Saturday, December 31, 2011

School Christmas Party #2!

After the white capes & red bows, most of the classes have their Christmas party. S&B are now too old for their mother to snoop around the parties with the camera, but I was able to help out a little with Becca’s party and snap a few pictures as well!




The parents of the students in Miss K’s class pooled their money together and bought her a new tall conductor’s chair…she has had one since she started teaching, but this fall it gave out on her. Her reaction to the card with the picture and the poem telling her about the chair was priceless! I think she was surprised and excited and blessed!


She’s showing Becca the card and the picture of the chair which will be assembled and waiting for her when she gets back from Christmas break. We can’t wait to see it either!

Friday, December 30, 2011

White Capes & Red Bows

Absolutely one of my favorite days of the year…the elementary Christmas program. Since the beginning of time (or at least since I was in elementary school), white capes & red crepe paper bows have been the traditional dress of elementary school children at the annual Christmas program. It’s corny and amazingly awesome and beautiful.

This year, I was WORKING on the day of the program, so I had the honor of escorting my kindergarteners over to the high school gym and helping them get their coats off before they ascended the bleachers and found their seat. This also meant that I was not able to be in the gym at the crack of dawn to save seats for the rest of my family. Ed had that duty this year and he did quite well – 4th row, center aisle. Good job, dear! Anyway, I *did* get to sit in the front row and so had a great view of certain things – not so great of other things, as you can see from the pictures!


These are my sweet Kindergarteners! I say “my”, but I’m just an aide in their classroom…but I still call them “my class.” I absolutely adore and love each and every one of them. I took this shot just after they all sat down and were waiting for the other Kindergarteners to come and fill in the bleachers below.


This, however, is my favoritist Kindergartener of all! Look at that corny grin – window in her mouth and flyaway hair. Love. it. all.


My sweet 2nd grader with one of her BFF’s!


She was ready to sing and boy, did she! Sang her heart out to *every* song!

Watch the entire elementary sing “For Unto us a Child is Born” here.


Here are all the Kindergarteners!

Watch the Kindergarteners sing “Gloria in Excelsis Deo” here. This was written just for them BY their music teacher!


Here’s Becca singing “Hot Chocolate” – obviously one of the favorites of the kids. I don’t have a video link for that one, but I’m asking around.

Watch the 2nd graders sing “Where did He come from?” here.


See – I didn’t have great angles to get shots of the many other kids we know in the program…this is one of the best.


During the last song, “Ere Zij God”, Becca & her BFF smiled and stared at each other the entire time. It was so cute. Later, her BFF’s mom told me that her daughter said, “I looked at Becca through that whole song because that song makes Becca cry and I wanted her to keep smiling.” Awwwww. And yes, it does make us all cry. You can read about why here.

And here’s the video of this year’s version.

Until next year…

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

School Christmas Party #1

I know what you’re thinking. “She’s got 4 kids in school, plus she works in another classroom! Does that mean there’s going to be FIVE Christmas party posts? Please, NOOOOO!”

Lucky for you, I only attended TWO school Christmas parties. This here is numero uno.

Elise had her party last week Monday, Dec. 19, the day before school let out for Christmas break. Kindergarteners don’t go to school after the Christmas program, they all go home with their parents when they’re done singing, so that means Kindergarten parties have to happen a day or two beforehand. It was your typical Kindergarten Christmas party…cookie decorating, making a Christmas ornament, finger painting, good stuff!


Here we are together at the cookie decorating center!


She had to add some sprinkles to her masterpiece!


This was a “relay race” of sorts…the kids had to put on gloves, unwrap a Hershey Kiss, eat it, and then run back. But there was not really a winner…it was just for fun, of course!

Really the memorable portion of this party for me came immediately after this relay race, but unfortunately I have no pictures of it and I don’t think I still have the “evidence.” The game was to close your eyes and draw on a paper whatever the teacher read to you. She dictated the drawing of a snowman, “Draw a big circle. Now draw a smaller circle on top of the big circle” and so on. Of course they were supposed to do this with their eyes closed and so when they opened their eyes, it should look nothing like a snowman because the bits and pieces of the snowman were all over the paper. One little girl sitting on the floor next to Elise had drawn an absolutely perfect snowman. Elise’s snowman parts were all over the paper. Elise looked at her paper, then at the girl’s paper next to her (not the paper of the girl in the above photo, by the way), and back at her paper again. Then she promptly and matter-of-factly announced to the other girl, “You were peeking.”

Yes, Elise. You are correct. Her paper has a perfect snowman because she was peeking. But let’s go have a talk about not saying everything that pops into our brains, shall we?

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Miracle on Main Street

On December 18, the youth of our church presented a fabulous Christmas musical, “Miracle on Main Street”, under the great direction of Amy VDB & Jill S. It was such fun to watch how these kids learned the songs and their parts over the course of the fall and then put on their show! I had an especially great time because it was one of few times that the girls have participated in something like this and I was totally uninvolved! LOL! I was so proud of the girls and ALL the Sunday School kids and so grateful for all the teachers and directors and parents who WERE involved, but it was pure joy to just sit and ENJOY the show! (Fair warning: this post is picture-heavy…I should have probably done a web album, but I didn’t, so just keep scrolling!)


Bethany and a few friends were the kids in the show who were trying to put on a Christmas pageant on Main Street, but were being shut down by the mayor because Christmas isn’t “PC”.


A Soloist



Our SS kids singing their hearts out! I loved watching them smile and praise Jesus! The little boy in green in the front row was so adorable to watch – he watched Elise and copied all her motions!


Even Sarah had a part as the mayor’s daughter, a young mom.



This picture makes me smile! Look at that cute dimple in Sarah’s cheek! She reminds me of Ed’s mom in this picture.


Miss Becca had her first public solo (she’s had MANY solos in the privacy of our own home and in the shower, of course!) and she did a beautiful job! I’m so proud of her.



Bethany had a solo on the first verse of “Go Light Your World.” Loved listening to her sing, again.


Some cute boys with some cute lines.


These twins did a marvelous job on their narration.



The cutest Nativity I’ve ever seen. Great work, costume ladies! That blonde shepherd is my favorite.



There was one adult IN the performance – Mr. V played the part of the mayor. He did great and was very entertaining to watch! In case you’re wondering how the play turns out, the kids go door to door to try to get the people to change the mayor’s mind. They meet the mayor’s daughter and she tells him to let the pageant go on. He does, and of course is so moved by the story of Christmas that he vows to allow it every year, and he wants to be IN the pageant in the future, even if it does cost him votes!



“Incredible, Wonderful, Beautiful Miracle of GOD!”

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Goodies

I had several projects and ideas in the works for this Christmas season. Most of them I did finally accomplish…not all, but most. There aren’t pictures of everything, but of most things, at least. Also included in this post are some other odds and ends that don’t fit anywhere else, but are important, in one way or another, to me.


Over my birthday weekend we went to a craft show at the ferry terminal and it was already decorated for Christmas. I loved some of these old-fashioned ornaments.



Teacher gifts this year included this Chai Loaf and Vanilla Chai Tea Mix (which also went to a few neighbors).



My crafty friend Tam made this ornament for a birthday gift! I love it and love having it hang on my perfect tree!


The girls helped me finish the blankets for their DeJong cousins.


We made some M&M cookies and Christmas cut-out cookies for both us and for some neighbors and friends. Those cut-out cookies are absolutely the best ever. The recipe calls for sour cream and it makes the fluffiest, softest cut-out cookies ever. Topped with homemade powdered sugar frosting, they are (and unfortunately irresistible).


We’ve also gone swimming with friends, shopped, crafted more projects, relaxed together, had family game night, movie night, & driven around to see Christmas lights over this holiday season. Still to come: The Nutcracker Ballet in Seattle with my parents for the girls, a walk through the Gallery Walk of Faith in Bellingham, time with friends, and more hanging out!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

A blessed Christmas to you


Our prayer for each of you is that you will know this Jesus, this Messiah, whose birth we celebrate today, and know that He was born for you. To live, love, teach, die, & be raised in order to save YOU. Because He is our Redeemer and Savior. Because He is Mighty God and He. Loves. You. May our Prince of Peace be your Light & King & Lord today and throughout the new year ahead!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

End of the season

Sarah’s basketball season ended pretty well. She improved, though not as much as she wanted to, but she’s far too hard on herself. The team went undefeated and, more importantly, grew & matured in both their knowledge of the game and the concept of teamwork. I was really impressed with the coach and his dedication and we are thankful Sarah had this opportunity to play basketball for her school. We’re not sure what the future holds as far as basketball for her, since running is what she loves and excels at so far, and basketball season in high school falls during the school musical, which she might like to be involved in at some point. Whether she plays basketball for LC again or not, we’re sure God has great plans for this girl in high school!


Putting up some good defense, as usual.


Looking to pass to a teammate…


And pass complete!


Sarah saw me focus in on her while she was on the bench and decided to stick her tongue out at her mother. Never a wise choice for a teenager…


Friday, December 23, 2011

And the winner is…

uh…almost no one. Everyone who commented on the Santa post guessed Elise. One person made their guess in person and she was correct. She better get it right, considering that she’s the guilty party’s future Mother-in-law…

Yes, it was Becca. And Dee guessed it.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Great Christmas Tree Adventure of 2011

Okay, so there wasn’t anything so majorly exciting about our adventure to cut down and then decorate our Christmas tree…except that I think this year our tree is one of the prettiest we’ve ever had!

We headed east and south to our favorite tree farm, Alpine Meadows, and once there, headed towards the road since we had found a beautiful tree there in that area last year and it was not “picked over” like other areas of the farm. It wasn’t long and we had decided on our tree and so had M&D.



We have a tradition of holding up one of the girls to be the “angel” on top of the tree for the annual Christmas tree farm picture. Sarah pointed out that it had been several years since she had a turn, so Ed obliged her by picking her up so she could be the angel!


Elise thought perhaps she should haul the tree back to the cabin after we cut it down…maybe not, Elise.


Later that night, we decorated the tree, as well as our two fake trees – this little one above where I put all the girls’ snowflake pictures that my parents made with them several times or from preschool, and another skinny fake tree we bought this year for our front window.


This cracks me up! I think Elise just kissed that ornament because she was so happy to see it again! If you look closely, you can see Sarah peering at her out of the corners of her eyes. Hee hee.




Ed was the official photographer for the tree decorating event and I thought this shot was quite artsy! I’m wondering if it was Sarah’s idea…


It was also Sarah’s turn to place the tree topper on the tree. But alas! She is not tall enough to do it alone! Woo-hoo!


She needed a boost from her daddy. Thankfully Ed didn’t put his back out by picking this “child” up twice in one day! LOL!


The girls in front of our completed & beautiful tree!