Thursday, December 31, 2015

Random Photos 2015

Some random photos from 2015.  Lots of great memories!

Family History and Blogs

One of the major reasons I blog:

At the end of every year I create a book.  Mei Mei especially loves looking at past years.  When she first came home she was sad she wasn't in any of our photo/blog books.  So sad I actually glued her photo on to some pages.

I like simple/easy when it comes to my books.  I use blog 2 print.  It's not cheap, but it's probably no more expensive than printing photos and buying photo albums.  Plus, if my house was on fire my blog books are one thing I would grab!  
As always, I don't receive anything for recommendations--but if you love it send me chocolate!  I've tried other methods and this one is just sooo easy!  I do like to keep my text and photos in the same order as they appear on my blog so I use the "snapshot" layout (even though it takes more pages)  I don't print comments (my apologies to my two true-blue commenters!).  I like the hardcover (not deluxe) and keep photos medium size.

I've missed some posts for 2015, so I'll be posting here the next few days, then moving them back into their chronological order.  Once I make my blog book for 2015 I hope to do a big blog facelift!

Here's to a wonderful 2016!  Happy New Year everyone!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Christmas 2015

Christmas break is going so fast!  And I realize more than ever that all my babies are growing up!  And that means that having them all home at the same time is becoming nearly non-existent! 
Christmas Eve included church and skyping with Will and his family.  Later in the evening the Christmas Elf brought Star Wars pjs and then most of the big kids spent the night.
 On Christmas I didn't take many pictures--and most of those didn't turn out.  I really just wanted to soak in the joy.  We have much to be thankful for this year. 
The next day we headed up to my sister's cabin, which is always fun!  LOTS of snow this year, and all the kids got a chance to drive snowmobiles.  Some excited kiddos! 
 Yes, all those photos were really necessary!  The last night we had a bonfire and then released Chinese lanterns.  I always think of the movie Tangled.  We write our hopes and dreams for the new year and then release the lanterns into the night sky.  It's always magical! 

There was also a tutorial of making cinnamon rolls (I'm married to a fabulous baker and should weigh 2,000 pounds!) and the kids made homemade ice cream.
And then we started the long drive home--which included the freeway closing mid-trip due to black ice and accidents.  Yikes!  We spent several hours in a small town (thank you hometown pizza parlor and Walmart!), and then carefully drove the rest of the way home, praying for safety all the way!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Santa and Mrs. Claus Sit Courtside

Every year at Christmas time, Hubby and I get away for the weekend to fill Santa's sleigh.   We shop 'til we drop, but also make time for us.  It's a great break in the midst of craziness.  Sometimes we stay in a hotel, but we've also stayed in campground yurts.  We have some funny stories about freezing cold yurts and the lack of romantic dreams, but really, it's about time together.
This year several of our kids had "a box of food" on their Santa list.  I guess you know your kids are from a big family when they want food for Christmas!  The grocery store was one of our first stops.  It was embarrassing to check out with an entire cart of junk food, but I know there will be some happy kids!
And we had planned to go to the movie in the evening, but James called and invited us to the Blazer game.  He had received four tickets from a very generous acquaintance. 
Four COURTSIDE tickets. 
Our son must know how to hobnob with the right people!  It was AMAZING!!!  And James might just be my new favorite son! 

In all seriousness, it does make my mommy heart happy that he invited his family when he could have invited his friends. 
First, dinner with some fancy shmancy food. 
Patrick was the lucky recipient of the fourth ticket.  He LOVES basketball! 

Do James and Patrick look like twins separated at birth or what? 
Nineteen years apart, almost to the day.  (Nothing like calling your freshman at college and saying, "Guess what!?  Mommy's pregnant!"  Ha!)
And then the game.  Wow.  Just wow.  Those guys are so big!  I never realized how much fun they have during warm-ups.  It's awesome seeing the game up-close and personal!
I might never be able to sit in our normal nose-bleed section again! 
A very special night with some very awesome people!  Thankful for the generosity and love!