Dec 29, 2008


After the baptism we went out to eat at Chili's and returned home for some board games. Dax really doesn't like this one but he was a good sport and played one game. We continued on without him and forced him to take some goofy pictures.

Uh-oh! The game has taken a turn for the worst! Not really.

We tried taking a couple of shots you might normally see on the box top- everyone having an unrealistic amount of fun. I'm sure poor Kayla thought we were nuts.
So silly! The three of us haven't been together since last Christmas and I had so much fun with them. I miss them so much and I'm so glad they got to come. Merry Christmas!! Dax's family comes in at the end of this week so we are excited about that too.

Chloe's Baptism

Chloe had her baptism on Sunday afternoon! We wait about 40 days after birth since tradition says that is when Jesus was presented at the temple. Also 40 is a pretty prevalent number in Christianity. Noah's ark...Jesus fasting in the desert...etc. Choe's middle name is Rebecca and her patron saint is Rebecca wife of Isaac in the Old Testament.

Father Justin says the opening prayers. I do not hold Chloe during the service since her sponsers (or godparents) do that. Chloe and Hannah have Paige and Robert Lush as their sponsers but they had a baby themselves on Christmas Eve so Anna stood in for them.

The dunking! Nerve wracking to watch but it was quick.

She puts on her baptismal gown and tiny cross.

Now she is annointed with oil- chrismated. He says, " The seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit" each place he brushes her.

Now she is tonsured. A tiny bit of hair is cut from the top, sides, and back of her head. Hair is the symbol of strength and is offered to the church.

Now Chloe is "churched" and carried around the nave and up to the royal doors. Overall she did very well and was only a bit fussy as any baby would be. Congratulations Chloe!

The Ryan family.

The Stokes family. We had one with Anna too but she was chopped so we'll have to get one from another camera.

Close-up and everyone is happy.

December 27

On Saturday my dad and Dax graciously watched the kids while all the girls went to the mall.
We took a family picture before we left. We had a great time shopping and having lunch. We talked about how much more pleasant it was than when my mom took us all out as kids- a totally different story!

The girls having fun in the leaves before we left for the day.

If there is one thing we like to do it's taking goofy pictures. Melody is having a dance with the wicked witch of the west in a snowglobe store.

Forget dancing, she's stealing my purse!!

Later my dad treated us to a movie. We saw The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and all of us agreed that we really enjoyed it. Lots to think about after you see that movie. I'm surprised I walked out with dry eyes but I guarantee if I saw it alone at home I would have needed a whole box of tissues.

December 26- The Ryan Family

My parents, sisters, and niece all drove down to Texas on the 26th! Hannah is helping with some last minute cleanup in the yard.


Chloe can't wait to see everyone.

Mary Beth meets Chloe!!

If you go to the archives of this blog you'll find similar pictures from last year. Every year Melody and I make a special point to wrap each other's present as hideously as possible. We were so surprised when this year we wrapped them just alike using towels! Here is my gift to her complete with a paint sample sheet and bottle top.

Her gift to me is even better (worse?)- wrapped in a bath towel and belts and she asked for both of those back- now there's a present! : )

My aunts sent gifts along with my family since we couldn't see them this year. Aunt Dianne is a master at crafts and is the one who wins all those cross stitch awards. Apparently she got a new sewing machine and actually made these stuffed animals for all the grandkids- they are amazing and look store bought- every detail is perfect.

Kayla assisting Hannah in the unwrapping.

Now my turn. Hannah started to get the hang of it. Some gifts she kind of tossed aside because she didn't really understand them in their various boxes but we'll have fun with them all.

My dad and his "claw" - a glove/icescraper.

Melody gave Hannah this little giraffe to sit on. She calls it her horse.

The 26th is also Mary Beth's birthday. She turned 26! Happy Birthday!!!

Kayla and Hannah had so much fun in the tub with the new squirty toys.

I'm so happy the cousins got to spend time together. We grew up in the same area as our cousins so we wish they lived closer together. We also wish MB's husband Chris and son Preston could have joined us but we'll see everyone soon in March.

Christmas Day

Arriving at the morning liturgy.

Two babies peeking over our shoulders at the choir.

Another failed attempt at a picture in their matching dresses. Again thanks to Nana- they were beautiful!

Chloe doesn't mind.

Merry Christmas from the Stokes family!

Nana and her girls.

Back at home- where's all the snow, Mommy?

Hannah plays with her talking parrot from Nana while we prepare food. Dax grilled a beef tenderloin that was delicious! He wants to smoke his first turkey when his side of the family visits. I made my aunt's cheese potato recipe which turned out well too.

Chloe likes her gift too.

Hannah and her musical toys.

Slam dunk! The food and company was great. We all had a lovely little Christmas at home.


Christmas Eve

Chloe is ready for her first Christmas.

We always exchange an ornament gift on Christmas Eve. Hannah goes first....

Apparently she's not pleased! Explanation: Hannah has a box of jingle bells she really loves so I found an ornament of mini-bells formed into a wreath that look just like her own bells. I guess I wasn't thinking much like a kid. Hannah was upset because we couldn't open each little bell! : )

My snowman, Dax's Santa, Hannah's bells, and Chloe's snowman.

Me gritting my teeth when, still upset, Hannah refuses to pose for a picture in their matching Christmas tree dresses. They were awfully cute. Thanks Nana!

Off to the Christmas Eve Vigil.

Late that night we started cooking our very first Christmas meal. I made my first apple pie!
Since I have no skills I took a couple of wrong turns but now I know how to make and roll dough.
It didn't taste half bad either. This pie was finished at 1:30am but since I live in what seems like a never ending day right now that wasn't any big deal. : )