Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas 2009

Christmas is always such a great time, even when your kids are older and some of them gone. We love having the holidays with the kids around, and cannot imagine it without them. It will be a lonely day when Kevin and I have to spend it by ourselves and the kids are doing their own thing with their families. For now, we enjoy every minute we have with them.

We set the alarm for a much later time this year, which was nice for mom and dad. The kids ALWAYS sleep in the same room on Christmas Eve, no matter how many there are, and no matter if there are in-laws too! It's made for a crowded bedroom almost every year, but they wouldn't do it any other way. When I was heading to bed at around 1 a.m., I could hear the kids in the bedroom singing "Angels We Have Heard on High." That has become a tradition too. They always sing themselves to sleep. Here's Kira checking out her new sewing machine...
I think Landon was the most surprised this year. He opened up this "little" present to find this...
...his new drumset!
Tibi got a new portable DVD player for road trips and hanging out in her bedroom.
Checking out the stockings. (Landon didn't let his drumset out of sight!)
Three of the kids got slippers this year.
Tibi's new Ugg slippers.

Next to his new drumset, and the quilt that Michaela made him out of all of his playing t-shirts, I think this is Landon's prized possession. His BYU football vault book, a very nice, big, full of everything BYU football informational book. Later in the day, I walked past his bedroom to find his bed made (really!) with his new quilt and his book laying nicely on top of it. That's when I knew that he had had a good Christmas! (Notice he already has his slippers on)
The joke of the morning. Tibi and Michaela have been laughing about those stupid "Snuggie" blanket thingies that are on TV and in the stores, so naturally Tibi got one for Michaela!
Mom did good and got dad the ice pink tie he requested. Do any of you know how hard it is to shop anything clothes for Kevin?! If you know him at all (past custom clothier, very fashion conscience, always looks good in anything), you know that this was a miracle for Vicki! Yeah mom!! (It will look better with his charcoal suit than it does with his baseball t-shirt, I'm sure)
One of many quilts Tibi got this year. This was a rag quilt made up from scrap left over fabrics that she has been eyeing for some time. Great for those track meets coming up!
I made each of the girls a quilt this year. I started them back in August and got them done for Christmas. It was so fun to do them, as they are my prized girls in all the world! Definitely a labor of love.

The new drumset ready to set up in Landon's bedroom eventually.
Every year we head over to the Chappells for Christmas breakfast after opening our presents. We actually started this tradition and used to do it at our house with Vicki's family, but when they all moved away we started doing it with the Chappells. They have a bigger house and more family that comes, so we have been having it at their house for the last few years. This year we expanded to "2" tables. I always make my "fake" cinnamon rolls, a recipe that my mother used to make for us, and the kids have been requesting oven pancakes lately to go with the eggs, bacon, and juice we always have. It's become a fun tradition.

Then we packed up and headed to Arizona to get to the other kids and grandkids. Christmas isn't Christmas without everyone! So into the cars and off we went...

The three oldest grandkids got robes with their pajamas this year. Levi and Phoenix got a pillowcase to match their PJ's.

The "big" grandkids opening their color and paint books.
Levi got a bunch of new cars to play with. He finally got something that is totally his. Being the third child sometimes stinks when it comes to having your OWN things. Grandpa and Grandma took care of him!
Eden opening her "My Little Pony" puzzle...
Lexie is pretty excited about her new brownie pan that gives you "edges" on every piece. Cool new product for edge-lovers! Who knew?!Kira got a sweet gift card from Peter to Sephora to get herself the makeup she has wanted to get.Connie got a sweet curlbar from her dad.

We were able to head over to the Mesa Temple to see the Christmas lights too. They had the prettiest colors, even purple, all through the grounds.
Their nativity scene was wonderful with the neatest star. You could see it from far away and all you had to do was "follow the star" to get to the nativity. It was cold, but not windy, which we were grateful for.
It was a wonderful time, but we couldn't stay forever. So back to Logandale on Sunday night in time for work on Monday. Darn those Mondays...and darn that traffic over Hoover Dam on a Sunday night. We spent over three hours getting about 15 miles down the road! Not fun, but great company...

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Putting Up The Tree...

This has become one of our favorite parts of the Christmas season - hanging up and decorating the tree. Tibi and Landon get it all to themselves now that all of the other girls are gone. We still have to divvy out the Washington DC ornaments between everyone, but other than that, it's smooth sailing...for the most part.
Kira is home, but let the kids do their job as she was busy doing a job herself. She was in the middle of transforming Lexie's white vans into a work of art. She is getting pretty good at doing that. She should go into business. She customs them to the liking of her "patient". (Hogwart's logo, NBA, Jackson 5 - you know.)
It was rainy and cold, bitter cold, so Kit decided that inside must feel better than outside. Of course, the rest of the family let her in. This time she didn't even wait till mom said that it was okay, evidently. She even crossed the kitchen tile to get into the family room, which is a first for her!
Dad got to sit and relax after he got the lights on the tree. That's his only job.
This year dad got another tree for the front room. My piano student called it the "Target" tree, because it is red and white. It lights up the whole room at night.
The grandkids even ended up with a little tree all for themselves!
That means we are a "3 tree family!" I guess that's kind of like becoming a 3 car family, or a 3 TV family. We are really coming up in the world, don't you think?!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009

Okay, I know that I am a traitor. It's been three weeks since I have blogged, which is a long time for me. And now that I am back to blogging, I have to steal all of these Thanksgiving pictures from Lexie and Connie because I was busy taking pictures while there, with Lexie's camera. We had a great time in St. George, as usual, with all of our Willard relatives. My kids have never known another way of doing Thanksgiving, and I have never in all of my Thanksgiving-ing had to cook a turkey, so it is all fine with me. I can make a mean fruit salad though...
Here are some candids, mostly for those of you who are not immediate family members, which is very unlike me...
The grandkids trying their hands at Nintendo 64 at our house before we headed to St. George. They are not good, but love to try!

Thanksgiving morning is always breakfast at the church, with a game of basketball "bumpout" thrown in. The rest of us mingle and catch up.
Kira, Michaela, and Tibi
In line for bumpout. Getting a candid shot of all 6 kids is a miracle.
All the kids were here this year, except for Lexie's husband, Sharrid, who had to work Thanksgiving day. We did get to see him on the weekends before and after Thanksgiving dropping off and picking up Lexie and the boys.
Tibi, Michaela, and Connie
Kira, Michaela, and TibiNo pictures of the actual dinner. We are usually cramped into one room anyway and can't get to our cameras. This year we had 150 Willards, the most we've ever had. That number of Willards comes from Kevin's mom and dad alone. (And I thought the Packard family was big)
Friday morning we usually spend at a park playing and eating lunch. Here's Phoenix showing Landon how to catch a ball...
Kevin loves to catch up on things with his many brothers. If you know Kevin at all, you know that he LOVES to talk, and he and his brothers come from the same mother, so when they get together - well, you know the rest. I said his mother because his father hardly got a word in with mother around! This was the first Thanksgiving without having both of them there. It's not the same without them, but we still manage to have a great time.
Brother Parry and Kevin
I snuck a picture with him while I could grab him.