Monday, December 23, 2013

Our Family Christmas

We usually spend actual Christmas Day in Texas with our families, so we celebrated Christmas with the four of us at our home today.  I love having family traditions and doing something special with just our little family, but I also love being with my parents and grandparents on Christmas, so this is how we make it all work.

We started with a Christmas Eve tradition of baking cookies for Santa.

And we read the Christmas story with a fun little activity from Family Life called What God Wants for Christmas.  You read the story and open up each box as the story progresses.  The last box has a mirror inside because that's what God wants for Christmas….YOU!

Some of the cookies we baked helped keep their attention on the story.  :)

The girls went to bed, then Santa came!
 Santa really brought them more than usual this year, since Adeline decided to ask him for something out of the blue when we went to visit him.

And of course Santa couldn't bring an extra gift for Adeline and not Annabel!

I think this bounce house is going to do wonders for our sanity on the many long, cold winter days ahead.

Mommy and Daddy gave each of them three gifts.
Annabel: Snow White dress, personalized plate, & a fairy treehouse with figurines.
Adeline: Cinderella dress, Hello Kitty sticker activity book, & a Fur Real kitty cat.

Daddy got a helicopter he can control with his iPhone, some shirts, and a gift certificate for a concealed handgun license course.

We ate a yummy breakfast with our fun plates and new cups that were in their stockings.

It's a good thing Adeline told Santa what she really wanted, because this horse has by far been her favorite toy.

My loot: a new Hobo wallet, necklaces, leggings, and a Victoria's Secret gift card.

We plan to spend the day at home just playing with our toys and enjoying each other's company.  What a happy happy day!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

A December to Remember

Does that sound like a jewelry slogan?  Hah!  Anyway, it has been quite the December to remember around here.  Let me fill you in…

Our elf, Dee, was here waiting for us when we got back from Thanksgiving in Texas!  She brought monogrammed Christmas pjs & she even had on a monogrammed shirt, herself!  I think she picked up a few tips from us southerners after spending the previous two Christmases with us.  :)

She filled up our advent calendar one day.

And we went to see Santa.  It took Annabel a few minutes to warm up enough to sit by him, but she wasn't about to smile about it or say a word to him.  Adeline, on the other hand, told Santa she wanted a toy pony.

Caroline hung out with us one day and I was crazy enough to take all three girls to Walmart before an impending snow storm.  The girls were perfect, but the store was packed and since I didn't have a list, I was up & down every aisle about 5 times.  I felt like I'd run a marathon when I left.  I got many sympathetic looks from people.  I think they were thinking, "Oh bless her heart.  A four year old, twins, and pregnant again!"

I bought these really cute page-a-day Christmas countdown activity books for the girls.  We've only done about half of them, but they are fun.  I just haven't been very good about doing much of anything here lately.

We had quite the ice/snow storm, so Jon worked from home a couple days.  I laugh every time I look at this picture.  I reminded him several times that we had plenty adult-sized work spaces.

And, if we're at home, this is the typical state of dress (or undress) that Annabel is in.  I can NOT keep clothes on this child!

After a day of ice, it finally snowed…like 8 inches!  Adeline absolutely loved it and we could barely keep her inside, but Annabel was not a fan.  Jon got the sled out and took Adeline sledding.  The videos are priceless.  She zoomed down those hills without even an ounce of fear.  We took Annabel once and she enjoyed it, too as long as she had someone on the sled with her.

They both loved getting hot chocolate afterwards, though.

After three days of being snowed in, we ventured out to see the movie Frozen.  It was Annabel's first movie theater experience, and Adeline's second.  They both LOVED it and so did I.  I think it may be my new favorite Disney movie.  It's about two sisters & their unconditional love for each other.  So sweet!

Our church had a live nativity one Sunday morning. It kills me how Adeline looks so grown up in this picture.  I still can't believe I have a four year old!

Adeline said, "Is that the real baby Jesus?"

One morning we went to decorate Christmas cookies at Mollie's house with Caroline, Westin, & Reagan.

And we made some cute Christmas trees at home (the only Christmas craft I managed this year).
 And Annabel had a random 12 hour stomach bug that day.  Thankfully nobody else ever got it.

I've been stressing over the fact that Adeline didn't know how to write her name.  I felt bad that I'm an OT and had not really even attempted working on it with her.  I'd had her trace it once and we looked at letters and matched them up a lot, but never really wrote it.  One day she said, "I want to write my name.  A first then D, then what, Mommy?"  I sounded it out and she said, "Ok, then an E…"  It went on like this with her telling me the correct letter that came next and very few verbal cues from me like, "it's a straight line down first" and this is what she produced!  I was in shock!!  Since then she's been writing her name all over the place.

I saw someone post about this movie on Facebook, so I ordered it.  It really is great.  It's very biblically accurate and holds the girls' attention because it's almost all music.  I highly recommend it.  Since watching this several times and me reading the Christmas story to them at least once a day, Adeline has started randomly shouting, "Glory to God in the highest!"  It cracks me up how it just comes out of the blue, but also warms my heart.

Dee brought us all candy canes one day and wore a matching candy cane striped skirt.

Adeline has had a major growth spurt lately, and these Disney pjs run small, but it cracks me up how little they are now and my parents just gave them to her at her birthday.

This is what the girls gave their KDO teachers for Christmas.  A little antique china tea cup & saucer filled with peppermints.

Last Sunday was our church's Christmas concert performance.  What talent!  The girls were in awe.

Then on Monday they had their KDO class parties.

We're trying to get as much wear out of our Christmas attire as possible.  The top Adeline has on in this picture is a dress my MIL made her when she was 1.  It's reversible and very versatile.  We've gotten a lot of wear out of it.  The outfit Annabel has on was given to us by our neighbor.  So sweet!  The two dresses they wore to their parties are from a consignment sale.

I had my big 20 week ultrasound this week and Whitt is growing and developing right on track (slightly bigger than on track of course).  I love his sweet profile and I love that hand right up by his chin.

We went to visit our elderly friends at the nursing home with a big group of our friends this week.

We also went to see the lights on the square in Fayetteville with Aunt Juliet and Cousin Murry one night.  Juliet bought us tickets to ride the Cinderella coach.  My girls were in heaven!
Wow!  What a busy month we've had and we haven't even gotten to Christmas yet.  I love this time of year!

Monday, December 9, 2013


We have some big news to report…

I'm so behind on posting about this that I can even tell you what we're having!  We knew for two weeks before we told our family because we wanted to do it in person when we went home for Thanksgiving.  It was really hard to not let it slip.

It's a BOY!!!!

Jon bought me a gun when we were in Texas for Thanksgiving because he said he just couldn't wait to take his son shooting.

His name will be Whittington Ellis Richey.  Whittington is my maiden name and Ellis is Jon's mom's maiden name.  We will call him Whitt.  I love that he will have three last names.  Sounds very manly to me.  

Whitt is due to arrive in May 2014.  This pregnancy has definitely been my hardest one.  I'm not sure if it's because I'm older, I have two others to chase around, that it's a boy, or maybe a combination of all three.  I was more nauseous than ever the first trimester.  Nothing ever sounded good to eat, so I survived on cereal, which caused my protein levels to drop and I almost passed out.  Then I got a horrible UTI where I was sure I was dying (I'd never had a UTI before and I wasn't' having the normal symptoms).  Now I'm having some serious vein/ankle swelling issues in my left leg.  I'll be going to the doctor tomorrow to have that checked out.  However, it's all worth it to be holding a healthy baby boy in my arms in May.  Please pray for that!  We can't wait to meet him!

What is so sweet about all of this is that Adeline has been asking me for months for a baby brother.  We didn't even tell her we were pregnant until we told all our family because we knew she'd tell.  Whenever she'd ask me for a brother I'd just say, "You need to talk to God about that."  One day she said, "I asked God yesterday for a baby brother and He said He's building one for me right now."  This was before we knew it was a boy and before we'd told her we were even pregnant.  It melted my heart. When we did find out it was a boy and told her, she didn't even bat an eye.  It was just like she was saying "duh, I told you that several weeks ago!"  I just love child-like faith.  

Then He called a child to Him and had him stand among them.  "I assure you," He said, "unless you are converted and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child - this one is the greater in the kingdom of heaven.  And whoever welcomes one child like this in My name welcomes Me."  Matthew 18:2-5