Wednesday, February 5, 2014


Yes, yes, I'm supposed to be on top of things now with the blog.  I'm supposed to post things on time with regularity, rather than 1-2 months behind, when people no longer care about the milestones that have already passed.  Oh, well.  Here's Christmas anyway :).

Everyone in our house got sick except for the Mama, right around Christmas Day.  The original plan for Christmas was to celebrate at my parents' house (both sides of the extended family).  But since my dad got pretty sick the day before, we moved it to our house at the last minute.  Wowee was I running around like a chicken with my head cut off!  But I gotta tell you, I'm so thankful that I enjoy hosting now.  A couple of years ago I really would have dreaded it, but now I love cleaning up the house, getting it ready, cooking a bunch of food, and having large groups over.  Our house isn't ginormous, so it's not always conducive to big parties, but on Christmas Day, no one seemed to mind, and I was happy as a clam to have everyone over.

Right after Christmas, Papa and Nanna came down to visit and stay for a couple of days.  We played our ritual poker games, of course, and my mom and dad came over to join the fun.  (For those of you who may be highly concerned about my gambling habits, you can rest easy - we throw in $10 each and take home our winnings at the end of the night :) ).

The boys really enjoyed Christmas this year, and I liked slowing down the pace again, enjoying our smaller family unit.  But I also thought a lot about our girls over the couple of weeks surrounding the celebration - thinking about how they were doing with their bio families over the holidays, all of the crazy parties they went to, etc.  I'm thankful we still get to see them regularly at church and that they keep in touch.

Here are some pictures of us celebrating Jesus' birthday in 2013:

Christmas Eve at Nandy's house

Christmas morning

My sweet little niece (more like my 2nd cousin, but I totally claim the title of "Crazy Aunt Jennifer")

Grandpa and Granny enjoying their White Elephant spoils :)

More White Elephant joy
Uncle John and Dad


Building the trampoline from Papa and Nanna

We loved having Papa and Nanna here to visit!  A perfect ending to the Christmas Season!

Coming up Next:

1. B's 7th Birthday
2. Kitchen makeover
3. Home Videos

Sunday, December 22, 2013


Oh me oh my, how time does fly!  I went through iPhoto and organized all of my pictures since 2006 - no easy task, I tell you!  After I finished, I rewarded myself by going through and looking at all of my pictures from 2013.

Here's what I LOVE about photographs:  you don't take a picture of it if you don't want to remember it, so if you bothered with a snapshot, it's going to be pretty fun and fabulous, filled with memories you actually want to preserve.

I didn't realize what a truly blessed year our family has had until I looked through our pictures.  There are so many things we get to do - because we live in this nation, because my kids go to the schools they go to, because of the neighborhood we live in, because of our church, and of course our family and friends.

Since we've moved, the time has FLOWN.  We've stuffed in soccer and football, multiple field trips, play dates, multiple Family Fun Nights (to be expanded upon in another blog post), shows and productions, teaching Sunday school, trips to Searcy to see my in-laws, all kinds of fantastic home improvement projects (which I heart and will also hopefully be expanded on later), cooking adventures, and other goodies I can't think of right now.  I really can't believe Christmas is this week, and that 2013 is almost over.

They say time flies when you're having fun, but for me it's more accurate to say time flies when you get your life back :).  This year has kicked my fanny for quite a few reasons, so I won't really be sad to watch 2013 fade back in my rearview mirror, but it's nice to be able to look back and find beauty in the yucky stuff.  I've been praying for growth - that God will give me more strength and wisdom, more dependence on Him, more compassion, more forgiveness, and more grace for others through what I've seen and experienced this year.

Since the year is closing up, and I haven't written regularly in so long, I thought I'd post a few highlight photos from this year (starting from the most recent, all the way back to Spring):