Saturday, December 31, 2016

New Year's Eve

It's been a whole week since Christmas, seems more like a blink of an eye! It's time to say goodbye to 2016 and welcome in the new year. Billy smoked some chicken legs, I made a couple dips, the kids requested fried cheese sticks and of course, it all added up to too much food again.
 Last year, I made up little lunch bags with times written on them, for the kids to open each hour. They had little activities inside and it helped to pass the hours down til midnight. Well, Taylor really enjoyed it and insisted on doing something similar this year! Honestly, while I thought it was a fun thing to do, after the advent calendar all month long, I was a bit tired of planning activities. So...she decided to do it herself. She wrote a cute note, then placed it in our advent calendar. At 7PM she placed a note in the #7 spot that said: TIME FOR DINNER. YUMMY! I can tell I'm rubbing off on her because that is exactly what I would have written. lol! That's my girl!

8PM spot was to play a board game. We played a LONG game of Aggravation and Billy won...grrr! Then, without even prompting, Blake decided to take a turn and write one for the 9 o'clock spot, his was very thoughtful, it read: WRITE DOWN THE BEST MEMORIES YOU HAD IN 2016. (plus the little Stinker wrote: *AND CELEBRATE BLAKE WINNING EVERY BOARD GAME! hahaha)

 Taylor was a real hoot, she was adamant about us all being excited and truly celebrating with vigor! When the ball dropped in NYC, she was yelling at the top of her lungs, "HAPPY NEW YEAR, HEY YOU GUYS!!! SAY HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!" She totally cracked me up, I think she actually got angry when she saw Blake not chiming in! The kids and I started to get tired and thought of giving up and going to bed, but I decided that we had made it too long to give up now...I made the kids to jumping jacks, toe touched, and spins to help them stay awake. It worked! We made it to midnight and watched the ball drop on tv with Snoop Dog as the host. We all blew our little horns and then Tay insisted on grabbing a pot and wooden spoon to "wake the neighborhood"! She went crazy out front! It was a great way to bring in 2017. It's going to be a blessed year ahead!

Friday, December 30, 2016

Blessed With Buddy

It has been so much fun having Buddy and Nutmeg around this holiday season. Buddy has hung from each tree, sat in the kitchen on baking day (with his handmade apron and oven mitt!), posed with a bow tie selfie decor, posed with selfie reindeer ears, sat in the window to see the first snow of the season and even fell and bumped his head-needing bandages and a day of rest!

Taylor and Buddy have kept in constant contact with our little Elf book. They write back and forth often! Taylor and Evie even made him his own office, complete with artwork, a desk and stool! He is one lucky loved little elf! Santa brought him a tiny teddy bear for Christmas too! Buddy has so much cute stuff here, that he asked Taylor to pack it away and keep it safe until next year. We used his original book box to use as a keepsake. It will be fun to unpack it for him next Thanksgiving night!


December Memories

Taylor got to invite Daddy to the PSE "Donuts with Dad" event. They headed to school early one morning to have breakfast together. The also got to build a toothpick and marshmallow creation! It was a great morning!
 We got to attend the annual "Pancakes with Santa" event at PSE too! Daddy and the kids got served flapjacks thrown style! They had to catch em! I was helping with the door check-in for PTO but got to sneak in to see them. Tay got to see Santa too!

 We invited Maddi and her family to join us to help decorate St. Peters City Hall. It was a cute community event to get the kids involved with the city officials. Kids got to make an ornament and then an officer helped them hang it on the city tree.

Taylor and Evie had their end of year performance for DRAMA CLUB! They played Twiddle and Twee, and they did a great job with Mrs. Cassel! So proud of them!

We carved out some time for special winter moments, including smore's by the fire, gettingm to find Buddy around the house-in his many silly situations, and

Billy surprised Blake with tickets to go see the new STAR WARS movie on preview night! We tricked him good...he laid his clothes for the day on the end of my bed before he got in the shower, we replaced the shirt with a new STAR WARS shirt. When he went to put his clothes on, he noticed the shirt and was like, "hey, thats not the shirt I picked, where's my shirt?" We told him to look closely at the shirt, he noticed it was a STAR WARS shirt, but still didn't "get it"! We asked him if he liked it and when he said he did...we had to give it away and tell him! LOL! He rarely gets to go see the  movies while they're still at the theater, so this was a really awesome surprise! 
And just days before Christmas, we had a "cookie bake-off" & baking day! Billy and Blake teamed up against Tay and I to make special Christmas treats and take votes from Allison, Andrew, Aunt Sissy, Uncle Danny, and Aunt Susie. Boys made peanut butter krispy chocolate-covered balls, and us girls made pill bottle cookies and white chocolate corn flake balls...the competition was fierce...I think the boys won but who's counting?!

Packing away Christmas & Memories Too

Right around New Year's, we go ahead and pack away Christmas decor. It's usually pretty sad for me, it's all over, and ready to be packed away for another year. But does it have to be? Remembering that the one true Christmas gift, Jesus, is given to us for ALWAYS, not just one month of the year, helps me not get depressed. Plus, it's only a week til Blake's birthday so that gives me something to look forward to.

This year, I was very organized in how I packed things away. I literally went through every single item, asked myself if it was something we loved and had to keep, or if we could part with it. While we didn't get rid of a whole lot, it is all organized and packed away according to how it would make next year easier to put up. I gotta say, I am impressed that I took the time to do it this way and I'm sure I'll be thankful next year. I'm even leaving the Advent calendar out so I go pre-package it now, so there will be no struggle to fill it next year. Taylor loves it so much and I keep finding myself stressed by what scripture, activity, or candy to fill it with. I let her down by not filling it by each morning, but there's so much going on. Not gonna happen next year...there will be SOMETHING in each compartment by November if it kills! Less candy, more meaning is the goal!

I reorganized the kids Christmas ornament box too. I placed everything in a separate envelope or container by year. This makes me feel so much better, since I've saved them for all these years. Here is this years ornament and Christmas Memories:

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

City Museum

It's been a few days since Christmas and we have all been veggin' out...we figured it was time for an outing so we took off for the St. Louis Science Museum.

 We ended the visit by flying a simulated plane in a control center around the arch! It was pretty cool and very realistic. On the way out, Taylor saw a SALE going on at Build-a-Bear workshop and just had to spend some of her Christmas money from Aunt Sissy. She got Golden Glisten & Spark, two little reindeer...they are really cute, she already used Spark as a pillow on the ride home!