Monday, December 28, 2009

NBA Christmas

Home from the whirlwind tour of Alberta - 1 night in Revelstoke, 2 nights in Calgary, 3 nights in Olds, and 3 more nights in Calgary. We haven't been "home" for Christmas for 3 years, so it was great to be with family!

We started the visit with my Mom's birthday and a family dinner that night. Got in a little skating at the local rink, a few sled runs down Gramma's back hill, coffee at Tim Horton's in Olds with an old friend, and Christmas Eve at church in Didsbury with lots of carols. Christmas morning started early with a nose bleed (Jacob), otherwise we might have slept in til 8:30, even with a 2 and a 4 year old in the house! I loved watching everyone open their stockings up and just know that this was a simple Christmas. The economy has been good that way to make us think about what it's really about.

My brother hosted Christmas dinner at his new house in Cochrane where we had a lovely sit down dinner (during the basketball game) for 19 of curried goat, turkey, oxtail, plantain, multiple veggies and salads too numerous to name, Jamaican rum cake and pumpkin pie. The best gift of all was announced before dinner - I'm going to be an AUNTIE again! My brother Paul's wife is expecting!! We're all rooting for a girl (except Jacob).

We had a bit of time to visit with a few different and wonderful friends that we wish we could see way more often!

And we're home to a quiet house with lots of good memories and thankfulness for 2009.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

It's Ours

Happy Birthday to me, we got our new house (1/2 duplex) today! Keys in hand. The people moved out this morning and we went over and did cartwheels in the empty living room tonight (well the kids did- they hadn't seen it yet). We bought a half duplex last month for an investment property so have been busy moving money around, doing paperwork, seeing lawyers etc. Now we just have to rent it out! Know anyone? We showed it tonight and they loved it. If they have good credit, we might have it done before we head home for Christmas.

Great back deck for summer BBQs.

The Heavens Declare!

the Glory of God

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Guard yourselves

On a recent internet search for a gift we are making for Jacob, I came across this!!! After the gross factor left me, I had a good chuckle! There are other things you can make too from these beloved items! This is the model he'll be getting with a bag of mini's. KD figured we had better make 2, so we can have a little self defense. Actually the girl across the street is going to come over and make it for her brother for Christmas. Then we can send them both OUTSIDE!

This Little Piggy

Aren't these the cutest?

Monday, December 14, 2009

I Had to be Reminded it was Monday

See this is why I shouldn't commit myself to doing something this regular. I almost forgot AGAIN! Well actually I didn't this morning, but did as the day wore on...
So I'm thankful...
28. that I didn't miss today's post.
29. that my girl had a great, fun time doing a Christmas gift exchange tonight (it isn't always easy with these girls)
30. for the pretty flakes that are falling tonight
31. for skipping Bible study and just having coffee
32. that my Christmas shopping is done!
33. for the wonder of thinking about the big PLAN- that He chose for it to involve a baby- who would do that?
34. for Christmas cookies and the ability to bake them together
35. the beauty of the world captured in digital and people so gifted at it
36. the similarities we have between us all
37. the silly license plate game my family plays and that I'm currently winning, and as part of that game Jacob yelled out 'Titz' and didn't know it was a bad thing.
38. for step by step craft instructions on projects that looked a lot easier than they are
39. watching my boy cuddle with his dog makes all the chewed suede boots worthwhile
40. that I'm still not quite 40! make that not quite 39 for another 25 hours!

holy experience

Sunday, December 13, 2009

I Love this Time of Year for this Reason

Yes - my fridge. It's time for the yearly update. That doesn't mean it's when all the outdated and molding items get removed, although that's a fabulous idea, it's when we start to get new family photos in the mail with some of the Christmas cards. The faces of loved ones that have been my constant companions for the past year or sometimes more, are replaced with the kids looking a little older, or new babies added to the family, or a few more grey hairs. There are some photos I have loved that have been there for many years, they have sticky spills and finger prints on them, but the faces have welcomed me on early mornings, or snack attacks, or which each meal that has come and gone through this kitchen. I sometimes see clean fridges in other people's homes, and like the idea for a moment, but then think I could not do without the love I know has come from each special person smiling at me. And I think of the prayers I have prayed for you as I've looked at your eyes on my fridge. So keep sending or we both miss out :)

A Typical Family Evening

This is what ensued after the angel warrior scene at church last night (of course these things always go on at the top of the stairs) :

While I had the camera out this was...

(note jeans again)

and this is
AFTER .... Jacob was told he might need to be bribed to cooperate for the family photo shoot when Auntie Tara does our pics in AB. I think I need to take a lighting course.

Meanwhile, in the kitchen, completely oblivious to the goings on elsewhere...

We always wear out toques when we make chocolates :)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Too Many Cookies?

We're busy getting ready for Christmas having spent the afternoon baking some of the usuals (I actually haven't baked anything in this past year's photo- oh no!). I minimized the list a little this year since we are planning the drive home to Calgary if their weather smartens up- we haven't even had snow yet and the kids are getting fiesty about it making a firm request in meal time prayers.

This evening was our church's Living Nativity and I liked that the angels were sword wielding/fighting warriors, who said "Fear Not". The ballet dancing, pretty flowy angels just don't quite warrant being afraid of. It definitely drew the attention of all the 11 year old boys in the crowd. "Ain't no pansy Jesus!" (that was a quote from one of our pastors that I like to say)

The other night, some other shenanigans ensued. I think it started out as being Santa, but changed rather quickly into how fat can I get? All involved decided that those people on the 'Biggest Loser' really do have a difficult time just doing little things, like getting up off the couch. And that maybe some moderation in Christmas cookie consumption isn't all Mom's bad idea.

Erin had to join in the entertainment after rolling her eyes at it for awhile.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


If you know Jacob at all, you know he is all about comfort. There is no pretense in the boy, he could care less what anyone else thinks of him. Sometimes to our detriment by what he says, like when he was 5, to the rather round bellied grape farmer, "Do you have a baby in there?" This goes as well for what he wears. Style is the least priority, the feel of the clothes on the body is of utmost importance. So, since he was old enough to have his own opinion, I have not been able to get the boy to wear anything but athletic pants. We're not talking just sweats, he mostly wears like track pants, and I try to get a little bit of style going. But the problem is he's on his knees an awful lot playing (cars, Lego, sports, hockey, tree climbing, being a very active 11 year old) and they wear holes through them so fast!
I've been trying to get him into jeans just for the durability of them. I've tried many approaches, taking him shopping, trying them on- that doesn't go so well since he hates it the best of times. Bringing some pairs home...
WELL last week Costco had a fabulous deal and I bought 3 pairs in varying sizes and styles. I figured even if they sit in his drawer, they were only $12. Well mercy of all mercies, he liked one pair and he's decided maybe he'll start wearing them, and the first time he put them on without prompting was to go to church. I snagged a quick photo (maybe that didn't help the situation, since he hates attention on him too), but I had to!
His legs look so much taller and thinner in the form fitting clothing :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Post from Erin =)

Just wanted everyone to see this shocking video about Christmas.

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Tree

Friday we headed out to get the Christmas tree. I think I've felt rushed this year, and just wanted to get it done. But off we went. We hit snow, and ice on the way up the forestry road, so couldn't get very far up hill so we walked up trying find something among all these tall skinnies. There wasn't a speck of snow when we left home.

After tromping through the woods for an hour, we came across a beauty, half way down quite a steep embankment. I stayed where I was and the rest scrambled down and precariously chopped this baby down.

Funny how it looks so much prettier covered in snow than in my living room! It was a bit Charlie Brownish and I felt the urge to go to the tree lot and buy one. I figured that was just my pride getting the better of me, and we did a little "grafting" and it looks loved and well decorated now.

This little one also came home with us (the tree and the girl).It was pretty socked in by the time we headed down, so we headed for home and did our traditional wiener/s'more roast in the back yard.

I almost forgot it was Monday! I don't feel particularly thankful today, so this is a good thing for me to do.

holy experience

9. Monday mornings... to be encouraged with other women and read God's Word
10. seeing a neighbor Dad making a skating rink for his boys in the front yard
11. fast food dinners on a day that doesn't feel like cooking
12. having my house almost all clean all at one time (I'm having people over tomorrow)
13. a parcel in the mail today - with polka dots :)
14. a husband who folds laundry
15. fudge
16. cherries frozen in the freezer that remind of summer
17. funny old men in Costco
18. poinsettias
19. photos to look back on
20. "3 Sisters" that arrived today
21. my boy that helped to decorate the mantle, I confess, I had to help it a little, I just couldn't leave it be
22. pretty lights on the tree
23. warm mittens
24. thinking about warm, cozy nights watching movies
25. Knowing that when Jesus said, "Lord take this cup from me" that He chose to follow through anyways
26. quick interaction with people through the internet- doesn't it just amaze you how we can just chat like we're in the next room?!
27. Erin made the city volleyball team and she feels great about it!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

For Tara

I figured you must be missing him...since you wondered...

Oh my aching heart... how can one face be so cute and lovable and so mischievous at the same time? I want to kiss him and kick him at other moments. Did I just say that? I would never kick a dog!! Would I? Where are my favorite gloves anyways?

How can you deny the longing in those eyes?

Take note of the drool in this shot...

I'll zoom in so you can get a better look... the drool ended up on my pants... my standards keep going down... first children, then a pet, there's no hope for cleanliness... but happiness YES!

Oh those eyes.... those begging, longing eyes...
We were trying to eat lunch and avoid the stare...
They are glistening with love for you (or whatever happens to be on your plate, or in your hand...)

"See I can sit really still and behave when there's good incentive."

What's for Dinner?

What's for dinner? Don't you love that question? I was going to say" hate that question", but rather than be totally negative, I'll use my good Canadian sarcasm to get the same point across.

This is what happens when your husband is doing a lot more of the grocery shopping and cooking. You get to have "narwhal tongue" for dinner. I love the creative minds of teenagers!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


YAY it's December 1st! I love this day! It's like the season can begin!
We enjoyed our first family walk last night after dark admiring the Christmas lights and coming home for hot chocolate. It's like a December tradition. Tonight there will be more lights I'm sure.

The advent calendar is up, and as the kids are getting older, we aren't doing the usual chocolate every morning-- even before breakfast. And hanging the little ornament on our advent tree just isn't too exciting anymore. But this will be!
So....I've NEVER done this before, but wanted to spoil the kids a little this year because they've gone without allowance and other things since before the summer and been so good about it. It all started with getting this great advent calendar for Jacob, so I then had to go out and find little things for Erin to open up every day. So for 24 days, they get a little something every day! It wasn't ready for before school today, but when they come home it'll be there! Can't tell you what because I have some blog readers that would have their surprise spoiled.

And my Christmas cactus is starting to bud!