Friday, January 8, 2010

1000 Pictures...better than 1000 words???

Here's my attempt to do a quick catch up of December. With any luck I can do this with less than 1000 words (or 1000 pictures!)

(3 kids + 2 cousins) x 10 days =chaos, fun & memories!
My sister-in-law's father-in-law passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, so we whisked a few kids out of the trauma while they dealt with the enormity of such an event. Thankfully my mother-in-law flew in to help out!

(L-R) Maya, Avery Jackson, Alice

Alice & Avery

24 days of family fun and traditions
Thanks to a fabulous little house with 24 doors (kind of like the one above) we did all the small and simple activities that we had wanted to during our busy December. I think this is our second year doing this and I love how it spreads out all the small things that I always want to do but seem too busy to make time for. We have a list of ideas but decide each day what we have time for then put a paper in the door and the girls love to open it and see what the activity is. Here a list of ideas in case you ever want to try something similar!

Temple lights & performance
Shopping for sisters
Shopping with Mom for Dad & with Dad for Mom
Read Christmas story books
Wrap package for Uncle Joseph
Make Gingerbread houses
Make snowflakes
Make a Christmas craft
Make cards/letters/gifts for Grandparents
Strawberry shortcake Christmas Movie
Take pencils & a treat to a friend
Deliver neighbor & friend gifts
Mount Vernon Christmas event
Make gingerbread men
Elderly home visit
Read a Christmas book
Sing Carols
Candy Canes
Chocolates & a scripture
Write a letter to Santa
Wrap presents
Barbie: a Christmas Carol movie
Make G'pa's Carmel Corn & Fudge
Christmas Eve Soup & Nativity

A yummy gingerbread house!

Lights at the DC Mormon Temple
Always a sight to behold. The kids had fun watching their cousins perform in the nightly concert and picking out their favorite Christmas trees!

A Huge Snowstorm
So much fun!

Uncle Paul visited

...need I say more?

Christmas Eve Traditions
Soup + fancy cheeses & crackers
Dressing up and acting out the nativity
Opening 1 present--new PJs sewed by G'ma Messick!
Putting out cookies, milk & a carrot for Santa & Rudolf
To bed to bed before Santa comes!!!

Hayley with baby Jesus


Ryan's sister, Tammy & her boyfriend, Hugh

New PJs!

Christmas Day
First to wake up: Hayley, 5:45am (we made her do math problems in our bed to keep her busy until 6:30!)
Stockings on Dad & Mom's bed: 6:30am (start that sugar infusion early!)
Presents, playing and pjs all day...hurray!!!

Hayley was excited about her 3 musketeer Barbie & movie!
Maya was so happy to finally get her dreamed of Littlest Pet Shop animals.
Alice just couldn't believe she finally has her own more stealing her sisters!

Christmas dinner: Ham & potatoes...Plus those silly hats from our traditional British Crackers that we pull! Another wonderful Christmas. We are blessed and spoiled and just so happy and thankful to be alive and have such wonderful family & friends!

Fun times with Dean & Kristen +5
The day after Christmas D&K's family came over to play and eat leftovers! Fun cousins. Who knew 10 years ago that we'd make such a crowd! (Dean is JaNae's brother...9 1/2 years ago we had a double wedding!)

Chloe, Alice & Nicole (Alice just thinks she's Nicole's little momma!)

Uncle Dean with Chloe & Alice (+ Jonathan)

Christmas is over!
I'm always surprised that I am ready to take down Christmas decorations the day after Christmas...I like getting all the space back! This year Maya definitely wasn't ready when I suggested it. So I lasted until 2 days after Christmas when I suggested that she be the "supervisor of the ornament removal". Amazingly--it worked. She asked me what a supervisor was and then immediately assumed her position in a chair telling Hayley exactly which ornament to remove next. I hadn't thought it would really work but I was on board really fast! A couple hours later...ta da! Clean and spacious house again!

New Year's Eve 2009
The traditional Messick "Big Fat Mess" was hosted at our home (translation: gorge yourself on all of our favorite tex-Mex dishes before you start shedding all those pounds on January 1st!)

Dean & Kristen's family arrived in style!

Tammy and Hugh got caught kissing in the kitchen by our mini-spy!

Funny story: Alice is obsessed with our camera! As soon as she sees it she has to have it and it's a really hard battle to fight! So she walks around the house snapping pictures...maybe someday I'll share the world from her's the majority of our pictures these days. This night Tammy & Hugh were in the kitchen "prepping food" while Ryan was wrestling with the girls and waiting for all to arrive. Alice had grabbed the camera from me. Suddenly we heard silence in the kitchen and then a burst of giggles and I said "she caught them!" They never denied it...and we have the proof. Good job Alice!!!
My little brothers are remembered for "spying on" and teasing Ryan and I relentlessly when we were dating--I couldn't be happier that my own offspring can provide some revenge on the younger generation! Sorry it was you Tammy and not Adam...but his day will come!

The kids played so good...

...we even got some adult game-time!

This was our Fake Midnight celebration at about 9pm.
Those horn things are soooo loud when you get 10 kids blowing them--Yikes!!!

After most everyone left we had our own version of a dance in the dark. Hayley and Maya thought it was so romantic (it was Ryan & I and Hugh & Tammy dancing). They were happy to be a part of it before we rushed them off to bed!

Welcome 2010!!!


Aim Aug said...

Looks like you and your cute girls had a very fun holiday!

Paul and Nancy said...

What a fun post! Wish we could have been there to be part of it! Maybe next time! Love ya xxxx

Melissa said...

Did you get to play sequence in your adult game time? I still think of you guys when we play. It's endorsed by Bill Barett...

Tammy said...

This was such a great summary of the holidays! Thanks for all the great photos, and descriptions.

Kraig n Melissa said...

Aww, I love all of your fun traditions! It makes me look forward to when my family is bigger and can take part in all the fun more, and know what's going on. It was nice to see Dean and his family. What's with all the mustaches?!?

Krista said...

Love it JaNae! Way to bust out those december posts. You did a great job!

Ferrel Family said...

Wow, your girls are looking so big! I looks like you guys had a fabulous Christmas. You guys look great!

Hatch said...

So fun! We always talk about making in magical for our little men. It looked like the Messick's make it magical. Plus I giggled at spy Alice and her covert pictures. Funny. Cute girls all three. ANd the mommy and the daddy are pretty great too.

Gina said...

Was it ten days? Gosh it was such a blur to me. All I know is that I didn't worry about my kids one bit and I was sooooo grateful to know they were in good hands. I'm glad they had so much fun. Thank you thank you thank you!!!
New years was fun too! I'm glad we got to sneak in a game while the kids played!