Tuesday, December 29, 2009

snow play

Don't you love our super safe sledding hill down the side of the house and into the woods? Really, it is safe...as long as a couple people stand guard in front of the big trees and no one gets up enough speed to make it to the icy creek...it's great fun!
So after watching this going on, I took Tristan and Lily on a sledding date to the park down the road. The wide, open park with nice big tree-less hills. That was fun.
There is more snow coming tonight but unfortunately we won't have much time to enjoy it. Fortunately, that's because we're getting ready to make the drive to Texas for my brother's wedding. Well, the wedding part is fortunate...can't say the same for the sitting in the car with small kids for many, many, many hours part.
I'd so much rather go sledding.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

and more bird watching

I love sitting by my parent's giant windows, watching the snow fall peacefully on bare trees and the birds -so many birds- at the feeders. Finches, Cardinals, Flickers, Doves and the occasional squirrel flying from branches in a brazen attempt to steal the bird seed. It's quite a display.

Friday, December 25, 2009


from our family to yours with love

For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given;

And the government will be upon His shoulder
And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6


Thursday, December 24, 2009

dreaming of a white Christmas

Tristan finally got his wish and just in time for Christmas! Snow is falling, The Night Before Christmas has been read and kids are sleeping (well, they are in bed anyway). Stockings have been filled, movies are being watched and desserts eaten. There is much wrapping and sneaking and whispering...
"Merry Christmas to all and to all a Goodnight!"

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

There's going to be a wedding...

...in just ten days!

My brother, Nathan, will be marrying his love, Amanda, on January 2nd, 2010!

These two are so adorably in love and we are thrilled to be welcoming Amanda into the family.
Congratulations and love to you both!

Monday, December 14, 2009

O (crooked) Christmas Tree

We chose the tree and they delivered and set it up. How easy is that? (Especially since Grandad is recovering from a pretty serious hand surgery and the tree had a crooked trunk making it tricky to get in the stand) We strung the lights, carefully placed the ornaments, admired our lovely tree and tried to take a few pictures of the kids...

Once I gave up on getting a good photo, the kids went to sleep and Yiayia and I were all set to clean up and admire our handiwork. The tree was so pretty all sparkling red, white and gold by the cozy, glowing fireplace. What a sweet, pleasant Christmas memory.
Then the tree fell on me. It fell over completely. On me. Yiayia was vacuuming up the last of the pine needles so I had to scream really loud until she noticed my legs sticking out from under the pile of Christmas that was our tree. She ran over and lifted it off my head and we began the looooong process of making it stand up again. Darn that crooked tree...

In the end, poor Grandad with his gimp hand had to come to our aide along with some plywood, a hammer, nails and fishing line. Yes, our tree is tied to the walls. But it is sparkling and so lovely and already surrounded by gifts for the eighteen people who will soon gather around it. What a sweet, pleasant, hilarious Christmas memory.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

winter wonderland

Technically it is still Autumn, isn't it? Well, in these parts, Winter has certainly decided to settle in early. Tristan and I took a short hike/slide down to the frozen creek behind my parent's house. There was something magical about the quiet shadows, leaves frozen beneath the ice and the look in those blue eyes. He's in awe of winter, praying for more snow and so so eager for his cousins to join him here.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

As you can see, we made it to Kansas. The kids are thrilled and don't seem to mind the ten degree temperature. Today, this mama got to sleep late, shower without a single interruption and drink coffee she did not make herself. She may not ever go home.

Monday, December 7, 2009

movies and modge podge

Do you remember the Disney musical Babes in Toyland? You know, with Annette Funicello and the scary trees and the toy factory and the village dancers in brightly colored twirly skirts...I love that movie. So, I introduced it to my kids this year with a bit of trepidation but thankfully, they loved it too! We must have watched our Netflixed copy about six times in the last couple of weeks. During one of those viewings I sat and clipped pictures out of all our Christmas catalogs (I had to make good use of them before I stuffed them into the recycle bin -and do you know how relaxing mindless paper cutting can be?) Once I had a nice stack of clippings going, I turned the kids loose on some red paper with glue sticks and they created really great holiday art and gift packaging. Can't beat an easy movie and craft afternoon like that.
Now when would be a good time to introduce the girls to Pollyanna...?

Friday, December 4, 2009


We're still here! Things have been very quiet and very busy at the same time. We are getting ready to spend a month with my family in Kansas and the challenges and worries and details of leaving a house and a dog and getting on a plane with three little people and all our stuff has had me somewhat preoccupied. I don't know if it is a case of photographer's block or just a lack of time and energy but I have taken only a handful of photos in the past couple weeks and they aren't very good. But they do tell a story...they always do.
Like this one. I love her style. Anything goes, whether it's backwards plaid shorts and too-small boots or her baby sister's clothes. Yesterday she insisted on wearing the outfit I had chosen for Kate (because it used to be hers). I let her try it, sure it would be too small and the game would be over, but she's such a peanut it still fit! She just looked at me with her huge gap-toothed grin and said, "See?!" We had a good laugh and picked out something else for Kate.
Tristan is the sweetest boy I have ever known. Yes, I know I am his mom but if I wasn't I'm sure I would still feel that way. We have had some precious conversations in the past couple of weeks. His thoughts, his voice, his hugs and sheepish grin -all forever etched into my memories of my five year old son.
And this little one is an armful of pudgy, squishy, drooly, roly, poly, silly, giggly baby girl. One of my greatest joys these days is watching Kate play in the bathtub. She is all baby fat and happy squeals as she splashes and blows bubbles -you can't help but laugh with her.
So that's what I've been up to as the blog has sat in silence. Working on keeping these little priorities straight and looking forward to some good family time and Christmas. I have a feeling it's going to cure my photography block real quick!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

"If we complained less and were more thankful, we would be happier, and God would be more glorified. Every day thank God for ordinary mercies- we refer to them as ordinary, and yet they are so priceless that without them we are ready to perish. Let us thank God for our eyes with which we see the sun, for the health and strength to walk around, for the bread we eat, for the clothes we wear.
Let us thank Him that we are not among the hopeless or confined among the guilty; let us thank Him for liberty, for friends, for family associations and comforts. Let us praise Him, in fact, for everything that we receive from His generous hand, for although we deserve little, He provides an abundance."
-Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening

Let them thank the Lord for His steadfast love, for His wondrous works to the children of men! Psalm 107:8

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


Black olives on fingers has been a Thanksgiving tradition in my family for as long as I can remember (it's our greek blood). It's just not Thanksgiving until someone waves their olive hands around. Tristan won't go near olives (or any other food that is not bread) so this is the first year I've been able to get one of my kids to do it. Kenna looked at her hand and promptly exclaimed, "it looks like a froggy hand!" Well, yes. Yes it does. How come in thirty years of Thanksgivings that never occurred to me? I love the two year old mind.
And I love this silly tradition. What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions?
We're heading out of town today to spend some time with good friends.
I hope your holiday is full of joy, blessing, family, friends and good food (and perhaps a few olives on your fingers).

Saturday, November 21, 2009

links to make you SMILE

For every one good picture of the kids I take, I have about a thousand of these -
No smiles there. Kenna looks like Cousin It and Kate is doing her rolly polly thing. I love it. You should see the attempts at getting our whole family in that picture. What I need is the help of a dear friend who also loves to to take photos and does a great job...oh wait, I have one of those! But she lives six states away. Shoot. For all of you in the Houston area, maybe you can take advantage of this sweet mama's skills. She has a new photography business up and running and some beautiful pictures to share over here at her new site. Tell her I sent you (that way if I ever do get the chance I can hit her up for a discount! hehe) Sara has some wonderful creative talent and three really adorable boys that give her plenty of practice with the camera - While we're talking photos, I bet you're all trying to figure out what to do for Christmas cards for this year, right? No? Well, you better get on it. Only 35 days left you know, but I have your solution! Head over to the Kojo blog and check out the amazing finds and creations by my friend Jordan and her sister. Their Etsy shop is full of gorgeous card designs -gorgeous! It gets better. Now through November 30, they are offering an amazing deal -purchase a $15 digital card design and get 100 5x7 photo cards with envelopes free!! When I saw that I was absolutely kicking myself for having already made our card. Theirs are SO much better!
So check out the links today and enjoy the photo goodness you will find at both. And smile!
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