Our Family

Our Family
Benaiah, Justin, Melinda, Abishai, Keturah, and Jared

Monday, December 19, 2016

Day 352: Christmas, Take 1

Once again, going to church on Saturday evening, makes Sunday feel weird.  But we had the added bonus of doing our first family Christmas exchange for the year.  (We'll have two more.)  It was a simple gift exchange, but it was sweet.  And then all the kids and guests played or watched electronics.  We did get to some other fun projects, though, and the boys went to their youth group holiday party tonight as well.  I'm a bit tired (and this is a day late) from having guests all weekend, so I'll let the pictures do the talking.

At least my four babies still fit on the couch together.  That video game must be pretty fascinating!

Pyro guy starting a fire loaded with coconut oil with a blowtorch.  Yes, that's my man in action, bwahahaha!

Having fun with Big Brother!

Keturah played Santa and gave out presents.  Everyone stayed in their pjs as they opened gifts.  Stefanie loves to orgnaize her life with pieces of paper like sticky notes, so I gave her all my leftover sticky notes.

Stefanie and Auggie gave Abishai a Thomas the Tank Engine back pack, a couple of cars, an ABC Thomas puzzle, a hooded Thomas toddler towel, and brought back a special blanket with Thomas on it.

Grandma Howell made this blanket for Justin when he was 3 or so.  We let Auggie borrow it and now it's back for Abishai to use!  It took a couple tries, but he now sleeps with it in his crib.  Yeah!

"Say cheese!" Oh Benaiah, the goofball.  Stefanie gave him one of our favorite pictures of them together from a visit years ago.

Pretty necklaces for mission trips around the world!

To Stef From Stef was on the tag because she made this extra long scarf herself on the weaving loom.

I finished the Howell stocking in time for Auggie to have one!  I just made a new name "plate" and covered up another name that wasn't needed anymore (like an old boyfriend).

Stefanie brought back several of our toddler puzzles too!

Yes, Stefanie makes the cutest reindeer from "Open Season."

The start of the cherry winks, THE most important Christmas cookie for a Howell Christmas.  Sugar cookie with dates, rolled in wheaties, cornflakes, or some other crunchy cereal (crushed) and topped with a piece of cherry.  I make them every year.  Benaiah cut the cherries this year.

Playing board games!  Othello, a Howell favorite!

Auggie is great at playing by himself or playing with the kids.  I love how he sits.  I can't sit like that.

Puzzle time!

Some watched "Elf" again and some used their phones to watch something or play a game.  Part of our laidback day.

More Othello.

Crushing up cornflakes for the cherry winks.


Putting the cherries on!

Howell tradition with a twist.


Low carb, sugar free cookie.  I did use regular butter, so I can't claim it was dairy free.

Fancy photography!  Go me!

Yum-O!

All the handstitching on Justin's/Abishai's quilt was done by my mom.

50 years of practice gets you to this perfetction.

Time for girlie time with Aunt Stefanie.

Pretty nails.

Oh no! He took the cherries off the uncooked cookies and ate them!  Then I couldn't find the 2nd jar of cherries I thought I had to, so some were baked without the cherries.  Whoops!

Story time with Aunt Stefanie on the last evening of their visit.  They leave super early in the morning, flight at 7am, so they left at 5am.  And the wonderful hubby too them to the airport for me, especially since the windchill was -8F today.  I just don't like/can''t go out in the cold everyday.  It makes me tense up and then I hurt a ton.  Anyway, snuggle time with family is the best!

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