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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

First Movie Ever

Last week we decided to take the boys to their first big screen movie...Madagascar. It was a hit. We got some popcorn and some soft pretzels with cheese. I bought some lemonade along in mason jars and we were set! It cracked me up when we sat down because they weren't big enough to hold down the spring loaded seats so their little feet were stuck in the air! It was a great night making memories together. They were bug eyed and in all their glory just watching this enormous screen. It's been a bit since we've been to the movies, I forgot how LONG the previews are! They're practically another film in and of itself! I'm sure this won't be our last time in a theater together.

"You will never find time for anything.
If you want time you must make it."
~Charles Buxton~

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Friends!

psalm 118:24
It's a beautiful Christmas morning. What a true, deep blessing to have a warm and happy home.....from this one to yours, we send LOVE, PEACE, & ABIDING JOY.
Some pictures from Christmas past:
Luke on his first Christmas morning, (9 months)
Tyler during his first Christmas, (6 months). Yes,
I made that poor kid actually wear this. You can tell
a first time Mom a mile away, dressing their kids like santa and reindeer!
Sorry Tyler!

Merry Christmas Friends!

"I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year."--Charles Dickens

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas card regrets??

So, I thought I'd get creative this year and try something different for our Christmas card. I'm having regrets though because I just don't think a majority of the receivers are "getting it." From the reactions I've seen, (being there while they open the card), there is for the most part, scrunched up eyebrows and a little noise the resembles a "hmmm" and then that's I have to say to them, "do you get it" and then they look at it a bit longer and either say, "what's to get?" or "OH, NOW I see it!!"
So, how about you....if you received our card, did you get it?
If I didn't mail you a card, here it is and you can let me know if it catches you!

Behind the scenes at the making of this card: If you look closely you will see little brown things lying around me, they are raisins, they were used to keep the boys in their place, but they were getting thrown about at the same time! And lastly, a special shout out to Wendell & MaryJo for helping us capture the shots! It wasn't an easy task I assure you!! This was the first try, to get JOY all in one frame...not working.
My most accommodating husband laying down his 6'4 body
to try and make the letter "J" with Luke!
My version of "O" while squishing my almost 5 month pregnant belly into my knees!
Tyler in all his glory being the letter "Y"....something he
continued to do randomly throughout the day for about a week.
He would just lie down wherever he was,
"look Mama, I'm a letter Y!!"
Option 2 if I didn't have the guts to go with Option 1!!

Thanks for amusing me as I ramble about our Christmas card
that most people will throw away in about 3.5 weeks!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Decorated for the Holiday

Come in from the cold,
I finished decorating for the season
and thought I'd give you a little tour.
I painted our door bright red,
a change from the dark green it use to be.

Step into the kitchen:
The view from my sink.
there have been several birds visiting my little "nest",
I wouldn't mind if they settled there for the winter.
I found this old vintage looking toaster cover at a thrift store
here in town. It truly reminds me of a Grandma's house,
but I love it nonetheless. I think it annoys Jake because he has
to undress the thing before he make a piece of toast!!
When I find a picture in a magazine that particularly amuses me
or is full of beauty, I will tape it to my cabinet door or back splash.
"Bear in mind that you should conduct
yourself in life as at a feast."
My favorite little "spot." My Cath Kidston cards from
my cousin Shar, mini marshmallows, freshly ground coffee,
sugar and tiny butter knives.
Our living room.
We've lived here almost 2 years. I always had the idea of writing something above the couch,
but couldn't find the "perfect"quote that said what I felt about home. Then one night I had a dream and this is what was written there:
The next day it was painted on. I bought some "paint pens"
from the local hardware store and free handed it. If I spend too much
time trying to make it look just perfect I'll mess it up...
I have to just trust and go for it! (sounds a lot like life, doesn't it??)
Our mantle:
I had made the hydrangea wreath earlier this Fall,
it never found it's way down, so I stuck with the color theme
and worked around it. Tyler's room, freshly "spring cleaned" and rearranged.
Not sure what got into me last week, but I was cleaning
and wiping down walls and changing everything around like
I was getting paid to do it! I am really pleased
with how it all came out.
Tyler at 3 months old. I love this picture of us.
Sweet Luke's room:
Our haven of rest:

An amazing sketch by my cousin Freiman Stoltzfus.

'tis true indeed.
On this blustery winter's night
I am so grateful for a place to call home.
May your home be filled with
Peace, Joy and Rest tonight
and always.

Taj Mahal

All day Wednesday I was craving Indian food...I kept thinking about it until around 3:30 I just had to call Jake to inform him that we were going out to eat, (or option 2; you keep the boys and I will go out to eat)!! Our favorite food as a couple is Indian food so were on our way to the Taj Mahal. Just typing those words brings back several memories that will not soon disappear. In 2000 I spent 2 months living in central India doing some missions work with YWAM. One day we as a team decided to take the 5 hour crammed, bumpy, adventurous car ride to the Taj Mahal. Upon arriving we were informed that is was closed for the first time in 400 years for renovations!!!!! YOU'VE. GOT. TO. BE. KIDDING. ME!! We stared through the iron fence with longing and then made our way back home! Someday I would love to return....making sure of course that it's OPEN for tourists! Supposedly they are closed on Fridays now, in case you're wondering. So, onto the Taj Mahal in Millersville, PA! The second we stepped in the door my mouth was watering. This was the first time the boys have been out for Indian food since they've been born, (they practically lived on it while I was pregnant with them)! They enjoyed it for the most part, especially the huge "balloon bread" as Tyler called it! It was a great time had by all and bless those dear servers
for cleaning up the rice mess we left behind.

Here's to India!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

In the bleak midwinter

Last Christmas, (or was it the Christmas before??) my cousin Raquel gave me Sarah McLachlan's CD "Wintersong." It has since become a favorite, especially this song. When I hear it, the words call to me: It was written by Gustav Holst, 1874-1934. I love that I am being a part of the past by listening to and embracing these words written so long ago.

"In the bleak midwinter, frost wind made moan,
earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
in the bleak midwinter, long ago.

Our God, heaven cannot hold him, nor earth sustain;
heaven and earth shall flee away when he comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
the Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.
Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
cherubim and seraphim thronged the air;
but his mother only, in her maiden bliss,
worshiped the beloved with a kiss.

What can I give him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
if I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
yet what I can I give him: give my heart."

Artwork by Freiman Stoltzfus

*Sarah McLachlan "In the bleak midwinter"

My "gift" boutique

Hello Friends! I'm still here, but haven't posted all week....AND missed my "theater thursday." Oh well, it will be here again next week!

The boys have been sick and I've been on clean-up duty! Every cough, (which inevitably lead to throwing up) would send me leaping out of bed and racing to their room in record breaking time! I amazed myself a few times at how fast I could get from my dead-sleep position to the side of the crib! So, my week consisted of: running to the rescue with bowl in hand, putting new sheets on the bed/crib, bathe child, lather with lotion and powder, spray room to eliminate the nasty odors which could have possibly caused ME to get sick, run a load of laundry.....and repeat!

It's been one week and we are all better now! I am more grateful then ever for food that stays where it should! Jake and I didn't get sick and for that too I am so thankful.

Let's end this short post with a picture of some of my lovely gifts I received for my birthday: thank you for all your well-wishes!
My bed is calling! I have been on a "nesting" rampage the last 48 hours! I have "spring cleaned" and rearranged every room in my house! No kidding! I'll post more on that later....for now, I must sleep!!
A happy Saturday to all....

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A visit with my cousin

Last month my cousin Amy was visiting from Arizona, her Mom lives here in PA. It's always so special to be able to spend time with her and her two daughters. It isn't very often that we see each other. She has always had a dear place in my heart, as we have grown up together all our lives. There weren't many "young" cousins among the 69 of us! Yes, I am the youngest of 69 FIRST cousins on my Mom's side....seriously, I don't know many of them and it's somewhat embarrassing to me when someone says to me, "I'm your first cousin." Um, yeah. Amy is older then me and I use to, (still do) look up to her so much. She is a strong woman full of true compassion and kindness toward others. I wish she lived closer so our visits weren't so few and far between. I love you Amy!! Tyler and Ashlyn
Amy with her littlest love.
Tyler trying to share his trains with Ashlyn. That's my Aunt Annie,
we had our playdate at her home. My Aunt Jan and I. My sister was named after this Aunt.
Luke and Olivia, (both looking very weary)!
Olivia, the train girl with Tyler, the train guy. They got along just great!