Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Amazingly, Nathan had New Year's Eve off, and our big plans included partying with our kids and trying to stay up until midnight. We made lots of food to snack on, watched movies, kissed at midnight, and then went to bed.

Jacob and Daddy
Emmaline and Mommy
Gabrielle and Aunt Katie

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Why I Haven't Had Time to Blog Recently

In October, I had the brilliant idea to make fleece blankets for my nieces and nephews and our 3 kids for Christmas. Jo-Ann's had their fleece for 1/2 price, so I bought enough to make all 7 blankets. It was over two months until Christmas, so I had plenty of time to work on them.

Fast forward to the beginning of December...I haven't even started the blankets yet! My first blanket took me 2 1/2 hours because I'd never made one before. By the time I started blanket #4, I had it down to a science and it only took me 1 1/2 hours from start to finish. I finished my final blanket of the Christmas season on Sunday and wanted to post the end results. These blankets are super warm and comfy and have gotten rave reviews from the recipients.

Andy's - Do you know how hard it was to find a pattern that a 15 year-old would like ?!
Ellie's has ballerinas
Emmaline and Kayla got matching snail blankets
Colton got soccer players because he played on his first soccer team this year
Jacob loves his pirate blanket
Marleigh got random flowers, but coincidentally, it matches her bedroom!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas with Dee's Family

Our last Christmas celebration was this evening with my sister, Dee, and her family. We enjoyed Joe's pizza and then opened presents.

Cuddling Cousins
Ellie, Jacob, and Colton
Katie and Ellie try out her new plastic containers
Colton liked his new soccer player fleece blanket
Emmaline can't wait to try out her new art supplies
Ellie and her new "Vet Barbie"
My nephew, Andy, and his skull fleece blanket
Jacob got a Crayola Glow Station

Andy's Deployment Ceremony

Andy leaves for Iraq next week. His deployment ceremony was today in Blue Ash.

Andy and Mom
Dad and Andy
Katie and Andy
Andy and Alora

Sunday, December 28, 2008

A Night with Friends/Aunt Katie Babysits

Tonight we went to dinner with some friends from high school. This was our 15th year to get together at Christmas time. We met at the Cheesecake Factory and had a fun time reminiscing about the "good ol' days" and sharing what we've done over the past year. Nathan, Becky, and I have been friends since kindergarten. We met Melissa in 5th grade, and Chris and Aaron were added to the group in high school. Two couples were missing, but we're hoping that they can join us again next year.
Front row in black: Aaron & Melissa Harlow
Left side of table in back: Nathan and Me
Right side of table in back: Chris and Becky McCaskey

While we were gone, Aunt Katie spent the evening with the kiddos. They absolutely love spending time with her!

Making pizza for dinner

Emmaline waits patiently for someone to come rescue her

Ellie, Aunt Katie, and Jacob with the cookies they decorated

Ready to Box
Nathan's parents gave Jacob these inflatable boxing gloves for Christmas.
They had fun trying them out tonight!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas with Nathan's Family

Today we celebrated Christmas with Nathan's parents, brother, and grandparents.


Gotta love this happy girl!

Granddaddy tries to figure out Emmaline's new radio while she visits with Mema

Jacob and Daddy
The kids made us construction paper stockings for Christmas

Gabrielle and Mommy
They made reindeer ornaments too

Grandma and Jacob with the Easy Bake Oven for the computer

Ellie got lots of Littlest Pet Shop stuff

Emmy loves to cruise around the house with her new doll and stroller

Ellie and her new Barbie head
She can't wait to do her hair and make-up

Jacob and Uncle David

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas with the Stovers

We went to my parents' house in the afternoon to enjoy a late lunch, and of course, more presents.

Mom shows off the photo album I made for her of our camping trip to Cowan Lake in June

Emmaline reads a new book with Aunt Katie

Happy Birthday Dad!
The kids helped him open his presents

I love this shirt we got for Andy.
It says, "I gave up Video Games! It was the worst 15 minutes of my life!"

Ellie got a real porcelain butterfly tea set

Jacob loves "I Spy" books, so this game was perfect for him

Emmy checks out the beautiful girl in the back of the mirrored china cabinet

Merry Christmas to All!

Our Family Christmas

It's nice to spend Christmas morning at our house with the kids. We open presents, eat a yummy breakfast and then let the kids play with their new toys. Jacob was up at 6:30 this morning, but thankfully, Nathan let me sleep until 8:30 before we all headed downstairs to open gifts.

Ellie sat on the steps and cried because I wouldn't let her wear a dress and eat breakfast before we opened presents. She is SO emotional!

Emmaline clapped her hands when she saw her presents

Jacob's face says it all

Eventually, Ellie came down to join us

Emmy and her new blanket that Mommy made

Ellie with hers

And now, Jacob with his

Emmaline got a new doll stroller/walker

I couldn't resist getting Nathan this cop-themed calendar from Chick-fil-A

Mommy and Emmy

Jacob and Ellie with their new art studio for the computer

Enjoying monkey bread and breakfast casserole while watching the Christmas parade