Saturday, January 3, 2015

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!

I have spent the last couple of days getting caught up posting on the blog. Thankfully, there's a feature that enables me to sneak a couple of posts in where they belong (as in, I had not yet posted pictures from a beautiful walk in the woods from October!!).  This blog serves as a sort of memory book for me since otherwise things get piled into a box in my closet.

I really have no regrets, though.  I spent much time trying to savor this Christmas season. I purposely got up early to enjoy sitting by the light of the Christmas tree, being reminded of the true Light of this world.  It was a different Christmas...the first without my beautiful grandparents. For as many years as I can remember, I have set up Santa's workshop at their house. Sure, it made keeping things hidden easier, but even more wonderful was the time spent at my grandparents' home.  This year, I instead set up shop at my Aunt & Uncle's home, & it was wonderful to get to spend time with them. It was a good reminder that the best way to honor old traditions when they are no longer possible is to create new ones inspired by the old.

Kaelee took Kaya to see her first Nutcracker performance.  I love that my older children spend special time with their younger siblings.

Trash the Kitchen, 2014 Edition (aka frosting the cutouts!)

This is the best gift...a full house....

...and all of our children in one place.

The obligatory Christmas morning picture on the steps had to be relocated to the basement stairs this year to fit everyone.  How fun is it that they ALL slept in the basement together to keep up with tradition since none of the bedrooms would accommodate everyone?!

It's so fun to watch the kids play together with new toys.

This year we avoided most electronics & went for interactive toys.

Grandma blessed everyone with matching aprons.

These two were especially thrilled because they love helping in the kitchen.

Every year since our first visit to the zoo lights six years ago we say we're going to go again, but it just doesn't happen for one reason or another.  This year, we had planned to go once Kearsten arrived home only to have to cancel the plans due to the flu.  Instead of giving up the plan altogether, we went after Christmas on New Year's Eve Eve.  I'm so glad we did!!

Big brothers really are the best!

For New Year's Eve, Kaelee bought the kids all kinds of fun stuff to get into the spirit of things.

They were so glad when Kaelee finally returned from her dinner date to spend the evening ringing in the new year.

Somehow, Kendi got Daddy to sport some sparkles & a crown.

Getting ready for the new year was fun, but this family was super-stoked for New Year's Day & the big game...We are Buckeyes through & through!!

Family Time = Crazy Times = The Best of Times!!!


Sharon said...

Love all these pics!

Alicia said...

I love the pictures too. And I agree, the best gift is a full house with all my kids home at the same time. Sending New Year's Hugs your way!

Laurel said...

LOVE all of the family pics!

It's been over 5 years since we have had the whole family together. So sad.