Friday, April 29, 2011

Easter Day

Have I built the suspense up enough for this final post of our Easter celebrations?  I'm kidding...I thought I'd get to it sooner and it just didn't happen, but here it is, Part III of our Easter.

Because we go to church on Saturday nights, we get to start our rejoicing early.

My best girls....took quite some doing to get Avery's outfit all put together, took Amanda no time at all to select a dress from Avery's hand-me-down selection.

 ...with handsome cousin Trevor...always extra big smiles when they are in the presence of cousins. :)
 Our family, about as cleaned up as we get. :)
The next morning started quiet...I had the house to myself until about 9:30 when people started to wake up.  For the second year, I chose a brunch menu for our Easter "dinner".  Its partly selfish, since breakfast is my very favorite meal, but I think its also a good chance to do something different than the standard meat and potatoes.  Everyone pitched in and brought something and we ended up with an amazing spread that tasted even better than it looked on my pool table-turned buffet table.
 Sienna got one year-old duty in the kitchen...
The kids patiently waited and then it was finally time...Shaun explained the guidelines, and they were OFF!
 The babies were SO into was completely sweet.

 Well really, they were all into it. :)

 Shaun looking quite fine in easter colors
 Sweet Maddie

My sister Amy (blue) with her in-laws, who we are fortunate enough to call friends and extended family.
 More family!
 Shaun's mom and her granddaughter Alayna.
We were surprised to see my dad and Kiki...they came after "only" doing three services that day, eight for the weekend in total...busy time for pastors!
These were the babies last year and we remember saying next year they will be up and running around.
Sure enough, they are one year bigger and more definitely running around.  These three are actually pretty low-key though.
Speaking of big kids, Colombo and Jared were hard at work with the scavenger hunt that Uncle Nathan put together for him.
While we were all together we celebrated three April birthdays

It was a great family day...very relaxed and enjoyable...and warm!  So thankful we serve a risen Savior!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Passion of the King

 Shaun and the girls had the privilege of being a part of our church's production Passion of the King.  Rehearsals started in February and they worked hard.  The three of them loved being a part of it and truly have a heart for this ministry.  What a blessing to see!

Avery did the kid's scene last year and did great and both she and Amanda just expected that since Amanda was four this year, she'd be a part also.  Shaun and I weren't so sure, after her Nutcracker episode.  She did more than ok, though.  She did great and touched many, many lives, both in the cast and in the audience.  We think of her as nearly equal to Avery in age around here and expect a lot of her, but up on stage she seemed like such a little girl.

Avery stepped out of her comfort zone, too and did a few extra parts.  By the end, she was all warmed up! :)

We had several discussions about the play and how it was "pretend".  It took the girls a while to sort out what and who was real and what was just part of the play.

Shaun took them to nearly all the rehearsals and performances and so the three of them had established a routine.  On the last night, Shaun had to stay extra late to pack up the sound equipment so I took the kids.  When we got in the shuttle bus to retrieve the car, Amanda was talking to the driver and said, May I please have the song?  He smiled, said yes and quickly adjusted his ipod to a kid's song, which he and the kids sang together.  It was pretty funny.  Amanda also informed me that Daddy always take them to Dunkin Donuts for munchkins.  Wow, Aiden and I missed out on so much! :)

Also, since I wasn't there and Shaun was tied up with his responsibilities, two teenage girls each took one of my girls under their wing and made sure they were in their costume and got signed in to the right classroom.  Again, they established routines, one of Amanda's was going to see the lamb.  Wish I had pictures of that!

 She had the honor of being carried in by Jesus.  I have no idea where she learned it, but she had the Miss America wave down pretty good.

 Shaun's mom was in the ensemble... were four cousins (Maddie is in green).

 They were thrilled to get flowers from their brother at the final performance.

They made many friends along the way (cousin Trevor).  These next two I took from facebook...thanks Brittany and Corey.

The girls made great memories, touched lives and I'm so thankful they had this experience.

Here's the big kids scene, in case you are interested.  You'll see Avery at the very beginning getting carried in and Amanda at the very end being led away.  Cousin Nathanael is Shepard Boy David.

He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 18:2-4

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Wrap-Up, Part I

We've had such a fantastic Easter season and I want to document all of it, its just going to take more than one post...probably three.  

I guess we officially kicked it off last Monday.  We all met at my mom's, my three siblings, my brother's wife and all our 15 children.  It was the first time the four of us had been back to the house together since ??  Years.  At one point the four of us were sitting around the kitchen table and I had a major flashback!

 Grandma's always in high demand.

Controled chaos, as we like to call it.

 My favorite egg of the day...Levi's

 After decorating about nine dozen eggs, the kids gathered for an plastic egg hunt.  Colombo got passed the torch of egg hider.
 My mom has a great yard on a quiet road...perfect!

 The kids found over $70 that will be donated to the Kitchen of Love in Guatemala, which helps to feed children.  So cool to have them be a part of something bigger than themselves.
 Tim must have had food...all the 2009 guys are gathered. :)