Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Jolly Guy Finds our House...

Cooper's simple desires came true- a fishing pole and a tractor with a trailer. He was so happy over it all! Neat to see how even just one thing would have been enough for him.

And sweet baby Ryder was just happy to be there :) Cooper happily helped him open his one present

Stephen is oh so thrilled with his beard trimmer ;) Any guesses how many uses this thing actually gets?

Christmas afternoon we traveled to Pocatello for dinner with Stephen's family, then to Idaho Falls to visit my Grandma in the hospital and have a family gift exchange at my sister's. Then about 10:30 we trucked across the desert to my parent's for the weekend. A full, but fulfilling day!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Early Christmas with Dad

This year Taron and Keaton got to be with their Mom for Christmas, so we celebrated with them a little earlier than normal... what kid would complain too much about that ;)

Love the looks on the boys faces over their gifts...

A casual shot of all the boys... Somehow when Ryder is lying on the floor playing, everyone crowds around him :)

What Christmas is Made of...

Christmas Eve jammies...

Smiles on adorable faces, stockings hung and advent calendars jumbled...

and Decorated Sugar Cookies...

After the cookies were done, I drove Taron and Keaton around to deliver some plates by knocking and running :) A fun time for all the kids- Cooper mostly played with a pile of dough (that seemed to keep growing, I might add) and Ryder just hung out in his bouncy chair, checking out the ribbons I had hung from our ceiling fan- good times!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Lights at Temple Square

This last weekend we traveled to Salt Lake to meet up with Stephen's family and spend the weekend together, specifically visiting Temple Square to see the lights. This trip was a gift from my amazing in-laws- we stayed overnight in a hotel, where all the kids swam and swam some more. Temple Square itself ended up being awfully crowded Saturday night, but it was enjoyable none the less. Nothing like spending the weekend before Christmas in a big city to reaffirm that we are country mice!

Stephen caught me off guard with this pic (obviously)... I kept little Ryder warm by wearing him in my baby pack, wrapping a thick blanket around him and wearing Stephen's coat, zipping it around him! It was so warm and fun! I love, love, love wearing my baby- beats a stroller by a long shot.

I had been telling Cooper about the Christus statue that we would see on this trip and he loved it! He also sat on Stephen's shoulders during the Nativity presentation on the grounds and watched intently. Stephen actually tied a rope around him like a leash just before we headed out of the parking lot and that was a brilliant idea! In the crushing amount of people, there would have been no other way to keep track of our busy little dude!

Thank You and thank you again, Bruce and Janie. This was a very thoughtful and meaningful gift- we really enjoy times that we all get to be together- they are too rare! We LOVE you!!

Monday, December 14, 2009


We love this short video and wanted to share... Click the link to watch!

The Christmas Spirit

Santa and more

This was Cooper's first time sitting on Santa's lap! He was so cute when Santa came walking in. He and several other kids ran up to him to give him a hug! Then Cooper got right in line to sit on his lap. He seemed unsure for only a split second and then went on and told him he wanted "a fishing pole"... Then he said about ten "thank you's" for his goodie bag. Gosh how special Christmas is as a little kid! That kind of innocent magic is rare...

Keaton said on the way home, "I didn't want to sit on his lap." I'd say they both look pretty uncomfortable! No one was forcing them, so I guess the goodie bag was worth it :) Fun to have pics of them all. No matter what mistakes we all make and weaknesses we all have, we appreciate Taron and Keaton being with us.

The minute I went to take a picture of Keaton with Ryder he started crying. I rather like this picture even though :)
Yesterday we took the boys to Pocatello for church so they could sing with the Primary during sacrament meeting. Coop was standing excitedly watching them. I had to watch from the foyer with Ryder but Stephen said that after the first of three songs Cooper said loudly, "good job!" And then when they got back to their seats, he said loudly again, "good job, brothers!" Kids make church intersting for sure :)

Coop laying in bed with Ryder this morning. Happy boys...
In other news.... a photo of Stephen and his bird after a successful flight is part of the current Jared Scott Outdoors photo contest. Click here and then scroll down to the second group of photos to vote for his!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Little Bits of "Magicness"...

Coops play Nativity mixed in with real one... just belongs

Making a "mountain" out of Christmas decor as I got things out of the storage boxes to decorate the tree.

Loving his advent calendar- makinga road out of it for his "flames"- the little red tractor in the background

Tired, but adroable Ryder taking in the goings on in the living room- little butterball
Christmas is Awesome.

Need to Share

I like visiting the NieNie Dialouges blog, but not until I heard about it from several different sources did I finally check out this article. And now that I have, I feel a need to share it. It moves me and makes me think. At least for today, the trials of our own family seem more bearable, more like blessings than trials in fact. I hope it adds something to your day and your Christmas season, too. :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

New Family Pictures

We recently had Stephen's cousin who is a photographer take some new family pictures of us. She had a rough time of it between poor lighting and trying to get our busy Cooper to cooperate! But they still turned out great and I'm excited to create with them. I've had some ideas for updating our living room wall for a long time and now I can get to work! Go HERE to see how we turned out! If your in the Pocatello area, give Melonie a call if you need a good photographer that is awesome with kids ;)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Oh My Cute!

Some of these pics compliments of Keaton :) I can't get enough of them... what a little love!

Recent Cooperisms...

With Taron and Keaton earlier in the month- he literally spends the entire time they are here in hyper excited mode!

Cooper (while playing beside me on the kitchen table): "Mom, can Nephi come over to play?"
Me: "Nephi? Like from 'Journey to the Promised Land'?"
Cooper: "Ya, Nephi. I think he would just like to play with me."

Just the other day, Cooper was playing around on his bed at the same time Ryder was laying there as I was working around the room and into the hallway. I told him to make sure and be careful with Ryder on the bed too. He replied, palms and shoulders up, "I won't break him. Cuz then there would be no more Ryder's."

Not too long ago, Coop came in to the house after being outside with Stephen and, once the coat and hat and etc. were off, pulled up his pant leg to show me an owie on his knee
(invisible I might add)
and says, "Mom, I just felled off my motorbike (what he calls his little trike) and got dis owie. I need a rubberband." I replied, "You mean a band-aid?" :) Yep.


Christmas Advent Calendars

I'm thinking there is a small window in a kid's life wherein Christmas is truly magical. And this year, we are there! I've always loved Christmastime and this year am extra excited to make it special around our house. This last weekend my friend and I made advent calendars!

I really like how this one turned out! It's made out of mini matchboxs that you can buy in sets of ten at the dollar store! To see where I got this idea and get the tutorial, go here.

I thought I was going to like this one better, but confess that I think the top one is my favorite :) I'm just not quite sure this one looks finished, ya know? Anyhow, it's made out of a mini muffin pan and magnetic paper! These papers are so pretty- can you see the glitter? Inside this one I'm going to put pieces of paper with a Christmas activity Cooper can do that day. For a great list of ideas, visit here. And to see where I got the idea, click here :)
'tis the Season!

Friday, November 13, 2009

We're Gonna Miss This...

Creative Energy

Lately I've been feeling creatively pent up, as though I just can't even stand not to make the ideas and thoughts in my head become reality. One night last week Stephen shot down all my excuses in a hurry and told me to get after it. So... I did.

And the feeling of uplift that seemed to happen automatically as I spread patterned papers and ribbons across the living room floor had me convinced... I need to create. It is part of my well being. I can be a better Mom, better wife, better sister and friend, a better ME when I do something creative each day. I feel invigorated by planning and producing things that are unique to our life. I have lots of reasons to be happy and using my talents is my happiness frosting. And life is just better with frosting, ya know? :)

So, this cute Thanksgiving garland is Exhibit A :) This is what the spread of paper and ribbon was all about.

And today's bit of frosting are these caramel apples. I was hoping to replicate Rocky Road and Apple Pie varieties from Rocky Mountain Choclate Factory. Somehow in my head these are a great kids treat- apples, you know :) Plus Coop enjoyed helping, so there was no battle for my attention or burning the midnight oil to make it happen. Yummy...

in the market for a little boy or two?


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