Friday, December 26, 2008

Sooooooo, I know there are no pictures in the Christmas photos below...the problem is that Blogger says I have exceeded my photo storage quota. What?! I didn't know this was possible. Guess so. We will be figuring out the technical difficulties and working to resolve them, in the meantime, sorry you can't see cute photos of my kids. Might this involve a switch to Wordpress?

Christmas 2008

Christmas this year was a little different. We had a white Christmas, the first that I can ever remember. We had so much snow and ice the week before Christmas that the news is saying it's the worst season for retailers in 40 years. We spent a wonderful day at William and Heather's house and luckily Poppop (who tried to cancel Christmas--thinking they weren't going to make it) and Nana were able to hike down their hill and be with us.
Ava and I were listening to Christmas music the other day and a chorus of "Salvation is here because of Christmas Day" came on. She said to me, "Momma, that's not true! Salvation is here because Jesus died for us, not cuz of Christmas Day!!" I said, "But what if Jesus was never born, Ava?" "Ohhhhhh!" she said (A little light bulb went on).
Merry Christmas!!

Jonah on Christmas

"I'm going to close my eyes and when I open them I will be surprised!"

"Yay! A mini disc catcher!"

"Now I have $70!!"

"I've always wanted my own CD player!!!"

Ava on Christmas

"I can't believe it's finally Christmas!"

"Yay! A tea party set for my dollies!"

"'ve always wanted a Target Dollie!"

Brynne on Christmas

"I'm not sure how to open this..."
Sidenote: Brynne saw these babies in my closet and was freaking out because she wanted them and was crying for them, and of course, the mean mom that I am, I said, "Nope, those are for Christmas!"

" OOooooohh! I love those babies!"


"See ya later--I'm not taking any risks on Momma taking these!"

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Snow, Snow, and More Snow!!

Even as I write this post, the snow is falling. . . again. The picture above is before the deluge of snow hit this past Monday. You can see the snow was barely covering the ground...that was then.
This is now! The kids could no longer get the Gator out to drive around (it doesn't have chains, darn it). You can hardly see the pruned rosebushes...
Ava scooping the snow off the grill. She is up to the tops of her boots in a snowdrift! The patio set below is about half-buried!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Would you Like a Cup o' Tea?

Having a spot with Momma from a beautiful tea set hand painted by GG (Grandma Grace), while wearing a ballet ensemble. No tom-boys here.
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Nothing Says....

Pregnancy like spaghetti at 9:20 am

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Day Two of All-Day "Morning Sickness"

How on earth can anyone call this "Morning Sickness?" I am calling it my couch sickness, because that is where I have to stay all day long. I just finished catching up on all your wonderful blogs and most of you are making cookies and yummy treats and doing wonderful Christmas-ey crafts with your little ones. I am dying to do it, too, and yet my (forgive me) vomit-reflex does not allow. My poor kids will have to be satisfied to live vicariously through you all while they watch movies and do workbooks and color some more pictures as I lay on the couch, once again.
As I lay I have been praying for a lot of you (hey, I've got some serious time on my hands) and also for my own growing family, Jon and the kidlets, especially the one growing inside me. That our Father would grow him or her strong and straight; that he or she would not be easily influenced by this world. For the kids and Jon, that Christmas would not be something to "get through" this year while Momma's sick, but that the meaning would penetrate their hearts. And also that this sicky-season would pass quickly!!

Monday, December 15, 2008


This is a powerful 15 minute film I found on Randy Alcorn's blog Eternal Perspectives.
Click here to watch "Volition."
"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves...defend the rights of the poor and needy." Proverbs 31:8

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Numero 4

We are going to have another one of these cuties in August!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Jonah Turns 8 (Can you believe it?!)

Jonah celebrated his birthday with a few friends, cake, and pizza. It was a great time!

Happy Birthday Jo-Jo! We love you so much and are very proud of the brother, son, and young man who loves Jesus that you are becoming more each year. Yay for EIGHT!!
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

It goes on and on and on

I know you all were wondering "How's that kitchen coming?" Well, I thought I would let you see some of my progress. The curtain is on the back door, complete with red rick-rack and the magnetic spice rack is mounted on the wall, thank you Moopie. You can see that I took the time and care to organize my kitchen before I took these, so please no looking for cake crumbs. haha! The cabinets are still waiting to be painted, but all in good time, my friends. This week my Moopie is installing new black outlets and light switches for me!
Posted by Picasa

Performance Night 2008

Ava, "Did you see my earrings?"
Paigey, "Shhhh!"
"If I were a robin in a tree, I'd thank you Father, that I can sing!"

We joined a homeschool co-op this fall called First Class Central Portland, or what everyone calls "Friday School" (cuz it's on Fridays). The kids LOVED it and so did I. We got to know many, many Christian homeschooling families and it was a blessing to go every week. The fall term is over but the last week they put on a performance night, where classes had a chance to show parents and families what they learned. Ava's kindergarten class as well as her Spanish class both sang songs, but Jonah did not have the chance to perform anything. They were asking for parents to sign kids up if the kids wanted to sing or play piano, or whatever, but I didn't even ask my kids if they would want to (normally they don't appreciate being in front of crowds). Well, it turns out Jonah is more like me than we thought and craved the spotlight. He was volunteering to even turn cartwheels across the stage in order to get in the program! His science teacher, our friend Jessica Zeigler, was kind enough to let him stand by the table she had set up and demonstrate the experiments as people came by. He was so stoked and bolted back there as soon as the official program was over. Now we are counting down until Friday School starts up again in mid February.
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Getting To Thanksgiving...

We had such a relaxing Thanksgiving Day with our good friends the Durias'. Mindy and I were cooking up a storm in the kitchen and laughing at how our men were jamming on guitars together (we even heard Jon sing, which means he was really relaxed!). After we were all stuffed the adults just sat in the living room and closed our eyes for about an hour. What a blessing to have friends with whom you don't even have to make small talk. The kids had fun watching Christmas movies and playing ninjas or dollies respectively.
Click here to see who all was on our guest list. (Thanks, Ian!)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Arizona Visit 2008

We've been so busy the past few weeks that I am just now getting these on the blog. We went to visit Poppop and Nana in mid-November and had a great time with them as well as with some friends and family. My sister JoAnna and her family drove 4 hours to see us and the Griffins are on furlough there, too. We celebrated Jonah turning 8 and had incredible weather (the kids swam everyday!). Jon and I were blessed by being able to go on lots of dates and the kids were blessed to have some good Nannie-Poppop time, too. It was a great vacation! (If you want to see the captions for the pictures click on the web-album link after the slideshow)

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Ava "Shirley Temple" Brawley

Ava wanted to try something new this time so instead of ballet she chose tap dancing classes. I was trying to upload a video of her class doing a little routine to "Lollypop, Lollypop" but four hours later when it hadn't loaded I decided to do a shorter one...
When I asked her this morning if she would rather do ballet or tap, she said she would like to do the combo class of ballet and tap. Maybe we do have a little Shirley Temple on our hands.

Monday, November 03, 2008


In case you can't tell what's going on, these kids really love Neil Diamond (oh yes, Gammie!) and Ava keeps yelling that Brynne's doing "The Worm". . .

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Halloween 2008

Jonah was Luigi (from Super Mario Bros), Ava was Dorothy (dress made by Gammie), and Brynne was Toto (in purple jammies). We went trick or treating with some friends in our neighborhood and had a blast! The best part was when one lady gave the kids pennies. Ava came running down the front walk and said "That is a SPECIAL house!! She gave me a PENNY!"

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Happy 34th, Jon!!

The annual Pie-In-The-Face for Jon's b-day last week! We had a great dinner out at Jake's Grill, and a wonderful day as a family going to see Wall-E at the cheap theater. At the risk of sounding corny, Jon is the best husband and father and we are very blessed to have him for our own.
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Not for us! Ava and I love puzzles. I remember doing puzzles with my GG (Grandma Grace) when I was little. Ava's Nana bought this 100 piece puzzle for Jonah, and while he hasn't really been interested, Ava's been tackling it often.
Complete with Cheetos on the side.
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pumpkin Patch Kids

"Ricolaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!" (I made baby Samuel this sweater and hat and this was the first time he got to wear it)

Boo was a little grumpy that I wouldn't let her run to the farthest field...
BFF Makaena and Clara. Both so sweet and such a privilege to watch them grow together.

The four girls together (L-R: Paigey, Ava, Jolie, Audrey "Rosie")

The three boys together (L-R: Aidan, Tim, Jonah)

Our very own homeschool co-op! Gone are the days when we can all pile into two minivans... :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

New Photos

Brynne at 19 months. Nana (Louise) made the smocked sweater and bonnet--aren't they beautiful?

I love this one!

Sisters in their cute ballerina outfits!
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Ava on Herself

Yup, They Look Alike

Last night Jon and I babysat Aidan and Joshua Durias. This is a conversation I had with Joshua (nearly 3) during dinner:
Joshua (Pointing to a picture of Jonah): That Boo-Boo (Brynne)?
Me: Nope, that's Jonah.
Joshua: That Joe-Joe?
Me: Yup, he's a boy. Boo-Boo's a girl.
Joshua: Oh. (pauses, then points to the picture again) That a boy Boo-Boo?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Oh, Man

See more funny videos at Funny or Die

Yes that is applause that you hear. Brynne was dancing so funny after this video. Maybe we should go back to no dancing in churches.

My Creative Sister

My sister Jamie is one of the most creative peeps I know. She can draw well, write well, sing (well, maybe not--click here--just kidding Jam), and is a wonderful cook. She's even started a new blog with the motivation to instill the love of cooking into our children. It's called Taste Buds & Blossoms. Check back often as they are always adding new stuff and delish recipes.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Apple Tasting

The kids and I joined the Durias' for the annual Portland Nursery Apple Tasting yesterday. It's one of our favorite things to do in Portland during our favorite time of year.
Click here for photos!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Did I Miss Something. . . ?

Since I have to bring a dessert for the moms in Friday School tomorrow morning, I thought I would utilize some of the delicious D'anjou pears that are in our garage and whip up a Fresh Pear Cake.
It was looking so good. . .

But it fell (insert dum dum dum music here). . . Jon came home right as I was making it. . . and I started talking to him. . . I think I might have forgotten to put in the baking powder. . . Or maybe put in only half. Oh, well. At least Jon's not a picky eater.
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Oregon Berries in Sept

Louise planted ever bearing strawberries this past Spring and boy oh boy are they ever-bearing...this is a 2 pint container and we left some on the plants...