Thursday, December 29, 2016

My Christmas Gifts

Viva and Bentley gave me Christmas gifts that them made.

Viva made me a blue truck out of duct tape modeled on the truck that I drive.

Bentley gave me the Christmas tree that he made in Cub Scouts.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Smash, Crash, and Chasing Balls

For Christmas I bought the little guys a hot wheels smash and crash race track.  You add batteries and a strong air current propels the cars off the starting track super fast/they loop around/when enough are on the track they'll start crashing off each other in the center intersection.  It has been quite the hit with the little guys AND their older siblings.  I guess objects in motion never get old... ?!

And on that note, the ping pong table is back out!  It was a Christmas gift from last year.  We've had it out on and off during the last year, but comparing the kids a year ago to today it's crazy to see how much bigger Lincoln and Evan are now than they were a year ago!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Museum Fun!

Matt has this week off of work, so it's time for adventures with Daddy before it's back to school work and work travel.  Today the group headed off to the museum.  It's been a while since we've been down there, and they had a great time!  A few years back our museum combined with a kids "imaginarium" (a hands on science center) so we have a nice mix of kid fun and more typical museum fare.  :)

Monday, December 26, 2016

A Musical Christmas!

On Christmas Eve and Christmas day the kids did some Christmas songs for us!  It was fun, as we had both trumpet/cello and harp/cello duets.  It's fun to see how much Bentley and Jake have learned int he past year, and what a great start Genevieve has on mastering the harp.  Lincoln and Evan wanted to get in on the fun too, so Lincoln shared the beginning of the Twinkle Twinkle song he's learning and Evan did a one note variation of Jingle Bells.  :) 

Sunday, December 25, 2016

A Christmas Shot!

We haven't managed to do an "official" yearly picture with the kids yet, it has been a rather long six weeks with different flu and cold bugs hitting the house over (and over and over...) - I did manage to capture one of the kiddos and their Dad on Sunday before they ripped their church clothes off though!  (To be completely accurate I should state that one of them had already ripped half the clothes off and was quite irked to be forced back into them... and another wasn't too thrilled either.  I'm sure their facial expressions don't give that away though... hahaha!!)

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas Eve

We had our traditional Christmas Eve celebration. We had meal together, read the Christmas story, and sang a few Christmas carols. The children provided some of the music (covered in a blog post by Kara). Then we opened gifts. Great-grandma was at Mark and Cynde's.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Christmas Crafts: Viva!

Viva is our crafter. She is very good at it.  Kara found an idea online for a Christmas candy cane wreath  and Viva made it for her mom.

This is one my favorite ornaments, but the boys don't enjoy making it. It takes too long. Viva made a couple of smaller ones.

When I told the older children they could have any kit in my Christmas box, Viva chose a couple to make as gifts.

You might have noticed in the Christmas Ornament posts that she helped her little brothers make a lot of their ornaments.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Christmas Ornaments: Other

As is our tradition every year the older children make at least one new stained glass (really plastic melt beads) ornaments. We helped the little guys each make one this year. We have quite a collection of these ornaments (going back more than 30 years) that we display on the window.

Our church sponsored a Christmas party for the local children in foster care. It was a pretty big undertaking. I volunteered to do an ornament table. I tried out a new ornament using thick felt cut outs (originally on a garland). I had my little worker bees try out the project and make samples for me.

The children preferred using glitter glue for decorating the ornaments and that wasn't possible for the foster care party because it takes too long to dry. For the party we had to go with sequins and glue dots. I also took supplies to make beaded candy canes and snowflakes. Viva helped me out at the ornament table and Jake helped Opa at the photo booth.  (Was Bentley there? I'm not sure.)

Christmas Ornaments: More Kits

Michaels has such a great selection of Christmas craft kits at great prices that I cannot resist purchasing them. I give them away, the grandchildren make some, and still I have too many. Here's what the children chose to make this year:

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Gingerbread Men!

Evan and Lincoln had a play date with Ava, Alivia, and Grandma Karen.  They came home with these fine looking gingerbread men:

Monday, December 12, 2016

Christmas Ornaments: Perler Beads

We haven't made any Perler bead ornaments before and I had picked up a few kits at Michaels, so we gave it a try. All the children made at least one and they enjoyed doing it.

Monday, December 05, 2016

Everyday Life: November

I didn't take a lot of photos last month and I don't have any photos of Bentley or Jake for this post.

Viva with Evan and Lincoln creating baking powder and vinegar lava for their volcano.

Daily learning to read time.
(This is really a poor quality photo, but it's too late to retake it!)

Kara cuts all the boys hair.
Evan is lucky boy in this photo.

Viva and Evan sharing a moment of harmony. 

Evan and Lincoln playing a story telling game with Great-grandma.

Lincoln and Viva and Legos

Pomegranate Helmet Ramses
(We were trying to recreate a photo of another family pet who rocked a pomegranate helmet. We needed a larger pomegranate to make this work.)

Friday, December 02, 2016

Sledding Adventures

We've had a few good snow falls, but mostly lacking in snow this winter.  Which means that when the snow does show up the kids want to jump on the chance to sled!  Luckily for them they have an obliging Grandma and Opa who brave the cold with more grace than the children's mother.... :)   (The kids went sledding once (all of them) and then the next day the boys went again, but Viva declared it too cold and stayed home!)