Saturday, January 5, 2013

Project Life 2012 - Week 52

December 23 - 31

Week 52!! Wow!! Yippee!!
I know it was a little doubtful at times that I was going to keep it up for all 52 weeks, but I did it :) I LOVE this project!! I love looking back on the every-day-ness of our lives and seeing how things have changed. And how things have stayed the same!

Without further delay, here is the last week(+) of 2012!!

On the 23rd we spent a wonderful evening at our friends' home for dinner. The plans were last minute, and it was so much fun! 
 When we got home, Bennett and Brad snuggle up to see what how Jotham was doing on his adventure today. (This is a new advent book that we got this year and we all 3 really loved it - we've had a hard time not reading ahead some days!!)

Christmas Eve
Bennett and Nana read the Christmas story for us (something that they had planned to do as a surprise). It was really neat.

Our family :)

After a great morning and afternoon at Nana's we moved to our house. Here Bennett is, lighting the candles on Jesus' birthday cake. Yes, he learned how to light matches over the Christmas Break... :)

Christmas Day
Bennett and Nana wait (somewhat) patiently at the top of the stairs
I think it was around 5:30

And he's off to see what Santa brought!!
There are so many pictures (although I did put the camera down a lot more this Christmas, which was nice), so I'm just sharing a couple. Santa brought Bennett exactly what he asked for, plus some!! :)

We had a great time with Santa's goodies while we waited for Evie to arrive. Once she (and Gigi and Bubba!!) arrived, we dug into the gifts under the tree. Here is Evie opened her present from Bebbett (as she says it :)  An Auburn shirt!! I think she likes it!

After our traditional breakfast at our house (and more present opening) we got cleaned up and headed over to Gigi and Bubba's for lunch. Here I am with my boy <3 font="font">

My 2 guys.
I'm playing around with the flash on my camera a bunch... it takes a lot to get it just right :) 
It was a fabulous Christmas - one of the best that I can remember in a long time! I was totally prepared (presents wrapped, food prepared, house ready) well before-hand, so I was able to just enjoy it all. But the main thing, I think, is that I focused this year on just being together and not on the 'stuff' and the expectations. Amazing how it all worked out, isn't it :)

On the 26th, Mom, Angie, and I went on our traditional bargain hunting trip. I have a picture of them, but I know that they will appreciate me not sharing it here :) So, instead, I will share my bargains (the boots were not bargains, but an exchange - but I'm still super excited about them!!) Another successful excursion!!

While we were shopping, Bennett was building. All day long. Building.

On the 27th Bennett had basketball. Afterward, we went to Nana's to help her take her Christmas stuff down.

On the 28th Bennett finished up his 'Thank You' notes. I love how motivated he is to get a task done!!
 I had a vision of the boys by the light of the Christmas tree, so they let me play around a little that night. :)

On the 29th, The Wargos came down and the adults went out to eat at Cafe Dupont. Man, that flash is bright!! :)

On the 30th, the deer feeder went up...
and rockets were sent up at the the park. Fun!!

 We celebrated New Year's Eve with the fireworks that Pa gave Bennett for Christmas. Super fun (and a little loud at times). Bennett was very concerned that the police were going to come - he had been searching the internet for days for laws concerning fireworks in our area and couldn't find any. I love that he is such a good citizen!

This made me very nervous, but I know that I'm just supposed to get over it. Long gone are the days of my little safety boy :) The fireworks fun was over by a little after 7:30, so we got the kids cleaned up, they did a little New Year's survey that was really cute (Bennett biggest goal for 2013 is to be able to throw the ball where HE wants it to go, which I think is a great goal!) The kids were in bed before 9:30 and the adults made it until the East Coast ball drop ;) It was a great night!

2012 has been a great year! Our family has been very blessed. 
I can't wait to see what God has planned for 2013 :)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

25 Days of Giving

This year we decided to make our Advent a little different by doing at least one Act of Giving each day leading up to Christmas Day. I have to tell you - this was one of the best things that we have done in a long time!
Before December 1st, we sat down and made a list of potential ideas of things we could do and then when the 1st came, we got to work. Here are a few of the things that we did...

A gift for the UPS man (the card said 'Thanks for trudging up our hill for us') 
I order a lot of things from the internet...Have you seen our hill?  :)

One night we picked up the tab for the car behind us at the drive through. That was so fun! The expression of the girl at the counter was priceless :)

One of my favorites was leaving gifts for the garbage men....
 They come really early (before it gets light even) so we knew that we needed the gifts to be evident so that they wouldn't throw them away. Brad put them out on his way to work and took this picture. 
Bennett made these great signs for the fronts of the bags. Aren't they great? :)

When we first thought of doing the acts of giving, the one thing that Bennett wanted to do was give a Ninjago book to his friend Jude. We bought it right away and just held on to it until the right time... 
Well, Jude got the flu the 2nd week of December, so we knew that was the right time for the surprise :)
You can't really tell in the picture, but Bennett is sneaking up to Jude's front door to leave the package. It was so cute!

 On Bennett's field trip to the cathedrals we fed parking meters

A gift for our mail lady

Some goodies for the fire station

Making goodies for his friends at school

Gifts for the teachers

We did other things like adopt angels from the Angel tree at church, shop with and for families in need through our Sunday School class, giving food to our church's food pantry, etc. 
I LOVE LOVE LOVE doing this! I have to admit that I totally got into this more than Bennett did... but that's ok. I think that he will 'get' it as he gets older. He did enjoy the giving, but he just wasn't as excited about it as I was generally. I just think there is something so exciting about giving in the spirit of Christ and praying over those people who are receiving those gifts. What a blessing!

This is something we will definitely be doing each year during Advent! And maybe again just randomly throughout the year ;) There is no feeling as good as giving.

The last Project Life 2012 post is in the works! Stay tuned :)

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Project Life 2012 - Week 51

December 16 - 22

December is just whizzing by...

 On Sunday, Bennett got to acolyte with his good friend Cole. I'm not supposed to take pictures during the service, so please don't tell anyone :) 
He was super excited to get to wear the white robe!!

 Also on Sunday we went out to eat with Evie (and Gigi and Bubba too, of course!!) Going out to lunch with them is one of the highlights of our week! Cousin love...

 On Monday, the 17th, Brad was post-call so after school we surprised Bennett by taking him to the movies. Nana came along too! The movie was great!!

 After putting Bennett to bed on Monday night, I couldn't find Brad anywhere. Finally, I looked out the kitchen window only to find him bundled up outside on the patio, studying for his upcoming test while on the look-out for deer. It just  makes me laugh. Sadly, he's not seen any deer yet :(

 On Tuesday, Poodle (Bennett's elf) left him a fleece blanket for us to make. It was a fun project!
 Even daddy got in on the project!

 On Wednesday, Bennett and I ventured to the $ store to purchase a gift for the gift swap for his school party. After much debate, he picked a bag of cookies 'n cream santa candies. He hopes to bring it home with him after the swap!!

 The 20th was a sporty day... We started off with Coach D (a GREAT lesson!!)
 and ended up with a little basketball practice.

 On Friday, it was party day! The party started at 9:30 and Bennett was so excited because both Brad and I could attend. This is the first year that Brad has ever been able to attend! FUN!

 Bennett drew #14 in the 'Dirty Santa' game, so it was a pretty good chance that he'd get a good gift. Here he is hiding his cookies 'n cream santas behind his back...
and it worked! He brought those bad boys home with him ;)
It was a super fun party and we were heading home by 11. Bennett went to spend the night with Nana and Brad and I went to see the Hobbit. It was a fun date afternoon.

On Saturday, Nana gave Bennett a lesson in how to make her famous yeast rolls. I'm really hoping that he gets good at it ;) 
She reports that he is a great helper...

Santa is coming soon!! Hope you've been good!

Project Life 2012 - Week 50

December 9 - 15

Welcome to week 2 of December Daily!!

On Sunday, we were so surprised when Bennett was asked to light the Advent candle during the Sunday School assembly. How exciting!

On Monday, we Bennett made our Rudolph gingerbread house. He had been DYING to make it!! He did a great job - he is quite and artist!

On Tuesday, Bennett wanted to go shopping for the Christmas gifts that he would give to the family. He spent his own money to buy gifts for everyone - it was SO much fun :)
I wonder what he got me... ;)

12/12/12 at 12:12!!!!!
Bennett's teacher was kind enough to let me come to his class during recess and snap a few pictures at 12:12. I was so happy! 
They were playing football when I got there...
I was even happier when Bennett came running to me when he saw me :) I love my boy!

On the morning of the 13th, we had our first deer sighting! I was so excited - I paged Brad at work (he had found a little nest up on the hill a couple of days before he had bought a salt lick and some corn for the hill) FUN!! Yes, they are in this picture - but you have to look veeerrrryyyy carefully :)

 On the evening of the 13th Angie and I hosted our annual Girls' Christmas party. It was SO much fun!!

This is our little ornament that each of the girls got to make at the party. Love it!

Here is Bennett wrapping his first Christmas present! I taught him how to do it and he is really good at it!! I mean, REALLY good!!

On Saturday, we had another baking day. We made ginger snaps, chocolate cherry cordials, and nutter butter cookies. YUM! Bennett was an excellent helper - and an expert taste tester ;)

We love the holidays and everything that comes along with it!!