Saturday, December 27, 2014

Happy Birthday!

The baby girl turned 11 yesterday!
She was born the day after Christmas 2003. That meant she was 364 days old on her first Christmas and never got one of those special "Baby's 1st Christmas" outfits. They don't make them to fit almost-one-year-olds. She never did complain about that, though. And she doesn't seem to mind having her birthday so close to another big day.
Yesterday we surprised her with the help of some friends. They hid in the kitchen and then jumped out and surprised her. It took her a bit of time to recover from the surprise and shock, but she loved it! She also loved the sprinkle-coated cake and twisty candles and playing her favorite game with more than three people.

A special thanks to our friend Aaron for the photos.

And, just for fun, one of my favorite photos from their trip to the coast earlier in December. Salt water and air must wash away most traces of sibling rivalry.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Our altered-Altoid-tin countdown to Christmas Day is filled, on the fridge, and ready. Some of the tins have already been removed -- believe me, Carolyn doesn't let us get behind!
 And both of my "minions" are ready for some fun! Carolyn and I decorated Andy's door while he was gone to Bible study.
Then Andy and I decorated Carolyn's door while she was making cookies at Grandma's house.

The trees are up and decorated (very similar to last year's forest of trees), the handprint candles are on the table, and the Snoopy table runner has been ironed and put on display. We do enjoy the season and our fun little traditions.

This year, I've been reading Preparing My Heart for Advent and I'm really, really enjoying it and feeling challenged. Yesterday I underlined this sentence: "Advent is a time to wait, anticipate, and prepare our hearts for the coming of Jesus." I marked it because that is really what I want our celebrations and funny little things to lead my children (and myself!) to -- anticipating Jesus.