Thursday, January 28, 2010

Little artists.

I should have known. They were being too quiet while I was making dinner. Parker and Evan colored all over Evan with permanent marker. Fantastic.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Des premiers etaps

So, I took advantage of Evan's nap in a different way than usual today...
We love buying Costco rotisserie chickens, and have decided to get every scrap of use out of them we can, to justify my laziness in not wanting to cook the night we buy them! We get a few meals out of the chicken, then I make chicken salad with the rest. The best part though, I think, is making stock with the rest of the carcass.

First thing this morning, I popped the sorry looking chicken bones in the crock pot with veggies and herbs, and let it simmer to deliciousness all day. Then, during Evan's nap I made homemade French bread, chopped all the veggies for the soup, made some chocolate brownies with white chocolate chips and some of our leftover candycanes, and did the dishes. Evan woke up right as I finished forming the loaves and set them aside to rise for the last time. Then, we made our own egg noodles (thanks Mom for being a good instructor!) and cooked up some chicken.

So, When Thomas got home today, we had homemade chicken noodle soup, fresh French bread, and then yummy brownies for dessert. And, what made everything taste even better: I made it all myself! Fantastic. The bread was amazing... kinda ugly on the outside, but it'll be better next time. You can't beat the flavor though! We're having a lot of fun learning to make lots of new things. And, what's funny, Evan prefers homemade bread and noodles to store-bought. There's nothing like the silence of a family eating a meal that is so yummy they can't take a break to talk.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Making Snowmen... "Playid in da 'no!"

Parker had so much fun helping Daddy and Mommy make a snowman. I think our total so far this winter is four... considering that's two for each snowfall, that's not bad!

Evan helped too!

Brothers. Parker likes to throw snowballs... and Evan got it right in the face. Poor baby. He took it well... better than Parker would have!
The finished project!
The Monday after Christmas, we decided to go up to Temple Square in Salt Lake to see the lights for our Family Home Evening activity. We took my youngest two step-siblings, Brooke and Tanner, with us. Since the truck was the only vehicle that would seat all of us, and we knew it would be impossible to park in Salt Lake, we drove up to Sandy, and then took the Trax the rest of the way. Parker thought it was great, and talked for days after about riding the train and seeing the lights. Thomas took this picture of the temple which turned out really neat. The mist is actually the condensation of his breath in the cold air... but it looks cool! He actually held his breath for the other pics he took :)
The boys were exhausted after their trip in truck and train, and crashed on the floor of the living room while we went to get them pajamas and clean diapers.
All tuckered out in the car... I mean truck.
Parker and Brooke listening to her i-pod on the train. Parker was wearing Daddy's hat at that point in time. I love his sweater... we got Parker and Evan matching sweaters for Christmas back in October, and I've been so impatient to have them wear them!!
All of us in front of the temple. I love how friendly people are; we just stopped some random people and asked them to take our picture. Back row: Tanner, Theresa, Brooke, front, Evan and Parker in the stroller, then Daddy next to them.
Tanner and Brooke, with a great angle of the lights and the temple in the background. Thomas spent several minutes trying to get the angle just right to capture our experience a little bit.
Another of Thomas' spectacular shots. The lights all around the temple are beautiful, but I love how the temple itself is so majestic and outshines all of the lights with its majesty and brilliance. It doesn't need the lights or any accessories to add to its beauty. It's the Lord's house, and that feeling is obvious when you are near it. The lights are pretty, and a wonderful celebration of the Savior's birth, but the temple is the true and best monument to the Savior's life and purpose. How grateful I am to a loving Heavenly Father who has created such a beautiful plan of redemption for us, and allowed us to know all about it.
Parker and Evan loved seeing the Christus, but were also interested in the cute little girl who was also there!
Evan learned a new word that night! After seeing the Cristus and all of the paintings of the Savior, Evan learned to say "Jesus." Now he loves looking at pictures of the Savior and pointing out Jesus.
The boys in the stroller with Uncle Tanner. He was so helpful with them! It was COLD! That's why they are all bundled up with gloves, hats, scarves, and blankets! They didn't complain about being cold, so I think they were ok. Parker loved the lights. He kept pointing to them, and talking about everything he saw. So fun.
Trax on the way up. I think we spent more time traveling to and from Temple Square than we actually spent there!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Christmas Day!

We had a great Christmas. By the way, sorry the pics are all in reverse order; I was too lazy to sort through and plan and put them in the right order... Anyway, this is a pic of Evan with one of his favorite of his presents, and his favorite of my presents... he love Elmo, and putting clothes on his head. So, he put mommy's new Elmo pajama pants on his head. (Mom and Mike gave Brooke, Kristi, and me matching Elmo pjs...)
Parker with his train from Uncle Jonathan and Aunt Amanda. He played with it constantly for a week. He still likes it a lot, we just put it away at night now :)
Opening presents! I think Parker ended up opening just about all of our presents. He had so much fun!
Our little Christmas tree with all its presents. Thank you so much to aunts, uncles, and grandparents who made such a generous Christmas possible for our kids! We couldn't have done it without you!
The Palfreyman's had a party the Saturday before Christmas, and invited Santa to attend. Parker went with Grandma and Grandpa, since Mommy and Daddy had the flu. Yuck. But, we're all better, and he had a lot of fun with his cousins and, of course, with Santa.

Christmas Eve

Parker getting the plate of cookies ready for Santa. He thought it was pretty neat how Santa ate some bites out of the cookies!
Evan scratched a scab off his nose Christmas Eve night after his bath, and so he has that lovely Elmo bandaid across his nose in all of our pics. Notice, he's eating the cookie that Parker and Brooke decorated for him... Parker insisted that Brooke write "Baby" and not "Evan" on the cookie.
The boys were checking their stockings every few minutes after Parker hung them up.
Voila the fantastic stocking that Thomas, yes Thomas, made. He did such a great job!
Aunt Brooke and Parker decorated cookies for Santa... and the rest of us... to enjoy!
"P" for Parker. Parker had Brooke do a cookie for just about everyone.

We had a fun Christmas Eve. I think Christmas Eve is my favorite holiday. Probably because we focus more on the Savior during Christmas Eve than we do on Christmas. We had fun making cookies, and playing with Mike's kids. After the boys' bath, we had everyone come downstairs, and we read the Christmas story from Helaman 15, Samuel's prophecies about Christ's birth, 3 Nephi 1, and of course Luke 2. It brought such a sweet Spirit to read the prophecies and events surrounding our Savior's birth. We had family prayer, and then read "The Night Before Christmas" and hung up the stockings and put the boys in bed!

Decorating for Christmas

We all helped Grandma (my mom) decorate for Christmas. She got everything all done and set up before Grandpa Mike got home. The boys had a lot of fun helping. Well, Parker had fun helping, and Evan had fun trying to get the ornaments and lights!

And, of course, there's our little tree. It was convenient to have it high off the ground to keep the boys away from it :) Notice the fantastic star at the top of our tree? It's our family tradition to make our tree topper every year. This year's was created from a cereal box, some tape, homemade paper mache and grocery adds, and a bit of gold paint. Fantastic :)