Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Season

This year Mike and I told our kids the truth about Santa. We felt  we had a choice-either focus on Christ this Christmas or make them continue believing in a fairy tale being. But they took it actually well. So during the month of December we did several activities to ensure our children understood the real meaning of Christmas.
We did a few acts of charity. We did 27 days of service. Most were for neighbors,friends, or family members but one of them was feeding the homeless. I borrowed this image from Google. I sat down with our kids and explained what homeless meant and how it's our responsibility to help care for all of Heavenly Father's children. So the next day we made sack lunches. The kids were so happy to do it. But when it came time to drop the lunches off at the shelter we were alittle scared so Mike went into the shelter to drop them off.

Next was Temple Square. Mike's family had a wonderful Christmas party at Daina's house. Laughs, Food, the kids ran crazy but afterwards most people had to leave except us and Daina and Aaron. So we headed to Temple Square to see the fantastic lights.

 Hailey was stuck on Daina the 95% of the time.

Another wonderful way to express Christ in Christmas was being with friends. Or I should say help making friends. My Primary co-teacher helped set up a small Christmas party for our kids. It was so nice to see everyone having fun with each other. Each child holds a special talent or skill that we all have learned from this past year.
We hope that they remember this day and continue to be friends with each other even after they moved on to bigger and better things.
But this season we tried to take the focus OFF of gifts and remember the story of Christ. The 3 wise men brought 3 gifts to the Savior. So we copied that...3 gifts. 1 big one for each one and 2 smaller ones. Besides books (which our kids love) they each were happy with their gifts.
I am so proud of Mike. He made our girls this kitchen from an old dresser. 2 ovens, 2 stove top burners, 1 sink. He is so creative. And they loved it!

 I made the aprons from on old pillowcase. That's all I really did to contribute to this gift.
 Cati was so happy for her nesting/stacking blocks and pillow pet that my mom gave her.
 Our little elves. They are so cute!
 Mason was so happy for his Bionicle Lego's. Boys and their Lego's.
Mike and I didn't get each other much this year. Actually we didn't get each other anything.  Since he's been working on our van for the last few weeks we haven't seen much of each other. So on Christmas night we had a date on our couch. He picked up some movies for us. I picked up our favorite snacks and we enjoyed each other's company.  Mike has a quote that is fantastic-Christmas is about presence NOT presents! 
I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Hailey's 5

Hailey is the last birthday in our BIG stretch in birthdays. But after thinking it over I think she had a pretty awesome birthday. On Saturday 12/11 she had her Ballerina Snowflake party. It was a huge success.
I had a total of 8 girls in our living room that all had so much fun. (The boys went shooting. They reallly missed out on all the girlie-ness) 

We all snacked on some food ( I never knew young girls can eat so much :-)

 They had some much needed girl talk....

  played a few games...

opened presents....then opened the wrapping to play with them

 Sang "Happy Birthday".....

I wanted each girl to have their own cupcake with a candle to blow out. I figured it would be more fun to everyone and less spit from Hailey blowing on everyone's cake.

But then came the entertainment....a dance lesson with a local ballet teacher. What's a Ballerina party without dancing?  I made each girl a white ballet skirt to wear during their lesson. They loved them! So well worth the pokes and burns on my fingers.

Here's a group photo of all the girls who came and helped make Hailey's birthday a special day. Thank you girls.
(Each girl went home with their skirt, a copy of the music...hopefully they have showed you their dance & a small goodie bag)

But on 12/14 (Hailey's actual bday) we were going to go out and have fun but our van had another plan for us. Since it broke down we stayed home. (But weird enough Mike fixed it later that evening) But in the morning I made her Waikki meatballs for breakfast (the joys of picking your  birthday menu)
Then she opened our presents-
She picked her favorite movie, Shrek 3, and enjoyed a good movie morning. And of course we had cake! But this time I made a "less sugary"cake. Strawberry Shortcake with Angel Food Cake.
She was so sweet and understanding when our van wasn't working. She really showed Mike and I how mature she is really becoming....well for alittle bit at least-
She and Cati dived into the cake after everyone got a scoop and pretty much at the rest of it.
Our Sweetheart is now a whole hand. Happy Birthday Hailey!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Nicco Dayz

We went to Mike's company Kid Christmas Party. I have to admit that it was a pretty awesome party. We seen the Grinch there who was passing out bags of goodies. Santa took photos that I can't find right now. The kids decorated cookies with Mrs. Claus.

Made Gingerbread house photo frames with Elves.

Plus we all colored with an Angel, seen a Christmas Tree caroling around the room and enjoyed some yummy lunch with all of Mike's coworkers and bosses. We all had a great time.


I thought I would be better when this day came. I have been planning and prepping for it for several months. And now today Ducati is 1 year old. Our last baby is now a toddler. (I have been having some mommy issues) But to bring in the BIG 1 we did our famous family traditions...
Starting with going to Hogle Zoo.... Every kid has been to Hogle Zoo when they turned 1. We bundled up and enjoyed the day.

 ( sniff* she's a Juvenile monkey)
 (Mike and his new BFF)

 (yes this giraffe was licking the bottom of our shoes)

Next tradition- 1st Happy Meal..... I remember when she needed help with things like lids and spoons. But I guess it's a good thing she's growing up.

(She's learned a great technique to go down the slide without anyone helping her)

After all was said and done we came home for some cake...
Ducati is growing and learning every day. Good thing we have taught her a couple of important life lessons-
But even though I'm having some mommy issues I am so glad she had a great birthday.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Almost 1

Tomorrow our baby is going to be 1. She's grown up too fast. At first she needed everything from me. It was annoying at first but then it made our bond grow even more. But now she's crawling everywhere, climbing on things, days away from taking her first step, and I can see her brain trying to figure everything out herself. She's showing alot of her own personality. With every word she says and every raspberry she gives. And I know I'm jumping the gun but this past year has gone by so fast the next one will be even faster. She's will always be a momma's girl...or at least I hope she will.