Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Grandpa Bernie's Ornaments

We went to the cemetery Monday to decorate a tree for Grandpa Bernie. We hung man ornament for each grandchild with their name on it, and a handmade mug of iced tea, his favorite beverage. Ben informed me while it was a nice gesture he never took lemon with his tea. The lemon was to make it obvious it was tea, but thanks for the info honey. 
We will always wish Grandpa B was here with us but he lives on in the memories and the kids and I are always learning more about him. This year I learned his favorite Christmas carol, and I know he was smiling down and winking at me recently. He lives on in each of his six grandchildren, his legacy will never fade.

Low Key Christmas

It's been a wonderful week. Sunday we made cookies and painted ornaments. We have all been in the same room for hours at a time and truly enjoyed each others company. The house is staying clean because everyone pitches in Beau was shocked at how often the kitchen needs cleaned. There is no greater gift than time with our family. We miss traveling and having company but we accept what is and have made the most of it. A wonderful Italian Christmas Eve at Aunt Annette's then Mass and bed. Owen has had too much sugar and too little sleep but we will survive him. 
 I did get some better pictures on my other camera but the kids cleaned up pretty well. Beau is always a little low on dress clothes as he grows faster than I can keep up. But he was still handsome in his (lumberjack, as he calls it) dress shirt. Owen and Luke matched almost neither were thrilled with wearing a sweater vest. Anna loves dressing up, and looked beautiful. She asked me to curl her hair, we always laugh when I do her hair because it turns out nice but it's an event getting there.
Christmas dinner at Grandma Marnell's in a little while, but today was low key and quiet. Kids unwrapped presents early, Ben made a simple breakfast, and we have played or napped or rested the whole day. Our blessings are many, so thankful Jesus came so we could celebrate life forever.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Keep on Drumming

Sometimes I feel like I'm not doing enough. I'm not volunteering, working, exercising enough. It seems like when I try to add one more thing the table tilts and kids get sick and again I'm stuck at home. I was having one of those moments when I dropped Luke at school Wednesday. He went with shoes on that his feet were stuffed in because after ten minutes of looking for his shoes we had to walk out the door. I was feeling again that I wasn't enough. Then the Little Drummer Boy came on the radio, as the tears rolled down my cheeks I heard the Holy Spirit whispering, all God wants is for you to play your what you are doing it is enough for giving of yourself to your family you are enough. So to all moms out there feeling the pressure not just during the Christmas season but everyday when you lay your head on your pillow and think of everything undone...what you did today was enough..and so you played for Him on your drums....
As you changed the baby's diaper...
As you loaded the dishwasher...
When it took 15 minutes longer to put the littles to bed because they waited til you'd gone up and down the stairs five times already to ask for their glass of water...
When hubby gets home late and you are up to your neck in homework and bedtime but he still would love it if you heated up his dinner plate...
When the line at the post office is really long so you let your 3 year old bring in his sword (which is a vacuum attachment) and you see the smiles it brings to the other patrons (even the one gentleman that got hit once or twice...
Holding your child as they puke and praying you don't join them...
Lighting the Advent candles and reading over the little ones jabber and the older one burning the pine needles in the candle flame...
Listening to air packs being popped as children's feet stomp them and not saying no even though your ears are ringing...
Letting the kids wrap presents and trying to remember what's what because you didn't have the tags when they did it....
Making it to all the school Christmas parties because your presence matters more than the presents...
So I will keep playing my drums the ones I've been blessed with and stop worrying about not doing enough, more will always be there. Someday my drums will change a little (hopefully not too much) and so will you'd but as long as we keep playing for Him we are enough!

Thursday, December 12, 2013


The nativity is set, the tree is up, the stockings are hung, gingerbread houses complete, and the Christmas specials have begun. Luke and Owen are watching Owens favorite show Paw Patrol tonight. 
I rearranged the living room and did some holiday cleaning. Before bed we will light the Advent wreath and discuss some small things the kids can do every day to help them remember the real reason for the season. I'm hoping to blog about it each day but the rate I've been going that might be a stretch. 
It's my goal to accomplish one task every day that I don't want to do, sometimes it's a list of small tasks and sometimes it's that one thing I've been putting off way too long. Sometimes doing a little at a time adds up to a lot.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Baby time

We were blessed with four new cousins this year. The kids have enjoyed cuddling three of the four. Over Thanksgiving we got to spend time with two of them. There was never a shortage of arms willing to hold babies. By the end of the week even Beau was asking for a turn.

Tree Trimming

The Christmas tree is up the house is decorated. Only 8 more days of school then two weeks of family time!!!


We went to Michigan for Thanksgiving and the kids were thrilled to play in the snow again. We didn't pack appropriately so we layered and wore wrong gender and wrong size clothing but it didn't lessen the fun. Beau and Anna were out the longest and wrestled and laughed, they remember so much fun in snow inMontana that they jumped right in. Luke took a little longer but took a snowball dead on from his brother for $5 and Beau came thru giving him the money when we got home. Boys are strange. Owen loved it his first time that he could remember.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Saturday Morning Scones

It's the first Saturday in a long time where we have nothing on the schedule. Of course all boys were up by 7 and Anna slept in. I didn't really get to sleep in but I did stay in bed and Beau entertained Owen.  As a thank you I made scones for everyone, but it was also a gift for me because they were all in the kitchen area with me. No TV no computer noise just laughter and littles begging for dough while big ones kept peeping in the oven (I've been known to burn a thing or two.) Memories like these make long weeks like this one seem distant and makes the long week ahead of me bearable. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

A Disguised Turkey

Good thing he was this cute once. Luke had to disguise a turkey for homework. I suggested leaves or flower petals. He went to the rose bush without me, there is now a bare section but he has a very pretty pink turkey although it is very well disguised as a rose bush. Such is life in our crazy house.

This was the rose bush this weekend only one section is bare now though so it isn't terrible.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Family Fun

Tonight we went to Georgia Tech to enjoy a family fun fest for Ben's MBA program. The kids had a fantastic time getting something from the GT bookstore and seeing where Ben went to school. They had ice cream sundaes, cotton candy, snow cones and lots of other little treats. Then there was face painting and balloon animals. The boys both had swords made at least two each and right before we left Ana got a white Werner dog. My favorite part was that Ben stood in line and got me a ballon flower, the kids thought it was silly to get a flower and wouldn't do it, but Ben did. One of the greatest flowers he's ever given me. Then it popped, oops. It was fine the fact he had done it was enough for me. But my great fortune wasn't over, we sent Beau to do something and he took forever we thought he had gone to the restroom. When he finally came back he had stood in line and got me another flower. It was so thoughtful and I'm just so thankful and filled with joy that my main man and my almost man would go out of there way to make me happy because its the little things like balloon flowers that are my greatest gifts because it is so much more than ballon. Love family moments like today, my cup overflows.

Friday, November 1, 2013


My picture taking was minimal. We went with a huge group of people and there were a lot of crazy kids. I dressed up as bat mom for the first time in a long time. Luke was Captain America Beau was James Bond but mistaken for a waiter Anna was spider girl (our version and super cute I thought) and Owen was Spider-Man to the rescue. It was a fun night for all and today we are in a sugar coma.