Monday, December 31, 2012

Singing Christmas Songs

Since the kids are older we decided to spend some time each night singing Christmas songs and letting the kids play an instrument while Gary played the guitar. 

DSCN2057Ethan’s favorite song was Angels We Have Heard on High all because of the “glo---ri-a”.  He really liked that part of the song.  He also liked Hark the Herald Angels Sing because of the phrase “newborn king”.  We received a singing Christmas card last year which played that song, and Ethan would sing the words, “newborn king”.  So he remembered that and liked the song a lot.

DSCN2066Each night Sienna shook the bells or shaker some, but she mostly danced around in circles.  DSCN2377The picture above was taken on the 27th.  Yes, we’re still singing Christmas songs!—not that I mind. :-)  Sienna probably turned in circles for 2-3 songs (each with about 3 verses).  As soon as we finished a song, she would say, “Again”.  She would shake the bells and shaker the whole time she was turning in circles.  I’m not sure how she didn’t fall over from spinning so much. 

I just assumed that we wouldn’t be singing Christmas songs once the 25th had passed, but Ethan has requested each night since Christmas that we sing Christmas songs!  Now he will request “let heaven and nature sing” meaning Joy to the World and “oh come let us adore Him” meaning Oh Come All Ye Faithful.  He doesn’t know the words to the songs, but has learned some of the phrases.  Sienna started requesting “Dora” meaning Oh Come All Ye Faithful (oh come let us ADORE Him).  It took me a little bit to figure out that “Dora” was “adore”.  I have some great videos of the kids singing and dancing, but I don’t know how to put a video on here.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Cute Christmas Pictures

Here are a few Christmassy pictures from this month that I thought were cute, but they didn’t really fit on the other blog posts. :-)

DSCN1988DSCN1998Ethan and Sienna playing the tambourine and bells.  Check out Sienna’s “Dorothy” shoes that my mom got her.

DSCN1962- Better oneWe tried a lot to get a family photo with us dressed up, but most attempts were unsuccessful.  How in the world do families get a good picture of the whole family when they have 3 or 4 young kids?!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas Day

We had a good-sized group over for Christmas dinner.  Since there were 6 boys all under age eight (5 of them not being in school yet), I thought it would be good for them to burn some energy off at the beginning.  So the kids played outside in the snow when they arrived.

DSCN2242Some of the kids ate at the “big” table while some ate at the “little” table.  DSCN2244Before it was over Joshua and Nathan ended up on their mom’s laps, and Sienna ended up in her booster seat.  So, William was the only one left at the “little” table. 

DSCN2273After we ate Gary played the guitar while we all song Christmas songs.  The kids played instruments (well, at least some of the kids did :-)).

DSCN2265It was great having the Custers, Strellmans, Luiza’s mother from Romania, and Amanda over!

It is such a blessing to have the freedom to celebrate the birth of Christ and sing Christian songs without worrying if my neighbor will call the police (many people in certain parts of the world are not able to openly celebrate like us).

I hope all of you reading this had a wonderful Christmas!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Adam

The people at Campus Crusade’s headquarters here celebrate Christmas Adam, which is the day before Christmas Eve (Adam came before Eve… get it? :-)).  We usually have a dinner and then sing songs or have some kind of program.  In recent years Gary and I have not been able to pay much attention beyond eating with having young kids.  In fact, this year we were out in the hallway for most of the program because that is where the kids were.

DSCN2124Ethan counting to 10 while the other kids (except William and Sienna) ran down the hall.  I’m not sure what they were playing since there was no place to hide.  I think it was a version of tag.  

DSCN2139Ethan followed one of the older kids back into the main room where everyone was while Gary and I were still out in the hall with Sienna.  Unknown to us, the little kids had been told to come up front.  Then Ethan said with a loud voice, “I’m a kid!”  We were told that it was really funny and everyone laughed.  When we did make it back in the room, the kids were singing.

DSCN2145At the end of each song Ethan kept asking Greg if he was going to play the bongo drum.  Either he ended up asking if he could play it or Greg thought he was asking that, so Ethan helped play the last song on the drum.  He really enjoyed that.


Saturday, December 22, 2012


A couple of weeks ago we had a decent amount of snow.  I’m not sure who was more excited… me or Ethan.

DSCN1815Sienna doesn’t remember the snow from last year, so this was kind of like her first experience trying to play in it. Her snow suit and boots are all too big for her, so she had a hard time even walking around. And, if she fell down, she couldn’t get herself back up. She wanted to go back inside after being out a very short time. I ended up bringing her snack outside so we could stay a little longer. She loves to eat!

DSCN1812Ethan trying to help Sienna up… unsuccessfully.  DSCN1813

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Decorating the Christmas Tree

Gary and Ethan got the Christmas tree put up the Saturday after Thanksgiving and then we decorated it the following Saturday.

DSCN1737Ethan was eager to help Daddy out in every aspect of decorating the tree. 

DSCN1741Trying to figure out the lights

  DSCN1754This picture totally captures Ethan and Sienna’s personality or maybe it’s just the difference in being boy and girl.  All she wanted to do during this part was to read.  Ethan loves to read, but in this case he would rather “work” on something or “figure something out”.

We finished decorating the tree on Sunday after our guests left from celebrating Advent.DSCN1783Ethan and Sienna each hung the Christmas ornament that Grandma gave them for their first Christmas. DSCN1786

DSCN1795We tried to get some pictures of the kids after decorating the tree, but most didn’t turn out.  Sienna isn’t much for sitting still for Mommy’s 10 million pictures.  We thought this one was pretty cute though.