Tuesday, December 31, 2013

13 in 2013


On this last day of 2013, a looksie back for the ol' blog scrapbook.















Friday, December 27, 2013

7 Quick Takes: Christmas Roundup


1)
First up, a 27 week, 3 day photo.  There's no denying that bump looks like a boy.  And a big strapping boy at that. (Sorry, Maggie!)

2)
This is my oldest sibling, my brother Sean.  His birthday is on Christmas Day, and we really went all out this year and let him host the party and got him such an extravagant cake.  We Sweeneys are the nicest.  

Sean turned 47 *cough, cough, sigh, what?* this year and I am way too young to have a brother that old.  Jeepers.  He also thinks he can predict baby's genders by feeling the mom's belly.  He claims he's only been wrong one time, and that was when he guessed my Alexander would be an Alexandra.  As for this current womb baby o' mine...he says girl.  So I'm saying his wrongness tally is about to double.

3)
Here's my side of the family.  

Somewhere in there are my still-over-the-moon-in-love parents, their 6 kids, their 6 kids-in-law, and their 20 grandchildren.  When we have a family party, it really is just the immediate family...no aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents...and it still is overwhelming!  Good thing some of my siblings have big houses for hosting!

4)
Here are all the littles.  The oldest is 15 and the youngest is 2.  They all love each other so much.  It's pretty stinkin' awesome.  

Each child only gets ONE gift from all the Aunts & Uncles, and they love it, and it's perfect.  I highly recommend organizing your gift giving this way.  Ain't nobody got time for spoiled, entitled kids.

5)
Have you all read about Marijanna's baby boy that was born too early into Heaven?  Please send a hug and prayer her way.  She is doing so well, thanks be to God, because of the strong faith she and her hubby have.  Gabriel John was a gift and as Maggie said as soon as she found out what had happened "Oh my gosh, now they have a Saint in their family!!!!!"  Saint Gabriel John, pray for us.

6)
Last weekend, we went down to Maryland for a quick trip to celebrate Christmas with Phil's side of the family.  Lots of cousins to play with down there too!  Phil's parents have 6 kids, 3 kids-in-law, and 14 grandchildren (plus 2 in Heaven).  They also love playing together and are all close in age (from 11 down to 4 months).  



Making chocolate lollipops...


Although at times, it gets loud and messy and louder and messier, I can't imagine having Christmas without tons of little kids around.  I can literally count my blessings.  I say a special prayer this time of year for anyone suffering from infertility, loneliness, or illness.  May God give you peace and may you feel His love.

7)
Well, go celebrate with your loved ones because IT'S STILL CHRISTMAS!!!  Kelly has some great ideas on how to make the next 10 days or so special.  

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Morning Highlights

Obligatory Stairs Photo, 2013:
@ 6 am, one hour earlier than we had hoped for.

Seeing the stockings and presents:






Happy Kids:










Love these faces:




Breakfast included Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls - too yummy!


Highlights:

~ Maggie named her monkey "Saylia" because "she's silly, and Saylia sounds like silly".

~ Xander decided he was going to give us a Christmas miracle, and started potty-training at 2 years, 5 months.  He just asks to go on the potty, pee comes out, then he gets a chocolate.  Easy peasy.  I don't remember a child of mine ever taking the initiative and actually accomplishing anything.  Wonders never cease.

~ John-Paul got a Kindle gift card, then immediately went on his Kindle and "bought" 2 free games.

~ We gave each kid 3 gifts this year (because, as I told them, "You ain't no better than Jesus!") and it worked out awesome!  So much less clutter, and gifts that were really loved, not just bought to make it look like they got stuff. 

~ Andrew noticed the Pokemon cards were already well-loved, and thought it was so sweet when I told him a blog friend's boys sent them.  (Thanks Rebekah!)

~ Eamon's favorite gift was the Nerf gun, even though it doesn't work yet because someone, ahem, forgot to buy C batteries this year.

~ Right now the big boys are outside playing with their bow and arrow and Ripstik, the baby is having an early nap, Maggie is making bracelets, and I am able to record these memories in peace while listening to the Zac Brown Band's new album.  Ahhhhhhh.

~ Alexander thought the cat toy was for him.  Hey, no judging here.  Whatever keeps him entertained.

~ How do you know you've spent 11 married Christmases together?  When you buy your husband this, this, and this for Christmas.  I know, I know, I'm such a fun wife :)

~ How do you know your husband knows you better than you know yourself?  When you decide to get a big present for Christmas (like the bed we bought) and then insist that you don't need anything else to open on Christmas day...and he doesn't listen.  Love that man.

Merry Christmas!!!!!