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Friday, December 24, 2010

Born to be Our Friend


"...Truly He taught us to love one another
His law is love and His gospel is Peace.
Chains shall He break for The Slave is Our Brother
and in His Name all oppression shall cease.
The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger
in all our trials, born to be Our Friend.
He Knows our Need,
to our weakness is No Stranger.
Behold, Your King!
Before Him lowly bend..."


I have thought many times of this verse of my favorite Christmas song, Oh Holy Night, this season. I am so grateful to know that our Savior was born in a stable and placed in a manger on that First Christmas night. And even moreso to know that He really does know our needs and our weaknesses- I need that knowledge right now. We wish everyone a Merry Christmas- hopefully it will meet your expectations whatever they may be! 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Kids ARE the Magic of Christmas

Lots of childlike things have been going on in our world through this Christmas month... a couple of weeks ago, Cooper had fun coloring and stamping a letter to Santa. I dictated as he told me what to write, which was mainly letting Santa know how much he likes birds and frogs and snakes. :) I think somewhere in there he mentioned what he wanted for Christmas... When I told him we would need to get a stamp for the letter from Dad, he said, "Oh, wait, I have stamps!" and excitedly went to his desk and dug out a small orange stamp that Grammie had sent for Halloween! So Santa was sent the adorable letter with a skull and crossbones in the upper right corner...

 Ry did his part by dipping his hand in an inkpad...

And just a short week of so later, Coop was the oh so excited recipient of a response from Mr. Claus himself! Look at the sparkle in his eyes- magic :)


The boys also got to meet Santa in person this year at our Ward Christmas party... When Cooper got up on his lap all he ended up saying was "I want a Christmas." :) And Ryder took a few steps up to them, but didn't actually make it onto his lap- so cute!


Ya know, I admit that I've not been so much a Santa fan and he is certainly not my favorite concept behind Christmas, but this year, with Cooper being at the perfect age for it all, I confess that Santa has been a significant part of the energy of Christmastime for us. I know that he really enjoys the story of the birth of Jesus and knows it well. I know that he knows that that is why we celebrate Christmas. And I also know that Santa Claus is helping him to feel the thrill of the holiday season too. Indeed...



Between my brother's wedding, my newborn niece (whom I am hating that I have yet to meet!) and my youngest sister's homecoming from BYU-Hawaii this last semester, the annual candy making day with my Mom and sisters was put on hold until next year. Pretty good reasons! So, Monica and I got together at her house to do some kid-friendly candy making on the fly. Coop loved dipping the marshmellows in choclolate and then hot chocolate powder! Suprising, but these little treats turned out so yummy!



Stephen and I really enjoy hosting parties and generally plan one for Christmas, but this year instead of throwing an event for our adult friends and families, we helped Cooper have his own little playdate party! He helped in most every step, from the invites...
 ...to making cupcakes so his little friends could gather around and make a moderate mess of frosting and sprinkles! They were all so adorable- this really was a fun event for him and me! Nothing fancy- just a really simple little party that the kids all loved!

Hopefully the childishness of Christmas is finding it's way into your home right now too... :)
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Sunday, December 12, 2010

White Pre-Christmas

I daresay this is the first year (of my adult life at least) that I can say I've been sledding before Christmas- usually all the snow fun happens in January or February it seems. But this year it's more like white Thanksgiving than white Christmas I suppose! Our snow is very nearly gone now. But a couple of weekends ago we ventured back into the South Hills and took the kids sledding! (we've vowed to spend more time in this backyard playground of ours this winter!)

 The hike back up the hill made me think of how easy my parents made it for us as I was growing up- they always carted us back up on the snowmobiles! No doubt they would have thought this hill was "cityfied"- we weren't the only ones there! ;)



Taron hit the hill like he belonged there- on his snowboard and for some sweet sled jumps! Keaton played in the snow and tormented Taron with it every chance he got, of course! :) Trying to keep a toddler from rolling himself down the hillside kept me from being a very good sports photographer unfortunately... Cooper didn't really care for the downhill sledding- both the little boys will still take being pulled for a ride rather than blazing the mountain :) So we pulled them around at the bottom- do you think Ry is comfy or begging to get off!? :) Pretty sure Coop was ready for him to get off at least! They were the cutest thing ever...


 We had ourselves a winter tailgate with hot chocolate and gingersnaps before we left. Ryder got a little bit of plain milk in a cup instead... and quickly splashed it across himself! And anyone with any sweet tips on keeping little kids gloves on... do share. We attached both of his with duck tape and still one slipped off! :)



 Later in the week Coop helped me build our very own Frosty in the front yard. The snow was perfect for packing but even by the end of the day Frosty looked pretty sick with his eyes all sunk in... southern Idaho weather was already starting to melt him away!


No doubt more snow will come and Christmas will be here with or without the white... it's just giving me some time to take care of those buried leaf piles I had mentioned... ;)

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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Decking the Halls

For the first time in Stephen and I's married life, we ventured into the hills to cut down a Christmas tree! We tagged along with our great friends the Gardners and braved the roads into the South Hills near our house. We got the cutest, country style tree! It was so cold that we didn't spend as much time playing in the snow as we'd have liked, but it was a great memory nonetheless!


The last day of November (just a few days ago) the boys had fun eating the candy/ helping Mom fill our advent calenders! I also put a little activity in the bigger one that I do with them each day! I am so excited to be able to be home to share the holiday season with my kids! I love, love, love this time of the year! Hope it's off to a good start for all of you too :)


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