Friday, January 31, 2014

Lydia's 4th Birthday...

Lydia turned 4.  December 29th.
She could hardly wait.
I was not as excited as her.
Seems like just yesterday...

And now we are here already.

Her sisters completely adore her...

And she adores them...

She's one lucky little girl.

Our lives would never be the same without her.

We had family and friends over that night for her party.

This cake does not say "4-years- old" to me.
But the last one in Sam's when we remembered to grab one Saturday night.

Lydia was super excited to play "duck, duck, goose" with all her BIG friends.
And for Lydia...
They were all willing.

 She had huge plans for her friend party.
Those plans changed almost daily.
And when it came down to it right after Christmas.
We barely got the invites out on time.
I sent Tayler and Lydia to the store to buy, "whatever she wanted for her party and party bags."

Tayler and Saige reminded me of all of the "themed parties" I have thrown for them over the years.
Yep, I'm getting old and tired.
Sorry Lydia.
I think she had plenty of fun despite it all.

What a super cute bunch of little kids.
And how awesome is it to have older sisters to help them play all the "party games"?

Saige made the cupcakes...

and these little kids made us giggle.

We love you Lydia.
Love that you are 4.
And love that you love that you are 4!

Happy Birthday Miss Lydi!!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Christmas 2013...

Love Christmas Eve...
Love having my family over.

Love delicious food.

Love gorgeous winter days like this one was.
A perfect day for a family snowball fight.
We invested in these snowball makers (found them at Sportsman Warehouse).  I actually might stand a chance in a snowball fight with these!
But I was still happy to be the photographer... thus not getting soaked like these crazies!!

Two small children retreated in tears.
Other than that I think they all had a great time!

There was the traditional "chimes" playing...

Later Shane dressed up as Santa to help deliver some gifts with our girls and the Astle's.
He looked pretty great!

The Christmas Eve "pajama tradition" continued.

Three little thugs... 

They all had a sleepover in Tay's room.
Pretty sure they didn't all end up sleeping in the bed though. :)

So glad our girls love each other so much.

It took them forever to go to sleep.
They kept checking the "Santa Tracker."

But then...
It was Christmas Morning.

And everyone was super happy with their gifts... and each other.

Shane spent the morning putting things together....
like flying fairies.  haha
One day he's going to be super excited to put something boyish together with a little grandson. :)

A yummy lunch at my mom's.

Acting out the nativity.

And cousin time.

Made Christmas super special.
We went to the afternoon showing of Frozen.
And spent a quiet night together.

Christmas 2013 was perfect.

Friday, January 17, 2014

December Memories...

December was filled with all kinds of fun.
Minus Christmas and Lydia's 4th Birthday this is what was happening around our house.

Simon (our elf) watched over us, obviously reported good things since Christmas was great, AND managed to find a new spot to hide EVERY night.
That's pretty good for a sneaky little elf like him!

We had our annual neighborhood spoons/caroling party again.
It was one of those super cold December nights with single digits for the high.
We didn't want to freeze + figured that no one would leave their door open long enough to actually hear our carols.  So we hit up a nursing home instead.
I thought it was fabulous

The spoons tournament was won by "cocky" Josh Astle... for the second year in a row.
Next year he's not invited!! :)

Love our neighborhood.
And love that this traditions brings all the older, moved out children home for the night!!

Kenna wowed us with her violin skills at her Christmas concert.

We attended Sky View Basketball Games.

And Aggie Basketball Games.

My parents treated our entire family to the "Bandito Christmas show".
Super fun.

We had hot cocoa from this cute little stand raising money for their friend.

We spent one super amazing family/service night together.

Our first stop was a visit with Santa.
Lydia was NOT excited... yet was able to convince herself that it would be fine as long as she didn't have to touch him with her hands.
Jadyn is over the Santa phobia... the phobia that she was not able to convince herself out of for the past 4 years.  Proud of you both Jadyn and Lydi!

Then we were off for our Random Acts of Kindness night.

went to the Temple and gave people leaving, cookies or gift cards to Coldstone.
taped quarters to the candy machines at the mall.

Payed for the cars behind us at McDonalds.
Left popcorn at Redbox.

And best of all made visits to 3 sweet widow/widowers in our ward.
Such amazing stories they have to share about their lives.

And then a visit to Shane's momma at the nursing home.
She's a sweetheart.  Always so positive.  Even in not so fun situations.

It was a great night!!

Other nights there were stories...

And Lydia being silly.
"Hey mom lets move the mirrors so that there are lots of Lydia's and Momma's"
She says it all the time, decided it was time to take my 1st mirror pic.
It's those little moments I'm going to miss, she's growing up too dang fast!

Even counted the days down to her 4th Birthday at the end of the month.
Sometimes 3 times a day.

She's a cutie.

Do you remember being little and "getting the beater?"
I do.
Lydia got it this time and obviously Tayler was jealous.
Or just plain mean... :) this is a capture of about 3 seconds. hahaha

heartbroken... :)

And although this picture of Tayler and Hayden making gingerbread houses is cute.
The look on Lydia's face is my favorite.
It's the same face Shane might have had at that moment... :)

Tayler and Hayden competed for the best house against his sister and Saige.
The sisters won!

We had our annual Christmas party with the Carlsen's
Love every single one of them!

Sadly had to cancel our party with Shelby and Reed and Fam. sickness :(

There was a family karaoke/movie/sleep under the tree night.
This karaoke part was at about midnight.
Just how we roll around our house.
(Jadyn is the best in this pic) :)

Not ALL of us made it the entire night for the sleepover. :)

There were photo op ideas gone bad.
Like this picture in the snow idea.
2 little girls did NOT think this was very fun.


"Santa" came to visit and brought us presents.
That's Joe...
and he and Lisa spoil us and our girls.
We couldn't love them anymore than we do!

Shane dressed up as Santa's elf to make an appearance at a party with Tayler and her friends.

What a pair!

There were some quiet moments in December.
...but not many.

But a month definitely filled with memories.
The most wonderful time of the year.