Friday, December 28, 2012

It's Christmas

We had a nice Christmas, and I managed to take a few photos while enjoying the time we had with all the kids here. We attended the Christmas Eve service at church, and were able to get everyone seated together before the service started. It's always really crowded, and trying to save seats becomes a bit tricky. The sanctuary was beautifully decorated, and accented with special lighting for the evening.
Andrew was all decked out in his fancy boots.
Haleigh got to come to the sanctuary to hold a candle before being relocated to the nursery during the service. I'm sure she was much happier there.
Matthew did a great job singing and lighting a candle to start the candlelight part of the service.
After church, we all went to Andrew and Darci's to enjoy appetizers and festive beverages. Ella liked the artichoke dip.
We gathered together on Christmas morning for brunch at our house.
The little girls opened their first packages to find...

their very own show steers, complete with the Stewart Select Angus brand.
Ella was working on leading hers around the living room.
Ready for the show!
Lined up head to tail.
Meanwhile, Matthew opened a great big remote control tractor.
Haleigh checked out the brand.
And Andrew tied them up so they wouldn't wander off while we opened the rest of the presents.
A hug.
It's really heavy!
But pretty well behaved.
Even though it's technically a show steer, Haleigh liked calling it her heifer. Since they are not 'anatomically correct' they can be either gender. :)
Haleigh also got a doctor kit, since she is a big fan of Doc McStuffins. She promptly checked the calf with her stethoscope.
Matthew tried out the big big tractor while Ella watched.
The girls were also excited by their pirate ship.
It even talks and plays music.
Bryan and Jennifer.
David and Shylah.
Boomie and Michael.
Jim, Jenny, and Gumbo.
Andrew and Darci.
Matthew and Nana working on his Legos.
Matthew driving his tractor.
Making an adjustment.
And of course, his dad needed a turn to drive it as well.
The heifers/steers stood quietly,
watching over my present from the kids. Which I love.
The kids that were traveling headed out Christmas afternoon, and made it home safely before the blizzard hit on Wednesday morning. Strong winds and several inches of snow combined to make travel difficult, close businesses, and keep most of us indoors drinking hot chocolate.
The wind left deep piles of snow in some spots, and bare pavement in others.

I have always liked snow days, and prefer to take them literally, staying warm and dry inside. I cancelled my appointment, made a pot of chili, and tuned in to the all-day news reports to stay up to the minute on the storm. I find it interesting how the news reporters urge everyone to STAY HOME while cutting to some barely visible guy out on the side of the road trying to interview passing motorists. Crazy!
While the conditions were blizzard-like for a while, when the snow and wind stopped, the crews were able to get out and do a pretty good job of clearing the roads.
Enough that Jim and I were able to get to Indy on Thursday to purchase my other present. Which I also love.
 Or at least I will when I learn how to use it. :)

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Joy to the World!

Wishing you a blessed Christmas 
from our family to yours. 

May your heart be filled
with the wonder of His love.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Go Go Go Joseph!

My parents like to take the whole family to a show as their Christmas gift to us. This year, we got to see one of our favorites, 'Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat' at the Civic Theater. We know the show well, as several of our kids were in the children's chorus with our local theater group, and three of our boys got to be 'brothers' in the high school's performance.
Here are our boys before the show.
And our girls.
Such a dazzling coat of many colors.
We especially liked the special additions to the show: 'Gangnam Style' on 'One More Angel in Heaven' and shown below, 'Call Me Maybe' in the baker's song.
So much fun!
We also enjoyed seeing the granddaughter of good friends who worked for years as sales manager at our seed company. She's the one in the purple shirt.
After the show, we went to my brother's to enjoy pizza. Jon and Mom don't look too happy, but we really did have a good time.
We enjoyed several delicious desserts. These are  triple layer peppermint brownies adapted from a special recipe. I will post the recipe shortly.
A birthday cake for my brother Michael.
Peppermint Oreo Truffles. Found on Pinterest.
Matthew, Dara, and Jennifer enjoyed watching videos of Christmas surprises. Just google 'Christmas pony surprise' and you'll see what I mean.
After an enjoyable time together, we headed out. Some went north, some went south, and we left with Jennifer and Bryan's dogs who came to spend a few days with us while J & B were making some family Christmas visits.
And now, it's Christmas Eve, and I wish you peace, joy, and time to share with the ones you love as we celebrate the gift of Jesus.
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!