Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Day #1 / Week With Nanny

We picked my mom up from the airport last week inbetween snowfalls and she made it through the 60 degree difference like a pro.
The kids were so excited and enjoyed the fun week immensely. They're getting old enough now to know what traditions to expect, although, there are some differences in the winter activities for sure!
We ate at our favorite Mexican restaurant, Paradiso, where I grew up going as a child. Kids also eat free there on Sunday. Yes, we have them all scoped out. The kids were extatic to get fruity drinks, (mom's treat) and we just spent the rest of the afternoon hanging out catching up, until it was time to get ready for the Christmas program.
The kids all had their own speaking parts, and everyone but Austin actually said their part! Hooray! Three out of four! Well, Keilah Grace did improve from last year she went up to sing without her Nuky this year! But she didn't sing a single note either.... Hmmmm. Oh well, it was still amazingly cute of course but I know I'm biased. It was special for my mom to see something the children were in as she doesn't get to do that since we're so far away. Enjoy the pix! Sophie's wearing Lexie's Christmas dress. Wow, does time fly... More later!






















































































Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Brady Turns Six!!

Brady turned six on Sunday and started the day off like any other six year old would choose - sugar cereal, and lots of it!
We went to church where he gladly chose some treasure out of the birthday box, and then we were off to our favorite Chinese restaurant for lunch, Snapdragon. 5 out of our 7 children eat free there. Hurray!
We the spent the afternoon playing and putting together his birthday gifts. Who's crazy idea is all these twisties anyways?! His favorites were his new Lego sets and the Road Ripper from Nanny. It's hilarious! It sings "Mountain Mama," and yes, it's very loud at 6am.
He chose lasagana for supper along with double chocolate fudge cake. It was a last minute choice for him, and he insisited on skateboards of all things. Don't ask me why. I don't even know if he's seen anyone skateboard.
I can't believe how fast time flies. I remember the day he was born. He was my earliest and smallest baby. Well, he's still my earliest baby, (riser) but he's also my biggest child. Can you tell? He loves food! I was so excited and I must say proud to have a boy. Thank you Lord! We love him so much!





































Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Lowdown On Laundry

This pile is actually the equivalent of two loads of laundry, my last two for the week. Yaaa! It also has to be pretreated mind you, if I can even hope for all the stains to come out. We go through at least one bottle of Shout a week, the BIG ONE from Sam's! Yikes!




I have a load in both of these overworked and underpaid ladies. Thank goodness for a top-loading washer with LOTS OF SPACE!
Alas, my drying rack is almost always covered with lots of these. And now, this time of year, I have lots of coats, hats, and mittens to wash after the children find the lone patch of mud in the yard with all this snow!



1 weeks worth of lauundry at the Rivers: notice the towels piled high on the tables in the back, and don't forget what you just saw above, cause' I wasn't done yet! And oh, the bedding was actually on the beds already after I pulled an all-nighter, the only way I can seem to get anything done these days.
I've decided that when my little people stop peeing and pooing, can make it to the toilet to barf, and eat like a person instead of cookie monster, I might have less laundry, but then again, I will have 7 teenagers at one time. I'll keep you posted, that is, after I do my five loads for the day.



It's Beginning to Look Alot Like Christmas...

Well, it's taken me longer than any other year, but I'm finally all decked out for the Holidays. Where does time go? I was slightly tempted to not do any of this but, decided to give in and just put the work in. I hope my family enjoys it! I got rid of things that I really didn't love last year, so I didn't have as much , but except for my lonely looking piano and that banister above it that are screaming for some greenery, I am happy with this room. Ok, the birdcage needs embellishment too, but I can't get that silly small door open for the life of me! I love after Christmas clearance and thrift stores so they'll have to wait, cause I'm not paying full price!



This snazzy looking reindeer in the window was actauly a dumpster dive find from my sis-in-law Stacy. Yes, I still have it Stac! Who would ever throw him away just because he's missing a pearl on one of his antlers? You guys couldn't tell either!
























I put a few of my dishes to use I just have sitting in my cupboard for the most part cause' they're specia glassy type dishes I don't use very often, but I love how they help me out this time of year! My wreaths in bth my dining and living room window werea project Katie Shorma helped me out with years ago when I was on bedrest with Brady! Super cheap ladies and easy for this non-crafty girl!










Very subtle here, but that's how I like it, noty too overpowering. I don't want it to take me till March to take it all down! I mostly like Greenery and more greenery. Then it's more of a wintery feel, not just exclusively Christmas. What does your home look like at Christmas? We're all curious!


















Friday, December 12, 2008

It's Moments Like These

Keilah Grace: Mama, where's our new baby? (I was hanging over the bathtub washing her, and my tummy was eye level with her.)
Me: (after composing myself in a second) Member', Baby, mama's new baby is in heaven with Jesus now.
Keilah Grace: Oh, God's taking care of it now.
Me: Ya... He is.

Children see things clearer than we do sometimes and have a simple pure faith that is so beautiful.

Found my mini stocking all red and velvety as I was hanging the rest of our family's this week. We've always hung it, either for the newest baby such as Keilah Grace, but most of the time over the past 8 years, (6 of them to be exact) I've been pregnant, and we hang it in the baby to come's honor. Maybe this year, I'll hang it still. This time, in memory of what would've been. It's sweet to know though, that because of Christ, and the hope that HE provides, I can have peace and comfort, knowing I will meet that baby one day.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Picture Perfect?

Ya right. Nine people. 8 whiny people. Yes, it was cold. Ok, freezing, but that wind really didn't help matters. Notice Lexie's hair. I really thought about sending out the last one, It's closest to our family's most natural state. The kids not really paying attention to our bribery - "look at the camera and smile please!!!!" Some pouting, Jared looking well, I'm not sure if that's stressed or in a calm natural state... Hmmm. And me, well, at least I'm not threatening anyone in this one. Thanks again Suzanne! Our sweet and might I say brave neighbor really did try her best, and if it weren't for that wind, we might've scored in the Christmas card department. Oh well she get's an A+. Her subjects, well, we do not!





Monday, December 8, 2008

My Green Goat Birthday!

Keilah Grace turned 3 yesterday and we certainly enjoyed her unique birthday. Oh, I tried to sway her into something girly and pink, but she would not waver. She must have a green goat birthday. In case you wondering, no, there is no green character goat out there, she just loves the color green and is totally infatuated with goats. Weird and precious all at the same time. :)Here she is with "Puffy." It's hard to find stuffed goats out there, but I'm determined by Christmas time my friends! Help please! She enjoyed her day of meals picked out by herself. Supper consisted of Spaggetti, green salad, green jello, green invisible koolaid, and yep, her goat cake, complete with green ice cream. Yes, I made it, and yes, I am aware that it looks like a child did it. I have no talent in this area, but at least it tasted good. We all wore green in her honor, and I think she was as happy as can be that night complete with her best bud, "Rufie." (Ruthie) we love you Keilah Grace, and I hope you have fun at Grandma's!




















Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Canonballs, Bellyflops, and Wedgies

The kids were so excited to go swimming at the hotel when we joined Jared in Bismark for a couple of days in October. Can you tell here? We had a blast watching them muster up the courage for the HUGE waterslide that even went outside the building and tried to capture some firsts on film. Austin and Keilah Grace are fearless, this we knew and now know. Lexie and Brady conquered their waterslide fears. And as for Maddie, she'll do anything at least once, but poor thing always ends up with a wedgie. Watch out, Cannonball!!!









Caramel Bliss

I love making these apples this time of year. For some reason, we missed this tradition last year, and so we all dove in this year - literally!


Here Comes Trouble!

Need I say more?

#1 Boy.
#2 almost 2.
#3 Boy. (oh, I already said that.)