Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I continue to stand amazed!!!!!!!!

I continue to stand amazed at the miracle of birth. For me, there are few other things on earth that are more beautiful. God's continued love and mercy for us is shown as each new life is born. We got to experience this first hand yesterday as we joined Amy, Leoncio and Mariana at the birth of their son, my nephew and your first boy cousin!!!! An excited family...just a few hours before he arrived.

He's here!!! 7lbs, 10 oz. 21 inches long.

A sweet family of four!!!

Proud Big Daddy!!!

Kisses from grandmothers!!!!

One very happy big sister!!!!
Leoncio's mom brought you girls these gorgeous outfits from Mexico. The tradition is to wear them on special for this very special occasion, we decided it was more than appropriate to dress up!!!

WE couldn't stop staring at him.........
This truly was the BEST way to end the year of 2008 and begin a new journey in 2009!!!! We love you, Josue' (Joshua) Daniel and can't wait to come to know who God has created you to be. Welcome to our family!!!

A new experience!!

Last Saturday was a beautiful, warm winter day. In the morning, we got out and you girls rode your new scooter and bike while mommy ran close by. Later that afternoon, the Nowers called us and asked if we wanted to go the the Rainey's farm. Jerry and Linda go to church with us and "Miss" Linda is your teacher's aide, Caroline. They live not too far from us and have the most beautiful land FULL of animals. We enjoyed it so much and had some new experiences!!! I got to pet a cow....this is Glory, the Nowers cow that they bottle fed as a calf. Mr. Jerry says he acts more like a dog than a cow!!!

This was a four day old, calf. She was so cute to watch...jumping around all over and full of excitment. Caitlyn, you were trying to get her to come to you. She would get pretty close, then jump away.

Caroline, you liked petting on the was like our very own petting zoo!!!

Mr. Jerry has several horses, but these were so special. This is Thunder and Cricket...miniature horses and the perfect size for you both. You girls got to ride on these for a long time...Caitlyn, you even fell off, but after a few tears, got right back on. We were so proud of you!!!
We are so thankful to have made new friends and hope to go back time and time again!!! Maybe, we'll turn you girls into farmers yet!!!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Memories

We began our Christmas festivities on Christmas Eve morning with a brunch at Mimi and Papa's house. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, so I really look forward to this time. Here are Sleeping Beauty and Ariel after our meal, waiting paitently to open gifts. New monogrammed suitcases for traveling..... so fun!!! I can still remember getting my very own suitcase from my grandmother when I was a little girl.

Here is Daddy, supporting his new jacket, scarf and brown shoes....a true model!

Mimi and Papa loved the picture calendar we made for them.

You girls were "helping" Papa unwrap his gift!

A favorite item of the day, that was met with lots of screams (even from Daddy!), was the Vandy outfits and pompoms!

After coming back home from Mimi and Papa's to rest for awhile, we had some surprise guests....David "Shaubie" and his daughters came bringing gifts. You sure are two loved little girls!!!

The tradition now for over 7 years has been to get together for soup on Christmas Eve at Mammi and Big Daddy's. Mammi makes Turkey hash, a favorite among the family, and we play bingo, decorate gingerbread men, and exchange gifts. Mimi and Papa always join us, too. It is one of my favorite times of the holiday!

The gingerbread men.........

Playing bingo..........

Opening gifts..........pixos!!!

Jewelry from Camille and Wes

Finally home again that night, we went outside to put out the reindeer food..........

The Christmas loot from Santa!!!!!!!!!!

Your excited hugs after seeing what Santa left you........what you both had asked for... a new bike and scooter with matching helmets and knee pads!!!

Checking out the remains of the milk and cookies..........Santa sure must be full after all those cookies all night long. Caitlyn you said, "That is what makes his tummy jiggle around!"

A new silver and pink necklace from momma and daddy!

The other "coveted" item on Caroline's list......a Dora backpack!!!! Thank you, Santa!!!

Mommy and Daddy showing off our items from Caitlyn. You wanted us to wait for Christmas morning to open them. We loved our gold, macaroni wreath, a painted clay pinch pot and an ornament with a picture of you and Santa inside. Thank you, baby!
After we opened presents, we had another guest come see us. Mr. Davis (our next door neighbor) has,for years, gone from house to house and played Christmas carols on his baritone. It was such a treat for us to hear...our own personal concert!!!

I have such sweet memories of having Christmas brunch at Granny's growing up. I am not sure when Aunt Joy took this tradition over, but we have been going to her house for years now for the annual Christmas brunch. She and Uncle Wilson cook most of the food and it is AMAZING!!! We don't eat the rest of the day because we eat so much there!!! Amy looks like she ate a little too, she is still patiently waiting for little Josue' to make his entrace into the world. We are all so ready to meet this little guy!!!
It was a beautiful day, and we took your new bike and scooter to the brunch and you girls rode for a long time outside.

Sharing the scooter with Mariana...

Our final tradition is going to see a movie that afternoon. You girls have only seen five movies at a theater, so it is such a BIG DEAL! Mammi even splurged and got us a huge bucket of popcorn and drinks.
What a full and fun few days it has been!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We thank you, Jesus, for the miracle of your birth....we are so thankful to live in a place that will honor you at this time of year and take time to stop and be with loved ones and celebrate the reason for TRUE LIFE. We pray we can honor you each and every day as we love one another.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Parties, presents and caroling

It has been a week of celebrating, eating, baking, singing, and enjoying friends and family. It began last Thursday at Otter Creek Preschool with your program and party, Caroline. My camera didn't get very good shots of you singing, but the show was precious, as always. My favorite song was, "I want a Hippopatamus for Christmas!"

You and buddies!

After a little coaxing, you got up in Santa's lap...and told him what you wanted.....a scooter and a Dora backpack!

Caitlyn, your class had a party the next day and it was wild. All the children were sooooooo excited.....I don't know about you, but I was quite overstimulated when it was over! Whew...I have SUCH respect for your Kindergarten teacher!!! Here you are playing a game called "shoveling snow". You had vaseline on your nose and had to roll as many cotton balls on your nose and into the cup as fast as you could. You won the game...what talent!!!!!!Your class had made adorable Christmas tree shirts the week before and you all wore them, except for Garrett...the new boy that came last week. You have turned into the social butterfly and were so excited to make a new friend!

After your party, we went to Coal and Claire's house for pizza and to decorate cookies. Since we don't go to the same school or church as the Dyes, we try and get together over breaks. Needless to say, at the end of that day, you were on a sugar high and crashed!!!!!!!!
Saturday night we drove out to Mt. Juliet for the Dowlen family Christmas. You girls helped me make deviled eggs and brownies that day for the big potluck supper. We ate until we were stuffed and then exchanges gifts. Here you are with your sweet cousins, Ashley and Kevin. They were so sweet to play "school" with you two that night!

Dressing up in Aunt Judy's earings..............

Showing excitement over lipgloss and a cupcake maker!!!!!!!
Finally, on Sunday night, we met some of the moms and children from your class at school, Caitlyn, and went caroling. It was your first experience and something I had not done since high school. It was so cold, but I think we made a lot of people smile that night!!!!

We're counting down........two more days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Two random things.........

I had to celebrate tonight when you girls ate CHICKEN POPPYSEED!!!! Some people wouldn't be as excited, but you two are so funny about eating things mixed together. Mammie calls you "purists". Typically, for supper, you eat meat, fruits and veggies...every now and then, you will eat macaroni and cheese, but that is rare. Even pizza isn't your favorite because of the "mixed" ingredients. Needless to say, I am THRILLED...we have branched out!!!!!!!! We may have this once a week!!!!
On another note, as I was cleaning the dishes tonight...and you, Caroline, were eating your dessert ( a brownie), you said, rather out of the blue, "Mommy, I love you the whole wide world." I'm not sure if it was just because I let you have chocolate or if you just felt you needed to tell me, but for whatever heart soared!
I love you the whole world, too!!!!!!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Let it snow!

What an unexpected surprise we received Thursday night!!! We fell asleep to snow coming down........and here was our view in the morning!!!

Schools were closed and we got to stay in our pj's a lot longer than normal was SOOO nice not to have to rush out the door!! However, the two of you were so anxious to get outside and play!! Normally, we get all suited up and you only want to stay for a few minutes. This time, we stayed out about an hour and a half! It was so fun!

Since we don't have a sled (that is on the list of "to dos" now!), we settled for making snow angels, shoveling piles, a snow fight and even a little hide and seek. We get snow so rarely around here, it is just a treat to be out in it for awile.

We attempted a snowman........poor thing, he turned out a little puny!! The beauty of the white blanket didn't last long, though.........most of it was gone by the afternoon. It sure did help to get us all in the Christmas spirit!!

Here you are this morning before just looked so sweet.... I wanted to remember the way you looked today.
I love you, girls.