Thursday, December 24, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 24

Christmas Traditions - Christmas Eve

We are hosting Christmas lunch for Craigs family at our house tomorrow, so much of today was spent cleaning and preparing. I like to get the table set up and ready to go today. Its nice to have at least that out of the way so I can sit and enjoy a little time with the kids in the morning.
Here is what it looks like this year...

Christmas Eve is always spent with Craigs family. We attend the Christmas Eve service at church. It is primarily presented by the children, and Nathan was the only one of ours involved this year. The kids all did a fantastic job! (so did Jo, Margie, Jayne and their band of helpers who organised them all!). It is then back to his parents place to open presents.

When we get home, the kids leave out a milk for Santa and a carrot for the reindeer, and put their stockings out on the floor,

then get in their new PJs ( Isaac was the only one who actually got brand new ones this year!) and then off to bed. Caleb and Nathan helped Craig wrap my pressies, and then were very excited to help with the Santa duties of drinking the milk and putting away the carrot, before heading off to bed. Once everyone was tucked up safely, I collect up the stockings and deliver the presents. A couple of quick photos and I should be off to bed too!

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas day tomorrow, surrounded by the love of your family and friends and the peace and joy of Christmas.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 23

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 22

A Christmas Tradition

Just about every year since Caleb was born in 1997 we have been a part of the local living nativity . Each night during our local Christmas lights festival local people volunteer there time to present the Christmas story twice a night. Each of our children have taken a turn to play baby Jesus the year they were born, and Craig and I were Mary and Joseph. This photo is from last year when Jacinta was baby Jesus, we were Mary and Joseph, Isaac was an angel, and Caleb & Nathan were Shepards.

Caleb & Nathan were both Shepards last Sunday, and tonight Nathan was in it again. I was very excited as my friend Nell was Mary, and the gorgeous three week old Madeline was baby Jesus. I was just going along to watch, but they needed another pair of adult hands as a Shepard, so I was in it too. It was the first time I had played anything but Mary, and I really enjoyed it! I looked after a sheep, and Nells little boy Daniel (who was the cutest little Shepard - you can just see him & I to the left of the photo) her oldest daughter Hannah was also in it as an angel, as were my sisters three -Jess, Luke & Riley - as you can tell, its often a real family affair!

Monday, December 21, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 21

Presents, Baking and a Celebration

Today I had a lovely postbag full of little gifts arrive on my doorstep.
It was a secret Santa that I was in with my Feb 08 Mums - thanks so much SS, I loved my gifts and the kids were all thrilled to get a little something as well. Caleb commented that "she (my SS) was really nice to send things for us all" - I couldn't agree more! Jazz loves her book, the boys devoured their chocolates, I love my little monogrammed note book and I'm pacing myself through the extremely delicious truffles in the gorgeous teal and red box! A little more baking this morning - a rhubarb, apple & peach crumble - it was YUMMMMMMMY!

And last, but definitely not least - a big Happy 65th Birthday to my Dad (***waving*** Hi Dad - he always reads my blog ) for yesterday. ....only two more days until he retires!!!!!! and let me tell you, he is more than a little excited about that prospect!

Of course a birthday celebration isn't complete with out friends and family, a delicious BBQ (ably cooked by the son-in-laws) and my Mums chocolate cake. Turning two in a couple of months is gong to be lots of fun for Jacinta, two of her favourite things are cake and candles - VERY, VERY exciting...and did I mention messy......and lots of other yummy goodies!!! I made mini pavlovas with cream and strawberries, Vic made chocolate ripple cakes and Jode made her first ever Croquembouche - it looked awesome and tasted pretty good too.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 20

2009 Favourite Photos

For many years I shared my favourite 10 scrapbooking layouts at the end of each year, but sadly this year I would even have done 10 to choose from. My creative urges have taken me in different directions...I'm OK with that - maybe one day I will venture back again!

2009 has seen me focus on trying to develop my photography skills. I'm still very much learning the basics of being able to take shots on the manual settings, and enjoying playing around with photoshop editing etc. I still have a long way to go, but here are my favourite 15 (I couldn't narrow it down to 10!) snaps from 2009 (in no particular order)....

Saturday, December 19, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 19

Its a busy time of year

Craig and I went to a Christmas function last night. We called in a few favours and all the kids headed off for sleep overs at various friends and family (thanks everyone!). I guess that's one of the draw backs of having a larger family, its much more difficult to get someone to look after all four at once, especially overnight. Usually its one or the other of us with meetings or a dinner and the other will stay home and look after the kids, so last night was a bit of a treat!

Isaac seemed a little tired this afternoon. I didn't think much of it when I took these photos. His day sleep has become an occasional luxury for me over the past 6 weeks or so, he slept in Georgias room last night and it took them a while to get off to sleep, and we have had a couple of busy weeks.
He was outside 'helping' Daddy, when I saw him laying on the bench under the pergola. He didn't want to go and hop in bed, so I bought the bed to him. He napped here on and off, then on the lounge inside while we de-spider webbed, swept, washed and cleaned the outdoor area. While I was finishing up Craig popped a DVD on the portable player for him, he wanted to watch it in bed. He fell back asleep watching it and is still sleeping now, he didn't wake for tea, and when we popped him into his PJs, he rolled over and went back to sleep.

The 'awwww, isnt that cute' moment of him napping on the bench has now turned to the niggling thought - is he coming down with something? Only time will tell...we are generally a pretty healthy family, but the kids are notorious for getting 'sick' right on their birthdays, or the day before we go away somewhere. Lets say a little prayer tonight and keep everything crossed that Christmas will be happy and healthy, especially for my little man!

PS - Nathan and I did end up making the lemon butter, and it is delicious. The people Nathan stayed with last night was where we got the lemons. I had given them a bottle of lemon cordial and a jar of lemon butter to say Thank You. The boys had lemon butter on pancakes this morning - the verdict - VERY YUMMY!

PSS - Remember the gorgeous bump that I got to take some photos of a few weeks back? My friend Nell welcomed little Madeline the world just six days later. Yesterday I was thrilled to go and meet her (and take some newborn photos) - she is just beautiful - Congratulations!

PSSS - this is the last one, promise!

Thank You to my lovely (and extremely talented, inspiring and creative) friend Kathie who has passed on a creative blogger award to me. (Check out her blog and see the people I'm listed with - I felt a little bit creatively underdressed being mentioned in that list I can tell you!!!)

As part of this, I have to tell you 7 things about myself that you don't know. so here goes...
1. I bite my nails - I can (and have) grow them for special occasions, and yet I still bite them.
2. I have a Bachelor of Teaching - Early Childhood Education
3. I had a knee reconstruction after I snapped my cruciate ligament netball training.
4. I don't like olives - they smell and taste Yucky!
5. I had never moved house, until I got married.
6. I like lemon flavoured lollies.
7. My first car was a mini

Now I need to forward the love to 7 other people, whose blogs inspire me - I thought I would pass this on to a random selection of the eb newbie quilters girls, many of them are also part of the advent blog-a-long - lots of inspiration every day!


Friday, December 18, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 18

The colours of Christmas

How about some Red & White Christmassy inspiration from etsy

- so many things that inspire !

Thursday, December 17, 2009

2009 Advent blog-a-long | day 17

Edible Christmas Trees

I saw these Christmas trees on a friends face book page and loved the idea.(Thanks Nat) Last night after dinner we tried them out.

Jazz is a bit young to grasp the concept of using sweet yummy treats to create something with.

I iced her cone,
she had a try at putting a couple of decorations on it, but was much more interested in picking off the chocolates and eating them, and spreading the sweet, sticky icing all over herself and the table!

Isaac enjoyed putting decorations on his - he didn't like the idea of getting fingers covered in icing though, so he was very careful!
all finished - and that apparently is a happy smile! Time to eat it!

Nathan meticulously placed the decorations onto his tree, gradually working his way around and following the pattern - so Nathan!
His finished masterpiece. The taste test - he started on the one Caleb had decided he didn't want to finish making, and then moved onto his!