Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas Morning!

I know that it's New Year's Eve and many people have already taken down their trees and all that jazz, but...it's still Christmas around these parts. I don't typically make resolutions, and I didn't meet very many of my goals from this past year (baha) so let's not talk about THAT. :D Christmas morning sounds like more fun.

There must have been something in the air this year, because I hear a lot of kids slept in this Christmas, and ours did, too! I think that's just nuts, considering my siblings and I made a habit of waking up our parents, having breakfast, and opening presents all before the sun had a chance to rise. But once they were up, the fun began!

The girls dove for the stuffed animals and ran to their stockings before I even had a chance to grab the camera, haha. So since I didn't get a good Christmas morning shot, here was our tree the night before:


Smaller than years past, but intentionally so. It was just about perfect. :)

This was the first picture I took that morning:

Half asleep, but not wasting any time. :)

We always begin with stockings, and this year I wrapped some of the small gifts tucked inside. I don't usually do that, but since there were fewer presents under the tree I thought it would be fun to have more to open.




Stockings are my favorite. I just love picking out little things! The water bottles were actually a daddy score when he stopped by the toy store on his way home from work one night. Go Eric. :)

Reagan slept through all of the stocking stuff, but eventually he did receive his gift, too! He spent most of the morning cheering on his big sisters as they opened presents. "Go, girls, go!" Observe:




Hehe.

And he's such a happy baby - this picture cracks me up:


"Oh boy, it's Christmas!"
I hope you read that in a squeaky baby voice, cause that's totally how I meant it. :)

Here's a down and dirty breakdown of a few of the kids' gifts. 

"Something they want..."


Dream Lites. And yep, they were totally worth hunting down a good deal on. The girls LOVED them.

"...something they need..."

New bedding for all!



The girls helped Reagan with his. As you can see, he was very excited about it. :)




Next up:
"...what you think they might like..."



I didn't have to think, I knew they wanted this!

"...and something to read..."

Here is Reagan's!


The kid is going places, I'm telling ya.

"Finally, get them something to wear..."



Evie shouted, "Owl clothes!!" She gets excited about everything. :)

"...and this year your Christmas tree will not be bare." <-- And it certainly wasn't.

After presents were opened and cinnamon rolls were eaten, I tried to get some pictures of the kids in their jammies before we all got ready for the day. Posing three kids at this age is...a challenge. I'm lucky to get a halfway decent shot, haha.



Good enough! 

We had another Christmas party to attend on this day at Eric's cousin Sharon's house. It was a great day filled with food and family. We were chasing kids around and didn't get any pictures while we there, but we tried to get just one family shot before we left.

Doing this required setting up our camera on a tripod and using the timer - which we've never done. We told the girls to "look at the magic flashing light!" to get them to face forward. Oh my goodness, I'm laughing just thinking about this little experiment. Well...you'll see.... Here are a few of the pictures we got.




Baha...we ended up with a couple of passable poses, but ultimately gave up. We'll try again some other day!


Too bad Eric's head kept getting cut off!


We came home on Christmas evening to a house that looked like someone picked it up and shook it around so that the contents just spilled out everywhere. I'm still trying to catch up on housework! And that wasn't even the last of our celebrating. We had even more festive fun over the weekend...but...that one's going to have to wait. :) 


Friday, December 28, 2012

One More Gift....

We are saying goodbye to aunt Peggy today, so I don't have time to do a full blog post. But I did want mention one thing: life is very precious. This is apparent to us on days like these more than any other. We only get one, and some of us will have a harder road than others. For reasons unknown, some live a full and healthy life with little problem, and some will be fighting for strength every day - even little babies. I mentioned our niece Tessa in yesterday's post and how she is undergoing treatment for tumors on her kidneys at just four months old. Please lift her up in prayer whenever you can. There is another little girl who could use our help and our resourses this holiday season.


Abigail Foster, daughter of Rebecca Sharer and TJ Foster suffers from the rare childhood autosomal disorder Chediak-Higashi Syndrome. This disease affecting both the immune and nervous systems is so rare that Abby is one of only four diagnosed children worldwide.  

It's time for Abby to come home from the hospital, but after being hospitalized for a very long time, she doesn't have a home to go to. Her family needs serious financial help, and here's how you can bless them AND get something amazing for yourself at the same time. Visit this site for all the details on how you can bid to win this amazing piece of artwork, valued at $2,000.


Bidding ends TODAY, and the bids are low! If you're able to participate in the auction I'm sure the family would really appreciate your support. You can also visit Abby's facebook page here. Thank you, friends!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Eve Part 2

When we woke up on the morning of Christmas Eve, Moe was waiting with a goodbye letter for the family. It was sad parting with our little friend, but he promised to come back next year, and he left the girls some reindeer food to throw out later that night. :) 


Our day started in the early afternoon, so we got spiffied up and ready to go to great grandma and grandpa Robert's house.


(Reagan knows better than to trust Gracie standing behind him, haha.)


The girls decided they needed to smother their brother in kisses. No, I didn't tell them to do it. :)




Eric mentioned recently that we haven't been getting enough pictures of our baby boy, but I'm pretty sure after the holidays we will have plenty!


 We were among the first to arrive at grandma and grandpa's house, but the kids never have any problems keeping themselves entertained. Grace spent the first hour or so playing with toys and Evie occupied herself by swiping lots of vegetables from the table. Pretty sure the kid made ten plates that day. :)



I told Evelyn to say cheese....


Nice. :)


Cousins arrived and soon the rest of the day was just complete pandemonium. It was loud and crazy - ah...like the holidays of my very own childhood. 


Hehe, little Lilly is so cute. It's been a long time since her pretty face has been on this blog!

Soon it was announced that we were going to let the kids start looking in their stockings and opening presents. You can see how Evelyn felt about that....


Great grandma Robert had really neat cards for the kids in their stockings that moved and played music. They were occupied for quite a while with just a few peices of cardstock...who needs toys? Haha.


I have a ton of pictures of kids opening presents after this, but apparently I didn't upload them here. That's okay - just picture lots of paper flying and the entire floor covered with toys, haha. Once again, our girls were blessed with many fabulous gifts, and we are so thankful to our family for loving our babies.




^ Reagan spent most of the holidays like this. Either sleeping or looking like he was ready for nap. "Wake me up when the madness is over." Haha.

Doctor kits were a huge hit this year!



^ Ha! This picture cracks me up every time I see it. Uncle Bruce is getting a shot in the head. :)

Austin LOVES Mickey mouse. He got lots of Mickey gifts this year! 


Some of you may have noticed one of our family members that is missing from all of the holiday photos this year. I haven't mentioned it here yet, but now I think I can share that our beautiful niece Tessa was diagnosed with Wilms' disease the day before Thanksgiving. This means that she has tumors on her kidneys, and she has been undergoing chemo treatments to shrink them. We have been praying for her full recovery since the moment we received this news, and I know that Tessa's mom and dad would appreciate your prayers, too! We have missed seeing Tessa's pretty face at family gatherings, but we just want her to get better as soon as possible so that she can join us for the fun once again! We love her so very much.

This next picture is hilarious, and I didn't even mean for it to be. :) I was trying to take a picture of the kids playing doctor with aunt Amy, but in the foreground you'll see Grace trying to BITE her grandpa. (Okay, so THAT'S not funny, haha.) You see, at the Robert family Christmas one thing you can always count on is holiday slush, a yummy concentrated drink mixed with 7-up. Gracie discovered slush this year, and I think she had about twenty cups of it. At one point, I caught Grace in the freezer with a spoon helping herself to the frozen mix, haha. She was addicted

So here you see grandpa Greg trying to take her slush cup away, and well....


...yeah. Don't mess with Grace's slush!

We had a wonderful time, as usual, sharing Christmas with the Robert family. We had another stop to make that evening, so at 6:00pm we packed up and headed to my grandparent's house across town. There are even more cousins there and even less space, haha. It's always nuts, and I never seem to have time to snap pictures. One of these days we'll document a Linnertz family Christmas!

My grandma has about a million grandchildren (or maybe half that) and she gets each and every one a small gift every year. We so appreciate that, so thank you grandma! We enjoyed a yummy taco dinner and the girls had a blast running around with their cousins before we finally walked back through our own door that night. Once the kids had finally wound down and drifted to sleep, Eric and I got to work!

Well...I got to work, Eric fell asleep on the couch. :)



We set up the tripod in preparation for the next morning and went to bed ourselves.

Whew!

Did the kids have a great Christmas morning? Well of course. :) I'm not sure if I'll be able to update tomorrow or Monday, but Christmas day is up next! Have a great day, friends.

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