Saturday, December 29, 2012

Lunch and Alligators. A perfect outing for boys.

I liked this Cuban place, I just had sides b/c I couldn't just pick two 
(instead of getting the meat and two sides). 
 We had purchased a groupon for getting in to the Alligator Attraction, feeding them, and holding them.
 They were supposed to tease the gators with the food to make them work for it.

Tyler claps his hand down onto his other one and says "[s]nap" for alligator.

12/29/12 We went back with our cousins! Isaac didn't feel the need to get in the picture. Oh well, next year!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A Festivas Miracle (meet Our Elf on the Shelf)

I explained this a little in the Festivus post. But we ended up with this Elf. The kids named him Elfie then "Jingle Buddy."
This was Dylan's first encounter with Jingle Buddy.
He was putting the next part of the nativity advent up for us.

He did some other things like TP the Christmas tree and write mustaches and writing all over a big collage frame. I don't think I have pictures of those. Some days he just moved from shelf to shelf.

The kids love to pretend, so it's fun. I told him it's not real, but like Santa, they insist he is.

Wise Men Still Seek Him

It seems like this is this Christmas season's theme. 
I went to my friend Rachel's girly Christmas party and opened this gift. 
 Then it got stolen from me.
Then I opened another gift of lotions which got stolen so I could thankfully steal back my Wise Men gift!

On the first Sunday of the month, our Home Teacher came and offered a little Christmas message from the president of our church and from the scriptures. Here's an excerpt from this month's Ensign:

In our day the spirit of giving gifts plays a large role in commemorating the Christmas season. I wonder if we might profit by asking ourselves, What gifts would the Lord have me give to Him or to others at this precious season of the year?
May I suggest that our Heavenly Father would want each of us to render to Him and to His Son the gift of obedience. I also feel that He would ask us to give of ourselves and not be selfish or greedy or quarrelsome, as His precious Son suggests in the Book of Mormon:
“Verily, verily I say unto you, he that hath the spirit of contention is not of me, but is of the devil, who … stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger, one with another.
“Behold, this is not my doctrine, to stir up the hearts of men with anger, one against another; but this is my doctrine, that such things should be done away” (3 Nephi 11:29–30).

Then he had Dylan and Isaac look and find 5 things in this picture that are examples of serving others. 
They show how the kids are giving gifts to Jesus. 

I said it was appropriate since our Christmas card was from our Three Wise Men too.
A couple of days before the party, I saw a nativity on a friend's Facebook timeline as their header. I loved it and asked where she got it. It was from the's Facebook page, she informed me. So I looked and found this one of just the wise men and used it as my timeline cover.
Recently, I saw this video as posted on another blog. I've seen it before, but it's appropriate and explains a tiny bit more the phrase that Wise Men Still Seek Him.

Today, a friend, Lori Emery, posted this about the star that the Wise Men followed. 
"The same God that placed that star in a precise orbit millennia before it appeared over Bethlehem in celebration of the birth of the Babe has given at least equal attention to placement of each of us in precise human orbits so that we may, if we will, illuminate the landscape of our individual lives, so that our light may not only lead others but warm them as well."--Elder Neal A. Maxwell
Isn't that amazing?! I think so. We're all so important. 

We read in the scriptures that Jesus was about 2yrs old or more when the Wise Men found him. It was good reading Jesus stories each night by candle light. 
It's good to have little ways to keep the real meaning of Christmas on the tops of our minds this season and I'm SO blessed that so many little ways fell into my lap that helped me and my kids focus on the three wise men of old. I have a testimony that my Heavenly Father wants us all to learn, to gain wisdom, to give gifts by serving others, and that He is always sending us significant messages to help us get back to Him. He has a plan, and if we pay attention, we can learn and be wise too. 
Verse 12 is the sweet one I chose to highlight one night because I think of my baby Tyler and how I give him his swaddling [favorite] blanket all the time. It doesn't have to do with wise men except that even Jesus started out as a tiny baby who depended on his mommy for everything. Oh, that reminds me of another little gem from this month. Last Sunday, my favorite song in our church service's program was "Mary Did You Know" performed as a duet with my friend Emily Pavone and her dad. (Here's a link to a video w/ Ceelo singing it.) Tyler, sitting on my lap, was sitting staring. So was everybody else, no wiggles while they sang. I need to raise my babies to be righteous strong wise men too. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Day 2012

 new blankies!!
 A HUGE tub of legos from Uncle Martin and Aunt Katy!
 Kat got the boys gifts, but look what she got ME!!! The previous year's blog book!!

 He's signing "airplane"

 Thank you Aunt Lacey, for their matching Christmas Morning PJs!
 Isaac used his Snoopy Snowcone Machine
 I made some snow in my NINJA blender, but they preferred cranking the snow.
 Tyler got some snow w/o flavor. (Dressed appropriately in how "snow" outfit of course.)
 This is the face letting all around know he's frustrated. We hear his "eeeeeeeh" all too much.
 I got him a better cup. He is into feeding himself w/ a spoon/fork. He's actually really good at it.

 We had to pry Isaac away from his snoopy machine to go to the Crews' house.

 At my mom's, Don had us watch a church Christmas movie.
 Then we opened presents! I had the hardest time figuring out what to put on the top of his ping pong score board. I decided that simple was okay.
 They got the kids remote control cars. I think every kid should get one on Christmas morning, so fun!
 Then we went to the beach for our traditional sandy snow man. It wasn't really that cold, but the water, sand, and wind were cool.

 Plans A and B failed.

 I almost went and made a tiny one in the sand, but we made due.
 At least the props were good!

 Isaac chopped/hammered his mixed nuts from his stocking all by himself. So I had him clean up the mess all by himself too. I made a Christmas colors smoothie since we've been eating so much junk.

 Look at my new nativity scene!!! I LOVE it. I wanted to buy it but Steven said no. Little did I know, he sent the link to my mom who bought it for me!