Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas parties

Teacher gifts - Thank you Pinterest for another lovely idea.

Yesterday we had Joseph's class party.  The room moms split up the food and activities and I was in charge of juice boxes.  Joseph enjoyed helping me make the snowman minions.
 Joseph sits at the yellow table next to his good friend Geethika.
 They enjoyed making a candy cane bird feeder out of Apple Jacks.
 And taking fun pictures for the yearbook.
 We love Joseph's teacher, Ms. Barringer.  Joseph is excited about his Christmas vacation but has admitted that he will miss her a lot.

The Polar Express

Since we are not traveling for the holidays this year it worked out for us to take a quick weekend trip up to Branson to ride The Polar Express!  We surprised the boys on Saturday morning with presents containing new Christmas jammies, robes, books and a golden ticket to ride the train.

 Joseph's tearful response: "Is this really happening?!  Today?!  This is the best day ever!"  He was even more delighted when we told him that his friend Henry and his family were meeting us there.

 We got to our hotel in Branson and were thrilled to find out that we could see the train from our window!

 We walked to the depot and picked up our tickets and then walked around the Promenade with our friends.

 Finally it was time to go get our jammies on and head back to the depot.  First we made a little stop in the lobby to have cookies and a story with Mrs. Claus.

 Then we stood by the track waiting for the train to return from its previous trip.

 Finally it was our turn to board!  We walked through a snow machine and past the Hobo atop the train.  Then we settled into our table in the dome above the dining car.

 The conductor read the story on the way to the North Pole.
 And our waiter brought us yummy cookies and hot chocolate (with refills)!!

 And then Santa came to see us!!!

 He also signed our books.
 When we got home we laminated our real tickets and hung them with the bell on our tree.
 And put our homemade tickets in our books.

We had so much fun making this memory with our boys and kicking off our Christmas season.  

New Room!!!

When we bought our house the bonus room was unfinished.  Our builder left the sheet rock in the room but did not intend to finish it.  We were excited about finishing this room for the boys one day.

 When Jake was born my dad and Christopher spent several days wiring, insulating and sheet rocking the room.

 They also built this cool tunnel under the eaves.

 Since then we've done more work on it here and there . . . such as adding beadboard to the tunnel and one of the walls.

Then we decided, to finish it off and make sure it matched the rest of the house, to contract with our original builder for the rest of the work.  

We were fortunate to have the same trim guys (that did the rest of our house) finish this room.

 Then the painters came in and went to work.  I was a little nervous about the colors because we had chosen two shades of blue.  I was afraid it would look like the Cookie Monster.

 But it doesn't!!!  Everything turned out so great.

 Joseph and I painted verses on the floor before carpet was laid.  This verse is under their beds.
 And this verse is under their chairs.
 Jacob was so excited to see the new carpet.
 He even volunteered to vacuum.
 I finally was able to use this fabric that I bought for $4 a yard two years ago!
 I love these awesome train sheets also purchased a couple of years ago with this room in mind.

 Christopher built a custom door for the attic and I love how it turned out.

We are still moving in toys and getting things arranged so look for more pictures later!