Sunday, December 4, 2011

Oh, Christmas Tree! Oh, Christmas Tree!!

Well, here she is!!! Our lovely Christmas tree!!
I had many helpers today, as you can see. This year I outsmarted the bunch and bought shatterproof decorations. The broom and dust pan had a remarkably smaller role in assembly this season because of said purchase.

Annelise was having the time of her life congratulating the boys on ornaments well hung and suggesting the next one's placement. She was so motherly and sweet that I just couldn't bring myself to stop her. Luckily for her, the boy's were strung out on too much warm cider and weren't thinking clearly to stop her themselves. It's safe to say she had a stellar time!

Bodie has really started to enoy things that a year ago wouldn't have interested him at all. Last year he hung a few special ornaments but was really more into the cider. This year, he was practically trying to steal my position and be the ring leader. His crafty side was certainly brought out by preschool and as an artist myself, I am loving it!

Can you OD on cider? If so, Brayton may have done just that. He spilled no less than 4 cups and drank far more. The floor may never be the same.

This is how it all started. . . . . Annelise not only dressed up to go get the tree, she had me curl her hair and all. We all had a great time today putting up the tree and decorations. I, for one, am just glad that it's done! This is the earliest for our family yet so I am awfully proud!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Here's what been happening down on the farm!

Well, I have without a doubt fallen behind on blogging. Somewhere between morning and night, it just doesn't get done as often as I should. So, brace yourself for the rediculously large post in an attempt at getting family and friends up to speed!The past month has been filled with so many fun activites! We usually head to the pumpkin patches as many times as we can in a season and this year was a first to go with our preschool class. It was such fun to see them interact with new friends and Anna loved staying close to Miss Erin, her teacher.
Bodie didn't miss a chance to be with his best friend, Andrew. (above)

That's a lot of 4 year old's on one hill!

As you can tell, the weather has been great all fall! Mother Nature was so sweet to bring us a nice warm fall and we hope her kind gestures continue throughout the winter but we aren't counting on it. The children were all so excited to leave with a little pumpkin. The owner's of this pumpkin patch lost their home in the floods this year and yet they still were as generous as ever. The Human Spirit really is amazing!

We can now add "Gingerbread Spooky Houses" to our list of fun fall activities as well! However, these were MESSY so I don't know if this task is for anyone who likes a clean home. :)

This year, my Dad graciously bought the boy's bunkbeds! They were both ready to get out of the crib and although the fit is tight, it sure is nice for everyone to have their own big bed now. We were so worried about only having two bedrooms when we moved here but the reality is that you make it work. I actually love that they are all together. One of the biggest hopes I have for my children is that they are always the best of friends and I hope this is one of their fondest memories one day. We sure have a lot of fun in the small room!

As you can see, Bodie was more excited than ANYONE! He was also the most hesitant to move to the big bed. Sometimes they just need a gentle push. (Or Grandpa's visit and a new bed!)

Another new addition is the swingset! Grandpa spoiled the children for Christmas this year and surprised us all with a new swingset for the trio! While Daddy has been working hard, MOMMY, yes MOMMY put almost 100% of this together! It wasn't easy but I am pretty proud of myself if I must say so! There are also cute gables on it now and a chimney. It's been a big hit and we are so happy to have it!

Halloween brought costumes. . . . . enough said! Brayton doesn't discriminate between dragons and ladybugs!

Fall brought a lot of motorcycle riding as well.

The children have been learning about the importance of farming this harvest season. So this year, we made turkey, leaf, and pumpkin shaped cookies to take to the farmer's in appreciation of their hard work. At home, we are trying to help the children understand that food doesn't just show up at the store. They are very interested in the whole process and I really love how they are beginning to see what a hard job it really is.

Bodie making his spooky house! He has become quite the artist this year!


What's more adorable than a bunch of small children singing spooky Halloween songs? Nothing, I dare say!

Miss Amanda, the teacher's assistant, was a dear and let Bodie paint her face. These teacher's really are amazing with so many small children and every time I help in the classroom, I am so thankful for their work!

Just holding hands. :) Lately, Brayton has said he "needs" Anna a lot. He really loves her and she loves doting on him. It's nice to be reminded of these moments when the times come that they are screaming at each other.

No activity is complete without Daddy near. He makes everything more exciting!

Lining up in the classrooom before the class program.

It was as sweet as they all look!

Fall brings a lot of baking around here, for some reason! So here we are, risking our lives, eating raw cookie dough!

A new favorite activity is jumping from the highest step and seeing who can get the highest! A good, heart-pounding time!

Annelise and I had a special day together with my cousin Brandy and two of her daughter's when we went to Disney Live, A Princess Story. This past month we have been to Bottineau twice for both Kylie and Logyn's birthday and they have been here once. It's been fun to see everyone so many times in the last month and we all miss them when we aren't together.

In the last month, we have also spent Thanksgiving with great friends and my brother, Wade, has temporarily moved in with us. The children really enjoy having him here and Daddy loves all the extra help around here. We have ice-skated for the first time at Kylie's birthday party and we also went to our first Saturday Matinee with the Simpson clan in Bottinuea. So many things I didn't get pictures of but I hope December brings back out my camera!

On a little side note, as many of you know, the town of Minot, ND was devestated by flood waters this spring and summer and thousands were left with no home and everything they owned in ruins. We have decided to adopt a family this year for Christmas and with the help of friends, we are hoping to make this a Merry Christmas for them. They are a family who had their home washed away and now live in a small FEMA trailer. They have a 6 year old boy who was born with no immune system and needs constant medical help, and their daughter, 9, will be headed to MN for her second brain surgery in 6 weeks on the 16th. A genuinely kind family that needs help. If you, or anyone you know, is interested in donating to this family, please feel free to leave me a message and I will make sure to contact you asap! So far, we have raised $1175.00 and hope to add to that so they might have a few less worries this month.

We hope that everyone has a happy, healthy holiday season filled with love, peace, and laughter! Love from us!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A Beautiful night on the Missouri River!

The current owner of the home we rent, and a dear friend, invited us out for a stroll on the Missouri river a few weeks ago. It was every bit as beautiful as it looks and so was the company!
The children all adore Tedi!! She comes from a large family and has three amazing children of her own as well as a very sweet husband. We feel so blessed to have found them and even more fortunate that they let us invade their home.

The river has changed so much since the flooding this year but it remains as stunning as it was before. The floods left pristine sand bars and cleaned the entire shore leaving soft, velvety sand to play in. It also left devestation but it's nice to be able to appreciate the good that came of the flooding. The silver lining, if you will.

It was a great evening for sure and one the children won't soon forget.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Us. . .

Sweetest Girl on Earth!

Pumpkin' Patch Rediculousness!

You knew it was coming! I cannot, cannot help myself when it comes to the Harvest times festivities. I am a sucker for them all!!!! I guess it doesn't matter where we live, I manage to find every pumpkin patch known to man and then we frequent it like a bad habit!

Mazes keep is running!
Bodie being so disapointed that you had to be 6 years old to ride the zip lines. You know, 6 is his favorite number of all time so that will certainly be a magical year when it finally get's here!

"Come on ride the train. . . .and ride it!" I had to say that!

The corn box!

This year, the owner's of Papa's Pumpkin Patch were flooded out. Their home was destroyed and a lot of the grounds that host the Patch every year. This was it's temporary location but I thought they did an AMAZING job! The combine and trains all made it to the new spot so the children could see and play on something familiar. It's a family run venue and they make everyone feel like a relative.

Simple fun.

Bodie and his buddy Truett having a great time!

Annelise doesn't need the action, just a pretty little pumpkin house will do just fine!

We have already visited a few times but our first trip we went with Truett and Rocco! They have proven to be a lot of fun and have a great family that we adore. Makes it all even better!