Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Santa came and I have proof!!

This year was our very first Christmas in our own home and we absolutely loved it. We did Christmas Eve with my family this year and the kids participated in acting out the Christmas story and we played games, ate lots of food and had a great time.

We went home and got ready for Santa. The kids saw Santa's sleigh the whole way home and Rudolph's nose. We were in a race to beat them to our house. The kids frantically got carrots for the reindeer and 3 cookies for Santa and we couldn't forget milk. Alina had to count the carrots to make sure nobody was sneaking them before we went to bed.

They opened their Christmas Eve pj's and Alina was ecstatic with her new pj's, Austin and Greta were hoping for something else.

As we were getting ready we had a knock on our door and the kids ran to get it and on our doorstep was this.....

Our friends Jamie and Trent think they are pretty funny. Inside the box of the potato heads was a Christmas towel they won as a white elephant gift. They left the towel on our car after they left the party and we returned it to their doorstep. Now that we have it back we'll have to think of a clever way to return it to them. The war is on! Our kids love the potato heads, Alina carries hers around with her everywhere and Cam's even comes complete with a pocket protector.

After the excitement Austin told us he didn't care about the presents we had to wrap for them, he just wanted us to go to sleep so Santa could come. There was so much excitment in our house, it was so fun! The kids layed out their stockings and name tags we had made earlier in the week and they were off to bed. Cam went to check on them and they were looking out Greta's window to see if Santa was on Braden's roof (friends behind us) yet. Then they aksed if they thought Santa could leave a picture of himself. I told them we could write a letter and ask, Austin wanted to leave the video camera on all night to catch him. Here they are pretending to sleep.

Austin was the first one to wake up at 6:30 and we had to get the girls up and they were not happy. Then they remembered it was Christmas and ran down quickly. In my family we had a tradition of getting your favorite treat, food or whatever edible item to eat on the table. Alina requested gummi bears and Austin and Greta got their own donuts. Cam got a ginormous can of hot chocolate and I got fancy syrup for our french toast that morning.

Before we opened presents we had a prayer and laid baby Jesus in his manger and reminded the kids what Christmas is all about. The kids did a lot of service this past month and the bed was very soft. Next year they want to do even more.

Unfortunately we didn't take a single picture of Christmas morning, we only video taped it. But Santa did leave a picture of himself at our house along with a letter to the kids. They were so excited, it was the hit of the day.

Santa brought Austin and Greta the digital camera they wanted and Alina got her bike. He also brought them a personalized book. It's a story about them and their friends. The kids were happy and enjoyed all their new gifts. Cam surprised me with an Ipod and a sewing machine. I got him a golf caddy, and a gift certificate to get the book The Jospeph Smith Papers when they have more in stock, and 2 booster decks to Killer Bunnies.
I made art kits for the kids and put them inside boxes from Costco. Alina's was in a box of stuffing, when she opened it she said "yeah I get my own stuffing!!" That's how excited she was the whole day, she hugged us every time she opened something and was happy with everything. All 3 of them were, it was a great Christmas and the kids are already counting down for next year.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Happenings

We've had a very fun busy week. It started with the First Presidency's Christmas Devotional. We actually got tickets to the conference center and took all our kids. It was neat to be there and see the prophet and feel of his spirit. The kids even thought it was great. A lady sitting in front of us told us our kids were so good and asked us if we had drugged them with Benadryl before we left. She must not have noticed Alina upside down in her chair, on the floor, or kicking the seat in front of her. They did alright though.

After the devotional we walked temple square with about 20,000 other people. It was a bit crazy, but beautiful.

Then I learned how to make my own stockings and I think they turned out great! I love them. They have the colors of Christmas along with my regular decorating colors. Who would've thought I could tie it all together, thanks to Shelley for letting me realize how to put colors together.

Then we made gingerbread houses with the Coe's. Cameron and Trent put on the frosting and were in constant competition on who's house looked better. Boys.

Peggy Cannon in our ward taught me how to make these cute candy lights. I went over to her house and she had everything ready for me. I love these lights and have decided I'm going to make some for my kids rooms for next year.

Then on Saturday we had our ward Christmas breakfast put on by our fabulous Activities Committee. We had an awesome pancake breakfast with scrambled eggs, sausage, and juice. Then Santa came to visit the kids. Some of the kids recognized that Santa was none other than Condon Hansen. Even Alina saw Condon after Santa was gone and told her dad that he was Santa. Kids are too smart.

Even Greta sat on Santa's lap.

Alina pretending to be shy.

Then they had a pajama contest. Cam went up and modeled his pj's with a pink boa. He won the guys award for best pj's.

Then after the party Eagle Mountain City had Santa and Mrs. Claus drive around the neighborhood in a fire truck. It was a great week and now we have another week of fun activities planned. My sister will be here from New York on Thursday and she gets to stay until January 31st so we will have lots of things to do. We can't wait!!
Yesterday the kids did their primary program. They did a great job. Austin told me after that he loves doing the program because it makes his testimony stronger and not so afraid to share it. Even Greta sang and said her part. I love watching my kids learn and gain a testimony, what a great week!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I help out in Austin's class every Monday. Yesterday Miss Reid had me take some kids out in the hall to do spelling tests. Here is a conversation with Austin's friend Isaiah when I asked him to spell "up"

Holly: Spell up
Isaiah laughing. He said, "do you know that when you spell up you say you pee?"
Holly: "Did you hear that from Austin?"
Isaiah: "Yeah, he told everyone that joke, oh can you spell I cup?"

Then another kid came out and I got to the word "we." He spelled it Wii. I said no not that Wii, we like we are going to the store. And he said, "oh that we, that's easy WE." Kids.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Service at Christmas

Christmas is one of our favorite times of year for our family. It seems that nowdays kids are given so much throughout the year that they don't appreciate the gifts given to them at Christmas. Cameron and I really want our kids to feel the true meaning of Christmas, to understand it and want to to good not only at Christmas but always.

My friend last year gave us this manger. It's a service manger for my kids. What they have to do is serve someone, anyone and they get to put a piece of straw in the manger each time they serve. On Christmas morning we put a doll that acts as baby Jesus in the manger and the kids get to see how soft they made his bed with all their service. When we pulled this out of our Christmas decorations the kids remembered and were excited. They instantly started making my bed and each others beds. They always try to be secret about who and how they serve and they work together on serving. I think they are getting the true meaning of Christmas and I love this new tradition in our home.

Yesterday Austin wanted to buy his own Christmas tree with his own money he has earned. It's a little 4.5ft tree and he invited his friends over to help make ornaments. I went upstairs to do some laundry and came down to all 3 of my kids and their friends singing Christmas songs while making ornaments. I grabbed the video camera and taped them without them knowing. It was so cute. Kids feel the spirit this time of year, it's just important that we point out to them that what they are feeling is the Spirit. They'll want to feel it more when they realize what it is they're feeling.

On a side note when Austin and his friends were putting up Austin's tree they were all commenting on how small it is. I told them that if they didn't stop being so negative we wouldn't put it up anymore. Austin's friend Braden looked at me and said, "Oh my gosh this tree is huge, look at how big it is." And then they all had a great attitude about the size of the tree and had fun putting the ornaments on. Kids are so cool!

Merry Christmas!