Feliz Navidad!

There's nothing like spending the Holidays surrounded by those you love. Olivia is waking up with her morning joe and some furry friends.Thanks for the bake set grandma!!
Even though our family is very young, traditions have to start somewhere! This year, we invited all the folks from our Spanish ministry over for Christmas dinner. I made a HUGE pot of pozole and bread pudding. Pozole is a Mexican soup that is very simple but comforting and delicious. The soup consists of broth, chicken, and hominy, but then you serve it with shredded lettuce, chopped onion, cilantro, oregano, red chile sauce, avocado, lime, radishes, and tortilla chips. It is a delicious combination of spicy and tangy, hot and cool, and soft and crunchy. The bread pudding was the traditional American touch I had to squeeze in there.
Olivia had fun all day. She was all over the place! People were handing her cookies left and right. When I looked at her chocolate covered face, sticky hair, and stained shirt, I had to laugh because she reminded me of Templeton the rat in Charlottes Web when he went to the fair.

God has given us a tremendous opportunity here in Charleston. We are able to minister to people from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Cuba, Columbia, Equador, and Puerto Rico all in this one city in the southeast! Praise His Name!We pulled out Catch Phrase later on that evening. That was interesting! The game is in English, so Alex started off by going around the room and whispering the word in the person's ear in Spanish. After one very unsuccessful and confusing round, we changed the game to where Alex described all the words and the teams got points for each one they guessed. We were all laughing, and I even guessed a few myself :)


Our Pathetic Attempt at Christmas Pictures

Everything seemed to start out just fine....

Olivia was holding little AJ...

The chair wasn't working, so we decide to move the photo shoot to the floor...

Then Olivia lost her shoe and AJ was removed from the picture for a minute...

When AJ returned, he started crying, and Olivia quickly shoos him off her lap...

Hmmm.. Maybe he should sit next to his sister...

Maybe on the other side....

Maybe we should just try pictures another day!


Magical Basket

O.K. maybe I am getting a little too transparent with this post, but this cracked me up this morning! I started sorting the clothes out of our laundry basket, and the clothes just kept coming and coming and coming. It was like Mary Poppins' laundry basket!
Laundry is like the big black hole on my to-do list. Have you found any good strategies to keep the piles under control? Perhaps the most obvious one would be to end this post and go throw in another load.


Li'l Cuties

Olivia loves her new snowman puppet. Thanks aunt Stephanie!

AJ has finally grown into 0-3 month clothes! This is a picture of him wearing his first big boy outfit. Yeah!


Weekend in Review

This weekend we went to the Holiday Festival of Lights. It was so much fun driving through the park oooooing and aaahhhing over the beautiful light displays around us.
We stopped halfway through the park to ride the carousel. Olivia got to ride the zebra :)
There was also a huge roasting pit where Alex and Olivia "roasted" (burned would probably be the more accurate word to use) marshmallows.

This is a bonus picture for grandma. We received our package of the cookies she makes every year, and I caught Olivia helping herself to a few cooKEYs that I left by the computer. She just sat there so still like "if I don't move then maybe mom won't take my cookie away".


AJ Visits the Doctor

You'd think that getting 3 shots would be bad enough.....

. . . mom also made me wear my Monkey Sweater!

AJ went for his 2 month check up today. All is well, and he weighed in at a whopping 8lbs. 10 oz. He is such a tiny little guy. The doctor wants to do a weigh in in 2 weeks and then decide if we need to supplement with formula.


Dad's Day Off

I love this man!

He spent his day off painting Olivia's room and moving the furniture around and around!

Olivia loves riding with daddy when he goes to pick people up for church on Sunday!

Even little AJ already knows that his dad is pretty great!



For Kaitlin

This post is dedicated to my wonderful little sister Kaitlin. I just want you to know that I am so so proud of you! You have brought so much joy to your family, and you are miles upon miles ahead of where I was at when I was your age. You are a wonderful aunt to little Olivia and AJ, I hope that Olivia gains from the example that you have set before her. I want her to see and learn from your compassionate heart and meek spirit. Your sensitivity to and love for the Lord is evident. These teen years can be full of trials, but keep your eyes on the Lord and be filled with His Word!! Don't get caught up in the self-life. Live to serve others in His name! Stay faithful little sis! Katie-pooh, we love you!


If you can't beat 'em... let them join you!

Housework isn't what it used to be. What once could be accomplished in a day or two now seems to have expanded over an unending unspecified period of time. The casserole must have been invented by a young mother who out of desparation just dumped all her ingredients in a 13x9 in. pan and popped it in the oven. But you know... that's O.K.! I should count it all joy that my little girl could think of nothing else that she would rather do than be in the kitchen helping mom. Since Friday night is pizza night, I pulled a bin of Christmas decorations up to the counter, put a few tablespoons of flour into a small metal bowl, and let her "help". You know, I was more blessed by her little mess and by watching her play in the flour than I would have been if she was out of the kitchen and playing with something else.


Catching Up

Alex's mom and grandma visited during his ordination weekend back in November. They enjoyed our trip to downtown Charleston.

What did mommy get you Olivia?? Let me explain. I was driving home alone with the kiddies and just had to zip through the drive thru for a Coke. I went ahead and ordered a kid's size Sprite for Olivia. When the lady handed me the drinks, Olivia saw that I got one for her and yelled "yeah!" That just cracked me up! She felt sooo special that she got her own little drink. After we got home, she walked around with her drink and grinned ear to ear everytime she took a sip. Oh the joy that a little kiddie drink brings!

Olivia is helping mommy clean the windows.


Happy Birthday to Me!

Yesterday was my birthday, and I just want to thank my wonderful husband for making it such a special day for me!

First of all, I was awakened by my tall handsome husband holding a cup of Dunkin' Doughnuts coffee (double cream double sugar) and a doughnut. He snuck out early in the chilly morning just to bring that back and suprise me :)

Later on that morning I fed the baby, put Olivia down for a nap, and headed out BY MYSELF (it was Alex's day off, so he watched the kiddies) to get a much needed haircut! Yes, I broke down and got a mommy haircut. There just comes a time in every young woman's life when she's gotta retire those hot rollers and just get some really good little clippies.

After I got back, fed the baby again, and got Olivia up from her nap, we all headed out to the mall because Alex wanted me to pick out an outfit. We ended up sitting in the little playland in the middle of the mall for most of the time, but I can just get the outfit another day-- it was more fun watching Olivia climb over big plastic mushrooms and butterflies.

Later on that night, some dear friends of ours watched the children while Alex took me to the Olive Garden for dinner. He gave me a precious card that I could read over and over and over again.

What a great day! It seemed like the whole day was full of nice suprises and love from my family!


What a Weekend!

A VERY EMBARRASSING MOMENT. . . I was making rice for the Spanish Christmas fellowship when our smoke alarm went off. Alex turned it off, but this smoke alarm alerts the fire department when it goes off. So... I'm standing in my robe in my kitchen when I suddenly hear BAM BAM BAM! FIRE DEPARTMENT! As funny as the situation was, I don't remember the last time I felt that embarrassed.
Nevertheless... we had a great time at the Fellowship!
Here's a picture of our group. We had a great time together! God is doing a wonderful work among the people here, and we are so blessed to participate in it!
The Children are Surviving it All

Olivia looked a little tired Sunday morning. She wasn't exactly in the mood to be photographed :) I'm learning that getting a decent picture of your newborn and toddler together isn't as easy as it looks.