Thursday, December 8, 2016


Final presents! I love drawing! 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016


Today we grabbed friends and went to the zoo for a few hours before the city traffic started. It was so nice to walk around that nearly empty zoo and let the kids release all that energy from the rainy day yesterday. And I must say, I love otters! Their little chirps, faces and playful ways have me smiling and loving them!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016


Lights! Lights start with L! We all had a good time at preschool for the art, the friends, the play, the entertainment and the shoes :).

Monday, December 5, 2016


I have been baking up a storm the past few days! We decided our focus in treats and caroling this year would be for our neighbors. Sure we treated a few friends outside the community too, but very few. We have really enjoyed this community and it will be sad to leave it. Such wonderful people here. So we bundled up and sang and treated for our family home evening on a Monday night. I love this time of year!

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Mission Dudes

This Sunday was big. Mila got to wear her Christmas dress from Nana! Ben and I got our new callings in our new Ward at church (I'm first counselor in the primary presidency and Ben is the 12 year old teacher/ scout master assistant). And then we had Ben's friends from his mission in Russia (over a decade ago) come over with their families for a pizza dinner. We had 10 kids and 6 adults in our little townhouse and we were thrilled we got everyone! We used the shift method at the table :). We heard stories, saw pictures and had a great time talking to each other. By the end of the night we were good and tired! ;)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

A Day With Her

My little girl is such a gift. These toddler years are so entertaining, for good mostly. :) Her busy-ness keeps me giggling and her out going charm makes me smile. She shares her love so freely and she brings joy to many. Oh how I love her!!

More Goodness

Ezra went to a friend's minion birthday party today and we made him this mask for his gift. :)
I am really having a fun time making these animal masks. I think that is pretty obvious. There are so many possibilities of play with these and I love the challenge of making them. I made some masks for our cousins birthday and the prong horn that Liam loves for his Christmas gift. I can hardly wait to see my kids play with them!

Friday, December 2, 2016

Friday Fieldtrip- Flight Trampoline Park

We have heard about Flight Trampoline park a handful of times. Every time we were invited to go it didn't work with our schedule or our budget was too tight that week. Yet Friday morning, as I was contemplating what we should do for our field trip, there seemed to be only one option. 
We signed away our lives at the waiver station, got some super sticky socks and jumped like crazy for one whole hour of bliss! 

I need to add some videos of Ezra working his jump magic! He is awesome! Soon!

Then we went to chick-fil-a for lunch and had a good nap in the afternoon! Liam said this was the best field trip yet! :)

Wednesday, November 30, 2016


Our home school group (four different families) met again on Wednesday. Such a fun group of all boys! 

We had a science project discussing the properties of yeast and, needless to say, everyone loved it! 

I got to do art with the group. I chose to teach about Antoni Gaudi of Spain and his amazing architecture! We made organic looking paper houses with paper mosaics! It was neat to see what the kids came up with! 

We are excited for next time!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016


It is our turn to host preschool this month! I have been so excited for our turn and trying my best to be patient! I love preschool! This week we worked on the letter K. We made kangaroos from K, kicked balls at cups, read the Kissing Hand (and some) and played a whole lot!

During snack time my Liam was the ring leader of silliness. He was putting his cup on his head and then everyone wanted to do the same. There were a handful of spills, but Mila's was the biggest dump. Oopey, she said. I told her to show me how it happened in the picture and this is what she did. Haha!

In the afternoon I had a lovely time making up some owl masks for another friend from Ezra's preschool group last year whose mama is expecting their third baby. She may not need necessities, but good play is always appreciated so a mama can rest!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Christmas Ornaments

Our stake and surrounding stakes have had some big changes. For years there has been talk of realigning ward boundaries (some buildings were getting crowded and others not very full), but the issue of people moving and populations increasing in various areas in northern Virginia was greater than just a single stake matter. So the stakes got together and last Sunday they announced that we would be changing boundaries. My little family has now found ourselves in a new Ward! So Sunday we went to our new Ward and met new people and gave hugs to our old Ward members who shifted over with us. 

We consider this a great time to serve and help others adjust and make the Sunday system work. Each State Department assignment is about two years long, just like missions for our church are two years long. So we consider each posting like a family mission and a time for us to share our skills, love and talents to build up those around us. In turn we get to be enriched from all the wonderful friends we meet. We meet so many people and so we feel we get the greatest benefit in the end :). Church was exciting and we got new callings! Next week at church it will be announced and we will get serving in our auxillaries.

After church (we meet at a new time now-early morning instead of evening!! Yes!) we had lunch, got Mila a nap and then got out Christmas decorations!! I love going through these! Benjiman's mom put together boxes of ornaments for each of her seven children. One ornament a year so that they could have ornaments on their trees when they moved out on their own. We don't always put ben's childhood ornaments out because I am doing the same thing as my mother in law did and am collecting ornaments for my kids each year (I like themes of a trip, a country token, a neat event). Well we thought it best to document these ornaments with all their years on them and then do some cleaning out to make space for growth. (Ben wanted to do this years ago, but I said he couldn't.) We are getting very excited around here and now that the tree is up Mila can take down ornaments and scatter them around the house. (Not fun for me! But such is Christmas time!)

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Great Falls Climbing

We like action packed five day weekends. It keeps us from going crazy and still liking each other by the end of our holiday time. :) Today we grabbed our new friends the S family and went climbing at Great Falls park. We climbed for hours and enjoyed the beautiful weather today. There was a chill, but not too cold yet! Another list of things to be grateful for: clean air, beautiful parks, recreational supplies, friends to play with, a fun family to live with, healthy bodies, clothes to keep us warm, safety. The list goes on, but those are most on my list today

Friday, November 25, 2016

Mount Vernon

I haven't seen Mount Vernon since my 8th grade Washington DC trip. It was amazing to see it again 20 years later and remember things about it and see what they have modernized in the visitor centers. I loved seeing my babies experience this historic, beautiful place today!

We had a neat time period actor come and tell us stories on the porch of Washington's mansion. What a fun experience that was! The boys were excited to get a picture with him, but Mila hung back. Then she ran up after the boys moved away. She wanted her very own picture with him! This girl!!

We ate our lunch leftover turkey and cranberry sandwiches in the food court. I was so glad we brought our feast with us because if I ate the food court food and knew those leftovers were just waiting to be savored and enjoyed all day it might have ruined my focus on the good day.

Christmas festivities were starting at Mount Vernon and we got to see a demonstration on how people of the time period would have made drinking chocolate. It was thick, well spiced and even had a dash of red pepper in it! Ben and I enjoyed it so much we bought a box of the mixture!
These warmed my heart. Awesome.
Washington's tomb
The honorific memorial to slaves in the area that they would have been buried.
The innovative green house that Ben and I found fascinating!

So much to be grateful for! A free country! Fore fathers who had ethics, morals, righteous desires, and worked hard to make a great country. Beautiful history to experience! Delicious food to eat with family. Impressive things to see that are very close by. A holiday season that ought to help us focus our attention on what is most important in life.