Family Picture

Family Picture

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Christmas Day 2014

In spite of sickness, we had a special Christmas this year.  Sometimes it takes pulling away from the world, and the busyness of even the best of things, for us to truly focus on the most important things.
We celebrated this year with a sharper, more intentional, appreciation of His coming. 
 His humble birth...Immanuel...God with us.  
He is our hope.  An anchor for our souls, not only at Christmas, but always.  We are so glad He came.  So thankful He provides for us, gently leads us,  restores us, comforts us, heals us and bountifully blesses us.

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!  
Luke 2:14

It has also been a wonderful thing to witness Amy coming to understand the Christmas story.  Hearing her and Anna's voices singing Christmas carols and quoting scripture from the the events surrounding Jesus' birth was one of my favorite gifts this year.

When watching the polar express with Amy on Christmas eve, I was so moved by Amy's response to one of the opening scenes of the movie.  
When the boy comes out of his home and is offered a ride on the train, 
Amy commented:  Momma, is he coming back home?  Cause if he is not coming back home, I don't want to watch this movie.  It will be a bad movie.
My response:  He will absolutely be going back to his home, all the children will be going back home to their families.  They will ride on the train to the north pole, stay for just a little while, then go back home.
Amy's comment:  Are you sure?
My response:  Yes, I am sure because I have seen this movie before.
This movie will end well.
Amy's response:  Ok momma, I want to watch it then.
My response:  All will be well with you also my sweet Amy, because you are home with us, and we are your forever family and no matter where you go, you will ALWAYS come back home.
Amy's final response as she settled under her blanket with comfort and reassurance so we could start the movie back:  Good!!! 
Then she snuggled up close between Scott and myself and enjoyed the movie.

Because Amy has been so sick with high fevers and flu symptoms, she slept in bed with me all week and I was pretty much by her side most of the time during the day other than when she dozed.  I fed her crushed popsicles with a spoon, a few goldfish crackers at a time and would keep cool wash cloths on her forehead. Her attachment to me has been taken to a deeper level.  I see it even now that she is much better.  She stays close to me throughout the day.  Wanting to be wherever I am.  And as anyone who has adopted an older child before knows, this is a very good thing indeed.  
And if it took the mean and nasty Influenza A to tighten our mother/daughter bond with even greater strength, then we will count this as one of our most wonderful Christmas blessings for 2014.

Anna's favorite gifts were her sewing machine and art kit

Amy's favorite gifts were all things "Frozen" and her art kit

Stocking stuff, candy and light up, soft, fluffy snowballs

Amy loves anything that lights up!
Ice skating Elsa! Unwrapping wonderful Christmas presents trumps the flu!

One more favorite, a cookie press

Mandarin Dress and matching purple headband for Chinese New Year
Amy loves the character of Elsa and can sing most of the songs from the movie.  She got the sing along version of Frozen and sang her heart out when we watched it together Christmas night.

Wesley likes his new pajama's and soft blanket

Will about to unwrap his soft blanket

Thankful for a nice Christmas day even as 5 out of the six of us did not feel 100%

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The Week Before Christmas

We love the "getting ready" for Christmas almost as much as the big day itself.  Our festivities got side lined this year when sickness hit.  We gave up much of the baking, crafting and our strep throat for Anna and Influenza Type A confirmed on Monday for Amy.....wiped out most of our plans for the week.  We did have plenty of pajama time, Christmas movies and music, read some Christmas books, and colored Christmas pictures.  We have enjoyed the beauty of our Christmas tree and decorations as there is no place like home during the holidays.....and when you're feeling under the weather.
We got to witness this flock of birds landing in our woods

My morning quiet time on the porch

Thankfully some early gingerbread men before getting sick

Enjoying our chocolate chip cookie dough gingerbread man

Down for the count, My sick sweeties

Several really rough days for my Amy as she battled high fevers

Nannie and PaPa sent food and presents for a couple of sad girls who were missing our family party

More smiles as they are thankful for new toys 
Amy showing signs of improvement as she plays also, but she has to take breaks to rest.
Quietly playing with magnatiles from Nannie and PaPa as still not feeling well

Christmas eve still too sick to venture out.  Read our Bible from Luke and had our own Christmas eve service.  Then watched Polar Express.  Amy's first time to see it and she loved it.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas activities

We are enjoying the time before Christmas as we do crafts, read Christmas books and enjoy Christmas music.  Amy is beyond excited this year as she understands what Christmas is all about. Anna has always loved Christmas time so we are enjoying these days ......just need the clock to slow down as we don't want it all to go by too fast! 

Anna and Amy got to open a present early

Christmas Pajamas
Amy wanted the wooden train we made to be included with her photo.  She loves the red light in it!

Anna loves to paint

Amy painting her snowman, but the hammering is still her favorite part!

Santa just happened to be at Home Depot

The finished yard stakes after we spayed them with clear urethane and put them where we can see them outside our breakfast room window

Silly breakfast on our Christmas China

Helping wrap presents and special delivery to put under the tree

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Sledding without Snow

The girls are great at coming up with new things to do.  We go outside most afternoons as I like to walk and they need fresh air and exercise also.  This is the latest form of exercise play for them.  

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Week of Thanksgiving Family Photos

Lots of fun and good times with all of our family on two Thanksgiving gatherings.
My parents and all the grand kids plus great grand kids

My parents, siblings and all their children 

Silly Xmas photos as Wesley and Will humor me with ugly Christmas sweaters

Reminds me of the good ole days

Scott's parents and grandchildren plus great grandchildren

Scotts parents sister and brother in law, missing two brothers Blake and Casey plus family

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Almost Turkey Time

We have been busy making Thanksgiving treats.  Wishing you all a very blessed Thanksgiving Day!

Anna does the eyes, beak and legs with icing

Amy unwraps the Reeses cups
Turkey cupcakes ready for Thanksgiving

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Pumpkin Bread

We took an afternoon to bake pumpkin bread for the girls' teachers at our homeschool program.
I think it is important for them to be a part of a service project as we show appreciation for others.
Anna is a good little baker.  She cracked the eggs, ten to be exact, and spooned in the pumpkin, plus did a lot of measuring of the dry ingredients.  Amy likes to help but she also likes the quick jobs, so she poured in the secret ingredients of vanilla and butterscotch puddings.  Both girls helped to make the loaves pretty with ribbons and special notes.  Before it is all said and done ( not all in one day) we will have made 12 loaves of pumpkin bread with a loaf or two for ourselves to keep as well! By the last batch, Anna could pretty much make pumpkin bread all by herself. My house smells like autumn!

Ready to deliver tomorrow