December 27, 2010

Christmas Day

Christmas morning we woke up and the kids looked in their stockings! I was so surprised that Santa brought me something since Jer and I both said we didn't want anything this year. Santa brought the kids toys to share since they were a little naughty lately. They got a tent and a Dr. set to play with. After stockings we got on oovoo to chat with my parents and the kids opened their gifts from them! They got clothes and books and fun things from them! They had to go and feed the community so we got off the computer and I made my traditional cinnamon pull apart bread for breakfast. Then the kids opened up their gifts from us! Mason got a leapster and game. Brook got a leapster game and a camera and Dallas got a learning puppy, talking phone and a pop up toy! For the rest of the morning we just relaxed, played with toys and Jer and I made dinner. I made a Texas sheet cake for dessert but my pumpkin pie got completely ruined. ha ha! Oh well.
We ate pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls. Jer always makes the perfect roast! Later that afternoon, Jer's family came to our house to give the kids their presents. Mason got some bottle cap pistols, brook got a game and Dallas got some keys! Jillian cracked me up when she crawled through the kid's tent!

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve we went to Jer's mom and dad's house. Three of Jer's sisters were there. Jillian and her family, Shayla and Courtney. Amanda and her family were the only ones who couldn't make it since they just had a new baby a few weeks ago.
The kids had fun playing with Addison, we ate yummy soft tacos, watched a home video and played a little wii dance games. We had to leave a little early because someone was covering Jer's call for a little bit. When we got home, I made some pigs in a blanket and veggies for dinner. Jer read the Christmas story to us. Then we watched the first Christmas video and I read a story out of my 24 days of Christmas book. I really feel that Brooklyn is finally at the age when she knows what the true meaning of Christmas is. It was so nice to feel the spirit and share the little moments together. After that the kids put on their Christmas pajamas and the set out cookies, milk and a letter for Santa. The kids got to stand in front of the tree and say what they wish for this Christmas and we tracked Santa on the computer.

December 21, 2010

A Virtual Card

Just sending a Christmas Card to say Merry Christmas!
We hope you all have a wonderful time filled with the love of Christ and family togetherness!

A surprise!

Today Ma and Dad sent us their box! It was so nice! They sent the kids a bunch of books and all of these treats and some Christmas presents for under the tree. It made me think of that first Christmas I spent with my step mom Cathy. I think we bonded for the first time when she showed me her family traditions. We made Chocolate covered treats and fudge! It made Christmas that year not as hard for me. I still really miss my mom but I don't think you knew Ma, just how much that time spent with me really helped. I love you!

December 19, 2010

Christmas treats!

One of my favorite Holiday traditions is baking and making treats with my family!
Brooklyn and Mason were such amazing helpers this week. I thought it would be crazy and chaotic with a lot of fighting but they were so sweet and took turns very well. While we listened to Christmas music, they helped me make my family's traditional Christmas caramels. We made some pumpkin chocolate chip cookies for the neighbors and then later, as a family we made a ginger bread house! It makes me so happy to see these family traditions being passed down. I hope my children will be teaching their children how important it is to do things as a family and talk about the real meaning of Christmas.

December 18, 2010

Awesome News!

These past two weeks have just been so stressful and I wasn't able to blog about it because nothing was really concrete until now.
Jer was having some difficulties at work for a long time and one morning last week Jeremiah woke up and told me that he just got this sudden hit over the head with bricks feeling that this career wasn't right for him.
Being married to Jer for 8 years, experience has taught me to trust these little feelings he gets. Every time we have followed them, we have moved and it always turned out to be the right thing for us. This time though was different. I completely trusted him that his job might not be right but what he wanted to do next, that was harder for me to swallow. Jer wasn't 100 percent sure what the next step was but the only thing he could think of was for him to go back to school at BYU-I and get another degree. In the past I usually would react with excitement and really want to just go and get going with our new life, but this time all I felt was dread and depression about the thought. I felt guilty for not supporting my husband in this decision and all I could do was pray it would work out.
About two days ago Jer came home and told me about a new position that just opened up at his current company. Its an Electrical Meter Technician. It would consist of repairing and installing power meters. The current guy doing it is retiring in February. So he and I discussed this job and all the pros and cons if he applied for it. Right away we both knew this was an answer to our prayers! It is a change from his current job, he won't be climbing poles anymore, he'll be in the office most of the time, he'll get specific training for it, he may not Journey out just yet but all of his current work and hours wont just be wasted. We'll save those and maybe he can Journey out later. Jer will be able to come home for lunch every day, he won't have to work overtime or be on call anymore so that means he'll be able to go to church with me every Sunday!!! Its a little of a pay cut but within 6 months we will be making what we make now.
Yesterday Jer's boss talked with him and he thinks Jer is great for the job and he got it!
This whole experience really made me feel so happy that we have been trying so hard recently to pray as a family and read our scriptures. I have felt more in tune with the Spirit and we feel our Heavenly Father's guidance. If Jer hadn't gotten that hit over the head with bricks feeling, we both are certain Jer wouldn't of thought twice about applying for this technician job. Guess we had to go through the crazy emotional roller coaster to realize what we really wanted and what we needed.
I LOVE you Jer! I love your hard work and how your number one priority is to be with your family and take care of us. Thank you for caring about my feelings and your willingness to put yourself aside to make me happy. I will never forget that honey. You are the best!!!

December 17, 2010

Mason's Christmas Program

Our Mason bug was such a big boy during his Christmas program! They did a little skit based on a Christmas book. All the kids were animals from the first Christmas manger scene. Mason was a little sheep that said hello to the baby Jesus. Then they all sang away in a manger! It was adorable! I loved that it was the most "christmasy" program we've seen. Guess its a perk since we live in a small town and nearly everyone is a Christian.
All dressed up for his program! I love how he puts his hands in his pockets!

So excited!

Mason is the middle sheep.

Sweet little guy, waiting patiently.

All the animals gathered around the manger to sing.

Mason's teacher Mrs. Jen helping him out of his costume.

December 14, 2010

Our weekend

After the crazy stressful week we just had, our little weekend in Fort Collins was exactly what we needed!
I really feel that my cousin Jamie was inspired to call us to invite us to visit.
We had such fun ice skating, meeting real life reindeer, eating yummy food and visiting!
I didn't get any ice skating pictures because, well I was too busy trying not to fall down and break anything. Ha ha!
Jamie and I ended up taking the bigger kids skating while the dads took the younger ones back to the vans to keep warm. The weather seemed deceptively warmer than it actually was.
Jamie is such a fun mom! She was so sweet. She even thought to bring hot chocolate for the kids. It was a special secret, and lets face it, secret hot chocolate is way cooler than regular hot chocolate. The kids were so excited. I asked Mason is he had fun and he said not very much because he can't ice skate very well. I said well neither can I but I still had fun. He just replied with "oh", like he hadn't thought of it that way before.
What a crack up!
All in all, we had a blast playing and visiting, telling mission stories and memories! I feel so lucky to be near this family. It feels like a rare chance to get to know them better and I'm so happy we went.

December 9, 2010

Just what I needed...

Grandma's crochet candy garland.

Homemade chocolate turtles and dried fruit!

Brooklyn holding some of Grandma's trail mix.
Oh Grandma Bailey, you will never know just how perfect timing your box did come!
Today was just one of those days that I knew would change our family's lives. There was a lot of discussing, a couple phone calls, a lot of tears, and a lot of confusion.
Then we got your box grandma, and it seemed like everything wasn't so horrible after all. We can make it through as long as we have family who love us and as long as we have a Father in Heaven who directs us.

Grandma's boxes have always been a tradition that my family has looked forward to as long as I can remember.
Although through the years the contents have varied from, hats, sweaters or blankets to home made snacks! No matter what was sent there was always two staples that never changed.
Grandma's coveted chocolate turtles and everything was always made with love!
Thanks for making me feel loved today Grandma and for making everything okay.

December 6, 2010

Putting up the tree!

This weekend we finally decided to put up our Christmas tree. Brook and Mase have really been hounding me about why we don't have any decorations up yet.
We are all so excited that it will be Dallas's 1st Christmas!
He was fascinated with the lights. So far he hasn't really pulled anything down yet. Hopefully he'll be good about it.
The kids really decorated almost all by themselves. Brooklyn and Mason were so cute using teamwork to hang the ornaments.
I wasn't feeling well so Jer was really such a sweet heart. He made dinner, organized the decorating, baked cookies and even cleaned up a bit. I feel so lucky to have him!