Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas 2008!

The BIGGEST and BEST news of all is Jake (my oldest brother) proposed to his girlfriend Angela! We are so excited that Jake found Angela and can't wait for her to become an official part of our family... one single brother left besides Griffin.

On Christmas Eve I had all my siblings over for our traditional Christmas Eve ritual. I make my Mom's classic potato salad that she used to make every year. It's a family fave. I wish I could eat some right now!

We had 2 very excited little ones!

Every year we act out the nativity on Christmas Eve and last month my sewing group made nativity costumes. It was a lot of work. I actually cut patterns while others sewed because noone trusted me on a machine but I'm so glad we did it because my family will enjoy these for years to come. (sure beats last years silky blankets)

a wiseman and shepherd

weston the donkey

mary and joseph

Everyone in costume... a cow, 3 wiseman (jason is holding a martinelli's in his hand by the way), joseph and mary, the angel, a sheep and shepherd, donkey in front. I was the narrator but I do have one more shepherd costume for whomever would like to join next year! Thanks to my family. They were all troopers especially Jason... can't you tell he loves our traditions?!

The next tradition is everyone opens pjs to wear on Christmas morning. Avaree and Weston already got their pjs so they opened new bedtime stories. We set our stockings out and treats for Santa and his reindeer and put the kids to bed so Santa could come!

The rule on Christmas morning is everyone has to gather in my room first before they are allowed to look at the tree or their stockings. We have a family prayer before and then all go out together to see what Santa brought.

Santa brought Avaree a big girl bike!

Weston didn't care what Santa brought him... he was happy with the the spongebob square pants bandaids in his stocking and the skittles.

This girl now has more little pet shop than she knows what to do with. They entertain her for hours though and she plays so cute with them.

Baylee gave very thoughtful gifts this year. Jason loves to fish and his tackle box was old and nasty. Baylee bought him a new tackle box and cleaned out his old one and organized all his fishing gear in this new one! For me, she put little notes on all my gifts... for example... she gave me an apple slicer that I mentioned I wanted months ago and had forgotten about and along with it was a note that said, "you make my life simpler and better." So thoughtful! I would NOT have survived this Christmas without her either... she wrapped almost all of the presents. She was my lifesaver!

Bay and Griff got their much anticipated Ipods.

It was a WHITE Christmas. In fact it was a blizzard. We hardly slept on Christmas Eve because the wind was so loud against our house. It sure was pretty though.

Look at those cheeks... it was TOO cold to sled.

Lastly... Weston with his new truck in the background that he pushes around ALL day. I took this picture right before his nap. Look how tired he looks... this boy needs his sleep! Some days he takes 4 to 5 hour long naps. It's nice to get a break but I can't do anything out of the house because heaven for bid if this boy doesn't get his sleep. Oh life with a fiesty 2 year old! Avaree is fiesty too... I guess I have Jason to thank for that.
Happy New Year Everyone!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas...

from our family to yours! We hope everyone has a wonderful day celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Gatherings

Gathering #1 was with my favorite gals from the neighborhood!

Good food, girls only, relaxing, lots of laughing, and the $10 gift exchange makes this one of my favorite parties of the year!

If you could only hear Rachelle's laugh. I will record it one day. It's contagious.

Gathering #2- lunch with old friends in town.

Gathering #3- party at my house with my highschool girlfriends and their families.

I made Cafe Rio burritos, then we opened presents with oven mits, did a gift exchange, and stayed up way too late... 4 a.m to be exact. Time flies when you are having fun.

Look at all the kids and our group is only growing.


I could keep little Bentley all to myself.

The BEST news of the week is this little guy TY is a perfect match for his sister Emma!! We are so excited. Now we are praying for a successful transplant.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy Bday to my Momma.

Today my Mother would be 55. I can't pass up an oppurtunity to write about her! My tribute last year was perfect. I really recommend you go back and read it. This year and every year... is a little bittersweet for me. Christmas time reminds me of my Mom... the traditions, the songs, the feeling in the air, her birthday, and all the Christmas memories we have together. Christmas is a time for families! I remember her last Christmas I had to help Santa Clause for her because she was too sick. That night was tough for me because I somewhat realized I was going to have to give up being a child and give up having a mother around who always made things so special. I didn't want to let that go. Little did I know that almost 5 months later I would really have to step it up.

This past month, more than ever, I have been overwhelmed with the shoes I have to fill. And at the same time I feel so blessed that I get to fill them. I feel so lucky that I get to be the one who is cheering Baylee and Griffin on at their games, and be the one who is amazed by their good grades, and be the one who gets to speak at Baylee's YW in Excellence. The responsibility is overwhelming but they are such blessings in my life and I know my Mom is proud of them.

Jason makes fun of my family because we have so many "traditions." He doesn't come from a very traditional family but our silly traditons brought my family together and we are close today because of them (because we can't break a tradition)! I used to be horrible at taking pictures but I found the few times we did take pictures was around the holidays. It's such a special time.

This picture was one of my Mom's last birthdays. She had just had her spleen removed because it was full of cancer. It was a brutal surgery. They cut down the center of her body to clean out as much cancer as they could. She didn't feel well but she got up to celebrate because that is what we do! I love how Griffin's arm is around her.

This picture was taken that same Christmas. I was in town from California because Jason and I lived away at that time. She couldn't pass up any moment to spend with me. I should have made her stay in bed but she got up and showered and pretended like she felt well so we could do things together that we liked to do. Doesn't she look good for just having a major surgery? I remember that day like it was yesterday. I even remember the weather. I miss our conversations.

Jason, Baylee, Griffin and I were playing Loaded Questions the other night and one of the questions was "if you had one wish what would it be?" We all gave the same answer and "wished that our Mom was still alive." We miss her but we are so grateful for the Mom she was and the traditions we get to carry on.

I recommend starting a tradition with your family and sticking to it. Your kids will have memories they will always remember and cherish. Merry Christmas... 5 more days.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Santa Baby

We went to a Christmas party over the weekend and Santa was there! Avaree took her time with Santa very seriously...


telling him she would like "little pet shop and little einstein toys"

picture time

even weston sat for a pic... no tears this year!

food is a must.

i had to sit on santa's lap too!

and so did baylee, jason refused.

We also had the WHOLE Gibbons crew for a few days. Unfortunately, when Emma went in for her treatment on Monday they found out that she needs a bone marrow transplant. This picture was taken right before the whole family headed off to the hospital to get all the kids tested to see if any of them are a possible match. We are keeping our fingers crossed. They are all being so BRAVE!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

play date @ classic

it's winter time and the kids needed to get out! so we went with our friends to classic to get out their energy. the kids rode bikes and scooters, bounced, and played arcade games. then we hit up chick-fil-a for lunch. thanks for driving us around, jackie. it got a little crazy with 4 little ones screaming in the car but other than that it was a successful playdate.

ruby shared her BIG bike with avaree. we are grateful. we know what avaree needs to ask santa for christmas.

throwing balls was the highlight of weston's day.

surprise, surprise... these girls actually played their own game of ice hockey.