Thursday, January 5, 2017

The sound of an angel.


I cannot get over how cute her little laugh is...this is what heaven must sound like.

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Whelp I have been slacking for sure on getting pictures up here.  Here are some highlights of our happenings over the holiday season.

This little man turned 2!!!  What a sheer delight this guy is, here is his Thomas the Train cake.

These two get to hang out quite a bit while Austin is in school.

Speaking of Austin and school, she was assigned the ocean life for a diorama project.  Which is a great story.  She told me that her project was due at the end of the year before she went on break but then failed to tell me that she actually had heard an update in which the project was actually due on Monday rather than Friday.  So when I dropped them off at school Monday morning and everyone was dragging their projects in, I turned and looked at Austin asking if it was in fact due today.  Long story short, her and I did it that night and she turned it in the next day for no credit (I was proud of the teacher for not giving in on this one).  I desperately want to teach our children to accept blame and take credit, it was your project, your deadline and your mistake for turning it in late...which is why I was glad the teacher allowed her to present it but not give her any of the extra credit the other kids got.

This little face just lights up my heart.  She is nearly crawling and does this fish flutter kick thing that is adorable.

They have such a special relationship, perhaps because they are both the "littles" or maybe because they are so close in age.



We decided to hang ornaments on a tree outside for our Christmas pictures...which the snow ended up covering up.

Hanging out at Austin's class party.


Decorating cookies, look at all the helpers I have?!?!

Taking the toys down to the toy drive - there are 4 kiddos smashed in there somewhere.


Our living room after Christmas right before the kids bedtime.

Took a walk around the neighborhood to burn off some of Jackson's energy.

The cool track set that Tadd and Carri got for Jackson.

Paint your own piggy banks.

Garlic and herb humus - yes please according to Hunter.

Look Mom I can peel my own oranges. :-)

Nate allowed for his year long beard to be shaved for proceeds to go to TESSA and the toy drive.


The kids inspecting the toys before I packed them up.

I love our Christmas village!!!! Someday we will be able to have it down closer to the ground but for now with little ones this keeps it nice and safe.

We let the kids sleep in the playroom Christmas Eve with their own Christmas tree.


There's Nate's face.


We camped out at Tadd and Carri's place for New Year's Eve and then celebrated Christmas with them the next morning.

And two pictures that didn't get chosen for the Christmas card but still turned out super cute!




Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Finishing it off...

November 28 - Today I am thankful for health...while I am sure any part of our lives can be viewed as a challenge pretty much anytime, I am thankful that we are healthy as a family.  We have had several friends lately with health issues and it will always make me appreciate what we have and don't have. :-)

November 29 - Fancy lunches - we went downtown today for lunch at The Famous.  It's a very nice restaurant and for lunch the meals are quite reasonable, we were able to enjoy ourselves with Tadd, my Mom and Marmee and Popa.  What a treat and a great thing to be thankful for.

November 30 - I've got to finish off my thankful November with a warm thank you to my family both immediate and extended.  I know the business and me looking for a job has put a lot of stress on our family and yet at the end of the day we have grown and hopefully will be better people for it.  I can't wait to see what December has in store for us, and no matter the adventure I am sure we will tackle it.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Holy smokes...

Holy smokes am I behind on the thankful updates!

November 21 - Fall break, I am so thankful for the breaks in the school year so we can all hang out as a family.  I love having everyone at home and school has definitely made me appreciate this more.

November 22 - Today I am thankful for airplanes, Carole and Murph flew in today and I cannot imagine how much different our lives would be if we couldn't just hop on a plane and visit each other in two short hours.  Of course that's not to say that the entire day is not consumed with travel and what not, but it's still pretty well perfect that they can come out.

November 23 - Date night~ish.  I am thankful for the folks keeping all of the kiddos at home while Joe and I ventured out to our friends house who was throwing a friends-thanksgiving get-together and then stopped by and had a drink just the two of us.  It was awesome and full of laughter as always, and the people that we were visiting are always in such great moods and we have such wonderful conversations.

November 24 - THANKSGIVING!!!!! My absolute favorite holiday!  I love Thanksgiving and this year was even more spectacular since my kiddos got to be with both sets of their grandparents...talk about a wonderful and thankful time!

November 25 -  Instead of participating in Black Friday, Joe shut down the shop for the day and we stayed home and made some smoked pork green chili, we tried to tame it down as much as possible but it still turned out pretty darn hot.  It was so much fun to have Marmee and Popa in town to watch the smoking process and play with the kiddos.

November 26 - Today I am thankful for Shop Small Saturday.  We ventured out to Manitou Springs to eat at The Keg and go Christmas ornament shopping as we do every year, only this time we accompanied by my parents, Carole, Murph and J's Mom Linda.  The kids had a blast and picked out some really cute ornaments.

November 27 - Sunday Sunday Funday!  We all hung out and made a big meal (almost like a second Thanksgiving one) and then watched the Broncos just barely get beat by the Chiefs.  I love hosting and am thankful to have people to host. :-D


I made the center piece again for my Mom's house and couldn't help but make one for our home too.

This little rascal likes to roll over to the DVD shelves and tear them apart.

Isn't that a cute turkey on that pumpkin pie?!?!

Down in Manitou there is an old penny arcade, one complete with these type of rides everywhere.  Jackson was in absolute heaven.


Austin is just about too big to ride on these (which is crazy to think about) - where has time gone?

Monday, November 21, 2016

The weekend

November 19 - Romantic comedies...well and Joe's willingness to sit through them on occasion.  I know they are predictable and I like action just as much as the next person but we watched a RomCom the other night and laughed so hard and it seems as though they always have happy endings.  I like that.  I can read the news to get the truly terrible endings but at the end of a day I would like to watch a warm fuzzy movie.

November 20 - Summer's birthday, boy is it fun to raise kids with Tadd around.  We celebrated Summer's birthday on Sunday, I just can't get over how old we are now.  We are responsible for little people.  Crazy to think about!

The little birthday girl herself!  See how red my face is?!?!?!  Carrying around kids and hanging out in a pizza place is apparently too hot for Crystal.


Friday, November 18, 2016

Catching up...

November 12 - I am thankful for my Kitchen Aid mixer, Joe got me one for my birthday and I haven't let the thing take a break yet.  I am baking and mixing up a storm and having so much fun doing it.

November 13 - Football parties, boy have these things changed over the years.  We went over to Tadd's house on Sunday to watch the games and there were as many kiddos as adults there.  They are still just as fun as ever, but a completely different dynamic.

November 14 - Family game time, we actually ended up playing games after the football party on Sunday but I figured that I could use it as my thankful on Monday also.  I love that the girls are starting to get that there is an actual strategy to games.  And it also happens to be Carri's birthday so we ran flowers and a cupcake over to wish her Happy Birthday.

November 15 - Meeting up for lunches, my Mom, Carri and the kiddos and I all try and meet up once a week for lunch.  Lately we have been going to Jason's Deli because they have a fabulous salad bar.  I love getting the cousins together once a week like that even if it's short and we are always missing Austin.

November 16 - Naked Wines, I am part of a wine club that basically buys the entire batch of wine from the wine makers ahead of time so they can afford to make it as smaller wineries and then sells the wines to us in the club.  I have yet to have a bad bottle of wine and since I am not good enough at picking wines on my own this gives me a great sampling of a lot of different kinds.

November 17 - Snow, glorious snow!  We had our first snow storm last night and while it wasn't much an inch or so, it sure made everything beautiful this morning.  Of course it's supposed to warm up again this weekend so Winter won't be around too long, but we'll take what we can get.  And also Little Miss Summer's birthday is today...so we ran over some balloons since the party isn't until this weekend but we wanted to see her on her birthday too.  Oh yeah and it was Grandparents day at Austin and Tyler's school so my Mom drove down and we all enjoyed a delicious (not even joking it really was good) turkey dinner at the school.

November 18 - Our backyard.  It is a magical place in every season, full of adventure and mystery. We just got back in from a "hike" around the yard and I loved watching the kids explore the snow.

Jackson must have had a bad dream so when he woke up crying Joe went in to get him so he wouldn't wake up the girls and he fell asleep on the couch with us.  Love sleeping babies!

The girls trying to learn some more strategy while playing Connect Four with Joe.

And then cooking with Dad...do you see that even Jackson get a knife...it was a big day.

All to make this Jagger Schnitzel (basically fried pork) sandwich on my homemade buns.

Anne and Peter sent Jackson his birthday present early since their household is getting ready to expand...just look at the excitement in these pictures.




First trip out in the snow this year...kind of a puny snow storm but we'll take it.

The birthday girl and her balloons!

I know it's blurry but here's Hunter helping to cook too the other day.  She rocks her head back and forth when ever you ask her if she's got her chewy (which is what we call her pacifier).  Hence the blurry head.


Friday, November 11, 2016

And keeping up with the Thanks.

November 10 - I am thankful for my sense of humor. I had an interview with a company yesterday at 2PM, so when Joe got home a little bit early (thank you for that) I decided to head out and be about 20-25 minutes early...you know what they say about those worms?  So as I am driving to the interview listening to music, feeling truly able to conquer the world.  I get a call from my recruiter that asked where I was because my interview actually started at 1PM and I was now 20 minutes late.  Shaking my head.  Turns out that they changed the schedule and I didn't get notified. :-(  So now I get to be super late and apologetic (even though my recruiter took the brunt of it over the phone, it wasn't his face that was sitting in the board room).  I thought about letting it get me down but instead I apologized and then laughed A LOT and made them laugh and honestly thought that I nailed the interview - until I went to bed last night, thought too much about it and looking back can't remember if I answered the technical questions right or not.  Dangit.  Nothing says hire me and pay me too much money like ignorance in your field. LOL

November 11 - My sick kiddos.  I am thankful not that my kiddos are sick but that they need me and I am here.  All four of them have a cold and when I got home from my interview yesterday I could hear the crying through the door, it would be an adjustment if I went into work everyday...I bet there would be times that the cloak of guilt would be nearly too heavy to stand under, but my career and my family need me.  And the things that the kiddos would learn from Joe would be amazing.  But for today - right now - this cold - I am here and able to kiss them and make them soup. ;-)