Saturday, December 31, 2016

2016 Slideshow

A year full of small changes and big changes.
We embraced it all (and I tried to document as much as I could). 
Every year I put these slideshows together and it feels like the year passed quicker than the previous. I always feel sadness and almost desperation that time slips by so quickly...but also an overwhelming feeling of gratitude and love for the joy that all those small moments bring. I guess it is lucky that I always want to do it over again. In fact, I'd love to jump back in each of those photos to feel the
good vibes of 2016.

And now, we head into 2017 with excitement, ready to go with the flow of everything it has to offer! 

Christmas at the Brintons

The day after Christmas we had our second round! Jeff and Emily hosted a lovely day at their house with us, Grandpa and DeeDee and Emily's mom Ellen. It was just perfect! Filled with good food, fun chatter (Grandpa and DeeDee had returned from a month long trip to Australia and New Zealand just the day before!), laughter, and of course present opening!!

The minute we got there, Declan was sitting right next to Grandpa, feeling the top of his head and cuddling with him for quite a while. The kid is so into anything soft. Whenever he rubs my dads head it absolutely cracks me up and I have the thought, "make a wish"! ☺
 Emily and Reesie cuddles
 It wasn't long before we tore into the gifts!

 My brother made this awesome sign for Dad and Carie!
 Rudi cuddles
 Enjoying their bunt cake
 I don't know who is more entertained - the person using the device or the people watching. ☺
 And a family picture to end the day!! ♥
Thank you so much Jeff and Emily for hosting such a perfect Christmas #2!! 

Friday, December 30, 2016

Christmas Afternoon

Following Christmas morning, we spent a wonderful, relaxing afternoon at Rick and Mary's. The excitement and happiness of the day continued into the evening as the cousins played and the adults enjoyed one another's company. It was just perfect!

 The two littlest trying to blow up balloons

 Aren't they too young to be hanging at the bar?

 This crew snuck upstairs to play video games

 And, more present opening!!
 She was so excited that her present was so big!!

And that finishes up a spectacular Christmas afternoon!!!

Christmas Morning

Christmas morning. A blur of wrapping paper, laughter, sugar, and screams of delight. Every year I try to saver every single moment of it, enjoy it and make it last as long as possible. And after it's all over all I can remember are little snippets that stick out in my head. Until I go back and look at the pictures and am forever thankful of the memories and emotions they trigger. Each year seems to be better than the last. 
After the little mishap we had last year with the kids running down before Adam and I were even awake and us missing their reactions of new bikes, we made damn sure that didn't happen again. We had a few talks with them, reminded them multiple times, and then had Duncan as the ultimate enforcer with his peppermint - do not cross this line!!!
Even with all of that, Nate still tried to sneak down. ☺
Looking longingly at the presents awaiting her downstairs. 

It's like they're in Christmas prison. ☺

Finally, we allowed them downstairs!

Stalkings and Santa gifts

The year he was obsessed with Dori.

A healthy breakfast of pez and chocolate Santas.

Moving onto the gifts under the tree. Some of the photos I already posted under the sibling gift blog post, but they are part of Christmas, so I am posting them here too. 

I picked up this Minecraft collector set at Costco, on a whim, not thinking much of it. It ended up being one of his very favorite presents. 

Chargers and Star Wars - it's how we roll.

Santa brought him a new basketball because he joined a team that starts at the end of January. 

Shopkins organizer
Nathan was freaking out about Declan's Star Wars ship

Joann sent Lexi one of those Fur Real friends - a fire breathing Dragon - the kids got a lot of laughs from this little guy

I can hear his sound effects just by looking at this photo!
All month the kids were talking about our Christmas morning monkey bread. They could not wait! 

After a breakfast break, we were back at it! 

"My star wars" he kept saying
caught this little one sneaking more monkey bread!
He really wanted this Darth Vader mug
Th esnow tiger from Joann - one of her favorite gifts

Such a fantastic morning!!

We let the kids play awhile with their gifts ...

We bought Nathan this truck that can pull up to 200 pounds. We put it to the test! 

After a couple of hours, we surprised them with Kindle Fires!

Declan fell back in complete relief. I know he was really hoping for one! 

And that's a Christmas morning wrap! Best Christmas ever. 

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