"While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about."

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Memories 2008

We had a great Christmas this year and we have tons of memories that will last forever.

Olivia Grace


We started at Granny Wheeler's Christmas Eve around lunch. I was surprised because Carter was very interested in the presents, wrapping, and bows. I thought he would be too young this year. Granny wasn't having the best day but every so often we would see a glimmer of "granny". Carter would start fussing and she would say, "give him to me" which is exactly what she would say if she didn't have Alzheimer's. Craig asked her if she remembered me asking her to scratch my arm or my back every night. She said, "yes" and immediately started rubbing my arm. I am not sure how much longer we will have with granny because she is always talking about "going home" (to be with the Lord of course) so I am very grateful for the time that the Lord is allowing us to have with her. Before she got sick, she prayed as hard, probably harder, than I did for OG. Before she got really sick, she used to say, "now that you have OG, all you need now is a little boy." I have no doubt that she prayed for Carter as well. I thank the Lord daily that she is here, even if not in perfect mind, to see the two miracles that she prayed so hard for and to see that I am that momma that I always wanted to be.

OG helping Carter open his presents.

Kerri, Cody, Brandon and OG

Kerri and Carter

We went to Nana's that night but I forgot my camera. Oops! She had great spinach dip like always but Carter insisted on eating his cereal and peas first. He also loved the bows and tissue paper at Nana's house. I think Nana and Papa actually missed Carter just a bit. They normally see him everyday because they are helping us out until we find daycare. Since school had been out, they had not seen him. He smiled as soon as they started talking to him so he obviously missed them a little as well.

Then it was time for Santa. I love, love Santa coming. I could work on it for hours - making things just perfect. But seeing the kids faces on Christmas morning is even better!

OG's first look at what Santa brought.

OG's Pile
Carter's Pile

His favorite was the cheap barking puppy. He noticed it first.

After enjoying what Santa brought, we went back to Nana's for lunch. It was yummy!!

Opening presents at Mammy's and Pappy's is our last thing to do on Christmas day. I remember when OG was small; she would be so tired by the time we got to Craig's parents' house that she would hardly want to open presents. Now that she is older, it is great because it really stretches out the Christmas fun! We all got so much we could hardly fit it into the car.

Pappy and OG - Two Peas in a Pod!

Mammy, Carter and OG

My two men!

My family is so blessed and the Lord continues to bless us everyday! I am grateful for the real reason for Christmas - Jesus!!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Crafts

Olivia Grace was a sick little girl over the weekend. I don't think she has been that sick since she was about 2 years old. She woke up today feeling much better and begging to do a Christmas craft. I am not really sure where she gets the "craftiness" from because Craig and I sure aren't the crafty type. I did scrapbook when she was little but I don't do that much anymore. She loves making crafts and is always trying to come up with a craft to complete. When she woke up this morning feeling so much better, I couldn't tell her no when she ask to make something. I thought about the reindeer craft that I had made with my students for years. It is easy and she could complete most of it by herself. As we were working, she asked Carter if he would like to make a reindeer. So we decided to include him in the fun. Holding him still to trace his foot and hand wasn't very easy but it was so worth it. His ornament turned out so tiny and absolutely precious!! With the exception of mine, these are priceless memories that I plan to keep for years.

Monday, December 15, 2008

All I Have Ever Wanted

I absolutely love Christmas! I love the lights, the wrapping paper, the feeling you get from giving, the family gatherings, the excitement of children and of course the "real" reason for Christmas - Jesus! I was about 10 weeks pregnant last year during Christmas. For those that are unfamiliar with the beginnings of my pregnancies, they can be rough. I had severe morning sickness with Carter and didn't get any medicine for it until well after Christmas. Needless to say, last year was not a very good Christmas for us. I have been getting excited for Christmas this year for months. However, with the economy the way it is right now, Craig found out that his hours were going to be cut in January. That has really put a damper on things because we are trying to prepare for the significant pay cut to come. I was trying to finish up the decorating of "my" tree yesterday while Carter was asleep and OG and Craig were still in Andrews. As I was decorating, I was thinking and praying. I love, love, love buying and sitting out Santa on Christmas Eve. I also love, love, love to buy clothes for my children. As I was stringing the lights, I was thinking about how these two things have changed quite a bit this year due to our trying to save and get everything caught up before the new year. I realized that my family's "cup runneth over" even without all the toys on Christmas morning and even without that perfectly smocked dress or jon jon. I am really not as materialistic as this may sound. I just enjoy spoiling my little ones. But I realized that they are still spoiled because the Lord has always provided exactly what we need just in time and I know He will continue. I was reading a friend's blog tonight that really touched me. She has a little girl that is right around Carter's age. She had heard a song on the radio that said "all I want for Christmas is a family". She went on to discuss how she had been wanting someone to call her own, someone to tuck in, someone to call her mom and how the Lord had answered those prayers by giving her a new little girl. This really hit home for me because I remember having those exact same "wants". We prayed for 3 years for Olivia Grace and went through quite a bit of tests and medicine before the Lord answered our prayers. She only wrote maybe a paragraph and I was crying uncontrollably by those few sentences. So while I may not have a living room full of toys from Santa or a smocked outfit for each Sunday before Christmas, I do have a Savior that answers prayers and always provides. A perfect example of His work is that I have what I have always wanted for Christmas - A FAMILY!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Another First

Olivia Grace is asleep so I will have to tell her about Carter's new "first" tomorrow so that she can add it to her list. As you all know, Carter had a very rough start and now he stays with his Pappy and Nana so he is a bit spoiled to say the least. With Olivia Grace, I followed all the "rules" with feeding, sleeping, tummy time, etc. However, it is been a little different with Carter. Everyone tried to tell me that the second is very different. But knowing me and how paranoid I am about things, I really didn't think it would be that much of a change from the first. Oh, but it is!! Carter got cereal about a week before he was 4 months (the "official" time to start), he started on fruit about a week ago (the "official" time to start that is 5-6 months), and he is rocked to sleep for every nap and at every bedtime. I know, you should lay them down and let them learn to sooth themselves. I have read all the books, too. But when your baby cries for hours on end like he did for those few months, you will do whatever you can to just get them to sleep. He is doing sooo much better but we continue to rock him to sleep because he is used to that now and I can't really imagine him "soothing himself". Well...I am now the proud mother of a "self soother"!!! He played on the couch right by himself for about an hour while I looked for some deals on holiday clothes on ebay. I could tell he was sleepy because he was rubbing his eyes, but he was playing so I allowed him to continue. When I looked over at him, he had rolled to his side and was closing his eyes. I was so proud, I could hardly stand it. So while you might think this is a silly first to blog about, I am the proudest mom alive right now!!