Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Christmas Day

Christmas Day 2016
Coming down the stairs bright and early (7 a.m.) Christmas morning.

Mr J's big present--a new bike!

Miss O was very excited about her Ukulele

And what do you get a college student who travels?  Luggage :) exciting stuff!

Sibling gifts--always every one's favorite!

And Grandpa T's gifts are always the best too!

Who doesn't love a whole box of sharpies??? 

And all ready for church Christmas morning.

After church the kids had a song they had been working on for Ben for Christmas "Do you Hear what I hear."  They did awesome!

And Christmas Day in the evening--what a wonderful and blessed day!  We are just happy we are together!  That is the best present!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

2016 Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve is one of my favorite times.  Ours is full of family, friends, music and lots and lots of yummy food!  This years was no exception.  Good times!
The kids always do a big musical number for Christmas Eve.  It was so fun to hear them practicing!  Don't you love how they use the tree for their music stand?

Lots of food and friends!

And lots of music!

And the grand finale of music--Miss A on piano, Miss E on trombone at top of the stairs, Mr J on saxophone, Miss O on mellophone and our 3 friends on violins playing "Angels we have heard on high."  It was awesome!

Then we have our Nativity play---Mary and Joseph this year 

The angel of the Lord speaking to the shepherds.

The Three Wisemen presenting gifts to the baby.

And our traditional new PJ's on Christmas Eve.  All ready to go to bed and hope Santa comes!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

2016 Blue Jeans week 51

It was the week before Christmas and all through the house everyone was stirring except for Miss A who just got her wisdom teeth out :)  It was a good week, but Miss A did start out Monday morning getting all 4 wisdom teeth out.  Thankfully she was able to eat pretty much whatever she wanted by her birthday and Christmas.  Yeah!  We are glad that is done and she will be fine when she heads back to school next week.  Ugh.  Time flies when you are having fun.  Here is a look at our week. . .
Love walking and talking with these kids.  We had a nice day so we got out on the trails and walked. 

Making gingerbread  cookies is a must in December at our house.  One of our favorite traditions.

and the kids made some pretty impressive cookies!

Under all those is Miss A after she got her wisdom teeth out on Monday.  She was here for a few days and then got to feeling much better!  Thankfully!

We finally got Miss O's room all done with new bedding and such so had to get a picture.  

We had a little bit of snow---enough to build a few snowmen with some cute friends before it all melted away!

Miss E wanted to bake a cake today and decorate it all fancy just for fun.  Lucky us!

And this little boy is so very happy to have his oldest sister home!  And she is feeling better now to want to jump on the trampoline.  That is good!

And finally a very happy birthday to Miss A!!!!  We are so happy to have her home with us to celebrate!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

2016 Daily December 25--Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas with love from our family to yours!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

2016 Daily December 24--Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve is one of my absolute favorite times of the year!  We do the same things each year and we love it! (these are last year's photos)
We eat lots of yummy food--lots!

We sing lots of songs and have lots of awesome music by very talented kiddos!  We have our own orchestra almost!

We have lots of friends and family here that we love!

And we always re-enact the Nativity story--bathrobes, towels and all

Wise men and gifts too!  Love it!

Have a blessed Christmas Eve and a Merry Christmas!!!

Friday, December 23, 2016

2016 Daily December 23--gingerbread cookies

Gingerbread cookies are another Christmas tradition we have.  We love to make them and especially eat them.  I have this Gingerbread cookies recipe from none other than Mel's Kitchen Cafe--of course.  We use it every year.  It does take a little bit of advanced planning since you do have to either chill the dough in the fridge or freezer, but it is worth it.  Soft, chewy perfect Gingerbread cookies every time.
So many helpers in the kitchen--I promise there are gingerbread cookies in there somewhere. . .

Everyone likes to help cut them and roll them out.  Roll them out thick and do not overbake is very important!!!

We normally are gingerbread cookie purists and don't put anything on them and just eat them plain, but this year I saw this icing at Wal-mart and thought we would try it.  All 3 came together.  You microwave it, and it comes out  so smooth.  The kids really liked using it.  The taste isn't the best as compared with homemade frosting, but it was still fun and nice you could just use the bottles it came in and not have to get frosting bags and tips out.  

The results were pretty cool looking!  The kids like it a lot.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

2016 Daily December 22--eggnog French toast

My family loves eggnog, and we enjoy it all December long--the non-alcoholic kind :)  I found this recipe for eggnog French toast a few years ago, and we have enjoyed it every December since.  I find it works best if you just put all the ingredients in the blender to mix them up.  Then you don't get any egg pieces in your French toast which I do not like.  Enjoy!

Eggnog French Toast

8 eggs
3/4 cup eggnog
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 loaf Texas Toast

Mix eggs, eggnog, brown sugar and cinnamon in a blender until smooth.  Pour into a shallow dish.  Dip each piece of toast in the mix and let is soak up a little on each side.  Transfer to a hot griddle and cook both sides until golden brown.  Top with butter, syrup, peanut butter, powdered sugar, jam or whatever your family likes on French toast.  We also just like them plain.


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

2016 Daily December 21--ugly Christmas sweaters

So this year was the year of the ugly Christmas sweaters at our house.  Ben needed to have one for work, and for our church Christmas party you were supposed to wear one, so we decided to make our own.  I went to a thrift store and got about 9 sweaters for $1, so you couldn't beat the price!  Then I just picked up some decor things at Wal-mart.  This is what we came up with. . . 
This is my sweater.  I must freely admit that I did not make it, though.  Miss O made mine for me because I just never got around to doing it, but I LOVE what she did!

This is Ben's which I must say was pretty awesome!  He even sewed jingle bells on the bottom so you knew snowmen Superman and Batman were coming.  Needless to say his co-workers were very impressed when he wore this to work!!!  

This is Miss E's which I was so impressed with her Santa sleigh and reindeer.  She just cute those out of felt freehand.  One of Ben's co-workers didn't have an ugly sweater to wear, so I offered one of our extras.  He chose to wear Miss E's and it was a big hit.

This is Miss O's.  Love her earth!

This was Mr J's very ugly sweater :)  Loved his Christmas tree.  Next year we need to get a strand of battery operated lights to put in it.

And this was Miss A's.  She did not make this one, but Ben made it for her since she was going and was just getting home right before the party so she wouldn't have time to make one.  He figured she could wear it next Christmas on campus and fit right in :)  

And here we all are--ugly Christmas sweaters and all!  

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

2016 Daily December 20--Blue Jeans Week 50

And everyone is home for Christmas!!!!  Yeah!  That is the best Christmas present I could ask for.  I don't need anything under the tree, thanks.  I am good :)  Despite ugly weather and plane delays all along the way (what would we do without cell phones??  so grateful) and ugly freezing rain while making the 2 hour drive home from the airport that took us 3 hours... we are all home safe and sound and enjoying the season!  I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed Christmas!!!  Here is a look at our week. . .
One of my favorite things about Christmas is the nightly reading of a Christmas book to the kids by Ben.  Priceless, and they still all enjoy it even at 16 and 14 and 11!

How do younger brothers and friends entertain themselves at their older siblings basketball games?  Tic-tac-toe :)

Mr J had his first ever band concert this week--playing the saxophone.  Sounded pretty good!

These girls did some good and rang the bell on an extremely cold day for the Salvation Army.  Good job girls!

And they are home!  Finally!  Sure love these two and have missed them tons!!!

And here are our ugly Christmas sweaters that we all made :)  Pretty impressive if I do say so myself :)  Will show you close-ups of each one tomorrow so come back and see 

And we had our church Christmas party this week which was why we made the ugly Christmas sweaters--that and Ben had to wear one to work one day this week for Ugly Christmas sweater day at work :)  They had cute photo booth things at the church Christmas party that my kids enjoyed with some of their favorite people at church.

Merry Christmas!  Thanks for visiting and have a blessed holiday!!