and Santa probably doesn't think he needs special presents from him too.  Shane said, "Yea he probably knows I have a lot of toys already!" So we debated about even doing Santa this year but I had stocking stuff so we decided the kids would think "better late than never!"

The kids woke up to stockings full of goodies on Monday morning.  
A little piece of cookie left ....

and a note from Santa!

They were pretty excited when they peeked their heads out their bedroom door and saw that Santa had come during the night.

Emma was excited about her new reversible bag!

Shane thought his new electric Wally toothbrush was super cool!

Alexa wondered how Santa knew that she loved Fairies and crafts.  On a side note I was pretty sure Alexa would figure out the whole Santa isn't real thing this year.  Her cousin even told her he was make believe but she chose to believe he still is exists.  

Emma's expression when she found some sparkly powder!

What a fun after Christmas treat! It actually worked out great that Santa came late.  We had nothing planned this whole week so the kids have enjoyed their jammie days at home with all their new toys!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas At Papa And Grammy's House

On Saturday we went to my parents to celebrate Christmas.  We all gathered to take the traditional Christmas picture while all the kids were awake and happy.  I love seeing how our family grows and changes every year! 

We started the morning with a yummy brunch that my mom made.  Every year we have peaches and cream, egg bake, fruit and granola, muffins and this year she added a baked french toast.  

What a full table! 

The four youngest get a little eating in but a lot of socializing!

We then moved into the family room for stockings and baskets.  There is not enough room to hang all the stockings so Grammy fills baskets for the kids.  It is something they look forward to every year! 

They love all the goodies that Grammy finds for their baskets! Socks, underwear, lotion, ornaments, movies,  ......

Then it was the big kids turn to open their stockings.  We all love the fun things that my mom finds for our stockings too. We look forward to them every year.  

We gathered in the sun room to open gifts.  The scenery was picture perfect this Christmas.  It truly was a beautiful white Christmas!

Oh the many expressions of Christmas above! Christmas through the eyes of a child is priceless!

Speaking of priceless! Don't you just want to kiss my niece's cheeks! She was such a fun addition to the celebration this Christmas!

Shane was pretty tuckered out after all the days of fun. He decided to relax a little while as he flew his new Geo-Trax airplane.

The kids were begging to get out in the snow.  

Darby and Alexa spent hours in the snow.  A highlight for them was playing hide and seek with Papa and Aunt Ang.

Emma was all about trying to find the biggest icicle

The blonds stop for a little rest! 

Shane needed a little help from dad once again!

They went from walking through the deep snow to crawling!

We finished the night with a yummy dinner and then the kids got their jammies on.  Every year Grammy finds matching jammies for the kids.  Pretty soon they aren't all going to fit on the bed!

Thanks Papa and Grammy for a great day! 

Christmas Day 2009

On Christmas day we waited for my brother's driveway to be cleared and then hopped in the 4 wheel drive Tahoe and headed to Eric's sister's house to spend Christmas day as a family.

We started the day with a yummy brunch! We had french toast with strawberries and homemade whip cream, scrambled eggs with mushrooms and onions, bacon and pineapple.  No McDonald Christmas brunch is complete with out pineapple dipped in sour cream and brown sugar.  You may be thinking that sounds weird! I did when Eric's family first introduced me to it but you'll have to try it! It is yummy!

As you can see the kids are loving their Christmas brunch.  The homemade whip cream was a hit! Shane kept asking for more whip cream and strawberries on his french toast.  

Oh, the anticipation by cousin Callie!

Emma loved her Nail Art book from Grammy Sue.  Every time Grammy comes for a visit Emma asks if she will do her nails so the salon is usually set up in our kitchen! I'm sure Emma will get Grammy Sue to try out her new colors and designs before she heads back to Washington!

Shane is more than excited about his Lego trucks!  I think we are going to have to figure out some type of Lego organization system after this Christmas.  I have a feeling this is just the beginning! Any tips out there?

The 3 girls opening their gifts from Aunt Molly with anticipation!

Very excited about their new iPod Shuffles! 

Big hugs for Aunt Molly!

After opening gifts the kids were itching to get out in the snow! Eric and Aunt Lori decided to take the 4 wheeler out.  Uncle Roger warned them about driving through the deep snow.  It looks like they hit a drift that was a little too deep! They had to scoop their way back out!

Back in business!

Shane was getting a little tired and frustrated! That deep snow was pretty tough for him to get around in but he was a trouper and tried his best to keep up with the 3 girls!

Daddy to the rescue! Look how deep that snow was on Eric.  No wonder Shane had some issues traveling through the snow.  

Aunt Lori and the girls loving life! They spent tons of time in the snow on Christmas Day! 

We finished out the evening with 2 yummy pasta dishes that Eric made and some salad and bread! Then it was time for the Christmas jammies!

The kids had such a fun day with their cousins!

I think these two little boys could be trouble in the near future!

We loaded up and headed back to my brothers.  The typical 10-15 minute trip took about 45 minutes in the tough, white-out road conditions.  We met one car on the way back to my brother.  I think others were smart than we were and took the travel advisory to heart!  We made it back to my brothers safe and sound!  What fun memories we made this Christmas!

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