Monday, December 29, 2008

Yay! - Christmas Post

I have been SOOO lazy this week it is horrible, but wonderful at the same time. I didn't even have the interest in telling you about Christmas. But....Landon and Sarah are coming to spend a couple of days with us tomorrow, so lazy days are over and it is time to get this house in order. Now that I am up and about again, I feel I should do my blog.

We had a very nice, very relaxing Christmas. We were very happy to be in our home with our family, but I did realize some problems with it. When you have company over you put much more effort in to the festivities. We were very laid back and unorganized but it all came together in the end.

Here are the few pictures we took.

The Shepherds
The wisemen (and yes that is a toy worm as baby Jesus, Brandon stole the doll I had right when we were about to start and I had no idea where he put it.)
Mismatched Brandon. It was 80 degrees here on Christmas Eve. He would have been sweating in his santa suit.
Steve at the piano for our Christmas songs.
The Christmas Eve presents:

Presents from Santa:

{Steven got a bug vacuum}

{Nathan with his moon shoes that he doesn't seem to like}

What a Merry Christmas, and now on to the Happy New Year (without fireworks!, oh well)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Scripture humor

We have started a habit in our home that has stuck pretty good over the past couple of months. We have scripture study every night where we each read a couple of versus and then Steve and I explain them to the boys. We just read one page a night. We are already to the Isaiah chapters in 2nd Nephi and are determined to get through them. I never realized that teaching scriptures to kids could be a funny thing. Here is the humor.

1. Steven and his class were studying Native American Indians shortly after we started reading as a family. We had explained to him that the Lamanites were what we consider the American Indians. So, apparently in his class one day he raised his hand and explained that there was a group of indians called the Lamanites. I asked him what his teacher said about that and of course she had never heard of them. haha
2. The other day I was talking to Jacob and he was asking me about something dying. It wasn't a morbid conversation just a four year old conversation. He said something along the lines of..."If a cat eats this candy bar will it perish?" At first I had no idea where he got such a word, and then realized that he has been listening in scripture study.
3. This is not about scriptures, but a sacrament issue. We were in Sacrament Meeting and they were passing around the water. When I passed the water to Jacob, he said "No Thanks", I looked at him a little surprised and said "take some!" He said in a little angrier voice, "No Thanks, I am not thirsty!" That is when Dad got involved and made Jacob take the water. We definitely need to have a lesson on the sacrament.

In other news....Santa Clause visited our house this evening. His suit seems to be getting a little tight around the leg area, but it should get another showing on Christmas Eve.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Next Day graham cracker houses

Here are our finished products on the graham cracker houses.


Now let me explain a little something..... I had somewhere I needed to go last night, so I left my very capable husband in charge of helping the boys put the candy on these houses. I gave him the 8 bags of different candy to use so the boys would have a variety of things to put on. For some reason of which I have not understood, Steve decided to only get two (of the eight) bags of candy out. So the boys had their choice of jelly bellys or mini marshmallows. When I got home I was very surprised by the lack of variation on the candy and even more upset to see NO CHOCOLATE on them. I still managed to tell the boys they looked nice, but am planning on being home next year for the decorating. :-) Now I have all the extra candy to use on candy trains at preschool/playgroup tomorrow.

Unused chocolate bells and presents.

Another quick story from tonight. Steven lost his tooth today and put it in this German tooth box we have and under his pillow.
When the toothfairy went in tonight to give him his treasure this is what he/she found.

And this is his/her response.
So funny. As far as the eye patch goes, you remember how Steven loves accessories? Well, I found a black eye mask when I was going through our Utah stuff and Steven decided he wanted it. He has worn it every night for a month.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Time for Christmas

Yes, we are celebrating Christmas at our house this year, even if our blog is stuck on Thanksgiving. Not only are we celebrating it, I am a little ahead of the game which is nice.

I must admit, for the first time since I left, I am missing Germany. Christmas had a lot to offer in Germany including the correct temperature. We are in the 70's this week, and might hit 80 degrees on Wednesday. Crazy. Steven commented that maybe Santa doesn't need all those heavy red clothes this year. :-)

Anyway here are some of our festivities.

We were lucky enough to find a cut-your-own-tree field here in Statesboro. When we got there the man took the boys on a ride in this sleigh that was hooked up to his ride on lawn mower. Sadly my camera batteries died right after I took this picture. But we got the tree and headed home.

We decorated it the next day and are very happy with the chaotic look of it. It looks completely different now by the way, because I keep buying garland, or finding more ornaments, or thinking of other fun things to put on it.

Tonight we thought it would be fun to do gingerbread houses. I bought a kit for Steve to use because we were curious how they looked. I think it looks great, but surprisingly similar to many other pictures I have seen on blogs.

The boys attempted the graham cracker houses and they were fun, but could be a little frustrating. The graham crackers seem to have a mind of their own. I told the boys lets get the house together and then we can put candy and stuff on tomorrow once the "glue" has dried. So that is the plan and now we have extended this fun activity for two days. I will show you how they turn out tomorrow.

We are doing advent of course this year. I have my German advent garland up with lots of candy in it. The boys are excited every night when we count off one more day. When the garland starts to sag you know Christmas is getting close. :-)

I am excited for Christmas and the New Year!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, even if I didn't take very many pictures. Oops.

The boys had the whole week off of school, so we went on a nature walk near our house one day. It turned out to be a nature walk up someone's driveway, because at the end of this trail that was about 2 blocks long was a house and that was it. We were gathering leaves to make turkeys that you can kind of see on the wall in the other pictures on this post.
Brandon on the table at the park in his doggy sweater.
Our brother-in-law Charlie came and stayed with us with his two kids Daniel and Emma. They got here Wednesday afternoon and stayed until Sunday. We had a Wonderful time with them and we even got out the Settler's game again for the first time since we got to the states! We also discovered that our house was very comfortable even with 3 extra people. Not the extra room we had in Germany, but it wasn't as bad here as I thought it might be so I am happy. You are all invited to come visit Brooklet now if you have under 4 people with you. :0

So our Thanksgiving was wonderful for a couple different reasons.
1. We had great company. Charlie, and the kids and then we had a friend of Steve's from work named Ian come over with his family. They have two older boys and then they just had a baby boy about a month ago. I totally loved having the baby in the house. I didn't hold him as much as I thought I would, but when I did hold him, I really enjoyed it.
2. We split the Thanksgiving list with Ian's family. So we only had half the mess and half the clean up, but all the delicious food. It worked out perfectly. So perfectly in fact, that my kitchen was mostly clean when we ate.
3. All the food was delicious.
4. We ended the night with a game of Settler's which I won!

This is the kids table(s).
Here are the guys at the adult table all sitting on the bench. I don't know how they all ended up here together, but they look cozy don't they? This is Steve, Charlie, and Daniel. (notice the brownish turkeys on the wall. Those are made of crushed leaves. The other decor came from Nathan's kindergarten class.)
On Friday I did go and brave the crowds at Walmart at 6am, but didn't have much to buy. It was still nice to be out shopping with the rest of the world before the sun came up. And I saw the same thing as Laura did out in California. 90% of the people there had a big screen tv or some other big ticket item in their buggy. Where do these people get their money??

Saturday was my niece Emma's 8th birthday. To start the day off I made chocolate IHOP pancakes that were SOOO good. From that experience I woke up to the fact that my kids have a much higher sugar tolerance than other kids. Daniel and Emma made it through about half of their pancake, while all my boys ate every last drop. What am I doing to these kids?

After breakfast and a movie we went to Chuck E Cheese for the kids to play and we had a great time. Then we came home for cake and presents. I think it was a good birthday for Emma and I am happy she got to spend it here with us.

Now the kids are back in school and I am working on boxes in the garage. I was just telling Steve I need to get out the Christmas stuff before we miss too many days of advent. That is next on my list. :)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The campout

As I mentioned in my last post, Steve told the boys that if Nathan got 4 out of 5 stars on his behavior paper this week, Steve would take them all camping in the backyard. Well............
The funniest thing to me was that Steve and I were watching the weather report all week hoping that the low of 24 degrees they were calling for that night would somehow come up 20 degrees. But that did not happen. haha

We started the evening by having hobo's. A cute name for foil dinners that Steve and Steven learned at a boy scout camp they went to last week.
That was quite an interesting experience. Steve saw these scout men do these dinners last week, so he was all ready to show us how it was done and be the master. Unfortunately for him I have had foil dinners many times back in my camping days, so I had a lot of opinions on the matter. Steve takes the dinners out to the fire and throws them on the FLAMES! I just had to voice my opinion over and over about not putting them on flames, they are suppose to go on coals. Especially when I saw that the fire was starting to burn holes in the foil. I finally went inside to do dishes because Steve didn't want to hear my opinion. :-) So he brings the dinners in a short time later, and they were perfect! How does he do that? I have no idea, but I for one was shocked.

The boys and Steve set up their tents and brought ALL the blankets from the house out to the backyard. Which actually is a lot of blankets since we have opened our blanket boxes from the garage. Then they went to bed. The only one who came in to sleep was Steven. He got up to go to the bathroom at 12am and I think when he went back out he just couldn't get warm again. Steve said there was frost on top of their blankets when they woke up. It was COLD out there. But they all had a great time and Nathan got his reward for being good. I am sure they will do it again, but probably not until May. :-)

Brandon on the the other hand, has a funny story to tell this week. His face has been really dry since the winter began, so I have been putting lotion on it a couple times a day. He always likes to help me and is very thorough on getting it on his checks. Well, the other day after dinner, the sour cream was sitting on the counter(the boys cleared the table) and he reached up and got it. (A new bad habit of his) Steve walked in the kitchen to find this. Apparently he thought it was facial cream and was making sure not to miss any spots.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Too much stuff

You know how I was complaining about this house being a little too small and not having any storage space? Well, that problem just got a lot more complicated. When we moved to Germany our stuff was put into a storage unit in Utah since the company did not move us there. It has sat there for over four years and was just delivered to our house about a week ago. Luckily we had Alicia and Scott there to take care of things in Utah, so we didn't have to fly out.

So, now our stuff is all in one spot and we have WAY to much of it. We have replaced 90% of what we had in Utah. We did not expect to get a job that would move us back to the states from Germany so we thought we would be using our old stuff again, but tis not so. Now we have the dreadful task of going through all 50 boxes and figuring out what goes where. You better believe we will have the biggest garage sale in town when we are done. And I will be counting the days until I can use the garage for my car again.

On a good note it has been a lot of fun finding some things that I had forgotten about. I found the quilt Gma Allred made us for our wedding and it is now proudly displayed on our bed.
We found the crockpot and it served us well for dinner on Sunday. I even found the infamous jeans Steve wore on our first date. They are a size 32 waste and even though neither of us could fit in to them I really hate to part with them. :-)

In other fun news, Steve and I have decided since we now have a big backyard, and the right to do so, we are going to have a firepit. We actually bought this stainless steel raised firepit so we wouldn't have to dig a whole in the ground and it can be moved very easily. We had family home evening outside tonight where I read a story from the Friend about being a hard worker and serving others like the pioneers and the indians. Then we roasted marshmallows on hangers and had s'mores. It was great and we hope to have many good times with our firepit. Steve has told Nathan that if he gets good marks on his obedience at least 4 days this week, he will take the boys camping in the backyard on Friday. I really hope Nathan is successful, because I don't want to deal with the tantrum if he is not.