Thursday, December 17, 2009

Advent 12th-17th

Advent Readings for the 12-17th
December 12 - Luke 1: 32-33
December 13 - Luke 1:34-35
December 14 - Luke 1:39-40
December 15 - Luke 1:57-80
December 16 - Luke 2: 1-7
December 17 - Luke 2: 8-10

Can You Say BAKLAVA!!!
A very dear lady from our church hosted a baklava party today. She had us all over and instructed us on how to make this amazing holiday treat...PLUS all the prep work was done and waiting for us upon arrival! It was a lot of fun, and I can honestly say I will only do it again if I have wonderful people around to talk to...It takes a long time and I would hate to do it by myself! Sometimes the true pleasure of cooking comes in the form of fellowship surrounding the food preparation!
Teri and Monika
Julia, Teri and Jessica
Young ladies and very good friends~!
Notice Tage's hat? He won it at Brant's work Christmas party! It's all wool...and actually a really nice elf hat. He wore it all day!
I look really bad in this picture! This past weeks activities are causing for a sleep shortage. I'll catch up over the weekend!

Advent 8th through the 11th

As with every Advent/Christmas season so far I get busy and don't have time to keep up with a daily blog here is a photo summary of the 8th through the 11th!
December 8th
New hot chocolate mugs and candy canes are the perfect treat while listening to Matthew 1
December 9th
Matthew 1:18-21
Happy 60th Birthday to our dad Dan! He looks great doesn't he!
December 10th
Matthew 1: 21-25
December 11th
Luke 1: 26-31
Grown-Ups need a little celebration too! We had some friends over for our 3rd annual Christmas Party. We had wonderful fellowship, LOTS of laughing, fantastic food, singing, gift exchanging, and a house full of babies!
I couldn't resist this picture!

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Progressive Tree 2009

Ben took this job very seriously!
Everyone was most excited about their stockings!
Tage's favorite ornament. A Starwars Stormtrooper.
I have to tell you all about our sweet Simon. Every year we give the kids an ornament and write a little letter to them about why we picked the ornament and what it symbolizes. So far the kids have only been mildly interested in the notes, they usually want to get right to decorating the tree! This year all of them wanted a note or two read, except Simon...He waited to decorate until all his notes were read. I actually had a hard time not sobbing through as I read them. It had been awhile since I had reviewed what I wrote! It was so sweet!
Violet examining the little baby Jesus figures the boys had made in Kindergarten

Sunday, December 6, 2009

7th Day of Advent!

For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
We headed to the mountains with our friends the Holladays to cut down our Christmas tree! We went up high where there was lots of snow so the kiddos spent a lot of time on the ground making snow angles, sliding around, digging, and picking out our tree of course!
Our 4 kiddos with their buddy Jordan! I love how this picture turned out!
Brant, Tage, Simon and Violet dragging the tree to the Jeep. Notice how short Simon and Violets snow pants are! They grew a ton in the last year.
Gotta have one of these shots...everyone is looking in a different direction...very typical!
Brent, Kim, Jordan and Jacob Holladay.
The men had fun too! Both cars were in 4-wheel and there was quite a lot of tire spinning going on!

6th Day of Advent

1God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds.
Brant and I farmed the kiddos out to friends and family for the night and headed to Seattle (again) to pick up a friend at the airport and do some Christmas shopping! The kiddos had their Advent reading before we left and celebrated in various ways with the families where they were staying!

5th Day of Advent

COLOSSIANS 1:15-20 15
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. 18And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. 19For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, 20and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. For the 5th day of Advent we took the kids out to dinner and headed to the East Wenatchee Christmas tree lighting! It was fun and had a VERY small town feel to it! We ran into lots of friends and got to have cookies and hot cider to celebrate. The picture above is actually at the Westlake Center Christmas Village in Seattle. I liked the picture so I thought I'd share it with you all :)~!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

4th Day of Advent

JOHN 1:18
No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him."Lets watch a Christmas movie after dinner!"
I adore this picture of Ben! I love his feet/toes, his dogie, his blanket, AND notice the Team In Training water bottle!!!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Advent Unveiling!

So here it is!!! My Advent project that turned out pretty darn cute, but took way more time than I was most projects do! Today was the 1st of December which started our official tangible countdown. Ben was the youngest so he got to lift the 1st tree and hand out the oh so yummy chocolate mints while Brant read about our Christmas heritage, Advent and the 12 Days of Christmas. We had to take a little pause in the scripture readings since our guide is last years and we were a day off. We'll get back to the story tomorrow! Happy Advent!
Advent calendar 2009!
I do plan to put more winter/holiday appropriate foliage in my vase, I just haven't got that far yet...Just in case you were wondering :)!
A little close up.
Ben about to lift up tree number1!

Monday, November 30, 2009

1st and 2nd Days of Advent

1st Day of Advent November 29,2009
JOHN 1:1-5 1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

We kicked off Advent and the Christmas season BIG this year! We got a hotel and took the kids into the city!!!!! Downtown Seattle has an amazing way of really getting you into the Christmas spirit! We rode the monorail into Westlake Center, went and saw Santa at Nordstroms, visited a rather spectacular gingerbread village created by Seattle architects and of course had hot chocolate and cookies at Starbucks! Their red holiday cups are just too festive to ignore!

2nd Day of Advent November 30,2009
JOHN 1:14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

Tonight was a quiet peaceful scripture reading by Tage, and peppermint suckers while we listened! Can't wait for tomorrow! We're unveiling the Advent calender and the 25 day count down....WOOOHOOO!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving From The Beach!

We are so very thankful for Brant's mom(aka: Beach Grandma, Gram Pam) and her willingness to serve us over the holiday weekend! She made a fabulous dinner, lives in an amazing place, and has been loving the kids to pieces! We are having a blast! Here are some things the kids said they were thankful for during dinner...
Ben: Breakfast and Milk.
Violet: Thankful for Grandma and for our lovely dinner.
Simon: The colors that God gave us and for the blue sky.
Tage: Thankful for God. He is happy he made humans so that we can live. He also is thankful God gives us rain so we can have plants!
Brant: Is thankful that I love and married him despite his LOVE for flannel PJs.
Rachel: I am thankful for Gods abundant kindness on my family!

Monday, November 23, 2009

I Run For Life With A Smile On My Face And A Cheerful Heart!

Here goes my public announcement that I will run the Seattle half-marathon on Sunday without whining, fussing, or complaining about how bad it hurts, how cold the weather is or any other thing I usually come up with during a race! My dear friend Jenny who (on the right with the purple bandanna) is in the hospital with her 5th occurrence of leukemia NEVER and I mean NEVER complains or crys about her circumstance, therefore I will endure this race in honor of her with a smile on my face and hopefully a whole lot of bounce in my step as I pound the pavement for 13.1 miles! I will keep running for life....

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Friday, November 6, 2009

Being Mrs. Under Appreciated Is A Good Thing!

Wow! Being under appreciated or overlooked for a good deed or hard work is not something I ever thought would be a virtue. However over the past few weeks I have been studying Esther and while I have learned a lot about being a woman of strength, I have taken much away from Mordecai's character. Mordecai was a wise man. He was intentional in his actions, not acting out of rage, anger, selfishness or deceit. He was a content man who possessed a great deal of humility. After saving the King from murder by his own eunuchs, he was never given a proper reward and or recognition for such a noble act. He was overlooked for five years without saying anything! He continued to be faithful to the King and did not have that burning flame of bitterness brewing in his gut. How many of us can say we would be quiet and calm in a similar situation? Think about your life and all you do. Do you seek worldly gratification? Do you want people to honor and recognize you? The question is this: What are you doing? and Why are you doing it? I have been pondering this a lot lately as I continue to juggle my four children, my husband and various other activities we are involved in. I need to remember that I serve a faithful God who promises to love me no matter what as long as I seek to please and honor HIM in all that I do. The worldly gratification is like refined sugar, it is sweet to the tongue but holds no nutritional value.....

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

T R E A T I N G 2009 !!!!!

I like to call it TREATING because that's really what happens! Our kiddos go door to door in our neighborhood and get little bits of treats and blessings from our neighbors who look forward to seeing them dressed up in their little make believe costumes. Some of our neighbors have special treats set aside for our children to make the evening extra-special. I love that we are able to go out and share our wonderful children and their imaginations with our neighbors. It's hard to reach out and fellowship with your neighbors during the week, but days like this allow for us to knock on doors, say hello, share a smile and sometimes a story and make that eye contact that we so often forget is important in our neighborhoods. I'm certain that our neighbors were impacted by the sheer number of kiddos that came TREATING with us, AND by their sweet smiles, abundant cheerfulness and their ability to love their neighbor in the meantime. After TREATING we had everyone in for movies, charades and caramel corn! It was a blast and ending the evening with piping HOT caramel corn was truly one of my personal highlights!
Quite the group! We had two parents dress-up. Castillia Cava was Cat-In-The-Hat and Beth Olson was Raggedy Ann. Good job ladies!
Ben was a pirate, Violet was Maid Marion, Simon was Martin Luther, and Tage was Commander Rex .
Tage and Ben were in serious character mode all day! It was awesome!

"The Corn"

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Dad's HOT!

Last night at Costco while we were sitting eating hot dogs and pizza....

Violet: I need to go potty.
Mom: Ok then (starting to set down my food so I could take her to the bathroom)
Violet: NOOOOO! I want dad to take me!
Brant: Why don't you want mommy to take you?
Violet: Because I want a "HOT GUY" like you daddy to take me....

SERIOUSLY!!!! She said that... I instantly started laughing and Brant responded with..."How can you say no to that"!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Sneak Peek!

Taken today at her little birthday party...more to come SOON!!!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Chair Time With Ben

Here’s a shocker...The Madsons have TONS of energy and we have to train our children and ourselves for that matter, to sit quietly without movement and noise. For some families this comes naturally...NOT for ours! We instituted "Chair Time" way back when Tage was a toddler and have practiced it off and on over the years with the older three kiddos. Ben however has NEVER experienced "Chair Time" and lately I have noticed things would be a lot easier if I would work with him on it. NOTE!!! Your kiddo strapped into a car seat for long periods of time during the day does NOT constitute chair time...I can speak from experience! Now on with the story...Here is how we do chair time...

1. Put a kitchen/desk chair in the middle of the living room floor.

2. Let the kiddo pick out 3 or 4 books depending on the length of time they will be sitting.

3. No toys, blankets etc...Just kiddo and books.

4. Set timer. I started Ben off with 10 min and we will work up to 30 min over the school year.

5. Remind them that there is no talking or singing or noise making and they have to stay on the chair until they hear the beeper.

6. Blessings at the end! I let the kids pick one of the books they were looking at for me to read while they eat a cookie! Lots of praise, hugs and of course cookies!

Ben did a fabulous job today, and we read "Where The Wild Things Are" when he was done. I think that book is quite fitting...Don't you!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Chelsey's 1st Birthday

I may very well be in trouble for posting these before Michelle, but hey...I remembered my camera and if I don't keep posting I will never get caught up!
She wasn't crazy about the birthday hat.
Yummy cupcake!
Wanna taste mom?
Oh SO happy!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Grandkids Oh MY!

Here is on of my favoriate pictures from the summer. We spent a week at the Sandpiper Beach Resort (on the Washington coast) with my sister's family and my parents. On the last day we had an all kids and grandparents photo shoot....I love the end result!

Tractor Rides

Classic...and Yes, it is an O'Douls...You'll have to ask my dad why they were drinking O'Douls
Cousins LOVE a good ride in the wagon behind the John Deere!