Saturday, January 22, 2011

It's your birthday....

It's your birthday....
I know I am late because last week was your birthday!!


I can't believe he is 14 already! Seems like yesterday I was holding that baby in my arms!!

Ave actually turned 14 on the 16th but I have been so far behind in the blog I did not even think about putting the birthday post up then.


I decided to save it until all his celebrations were done.....

We had the normal birthday dinner last week. Avery is so easy at times. When I asked him where he wanted to go for his dinner (it is always his choice) he chose Red Robin!

That caught me off guard. I expected something big. If I got to choose I would say Melting Pot or Fogo De Chao (two places I have never been). I guess I should be glad he is so easy when it comes to stuff like this.

So we went and then last night he had 3 of his buddies over to hang out and spend the night.

Another easy choice. He even told me that he didn't want a cake or gifts or anything. Well, on the cake I told him that was not an option ... what better excuse to have cake????

Hard to believe that this time next year I will have yet another driver in the house. How crazy is that?? Really, am I old enough to have 2 kids that drive????

Gotta love the candle or maybe that is a really big lighter!

Kennedi stayed up late so she could have a piece of the cake. There was no way she was going to bed until she got some. She had seen it earlier and asked to have a piece every 10 minutes or so. I told her when daddy got home we would have cake. She doesn't forget a thing! As soon as Chris walked in the door she went over to the counter and said, "daddy cake"!

another nice surprise was that Conner was home with us!! He had plans to go out but they fell through and so we were able to spend a little time with him. Well... he was home at least, even if we only saw him when we had cake because he was downstairs on his games most the time. But he was home!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Christmas #3

We are now up to the final Christmas celebration of the season!! On December 30th we went down to Chris' parents to celebrate with them. They get together as a family on Christmas Day also but we are about 3 hours away so that would mean being on the road all day. Plus The boys switch from my house to their dads in the middle of the day Christmas so we find another day to tack onto the Christmas season.

It was a beautiful day out. The big boys were with their dad when we went down but Dakota was there to celebrate too.

One of the things that I got for Christmas from Chris was a lens for my camera. Some of these pictures were taken with that lens. I love it!! Now to take a few photography classes to help me even more.

We left the camera outside when we were opening gifts and did not realize it until after they were opened but we got some great shots outside of the kids playing.

Meme and R

MeMe and 3 of her grand kids

Dakota swinging. You can tell he is concentrating by the tongue hanging out.

The Big Girl!

Daddy and his girls. Tried to get Dakota in this one but he was all pictured out.

So I may be a little biased but what a beautiful face!!

Yup, more proof that I was there. A picture of K and me.

Papa and R

Papa and 3 of his grand kids...

Dakota was rockin out to his paper jams guitar


Christmas Afternoon with the family....

I think the best way to describe my family's Christmas Celebration is best done by pictures... With a group as big as ours it is very hard to tell about them all in words.

Some of my nephews in their "ugly Christmas sweaters". Please keep in mind that these sweaters all belong to my 2 sisters. The questions are 1) Do my sister's still wear these? Hope not and 2) Why do these fit their kids so well?? You just never know what will happen when we get together.

Kennedi sipping her drink... all I can say is that it better be milk!

Conner waiting his turn in the White Elephant

Avery opened this in the white elephant... Sad thing is that its what he asked for as a Christmas gift... we are all still wondering why?!?!

My boys!!

Ryleigh in her 1st Christmas outfit...

Kennedi and her Godparents

Ryleigh and her Godparents

Here is Ryleigh, her cousin and Aunt...

We were finally able to take an almost complete family picture! Missing are my big boys (who had already gone to their dads for the night), and baby billy (who was asleep)....

Christmas Morning 2010

This year was a special Christmas... It was R's 1st Christmas AND we were able to have the big boys wake up here Christmas morning. The down side of blended families, you do not always get the normal holidays so you make do with what you have!!

Christmas morning at the house was the first of two Christmas celebrations for the day and the first of 3 total. We did not have Dakota with us this year on Christmas but I will post later on that. That was celebration 3 of 3.

Oh, the boys were so excited to be up early! Now when I say early I mean like 800. All the kids slept in. I guess that was the advantage of having teens and then a toddler that did not fully understand. I am sure we will not have the luxury of sleeping in next year!

K was good for about the first 4 gifts. After that she was done and just wanted to play. Sounds good. She had gifts for the next few days that she was able to open.

Daddy got to help K open a gift or two before she gave up.

Con got some practical things this year... a liner for the trunk of the mustang!!

And Ave ... WAR EAGLE!!! Need I say more??

Avery got his yearly Lego creation. Even at 14 he still loves to do the harder sets. When I say harder I mean like 2000-5000 pieces!! He has a bookshelf in his room with all the things he has made. It is incredible!! He can sit in his room for hours working on the latest one.

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this gift that Conner got!! A little background... he LOVE LOVE LOVES the Boston Red Sox... always has, well this is Ted Williams in his Red Sox uniform and under it is written... "Got will get you to the plate but once you are there, you are on your own"....

This one is just added as proof that I was at the Christmas Celebrations this year. I try to either avoid the camera or I am the one behind the camera. I am really trying to get into the pictures more so my kids know that I was around for all festivities!!

K LOVES to read. Here she is reading one of her many new books to the dog. I guess Midnight was the only one that would listen at this point.

R slept through most of the present opening but I had to take pictures of her when she was awake. Had to prove she did not completely sleep through her 1st Christmas!

Ahh the boys are getting ready to dig into their scavenger hunt prize. Each year Chris comes up with several clues for a scavenger hunt. At the end there is some sort of gift, some years big, some years small but the fun is watching the boys figure out where they have to go for the next clue.

This year even Chris got a surprise at the end!

Ok I think that wraps up Christmas morning at the house.... After this we relaxed a little more, the boys played some games after helping to clean up, and I got to cooking for Celebration #2 that afternoon.

Christmas Eve 2010

Lets see if I can remember way back when!! I am tempted to back post just my life will seem in order but I think I will just let that go and write as I think..

Christmas Eve was a day when my boys were supposed to spend the day with their dad and be home by 4 for Church and stay the night home. Well their dad and step-mom had to work Christmas Eve so the boys stayed with me and after church celebrated with their dad and came home in time to go to sleep. Have I mentioned how nice it is to have a child that drives??

Most of the day Christmas Eve we just sat around the house making lists of what all needed to be done that day and night to get ready for the big guy to visit. So I did some errand running, mostly Grocery store about 3 times!

The boys, girls and I went to mass in the afternoon. Chris had to work until 6 so he missed mass. I guess I technically did not make it to mass either. But I tried!! We went to the 4pm mass and of course it was a complete zoo. We knew that it would be going into it but I did not realize that there was NOT a nursery that mass. Ok insert some not so nice thoughts. So picture me, 2 teen boys, a 2 year old, 6 month old and no husband to help!! I sent my boys in to sit with my parents while the girls and I sat out in the narthex with the other 1000 people out there. Ok it was not really 1000 but it was so hot it seemed like there was that many.

Needless to say, we lasted about 15 minutes and left. The boys drove separately, have I said how nice it is to have a child that drives? So I guess I missed mass this year but hey you can only take so many "keep your toddler quiet and still please" looks. I guess I will make sure we go to a mass/church that has a nursery next year.

After mass I met everyone at my parents house to get a few pictures. Enter exhibit A...

A family photo. We really did not plan on the big boys and I dressing alike! Actually I did not even notice it until just now when I looked at the picture. Chris is wearing his very versatile scrub with a matching shirt to blend in with the girls' outfits! Very nice!

After the family photo the boys headed out to their Dads house for a few hours. Yes, once again, I am thankful for a child that drives!!!

Exhibit B...
The little girls!! I was going to put the 2-3 pictures we took before this one and the 1-2 after so you could see the progression of R going to the floor but decided against it. So here is one of the good shots of K holding R up.

When we got home the girls went to bed, we waited on the boys to get home and in the meantime the big guy paid a visit. I guess the kids were good this year. Hmmm I do not think anyone asked me about that!!

Exhibit C...
proof that there is a Santa and that he DID come visit this year.

Exhibit D...
My wonderful husband spends so much time making sure that the gifts from him are wrapped up tightly and neatly. Gotta love him!!

Exhibit E....

The Christmas Stockings that were way too heavy to hang by the chimney with care ... were filled with all the necessities: Deodorant, cologne, candy, gift cards, and of course... lottery tickets!

Exhibit F...
More proof that Santa paid a visit!!!
And apparently he found where the good stuff was kept. I guess he got tired of milk and hot chocolate.

I do believe that does wrap up Christmas Eve and the events that came with it.

A whole lotta catching up to do!!

Ahh here it is 10am on a Friday morning and I still have yet to take a shower but decided to catch up a little on what has been going on in the crazy house for the past month or even longer!

Lets see... I did post the Christmas letter but never Christmas... so here it goes!!