Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Merry Christmas...

...and a happy New Year to you all!

 I can hardly believe its been two months since my last post. Nor can I believe Christmas has come and gone and it is already the first day of 2013! Our life has been very busy and full of joy, fun and a bit of chaos this holiday season.  We had a wonderful Christmas celebrating the joy of Christ and the wishes of little children in our household came true.  We are very fortunate to be given another year, and though change seems to be on the horizon, my prayers are that we can embrace it with all our hearts and grow a little closer to who we were meant to be and fulfill our purpose on this earth.

So much has happened and changed since my last post.  A few hardships and many blessings have come our way. I intended to share them but time has been lacking.  Time for blogging anyway. There has been time for many other things, like reading stories in our jammies and baking cookies for Santa.  We have had time to enjoy Christmas lights and play in the snow.  We have had time for very important things, but less time for sharing them.  So lets catch up a little, shall we? 

Kieran turned two in November. Oh, and is he ever two.  With each two-year-old, more meaning is given to the phrase, "terrible two" and yet I try to remember that he is equally a wonderful two.  He loves cars and candy, he loves being outside, swinging and sliding and he has a very developed an ability to find some kind of trouble to get into no matter what time of day and where he is.


 In November my Mom treated us to a wonderful production of "Beauty and The Beast" put on by the Christian Youth Theatre in Spotsylvania. I highly recommend any of their plays, and we all thoroughly enjoyed their interpretation of Anastasia's favorite Princess Story. We also had the pleasure of meeting Belle herself (who we were thrilled to find out is also Home schooled!).  And do you notice anything different about Anastasia?:
 My brave little, almost-6-year-old got her ears pierced.  She just decided she wanted to do it, and the next day we did it! She hardly cried and is very proud that she was so brave, and has shiny little stars in her ears now!  Suddenly she looks so grown up! Especially when she forgoes a frilly dress for jeans and a pretty shirt.  Whatever happened to the tiny baby I held in my arms over 5 years ago?  Its amazing how time flies... and turns babies into young ladies so quickly.

 Do you believe in Santa?  Our household does.  This year the girls each wished for an American Girl Doll from Santa. Anastasia changed her mind about 4 times and "Santa" ended up having to make an emergency run to the American Girl store in Tyson's to make an exchange.  So much for planning ahead! Of course, she and Caroline are inseparable now, and Isabel received my Felicity doll from my childhood which the elves managed to clean up and make brand new for her! Four is a bit too young for an American Girl doll in my opinion, but I think we made a good compromise that makes all things fair in our household. 
 St. Nicholas paid us a visit one night. He filled our shoes with candy and goodies! The kids were lucky daddy was in charge of the St. Nicholas duties as he came back from the store with full size candy bars. Oh. My. 
 We also spent a day in Colonial Williamsburg, followed by an evening at Busch Gardens.  We finished reading all six Felicity books and the girls were enamoured by the town that she once lived in.  They kept hoping to see Felicity but we didn't this time!  We did see plenty of horses and old time shops. 
 And we tried out the stocks!  This is where very bad children have to stay.
 Busch Gardens was decorated for Christmas with millions of lights, magic and even some real-live penguins. Unfortunately though the weather was perfect, it was so unbearably crowded! By the end of the night things cleared out and we enjoyed the beautiful array of lights. My favorite part is pictured above, you can't see it but it was snowing! It was truly magical.
 Anastasia was a fairy at her ballet "friends and family" performance.  She loves putting on "shows" at home and on stage.  I wonder what the future holds for this talented little star of mine.  We enjoyed burgers and ice cream afterwards at our local burger spot, Spelunkers.
 And some of the biggest new yet, is that I got a job! I am working at our local Starbucks a few days a week. It is my first job in almost 6 years!  Things have been a little tight around here, so having a little extra income was a bit of a necessity. It has been really fun and helped my extroverted side cope with the housework and isolation of being a stay-at-home mom.  I am not sure how permanent this is, but for now it is working really well for our family and funding our addiction to good coffee. :)
 The kids have actually been more well behaved and more independent.  I think not having me around all the time to ask for things 500 times a day and having a less sympathetic parent at home working is a healthy change for them too. I feel very fortunate to have been able to get the one job I wanted most in our area!
 And we had a white Christmas! It was so magical to wake up Christmas Morning to a winter wonderland! It is such a treat in Virginia! 
We had a very magical Christmas morning, followed by an evening with my parents and my brother and his girlfriend.  Its always special to be with family for Christmas!  The girls were so happy to be with their Uncle, and grandparents and were very in awe of all their new treasures.  Hopefully you experienced the true meaning of Christmas... the magic of a tiny baby, a bundle of love, sent to save the world.  Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!