Tuesday, December 20, 2011

'Tis The Season To Be Jolly and Joyous . . .

Ginger bread houses!  I love that you can see how much they want to eat them in the last picture. hehe. 

Christmas party at church.  Even though Ben-Ben was nervous, he loved seeing Santa.  I loved the "family style" dinner we had. . . and Benjamin and I were surrounded by family.  Delish.  The music was beautiful, and I felt the Spirit.  I love our Marquette ward (congregation)!!!  (Ethan stayed home with Anna and Caleb who were not feeling 100% . . . we want to be especially careful again this winter season.  Pobrecitos.)   

The primary kids dressed up and sang the Nativity song.  Benjamin was the cutest little Shepard you've ever seen.  :)  I like how he's kind of checking everyone else out instead of singing the song (which he didn't know). . . typical three year old, I guess.  hehe.  Oh, and that's me playing the piano. 

Aaaaaand . . . here are two photos of the new house.  Of course it will look cuter when it's summertime and green.  And the backyard pic does a pretty good job showing our awesome yard and deck, but I couldn't get it all in one pic.

We've been working super hard over at the house painting, ripping out carpet (to get to the original maple hardwood floors), fixing, painting some more.  It's been pretty all consuming lately, but it will be so worth it when we're ready to move in . . . and it will look so much better/cleaner!  We feel very blessed with how everything worked out for this house, the deal we got, and the loan we were able to qualify for.  We're just very excited to move in to our own place again and have space for everything and everyone.  But first, more work!  (I'm waiting to show inside pictures for when we're done painting, finishing the hardwood floors, and all moved in.  Then I'll do before and afters.)

So, I kept putting off my Christmas shopping this year, but finally did it last Thursday evening.  (I've never done it this late - I'm usually finished by early November!)  Every time I'd go to the store it would be to pick up house fixing/painting related items.  Then I'd walk in and remember that it's Christmas time, and that I still hadn't done any Christmas shopping.  So, I finally stopped putting it off.  I did it all in one go, multiple stores, and all done in 2 1/2 hours.  I was pleasantly surprised with how fast everything went.  (I hadn't bought one single present before this trip.)  I got all the stocking stuff and presents for the kids (we keep gift giving pretty simple), Ethan's stocking stuff (we're only doing stockings this year for each other to keep it simple and cheap since so much is going in to the house right now), my mom and dad's presents, Ethan's sister, and my brother.  Whew.  Ethan still needs to pick out a couple things for me, and I told him he can pick out presents for his parents this year (he ALWAYS does last minute shopping).  And done!

So, life is pretty busy with trying to get the house ready to move in by January 7th (that's our goal . . . that WILL be met :).  But, I'm still trying to take the time to enjoy holiday cheer with my sweet family.  Like - Muppet Christmas Carol, ginger bread houses, the kiddos Christmas programs at school (pictures to come), watching the Nativity story for family night, etc.  (No sledding yet, since there's even less snow on the ground than the pictures above.  Geesh!)  Hope you're all finding ways to enjoy this beautiful Christmas season!     

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