Sunday, December 25, 2011

Joy to the World

We had an absolutely wonderful Christmas day. I woke up at about 5:30 and couldn't go back to sleep. I just couldn't risk the kids getting up before I did! I wanted to see their faces when they came downstairs, so I got up and had a little quiet time and cat napped on the couch. I finally heard Jackson's door knob turn at 7:00. Then the fun began. 

Here's our tree early in the morning. We put it in a new place this year and I really liked it there. 

This is Annabeth's pile. She got a cardboard castle, a balance bike, a helmet, some princesses and a baby doll.

Here's Jackson's pile. He got a cardboard rocket ship, an art easel, a hot wheels race track, an alarm clock, a night light, and a coin bank. He had the sweetest attitude about his gifts all day long. He was an absolute joy to give to.

We went to my mom's house for lunch and had a fabulous time. My cousin Megen had made these fun little aprons for all of us, including Annabeth's baby doll.

Mom and Curtis

Me and the Sir

Me and my sweet girl.

This is my nephew pup, Winston. 

Aunt Melissa and Annabeth 

Good night, my hair was big today. It wasn't on purpose.  

For Christmas, Melissa asked for this really big book for scholarly people. I can't even pronounce the name of it. She was thrilled beyond belief. 

Mom and Dad in their elf hats

Lis and Colin 

Cousin Joe and Pappaw

Dad, Uncle Mike and Cousin Ben

Cousins Zach and Josh

Mom, Dad and Aunt Gay

We were laughing hysterically during this little photo shoot.

Annabeth fell asleep about 60 seconds after we got on the road. 

There's a lot going on all around me right now - too much to get real serious in this post. But I want you to know that Jesus is my life, my hope, my reason. He is who makes this family's life abundant. I'm so thankful that He came into this world to be God with us

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Can You Believe It's Christmas Eve?

My house can hardly contain the energy of two very excited little kids this Christmas Eve. It probably doesn't help that we're on the Elf Diet this morning. I made cinnamon toast for breakfast and then for a snack I gave the kids little baggies of marshmallows. Tonight after our church's Christmas Eve service we're having a spaghetti dinner with some dear friends and, I don't know, there could be syrup.

Our schedule for this week was a 9.5 out of 10 on the busy scale. It was all fun stuff, but there was something big on the calendar every day. That was until Wednesday morning when the pre-Christmas stomach bug of 2011 hit our family. A group of ten had shared dinner together at my parents' house on Monday night and by Wednesday morning, four of us in four different homes were wishing they could be unconscious for a while. Jackson was the sick one in our house, bless his heart.

The care-taking anointing fell on Curtis and he sprung into action. The obsessive compulsive vomit phobia came upon me and I pretty much retreated to my room until the fun was over - about 24 hours later. We cancelled everything that had been planned for the next two days and went into hermit mode. That's never ideal, but maybe we needed to rest and just be together at home.

I have to say, I've been really excited about having a break from the school schedule. It's not really hard, but it's nice not to set an alarm. My hubs has won major points for letting me sleep until 10 AM on two separate occasions.

I was very proud of Jackson on his last day of the semester. He's kept a great attitude about school, stayed enthusiastic about learning, and behaved himself in class. Of course, when I sat him down and poured out my words of affirmation, he responded with, "Are you going to give me a gift now?" I said, "Son! I am giving you a gift - my words!" Ha! We clearly do not have the same love language.

Speaking of words, the kids have been cracking us up with their sayings. Jackson's been saying "yesterday yesterday" instead of "the day before yesterday." Annabeth's speech is gold, pure gold, with go-to expressions like "booly halla," which has a mysterious meaning that we have not been able to discern. Yesterday she kept saying, "I tell you a secret." Then she'd whisper, "Butterfly," or "The dragon and the butterfly are at the airport."

Abey's third birthday is just over a month away and she is changing so much. For a while I doubted I would live to see her third birthday because I was just sure her contrariness was taking decades off my life. But it became apparent that some very mean and nasty molars were making their way through. I hoped my sweet, if headstrong, girl would come back to me soon and she finally did.

We have our first Christmas Eve service tonight at Bayou City Fellowship. It seems surreal that all of this has actually happened between last Christmas and now. I can't wait to worship Jesus with our church family on this special night. The chapel we normally use is not going to have electricity due to some construction getting ready to happen at the school, so we're having a candlelight service outside. (We have a plan if it rains.) If you don't have a place to worship this Christmas, we'd love for you to join us tonight at Houston Christian High School at 5 PM. Bundle up and bring some blankets and lawn chairs. There will be child care for babies up to age 2.

Have a very merry Christmas, friends!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


I got really lucky when my friend Beth (Beth V Photography) ended up with an opening in her family portrait schedule in November. Homegirl (me) is such a procrastinator that I would never have thought to book a Christmas photo session as early as I would've needed to. Beth offered us the spot if we wanted it and YES! We did! She suggested we do the session at a local carnival and while I fought her at first (because I didn't want to take pictures in front of hordes of people), I'm so glad I listened to her. The colors in the background are so much fun. The evening was windy, the kids were squirrely and distracted, and I didn't think she would be able to get anything usable. But Beth is a pro and I was really pleased with how they turned out. Thanks, Beth! 

Monday, December 19, 2011

Lots O' Pics

I have a lovely assortment of unrelated pictures to share on this Monday morning. It's been a two-cups-of-tea-morning for me. How about you?  

This is a drawing by Jackson of a "Christmas alient (alien) with jingle bells."

This is my little PK who ran around in the pouring rain after church a few weeks ago. 

On this day we redeemed Annabeth's love for the Disney princesses by having them come and worship baby Jesus. 

Christmas stickers are fun. 

This is Jackson's self-portrait. Look at those muscles. 

Last week my parents moved out of the home they've lived in since I was 5 years old. Mom found my old Rainbow Brite doll in the process. I loved her.

AB and I kept mom company on the day the movers came. There were a lot of tears, but this was just a sweet moment between the two Bethies.

Annabeth wanted to feed the birds in the back yard one last time. 

She only managed to feed a naughty bird dog. 

She tried again under another tree.

Mr. and Mrs. Cardinal came by for a snack. 

Annabeth got this little dress from my mom last year. It has a tiny cameo of Dora on the front, otherwise I don't think it's very Dora-like. AB wasn't really into frou frou dresses at that time and didn't want to wear it. Well, she has suddenly become Dora's biggest fan, so I got out this dress again. It's a little small now but she loves it so much. 


I attempted to roll Annabeth's hair that morning. She didn't realize what I was doing at first, but when she figured it out she made me take it all down. This is as curly as we could get it in 60 seconds.

This was my second attempt on Saturday night. We're working up to the greater hair glory. She has a lot of hair but it isn't coarse enough to hold much curl. 

You've made it to the end! Bless your heart!