Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thankfulness and Playfulness...

"Turkey Lurkey"

This little guy, pictured above, is something we've been working on each Family Night in November. Anna and I made him at the beginning of November, and we've been adding feathers to him since. It's pretty self explanatory, and I love the variety we had in what we were thankful for. We named everything from Daddy to Blocks to Sunbeams (Anna's class at church). As a family we named 50 things we are thankful for and it really helped us have gratitude in our hearts all during the month. We focused on recognizing that all we have been blessed with in our lives comes from God, and that we owe Him thanks for everything. We also talked with Anna a little about Pilgrims and Native Americans, but I think that was pretty much lost on her.

1) Auntie Ash reading Anna and Ben a book. 2) Tumble Time with Uncle Stuart 3) Ethan, Stu, and Becca - sporting some very cute bangs - lounging after the feast.
So, we had lots of visitors this week. Yay! Auntie Ashley and Uncle Joe stopped in on Wednesday on their way down to Indianapolis. They could only stay a couple hours, but we managed to fit in some story time, a little dance session, a walk in the woods, and some playing. Anna was so excited to see both of them, but had some "girl stuff" she only wanted Auntie Ashley to hear. Hehe. And Ben-Ben warmed up to both of them right away, and even started calling Joe by his name. Nice. Before they arrived, Anna had lots of questions for me about Joe. I think she was just trying to figure out what a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship means. So funny. In the end, she thought she should start calling Joe, Uncle Joe. Cute.

Benjamin, James, Beth, Stuart, Rachel, Rebecca, Anna (hiding), and Angela eating dinner at Cracker Barrel.
My sister, Beth, and her family came down to visit from Wednesday night through Thursday. It was so great seeing them. We had some fun game nights, yummy snacks, swimming at their hotel's pool, and a delicious Thanksgiving dinner at Cracker Barrel. I know I don't need to clarify, BUT: I feel totally comfortable cooking Thanksgiving dinner. I've made all the sides before, and think I could manage it even in my small kitchen. However, I didn't think it sounded appealing AT ALL to try and have all 9 of us eat a thanksgiving meal in our little apartment. (Our table seats four.) So, Cracker Barrel it was. It was good home cooking, seated next to a blazing fire. And it was crowded, but no wait. Perfect. I was surprised that only two people ordered the traditional Thanksgiving meal. A few even had breakfast...weird. After, we came back to our place for pies and a little more snacking. Friday, Beth and fam. took off to visit more down state friends.

1) Benjamin, Seth, and Natalie Jones. (Everyone thinks Seth and Ben-Ben look very similar.) 2) Cousins playing - Tyler, Sam, Ben, Allison, Seth, Griffin, and Sydney...with Linda taking pictures too. 3) Uncle John, Sam, and George making some music.

1) Me with my cousins-in-law Amber and Anna. 2) Natalie, Dan, Anna, Courtney, Cole riding on the golf cart. Allison and Sydney looking on. 3) Harry helping Anna try out the mandolin.
We also took a quick trip down to Fort Wayne to see some Joneses at the Saturday after Thanksgiving get shown above. It was so good to see everyone! It was so fun watching Anna and Benjamin play with their second cousins. We had a delicious Thanksgiving meal...for 30!! (And that is just a fraction of the Jones Clan.) We were able to catch up with family we hadn't seen in awhile. We also enjoyed a nice hike in the woods later in the day. Fun, fun! We are so blessed to have such a wonderful extended family. Thanks so much for having us Harry and Linda!
WELL, I won't go into too much detail, but I am so full of thanks. I recognize so many blessings and good things in my life, and I am grateful. (Just check "Turkey Lurkey" for the specifics. :) This was such a beautiful month full of thanksgiving and happiness. Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving as well!

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