Monday, December 31, 2012

New Years Eve

Happy New Years Eve! I am sitting here drinking a cup of hot coffee and watching big puffy snowflakes fall to the ground. I can't help but reflect on the goodness of God this past year. He has been so faithful to me and to our little family. Not that everything has been perfect, but that he has been with us through all of it. Some major highlights of this year include...

Expecting our 4th child. I have always wanted to have a big family. But, over the past few years God has changed my heart from wanting a big family to wanting to raise up children who will grow up to love the Lord fiercely. The fact that God would choose two very imperfect people like Nick and I to raise such amazing children is beyond me. But, I am so thankful and am very excited to meet this newest little R in 2013.

Leading us to Peine Ridge Church. If we only would have known last January when we walked through the doors of PRC how God would use this church to change our hearts and lives I wouldn't have been able to believe it. Watching the change in our family through what we have learned this year has been an increadible blessing and the friendships we have made have blessed me so much this year. There are big changes on the horizon for PRC in 2013 and I feel blessed to be a part of what God is doing in our community.

Nick and I celebrated 7 years of marriage this year. I am so in love with my husband. God has been so faithful to us every year of our marriage but to stand back and see how far God has brought us is an amazing gift. I am so thankful how God has grown Nick and I not only as individuals but as a couple.

I could go on and on. But, right now I am just sitting here and soaking up the knowledge that God is good. I don't know what 2013 will hold. I can't begin to imagine what trials we might face and what joys we might encounter. But, I know without a doubt that God will be there with us through all of it, working all things out for his glory!

I pray that all of us will experience the closeness and faithfulness of God this new year! Happy 2013!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Recap Part 1

Wow, can you believe Christmas is over and tomorrow is New Year's Eve? I am in disbelief. I have been a bad blogger during this holiday. The hubs has been off work since the Friday before Christmas and we have been soaking up all the family time. I think it might be the longest span of time off he has ever had! 

I also have not been the best picture taker during this Christmas. The Saturday before Christmas we celebrated Christmas with my mom's side of the family at our house and then that Sunday we celebrated with Nick's sister and her family. At both events I don't think I snapped a single photo. I guess I was having too much fun to be bothered!

But, I did get some photos of Christmas Eve and Christmas day thankfully. So, I thought I would post a few pics in a couple of installments!

Here are the kiddos before church on Sunday morning before Christmas. I was glad they had so many opportunities to wear their cute Christmas outfits! I also think this might be one of the first times in almost 2 1/2 years that I have ever gotten a picture of all three kiddos smiling at the same time!

On Christmas Eve we went with my parents, sister and brother-in-law, and Grandma to a Japanese hibachi restaurant for dinner (SO much fun! and delicious!) Then we went back to my parents for Christmas p.j.s and a Wii bowling tournament... which I might have placed last in... I am such a sucker for kiddos in matching Christmas p.j.s. I hope to do this as long as they will let me...

We stayed late at my parents and made it home in time to put everyone to bed and get the tree ready for Christmas morning.
More pics to come!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

A few last minute gift ideas

I thought I would pop in today on this lovely Thursday morning (said only with a touch of sarcasm because it is kind of a dreary cold day in these parts) and share with you a few last minute DIY gifts I made. I think homemade gifts are so much fun but it is never really something I have gotten into. This year I decided I wanted to make something for Nick's coworkers on his team and then I also needed a few little gifts for filler. So, I browsed around online and was inspired to create these two gifts this year.

Reindeer root beer:
How cute are these! I am so excited to give these to my cousins (I am guessing they don't read my blog in all of their teenager coolness). I would say these were certainly made with lots of love as I am pretty sure my fingerprints are gone after constantly burning them with hot glue!). (Oh, and see my pretty new tile backsplash in the background?)

For Nick's co-workers (and a few other people) I decided to make cute little jars and fill with homemade nuts.... I had good intentions. I started with plain mason jars and cheapo plastic animals from Wal-Mart:

Then I added a little gold spray paint, some string and these cute printables from here (I used Picasa to print them off in wallet size and printed them off on cardstock).

Here is a little bit better pic (although the color looks a little more copper in this one)

So, do you have some last minute gifts to make? Do you still have shopping to do? Enjoy your Christmas preparations, it will be over before we know it!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

A whole lot of randomness...

Happy Wednesday everyone Can you believe Christmas is LESS than a week away? As of last night all of my gift shopping is done (thanks Hubs!). I need to put together a few of my little DIY gifts and then I need to go shopping for food for the big family Christmas party that is at our house on Saturday... but I am feeling pretty good about my progress.

We have been doing a light week of school. So we have been doing some of Max's math and reading but that's about it. But, we have filled in the gaps with all sorts of Christmas fun. Yesterday we made a gingerbread house and some gingerbread people. You would have thought I was the best mom in the entire world when I put the gingerbread house kit from Target in my cart yesterday. I love how my kiddos love the little things!

I am not sure what is on today's agenda, but I think we will have a good time. We started the day with pancakes. I tried this mix-
Have you ever tried it? I ordered it from Amazon because I couldn't find it at any of our stores but holy moly is it yummy. I have never really been picky about pancakes and waffles... they are ALL good. But, this mix makes them REALLY good. Since getting the mix like a week ago I have made waffles twice and pancakes once. So good!

Quick FB update... I am back on Facebook. I actually was really enjoying being off but our homeschool group uses Facebook for all of our event sign ups and communication. I am not on it very much though. So, hopefully I have found a balance. It almost feels like Facebook is the new e-mail, hard to live without it if you want to stay in touch with everyone! 

I do know that on today's agenda is cleaning up my kitchen. My parent's game me the most awesome Christmas present... they tiled a backsplash in my kitchen! My dad came over and finished up yesterday so now I need to put it all back together and see how it looks. I feel like I have a brand new kitchen! It is beautiful. I will post some pics on here and try to find a before pic!

Well, I am off to attempt some productivity today! I hope everyone has a wonderful day!

Monday, December 17, 2012


When we got home from our fun morning adventure on Friday I got on my computer and saw the news. My hearts sank. I cried a lot. 

After Friday's horrific events I couldn't help but soak up my kiddos this weekend. I couldn't help but think that everything they did was precious, and wonderful, and perfect.

Being a mom to these three is one of the absolute greatest joys and blessings of my life. I cannot begin to imagine what the parents in Connecticut who lost their children are feeling.

It is such a struggle when horrific things happen to understand "why". And while I have no answers and can not wrap my mind around it at all, I find comfort in the fact that God was the same God on Friday that he was the day before. And that he is good and works all things out for good... even when we can't see it right now.

I thought of this song this weekend and it was a good reminder for me of what Jesus has done for those who have put our hope and faith in Him.

My hope is that we don't quickly forget. I saw a lot of people online sharing the same sentiment of appreciating their own children so much more and hugging them much tighter. Let's not go back to taking them for granted. The urgency we felt on Friday is the urgency that exists daily. None of us knows the number of our own days or those of our children. And while we should not live in fear we should live making each day with our children count. Everyday we should be asking ourselves if we have prayed with our children today, shared the gospel with them today, hugged them today, told them "I love you" today....

Tomorrow is a blogger day of silence for the victims at Sandy Hook so I won't be on here tomorrow. Visit here for all of the details if you are interested in participating. It will be a wonderful reminder to use tomorrow to pray for those parents (and grandparents, aunts and uncles, etc) that our hearts are so broken for.

I hope you all have a good Monday today and enjoy this week leading up to Christmas!

Linking up today at The Better Mom and The Modest Mom!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Nutcracker Ballet

On Friday morning I got to take my two big kiddos to see The Nutcracker Ballet with our homeschool group (Jack got to spend the morning with his Papa which he was very excited about!). I realized that this was my kiddos first opportunity to go to a live theater production and I made a point to share with them proper theater etiquette and remind them that going to the theater is a very special privilege. I was also very pleased we had an opportunity for them to get a little more wear out of the adorable Christmas outfits that my mom got them for Christmas! I didn't take my camera with me but we got some cute shots in front of the tree before we left.

Little bro did not want to be left out of the sibling photo shoot.

Nothing makes me quite happier than seeing our three kiddos together. I can't wait until we add their little brother to the group photos!
The kids and I had a wonderful time and I was beyond proud of them! In the past the performance used to be cut short for the kiddos but this year was a full two hour ballet. They sat still through the entire thing and told me that they loved it! Max said he loved the rat king and Sophie loved all of the ballerinas. I am so thankful to have gotten to have such a neat Christmas experience with my kiddos!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

My Saturday Morning View

This is what Saturday mornings usually look like around here. We spend some time getting the house cleaned up and then at some point it turns into wrestle time with Daddy. Today's wrestle time included costumes and stage names. I sit and drink my coffee and enjoy my front row seat.

Jack tends to get a little bored with is at some point so usually the dump trucks come out...

So thankful for Saturday mornings with my family.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Christmas Home Tour 2012

I wanted to join in today with Kelly's Korner Blog 2012 Christmas Tour of Homes and The Nesting Place 2012 Tour of Homes! I really love decorating for Christmas. Every year I say I am going to keep it simple and then I find myself adding a few more things everyday... Yesterday I even undecorated my whole tree and decided to start again... Which also included a text to my mom (who is the master tree decorator) to come and HELP! Thankfully, my mother is fabulous and came right to my rescue (really I should be doing a tour of her house, it is way more impressive)! So, without further ado... here are some highlights of our home decorated for Christmas this year...

The entryway

The tree (sorry, pic is a little fuzzy!... I haven't mastered the art of the Christmas tree pic yet)

The mantle

And a few other touches here and there
The Christmas card display above was a little Martha Stewart inspired DIY. A piece of ribbon, a big embroidery hoop, some clothespins, a little wood glue and voila!

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

10 weeks to go...

I am 30 weeks today! Wow! That is just crazy! When I posted this photo on Instagram I had to ask if it would be socially acceptable to wear comfy pants for the next 10 weeks... I was kind of serious...

Things are going well though. We had an ultrasound last week and our little guy looks awesome! The doc is not concerned at all with our little man anymore which was a wonderful early Christmas present for this mama. They said he weights about 2 pounds, 14 ounces right now so his growth is no longer a concern and his heart and palette look great. Yay! Also, I passed my glucose test and my doctor's only concern was that my iron levels are a little low. He suggested trying to get a little more iron through food. Steak for dinner? If you insist...

I have also reached the point where getting to my own toes and breathing at the same time is a difficult endeavor. Lucky for me, I have the best husband ever. After offering to send me to get a pedicure to which I declined because A) I am feeling cheap this time of year and B) I really didn't want to have to shave my legs... the hubs offered to paint my toes himself. Oh how I love that man! And he actually did a really good job. If computer programming doesn't pan out I think he has a real future in toenails....

Also, in the wake of preparing for baby, our other baby might be dealing with a little bit of regression...

This guy is a wildcard for sure. We were at lunch with a friend and her baby yesterday and the baby was doing the "yelling to hear his own voice" little thing that babies do. Jack walked up to him and covered his mouth with his hand and said, "stop it baby". Yeah, I might have my hands full....

Despite a little anxiety about how Jack will do and a little pressure to get every nook and cranny of my home clean and organized, we could not be more excited for our little Quatro to get here! We love him so much already.