Sunday, January 10, 2016

Merry Christmas!

Our holidays were really nice this year.  The first week was a little busy but we had a little bit of time to relax the second week and that was much needed for all of us!

We started the Christmas festivities at Marlie's ballet recital where she danced to the Sugar Plum Dance from the Nutcracker. She was so beautiful and I loved every minute!
Next was Matt's choir Christmas performance. Fall Creek Elementary has a 4th grade choir. Matt wasn't sure he wanted to try to out but when he heard all of his friends were, he signed up. He was super excited when he found out he made it. The kids sang several Christmas songs and performed at a nursing home and an assisted living community (which I thought was awesome, thank you Mrs. Janes!). It was fun watching all these kids that we've known since they were in Kinder. 
We did something really special this year for Christmas and I think we would all agree that this was the best part about the season...we adopted a family. We all had so much fun shopping for a few things on their list, buying them some basic items and then a few fun surprises too. We really enjoyed meeting them and Matt & Marlie LOVED helping the kids as they opened their gifts. Before we left the Mom told me that she's not a hugger and then gave me the biggest hug. That hug helped me to keep a smile on my face through the entire holidays! Thank you to Sylvia Bowling at Aldine Family Hope Center for giving us the opportunity to do this. When we got in the car that night to come home Matt said, "Mom I have 1 word...AMAZING!" Agreed.
We also went with my bible study friends and their kids to another nursing home in the area to do some caroling. It's so fun to see the sparkle in their eyes or to see the residents singing along with you. We met the sweetest lady named Melba that asked all about my sweet little family and we told her the story of Matt's black eye. She was sharp as a tack and cute as a button!

The kid's enjoyed their Christmas parties at school and Marlie had fun at the 2nd annual gingerbread house decorating party at her friend Alaina's house!
My sweet Granny passed away at the age of 97. The first weekend of Christmas break we headed to Laredo to celebrate her life. Although it was sad, it was so nice to see family. A huge thank you to Ms. Aurora who took such good care of Granny the past several years. She has the funniest stories of how feisty Granny was and the funny things she said. I wish I would have written a few of them down. The one I remember is how Granny would try to nicely kick her out by giving her money for the bus and telling her to go spend time with her family. Aurora said she would smile and say thank you, walk around the house, come back and knock on the door and Granny would welcome her in like she hadn't seen her in years. I wonder how many times sweet Aurora had to pull this trick out of her bag?!?! We all wore Granny's favorite color pink to the funeral. The boys wore their jeans and boots with pink ties!
We got to see my cousin's 2 girls that I hadn't met before and they were adorable! Marlie really enjoyed hanging out with them.
The kids stayed in Laredo for a few days with Nene and Uncle Jay since Doug and I had to come back to work. They took M&M to the ranch fully decked in camo gear! Matt and Marlie really enjoyed looking for animals and eating tamales that Uncle Tony cooked on the grill. 
I love Christmas at home so we had our usual festivities at our house. As always, the kids loved the annual gift card exchange and they enjoyed preparing and performing a guitar recital for our family. I guess I had so much fun that I didn't take any pictures! Santa came Christmas morning and the kids were thrilled! Matt got a new guitar, several jerseys that he asked Santa for and stacking cups (crazy you may have to google that one).  Marlie was beyond excited with the stuffed animal sheep he brought for her (although her list specifically requested a real one).  She also got a new bike!
The kids decorated gingerbread houses with Papa and Nona Lisa. The boys and Marlie always peter out after doing the roof. Nona Lisa typically finishes Marlie's and then Papa feels like he has to step up his game for the boy's house. LOL! They both turned out cute!
Marlie also worked diligently on making a potholder. This was a present from Papa and Nona Lisa and she loved it...although it wasn't easy and she did get pretty frustrated once or twice! It turned out really cute and she's already started another one!
The next day we headed to San Antonio to visit the rest of the family. We stayed on the Riverwalk with big plans to check out all the lights on the river...that never happened. We only managed one tourist picture by the tree at the hotel!
Matt and Tim were excited that they got matching bats! Gram bought all the kids hoverboards and we had so many laughs trying to ride them. It's not as easy as it looks (or maybe I'm just old)! I almost fell getting on and getting off and barely moved while I was on! Thank you Ash for helping me! Sam and Lauren had to help Doug. If he would have fallen I bet he would have taken them down with him! You might guess which of us took a dive on the hoverboards...Matt thought he had figured it out and apparently was flying down the hill when the hoverboard stopped because he was going too fast and he supermaned on the street! Thankfully he just beat up his elbows and knees and didn't go face first!
We got to visit the Hatters too on our trip and we always enjoy being with their family even if it's just quick. Shawn gave us a tour of the Pearl development he has been working on for several years. It's absolutely gorgeous and maybe someday Doug and I can stay at the beautiful Hotel Emma!! 
  Apparently these kid's parents aren't entertaining!
 We were pretty exhausted by the time we got home.  We rung in the new year cuddled up in my bed with our pjs on. I wouldn't have wanted it any other way! Happy New Year! Here's to 2016!!

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Fall Sports!!

The kids have kicked off their sports for the year and we are excited to get in full swing! Marlie has competed her solo in 2 competitions already.  Both were really early in the season and she wasn't quite ready but she did her best, had a great smile and we were so proud!
Matt has only had 2 baseball tournaments. The first one they did great and ended up losing the second game on Sunday by one run. The second tournament Matt played 1/2 an inning. His first at bat, he fouled the ball right back at his own eye!! I'm not sure I've ever seen that happen. Thankfully there were no broken bones and there was no eye damage.  But it looked bad for several days and it wasn't fun having to show up at school looking like this...
It was swollen shut for the first 4 days.  The above pics were taken the morning of each new day.  Thankfully we are almost fully recovered!
Matt has also started flag football.  All of his friends are on his team and the boys are having a blast.  They won their first game 54-0 and the second game 24-0.  Matt is loving playing defense and has 2 pick 6's already! More news to come from the Broncos!