Sunday, December 22, 2013

December So Far...

We got a Christmas Bonus of beef this year! Daddy and the boys spent the evening of December 12th
wrapping bulk meat into food saver packages.

Store packages waiting to be shrink wrapped for freezer storage.
We haven't had beef for years--we'll be livin' large this year!

On December 13th--Aunt Sara's birthday & St. Lucia Day--
James sang in the 2nd grade Christmas program.

On Saturday December 14th we enjoyed our annual Ward Christmas Breakfast, then headed out for Helena to have a Cousin Party at Aunt Laura's new house. Aunt Lisa was visiting from Phoenix, and Uncle Matt's family came even though he was working (he stopped by in his police cruiser for some dinner-to-go). It was such a fun evening and we are so happy for Laura and Darrin and their great new home!
Aunt Laura & Lisa picked out matching jammies for all the grown-up mamas.
Here's Aunt Lisa in hers giving Heidi a big hug.

Laura and Lisa celebrated their birthday a few days early. Amie brought them an
amazing chocolate cake and Heidi made them cupcakes from scratch!

Niles loved the cupcakes!

cake monster!

We did a fun white elephant gift exchange.
Here's Niles opening gifts with Cody's girlfriend, Kamrie.

James opened a cool mini-air hockey table from Jared.

Heidi & Jake ended up exchanging gifts and gave each other practically the same thing!

Niles and Emily had the most fun with this big box, which was full of toilet paper!

Niles & Emily
(Em is 7 months older than Niles)

All the Mamas in their Christmas jammies:
Amie (Matt's wife, my SIL), Me, Kamrie (my nephew's g-friend), my sisters Lisa, and Laura.

Three Layton Seesters

Niles loved looking at all the photos on Laura's tree.

We brought Uncle Mike Melin along for the fun.

Kamrie,  nephew Cody, Baby Zecklin, and Gramma Lisa

Gramma Lisa talking to Baby Z

We had such a nice time! Thanks again, Lehmans!

Our living room in the morning light (snowy glare) on December 17th.

Heidi sang in the fourth grade Christmas program on December 18th.
That's her in back with her arm up.

Two classes of 4th graders singing their hearts out.

Grandma Melin came to see Heidi's program
and Niles wore his elf hat. They all looked
so Christmas-y!

Later that night, we went to a Christmas party at the Depot.
Here's Niles waiting fro Santa.

Heidi waiting for Santa.

Heidi with Santa

James with Santa

Niles telling Santa how old he is.

Heidi got some cool gifts.
Addie was out on a hayride caroling with the Young Women...
such a festive day for us!

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Thanksgiving Week

Our week of fun began Monday when Grandpa and Grandma Melin brought our Gray cousins home from
Boise to visit. We had dinner and family night on Monday and the kids were so happy to be reunited!

We had a great TG dinner at the ranch at which I took no pictures. Trust me, it was great. After dinner, Rich & Mike went to grab some Black Friday stuff and the kid and I came home and set up the Christmas Tree and watched "Elf." Friday morning I did some sewing and mailed some packages. Rich and Mike entertained the kid and put up outdoor lights. The girls made a gingerbread house. I love this picture because you can see Mike reading Christmas books with James and Niles playing the piano. Life is GOOD at Casa Melin!

I love my crafty girls!

Daddy set up the Christmas Train for the boys.

Friday evening Mike, Angie, Jex and the kids came over for dinner. Ang & Jex brought huge pizzas from 49er Diner. Danny was pretty excited! The cousins slept over that night and had  a pretty fun time, then they headed home on Saturday. It was such a nice visit.

Today (Sunday) we had a Thanksgiving do-over and made some things we missed on Thursday: Cranberry-walnut spinach salad, stuffing, and sweet potatoes from scratch with marshmallows. We also cooked a turkey breast and gravy--it was DELICIOUS! Addie also made two pumpkin pies and Heidi made Rolo turtles. Such a yummy meal.

My Two Thanksgiving HAMS!


Dear Loved Ones,               The past two weeks have been a whirlwind for us…and now we are 8! We got a new German daughter, Kristin...