Wednesday, December 15, 2010


We were so excited to have the time to take the kids to see Santa this year.  I'm not sure why, but as soon as I saw the Jolly Old Man himself I got so excited I actually skipped for a step!  The kids did so great waiting their turn, were happy to hand Santa their wish lists, and all loved their time with him.  Afterwards we had our traditional family dinner out - although Culvers is as fancy as we get these days :)  The kids had so much fun and so did Matt and I!

Waiting in line

The kids were invited to check out Santa's chair when he went to "go feed his reindeer"

It was very clear Santa had no clue what Caleb was talking about

Jadyn just checked him out.

After the kids left his lap, Jadyn went back for more, arms extended for Santa to pick her up

Monday, December 6, 2010

Christmas Tree!

Popas know how to get the job done!  Matt's schedule has been especially crazy this month and I was starting to feel really badly for the kids that they may not be able to get to do all of our "favorites" in preparation for the holidays.  After checking the calendar and agreeing to "do what it takes" Matt and I decided that we were going to let things slide and do what it took to squeeze in our memories.  So ... late one Sunday after Matt had worked the whole weekend, we literally ran to the tree farm.  We checked out a new one, not sure how we'd like it but we were thrilled with the results!  Once we got there we literally had 43 minutes to bundle up, find a tree, strap it to the car and get back on the road to head to the next commitment.  I was definitely feeling anxious the entire time, hating the rush of it all, but the kids didn't notice a bit.  In the end, this new place wound up being a blessing because they had a tractor (pulled by Santa) that drove us to our desired tree lot and brought us and the tree back to be roped up and paid for.  This definitely helped save a ton of time!  We were blown away when we were dropped off to find that ALL of the trees were beautiful!  We didn't have to go far at all to find the perfect tree :)  Later that week we let the kids stay up late for Matt to get home and then decorated the tree.  It was 11:30 when all was said and done but we did it :)  Another fun time had by all.

Jadyn got a sweet ride thanks to the loaner from my friend

Caleb, like his daddy, was a little eager to cut

We found it!

Warming up
Time to decorate

Everyone wanted to cut the string

The kids took over - garland and all.  Caleb's technique involved throwing it at high as he could

Just a little knot in here

The kids had a "focus" area.  Apparently Avery thought three ugly bulbs on one branch was sufficient

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Gearing Up for Christmas

Our church MOPS program hosted a fundraiser this weekend - a Christmas Workshop - where the kids had the opportunity to make some crafts for the holidays, decorate cookies, and get excited for the Christmas season.  It was a tad daunting since Matt was supposed to join us but wound up working last minute, but we managed rather well.  Craftiness is nowhere in the Popa/Gray gene-pool, so I wasn't sure how to guide three little ones into creativity whilst keeping track of Jadyn, but the event was so well staffed with "helpers" that my kids didn't really need much of my assistance at all.  It was a very fun, festive start to the season.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

December Randoms

Avery's new dress up outfit

Jadyn's buddy/twin Jacob

Working out her ABC's
J's Cheese-Face
This face just cracks me up

This is what Matt gets for coming home early.  Daddy DayCare time

First snow of the year!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Avery's 3!!

So many fall birthdays!  I was telling a friend that I feel like our lives change 5 times over each fall, with the closing of summer activities, the start of school and all of the birthdays we get to celebrate - so many changes all happening so quickly!  This time it's Avery's turn.  My sweet, sweet Avery.  "Crazy Avy" and "Tazmanian Devil" were some of the loving nicknames given to you this year by those who know and love you best.  You sure do make us smile - and laugh!  Always up for an adventure, you're as busy as Curious George, somehow able to find the opportunity to make a mess within seconds.  Your sweet innocence makes it nearly impossible to be frustrated with you and the stories I tell of your adventures always make someone smile.  Those dimples are just darling and I could eat you up if only I could keep you still for long enough :)  We love you, sweet one.  Thank you for bringing us such joy!

Today we decided to have a Girls Day to celebrate you.  Daddy was working so after a quick breakfast at Krispy Kreme I dropped off Caleb and Jadyn so that you, Addie, and I could head out for a day on the town!  It started with a drop-in dance class, followed by your first (for a long while!) trip to the spa, topped off by your favorite and mine Taco Bell :)  After rest time we met Daddy, Grandma Popa and Grandma Pat at Culver's for dinner, then back home for presents! 

 Dance class:

At the Spa:
The girls let you and Addie have hot chocolate (which Mommy insisted you drink on the floor)

Picking your color

Addie's pretty toes

"I can't believe it" you exclaimed when you saw the finished product

Time for fingers!

This is totally Addie's thing

 At dinner:

J Bug

A Zhu Zhu Pet!

Another family birthday picture.  Can you guess who just lost his Lego StarWars guy in between the seat and the wall?

All better.  Caleb explaining why he gave her Princess Leah for her birthday with a gentle hug.

Toy Story 3 for the LeapTag!