Saturday, December 27, 2008

all was merry and bright!

So, I know I have several sets of grandparents awaiting these photos so I decided to post Christmas before I do Gennie's birthday. Sorry, Beans, but you'll just have to wait.

We were part of the Worship team for the Community Christmas Eve service this year so we had to be ready to play by 5pm that night. We had a good time and this year it was my dad's turn to bring the Word . . . each minister gets to take a turn . . . and they were expecting more than 400 people from the churches in town. After we were thru there we spent a little time driving around town to look at the Christmas lights . . . one of my fav traditions. We ended up at my parents' house for hot cocoa and a few presents. The kids opened their gifts from Auntie Krista and Uncle Joey (a helicopter and a trunk full of dress up fairy clothes), and their new jammies from us:
Josiah discovered the Santa that slides down the chimney . . . that little guy has been in our family forever, an Avon special from the days of yore when my mom's mom sold Avon and all our presents came from there . . . Krista and I spent many hours each holiday season running him up and down that pole . . . so much so that now he skids the first half and falls the rest of the way, plopping unceremoniously on that little chunk that's supposed to be the chimney:He was quite impressed. And now, since Blogger is being a royal pain in my butt and not letting me upload photos, I'll have to save Christmas morning for another post. Stay tuned!

Monday, December 22, 2008

she went ahead and grew up .... and we don't know when it happened.

My darling baby girl,

You turned 5 years old today.
I can't believe it. I thought it was just the other day that we were on our way to the hospital to meet you for the first time. We didn't really know what we were supposed to do with you, and didn't even know if you were a boy or a girl yet. Then the doctor stood up from behind the drape and announced, "You have a beautiful, healthy baby girl! What's her name?" And I whispered, "Her name is Genesis."
You were the first child in our family. You've been nothing but a blessing since that day. Your gentleness and eager personality is a treasure and you are such a help, especially with your brother around these days. Now, let's not kid ourselves; you have your moments when your dad and I just look at each other and say, "What was she thinking?!" But we are so happy to have you in our lives and I love starting each day with you whispering, "Loooooove you!"

Have a fabulous day, beautiful. God truly blessed us when He presented you to us.

Love, Mom

Sunday, December 21, 2008

it's okay if kids say the "darndest things" . . . just not in front of Grandaddy!

So, apparently Josiah has finally developed a conscience. Gone are the days of innocent little boy just exploring his world. He knows when he's disobeying. And when he's been caught.

This morning at church he was running around during our worship team practice, following his Grandaddy around watering the church plants. Grandaddy went back to the kitchen to refill his pitcher and Josiah became interested in the drinking fountain in the hallway. He knows how to push the button to turn it on but is in no way tall enough to reach it to get a drink. But never mind that; he just enjoys pushing the button and watching the water. He's been told a bunch of times not to do it, and after a few reminders each week, he usually loses interest and is on to his next adventure.

Grandaddy started back down the hallway and as he passed Josiah, he shrugged his shoulders a little to loosen his neck muscles. Apparently Josiah wasn't expecting him . . . and was "caught" plotting his next assault on the water fountain . . . because he jumped and announced, "Crap!"

Keep in mind, Josiah has yet to speak much. He can say "more" & "dad" & "that" & "pop" but not much else. He doesn't even say "mom" with any regularity. We usually understand what he is trying to get across by putting together the clues but he's not actually saying words very often.

What perfect timing! His first bad word . . . well, bad word for a toddler . . . and Grandaddy gets to witness it!

That's going in the baby book!

ETA: In the photo above he wasn't actually in trouble for playing with the Christmas lights . . . he was just helping daddy stretch them out . . . but the look on his face is just about the same one he gets when he's caught.

Friday, December 19, 2008

because I love my sister, demanding though she may be....

I decided I'd better update the blog. I've been so busy getting things ready for the last-day-of-school-before-the-holidays for both Gennie and Kev that I've barely left my spot at the end of the dining room table all week. I made these card gift sets for all three of Gennie's teachers as well as both of Kev's secretaries at the school. Each one had 12 cards and was a different color scheme but mostly the same card designs - no need to reinvent the wheel. And each came with envelopes all tucked inside the little "purse" holder. I couldn't find a paper I liked to go with the orange set so I made up a patterned paper of my own. No, wait, I didn't "make" the paper, I just stamped the pattern. It was a lot of work but totally fun, and as Valerie reminded me, teachers always love little handmade stuff but never have the time to make it themselves so I guess that's where I come in. And yes, I went thru 5 tape roller refills, no joke!Also, Gennie's Christmas program at church was last Sunday. She was a shepherd this year, "because I had to be a sheep last year and I don't want to do that again, Mom." She didn't have any speaking lines yet which was probably good because she started getting all stage-fright-y the night before and probably wouldn't have made it thru the program. She did get to hold a sheep and a "staff", tho!

I'm not sure what that face is that she's making but whatever. . . kept her from freaking out and that's the big thing. After the program was over Dad got up to say a few words in the way of a sermon and since there was no children't church . . . the kids were all in the program . . . I gave her my little camera to play with to keep her occupied. The result was a camera card full of photos of her sunday school papers as well as the obligatory self portrait:

And photos of us not paying attention to the pastor. Don't tell my dad.
ETA: There you are, Krista. Now you don't have to look at Josiah's sad face anymore. :P

Monday, December 8, 2008

supposedly it's a peek into my future.

So, I began my day with this. I keep the giant boxes of baking soda in the pantry to sprinkle when I vacuum . . . the joy of all dog owners, right? . . . and Josiah discovered my stash this morning. I was on the phone with my mom for two seconds (that's what we moms all say, right? "I only left the room/turned around/was completely occupied by something non-child-related for a second and . . . ) and was greeted with this scene. He didn't start crying until I hollered at him, and I must give him props for his penitent-ness because I believe he really was upset even if it was only because he got caught. I especially like the way a little bit of the baking soda actually landed in the bowl he so thoughtfully put out to catch the fun white stuff pouring out of the box at an alarming rate.

Kev's comment . . . after I called him and regaled him with the latest adventure, and the laughing and sputtering subsided . . . was, "And to think, this is just a glimpse into your future as the mom of a boy." Thanks for the pick-me-up, babe. Love ya.

In other news, we went this past weekend to get our Christmas tree. More photos to come, but here's a couple to whet the ol' whistle:

Thursday, December 4, 2008

i'm so excited about these that i just had to put the rest on here.

So, here are the rest of the portraits Val did of our family. I'm still editing my way thru the rest of the family but these are going into our Xmas cards this year so I wanted them done and ready to print asap.

Love 'em, love 'em. love 'em! The family, I mean. And the portraits!

Monday, December 1, 2008

McC-Ander-Brown family 2008

I just got done downloading the 304 portraits Valerie shot for us to get a good family portrait. No, they weren't all of just this pose . . . I'll post more later when I get them edited . . . and they were of the different family groups, etc, but I had to show you all this one. Val did a spectacular job for us and I'm so thankful for a close friend who is willing to stand out in the ridiculous WY wind while we get organized. Thanks again, friend!

More to come! Stay tuned.

turkey day.

So, we had a fabulous turkey day. My sister Krista and her husband Joey came as well as my Aunt Ruthie and Uncle Frank so we had a great houseful. Here's a peek at our day:

We started defrosting the turkey(s) on Monday because our fridge is freakishly cold and we wanted to make sure they would defrost in time. By Wed morning they . . . I was afraid a 12 pounder wouldn't be enough for all of us so we added in a whole turkey breast . . . were still frozen solid so we put them in a water bath to speed it up. Our sink is too shallow to soak a turkey in and Kev thought the idea of floating them in our bathtub was too weird . . . he had flashbacks to that Seinfeld episode when Kramer makes a whole meal while he's bathing and that was too much for him . . . so we filled up a cooler with water and let them float in there instead. The kids loved it and kept checking on them all day.

The whole point of having the dinner at our house was so I could cook my first Thanksgiving meal. We've been married since 2000 and I still hadn't had to do my own yet. But . . . when it was time to prep the turkeys and get them into the oven I was up to my armpits in Pumpkin Cheesecake and Apple Pie so Kev came in to help. I told him what needed to be done to get it buttered and seasoned and into the oven . . . and he did all the work!! I STILL HAVEN'T HAD TO MAKE THE TURKEY!!!! Eight years and going strong! And Kev wants Chinese for Christmas dinner so I think I'll make it thru this holiday season scott-free!

The rolls:

And the Before-Food:

And the boys watching football:

Josiah joined in . . . good thing he already knew "Touchdown" so he could "teach" Uncle Frank!

And we even got the guys to help peel potatoes:

Our table decorations . . . Gennie, Ruthie and I made a turkey for each place setting.

I totally thought I wasn't in any photos since I'm usually the one behind the camera but apparently I had some help this year because I turned up a bunch!

And the pies. I've had that recipe for pumpkin cheesecake forever and had never tried it. Freaking amazing! I'll keep that one in the arsenal for sure. We also had plain pumpkin (P) and coconut pumpkin (C) and Apple (for Kev who is decidedly anti-gourd in his dessert preferences).

Anyway, it was a great day and we had a blast eating and hanging out and just being family. I'm so thankful for the family I belong to and hope to have many more years like this to come!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

at long last...

So, here's the rest of my favs from this session. Thanks for your patience, Mel. Hope you think they were worth the wait!
And nothing against the yummy little bundle of Murdoch who happens to be absent from this next photo, but this is my all-time favorite for today:
Definitely going on my website! Thanks again, guys!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

how true it is .... you buy them the toys and all they want to play with is the box.

So, the people who sold us our house left this giant exercise ball in the basement. It's not really a treasure as it's mostly flat but the kids were thrilled to pieces to find it when we moved in. We let them keep it around for no particular reason except that we just couldn't face the screaming we know would ensue if it disappeared. It's got just enough air in it to bounce if they are both on it at the same time. Let's demonstrate how to play together:

Ahhhh, how sweet they are. Then, when your pain-in-the-butt sister decides to pull the ball out from under you:

But he's no dummy. She forgets he catches on fast and can return the favor:

Then he walks in front of you just as mom takes the photo:
At least we can be blessed by the fact that they play so well together. And he's finally old enough that the torture comes from both sides!