Friday, November 30, 2012

Thank you Mrs. Cassada!!!

Isn't it so cute on me?  Thanks Mrs. Cassada - I LOVE it!  :)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Washing it is only half of the process

The maid never showed up this week and so this pile of clean clothes has been waiting to be folded and put away...

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Whole Decade!!

 Wow.  10 years old.  Happy Birthday Josiah!  
 This kid loves traditions as much as I do...and I LOVE that!  So of course its breakfast donuts first!  (Notice he's wearing his TNT shirt?  His birthday fell on a Wednesday this year (not an ideal day in our family).  He was a little sad/concerned that our Wednesday activities would edge out his birthday but I assured him that it would work out.  He decided to wear his TNT shirt so that he didn't have to change later for AWANA..thereby saving more time for birthday celebration.  Smart kid, right?

 Caleb, Judah and I went and had lunch with him and brought him his favorite sub from Firehouse (Club on a Sub - my favorite too except he gets his plain!).  Love the free subs on your birthday!
 He was so excited when he came home from school and discovered that David had come home early so that we could celebrate his birthday before choir practice/AWANA!  :)
 I found this set of football guys where you can line up the players and practice plays and formations and things.  The kids love it!

 That's quite a thank you between brothers! (The football guys were "from" Jacob)

 USC Pajama pants "from" Callie

 USC football "from" Caleb
 and....drumroll please...a Carolina jersey from mom and dad!  He was SO excited!  He's been asking for one for the last two years.  And I had to go to the Garnet & Black store, because the replicas that are all over town would never have worked for this kid!
Happy Birthday Josiah!  I am so proud of the man that you are growing up to be.  You are so thoughtful and sensitive and smart - God has given you some amazing abilities and talents that He wants to use for HIS glory.  I pray that you will always keep a teachable spirit and use your leadership skills for good!  I love you SO much and am so thankful that God gave you to Daddy and me ten years ago.  You were the first person to ever call me Mommy - and that is a priceless gift!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Press-On Nails!

Guess what Callie picked from the treasure box at school? Princess Press On Nails!  Does life get any better?  :)

Monday, November 26, 2012


My head was totally still spinning from the trip and a VERY full Sunday and coming back to being in FULL swing for my upcoming musical.  Monday, very last minute,  we ended up being at church all day long helping my neighbor.  She has graciously agreed to paint the set backdrop for the musical and so we went up to help her with a few things.  I am SO thankful that Caleb is so laid back.  There's not many 3 year olds that could handle this and be agreeable - but he is!  He read some of Callie's magic books (they happened to still be in the car from the trip), played with Judah a little bit - he was a real trooper!  So thankful!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The things you do to keep a 3 month old baby happy on a 600 mile car trip...

Have your kids sing "Father Abraham"....WITH the motions of course!!  :)

One last hurrah before goodbye

After breakfast on Saturday morning, we headed over to the Green Market near Kelli's house.  They have a HUGE Farmer's Market each Saturday with all kinds of vendors and things out and about.  We walked through and sampled lots of yummy things (Red Velvet Donuts - yes please!).  We ended up back at this open space again that we played at yesterday.  They had corn hole and sandboxes set up - it was so nice!

 These little sandboxes were set up for kids...right next to wear the super cool sand sculptures were!  It was a cute idea!

 Callie took Joe all over the place in the wagon!
 We watched progress being made on the 40 foot tall sand sculptured Christmas Tree!  :)

 Not an expert, but I'm pretty sure Callie is a little close to the hole :)
 Kristen and Mom with the babies :)

 Caleb...not usually very far from one of the babies...he liked kissing and rubbing Sam's bald little head :)
 Right before we said goodbye, it dawned on me that I didn't think I had a picture of me and Kelli with our babies!!!

 I'm SO glad I got one!!!  This IS the only one I have of us and the boys!
This face says "Oh man!  I don't want to leave yet!"  :)

We had a GREAT visit.  Never long enough...we always want one more day!  It was time to head back home though - long drive ahead of us and a full Sunday coming!  What a GREAT Thanksgiving week!

Friday, November 23, 2012

My Sisters

Kimberly, Kelli, Katy, Kristen

I am so thankful for these three ladies.  One of the greatest gifts in my life is that God blessed me with three sisters.  We are all very different.  We have very different lives.  Some of us are living in different stages of life.  We live in different areas.  Our husbands are all very different.  We have different likes, different dislikes, different personalities, different stresses, different thresholds :).  But we all love the Lord.  I am SO thankful for that.  All of these ladies are godly ladies that are serving the Lord with all of their heart.  We all love our husbands and our families.  I am SO thankful for that.  We are serving the Lord in the ministries and areas that He has placed us in.  And we all REALLY love our Mom too!  Our life growing up wasn't always the easiest.  We didn't always get along (believe ME!!).  But the relationship I have with them now as a grown up gives me hope on those days when my kids are fighting and picking at each other!  

It was SUCH a blessing to be ALL together - even if it was only 48 hours - for Thanksgiving this year.  It gets harder and harder as our families get bigger and I don't take for granted the effort and sacrifice that it requires to be all together. But it really is one of the things I am MOST thankful for this year!  I love you girls!

How to Ice Skate in Florida

Remember how we struck out on Thanksgiving night?  Well, we made another attempt on Friday night.  The Oates had to get back on the road by 6 pm, so we headed downtown to try one more time - and we were in luck!!  The rink was open!!  It's not real ice -'s Florida people!  It's this little square area with wax flooring...but real ice skates so it feels sort of legitimate!  The kids thought it was fantastic and were so excited!

 Last year when the Oates came to visit Kelli, they did this and it was one of the highlights for several of the kids. Matthew wouldn't let go of a hand last year - but this year he was ready to go all by himself!

 Of course the little ones wanted to try to!  Here's Caleb with his big brothers
 Joseph. He cracks me up.  He's a very cautious little guy. But doesn't want to be left out of ANYTHING. Especially anything his cousins are doing.  So when he heard Caleb and Callie say they wanted to try it, he chimed in as well.  As soon as he got out on the "ice", he turned his head back to Kelli and started panicking saying "I think I'm going to fall!" But Mary came to rescue and kept him on going and he was fine!!!  He loved it!  :)
 Luke was so sweet to help Callie figure it out...

 These two were baby sitting  for us!

 Callie was ready to be on her own!!  :)

 Josiah's getting fancy now!  Trying his hand at skating backwards :)

 UH OH!!!!
 Here come our husbands....they escaped to Starbucks for a little bit :)
 While we were waiting for the "snow" to fall, Caleb finally passed out.  Poor guy.  He went full throttle this week.
 All bathed and jammies on and ready for a movie!
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever!!  LOVE this movie!!!  First time my kids ever saw it - GREAT movie!  :)  (And was a little too close to call with my own childrens Christmas musical coming up!!)