Sunday, December 28, 2008

We Did It

We have successfully made it through the holiday season. It seems like it went so fast yet on the other hand we had endless celebrating. I am so blessed at this time to have a week off and the girls and I have some big plans. It seems strange to think that 2008 is just about to close. We have had a great year and I continue to marvel at how big the girls are getting. Christmas morning brought that to my attention in so many ways.

Ellie was completely excited all day on Christmas Eve. She encouraged the other two to join in the anticipation. There was so much going on and we were able to have Giselle and Noah here with us which brought its own excitement. We all joined up at my mom and dad's for the traditional Christmas Eve dinner. (Going back a few years) We always have a Christmas Eve program and each person is encouraged to participate. When I was somewhere around Ellie's age I remember singing, with the old LP (that is a record) Amy's Grants Tennessee Christmas. Not sure why I chose that song but for some reason I did. This year my girls decided to start singing a new Amy Grant song, I need a Silent Night, that I found while looking for Christmas music for the Christmas show. They each took their turn belting it out on the karaoke machine. Then they turned it into quiet the trio performance. I just couldn't believe that these were my children and they were participating in the same type of traditions that I so fondly remember. There was an empty space at the table this year without my sweet Grandmother. I still have these little flashes now and again or something that makes me well up with those stinking tears. I just remember the previous year with her all dolled up in her Christmas outfit. We miss her a lot and I am just so gad that my children were old enough to have the chance to meet her and know her. The hardest part now is watching my grandpa. He misses her so much and longs to reunite with her. I realize how grateful I am for the plan and how much I want to be with my husband and children forever. (Wow I am not sure how I got off on that path but I have now regained my composure and can move on. Sorry Mom!)

Once we got home form the Christmas Eve celebration all of the kids in their matching pjs went to bed. We all sleep out in the bonus room and so we can wake up together. Ellie however decided that 2:30 was an appropriate time to check and see if Santa had arrived. It took me the next three hours to keep her from jumping out of her skin. By 6:00 we were up brushing our teeth and ripping apart wrapping paper as fast as we could. Ellie got her own digital camera and I have officially let her take over the photography. She is doing quiet well and manages to remember to take more photos then I. I was completely surprised at with my Christmas present. It was all set up and decorated as I walked into the room. I will let you judge for yourself!

The snow decided to bring Christmas joy to us and we had trouble making the two mile trip to my parent's Christmas morning. As we took a the second path we also saw the three elk that have reappeared from last year. Ellie again capture the moment.

On Saturday we headed to the Bisel party. We are normally in Idaho for that weekend. It was great fun to participate in the Sleigh Ride, tubing, cemetery visit to Grandma and the unbelievable buffet.

Oh the memories that we have made this month. Here's to a new year of happiness and family time.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Long Time Coming

We're here! We really are alive and kicking it just seems that there is so much going on and I put blogging on the bottom of my list. If I have an extra minute I try to do something productive. Prime example, make cookies with Tess and Mia. They love it and it teaches me patience. We had a wonderful November and were very thankful to spend time with many of our family. Other things that happened in November:

Ellie had her first piano recital. Both of the girls started piano this fall and are doing great. They have different teachers (long story) and we are grateful that they enjoy it (for the time being). Ellie had practiced and practiced til everyone in the family could play her songs. That morning she was getting a little nervous. By time we got to the church where the recital was I am not sure who was shaking more, Tim or Ellie. He gets so nervous for the girls. Ellie was about to cry when she was introducing her pieces her voice was shaking so severely but she sat down and played like a pro. We were so proud of her and pleased that we got to share the moment with Grandpa and Grandma McNeil, and Allen and Patrice and Evan. Thanks guys!

We made a long trip to Boise for Thanksgiving. We have never actually been to Brain and Jan's house so we were looking forward to seeing them and the rest of our Butikofer family. I had been some what worried about the length of the trip so I prepared an entertainment box for the girls. What would we do without technology, seriously. Between the dvd players and the leapsters (Thanks Averett girls) the girls never made a peep. I however didn't do so well. Tim and I have different travel philosophies. Mine= get in the car and drive as fast as possible ONLY to stop if it is a dire emergency. Did I mention FAST! Tim is more of a sight-seer. He absolutely loves road trips and stops along the way to stretch out his legs and get a refill. And of course he would never eat in the car=too much of a mess!!!! I have decided Tim's way could be more enjoyable if we did it more expeditiously!!! We had a great time in Boise and I would love to show you pictures of it but I never took my camera out of the case. AND no one took it out of the case while I was in the pool with the kids doing cartwheels off the side and throwing Ellie and Lexie in the air off my shoulders. (My dad would be so proud) To Tim's defense he had hurt his back at work BUT while he sat on the side he could have snapped some actions shots.

I missed out on the Black Friday madness which really took a toll BUT I had my own little on-line Thanksgiving day madness when I was showing Sondi some online deals. It is possible that I could turn into a cyber shopper junkie!!! But I just missed Allen and the snowmobile-suit man!

We headed aback from Boise a day earlier than we originally planned and got to see some of my family on Sunday as my mom hosted a Sunday Thanksgiving dinner. Yes Thanksgiving is really a wonderful holiday with food and family.

To start off December I vowed I would make some fun times with the girls. So far we have managed to put up five Christmas trees and last night we went to Temple Square with the Gunners. I love the lights and the spirit that goes with it on Temple Square. It was a pretty mild night as far as the temperature goes BUT with kids they get cold fast. So we headed to Sizzler, a family friendly restaurant. Can I tell you it was so worth it. I love Sizzler salad bar and apparently it had rubbed off on my kids. Ellie was thrilled that she could go back as many times as she wanted. Tess was just happy she got to sit by Luke and Mia well you see, one of Mia's favorite food is watermelon and cantaloupe. She never stopped with the Watermelon and she eats it right down to the rind! Maybe a gift card in the stocking for all of them would be a great idea. Again, just the little things I need to remind myself, make them happy.

We cannot wait for Christmas to get here but more than that the girls are so excited to see their second mommy, Giselle. I think if I wrap her up and put her under the tree Christmas morning will be complete!