Friday, December 30, 2011

Merry Christmas!

I somehow ran out of Christmas cards this year, so I hope those of you who didn't receive one will accept this in its place; you were not forgotten! I hope your Christmas was a very blessed one. I know ours was; I will share photos and details soon. Much love to you this Christmas and always.

"For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his Kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with Judgment and with Justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perfom this" -Isaiah 9:6-7

Thursday, December 08, 2011


I guess all that reading has paid off; Thomas participated in the school spelling bee today, after succeeding through the first two rounds of competition and making it to the top of his class last week. Today's spelling bee was for fourth and fifth graders only (Thomas is in the fourth grade), but the winners will go on to compete with sixth, seventh, and eighth graders as well, and ultimately for a chance to win a trip to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC.

Thomas didn't make it past today's competition, but he did very well, making it through several rounds of words before misspelling "apron." He was one of 12 qualifying participants in today's spelling bee, out of a possible 111. I figure he'll be in a good position to try again next year. Way to go, Thomas!

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Look who's 2!

Not to be lost amidst all the other happenings last month, my baby celebrated his second birthday. Plans changed a bit, so it was a quiet one at home with just us, but Logan sure had a blast, nonetheless.

Among my favorite memories have to be when he opened one of his presents from Grandma. He had been doing quite well with his potty training, and he and Gabe both love Toy Story (hence the shirt and toy pictured; he had just received both from Nana the day before), so she bought him some Toy Story underwear. He, however, had not yet tried underwear and didn't really get it. He opened up the present and was SO excited to see Buzz and Woody. He handed it to me and asked me to open it and read it. I chuckled and opened it, pulling out the underwear, and he looked at me with this sudden look of disappointment, as if to say, "Oh." Then he went for the next present. LOL. All was not lost, however. The next day we talked about it some more, and he once again became excited. He just didn't know quite what it was when he opened that package!

Happy Birthday, Little Buddy. I love you.

Current favorites: the toys from the Playmobil advent calendar, light-up musical Christmas tree with train, any book he can get his hands on, all the games on Gabe's shelf (Caribou, Candy Land, and many more), lego-style blocks (or anything that fits together, really), coloring, running EVERYWHERE, singing Jingle Bells, playing with the kitchen toys (especially with Gabe) bagels with cream cheese, fresh peppers, tomatoes, yogurt, apples, milk, and puzzles, for starters... Definitely puzzles. (He's disturbingly good at them.)

Oh yes, and for the record, he still pulls on/plays with his ears they way other children suck their thumbs. While he's doing it he makes little clicking sounds with his tongue, especially when he's tired. It's kind of cute. :)

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

This November

It's true what they say; time really does seem to go by so much faster with each passing year. I feel as if I was just posting about Halloween, yet here I am, and it's December. The tree is up, the first seven windows of our advent calendars have been opened, and I've started a small collection of Christmas cards on the kitchen counter. What happened to November? Actually, a lot. Maybe that's why it passed so quickly.

The most memorable event was yet another death in the family; my grandfather passed away just a couple of days before Logan's second birthday. As sad as it was to say goodbye, his passing was in a beautiful way, and while I couldn't be there with him in the hospital, I will be forever grateful for family who could and who shared with me what beautiful events passed during that time. Without going into detail, I just have to say that the Lord was with him, and with my entire family, helping all of us/them/him through the difficult time that it was/is, and I want to thank those of you who prayed for us. Your prayers were heard and answered, without a doubt.

We made a couple of trips to New Hampshire after it happened, first to spend some time with family, namely my father, and then again for the funeral, and I just have to say: Andy (my brother), you are amazing. -Andy has been an associate pastor at his church for a little while now, but living as far apart as we do, I have not been up to hear him preach. I knew he would be a natural, but it was still special to hear him deliver the service in such a personal, loving way. The Lord sure was with him through what had to be a very difficult job; not only was Andy leading the service for his own grandfather, but it was his first time leading any funeral service. I like to think God knew it would be a challenge but one that would strengthen and guide my awesome big brother onward in his journey to becoming a pastor. In any case, it was wonderful, memorable, personal... It really couldn't have been done any better.

I was blessed to be given the opportunity to create a slideshow for the reception, and oh, how I enjoyed looking back through the pages of Grandpa's life. When I was little I typically only saw him once or twice a year, as he lived a few hours away, and I cherished those few moments with him even then. I typically saw him on joyous occasions like holidays and weddings, so combined with my knowledge that it was special to see him in the first place, I always really looked forward to seeing him again, and I always held a certain fondness for him. I do always remember him smiling and keeping things light.

In the year leading up to this past November I happened to see Grandpa much more, and I couldn't be more thankful for that. It all really started last Thanksgiving when we were blessed with his presence in our home. I was so appreciative not only for my time with him, but for the memories he gave our boys; it was a very special, warm, happy Thanksgiving that was intended to be repeated this year. I may have felt a tear or two well up when I mentioned him in my words of thanks before our meal this year, but I hoped he would know it was only in honor of those happy memories.

I think I'll share the slideshow with you here; most of you reading have probably already seen it anyway, but if you're like me, you might like to see Grandpa's loving face again. You'll catch a glimpse into one of my personal favorite memories with one particular photo; my father had taken a drive down to visit, and I had tagged along, as I tended to do on road trips and visits. While I was young enough then that I don't remember every detail now, I do clearly remember coming away from it with that feeling of happiness and contentedness that follows a really nice day. The photo shows me in my bright pink jacket in the front, with my father and grandfather just behind me. We were enjoying a pleasant afternoon walk.

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Thanks be to God for Grandpa, for the happy times, and for the incredible legacy he left behind.