Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas Morning & More

So we had a great Christmas morning at my parents' house.  They girls especially loved their dolls- just look at them feeding the dolls bottles! - so cute.  And we also got them Doodle Pros.  Now they have something to color on as they ask to "cuyor" daily.

It's not Christmas without some clothes and they got some really cute stuff!
And another favorite present was blocks.
My dad made these for them and they sure love to let us build 
them up so they can quickly knock them down.

And one of Russell's favorite presents was his Duke sweatshirt (his favorite college basketball team)  The funny thing is there was a good deal when you bought 2 sweatshirts (I can't pass up a good deal!) so I called Russell's sister and she had me get one for her to give to her husband, Mark.  Mark's favorite team is North Carolina and in case you didn't know- Duke and UNC are rival schools.
The day after Christmas we were finally in our own home- so we had another Christmas morning with the girls.  We had saved just a couple presents that we didn't want to haul anywhere else to give them when we were home.  The first was nothing too exciting- just a bucket of foam letters and puzzle-type pieces.  They had fun opening the gift, though
One of the girls' absolute favorite gifts was this table I found at a garage sale.  It only came with 1 chair so we bought a set of 2 on Amazon and now they have a chair for a friend or more kids when we have them.  They sat at this table all day that 1st day and played with their doodle pros and their Elmo dolls and babies and their tea set (another garage sale Christmas present)  They LOVE having their own little chairs and somewhere to sit and color.
We had a fantastic Christmas and hope you did too!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Eve

Christmas eve was spent with the Hatches this year at my parents' house.  We started the evening like we always do- with chimes.  We each get a chime and a spoon and Mom holds up the music while we play Christmas songs.  Morgan likes to sit with Matt and he lets her hold the spoon.
My family always does a "live nativity" on Christmas eve.  Usually it's the kids acting out some of the parts while my dad reads about Christ's birth from the scriptures.  This is an example from last year when my niece, Emily was Mary and my nephews Kaleb and Brandon were Joseph and a king.  My mom is holding up Aubrey as the angel and Madylin is the baby Jesus (examining a gift from the king)

But this year, for some reason, my mom decided that Russell and I were going to play Mary and Joseph.  Kaleb is a king, Sara a shepherd, and the girls are supposed to be sheep I think.  (My brother Jacob's "kid" Sammy the dog is a donkey, along with Eeyore- see the resemblance?)

The problem with this year's nativity is that we couldn't find a baby doll, so Mom just handed me a rolled up towel to hold.  Well, Madylin was totally confused and kept asking me "baby?" and pulling on the towel.  She just kept saying "baby?" and poking at the towel and she was getting so upset and loud that I was holding some baby that she couldn't see that I had to unroll the towel so that she could see that there was no baby.  All this while my dad was reverently reading from the scriptures and my family was singing "Silent Night."  Yes it was a very spirichul experience- Russell's face says it all.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Gingerbread Houses

I probably would not have posted about our gingerbread/graham cracker house creations this year, but Russell really wanted me to (he is really proud of his)
Here it is- the first one of the year.  Russell made this at a Christmas party with some other couples from the ward.  He made me a red door because I LOVE houses with red doors and hope to have a cute enough house that I can have one someday.  He did good.
This one was made by my niece, Sara.  She is 11.  It looked really good and then she just started throwing stuff on and using the red icing and it ended up looking like this.  She said the peanut shells are reindeer droppings.  Lovely.

This one was made by my mother, cute huh?

My SIL, Jessica.  Very traditional

My brother Matt and his son Kaleb.  3 chimneys (Matt builds fire places for a living)

And lastly, mine.  Russell did the construction and I did the decorating- isn't that just how it should be?
More Christmas stuff to come as I find the motivation  . . .

Saturday, December 20, 2008

3 Years and Counting . . .

Only in California can you take pictures at the beach on December 20th and be completely comfortable!

Our little wedding party- I was so happy 
with the way everything/everyone looked!

My dad and others spent a LONG time putting up this tent and the chandelier because I didn't want the reception to look like a boring old church gym.  LOVED this!

Our engagement photo.  Geez why can't we always look like this?!

Celebrating Our Anniversary

Today is our 3rd wedding anniversary! Oh and guess what Russell is doing?  He's out at the dunes with his dad and his brothers and I'm here taking care of 2 girls with pink eye and an ear infection. Naah I'm kidding- I'm not mad at all.  We celebrated last night so that Russell could go riding today with his brother who we haven't seen in a year and a half ( he lives in Minnesota).  
So last night we left the kiddos with my good friend and neighbor and went to see the new Will Smith movie "Seven Pounds."  It was good- I think I will enjoy it more the 2nd time. You know all that mystery there is surrounding that movie? (you know the hush-hush interviews and the vague trailers) well, you have to deal with that mystery the whole movie because nothing is revealed until the very end. It's like you are just handed puzzle pieces the whole movie long that you just have to sit there and hold until the very end of the movie when you can finally lay them all down to make sense of them.  Don't get me wrong- I liked the movie- it's just kind of frustrating because you just have to keep guessing what is really going on the whole time.  Go see it- Russell and I both cried and we liked it.  Will Smith is such an amazing actor. 
After the movie Russell took me to a fancy italian restaurant called Isabella's.  Our food was really good.  Russell got lamb that was the special for that night because our waiter said it was amazing and boy was it!  It was so yummy.  My canneloni, ravioli and gnocchi was good too (combo plate 'cause I couldn't decide!), but the lamb was awesome!
Notice the couple in the background totally posing for our picture!  We thought that was funny

Friday, December 19, 2008

Caught Red-handed

Russell and I were busy getting ready for a Christmas party on Saturday night.  When I came around the corner after doing my make- up, I caught Morgan red-handed . . . literally.

We had frosted some sugar cookies to take Christmas caroling and Morgan reached up on to the counter and dragged a cookie off of the plate.  There was a trail of red frosting from the plate down the counter and part of the cupboard underneath the counter.
She SOO knew what she'd done.  She didn't even cry when I took the cookie away.
Just look at that guilty face


Oh and in case you're worried like I was- I got the red food coloring off her cute velvet lounge suit.  Woo hoo!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Santa "Ho Ho Ho"

Whenever the girls see pictures of Santa they say "Santa- Ho Ho Ho." It's really adorable. Regardless . . .

I'm sure most of you mom's will relate to this:  It's the ward Christmas party and you're imagining the adorable pictures you can take with your kids sitting on Santa's lap, smiling up at him with glee.
But in reality, you get something like this . . .
Why are some kids simply terrified of the jolly guy,
While others are fascinated?

Madylin pushing past the older kids to get to Santa (actually she just loves stairs- I don't think she even realized who was at the top!)
He gave her candy, so he couldn't be all that bad.

Morgan wouldn't even get close to him.
Oh well- Maybe next year

Friday, December 12, 2008

Redlands Christmas Parade

Last weekend we went to the Redlands Christmas Parade in downtown Redlands.   It's not the most exciting parade, but it's still fun to be out in the cold looking at all the Christmas lights and listening to all the middle school bands play "Jingle Bells."  The guys always like the classic cars that are all decked out in twinkle lights.  I love the small town feel to it and how it just puts you in the Christmas mood.
I didn't really get any good pictures of the parade because it was too dark, but here is our little family at the parade.

Madylin is sort of smiling. To get them to smile for pictures lately I have to tell them to "show me your teeth" and this is often the result

Morgan does a little better with smiling for the camera. 

Hope you are all finding ways to get into the Christmas mood!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Got My Camera Back . . .

I finally got my camera back after leaving in at my brothers' house at Thanksgiving.  SO, I'm posting these late, but here they are-  pictures of what we did at Thanksgiving. . .

Posing for pictures at Uncle Matt's house.  Both the girls do the dimple fingers thing  when we tell them to say "cheese."  (I think they got it from singing "If You Chance to Meet a Frown" in nursery)

Here are Madylin and Morgan having a "tea party" with my neice, Sara.

           Madylin getting some "tea"       
                                    Morgan pouring

Madylin playing ping pong with Uncle Matt and Sara

Good times.  Thank goodness my camera wasn't lost!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Any Ideas?

So I just posted something on my other blog (the thrill of thrift) because it was based on a garage sale find, and now I am wishing that I posted it here because someone might be able to help me who only reads this blog.  So please head over to the thrill of thrift and maybe you can help me with something . . .

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


I have officially christmafied my blog.  So many others have done so and I had a few people ask me why I hadn't yet.  The truth is I don't like to change things once I have them the way I like them!  But anyways, I figured I should do something, so I've got widgets on the right, a Christmas playlist, and last year's Christmas picture of the twins as the header (a big step for me).  That's as much as I'll do because I like my template the way it is!  
Enjoy the music and I hope you all are having a great start to December!  Can't believe Christmas is 23 days away!

Monday, December 1, 2008

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas . . .

I'm back after a  wonderful Thanksgiving week.  Hopefully I'll have some pictures to post of last week soon, but I can't find my camera and I think I left it at my brother's house in San Diego : (
My lovely neighbor let me borrow her camera to take some pictures of the Christmas decor in our home.
After some "help" from the girls I was able to finish everything in just a couple of hours.
Here is the computer desk . . .
And this is the Nativity I found (See The Thrill of Thrift for details)

This is on top of our Entertainment Center. My Mother did this arrangement for me for Christmas 3 years ago using a lot of the silk flowers from our wedding, so it is very special to me. (We had 2 wedding receptions, so my mom did a lot of arrangements in silk to save time and moola and now we still get to see them!)
This is another centerpiece she made just last week that now I get to have on my piano- I love it!
And of course our little tree.  We don't have enough room for a big one!
Hope you are all getting into the Christmas spirit!