Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Cousin Love

No words are necessary to describe these pictures.  This happened the other night at a little Christmas gathering at Mimi and Papa's a few days before Christmas.  Also, Scott didn't take his batman mask off the entire night.

I love these three with my whole heart and I'm so happy they have each other!

Friday, December 27, 2013

But it was Merry, Very!

I would like to start this post by saying: We did not go to the ER this year.

Now onto the festivities.  Our celebration began/continued with the annual Staves' Family Christmas Party, and this year was our year to host.  Can I get a woohooooo?!?!?!!!!!  Since we were hosting we got to choose the time and all the details (awesome for us since we have the youngest kiddos who need to be accommodated for naps and the like).  We hosted an early afternoon soiree and chose a brunch theme for the menu (because I wanted something different from the usual holiday appetizer spread that we all get at Christmas parties)

My cohost: (who did ALL the heavy lifting and rearranging)

It was a potluck which made it fun and delicious (and I feel like I had to do practically nothing to get ready for it all)

And we lucked out with perfect weather.  Our house is not large so we were planning on eating in the backyard (another reason for a day time shin dig) and the weather cooperated perfectly.  Sunny. 70s. Glorious.

Scott and Brittney. Scott asked me not to sit with them.  "I'm sitting with Brittney, just the two of us."

Owen woke up from his nap about an hour into the party.  Just in time for some food and snuggling.

Aunt Kay and Aunt Jenny

Possibly the only picture of Brian and me from the entire week (thank Aunt Kay for this, and for all the pictures…I took like 3 the whole day…whoops)

Lots of loved ones…smallish house

We are a bit out of order here but basically after we ate we opened gifts.  The littles opened theirs from everyone then the grown-ups did a gift exchange.
Brian explained this year's rules (which he made up on the fly) that you could not steal from a direct descendent. Groans commenced.  (He broke up some alliances)

Al, Christina and me

Gift exchange fun

And hilarity (TP, maxim magazines and febreeze.)

The boys each got some fun holiday shades:

Elmo robe:


"Ooooh wow"

Scott and Cody playing super hero memory game….while the super heroes look on in approval.

Scott and Brittney, hanging out like such big kids.

Owen and Uncle Taber
It was a fun night and a great way to kick off Christmas week.

The next night we went up to Mimi and Papas for another Christmas party.   I have a few pictures of the boys on my phone but haven't downloaded them…so coming soon (and I only have a few).  Monday we hung out with family some more at Uncle Rob's where we ate the most amazing BBQ crab legs and sat outside by the fire.
Christmas Eve morning Scott woke up with a nasty cough (which I could have told you was coming based on his demeanor the night before) so we laid low all day.  Stayed in our jams, watched lots of movies…it was really the perfect way to spend the day.  I roasted a chicken that night, we went for a walk with the boys in the stroller with lots of pitas and checked out the neighborhood Christmas lights, then we baked cookies (no one wanted to help…surprise surprise) for Santa.

Scott helping to lay the cookies out.  No Christmas jams?  Oh no, we had Christmas jams a plenty but why wear those if you have brand new Iron Man jams (and Captian America too).  Oh well, festive enough.

Owen eyeing the cookies and no doubt hoping for one.  Scott decided Santa needed five cookies so there seemed to plenty to spare in Owen's mind.

Owen slept until 6:30 on Christmas morning and I had quite a time keeping him out of the living room so we could let Scott sleep a little longer.  Finally we woke him up at 7:30 to let the fun begin.

"Santa" had a blast building and setting up Scott's castle the night before while wrapping gifts and watching White Christmas….

And Santa also had just enough north pole ice to make Scott a small iceman (since it was the only gift he actually asked for).  And luckily it was a hit.

Cookie crumbs and nibbled carrots….

Christmas morning surprises...

Poor Scott was still not feeling well but he didn't let that slow him down (although his smiles were less than enthusiastic)

Santa brought me a bike basket….but it looks like he should have brought me lots and lots of coffee…whoa tired look:


All toys are riding toys:

Grandma and Gpa joined us for Christmas breakfast a little later

We are still at the stage where Christmas lasts all day.  The boys were in no rush to tear through their gifts which was nice.

After Owen's nap we headed up for Christmas dinner with Mimi and Papa, Aunt Charlotte, Matt, Hilary and Parker John.

And a few more gifts….

Checking out Scott's knight in shining armor costume.  This kid still LOVES to dress up…and bonus this costume came with weapons: sword, ax and shield!

Two years ago we had Christmas dinner at Mimi and Papa's and we have a picture of all of us in this same part of their yard.  Their yard was not as pretty….oh and Scott was Owen's age and I was pregnant with Owen….many changes:

After dinner and desert (which I was simply too stuffed to eat) Aunt Charlotte busted out the peppermint pig (if you aren't familiar with this tradition everyone takes a whack at the pig and wishes for luck in the coming year…then you eat it!) and the boys went to town:

I felt particularly blessed to spend so much time with our families this holiday season and for all the memories made.  Hoping you and your families enjoyed this special and magical time of year.  Here's to a great last week of 2013.

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will towards men. - Luke 2:14