Friday, December 26, 2008

The Day After

I was excited to post about our day-after-Christmas trip to IKEA, but I've been putting it off because I didn't bring my camera that day (what fun is a blog post w/o pictures?).  But in my mind a trip anywhere with 20 Bennetts/Allens/Stinchfields/Wilmores is a trip to remember in blog land.  IKEA is a great place (see here if you don't know anything about it) and kid-friendly to the extreme.  We ate at the cafe (again imagine 20 of us), dumped 8 out of 15 kids into the free kid care area, and strolled around for an hour of shopping/daydreaming bliss.  I was this close to buying an embroidered pillow case, but Cory took a picture on his phone instead:

Isn't it beautiful. I plan to make my own--and like my Grandma says "I'll sell all I can make".  In fact, I'm craving a crafting project.  It probably has a lot to do with being away from home for an entire month and wanting to get back to my nest.   I've decided to copy my buddy Maren and her "Food of the Month 2009" blog project.  Every month in 2009 I hope to make a different kind of homemade bread and blog about it.  I'm excited.  I think I'll start here: Dutch Oven Crusty Bread

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Eve & Christmas Day

Christmas Eve dinner at Grandma Danna's and Pa's.  14 adults and 15 kids.
Pa's delicious turkey.
Little angels getting ready for the nativity performance.
Geof.'s gift from Adam.  The sleeping bag rated to 80 degrees or higher.
Cole and Tristan dig through their stockings.

All worn out from Christmas morning fun.
This was one of my favorite Christmas moments.  I don't think we've seen the sun for about two weeks.  Yesterday it appeared for about 30 minutes.  We all rushed outside and it was absolutely wonderful!
Ellynn's favorite stocking stuffer, baby Finn.
Geof. brings out Darla's birthday pie so we can all sing to her (just a few days late).

Monday, December 22, 2008

Fondue's & Fondon'ts

A Fon-do = keep Jason in charge of cheese stirring. Look at those mad skills.
Fon-do = have lots of fun people at your fondue party.
Fon-don't = Wearing long sweater sleeves which drag into fondue pots.
Fon-don't = Using fingers instead of fondue poker thing.
Fon-do = Celebrating your 30th birthday with family and fondue. Happy Birthday, Darla!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Gingerbread Houses

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Let It Snow

Yesterday was a true blue snow day. Schools were cancelled, roads were dangerous, and the sledding was perfect. We went out to Amboy where the snow was powdery and deep. Here are a few pics:
Bennett tries to pull Tristan and Hazel in the wagon while Kaia waits her turn.
Geof. and Darla point out their sledding route.
The hill on the Allen's property in Amboy.

After a fun day in the snow, Cory's mom made us all hot chocolate.  Kaia and Hazel took it nice and easy in the recliner by the fire place out in the shop.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Multnomah Falls

We took a short trip out to the beautiful Multnomah Falls to visit our friends the Fairhursts. We even got to eat at the lodge there (best Eggs Benedict I've ever had!).
Adam, Kaia, Chloe, Tristan, Sierra, Ashton, Kevin & baby Olivia.
Heidi ran up to the bridge with the "older" kids.
Extreme close-up.

Tristan loves to run any time his feet hit the ground.

Kaia has set the record for whining lately. I thought I'd record it for posterity and try and get some humor out of it.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Bloggity Behind

Whew.  I've been trying to get this blog on for days, but Internet has been down here in the crowded house (have I mentioned that we are staying at Adam's parent's house where six children, six adults and two sister missionaries are living together in happy harmony?).  After a plethora of hours on the phone with Quest, good o' Pa got the wireless wonder up and running again.  So let me try and play catch up with some pictures:
Last Friday (geez a whole week ago) we went to a Nativity Display at a Stake Center.  They boasted having over 600 nativities, many of which were probably priceless possessions to their owners.  Needless to say it was slightly stressful taking six small children to view said nativities.  But there was a children's room with soft, hands-on nativities and costumes and stories. 
Cole and Sierra tried their very best to obey the many "Please Don't Touch" signs.
Kaia and Dayne were less aware of the many "Please Don't Touch" signs.
My angels.

At one point I had to pile kids into the car and get to the park as fast as possible.  It was too much having them all in the house on a beautiful day.  They had a great time at this park, until they started fighting.  I piled them all back into the car and thought to myself "Hey, I heard Adam say that he wanted to wash the car yesterday.  Kids like the car wash.  I'll go there."  Which would have been a great idea except Dayne would rather have all her teeth pulled out than drive through such a scary contraption and Adam had already washed the car that morning.  Yep, I'll never forget the look on his face when I proudly told him that I washed the car.  "Didn't you notice that it was already clean?" he asked in disbelief.  So we forked out $17 on the car wash that day and the rain poured down on our very clean car the very next day. 
Another Christmas activity at the church last Saturday.
Church doesn't start until 3 p.m. so we took a reverent walk in the rain to Lucia Falls.

Friday, December 5, 2008


We left on Wednesday morning for our epic vacation to Battle Ground, Washington.  We make the 12 hour drive from Denver to Boise with very few problems.  We got to stay with Chad, Wendy and Ethan Bernards that night.  It was wonderful to see them again and the kids had a lot of fun playing together.  We left Boise yesterday and had another good ride.  The kids watched movies and ate a lot of snacks (wonderful treats provided by Gram) and Adam and I listened to "Angels and Demons" by Dan Brown on cd.

How did parents survive road trips before DVD players?
Pa reading stories to Sierra, Kaia, Dayne and Cole on our first night here.
Tristan and Finn.  Adam's youngest sister Ellynn just gave birth to baby Finn on Wednesday.

Breakfast made by uncle Adam: Mickey Mouse pancakes.  The kids must have eaten 5 each.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Closest Thing To Heaven...

"The closest thing to heaven on this planet anywhere, is a quiet Christmas morning in the Colorado snow." --John Denver

All the sudden, it feels like Christmas.  It could be that Gram invited us over yesterday to decorate Christmas cookies and help decorate their Christmas tree (then we watched "Elf").  Then it started to snow and when we woke up this morning there was a beautiful blanket of snow everywhere.  I couldn't wait for the kids to wake up so we could get out there to play.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Day

Here my girls are, all dressed up in their Thanksgiving best. Somehow I was able to get rolls and green bean casserole made, kids all dressed and out the door to aunt Kathie's on time. Even though Adam's ribs were severely hurt during the morning's Turkey Flag Football game and he spent most the day on the couch entirely useless (how could I help but be slightly grumpy about that, but I got over it and now I feel sorry that he got hurt).

My aunt Jane and her three kids: Sarah, Lindsie and Ryan. Ryan is in the Navy and it was a big surprise to have him home for Thanksgiving. They picked him up from the airport and came over to my house. It was about 1:30 and I was trying to get all the kids down for a nap. All the sudden the doorbell rings and someone is pounding on my door. I open it and there stands handsome Ryan in uniform. I gave him a big hug and said if it would have been anyone else they would have been seriously scolded for waking up all my kids. But Kaia and Tristan ended up with a nap anyway and all were fairly well behaved at the party.

They were taking group pictures and Sierra wanted to join in. This is her photo. She moved so much her subjects didn't know if they should squat down or stand straight. Pretty funny.  Pictured: Greg, Scott, Ryan, Aunt Kathie, Kaia, Lindsie and Sarah.

Sierra made her Turkey hat in Kindergarten and was kind enough to make a replica so that Kaia could have one too!