Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's the Most Wonderful Time.....

Just a quick couple of pictures of the beginnings of our December.  Oma was faithful again this year with a box of wonderful dresses from Once Upon a Child.  There are not enough Sundays for all the cuteness we have hanging in the closet :)
I made an advent calendar this year for the girls.  We do one activity everyday till Christmas....some are complicated, some are easy, all are fun.  One night we had hot chocolate and stirred it with candy canes.....
Another day we made Christmas cookies and decorated them.....and then didn't give them to anyone like I had planned but ate every single one.  I'm pretty sure Hadley did more licking than frosting so it was probably better they weren't given away.  
More cute outfits....these are from Deb and Roger (friends of my parents they knew while stationed overseas before I was born).  SO SWEET!
Some more photo shoot pictures.....

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Feast

And the diet is back on! :)  Before we get to that though, here are a couple of pictures from last Saturday.  One of our dear friends ran in a half marathon in downtown Louisville so we went to see her finish....then we got some free pizza and some time to jump in the bouncy castles.  I had to get in with Jo because she isn't always very sure about them.
Hadley on the other hand loves them.
Then our first Christmasy outing.  The tree I told you about that my friend Kelly and I decorated was on display so we went to see it.  There were TONS of trees and only one other Western one....it was fun to see what everyone came up with.
You can't see it really well but it was darling!
They had a balloon animal maker there too.  Hadley got a puppy she could "walk" and Jo got a giraffe.  Needless to say, neither made it to the car.
Some rainy day fun....I attempted to build a fort out of chairs in the living room.  It was a huge hit for about 5 minutes but they kept falling....plus my children are climbers and wanted to be on top instead of underneath....what can you do?
So for Thanksgiving we went to Indianapolis to see Jon, Heather, and Nolan.  The kids played so well and we were sad to leave!  It was such an encouraging and fun time as usual and we love having them so close so we can do this as often as we like!  I made my famous turkey cookies for the everyone and Hadley wanted to help.
She actually did a pretty good job putting hers together.
The kids looking out the window...they were so good all day....they played hide-and-seek, watched the Macy's Parade, ate a good meal, and enjoyed all the attention that three cute kids can get.
Our sweet families!
Happy Thanksgiving!
Playing on the floor with everyone....
The feast.....yams, Jon's grandma's special noodles (so so good), lima beans, stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn casserole, gravy, and rolls.....
turkey, jello/pretzel salad, jalapeƱo corn, and for dessert: 3 kinds of pie, a cake, and cookies.
And of course, Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without an afternoon nap (Jon's grandma was in heaven with all the sweet sleeping babies).
Naps and games.....it was the perfect day!
Since Andy starts finals this week (another semester down....yahoo!!!) we couldn't stay much longer at the Hughes' :(  We did make it the park for a bit and and played at the house some too, but our visits always seem shorter than we would like!
The last thing we did before driving home was see the town of Noblesville (where Jon and Heather live) light up their big town Christmas tree.  They had a little concert before hand and while the kids didn't want to sit and listen the whole time, it was fun to hear Christmas songs and see people in the Christmas spirit.     
Going for a little walk during the concert.  Heather and Jon are expecting their second the beginning of February and we are so excited for them!  Nolan is going to be a great big brother!
Merry Christmas!  My favorite time of year is here!
Hope you had a Thanksgiving filled with THANKS!  We are looking forward to all the Christmas parties to attend, the Christmas cookies to eat, and the time we get each year to think about our God who came to  earth as a sweet little baby to live and die for us.  We are headed to San Antonio again in a few weeks (this time with Andy too) to celebrate with Nana and Papa.  More December fun to come!  Love to you all!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Rest of Halloween......

Here are the pumpkin carving pictures!  It was quick thing (after church before nap) but we did it and the girls had fun.
 EEEEEEYYOUUU (said in squeaky little Joni voice)
Eating lunch while Dad did the carving.  Hadley wanted a butterfly and a giraffe.  So we gave her the butterfly and Joni got a giraffe (which she loves). 
So my new favorite time waster is Pinterest (if you don't have extra time to spare don't go there)!  Anyways, I love it and I found these cupcakes I wanted to try for Halloween.  You cut the middle out and put in different colored frosting so when you cut it or bite into it you see a candy corn.  They turned out ok (tasted really good) but looked much better on Pinterest (which, for those of you who don't know, is a virtual pin-board online.  There are recipes, organization ideas, picture taking ideas, and on and on)!  Again, beware if you dare check it out how awesome it is.
I made the cupcakes for our church get together.  We ate delicious GUMBO (YUMMMMM) and then gathered together to learn how Halloween came about and why we should try to be the Light of the World at such a "dark" time.
Then the we sang some worship songs and the kids danced and played.
Our finished pumpkins.....Raise the Praise is my new saying.....to remind myself and others to give God all the Glory because He is the only one that deserves it.
I don't know if you noticed but after staring at the pumpkins sitting on our coffee table for a week it finally hit me that the butterfly is upside-down.  It was a good thing it was time to throw them out because after I realized my mistake, it was rather bothersome to me.  :)
Our good friend Kelly Logan and I decorated a tree for the children's hospital in town.  You pick one up, decorate it however you want and then they sell all the trees.  The girls had fun playing.....
then we got down to business.  We went with the Western theme and it turned out stinkin' cute!
Take a walk down by the river.....more pictures of our Christmas photo shoot to come!
Love to you all!!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hippos, Costumes, and San Antonio

Jumping right in.....our dear friends were in great need (due to some surgeries and other things) of a night to themselves and Andy and I took 2 of their 3 boys for the night.  We started off the "slumber party" at the zoo (I did 4 kids by myself and rocked it---Raise the Praise!) and then we went home and had a movie night.  They were wonderful and Andy and I enjoyed having a family of 6 for an evening!  Our desire for a large family wasn't diminished a bit :)
 Here they are.....Caleb (drinking from Hadley's pink water bottle), Hadley and Nate, and Joni leading the way.
 Andy's parents, Janet and Kemper, were so awesome and invited the girls and I down for a Women of Faith Conference in San Antonio last weekend.  We had such a great time and Hadley was beside herself with excitement about getting to ride on FOUR airplanes!!!  Joni was old enough too to look out the window and know that this wasn't something she got to do everyday.  
 It was in the 80s and 90s while we were there and since Nana and Papa have a nice backyard now, we sent them out with some water to play in.....
 which quickly became water to swim in.
 While Janet and I went to the conference, Papa and the girls (I know, he took them on for 2 whole days and did awesome!) kept themselves busy.  One of the outings was a Fall Festival at their church and so we made some cupcakes for the event.  The girls were pumped to "help."
Joni is just like her mom and her sister and LOVES her sweets....yes, that is frosting on her eyelash.
 The finished cupcakes which we were told were the "prettiest" ones there.
 Nana was so proud of herself and her "Barb-garage-sale-skills" when she found this sweet setup one day driving home from work.  The girls played and played in it!  Huge hit!  Joni is playing peek-a-boo with me in the middle.
 The Women of Faith conference was a wonderful time of WORSHIP........
 and LAUGHING.....
 and being able to see a little bit of San Antonio.....Janet and I took a riverboat tour during one lunch break and it was beautiful!
 If you live in TX and haven't been to a Rudy's yet.....GO!  Their sign says the WORST BBQ IN TEXAS but I guarantee you it is the exact opposite.  As much as we hate having Janet and Kemper so far away, there is some comfort in knowing we'll get to have Rudy's whenever we visit!  :)
 This is the church cat.  I think it just showed up one day and they started feeding it, so it never left.
Playing with a water feature at an outdoor mall we visited.
 And if they have a zoo, we will come.  The San Antonio zoo was very nice but again, very hot.
 Looking at the fish....
 and the snakes.....
 an elephant taking a bath.....
and an eagle up close and personal....
 We saw these pipe-cleaner spiders at the zoo and Janet wanted to make some.  They turned out so great and we built a web and hung them up.
 Playing on the escalator at the airport trying to kill some time.  Some of you might think I was crazy to take 2 little girls by myself on an airplane (I did too).  But God is sovereign and good and because I had a whole troop of people praying for me....IT WAS AWESOME!   Really, they were so good (slept 2 of the 4 flights) and were wonderful!  It can be done people......but only with the help of the Lord!
 And lastly, another fun fall morning where the girls got to wear their costumes and get some more candy.......  
 and jump on bouncy-houses.....
 and sit in firetrucks (Hadley loved this)....
 and pet pigs!  They had a petting zoo with chickens you can hold, a bunny, a donkey, a llama, this pig, and a miniature pony.  
 Joni is trying to pet the bunny.
Only one more post to come with costumes and fall fun then onto Thanksgiving and CHRISTMAS!!!!  Tomorrow night we are getting together with a bunch of people from church and teaching our kids how important it is to be a Light in this world, especially during Halloween, which can bring out scary dark creepy bloody icky things.  Love to you all!