Thursday, December 27, 2012

Our Babysitter

Our daughter has recently started babysitting!

She is good at it and she genuinely enjoys it!  She also enjoys the feeling of putting her money in the bank!  She is saving up for contacts which she hopes to get this coming summer.  We are happy that she is getting the opportunity to work and learn about money. 


We have been so blessed and I have to blog about it so that my family and I will always remember.  Finances have been stretched ever so thin during the last half of this year causing some concern about how we would provide certain necessities for our family.  We were abundantly blessed with a bountiful garden this summer and a neighbor who taught us how to preserve  our garden produce for the winter.  We were given hundreds of pounds of fruit which we bottled and froze.  Our jars are full. We had a successful hunt and were given meat from friends' successful hunts...our freezer is full.  When medical needs couldn't be ignored any longer, family stepped in and helped us out for which we feel so much gratitude and love.  We were given opportunities to work...unexpected work that helped us when we didn't know how we would get through.  We were concerned that we wouldn't be able to provide any Christmas gifts for our children, yet they had one of the best Christmases ever...not because of what they received, but because of the love that they have felt from those who have shared so much.  We love you all and we are so grateful!  We also are so cognizant of the Lord's hand in our lives and we know that he is aware of our struggles and that our prayers are heard and answered. 

Merry Christmas

 Santa's elves were very busy this year! 

 Bright and early, 6:30, the kids were up and bouncing off the walls with excitement!

 Waiting to come up the stairs to see what is under the tree.


 Santa brought a bike for each person in our family....we will now be able to go on rides all together instead of just a few at a time.

 Stocking contents

 Secret Santa gift!  This year each of the kids was a secret Santa to a sibling.

 They were so excited to give each other gifts!

 They picked some very thoughtful gifts.

 This one was very well received!

 A new pair of tennis shoes!

 New guitar strings and a capo!

 My parents gave me some music...not just any music, but music from my childhood!!!  Thank you!

 Pictures of the moon and stars that Grandpa took through his telescope.

 Gift from our cousins:  a Wii!!!

 This guy is set!!

 No way!!!  

 Total surprise!!

 Thank you Grandpa!!!

 We are lucky boys!!!

 Listening to a tutorial.

 A beyblade battle.

 Mom spent all morning building legos.

 We spent all afternoon dancing...

and competing on Wii sports!  We had a very, very Merry Christmas!

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve!  We started the day with our tradition of breakfast with our good neighbors.  I didn't get any pictures, but it was lots of fun.  We are very blessed to have such good friends.

We continued the day with more tradition...going to see a movie as a family.  We rarely do this during the year, so it is a real treat when we get to do it.  What movie did we see:  The Hobbit!!!  We have been counting the days until we could see it.

 We loved it!

 It is a fantastic movie with the classic fight of good against evil.

We loved everything about it, but especially the message that good must work together against overwhelming odds....and that evil will be defeated!

 After the movie we met at the cemetery to light candles and remember loved ones that have passed on.

We miss them!

After the cemetery we headed to Grandma and Grandpa's for our tradition of reading the scriptures and acting out the nativity.

 We found evidence on Grandma's computer that Moms and Dads are in cohorts with Santa..

 and his elves!

 Getting dressed for the nativity...facial hair is a fun dress up!

 Mary and Joseph with baby Jesus.

 The shepherds.

 The wisemen.

 The nativity scene was acted out as Grandpa read from the scriptures.

 We are ready for Christmas!

 But first the kids got to open their Christmas pajamas.

 Our last Christmas with our least for two years!!

 On Christmas Eve pajamas are cool!

We are ready for Christmas if we could just fall asleep!!

Birthday Boy

 My cute hubby has reached the ripe age of 41!

 We had a fun time celebrating with him!

 He got a new smoker from a good, of course, we had to get him some meat to smoke!

 Each of the kids used their own money to buy a few gifts...very thoughtful gifts!

 World's Best Dad!

 These two pooled their money to get Dad a foot massager!

 A new hat is always a must.

 John Wayne movie.

Happy Birthday Dad!  We love you so much!