Christmas-eve Eve

David & I are officially off for Christmas. Yea!! David was off today and I only worked for a few hours. We finished up our shopping and wrapping which left us free to really enjoy some family fun tonight. The boys received a Gingerbread House kit from Aunt Jane last weekend, so after dinner we set out to become engineers and exterior designers. The boys did a great job decorating...all 3 of them and I had the job of putting it all together. Take a look at how it turned out.

After we took photos of the house, I took advantage of their willingness to pose and put them in front of the tree...especially now that it has presents underneath!!

Brotherly love!! (Not like the mention in the previous post)

After we had our mini-photo session, we headed out to Loy Lake Park to drive through the Christmas light display. I think we all agreed that our favorite display this year is the one where Santa is in a boat fishing. It's set up on the Lake! We enjoyed Christmas music (thanks XM!) and laughed at Preston's pure joy at seeing each display. We had the boys bring money from their banks to give as a donation at the end of the display. They're never too young to learn the lesson of giving to others.



David & I have been laughing our heads off at one of Preston's recent nuggets of comedic gold! While throwing a big, fat fit after we told him to go over and apologize to his big brother he comes up with this...

"I don't have a brother! I have a sister and she's mean!"

Where do they come up with this stuff???


Partying Around the World

Let the madness begin! Peyton is officially out of school for Christmas. Instead of a traditional Christmas party, this year the teachers decided to incorporate their recent lesson of learning about different countries. They've been studying China, Italy, Mexico and Ireland. On Thursday, each child took their "passport" and as a class went to each of the four second grade classrooms for a snack from that country and a craft. Peyton's class was Ireland. I was in charge of teaching the kids about the craft that Ms. Albert selected. It was supposed to be a mobile that looked like a rainbow with hanging shamrocks, but we quickly learned that we didn't have enough time to complete it when the first class came through. They ended up just glueing the shamrocks to the rainbow and it was still very cute!! It was also a lesson in ROY-G-BIV. Remember learning that?!?

For their snack they had something called Champ which was basically just mashed potatoes with scallions. One mom made soda bread and another made Rice Crispie treats, not really Irish but of course the kids LOVED them. :)

The other classrooms had food donated by local restaurants. (Guess we don't have an Irish one in Texoma!) In Mexico they had chips & salsa from La Mesa, in Italy they had spaghetti from Olive Garden and in China they had fried rice. La Mesa even sent a gift certificate that could be the prize for a drawing and you'll never guess who one.........

The Big Winner!!

Ms. Albert & her class (notice who is STILL holding up his prize!!)



Hey, I could win a $200 GC to Target! Just check out this cool bloggy tool from TheBlogFrog.com.


"Helping" out friends at Christmas

This summer Dave and I decided that although we've loved the SS class that we've been part of since we joined The Park (7 years ago!), we figured it was probably time to leave the 20's class and move on to one that was a little more (ahem!) age appropriate. Boy, did we ever underestimate what we were getting ourselves into! Tonight was our SS Christmas party. It was held at our friend's Sylvia & Todd's house and was a very nice gathering. We had dinner catered by Devolli's (yum!) and then a fairly friendly ornament exchange. Oh, but that's not all that happened...at some point after all the gifts had been opened and exchanged, the talk turned to how much we missed our friends Vicki & Kyle.

You see the Anderson's were in the car with their boys headed to Tennessee to celebrate an early Christmas with some of Kyle's family. Someone mentioned that Vicki hadn't decorated for Christmas this year which led us to the decision to "break" into their home and "help" them with that task! Poor trusting Vicki & Kyle...too many people in the room knew their garage door code, so getting in was a piece of cake. Now, how did we decorate? Pretty shiny ornaments? A fragrant holly wreath? Oh no, it was a full-on Tacky Christmas!

Believe it or not Chris & Gina had an extra Christmas tree in the back of their truck (??) so we set it up and decorated it with napkins from our party, pine cones freshly fallen from S & T's yard, oversized red bows and one of those "classic" garland-rimmed stars with blinking lights for the top. Larry & Leslie couldn't resist a trip to Wal-Mart for a "few" lights for outside. We hung those suckers everywhere!! There were plastic candy canes hanging in trees outside and every imaginable type of light was thrown over bushes and shrubs. With all the commotion that we caused, I CANNOT believe that we didn't get a visit from the local authorities called to the scene by neighbors wondering what a bunch of 30-40 year old adults and a gaggle of kids were doing in the yard of a family that was gone for the weekend. (You better believe we involved the kids, we couldn't leave them at the church all night!!)

The Anderson family is due back in town Sunday night. Someone is going to go plug in the lights before dark, so that they can truly experience the love of their friends. Crazy Baptists. Good times.

The instigator at the scene

Chris & Mary Jo trying to figure out all the lights

Hanging the candy canes in the trees

Putting up a shiny wreath on the front door.

Check out the bow on that tree!

Leslie, Vicki G, and Kaylie stringing lights inside

Attack of the Candy Cane

Outside View

The Decorating Team


Merry Christmas from the Reed Family

Here's our Christmas card for this year. Thanks for the cute design, Sara! I was so proud of myself that I got one done this year. Last year, the time just totally got away from me and I never sent out anything. And yes, you'll notice that it's the same family photo that was taken during Baylor Homecoming that I use everywhere (posted here on our blog and as my FB profile photo). But seriously it was the only decent pic of the four of us ALL year long, until the photo below from 12.6 ..but by then these were done. What's a girl to do?


Tis the season...

We continued the party fest today! This morning was our church's annual Bethlehem Breakfast for the preschoolers. The kids get to have their photo taken with Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus. Each year a couple in our church that has had a new baby play the roles. Since this year's family already had a "big brother", there was a shepherd boy in each pic too! I cannot believe I didn't snap a pic myself, but I'm looking forward to getting the version from Ms. Barbie at church. I was excited because both boys were in the posing mood!!

Today was Peyton's first basketball game of the season. The Rockets played really well, but we came up short with a 10-9 loss. Big P did a great job in his role as point guard. Once again, no pics. I was too busy cheering!!

Finally, we went to the Rawls family's annual Christmas party. It's held at the home of one of my dearest, life-long friends parent's house. Tammie lives near Tyler now and has a precious little boy named Dylan who is her little twin. Tammie's parents go all out for this event. Santa Clause even makes an appearance each year. They are so in-the-know to be able to get the big guy to come by during this busy time of year! I DID get pics from this...enjoy!

Peyton-7 (8 is January!)
Here is Santa's helper Imogene reading
the kids Santa's Favorite Story.
She sure strikes a resemblance
to someone we know!!
Precious friend Tammie & Jenn
Jennifer & Monica-another sweet friend from growing up

Peyton with Santa

Preston with Santa (he had just asked for an airplane)

One minute he's happy & dancing...

The next, he's pouting because he doesn't want his pic taken!

And then, happy again!!


One party down...

Tonight was the first of many of our Christmas get togethers and it was a fun one to start off the season. We headed up to church for the Deacon's banquet. Since David was just recently ordained, this was our very first one to attend. We did get a pretty good laugh a couple of nights ago when the chairman called to see if we needed childcare for tonight. You see, it's only been recently that PBC has had deacons that were young enough to have small children!! But now there are several of us "younger" families. Of course, that just means that the guys have many wonderful, seasoned examples of what it truly means to be a servant in our church.
Afterwards, several of us headed over to our friend's (The Anderson's) house for Hot Cider. Peyton loved it because he got to play Wii with Collin and Drew!!

Jeffrey, Rebecca, Jenn, David, Lindsey, Terry

I L-O-V-E these friends!!



Oh good grief! Now I've joined FaceBook. Am I finally getting with technology or what?!? Here it is after midnight and I've been on that silly site for hours...yes, I said hours. I've seen pictures of people that I had long ago forgotten, so it was fun.