John David Pate-3years old

James Daniel Pate-3years old

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tis the Season for....Christmas morning craziness!

What a beautiful morning for our family. The big girls rushed downstairs at 6am to see what surprises Santa left...and a few hours later the little kids join us. Then it was craziness for the next 4 hours..haha...Rob prepared chocolate chip muffins and sausage scrambled eggs as we all gathered around to share a yummy breakfast. We took our time opening at a time (because I am a control freak and like to take pictures and watch each child open their gifts)...and of course the boys stayed in their truck the entire time, John David saying "I go Mommy, vroom vroom" while James pushed radio buttons and danced back and forth. At one point John David said, "Uh oh Momma, I my ball" and jumped out of his truck to find his basketball, then returned to the truck and tried to bounce his basketball in the truck bed...!

Once the mad rush of gift ripping was over, the little ones went down for naps and the big girls and Rob and I piled up in our bed and watched Narnia. The snow falling outside our window made the morning extra special and memorable. Having my Dad and Rosey share these memories with us were pricelss. It has been so amazing to have their help these two weeks with the kids and house chores, but even more amazing is watching the bonds and relationships form between them and my children. John David walks around saying, "No Bubba, my RoRo" (letting James know that Rosey belongs to him)...ha...and James wants Becky instead of me because Becky will tote him all over Wal-Mart instead of riding in the shopping cart, and Ellie asked me a few nights ago how long it would be before we got to see Becky and Rosey again. Jenna told me Becky was the bestest because he didn't make them share Waffle House at all and he even let her have a fat ole breakfast for her fat belly. Claire has started counting down the days she has left with Becky and Rosey before they leave this Saturday to travel back to Utah. She even told me today, "Mommy, I don't want to play with friends right now because it wastes my time with Becky and Rosey!"

One thing is for sure, my kids adore their grandparents. They have such special memories with Becky and Rosey that I'm sure they will remember forever. It breaks my heart that we only visit with them a few times a year, but my heart is so full of memories with them, it keeps us close to them til the next time.

Our Christmas morning was wonderful. We sang Happy Birthday to Jesus and prayed for our family to be strong, safe, and serve the Lord this upcoming year. I gazed at my Christmas tree and felt such peace and joy thinking of where the Lord has brought us. We are grateful.

Tis the Season for....FAMILY FUN!

Well, here is the tradtional "gingerbread house" decorating. I decided NOT to spend 20 bucks on the store bought gingerbread kit and instead invested in a dollar box of graham crackers and whatever icing and junk I already had in the cupboard. The kids had a blast and I think Becky did too. Rosey and I just sat back and watched the chaos and loved every minute of it. The boys ate cookies for an hour. The girls painted peanut butter and icing all over graham crackers that Becky put together with chocolate bark. Claire enjoyed big girl time with her best friend Anna. Daddy got a quiet drive home during it all! Great memories and the houses lasted a good couple of days unti our elf, Elroy, tossed them in the garbage....

Tis the Season for.....BAPTISM!

December 19th was special day for sure. Claire Bear was baptised in our home church, Double Oak Community Church in Birmingham, AL. It was a glorious day and we felt so blessed to have our family there with us. The first thing Claire said to me the day she realized my dad (aka Becky) and stepmom (aka Rosey) would be here was, "OH my gosh, Mommy, Becky and Rosey get to be here to see me get baptized!" For those of you who don't know, my dad and stepmom live in Utah and only are able to visit the kids a few times a year, which makes the visits extra special and memorable when big things being baptised! It was so special to be surrounded by our family. Claire wrote down all the people who were there to be a part of her baptism in her Bible....I told Claire that morning, "Remember it all sweetheart, cause the memories of this day will remain with you forever!" and she said, "I will remember you telling me that and your breathe smelling like coffee!!"

What a precious day in our lives. To see your first born (first of five children) receive baptism completely fills your heart with such joy. I am so grateful for the relationship Claire is building with our Savior. I thank GOd for the people in her life that support her in a Christian walk.

Tis the Season...for COOKING!

My Dad and Claire Bear making marshmellows dipped in homemade caramel, rolled in crushed almonds and Rice Krispies.

One of the boys (I think John David) being silly with his gummies.

Jenna finishing up her daily meltdown preparing for nap...:)

Mixing a whole bunch of stuff (can't even remember) to make 'parking lot cookies'

We call these Jenna squares cause that is what Jenna calls them (because she made them)

Here is our "Cookie Day" with Mamaw. We gathered at her house around 11am and baked sweets ALL DAY...finishing up at about 4pm. What a fun, wonderful day of memory making. I hope each year at this time, we can all come together again to make the yummy sweet treats for Christmas family gatherings. I am so grateful my dad and stepmom were able to be a part of this special day with us. Oh and by the way, my stepmom shared an amazing recipe with me from my Aunt Sybil...for those of you who love your sweets but hate the fat and calories that come with it, try using one can of pumpkin to one box of spice cake and mix well, spoon drop some on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 15 or so min. They are like cookie yummy and very healthy:) You can also you carrot cake mix and add nuts or crainberries...but no butter, oil, or eggs needed.

First Hair Cuts!

Two really good things come out of your mother-in-law having the ability to cut little boy hair....
1. You don't have to pay somebody to do it!
2. You don't have to worry with a double meltdown in a nice salon where all is quiet!

Here are the pics from the boys' first hair cuts...thankfully, no tears or fits. They sat on their stool in front of the TV and watched Polar Express with a big ole sucker while Mamaw gave them their first trim (CUT)...

I didn't cry, but wanted to, just thinking of their precious baby hair being chopped away..but I do really love the sweetness of the "little boy" hair cut instead of all the shaggy baby hair.

And I am VERY thankful Mamaw can cut hair!

Sunday, December 19, 2010


We celebrated the boys' 2nd birthday today. It was a wonderful celebration with family and friends. We enjoyed a super great birthday party at Legacy Gymnastics (which by the way, anybody in the Hoover/Pelham area needing a remarkable place for a birthday party, but don't want to pay 300$ for a pump it up party, you should book your party at from ages 2-10 played for 2 hours and had such an awesome time)...everyone had a blast. Running and jumping into foam pits and flying off of the trampoline track, climbing ropes and sliding was crazy fun. The highlights are above... pictures tell all...The boys loved their cookie cake and gifts from our family and friends.

I won't ever live through their birthday (even with all the giggles, screaming, laughing, playing, cake and ice cream) and not reminisce on the day their were born and how fearful I was for their lives and future. I will never forget the emotion. I can close my eyes and remember it so freshly. I still see the bright lights and smell the hand sanitizer of the NICU. I can remember the sounds of each beeping machine and what each red light, green light and yellow light signified. I have visual memory I will NEVER forget. As I watched them run around playing, laughing, enjoying their 'birthday' with all the folks that prayed so hard for their existence, I stood in awe and I have said many time before, God didn't have to spare their lives, he didn't do it for me or Rob or anyone in our family...He did it for HIS glory and we thank Him for His miracle....then, now and forever.

Happy Birthday sweet Miracle Boys...You are growing up so fast.