Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Feliz Navidad

There is so much to share from our very blessed Christmas season this year, but first let me just say that it is way easier taking down the Christmas decorations from the blog than it was taking them down and putting them away in the house...and way more fun too.

We have had such a special and memorable Christmas this year. I have to start with a funny story though, leave it to us, right? We headed out to Christmas Eve service at our church. Everyone was dressed and behaving reasonably well considering they were very excited about waking up to Santa's toys laid out everywhere the next morning. We arrive at church and Chad lets me and all the kids out at the covered front door b/c it was raining and very cold outside. I just decided to carry Sophie Kate in myself and asked Cooper to follow behind me with the stroller. So we all go in the front door, me and SK leading the way with 3 boys and a stroller following.

Let me just set the stage for you...there were people milling about here and there greeting each other with a hug and a"Merry Christmas," the church was serving various hot beverages such as coffee, hot chocolate and my personal favorite, hot cider. There were carolers singing and it was just an all around lovely atmosphere.

Cooper happens to see someone he knows, not a big deal right? Please remember he still has the stroller, which is still fine until his friend waves to him and then he waves back and then he rolls the stroller right into the baby Jesus. Yep, that's right knocks over the baby Jesus in the wooden Nativity right inside the front door of the church. Hello everyone, the McManics have arrived for Christmas Eve service. It's the kinda thing that makes you want to find out where we are sitting so that you can sit as far away from there as possible, doesn't it? Oh everything turned out fine, we set the baby Jesus back up and there was no harm done and most people were none the wiser.

They don't look a bit excited do they?

This was the first year that we were at our house on Christmas Eve. We usually spend Christmas Eve with Chad's family but we did that on the 23rd instead of the 24th this year. So this meant that we had to come up with something for everyone to eat after church. Chad and I both knew that a traditional southern Christmas dinner was out of the question b/c we didn't want to hear, "Ewww what is that?" and "Gross, I don't like/want that." We decided to make something that everyone would eat and something that we could all sit down and eat together. Are y'all ready for this? We had tacos/taco salad. I am not joking...everyone ate w/o a fuss, nobody complained and we all enjoyed it. So there you have it, how many of y'all can say you ate tacos on Christmas Eve and no they were not from Taco Bell.

Feliz Navidad!

Lots more Christmas fun to come, thanks for checking in on us.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

May you be filled with Joy as you celebrate the birth of our Savior.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Gift

The week leading up to Christmas Day is such a sweet and special time of year. All our gifts are bought and now we just get to relax, reflect and enjoy Christmas vacation with all our family. It seems after Christmas is over there is a mad rush to get everything cleaned up, I don't know why really, but that's just the way it is. So this is the period of time that I would stretch out if I could. I love the anticipation and excitement, I guess...and y'all always know that I love the lack of routine and schedule.

A peace and contentment have settled over our house and I could not be more thankful for that. As we focus on the birth of our Savior, I know that it is only by His grace and mercy that we are able to experience these days.

I must share with y'all how God is dealing with us in such a tender way. My oldest son came home from school a couple of weeks ago with some coupons he had made for everyone in the family. For example, he gave one to me and Chad for cleaning up his room. The one he gave Jacob stated that he would play a game of Jacob's choice with him. The coupons he gave to Grey and Sophie Kate were for reading a book to them. That's the one that got me...this is the child that has been the most standoffish with SK. For him to think of her at all would have been enough for me, but that he put such careful thought into it just blew me away. It was a very appropriate and genuine gesture on his part and believe me the gift of that moment was not lost on me.

Our little girl has been an absolute dream...just happy, smiling and enjoying life. You know, for over two years now I have not ever thought it was possible for SK or even us for that matter to enjoy anything. I have always thought...how could she possibly enjoy life with the situation she is in. Well, I have also been trying a new perspective and thankfully it has nothing to do with me! All it takes is one look at her, just one look at her as a person, as an individual to know without a doubt that she is happy...happy and content with her life, only her Creator could do that.

Our Creator God, our Savior who on Christmas day took the form of man to be born so that he could eventually die. Die for the sins of all mankind...there is no love greater, stronger, wider, or deeper than the love of Christ for us and that my friends is a very contented place to be and SK knows it.

"I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me." Galatians 2:20

Merry Christmas from our family to yours.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Are we having fun yet?

The last week of school before Christmas vacation is always ridiculously crazy...projects, parties and presents oh my! I am trying desperately to have all our Christmas gifts bought before the boys are out of school b/c there will be no time for it next week. I don't know about you but something in my mind sets off warning signals when I start contemplating taking 4 kids to Target/Walmart. It's just not in the best interest of anybody to do that.

So this week I am running myself ragged trying to finish up everything and by everything I also mean therapy. Yes, Sophie girl, this is the last week that you will go to therapy in 2009...y'all she's just beside herself.

I have also been able to spend some time at Grey's school doing this...

The finished product...

Huey, Duey, and Louie...they crack me up.

Sooo ready for things to slow down and just spend time with these guys and their daddy.

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

A Tale of Three Elves

We have had an addition to our elf family this year. We have had Birch and Georgie now for 3 years, but this year we've added Grey's elf Jackson to the bunch. It's a fun tradition each year the day after Thanksgiving for the elves to arrive for the Christmas season.

I have been very excited for Grey to get his elf this year, so you can imagine my horror when for the first week after his elf arrived he kept referring to him as his scarecrow. Why, for the love, why? He is a darling little elf dressed in elf clothes and a little elf hat, but no, I kept getting asked, "Mama, where's my scarecrow? It's not a scarecrow Grey it's an elf, stop calling it that!!"

Yes, they are all wearing bandanas...don't ask...that's just how they roll.

Meanwhile our elves have been running around engaging in various mischievous activities around the house. You've got your standard snowball fight with cotton balls, the elves added a new twist to that this year and brought out qtips like they were throwing spears at each other, cut us some slack we have 3 boys. You've also got your standard toilet papering of the family room.

Birch, Georgie and Jackson have also mixed it up a bit this year by playing a heated game of Star Wars monopoly one night, I think Grey's elf was actually winning. They have also been in SK's room getting into trouble in there as well...SK was not amused.

They love watching Christmas movies and TV shows with the boys. In particular, they favor just hanging out and watching the boys play video games. They totally make me laugh when the boys set them up on the kitchen table at night with their crackers, cups of water and magic snowflakes.

Who knows, maybe the elves will hang the boy's underwear all over the Christmas tree again this year. It is a fan favorite around here, they are boys after all.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter Wonderland

I can't remember the last time we have had snow in Alabama in December, it just doesn't happen, except for last Saturday when this happened...

and when this happens, then these guys do this...

and this...

and then I make them stop and do this and they get irritated with me.

It was short lived but fun while it lasted!

Next we were off to the Bass Pro Shop to see Santa, yes you heard me correctly. SK and I had never been there and boy was it a sight to behold. Lots of shooting galleries, driving of remote control cars and lots of wild game stuffed and mounted everywhere...SK was not impressed, but her brothers sure were.

The G-man was not going to be left out.

Grey did not know what to think about this fella and quite frankly neither did I.

This is our picture with Santa the second time around. Yep, that's right we went through the line twice. The first time up, Grey decided against sitting in Santa's lap. After being bribed with various food treats he thought better of it, so we got back in line for round two. Thank goodness the line was short at the time. Isn't that the goal of having your Santa picture every year, that everyone ends up miserable...thanks G-man you did not disappoint.

We took two extra kids with us to Bass Pro Shop (friends of Cooper and Jacob) so considering that we had set ourselves up for failure to begin with, it really went well...until the very end when we had overstayed our welcome and our little red head fell completely apart. It was nap time after all, we really have no one to blame but ourselves for that one.

Sister was so good, she has had a great couple of weeks. She has been so happy and in such a great mood, she was an absolute dream during our visit with Santa.

Our little Mrs. Claus...

Thanking God for our happy little girl. Thanks for checking in on us.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

They're Back

Sophie Kate's seizures are back...

They have been back for about a month now, occurring anywhere from 3-6 times a day, until...

We started her on her seizure medicine. You know, the medicine we haven't needed in months and months and months b/c her seizures had been so few and far between? Yeah, that one.

We started her medicine two weeks ago and since then SK has only had 2 seizures.

This is Sophie Kate on seizure medicine...

No, my point here is not that we are happy about the return of SK's seizures. My point here is that one of my worries about having my girl put on seizure medication was that her beautiful smiles might disappear. I'm here to tell you, God is in the details. I don't want to miss Him b/c I am too busy being overwhelmed by something I have no control over to begin with.

Please pray for our girl as we continue on this earthly journey with her.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 "Rejoice always; Pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Still Partying

I cannot believe that it is December and I am still talking about Sophie Kate's birthday...if she wasn't so darling she would absolutely stink from her spoiled rotten-ness. SK and her daddy had a joint birthday party over the Thanksgiving weekend b/c all of Chad's family was in town. Still, Miss Sassy doesn't share the spotlight real well so it was pretty much all about her...just the way she likes it.

Yep, she's still two and yep she's still wearing the tutu...

I told y'all she doesn't share well. That face is killing me, "back off buddy, you're stealing my show."

So sweet, I love how they love her.

Seriously, child you can be mad if you want to but this really is the last birthday party you are having this year.

Girlfriend doesn't like to be told no, so I don't do it very often. Her smile breathes life to me, I'll do just about anything to see it.

Psalm 16:11 "You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever."