Saturday, December 29, 2012

Our little Christmas

We had a wonderful time getting ready for the Christmas season and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Weston understands much more this year and appreciated all the decorations, tree, the Christmas story and excitement. It is so fun to see Christmas brand new through the eyes of your children and helped me to remember the awesome miracle that we celebrate!

Weston got to go to a Christmas party at church all by himself with Daddy and he had so much fun

 Before Christmas we made a last minute trip to Manteca and had fun making gingerbread houses with the cousins

During the Christmas season our church puts up real trees all over the campus and I just LOVE them. This day we were all at church together, which is rare these days due to someone always having the sniffles or something :) we had to take a picture!

Andrew bundled them up for their walk to the donut shop for a Christmas donut

One weekend we had a baking day with some girls in the high school group

Each year our church puts on a wonderful Christmas concert and this year my Dad's Uncle and cousin came with us and had dinner at our house afterwards. I made my mom's white chili, our Christmas tradition growing up.

They were so sweet and brought the boys remote control cars!

Christmas Eve we had the joy of having over the Drumm family. They have 2 darling girls and baby boy on the way. The boys LOVE playing with the girls and we ended the night with a little dance party in the family room

Christmas morning was nice and relaxing- we had a fire and opened presents and then our friend Jonathan came over for breakfast

Daddy reading the Christmas story

For the boys present from us we got them a wooden Thomas the Train track set

 After breakfast we packed up to drive up north to Andrew's side of the fam for a week together.
The drive was a little rainy but we made great time. We arrived in time for dinner and to be spoiled by more presents and my favorite- matching PJ's! We are having a great time relaxing and playing and of course eating :)
Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas!

We wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
But we hope your Christmas is merry, not because of the presents, food and parties, but because of the hope we have in the Savior who came to seek and save the lost. We hope you have a happy new year, not because of the fleeting promises of a better economy, future vacations or more time spent together, but because of the sure future we have knowing that God is in control and that He is good despite what the news is saying.
The reality is that most people aren't going to have a merry Christmas and the new year doesn't look too promising. For so many the holidays remind people of what they don't have, the loved ones they have lost and the long winter nights seem so very long. People are going through very hard things...much like the very first Christmas. The first Christmas was nothing like the movies we see and the pretty cards we send out. Jesus came in a very dark time spiritually and politically, he came in a barn full of stinky animals and His first visitors were lowly shepherds straight from the fields. Christ came not to make our lives picture perfect but to give us a perfect Savior and a perfect hope in a future with Him after this life is over. If we repent of our sins, believe in Him, (His birth, death and resurrection) and live our lives as a thankful offering to Him, we have a blessed hope outside of our current circumstances. We can have a merry Christmas and a happy new year even if life isn't merry and happy at the moment.

We hope that this Christmas is wonderful and beautiful for you, but if it isn't we pray that-
" the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:7

"But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."" Luke 2:10-12

Merry Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Radicchio Christmas Salad

This salad is simple and delicious and the color is perfect for a Christmas dinner side. Radicchio is a beautiful bitter lettuce, so a sweet dressing and the cranberries pair perfectly. The fennel and the walnuts add a yummy crunch- hope you enjoy :) 

Christmas Salad

1 large red Radicchio finely chopped
1 pear finely sliced
1 small fennel bulb finely sliced or shaved on a mandolin
1/2 cup cranberries
1/2 cup walnuts toasted
1/4 cup each: olive oil, balsamic vinegar, apple butter

combine all ingredients, serves 4

An AZ Thanksgiving

We were able to take the (long, holiday traffic) drive to AZ for this Thanksgiving and we loved every minute! (our time in AZ, not the traffic!) My sister was able to come too with Ryder and it was so fun to have all the little boys together. Gabriel and Ryder especially loved playing together and it was sweet to watch their interactions.

My mom making her famous cedar plank salmon on the grill. The weather was warm and nice so we were outside alot

One of the days we went to a little farm and made friends with some goats and bunnies and ran around in a hay bale maze

Another day we LOVED exploring the train museum in Phoenix- it was awesome. They had the biggest model train exhibit. I think Weston would have stayed in there all day

With the thanksgiving feast leftovers, my sister made the best turkey nachos! Let me say that Andrew was just a little bit excited

Thanks Omie and Grandpa for all the love and toys and fun! We loved spending Thanksgiving with you in your beautiful home, we are very thankful to have you as parents and grandparents. We are so blessed!