More Christmas Fun!

 I love pictures. I love the way I can remember the feel of the room, the smells, the sounds, the before and after of the shot. I try to take a lot of pictures because time goes so fast and I want to remember as much as I can of these days.

The busyness, the laughter, the frustrations, the way my house never looks clean because it is forever strewn with toys, the tired nights, the memorable family days (good and bad), the quiet moments, the hugs and kisses, the routines.

After a lengthy wait for Christmas breakfast which turned into more of a lunch (chalk that up to burnt onions and green peppers and a race to see which store was open on Christmas Day…), the boys finally got to open gifts:)

 They were just raring to go and helped sort the gifts into piles.

 Eliana took in all of the excitement from her highchair as she feasted on Christmas brunch:)

 I love that each of the boys got their “Wow” moment this Christmas, thanks to loved ones!

 Eliana said a lot of “Wow” and “ooooh!” this Christmas!

 Papa proudly wore his Russian fur hat while putting together E’s new toy:)

 And there she is “Oooh-ing” as she got ready to push her new doll in the walker/stroller.

 Later that afternoon, we joined together for our annual big Christmas gathering at my aunt’s house. The boys were kept entertained (and their new addictions were fed) by my mom and Aunt J, who loaned them phones to play “Angry Birds.” By the end of our trip, I am ashamed to say that they weren’t the only ones addicted. We went down one by one….

 The next few days were perfect for playing with new toys, including new art supplies from Grandma!

 The boys love to paint!

 Here is my mom’s doggie “Winston Churchhound.” He fell in love with us and all of our energy, perfect for a puppy!

 On the Thursday after Christmas, we finally had a long planned (as in, since we had our slumber party here last month) pajama party with Mugga! Mugga snuggled with the boys while we watched “Kung Fu Panda” (a surprisingly very cute movie!). Winston inched his way onto the bed and soon took over half of it:)

We munched on kettle corn (my newest addiction~yum!), holly cookies and tiny tims!

 Then Daddy read a story out of one of Samuel’s new Magic Tree House books before we tucked the little fellers in bed.

 And here is Missy getting into my purse on New Year’s Day:) We had a traditional Bohemian New Year’s meal at my grandparent’s house of pork roast, saurkraut, dumpling, applesauce and potatoes. The meal is supposed to bring good luck for the year, which would be nice:) It was my very first time tasting saurkraut (to the shock of my family) and I was actually pleasantly surprised! Even Eliana liked her little taste of it:)

And then we said goodbye to Mugga bright and early Tuesday morning as she headed off to work. It was a sad day for us to the leave the loving warmth of our families, especially for the boys. After we loaded up our van to the gills, we also got to meet Grandma and spend a few minutes with her, stocking up on hugs to carry us until the next time.

Thank you, dear family, for the special memories you helped create, for the ever-present open arms and acceptance that you show us, for the numerous hugs, for the laughter and for the blessings. We love you!

Out with the Old, In with the New

Happy New Year!
This past year:
*Turned from a 4 year old into a very independent 5 year old.
*Finished his first year of preschool
*Started kindergarten
*Has (and is) learned to read
*Made his first best friend, Peter:)
*Has learned to play a lot of new games (ex. Go Fish)
*Met and fell in love with his baby sister
January 2010
 December 2010
*Turned 3 years old
*Got potty-trained (still struggle with the pooping part though.)
*Started pre-school and is thriving!
*Continued(s) with his light/plug obsession.
*Started memorizing songs and books!
*Starting pretend playing and using his imagination more.
*Got more independent and insists on doing things HIMSELF. But still likes to hold our hands:)

January 2010

November 2010


*Was born!
*Has learned to smile and coo
*Is really aware of where we are.
*Loves to watch her brothers
*Is now regularly sleeping 6-8 hours a night and we are hoping for more soon!
*Has rejected all bottle attempts.
*Is sweet, kissable and beautiful!
We had a busy year with lots of sickness last winter, my mouth surgery, being pregnant, moving, buying a “new” van, both boys starting school, having Eliana, Ben traveling for his conference….
We are very curious and excited to know what this new year holds for us. Will we move again? Will Ben get a job and finish his dissertation? My big kindergartner will turn 6 (wiping tears now..), Z will be 4 at the end of next month (what??!!) and Eliana will turn….no. I can’t say it yet. Forget that for now.
We are looking forward to new beginnings, creating new routines as a family and most of all, focusing more on God together as a family and learning how to live for Him, creating a good example for our kiddos and having a peaceful home full of love.
Welcome 2011!