This is a tradition we do at our church. Every year each class of kids brings a different Christmas thing in to decorate the sanctuary: wreaths, candles, presents, etc. while a narrator tells a little about the tradition and how it relates to our Savior.
This year I was narrator for the candles. I asked one of the children who shall remain nameless to take pictures for me since he/she is too old to participate.
Well, he/she fell asleep at the wheel. No pictures. But, the chilren's pastor took some, so at least I have some of Brennan. Her class carried in the presents. She is dressed in red.
We have always been Little House on the Prairie fans. We have all the Dvd seasons, have read all the books, have made Little House crafts and recipes and done studies on the life of Laura Ingalls Wilder.
So, when I found out that in September Dean Butler was going to be the special guest for Laura Ingalls Wilder Days in Mansfield, Missouri I knew we had to go.
I mean, who doesn't like Almanzo?
So, we loaded up the van and made the 3 and 1/2 hour trip to Missouri. The Wilder homestead is is in Mansfield and every year they hold Laura Ingalls Wilder Days complete with special homestead tours and a parade.
When we arrived in Mansfield we went straight to the little museum beside the house. It was very interesting and even housed Laura's teaching certificate!
Here we are in front of Almanzo and Laura's house. They were holding tours. It was a cute little house with a modern (for that time) kitchen and a bathroom.
Then, we stood in line to meet Dean Butler. We were ten people away when he had to break for the parade! So, we drove down the road to the parade and hurried back to get in line. We were able to resume the spot we were in before. The lady in front of us had driven in for the weekend from L.A. Now that's a fan!
And here's Dean! He really was a nice guy. I think he feels very overwhelmed that still today people are such big fans of his. Brittany and I each got an autographed photo of a scene from the show, and the younger kids got their tickets autographed. Brooke told him that she loves the show and her favorite episode is "Divorce, Walnut Grove Style". He seemed genuinely tickled that she told him that.
Before we left we drove over to the "Rock House" which was just down the road a little. Rose Wilder, their daughter, had this house built for them after she became a famous author. They lived there briefly, but eventually returned to their little white house. It's no wonder they settled in Mansfield. It is a beautiful area.
Then, we drove over to see their graves. They are buried in a little cemetery about a mile or two from their house.
It was definately worth the trip. And, we were even at an intersection with the Amish and their horse and buggies on the way. Memories were made!
Well, about a month ago I went on a Saturday morning to help clean our church nursery. We usually do a scrub down/toy purge about every six months to a year. So, I was almost done cleaning when David called me from work.
"What are you doing?"
I said, "Cleaning the nursery."
He said, "Cleaning the nursery? Is there something you're trying to tell me?"
I said, "The church nursery."
He said, "Oh yeah, I forgot you were doing that today."
Later that evening............
We went to Fuddruckers, just the two of us. When we are able to it's become sort of a Saturday date night for us. A little pricey, but a lot yummy.
Anyway, so as we were eating our burgers and fries, I asked David with a serious face, "So. Does May 2014 mean anything to you?"
He sat for probably a full minute deep in though wondering what could be happening in May 2014.
Something with my job? No. Something with homeschool? No. A vacation? Haha. No.
He said, "I really have no idea."
I said, "Remember when you called me this morning and I told you I was cleaning the nursery and you said, 'Are you trying to tell me something?' Well, I'm trying to tell you something."
He looked at me with big surprised eyes and said, "ARE YOU PREGNANT?"
I said, "Are you surprised. It's the 11th time! I was just sure you already knew and as soon as I said May 2014 you would've guessed it right away!"
Oh, well. Life is just full of surprises apparently.
Okay, well I know that Brennan's birthday was September 1st and today is October 30. BUT, my laptop started working again and I was actually able to, by the grace of God, use the card reader port and get my pictures from Brittany's camera!
So, better late than never............ Here is the birthday girl, Brennan Avery!
I was very excited whenSignazon contacted me about doing a review of one of their products.
Banners seem to be very popular these days. I've seen them all over the internet, so I chose a banner to do my review on.
I thought a birthday banner would be perfect, because, well we have 12 birthdays in our family and it certainly would get lots of use!
I headed over to their website and chose one of the pre-made templates. Then, I customized it for our family.
THIS is the template I chose. The tools are very user-friendly and there were many other templates to choose from. You can also upload a picture to place on your banner, but since I wanted something I could use for everyone, I decided to not add one.
The banner turned out great! It even arrived in time for Brennan's birthday! The banner has grommets for easy hanging and I was also sent an email with helpful tips for using and hanging it. The website was very easy to navigate and the customer service was excellent, as well. I would definitely order from this company again.
Now, where are the pictures of this awesome banner and that sweet little darling Brennan you ask?
Well. Nothing can ever go smoothly, can it?
I planned to post pictures of the awesome banner that said "A Very Happy Birthday to You!" and the cute little birthday girl sticking her face in her pink cake, but since I still don't have a camera, Brittany took pictures with hers and when she went to download them noticed her memory card is broken on the edge and wouldn't download. So, we tried the power cord that came with my old camera and it still wouldn't work on her computer and I couldn't download them onto my laptop, because my laptop DIED.
So, essentially, her camera is holding my pictures hostage.
So, when the ransom is paid, which hopefully will be soon, I can post said pictures.
I feel badly about leaving you in suspense.
So, while you wait, how about running over there to Signazon and making your own awesome birthday banner (or business cards, or window clings or magnets, or.......)?
Okay, so who knew raising ten kids would be so time consuming? Because, apparently, it leaves no time for things like blogging and sleeping.
Anyway, I wanted to post a few pictures of the two birthday boys from this month.
Travis turned three on the 5th.
He wanted a "Monkey George" birthday. I made these very cute cupcakes with vanilla wafers to look like monkey faces, but for some reason I can't get the picture to upload. I still haven't gotten another camera, so I was going to use Brittany's, but at the last minute I realized her battery was dead, so she had to use her phone, so maybe that's the problem. (Yes, I know that was a long run on sentence full of grammatical no-nos. Oh, you didn't notice? Mmmkay. Never mind.)
Here he is with his monkey ears.
And his "Monkey George" backpack.
Timothy turned 13 on the 11th. David took him to a friend's shooting range and he had a blast. No pun intended.
Timothy is such a funny kid. He is always making me laugh. He doesn't have a shy bone in his body. You'd never think that from this picture, huh?
I'm posting this late obviously, because Brittany's birthday was last Sunday. So, it's either I'm in shock that I know have an 18 year old adult child, or the fact that the oldest three kids left me for Tampa, Florida for the week.
Either way, I really was cheated since I didn't get to witness the once in lifetime event of my oldest child becoming an adult. Does this qualify me for an award? A reward? A vacation?
Anyway, the kids left last Saturday to go to Tampa for the FWB National Convention. They helped with the missions organization for three days and got to go to Disney for two days. They'll be home on Sunday evening. I've never been to Disney (does this post seem like a sob story so far?) but I'm glad they got to go.
The other seven kids and I had a fairly eventful week since most of us have been sick with a sinus infection (well, all of us really), but we still managed to go to the splash pad, the library and "Top Hat" pizza. We didn't even get blown away by the massive storms that came through Tuesday night, although we had a ton of branches down and about 60,000 homes without power in Tulsa. I was so grateful and thanking Jesus we were not one of those 60,000.
So, now I need to get this mountain of homeschool stuff sorted and off my table, so my kids don't have to eat dinner on the floor.
At least I've lost two pounds this week. So, there's that.
Well, I just love America, I really do, and it always makes me tear up a little watching fireworks and thinking of what it must have been like for all the founding fathers who started this great country. And, all the brave folks who've fought for our freedom, and all the people who've stayed behind and supported those folks.
Wednesday night we went to see our church's annual fireworks show, which is just as awesome as any professional show, I might add. We had a picnic potluck and I think I might have eaten a grilled elk burger, I'm not sure, but if I did it was goooood. Unfortunately, David's shift didn't end until 8:30, so he didn't make it out to watch fireworks with us.
So, we went to see fireworks Thursday night, too. We decided to see watch the Jenks display, so we left early enough to be able to find a spot to sit. Which ended up being at the top of a tall hill.
And we sat there for THREE hours until the fireworks started.
But, another dad had the idea of sledding down the hill on a box, so that started a trend and before long enough boxes were found and about twenty or more kids were sledding down the hill in July.
Since Travis killed my camera, I don't have one single picture.
David and the kids walked a block over to the green market where they spent an arm and a leg on snacks since it was the only place open, and the closest, on food that "only Mom would eat" because, well, it's health food and who but Mom would willingly eat health food? But, they did agree that the Stevia sweetened soda was drinkable and the all natural cheetoes were edible. Crisis averted.
I took the kids to student day at the Castle in Muskogee for this year's Renaissance Festival. We have been before, but this was our first trip to this one. Actually the first time I went to a Renaissance festival was in Hawaii when David and I were first married!
A "coo" in Scottish (I think?), also known as a "cow".
Bailey freaking out from the goat.
Aboard the pirate ship, me hearty! Argh!
"We'll add these deck hands to our crew!" "Argh!"
What the? Gandolf?
Brooke the Red
Tristan of Alexander
Travis of Clarke. This picture just says it all, really.
Keep it up and this is your future, Buddy!
Bethany of Paige
The joust was cut a bit short because this knight got hurt. For real.
The King and Queen whom we avoided. Remember this?