Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Morning!

This year we took the kids to the Easter Vigil mass on Saturday night.  It is a very long mass but I have to say that my night-owl children did great and it was really nice to avoid the crowds on Easter Sunday.  Let's remember for future reference, to arrive at the Vigil a little earlier next year so we can ensure everyone gets candles.  Unfortunately, we missed getting a candle when everyone was still outside and Emily got really upset.  Again, we were very lucky that some nice family saw we didn't have candles and offered us one of theirs once we got into the church.  I don't think they realized how much this meant to Emily but I was very grateful to see her be able to fully participate.
At our church, the old testament readings were read in the dark... I mean pitch dark.  Lia and Emily kind of freaked out a little bit but luckily they were able to hold my cell phone for some comforting light.  That said, the part of the mass where the lights came on and we sang all the alleiluias was really powerful and the kids were more comfortable after that.  I think we were at church till almost 11pm so everyone was ready for bed but I stayed up a little longer to put out the Easter baskets for the next day.  Several of our dear friends and family members contribute to the Easter goodies each year and I am always amazed at how great the kid's Easter baskets come together each year.  I found the pinwheels in the dollar bins at Target.  What a hit they were! 

Stacey, the fridge magnets and window decals filled out my baskets perfectly!  Thank you.

Oh yes, the kids made sacrifices all during Lent and filled the rectangular vase with beans each time they did something kind for each other.  They were happy to find the beans changed into Reeses Peanut Butter cups on Easter morning!

Nana and Grandpa's cookie box!

David dearly loves Mad Libs.  Thank you Stan and Peg!  Spot on, again.

Look at  all these adorable Easter cookies!  Thank you Nana and Grandpa.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Emily's Dogwood Tree

We brought home a dogwood tree from the Texas Wildlife and Woodland Expo!  Emily picked it out and wanted it to be her special tree.  They can grow to be 40 feet tall... and I hope her tree does!  My thought is to compare these pictures with the ones we take around next Easter.  And by the way, Emily is taking very good care of "her" baby tree.

The feathers are serving as tree markers so "her" tree isn't accidentally pulled as a weed... or run over with the lawn mower by accident.  She has such high hopes for this tree.  I just hope it makes it through its first summer!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Habemus Papem - Our new Pope!

When Pope Benedict the 16th resigned, as part of our homeschool, we started talking about the Papal office and how the new pope would be elected.  It was such an exciting time and one my kids may not experience again during their schooling years.  Once the conclace began to select the new pope, we were on the lookout for the news of white smoke which would indicate a new pope had been selected.  When we got that news, we anxiously turned on the TV and waited to find out who it would be!  Here is Emily when the announcement was made that Jorge Mario Bergoglio would be our next pope, Pope Francis!

Emily diligently put together this Papal lapbook that Jessica at Shower of Roses put together.  We all learned so much about the Papal office through this project.  Emily took a lot of pride in her work and I am just so proud of all her efforts.  The following pictures will give you an idea about this lapbook.  It is just a file folder used to creatively display information.  Many of the items in her lapbook are mini books which unfold to display more information.  For example, the vocabulary words are flaps that can be opened to see the definition.

The cover is the flag for Vatican City

Here is the Lap Book opened up

This is an extra page that flips up since we had so much information!

And the back... with a lovely coloring page of Jesus giving St. Peter the keys to the Church

This one is actually a pop-up book for St. Peters Basilica.

And of course, now Emily really, really wants to visit the Sistine Chapel.  And honestly, I would love to see it again too!

And this video was so entertaining and educational at the same time!  My kids kept asking to watch it over and over again!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

More Fun with Family and Friends

The weather was a little cool in the mornings but beautiful in the afternoon.  The kids (and Pop Pop)are enjoying the park here.  I love that they are all the see-saw together.  Not a bad day to play hooky from school either...  ;-)

 Here is David and Anthony in their matching stripes.  Anthony quickly learned all his cousins' names and would shout out "Dadid", "Ia", and "Emmy" so joyfully.  He has been so much fun to have at our house!

Everyone wants to hold Anthony's hand in the parking lot.

Blocks.  The best toy ever.  Look at this smile... He wouldn't knock down the tower...

Oh well... yes he would!

Here is Lia all dolled up for church in her new dress from Nana and Grandpa.  And she is extra fancy in her new hat too!

Another beautiful day.

Emily found her friend Rebecca after church.

And Lia found her friend Cecilia too.  I love that they were excited to have their picture taken together.

Big Birthday Weekend - March 2

Lia's actual birthday is February 8th but we had to delay the celebration to take a family vacation to Disney World... (I'm working on those pictures next!)  It worked out really well though because Stacey and Anthony were able to join us from New Mexico and Pop Pop was able to make the trip from South Carolina as well.  Her Nana and Grandpa, Aunt Jeanne and Cousin Jed were able to celebrate with us again this year too!  What a lucky 5 year old Lia was this year and I am very happy I was able to get some group photos to memorialize this.

And another group shot... (swap out cousin Jed for Chris)  Where is that tri-pod?

A very happy birthday girl with her Gigi's Miss Princess cupcake.  The rest of us got the mini party versions which were delicious.  I am very pleased with the dessert decisions this year. 

 Happy family with cupcakes and coffee.

The kids really enjoyed this I Spy game from Aunt ReRe.  Thank you!

Lia is loving her Hello Kitty hat from Aunt Stacey, Uncle Te Te and Anthony.

 And a little love... (that is the best birthday gift of all)

Lia's 5th Birthday with Family

And the big moment... You don't really turn 5 until your whole family sings to you and you get to blow out the candles.  Our special party guests included Pop Pop, Nana and Grandpa, Aunt Stacey, Cousin Anthony, Aunt Jeanne and cousin Jed.  What a blessed day.  And on a funny note, if you  notice me covering my son's mouth... it was to stop him from blowing out Lia's candles!