Saturday, December 3, 2011


I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. We sure did.  Before Thanksgiving we had a few activities.  First we made a thankful tree.  We each wrote on a leaf something(s) we were thankful for.  My niece did a really cute one on her blog: check it out. I am not much into crafts, and to some the end result of my creation won't surprise you!

Oh, and a couple of random pictures from the kids.
Nov 19 2011

Nov 19 2011 Haley

The night we did the tree.  Sunday nights we listen to a General Conference talk and have a treat.  I made cupcakes that night.
Nov 20 2011 Elden

Nov 20 2011

Nov 20 2011 Shanna

Nov 20 2011 Cal Ruth Clark

Nov 20 2011 Clark Ruth

Nov 20 2011 Haley Shanna

I took pictures of everyone else, I had to snap one of Lee.
Nov 20 2011 Lee

The following night we went to an activity at the school: Long Ago Night.  There was dinner, crafts, games, story-telling, wagon rides, displays, Native American was a fun night!  I was especially glad because I got to see some ladies from the community and meet some parents!
Nov 21 2011 night at school

Wagon ride...
Nov 21 2011 Shanna Cal Haley Clark wagon ride

Nov 21 2011 night at school (3)

Nov 21 2011 Cal and Lee

The next day our visitors arrived!  Daniel, Amy, Lois and Jeff and their families came for Thanksgiving. The day before Thanksgiving I finished off the pumpkin pies.  I made 10 this year.  I had already done the crusts, just had to make the filling and bake them. Shanna loved helping me and we made a big mess. I had a lot of fun baking and prepping stuff for Thanksgiving day.  I was quite surprised myself!
Nov 23 2011 Shanna, making pie

Nov 23 2011 pumpkin pie

Nov 23 2011 Shanna

Lois and Jeff took their turn in the kitchen too.  Lois made an oh so good cranberry pie.  I am going to make it for Christmas..that's how much I liked it! Here is the recipe from the Virtual Goodie Plate.
Nov 23 2011 Jeff and Lois

We had a fun time with the turkey.  We had to defrost it and I should have started on it sooner, oh well.  There is always next year!  Lee and Lois got the turkey thawed out and Lee cooked it.  It turned out great, though we ate a little later than planned. I should never set a time for eating on Thanksgiving! Thanks Lois and Jeff for buying the turkey!

Here are the kids (minus two) before the dinner.  I thought it was funny how they were all gathered round.
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Ila Lizzy Shanna Cal Anthon Haley Clark Reed

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Ila Lizzy Shanna Cal Anthon Haley Clark Reed (2)

For as long as I can remember, before we eat our Thanksgiving meal we have a blessing on the food and we each say three things we are thankful for.  Ila gave each person three kernels of corn on their plate to represent the three things they're thankful for.
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Anthon Lizzy Rachel

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Amy Snaile Lee Jeff

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Anothon Elden Ila

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Elden Clark Ila

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Cal

After dinner and cleaned up, we went to the park for the annual race.  Another tradition I grew up with is having a race before eating pie.  Then the winner gets their own pie.  This year we let the winner pick the first piece of pie.  The track/walk-way that we are on is 1/4 mile.  Most of the kids ran the whole thing, which was fun.  I jogged around with Elden. We need Sheldon around to do a real race with the adults.
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day the race (3)

Lizzy won the race!
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day the race (2)

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Clark

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Cal (2)

Pie!!! Along with the pumpkin and cranberry Lois also made a chocolate pie and a key lime pie.  The key lime pie we ate later with just the adults.
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day eating pie

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Rachel and Daniel

Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Lee

Later that evening Lee and I went out shopping to Walmart.  We bought a vacuum for his practice.  The van was parked at 9:58 and when we looked at the clock again, at 10:18 we were already on our way home about a 1/2 mile from Walmart.  Pretty fast! I have always had good experiences with Walmart and Black Friday shopping.  Once we got home and I slept for about 45 minutes, Lois, Ila and I went out shopping again.  We had a great time.  We first stopped at Kohl's, arriving a little after 1am.  Lois and I picked out what we wanted, then I left.  Ila and Lois stayed behind to stand in the long, slow line while I sat outside in front of Belk's.  Belk's gave away gift cards to the first 250 customers. The $ amounts ranged from $5 - $1000 at each store.  Is it worth going out so early sitting in the cold waiting for $5 gift card? Probably not, but it was sure fun.  I chatted on the phone with my sister, ate a little snack and had fun talking to the lady next to me.  I was bundled up and quite warm.  Lois and I each received a $5 gift card and Ila got a $25 gift card!!!  It was SO COOL!  Definitely the highlight of the morning.  It was even more fun because Ila gave it to her mom for her birthday.  But Amy thought it would only be for $5.  So, so fun.  I brought my double stroller with us, and boy was that a great idea!  It was wonderful putting all of our stuff on/in it-especially the super cute boots Lois bought. We went to several stores, 11 in total.  We got home about 8:30 in the morning.  We slept a lot that day and relaxed. I can't wait till next year!

That night Lois, Jeff, Lee and I went on a double date.  Thanks for babysitting the sleeping kids! First we went on a walk to the Miller-Kite house that is supposedly haunted.  We stopped by the office first and showed Lois and Jeff in person how it looks.  Then on to the house.
Nov 25 2011 MillerKite House Elkton VA

Though we didn't see Stonewall Jackson's ghost, I did see a cat which scared me and then right as we were going home a cop pulled over a car.  Kind of creepy! After we went home, we left again and went to Food Lion to buy some stuff.  It was a fun night, ending up with eating the key lime pie and talking till after 1am.
Nov 24 2011 Thanksgiving Day Nove 25 2011

Saturday we went to a park.  We had great weather over Thanksgiving!
Nov 26 2011 Elden

Nov 26 2011 Reed Haley

Nov 26 2011 Shanna Ila Cal

Nov 26 2011 Rachel Shanna

Nov 26 2011 Rachel Shanna (2)

Nov 26 2011 Jeff Clark

Everyone stayed through Saturday night.  Amy's birthday was on Sunday so we had a little surprise party for her.  I made homemade brownies. 
Nov 26 2011

Nov 26 2011 celebrating Amy's birthday

Happy Birthday Amy!

Nov 26 2011 celebrating Amy's birthday (2)

I thought it was so cute that Elden was snuggling with Jeff.
Nov 26 2011 Jeff Elden

After everyone left and we were cleaning up I was sad that everyone was gone.  What I kept thinking of that I was most thankful for this Thanksgiving was family. For Thanksgiving dinner we had someone from our ward/church over that hasn't had a great family life. After our little race we had a neighbor over who is living alone as his wife passed away a few years ago. He does have a sister nearby which is nice.  But thinking about it, I am so thankful for my big wonderful family. I love that we get together often throughout the year and I love that most of us (whoever can) get on google+ video chat every Sunday night.  It's so fun to stay connected and have loving relationships with each other. What a lonely journey life would be without loving family and friends.

While I am blogging, I'll just update everything else because I don't have pictures. A couple of nights ago the town had a tree lighting activity and a visit from Santa.  We saw them light the tree and had cookies and hot chocolate, but it was pretty cold and I took three kids home.  Haley didn't want to see Santa, Cal just wanted to go home, and Elden had to come home by default. Clark was going to see Santa--which didn't end up happening, but Shanna did.  I am boring and have told my kids about Santa so I really didn't care if anyone saw him.  I'll tell the details if anyone cares.  Anyway, Shanna did go and see him (wouldn't sit on his lap) and brought home a fun "gift" bag.  I am almost positive that my kids are going to want to go see him next year...

Work is going well for Lee. It was great because he accepts Daniel's insurance and did eye exams on everyone while they were here.  I am glad Daniel and Amy used Lee as their eye doctor! Things are going well at Walmart too.  I feel very blessed that Lee has that extra job!

We are at the tail end of our Christmas shopping.  There wasn't/isn't much to do this year, which makes it simple.  There are still a few odds and ends to take care of, but not much.  Sadly this year we won't be sending out Christmas cards.  I love sending out cards, but with just starting the process of buying a business it won't happen this Christmas.   I will be updating my yearly Christmas blog though. As time has passed in our marriage it seems that our "standard" of living keeps regressing--mostly by choice to jump start other financial goals. I am thankful that Lee goes along with my crazy ideas...and that we have shared goals for the future.  It has been a great time though to reflect on my many blessings. I also appreciate the time to teach our children that sometimes the whole family has to sacrifice and that they as children have many things to be grateful for.

Monday night we decorated for Christmas and have been constantly listening to Christmas songs.  Last night for family movie night we watched a Christmas movie and I am excited to watch more! I hope all of you are enjoying your holiday season!  It's been great receiving holiday cards in the mail.  Also, I am so excited for the First Presidency Christmas Devotional tomorrow night! go to to watch it live at 6pm mountain time. Oh, and one last thing, we stole this idea from Lois...we are opening a book each night to read as a family.  Some of the Christmas/Winter books we've already read before, but it will be fun to do. Not sure we'll make it all the way to Christmas because I don't think I have that many books. 

Happy Holidays!


Dean and Elaine said...

We loved seeing all the pics of your fabulous Thanksgiving holiday. What wonderful memories you are making! Have a very Merry Christmas and a great 2012! I was reading your blog at exactly the time the First Presidency was giving their Christmas Devotional so I immediately tuned in. Thank You!

Lois said...

What a fun post!!! Thanksgiving was SO much fun! Thank's for being such great hosts!