Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

We had a really wonderful Christmas this year! Lauren was just the right age to really enjoy all the festivities, we were able to go to our own church on Christmas Eve (which we have never done) and wake up in our own home on Christmas day. The past week has been filled with many visits with friends and family, and there are more to come!

Here are some tidbits from our morning:

Lauren setting out cookies and milk on Christmas Eve.

The next morning, cookies were nibbled and milk was drank. And Santa got the memo about the barking, tail-wagging pound puppy. ;o)

The chaos of opening presents! This was a mutual gift for the girls, so they were both happily ripping away!!!

Lauren's bouncing ball was a hit for sure!

Paige saw Lauren test out the scooter and is all about it! She just stands there and smiles, as if it is moving and SO fun!

There are a few more shots of our celebration at my Frame-A-Day site if this just wasn't enough for you! ;o)

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! We are off to #3 at my parent's house tomorrow!

Christmas Eve

All ready for Christmas Eve service!

Lauren and Camryn playing by Aunt Jen's tree

Paige just loves her cousin Travis - he cracks her UP!

The kiddos singing Happy Birthday to Jesus.

We love this holiday!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Beeler Family Christmas

It is hard to believe it has been twelve days since I last posted! Time has just gotten away from me. This past weekend we were up in Payson for the big family get-together on Justin's Dad's side, and then a smaller Christmas celebration with Justin's parents and two of his siblings and their families (we missed you terribly Ra-ra!). We all had a wonderful time and it was great to reconnect with everyone!

Lauren recited a short book that she has memorized, "Christmas in the Manger" for a skit after lunch. She did a great job - Mommy was very surprised that she was willing to perform in front of so many people!!! Papa Jody and Mommy were misty-eyed before it was all said and done.

Daddy getting a Paige snuggle.

Lauren showing off this year's Angel ornament from Grandma Nel.

Paige was happy to unwrap presents this year, the only downside was she wanted everything out of the box right away. Seriously, why do they have to use two dozen zip-ties to keep kid's toys in the box?!?

Lauren and Camryn showing off their matching Frenchy dogs from Aunt Ra-Ra. Frenchy is the dog from Fancy Nancy and Lauren LOVES her. We have read "The Posh Puppy" at least 100 times. Needless to say, Frenchy is a big hit and has slept with Lauren every night since!

Uncle Shawn and Paige having a little bonding time. (C'mon, I had to play around with Photoshop a LITTLE this week!) ;o)

The day after Christmas we are headed to Vegas for the weekend and when we return we will be off to play in the snow with some friends, so I will have a lot to share when we are finally home again! Have a very merry Christmas, everyone!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Card Out-takes

Okay, this falls under the category of if-you-don't-laugh-about-it-you'll-cry. Except maybe for me it is if-you-don't-laugh-you'll-pull-your-hair-out.

In case any of you organized types (*COUGH* Kathleen) are beginning to wonder if the Beeler's are ever going to get around to sending a Christmas card... we are trying! I submit the following as evidence:

Seriously. Whose kids are these, and why are they torturing me? I have taken over 150 shots in three days and there is ONE that is okay. I hate to send out OK pictures on cards, but no amount of photoshopping is helping these beautiful little freaks. ;o)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

One Year Old

On Sunday we celebrated Paige's first birthday! It was a wonderful time of visiting with family and friends! I was genuinely suprised to have so many people take time out of their holiday weekend to come see us - thank you to you all!!! For those of you who couldn't make it, here's the Reader's Digest Version. ;o)

A quick pose in the gift corner. Paige LOVES her chair from Grandpa Randy and Grandma Linda! She has already learned how to get in and out of it all on her own. She will take a toy and climb up in it to play.

My pretty little girl!

There wasn't a real theme to her party, so I let Lauren pick out the cupcake cake. It was a hit!

Singing happy birthday ~ she didn't freak out, but she wasn't smiling and clapping like she had during "rehearsals" all week either!

Not so sure about the frosting...

"Oh yeah, that's gooooooood!"
It didn't take her long to dive right into the cupcake. She was all about it!

How old are you, Paige?

Opening gifts - this guitar from Grandpa and Grandma Beeler was a hit!

Giving a kiss to the cow from Aunt RaRa. Gotta love the open mouth kisses!
Can't have a post with out a little Lauren thrown in! She was a super big sister and such a trooper about the day not being about her for a change! There were plenty of distractions to keep her mind off of it, though!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Paige walking!

For those of you who wanted to SEE it...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Girls update

I have been a serious slacker on the blog this week - I apologize! Maybe last week burnt me out! Either way, I thought an update on each girl was long overdue (since this is THEIR blog and all).


11 months, 19 days

I am really loving this age with Paige! She is a love - always willing to snuggle! She says "this" while pointing to things she finds interesting. Her other words include baby, ball, more, dada, dog, daisy, and today for the first time: shoes! She will not leave a bow, headband, or hat on her head for more than five seconds. She loves to eat everything, but knows when whatever YOU might be eating looks better. She loves her big sister and follows her everywhere. Peek-a-boo is a favorite pass-time, if you are looking to pass a lot of time! She blows kisses, waves bye-bye and hello, gives slobbery kisses and floppy hugs, and LOVES to laugh. If you are laughing, or pretend to laugh - she will join in and keep up with you as long as you are willing to go. She and Lauren practice this often! She is gaining more dexterity, opening and closing things and figuring out the buttons on many of Lauren's toys. She is beginning to prefer to walk, as evidenced today:

Align Right
I think she has crawled for about five minutes total today - she just totters around, very slowly - stopping often to get her balance before she would fall. I am amazed at how fast this year has gone and this sweet little girl that brings so much joy to our home!


3 years, 6 months, 6 days

There's a little vintage action on this shot because I just feel like she has quite the diva face going on -- I can almost hear, "Oh yes, I know you WANT to take my picture. Too bad for you I shall pretend not to notice."

Lauren is hysterical these days - she tries to make jokes and then will tell you that you are supposed to be laughing. And if a joke gets a laugh once, it will be repeated over and over. She loves to do crafts and play outside in the dirt. She LOVES television. If it is a cartoon, she will watch it. I have to be creative to keep her distracted in the mornings or she will just ask for more and more TV. She is going through a stage where she wants me to play with her - all.the.time. She is getting a little more dramatic to try and get attention, she hasn't figured out that it doesn't work and won't. Ever. ;o) She is learning to write her letters and numbers. She loves to make up songs and stories. She loves pink. And red, and purple. She loves anything fancy (thanks to Fancy Nancy), princessy, or sparkly. She is FINALLY wanting to do things for herself, most the time. She still loves to help me cook, but prefers to bake cookies. She loves our dog, and our dog tolerates her. When I ask her what she wants to be when she grows up, she says, "I am not going to grow up. Grown-ups don't get to play." Smart girl. And just so you don't think she is SO serious all of the time, this was taken about three seconds after the other one:

Maybe I should go play with her for a bit - for I am quite sure that if I blink too slowly, she will be 13 and want nothing to do with me!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Day Five: Inviting and giving

Happy Friday! This has been a surprisingly fun week for me - it is fun to have goals when other people are trucking along with you and blogging about it! Well, today's theme is inviting and giving. I love inviting people to my home, but feel like it is always hard to make it work - especially now that we are entering the holiday season! We are having one of Justin's co-worker's and her fiance over for dinner on Monday, so that gives me some plans to think about and work on today. I have another family I have been meaning to invite over, so I will try and plan that with them... and then there's the neighbors from down the street. So that part is covered.

After reading this goal for the day, I went to my inbox and saw a friend had sent me this. It sure got me thinking about the upcoming Christmas holiday and what it truly means to give from our home. I certainly don't want to be contributing to the useless gift pile that eventually ends up at someone's white elephant party or spring yard sale! But for some reason I tend to feel guilty for not spending money on something nice to give my friends and family. I think this falls into the area of pride, and is clearly something I need to work on! So, there will be some blogging to come on ideas for giving from our home instead of from our pocketbook... but I need a week or so to mull this over!
On to my girlies! Here is Oh-So-Proud Lauren showing off her craft from fun-day yesterday.

We did have our cocoa and cookie tea party after dinner - though Paige only participated in the cookie part! She has this new thing where she holds her hand out and opens and closes it when she wants something, as in - "Give THAT to ME." ;o) Apparently she wanted my camera...

Lauren loved the hot chocolate with marshmallows - which surprised me! I expected her to say she only wanted the marshmallows DRY - to eat them (in typical three year old picky fashion). But she was all about our little dessert party, especially since she got to use her big girl tea cups from Aunt Ra-Ra!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Day four: Making my home a haven - FUN

Last night Lauren ran to me and said, "Mommy the sky is pink and red, my favorite colors!" We went to the back door and truly, it looked like the sky was on fire! I couldn't get very good shots from my little backyard, but you'll get the idea:

Lauren loved it - she just kept going on and on! It was a sad moment when she saw it was starting to fade.

The Beeler Family Day of Fun! Now, THIS is a goal I can get behind! :o) A day to have fun with my kiddles?!? Sign me up!

Okay... it isn't as easy as it sounds. Especially since my goal to have fun also incorporated not spending money. And, aside from lunch - I managed to stick to that part of the goal.

We made breakfast together, sang songs while getting dressed, and were actually out the door on time! We had bible study this morning, so that automatically made my day fun! The lessons at class were great, and both the girls did really well in their classrooms too! My small group was meeting at a nearby park for lunch, so we picked up some yummies from Einstein's bagels (Lauren was ECSTATIC to pick her own lunch, a blueberry bagel with cream cheese) and met the other moms and kids at the park. It was a great time for kids and adults alike - there were no accidents or meltdowns, and I left feeling refreshed from friendly conversation! The girls took great naps, and now that they are getting up - we have a few more fun things to end out our day. Lauren and I will do a craft and then make dinner together, and for dessert I am planning some hot cocoa (tea party style) and cookies. What a wonderful day to feel rewarded after three days of necessary work! I can't wait to see what day five has in store!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Day Three: Making Your Home a Haven - CARED FOR

First, a little of Lauren's accomplishments for the day:

If you have a toddler/preschooler, I highly recommend the Priddy books! The writing wipes off so they can be used over and over again for tracing letters, numbers, shapes, etc! Lauren LOVES to do them, and the really good news is that the ink washes out of clothes! Guess how I know that?!? ;o)

Here's the princess in action:

Check out that tongue!!! I am still cracking up! She did the whole book this morning after breakfast, but was particularly proud of the letter L page, "Mommy, look! L! L is for LAUREN!"

Love that!

On to creating a haven from the havoc of my home! The assignment for today was to think of tasks you had been putting off doing around the house. Since I am a master procrastinator this would have made for a looooong list - so, I chose a few and am feeling pretty good for finally getting these things done! It definitely lightens your spirit and makes the house a more cheerful place to be! Things I have done today include:

  1. Mend a ripped pair of pants Justin has been asking me to sew for... well, let's just say I think we still lived in our HOUSE.

  2. Get dinner in the crock pot to free me up this evening. I have found this sort of planning is instrumental in my attitude for the night! Why is it children decide to MELT DOWN every night while I cook dinner? Then poor Justin gets to work all day only to arrive home to two crying children and an agitated wife. He is so great about it though (love you, honey!).

  3. Remove, wash, dry, and replace the bedding for all three beds.

  4. Organize all the cool-weather clothes that were unpacked and piled in the master closet. Yes, piles are my M.O. - I admit it.

  5. Clear off clutter from the top of our dresser. Seriously, I haven't been able to see the top of the thing since we moved in! Again, the piles...

  6. Sweep back porch and put away all outdoor toys. Besides Daisy, Lauren is the only one who uses our backyard (the girl LOVES rocks and bugs - which is pretty much all that is out there!), so it gets very neglected.
There are still several hours to go before Justin gets home and I am hoping to get some extra cleaning done that didn't get accomplished yesterday. I am really just praying that this will truly change my outlook on keeping up my home and I will be able to stay on top of it more than in the past. God is changing my heart about how I am spending my time - so my goal is to wean myself off the old ways and on to the new, making sure to leave a little "me-time" in the schedule as well. I am a firm believer that we can only give our best to our kids and our spouse if we still take care of us - remaining who we really are outside of mom and wife!

Happy haven-izing, everyone!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Day Two: Making My Home a Haven - CLEAN

Apparently I misunderstood yesterday, because I did quite a bit of what I would consider "cleaning" when I was supposed to be tidying up instead. Oh well!

I didn't get many great pictures that showed my tidyness accomplishments, but here are a couple:

So far, so good! Today I will be focusing on the floors, bathrooms, more laundry, and more kitchen cleaning (do those things EVER end?!?). I am hoping that tomorrow's goals don't include any chores. ;o)
I think making this about what God wants for my home is really changing my attitude about it! I am actually enjoying making my home nice and finding ways to have fun and be organized in the process. I even made a half and half dinner last night, where I cooked twice as much food during the first half to be used on dinner tonight so my life will be super easy come cooking time! Yay for THAT! Being able to deal with dinner-time madness will make my home more haven-like for sure!
The girls were more than happy to help out with the chores yesterday! I love how little ones can see cleaning as a FUN thing! Here is a "Va-va-voom" Paige helping me out with the dishes:

LOL! She just kept wiggling her arms out of this shirt yesterday! After fixing it about a dozen times, I gave up!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Making my home a haven

This week, over at The Homespun Heart they are doing a challenge that I feel we could all use in our homes - making your home a HAVEN. I am guilty of letting my home be utter chaos until a guest is coming over. One of my new goals for November is to make my home guest-worthy just for my family! It will be a big change for me, but I feel it is something God desires for my family, and for my state of heart.

So, follow along with me this week as I try to keep up with this challenge, and change the condition of my home! Today is tidy-up day, and I will have before and after pictures for you later on. I must really love and trust you all to show the before shots! ;o) Truly, I am hoping that putting this on the blog will keep me accountable this week! Here is my tidying list for the day:

Organize pantry
Tidy up all rooms
Wash laundry and PUT IT AWAY
Organize desk
Clean Kitchen
Prep for Dinner: Curry Chicken & Rice

And, just because I know you are here to see my kids more than hear about me - here's a couple more shots from a trip to the park on Saturday!

Paige and Harper enjoying the sand.

Lauren and Porter trying to resist the urge to throw sand! LOL