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Friday, January 20, 2012

Thankful Tree

I follow the Jones Design Company blog {as does half of the blogger population I believe} and loved her thankfulness post & free printable found here. I didn't waste anytime before I had hubs in the wooded area behind our house cutting the perfect branches for us to create our own thankful tree for the month of November. The kids were 100% on board and loved filling out there cards each day. I thought I had taken pictures of our recreation, but alas I can't locate them so maybe I just remember taking them with my mental camera. November came and went and the thankful tree remained. I had every intention of the kids hanging their beanie baby ornaments from the branches at Christmas but I was vetoed by the other members in the house. December came and went and still the thankful tree stood proud. The hubs and kids loved having it there so I left it alone. That is until recently.  It was time, so we bid the thankful tree good bye.
These are a few of the things the kids were thankful for this year. I love how you get a true sense of their age and maturity level based on the items they listed. 

Mema feeling better
My toys (specifically his hour glass)
Our baby (McKenna)
My sister (Gabrielle)
GG's visit (Grandma Hicks)
Quila (our family dog)
My buddies
Family movie nights

Our home
My family
The world
The cross

This was a wonderful exercise that took only a moment each day but that moment caused the kids to stop and reflect on how blessed a life we live. We will definitely bring the thankful tree back in seasons to come. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Smurfette Pays a Visit

Who remembers the cartoon series the Smurfs?
If you don't, well you missed out!
I loved the Smurfs however not enough that I recall inviting Smurfette to pay our house a personal visit. But alas, she showed up on Sunday. This is what she looks like in real life.
An adorable jammie clad ONE YEAR OLD who stumbled upon her siblings afternoon craft project which was oh so enticing to her wee little hands and welllllll apparently her mouth too. 
When this little mishap was discovered McKenna looked like this and by the looks of her I am sure your imagination can only presume what our carpet looked like. I might add that we just had our carpets cleaned exactly one month ago. If money was no object I would have had them back out first thing Monday morning recleaning. Thanks to Google and an entire can of WD40 coupled with lots of elbow grease & steaming hot water the stains have "disappeared" for the most part. So have ALL the ink pads and stampers. Bum deal as far as lessons go with the siblings. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Tardy Christmas Post

I just uploaded and viewed our Christmas pictures and I'm pretty sure I shed a tear or two. OK, not really but I am biting my lip at the less than stellar pictures from our Christmas morning. Kiddos, please know Christmas morning did indeed happen. I just don't have any decent pictures to prove it. Please forgive me. I'm sharing photos taken at Uncle Brett & Aunt Linda's from Friday night.
Gabi, I love your look of excitement as you opened your beloved Kanani American Girl doll.
You had wanted her since you spotted her in the display window at the mall. What girl wouldn't love her long, beautiful locks of hair? I truly wish we would have had you video taped while opening her. It was beyond cute! I think you had a pretty good idea what you were opening because you kept squealing "I hope it's Kanani, I hope it's Kanani. IT'S KANANI!!!!!"
Dawson, Papa and Mema added to your small but growing Lego collection. Playing with and building Lego's is your very favorite thing to do when you have one on one time with Daddy.
Sweet baby girl, you received your first baby doll made by Manhattan toy company named baby Stella doll Peach. You looked at her with admiration as Daddy took her out of the packaging and immediately cradled her in your arms. You like that she has a magnetic pacifier. I like that she is soft and completely washable.
And I had to throw this one in because you two are absolutely beautiful! Gabrielle, you and Paige had a long conversation about her American Girl doll collection and how she has all those things tucked away for when she has a little girl (Paige wants to name her Charlie) of her own. You can't wait to have a special date with Paigie to pull it all out of storage and spend hours playing with it all.
This picture was taken Christmas morning. Gabi, once again you were too cute with your words. You looked over the banister and shouted "Santa came! We made the nice list and the naughty list too. Santa brought us gifts but must have put coal in our stockings since we've been kind of naughty." You said this because as you can see your stockings are life size and they appeared "flat" (as you said) from upstairs so you assumed they were empty. 
I have decided to record what each of you got from here on out since I can't seem to remember from year to year. You each received three gifts + small stocking stuffers.
Pottery Barn bunk beds for Kate & Kanani 
Praline & book (an AG kitten pet)
Your 1st "real" Bible
Imaginext Dragon Fortress
Razor scooter
Star Wars light saber
Melissa & Doug nesting and stacking blocks
Fisher Price Countin' Fun Piggy
B. Toys Alphaberry (today's baby Blackberry) 

You woke to your "big" gifts in front of the fireplace. Once the excitement had settled a bit you dove into your stockings before breakfast then it was off to church. Daddy & I couldn't believe how content you were when we arrived home because WE had to ask YOU in the early afternoon if you were ready to open the presents under the tree. You were so patient to take turns opening and admiring each others gifts. Terry & Barb sent special gifts for each of you which added to the fun and we saved your gifts from GG to open on Christmas morning as well. You munchkins are blessed to be so loved! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Sweet Shoppe Seventh Birthday Party

As I mentioned in the previous post we hosted a sweet shoppe birthday party for Ms. G in our home on Sunday.
I've recently made friends with my sewing machine (after setting out to not break the bank in fashioning some clothes for Gabi's American Girl dolls) so when I saw these sewn ruffled streamers online I knew I could whip them up with ease. So can you. Easy!
Keeping with the streamer or banner theme I hand stitched some hearts from paint chip samples and strung them from the mantel. This will double as a small Valentine decor.
The take home gifts which held two fingernail polishes, a lip gloss & a glitter emery board.
I'm loving chevron right now so I printed and glued cupcake wrappers and toppers to add to the cupcakes.
Gabrielle picked out the sweets spread which consisted of: milk duds, whoppers, jelly beans, starbursts, skittles & twizzlers. It is safe to say that I sent the girls home on a sugar overload!
I appreciated the simplicity of her party this year. Small. At home. Easy preparation & clean up.
How is it possible that SEVEN years have come and gone since our feisty gal was born? I'm still trying to wrap my brain around this question.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Gabrielle turns 7!

Sunday was the 1st day of the New Year, but more importantly it was Gabrielle's 7th birthday. The day was spent in celebration of her. In her own words "Birthday girl. Birthday rules" which translated to cinnamon rolls, sugar cereal & chocolate milk for breakfast; cheese pizza and orange soda for lunch; a sweet treats birthday party in the afternoon (more on that next post); family gift opening and an evening of fun on her new Nintendo 3DS handheld gaming system.
Gabrielle Annique, 
Mommy has done a little online research and quite a bit of reading/studying on firstborn children. 
First born: a natural leader, reliable, conscientious, perfectionist, strong willed aggressive, a people pleaser and generally has a strong need for approval.
You are all of that packaged into one petite, beautiful young lady.
You are also silly, smart, a fantastic reader, compassionate & determined.
You have always been and will continue to be a girlie girl with boyish tendencies. You love rough housing and getting your hands dirty. You enjoy fishing and swimming in the lake. You'll sit and watch gun shows, UFC, football, MythBusters and similar shows with your Daddy with interest and yet you love dressing up, wearing jewelry and lipstick, tights and boots.
You thrive on words of encouragement.
I'd say your love language teeters between physical touch & words of affirmation.
We can't believe it has been 7 years since you made us a family! In the new year we pray you will work on your patience, continue working on having an attitude of gratitude, remember that your siblings truly are your friends for life & continue hiding God's word in your heart through your Sunday school lessons and weekly Awana readings.
We love you to the heavens and back!