Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas 2012 - Sweet Memories, Part 1

There are so many things I want to remember about this Christmas..... Way too many to include in one blog post, but I'll start with a few of the special and fun moments leading up to Christmas.
I want to remember how excited Tucker was about Christmas.  He actually remembered last Christmas (which seriously impresses the heck out of me, especially considering I barely remember lol!).  He remembered, without any prompting, what he got from Santa (even a puzzle that I had completely forgotten he had gotten last Christmas).  He remembered his favorite ornaments for the tree.  From the time we put up our smaller tree upstairs, he asked when we were going to put up the big tree downstairs because he knew his favorite ornaments were in the boxes of ornaments for the big tree.  (Seriously, are kids this young supposed to remember stuff like that?!) 
This is his favorite ornament.  This one and an angel ornament.  He slept with both for about a week.
Anyway, he was SO excited about Christmas!  I loved his excitement!  All the questions he would ask about Baby Jesus, including some that I had a difficult time answering.  I LOVE his inquisitive heart, especially his yearning to understand more about our Savior!
I want to remember how excited Tucker was while we were decorating the real tree we always get for the basement.
He was very serious about his ornament placement.  Daddy reminded him that he could put the ornaments all over the ENTIRE tree, but he tended to focus on two or three branches.  Each time he placed one, he would say, "There!  That's so perfect!"  And he was absolutely right.  Each ornament was absolutely perfect and I didn't move a single one.
 I want to remember how good he was with Gracie, helping her to put her ornaments on the tree and making sure she only got the ones that didn't have any hooks on them.  He would tell Wes and I, "Make sure you put them high so Gracie can't reach them!"
 I want to remember how excited Gracie was too!  She was all smiles (as usual!).  And absolutely loved decorating the tree.
I want to remember how Gracie kept saying, "HO HO HO!" when she had on the Santa hat.
She thought it was hilarious!

 I want to remember how Tucker put on the Santa hat and pretended to be Santa, bringing Wes and I toys :).
 Oh, and the 'real' Santa.  Tucker LOVED seeing Santa!  He made sure to tell him exactly what he wanted for Christmas, a "blue pulling truck."
Gracie was not a Santa fan this year.
 I want to remember the day that I took Tucker and Gracie to see Santa because it was!
I want to remember Gracie's love for ribbons and all things wrapping paper.
As crazy as it is, I want to remember the moment the Baby Jesus from our Little People Nativity Set ended up in the potty.  (Hey, it's the fun times too!)  It reminds me how much Gracie carried the Baby Jesus around.  She would say, "Bay-bay!" and "Shhhh," while rocking him in her arms.

 I want to remember how much fun we had with our Elf on a Shelf, Ducky (how we arrived to that name is for another post!). 
Each morning, both Tucker and Gracie were excited to look for her.  When Tucker would wake up and come get Wes and I up, the very first thing he would say is, "Mommy, did you find Ducky yet?!"  Which Wes and I got a kick out of considering we had literally just opened our eyes lol!
Even Gracie would wake up, walk into the kitchen and say, "At?"  As soon as she found Ducky, she would blow her a kiss.  So sweet :)!

 I want to remember how Tucker wore Christmas jammies  And anytime he had to change, it was a fight.  Every.Day.
 I want to remember how excited Tucker was to play in the snow the first time (and only time thus far) that it snowed!

 I want to remember how Tucker loved Starbucks as much as his Mama did ;).
 And the fun we had with our count down to Christmas calendar. 
(Yeah, I was on the fence about this since it's more of a count down to Santa than Jesus's birthday, but we do not yet have an Advent Calendar and this helped Tucker understand when Christmas would come.)  Gracie enjoyed this too, she put the cotton balls on the hat ;).
 The fun Wes and I had dressing up for the Tacky Christmas Party we went to, and doing an old-school-prom pose lol!
 Oh my goodness do I want to remember the beautiful song the children sang at church, and how perfectly Tucker sang the words and did all the motions.  (Look for the video soon!)
I also want to remember how Tucker practiced this song so much that Gracie knows the motions as well!  I hope to catch this on video and post it.  She asks for this song to be sang all.the.time!
Making Christmas cookies with Tucker Bug!
 How excited the kids were that Ducky had left them new Christmas jammies on Christmas Eve.
 How excited they were to go to bed on Christmas Eve.  That was a first!
 Oh and how I want to remember how intently Tucker listened to Daddy read about the birth of Jesus from the bible before bed on Christmas Eve.  My favorite part was when Wes was reading about the angel telling the Shepherds that Jesus had been born.  When Wes read that they were afraid when the angel appeared, Tucker interrupted, "The angel said, 'Do not be afraid! I have great news!' and the Shepherds were not afraid anymore!"
Such sweet, sweet memories of my sweet, sweet family. :)) 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry CHRISTmas, from the Keene's

"Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." Matthew 1:23

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Gracie Girl's been sick

Just a random virus.  Her only symptom was a high fever (103+), and of course the uncomfortableness and just plain not-feeling-good that come with a fever.

Poor girl :(
Snuggles with her Silky (and lots of paci time which isn't her norm)!
 Even though she hasn't felt good, she still insisted on wearing a hair bow!
 And she still played around now and then.
Including some sink time!
We are so thankful that today she is pretty much back to her happy, silly, goofy self!
Big Brother's pretty happy his side kick is back too :)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Today was a good day.

A pancake breakfast followed by church where I got to be way silly while teaching 3-5 year olds about the birth of Jesus.
Then Wes's super delicious home made veggie soup and cornbread muffins followed by a nap for the two little people in our house.
A quick sweep of the house by Wes and I.
Then Papa and Memaw came over to play with T & G (bless their hearts!) while Wes and I spent a few hours playing Santa Claus at Toys R Us and the mall.

A good day.
Very Exhausting.
But a good day.

Flash back photo from Mother's Day 2012.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Shutterfly is so FLY

Blessed Script Christmas Card
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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Tutus & Spiderman

Gracie LOVES her birthday tutu.  She wants it on almost as frequently as she wants to put different shoes on and off.  Recently she has decided she wants bows on her head as well.
 Such a girl!
 A tutu and toothbrush!  Add a pair of snazzy shoes, and she's in heaven!
 Our boy, on the other hand, is all boy!  While Gracie's running around in her tutu and hair bows, he's fighting bad guys and running from monsters in his Spider man mask :)
(This is the only pic I have of Tucker, because unlike Gracie who immediately smiles and says, "sheese" at the sign of a camera, Tucker literally runs from it lol!)

Monday, December 3, 2012

Not Just Another Zoo Trip

It was 73 degrees here today.  In December.  I don't know what's going on with the weather, but you'll get no complaints here!  I'm just hoping we're not in for a torrential winter....

But, a sunny, perfect 73 degrees, December day, on one of my off days - I'll most definitely take it.

To celebrate, the kiddos and I went to the zoo first thing this morning.

Tucker hasn't quite gotten this whole season-changing thing down quite yet.  He knows that the leaves turn colors in the fall and now that the leaves have mostly fallen off the trees and there's talk of Christmas, he keeps asking if it's winter yet.  We talk about how it's SO close to winter and that when winter comes it's going to be COLD, but I don't think he quite believe us.  When I told him we would be going to the zoo today because it was going to be BEAUTIFUL and we wouldn't have many more zoo days left, he informed me that, "No, we are actually going to stay home today.  I get to pick and I want to stay home."  Eventually I was able to convince him that we really did need to do something outside so he said he would go to the park.  (Work with me here, Buddy!)  Finally, he conceded to going to the zoo!  Man, you would have thought I was trying to convince him to go to the dentist!  (Which is a WHOLE other post lol!)

The thing with my boy is not that he doesn't want to be outside all the time, he does.  He just does not EVER want to "get ready".  He doesn't want to get dressed, brush his teeth, fix his hair, nothing.  He also does not like it when it takes a long time to get somewhere.  I'll ask him if he wants to do something and before he responds, he will ask, "Can I wear my jammies?" or "Will it take a long time to get there?"  He knows the zoo isn't just around the corner.

Of course, once we "FINALLY" arrived at the zoo after our all of 30 minute drive, Tucker was very happy he agreed that it was a good zoo day.  Over the summer we went to the zoo a LOT, at least once a week and sometimes even twice.  There was even one week we went 3 times!  We've been pretty busy the past couple months so we've only managed to go a few times this fall.  Man, there's such a difference going in 90+ degree weather and going in barelyn70 degree late fall weather! 

Typically, we are zipping through the zoo making it as far as we can before we start flirting with nap time.  Today, the weather was perfect, the kids were perfect, we were almost the only ones there, the animals were playful.  We took our time.  I let the kids look at animals as long as they wanted to, play on the play ground as long as they wanted to, hang out in the trucks. We were on their time and I intentionally enjoyed every minute of it.  We skipped nap and stayed right up to closing.  We saw the Mommy Giraffe play with her baby, the elephants have a water fight, the lions were walking around and roaring (they're usually sleeping!), we caught the sea lion performance with the trainers, the polar bear was playing with his ball and doing 'cannon balls' in the water, the tiger was playing with his ball in the water (I thought tigers didn't like water!), we cheered on the penguins racing each other, ran around in the gorilla area, rode the carousel twice, we even made time for the reptiles (an area of the zoo I usually skip because it's at the end). 

By the end, we were all wore out, in a good way!  :)

I managed to snap a few pictures of our day:

Gracie was sleeping when we arrived and continued sleeping until we got to the elephants.
Tucker was eating a huge carrot that he brought from home.  At every animal he would say, "I think he wants my carrot." and "What do you think the giraffe/rhino/warthog/elephant is saying about my carrot?"  lol!
 They both ate our packed lunch so good that they were allowed an after lunch treat :).
I think the sugar boost totally helped keep them going through nap time!
 Watching the tiger below play in the water
 I LOVE these picture of Tucker driving his match car on the glass of the polar bear's tank.
He was watching the polar bear do "cannon balls" in the water and swim out while I nursed Gracie.
Taking a break :)
 Tucker was amazed at the skeletons and this African Elephant skull.  He's really into skeletons right now.  I don't know where that comes from lol!
 Gracie getting close with the Orangutan.  She would put her hand on the glass and then the orangutan would put his hand up as well. She thought it was hilarious!
 Tucker thought Gracie was a little scared so he was letting her know he was there.
Such a sweet big brother!

Thank you for the beautiful day, Lord!
And, mostly thank you for my lovies and for opportunities to just play with them and take in all the goodness that comes with being their Mommy!