"The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences." - Eleanor Roosevelt

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!

Nick's parents were able to watch the boys for us on New Year's Eve so it was fun to be able to go out with friends!  It was a nice reminder of how much fun it can be when Nick and I get a chance to go out together!  We had a lot of fun celebrating and the night definitely went by way too fast!  

I really don't like to see so much time pass so quickly... especially a whole year.  2014 seems like it was over pretty fast, before I could even get caught up with anything!  It proved to be an interesting year for us.  Honestly, although I am grateful for everything I have been given, 2014 seemed to test us again and again.  Health problems, work stresses, job changes, and several little things, that although little, seem to pile up pretty high when you stack them up.  I'm not complaining... At least, I'm trying not to... Again, I am grateful for everything I have been given, but I am saying goodbye to 2014 with a smile, for once.  I do believe we are stronger and more ready to meet 2015 and whatever may be thrown our way!  Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Big Boys...

The boys got some "knex" pieces to build with and they absolutely love them!  Ben had a great time making this windmill and then thinking of things to add to it!  So much fun to watch him!

Conner made this little contraption and then insisted that I find a way to attach it to him so he could fly...  He finally settled on sticking it in the back of one of his caps and wearing the cap around, but was disappointed when he still wasn't able to fly with it!

We got Conner and Ben new desks for their bedrooms for Christmas!  Here is Conner sitting at his big boy desk...  I think he was mostly excited about his new Spiderman lamp that we got for his desk! He looks so big!!!

And here is Ben at his new desk complete with his very own Ninja Turtle lamp!  He sat here for a while saying he needed to do some work and check some emails!  Such a big boy!

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas in Conrad!

On Saturday afternoon, we headed to Conrad to celebrate Christmas with Nick's family!  The boys are always so excited to see their cousins!  They were also thrilled that they had more presents waiting for them!  Mama and Papa got the boys a new race track, so after opening up all of our presents, the guys set up the race track so the kids could race!  We had a great dinner together and spent the rest of the evening playing with all the new toys!  On Sunday, the boys got in some more play time and soon it was time to head back home!  Thank you to Mama and Papa for another wonderful Christmas!

We had to get out a few new toys when we got home!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

New Legos...

This morning, we got out some new Lego sets to build.  (We love Legos!)  We had fun waiting for Dad to get off work so we could go to Mama's and Papa's house to celebrate Christmas with Nick's family!  Conner (and I) built a Ninja Turtle hangout and Ben (and I) built a superhero vehicle of some kind!

Friday, December 26, 2014

New Toys...

We came home today and the boys had to get out a new toy this evening, so they chose their remote control cars.  The boys had great fun racing these little cars around tonight!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

It doesn't get any better than Christmas morning!  Especially with these 5 kiddos!  Presents from Santa and stockings came first!  Then it was time to dig into the huge pile of presents under the Christmas tree!  Merry Christmas!!!

Later in the afternoon, Nana and Gramps had a wonderful Christmas dinner for all of us and some kids (and adults) had a little nap time!  My brother Josh decided to rest with my brother-in-law Curt for a few minutes!  After all the excitement of the day, we enjoyed a fun evening all together!  We all had a fantastic Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve!

Conner and Ben were ready to travel to Bettendorf on Christmas Eve, just in time for church where they got to be angels!  (They loved that!)  After church, we took lots of family photos, enjoyed a yummy dinner, courtesy of Nana, and enjoyed spending time with my parents, my sister's family, and my brother's family.  The boys made sure Santa had some cookies and milk and then were ready for some sleep so that Santa could come!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Our Christmas!

Today is December 23 and it has become our custom to open our presents to each other on this day!  The boys were (obviously) beyond excited to finally get to open some of those presents!

Nick, Conner, Ben and I loved all of our gifts!  We had a fun night together!  The boys were pumped about their new "big boy" desks and also about the special lamps that they got to go on the desks!  Merry Christmas to my guys!  Can't believe it's here already!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Feels Like Christmas!

We wanted to get a picture of our house all lit up complete with our very own "Charlie Brown" tree!  Nick did a great job decorating the house this year!  Our Christmas tree is finally decorated and filled with wrapped presents just in time!  It finally feels like Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Visit to Santa...

On Friday evening we went to Dad's store because we heard that Santa was going to be there!  Now, in past years, Ben has had an issue with sitting with the big guy, so we talked about it on our way there and as soon as we spotted that sleigh, Ben ran right up to it and climbed on in with Santa!  I was ecstatic... then looked around and realized that Conner had taken off running... luckily Nick was there so he grabbed Conner, but Conner absolutely refused to sit with Santa!  So, we got a great picture of Ben with Santa this year, but no picture of Conner!!!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Happy Birthday, Brecken!

Today, we traveled to Davenport to celebrate the first birthday of our nephew, Brecken!   Ben fell asleep briefly on our way there so I had to snap a quick picture of him with his glasses.  We got to celebrate with Brecken and watch him (kinda) eat his cake and open all of his presents!  He is such a cutie!  Happy 1st Birthday, sweet Brecken!