Sunday, November 29, 2015

Letters to Aunts & Uncles

Kinley has had a couple of very cute letters come home from school in the last couple months specifically to her aunts and uncles. 
The first one was to Bart and Olivia. 
It was a story she wrote about what she was going to do that weekend and we were headed over to their house to babysit Anson with Honey. 
Here are the pics of the story: Kinley's school work Kinley's school work 
Translation: "Tonight me and my mom and my two brothers get to go to my baby cousins house. We get to see their dog. The dog is nice. It loves to do tricks. I teach him. My aunt and uncles name is Olivia and Bart. I love my aunt and uncles house." 

And even though we had the BEST time with Anson that night and loved just hanging at Bart and Olivia's house. We played with toys, took baths together, ate pizza and all three of my kids fell asleep on the couch with Honey and I (dream come true!) the only pic I got of the entire night does not represent well. 
We waited too long! 
It was bedtime and all my kids got in Anson's crib with him to cheese it up and he was like "Get out of my bed! I am tired!" Poor guy. 
He just needs a little more time around us to get used to the chaos :) 
Kinley's school work 

The second one was a letter to Alex and Mendy right before Thanksgiving. 
I think she meant to take it to them for our Thanksgiving week at the lake but, I never checked her folder the whole break until she went back to school (Mom of the year) 

 Here is a pic: 
 Kinley's school work Kinley's school work 
Translation: "Alex, Thank you for being silly. Minnie thank you for the baby cousin of mine."

Moral of the story: If you give her cousins or have a dog that does tricks, you will get a sweet letter or story written about you at school.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

More November

Maddi had a My Little Pony birthday party and it was so fun.
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Even Dylan got in on the pony riding action!
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We had a cousin get together at David and Kristi's and for some crazy reason, this is my only picture. Kid dinner table. Can't wait for Christmas with the Howe side. I will be better about pics!
  More November 2015

 We could not wait to put on Christmas pj's from Aunt Minnie. More November 2015 We even made Anson match us (twice!)one night at Honey's house for a pre-thanksgiving Howe get together.
Kinley's school work
Dylan's new cheese face :)
Kinley's school work Kinley's school work
No success with pjs this time...good thing we still have a few Christmas get-togethers to get it right!
Kinley's school work
Shout out to cheese face on the fireplace.
Kinley's school work 

Dylan had his ear re-check with the ENT for his tubes and he is still looking good! Another follow up in six months to see if they have fallen out by then. She thinks probably so.
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He's just telling himself he is one year old.
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If picking your nose or sticking your hands down your diaper makes your tubes fall out faster then we may be in trouble. But for now, we will wait for the follow up appointment.
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 Dylan has also had an intense love for Haley. He crawls over her, pets her, chases her. Just like Kinley and Ty did at his age.
 She is the BEST, most patient dog.
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 Ben and I went to see Kinky Boots at Bass Hall. The music was all by Cindi Lauper and was fantastic.
 I love date nights with my man.
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Had to take a pic with the boots.
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 We went to the Nordells one night to visit their Thanksgiving break guests. Nibbles and Fluffy are the Guinea pig class pets in Ella's class. I think every kid wanted their own guinea pig after cuddling with these two.
More November 2015

The Fogles came in town for Thanksgiving!!!!
 It feels like old times and I LOVE it! All our kids love each other and play perfectly (and so do the parents). We all went to La Hacienda after church on Sunday and they came over Monday afternoon/evening.
 I would force them to never leave my house while they are in town if I could.
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We went to Grapevine Mills mall one day with Honey to do some Christmas shopping, food court eating and carousel riding.
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We also randomly decided to visit Santa because there was no line. I know we will see him at least one other time but, it was fun to have this picture. I can't believe how big Dylan was smiling!!

We went to look at the Christmas lights on Grapevine Main Street one night and drove thru to get some Starbucks hot chocolate on our way. More November 2015
Christmas on Main Street Christmas on Main Street
  Christmas on Main Street
Mistletoe Booth!
Christmas on Main Street Christmas on Main Street
It wasn't even planned but we ran into the Bartels up there!
 So much fun.
 Last outing with them before John Wyatt!
Christmas on Main Street Christmas on Main Street Christmas on Main Street Christmas on Main Street

 John Wyatt finally made his debut! 5 days late, after all Leslie's Thanksgiving visitors who were supposed to help her had come and gone. But, we were thrilled he waited until we were back from the lake so we could see him in the hospital!
 Loved the mumm from her shower on the hospital door. IMG_5445 More November 2015

We got into the Christmas spirit with a litle holiday decorating. More November 2015 More November 2015

And THIS really speaks life into my heart. We tell Kinley all the time we want her to know how to read really well so she can read the Bible.
 Here she is reading her Bible to Ty.
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 So excited for December festivities!

Friday, November 27, 2015

Harrison Lakehouse Thanksgiving

Gosh, I love holidays at the lakehouse. 
 It is so, so relaxing and calm and slow. I treasure it. 
 No phone, internet, tv, no real distractions. 
 Just lots of togetherness. 
 In the winter we can't even get on the water and this year, there was so much rain, we couldn't even go outside much. But, we never get bored and the 5 days/4 nights we were there still flew by. 
 We left Wednesday afternoon and got there in time to play outside a little on the swings and in the piles of leaves that the yard guy left for the kids to play in. Dylan is obsessed with being outside and swinging. 
 I love it.
  Thanksgiving 2015
Thursday was Thanksgiving and Pop's birthday. We started with a big pancake breakfast because it's his favorite. 
Thanksgiving 2015 
 We had about a half a day of daylight and no rain and my kids (and Gram) took advantage.
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I also invested in a selfie stick for the first time and we couldn't get enough.
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Kinley and Ty got to help uncle Alex prepare the turkey for thanksgiving dinner. They loved injecting it with the garlic butter. 
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They were pros helping in the kitchen this time, where we spend lots of time. They helped Alex and Gram make meringue. 
Thanksgiving 2015 
Brinkley selfie
Thanksgiving 2015
We decided to make some costumes for dinner and turned some brown paper sacs into Indian vests. 
 Aunt Minnie even made Kinley a head piece. 
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Thanksgiving dinner selfie! 
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It's not a party until Ty falls asleep on the couch in the middle of the fun. 
Thanksgiving 2015
Singing Happy Birthday to Pops 
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We spend a lot of time playing games at the lake. 
 Kinley was the perfect card dealer with her sequin visor hat. 
Thanksgiving 2015
We knew with the rain we wouldn't get to be outside much so we brought the bounce house and set it up on the screened in back porch. There was lots of jumping in the cold but, at least we weren't wet! 
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Can't handle the cuteness... Thanksgiving 2015 
never mind that he is wearing a hat with a bow on it. third child gets nothing new, even wears sister's old clothes. Thanksgiving 2015 
We do have a DVD player at the lake and watched a few movies together. Thanksgiving 2015
We even left the house one day and went to the movie theatre in town to see The Good Dinosaur and out to dinner.
 That was a first! It was fun!

 Picture theme of the week was definitely Kinley and the selfie stick.
A few more for your enjoyment.
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PS - this sweatshirt she is wearing is MINE from when I went to elementary school. True vintage straight from the back of a closet at Honey's house. Pretty cool.
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On a more serious note, this holiday season so far has been a little difficult for us.  We are going through some life changes and seasons that all families and people go through.  It has been tough but so sweet at the same time.  It has been such a great reminder to choose joy and to choose to focus on the true blessings and things we are thankful for in this life.
 Nothing fleeting or material. 
It is crazy how life can change from one minute to the next.
 The only constant is Jesus.
He is our source of joy and comfort and peace. Amidst the chaos and uncertainty, He alone is secure on His throne with purpose and direction and perfect timing.

 As a family, we are so thankful and choose joy in Him and Him alone.

 I am beyond thankful for my husband and my three kids.
 I am overwhelmed with the blessing they are to me.

 And this holiday season, I am even more over-joyed for my new soon-to-be nephew. I am absolutely in love with his future parents and couldn't be more thankful for them in our life as aunt/uncle/brother/sister.
 They are amazing and will be the BEST parents.
 Life is not easy and can be totally unpredictable.
 But, through the good and bad, we cling to each other as family and most of all cling to JESUS who sustains us and changes us with each mountain and valley.
 I am overwhelmed with thankfulness.
Here is a pic of Mendy's cute growing baby belly...but, who is that dad??
Thanksgiving 2015
Happy Thanksgiving!