Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Company for Christmas

My sister, Traci, and her family are here visiting for Christmas. My neice, Averi, and Jack decided to "share" a blanket (even though neither wanted to move his/her seat on the couch) and relax while watching some good ol' Curious George. Meanwhile, the rest of us prepared to put the babies to bed. Can you tell Rick is enjoying the chaos?

Sweet Li'l Carpenters

While Mom and Dad Christmas shopped, Baylee came over for the day to entertain Jack and Sam. Together, Jack and Baylee constructed this house from panels of gingerbread, tubs of frosting, and packages of candy. With a little help from Uncle Chad, our sweet, little carpenters built this house from the plate up. Didn't they do a great job?

Special Delivery

Jack has so enjoyed all the packages arriving at our door this past week! UPS, FedEx, and the mailman all delivered boxes of fun to us. The colorfully-wrapped gifts inside are exciting, but their contents are still a mystery. However, the boxes, packing peanuts and bubble wrap provided instant fodder for mischievous play. Rick and I both cleaned up this entire box of peanuts--twice!

Christmas Kiss

Rick and I held a mini-photo shoot trying to get a good picture for our Christmas card. After a lot of sweat and a few tears (thank God, no blood!), we did end up with a few good shots. The bottom photo of Sam is so sweet with his face lit up with lights. The middle photo is fairly representative of the bulk of our session. Finally, the top photo was the winner--we love how it so accurately portrays how Sam kisses!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Letter Crazy

Soon after Sam was born, my mom came to visit. We were shopping for a double stroller when she asked me if she could buy a gift for Sam. We saw these beautiful painted canvas monogram sets at a little baby boutique, and I told her that would be a great gift. We were able to have them custom-made with his initials and the colors of his room. They didn't arrive until after she had gone, but they really look great above his crib. In fact, we've come to realize that Sam appreciates them the most. Check out his maniacal behavior and laughter at the mere sight of these wall hangings. This happens EVERY time he catches sight of them.

Sappy Story

Last weekend, I caught Sam as he was crawling by and noticed he had something in his hair. When I went to pull it out, my fingers stuck--pine sap! It just so happens that Sam is the perfect height (while crawling) for his hair to skim the bottom of the Christmas tree. The pine-scented super glue helped define the trendy, little mohawk spike Sam is currently sporting, but it quickly hardened into somewhat of a hazard for the rest of us, who love kissing the top of his head. I had no idea what gets sap out of hair. Fortunately, I didn't have to stress out about the possibility of cutting off his spike because Rick gave Sam a good bath and gently scrubbed until all that sap dissolved.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Christmas Tree Hunting

In lieu of our annual trip to the mountains for our Christmas tree, we chose to make things a little easier on all of us by stopping a little the foothills. This year, we cut our trip in half by visiting a tree farm in Lincolnton--an easy one hour and ten minute drive. Jack chose his own tree very quickly and helped Rick cut it down. Sam enjoyed playing with the pine needles. Rick and I were a little less decisive, but we finally agreed on a 9 ft. tree for our entry way. Lucky for us, Santa and Mrs. Claus were visiting the tree farm. Jack introduced himself to Santa, "My name is Jack Colewox," and told him he wanted a scooter for Christmas. We hovered over cups of hot chocolate while the trees were secured to the roof of the Tahoe. Jack sipped his "coffee," and Sam took a nap on the way home.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving Traditions

We hosted Thanksgiving dinner for Rick's parents and Rick's sister and her family (including her in-laws). We ended up serving dinner for ten; fortunately, they all brought food and helped clean up! We have a couple of Thanksgiving traditions. The first is our tablecloth. Every year, everyone who sits at our table writes down what he or she is thankful for on the tablecloth in permanent marker. We have done this for three consecutive years now, and it is a lot of fun reading about how God has blessed us in the past and then adding our new thoughts. The second tradition is decorating Christmas cookies! Jack really enjoyed decorating (and eating) the cookies. Even Sam enjoyed some frosting after a quick grab yielded sweet success when I wasn't paying attention (top picture). Once they are all frosted and sprinkled, each family takes home a plateful. For me, these traditions make it feel like Thanksgiving--even if some of the people I love aren't there each and every year.

Going to the Chapel...

My baby brother got married! Randy and Stacey tied the knot on November 22nd, and we felt so blessed to witness their marriage ceremony. Rick and I were able to leave the kids at home with help from friends, neighbors, and family (thank you, all!). On Friday, we enjoyed the rehearsal dinner (maybe a little too much, as evidenced by the bottom photo) and reuniting with family.
My sister Traci and I joined Stacey and her sisters/friends for a late showing of Twilight (ahhhhh, Edward Cullen!) afterward. Saturday morning, Rick and I woke up around 9:30 (!!!), and decided to go out for breakfast (!!!). Sorry for all the exclamation points, but if you have a toddler and a baby, you know how exciting all these things really are;)
The wedding was great, the reception--complete with a mariachi band--was delightful. Afterward we headed to see some friends and stayed at their house overnight. Again, we woke up around 9 a.m. (!!!), and decided to go out for breakfast (!!!), before driving to the airport and heading home.
The real bonus? Everybody was pretty disappointed we didn't bring the boys, so now we have several visitors lined up for the next couple months! Congrats, Randy & Stacey Goetz!