Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Years!

We are celebrating today with these bags, thanks to pinterest!
Activities in each bag to help us remember last year
and look forward to the coming year.

9 am: We will be doing this end of the year question sheet....wondering what Reese's answers will be.

10 am: Playing the calendar game: acting out something we did from each month.

11 am: Making this cute craft and each setting a goal for the new year.

12 noon: Making a tent and reading a book from each season.

1 pm: Working on our number concepts with this clothes pin activity.

2 pm: Watch home videos from this year.

(2-4ish = take a nap!! :) )

5 pm: Answer some fun dinner time questions and then set goals for "Team Thomson", like build a bigger garden this year....

6 pm: Take a handful of m&ms and for each one you get say what you are thankful for from this year....and then eat the m&ms of course! 

7 pm: Play a game.

8 pm: Have a dance party!

9 pm: Toast in the new year and watch the ball drop! We celebrate with the east coasters! 

Hoping it all goes to plan!
With a tenacious toddler and a precious preschooler, you never know.... :)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Visiting the cows

There are new cow sculptures a Homestead park.
So we packed up the sick kids to get some fresh air.
 Then we explored the trail system there.
Did you know you can run 3 + miles there with out "doubling back"?
I had no idea the trails were so developed already.
And so pretty too!

 Maleah LOVED walking the trails
and HATED holding our hands

 And did you know at four you can go from grumpy....

 To happy and back to grumpy all in less than 5 seconds!
It is quite the trick!
(I should know, I can do it too. ;)

 Maleah really like the water view...

 And was hoping to find a way in!

 Reese and I ran ahead and made it to the bridge.
Then we ran back to daddy and Maleah...they walk a bit slower.
Apparently I was running too slow.

It was a short walk but a good one.
We'll be back to see you again soon cows! :)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Our Christmas

Daddy and daughters working together to wrap gifts......
for mommy! :)

 Big sister Jamie and Kyle came for a visit.
Reese was so excited!
And we were spending time with Jamie and Kyle.

 Opening up the last Christmas book for this year.
This new activity was a hit! 

 Eating Jesus's birthday night... on the floor....
 Without combing our hair!
It was a loooong day with sick kids....
but we still followed through with our activities.....
whether we should have or not!

 Christmas morning and the first gift that Maleah goes for......
is Sebbs dog bones. 
She does love dogs!

So big sister helped Maleah open her gift which was
a stuffed dog that Reese had "bought" for her. 

 A sweet sister moment!

 Helping Daddy open his gift we made him....
A sign for his office that says "Best Dad hands down"
with the girls hand prints on it.
It is already lovingly displayed at his office....
you should stop by and see it....and buy a house too! ;)

 Reese got matching jammies for her and baby.
And her most favorite gift was bitty baby! (Thanks G&G and Kami!)
Whose name is Charlotte on most days, 
but also sometimes called Ocean Diamond (you know, what she wanted to name Maleah)
Reese also enjoys her baby pillow Charlotte/OD can have one too.
And so she can take one with us when we travel.

For our gift giving we did: something you want, need, 
something to wear and something to read.
I liked that, and it limited me to 4 gifts.

But next year we are going to do mind, body and spirit.
I like the focus of this better, although it is more general in nature.
And I am also going to stick to a budget $$ for each person.
(I thought 4 gifts would do that for me..turns out not so....)
Not that each person has to get the same $ in presents, but so I limit my spending....
And get more creative with gift giving.

Hope you all enjoyed a Merry Christmas with your families!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


We made a gingerbread house, with some help from the Costco kit.
Reese really enjoyed decorating and REALLY wanted it to look
just like the picture on the box.
(I tried my best.)
She ate one of the gingerbread people as we finished.
We displayed it in our dinning room...for a couple days.
Until one night after dinner, we headed to the Y,
to burn off some of those holiday calories....
and Seb ate the ENTIRE house, tree and all!
So we burned a lot of calories that night!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Best Bread

really good banana bread recipe!

I have been searching for a good banana bread recipe.
Usually I don't like banana bread because it is too dry.
Matt LOVES banana bread.
To make us all happy, I tried this recipe.
It really is moist! The best I have had! 
And I am no baker that is for sure. But this bread turned out wonderful.

My other favorite bread this year is this:

It is even better when you add chocolate chips. ;)
We made it for all of Reese's teachers.....her 3 preschool teachers.....
and her two BSF of which stopped me at church on Sunday
and asked if I could make that bread to sell at the local market....
And I am not a baker! It is a REALLY good mix! :)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Singing Christmas Tree

We took the girls to Life Center's "Singing Christmas Tree" performance this year. Reese's first time, well and Maleah's first time too. This was pretty much the look on their faces the whole time:

(These dogs were just some of the animals that were part of the show!)

It is quite the production. The girls seemed to enjoy it. I was surprised that I was able to say in my seat the whole time with Maleah. She did really well. She got scared from time to time and would fling herself onto Daddy's lap (who was holding Reese on his lap) for comfort. Pretty cute. Reese's favorite part was seeing baby Jesus held up high. (Literally, they held him up high.)

We are looking forward to making this a part of our Christmas time celebration each year!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A dream come true!

Reese's Sunday school class did a "three song performance" after church.

And Reese got to be Mary!

And hold baby Jesus, so carefully.

And sing LOUDLY, with great joy.

Remember, Maleah got to play baby Jesus last year......

Reese has been wanting to be Mary ever since.
And her teachers knew that and lovingly made this little girls dream come true.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A book a day

Wrapped up our Christmas books this year
so that the girls could open one a day until Christmas Eve.
We had a few books,
we ordered a few from the class book order,
and we bought some from Bayside Books.
That is the local book store downtown, near El Pueblito.
The store owner makes wonderful recommendations.
She really knows her literature.
And their prices are perfect! Very reasonable.
So if you are looking for gifts, and some good books,
stop by Bayside books for sure!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Trying for a Christmas card picture.....

With a compliant, but moody four year old,
and a new walker who wants NOTHING to do with being still,
this is what you get:

Merry Christmas!!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Grandpa Tolar

My Grandpa (Dad's dad) passed away this week. He was a man of his word because he was a man of God. We would attend his church with our family on Easter and Christmas. They sang hymns, voices only and I loved it! And each Easter we would sing "Up from the grave", my favorite song, so well sung voices only. That is my favorite Grandpa memory. And to think we will sing it again, together, in heaven......

Grandpa was a wonderful story teller. I loved asking him questions about what my dad was like as a boy. I would always ask many questions as he told the story and Grandpa would have to slow me down.... "Now just hang on a second! I am getting to that part!"

I LOVED Grandpa's laugh! Something so comforting about hearing him laugh. And he laughed often. At his own jokes, at his wife, at his 5 kids, and with his grandkids and great-grandkids. I can still hear his laugh in my head. I hope that sound never fades.

Now he is laughing and rejoicing with Jesus, and my Grandma, who also had a wonderful laugh. How amazing that they are living with our Lord now. So looking forward to a great big hug from both of them.

To honor Grandpa, I want to live to love Jesus more and more, just as he did. I want to help others when they need help, not when I feel like it. I want to tell others plainly, lovingly about Jesus and not worry about their response. Because it is between them and Jesus. I want to laugh often and rejoice with my family. I want others to feel His love when they are with us.

Because that is what Grandpa and Grandma did. Their lives sparked my curiosity about who Jesus was. I chose to accept Him, and both of my sisters did as well. I chose to marry a man that follows Him and we are choosing to lead our girls to as well. That is a living legacy.

Love you Grandpa! Thank you for your service to our country, to your family and to Him.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Happy 13th month Maleah!

One month ago our baby turned one!
We started out by letting her open the one present from our family.
(Big sister could not wait for her to open it.)

We had a small party with friends to celebrate Maleah.

She LOVED her cake!
Maleah is a great, adventurous eater!

One month later......
Maleah is walking all over, sometimes running.
Talking! She has 20ish words.
She talks in sentences....but we have no idea what she is saying.
It is just jibberish, but she is mimicking how we talk...pretty funny!
She gets pretend play and loves to take care of baby dolls.
Maleah is not so much a baby anymore!