"What lies behind us, and what lies before us are small matters
compared to what lies within us."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Holiday Happenings

I can't believe it is almost New Year's. I haven't gotten over Christmas yet! 

Despite the threat that the man in red wasn't going to come due to several children being on the naughty list, somehow the children managed to be good and sweet and Santa did come!!! 

 I like to have one person open one present at a time, while everyone else has to wait for their turn. I also cruelly make the order go from youngest to oldest. Just my little way of saying thank you for making me stay up all night wrapping the presents. 

This was a really special Christmas because we busted Great out of her assisted living home for the day. 

Isabella gave Francesca her favorite present! 

Elliot was not thrilled with his Santa boxers.  

Anastasia made Grandma a sweet sign. 

Isabella thoughtfully gave Grandma her very own purse because she knew Grandma had always liked it.

I don't think Anastasia could be smiling any wider.

Little Catherine got a jewelry music box of her own. I am taking bets on how long until it is broken.

Thank you for my earrings Isabella! 

Anastasia has always wanted a china doll and Santa brought her one! 

Doesn't Isabella look so grown up?

The kitchen was a big hit! 

My sweet Isaac, enjoying someone's pillow.

Our "Happy Birthday Jesus" cake. There is always, always a good reason to have cake. The little corner on the right is plain because Grandma doesn't like icing. I must not have gotten my affinity for sweets from her side of the family.

We got to continue our celebrating with a visit from Grandpa and Memaw. 

Francesca learned very quickly what wrapped packages were all about. 

Sibling love. I like to call them #1 and #4.

My little mini-me.

Victoria got the coolest instrument toy from Grandpa and Memaw. The music is really amazing and kids can mix and match the instruments to make all kinds of new songs. Victoria gets so excited when she sees the violin piece that she starts to scream with joy. 

Francesca is Lego crazy! 

Much focus is required to build a house made out of 653 pieces. 

Finally, a super duper smile from Catherine! 

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Present For You

Merry Christmas! My present to you all is finally changing my header picture! I have had a ton of people ask me to change it, so here you all are! 

Here are a few more pictures from our photo session. (I have been working on my photography lately.) Most of the kids were very willing to pose.

Victoria, however, was a really tough audience. It took a lot to get a little smile.  

I really like the expression on Elliot's face here. Five sisters can be tiring! 

Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! 

Monday, December 24, 2012

A Christmas Eve Poem

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, 
people were itching and it wasn't a louse. 
(ewwww.......pin worms)

The stockings were thrown in the laundry without care, 
because the children knew I would have to clean them from there. 

The children were bickering and whining too, 
so instead of baking cookies, they got lots of cleaning to do,

While visions of solo vacations danced in my head, 
the dog threw up, right next to my bed. 

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter;  I banged my knee trying to see 
what was the matter. 

When, what to my wondering eyes did appear,  the garbage tipped over and 
made a huge smear.

Then in a twinkling, I heard a loud gurgle and flush, 
and hoped with the plunger that I would have the magic touch.

Then I whistled and shouted and called them by name:
Now Isabella, now Anastasia, now Catherine too, 
hurry up and go find your shoe. 

On Francesca, on Victoria, my sweet little dears, 
take a nap now while I stick cotton in my ears. 

I spoke not a word, but went straight to my work, 
tossing the presents into garbage bags 
with a jerk.

And then I exclaimed as I examined my plight, 
"Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"

Saturday, December 22, 2012


Less than 72 hours until Christmas! The girls are counting the minutes. We decided to make our gingerbread houses today. This year, I got smart and everyone got to decorate their own house.

I think they should be a disclaimer on the box saying that the houses shown do not actually represent the finished product. Maybe we should have read the instuctions. 

Anastasia took her work very seriously.

Catherine was really into popping the packing bubbles.

She was not into sharing. (I gotta hide that pumpkin shirt!)

Joy, joy! My own candies!!! Francesca calls them "k k".

Victoria likes to live on the edge, licking icing off the knife with reckless abandon. 

Victoria abandoned any pretense of actually decorating her house. 

Such precision. 

I finally found something everyone can do together that keeps them busy: the box. Yea for cardboard! 

Time to watch one of my favorite movies, "Prancer". I highly recommend it! 

I just have to share my big find! I have been looking for a play kitchen for the little ones, but they cost a fortune.  I found this one at a thrift store for only $10! I can't wait to see the kids' faces on Christmas!

Did I mention only three more days until Christmas, not that I am excited or anything.