Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Ethan has some new words!

We've added bubbles, Mama, and let's go to the slowly growing vocabulary!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas Morning

We miss you Mimi and Gran and Granddad! Hope you had a happy Christmas morning!
We had to wake Carrie, our early riser, so we could go open presents!

When Carrie saw Santa earlier last week, I heard her tell him that she wanted a Barbie for Christmas. She doesn't have any Barbies yet, but has played with them at her cousins' house. So I was thrilled, because some friends of ours had given us some toys that their kids had outgrown and among them was a whole box of Barbies with lots of extra clothes! (Thank you April Brice! You made Santa look good this year!)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Carrie's Preschool Christmas Party

Today was Carrie's Christmas Party at school. They got to wear their pajamas and see Santa. He gave them all coloring books and candy canes. It was all very exciting!
Ethan got to see Santa too - from a safe distance firmly seated on Daddy's knee!
Carrie is still the tallest one in her class!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Christmas Photo Shoot

We took some pictures for our Christmas cards this week. Personally, I think I deserve a medal for getting even one good picture of the two-year-old. Don't be fooled by the cuteness in the pictures - it was NOT easy! Here's a sneak peek!

Ethan's 2nd Birthday

Ethan's friends from church, Abigail and Nate, and our neighbor Jenny came to help us celebrate the big 2! We had a great time and then everyone went home to take a nap. Who would imagine an outdoor party that warm in December - that's Florida!

Early Christmas Present from Mimi!

Bob's mom got the kids a small trampoline for Christmas and we got permission to give it to them early so they could use it for Ethan's birthday party today. It was a beauitiful day - 80 degrees and partly cloudy! They absolutely love jumping on the trampoline! This video is of the big surprise when we showed it to them this morning. I was expecting jumping up and down excitement when they saw it for the first time, but I think they were so surprised, they were stunned!

You probably noticed that the trampoline is smaller and shorter than the standard ones. It is awesome. It doesn't have springs and its only 2 feet off the ground. We love it! If you are curious, you can see it at walmart's website. Here's a link:

Friday, November 30, 2007

Luke 2:8-11

Take 1 - Oops, mom had the camera turned sideways...(So that only works for picture-taking and not so well for video!)

Take 2 - Carrie had a little trouble concentrating and sitting still in this one!

Take 3 - I think this is as good as it's going to get today! Enjoy!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Happy Birthday Granddad!

Have a great day Granddad!

We love you, Carrie, Ethan, Amy and Bob

Sunday, October 7, 2007

New Verbage

Again, we have no idea what any of this means, but it's just so cute! He keeps trying to grab the camera so he can see himself on the viewfinder. The sort of thing a monkey would do...and the sounds are similar too!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Songs, Laughs, and Kisses

Carrie wanted to share a new song that she learned while we were traveling last week. "Have patience, have patience, don't be in such a hurry. When you get impatient, you only start to worry. Remember, remember that God is patient too. Just think of all the times that others have to wait on you!"

This is a great tickling by Dad. We love that belly laugh!

We had an interesting conversation with Ethan while playing with playdough yesterday. No, I have no idea what he's talking about. He has learned how to make a kissing sound now, but sure doesn't give them away very freely! Then Carrie does another song!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Sometimes It's the Little Things

This weekend we took an unexpected trip to eastern Kentucky for Bob's Grandmother's funeral. The pastor there said he had never seen that many family members at a funeral in that little mosoleum. She had 18 grandchildren and 30 great-grands. We will miss Granny very much, but are thankful to know that she had trusted Christ as her Savior and is with him now and has all her memories back again!

This 'quick' trip took us 72 LONG hours through 5 states! We got to see some fall leaves beginning to change colors in the mountains - so beautiful! We knew it would be hard on the kids, but were amazed at how well they actually did with all the riding, different hotels, different people and all the time at the funeral home. It wasn't easy, but they are so adaptable. They didn't know where we were going, didn't understand why we were in the van for such a LONG time, didn't know how long we'd be gone, or who all the people were that we saw while we were there. You could see the uncertainty on their faces at times. The expressions asked, "where are we and who are all these people?"

So, we tried to make a point each day to do some small thing for them to make it all more fun. We found the game room at the hotel where we stayed in KY for a little while before bedtime. On the way home, we drove out of the way to find an outdoor park for the kids to play for 30 minutes after dinner before we got back in the van AGAIN!

They had a blast climbing on all the rocks in a big field near the playground. Then on Sunday we stayed at the hotel for an extra hour or two to let them swim in the pool before we got in the van AGAIN!

Those little breaks from the monotonous agenda of the trip made the whole experience seem like an adventure for them instead of a nightmare for all of us. Carrie told me one day that she 'just loves to stay at hotels'. I asked why and she said it was because she gets to snuggle me all night long! We sleep girls in one bed, boys in the other! It was a reminder that they feel safe and happy just to be wherever Mom and Dad are. We love our kiddos! (And they have the best Dad in the world! Thanks for taking the time to make the journey more fun for all of us. You're the BEST!)

So the weekend's lesson for me was this...

God provides little blessing for us all through our jouney as well. Things we don't need, didn't ask for and probably usually don't even notice - much less appreciate. He loves us better than the best earthly father ever could. He knows us better than we know our own kids. He has a plan and a purpose for our lives, even if we don't always understand it as we go through our journey.

But do we trust Him with childlike faith that He is in charge of the details, the timing, the directions, the WHOLE plan? How often do we enjoy the journey? Are we thankful for the little things? I hope I am on some days - I know I don't trust enough, follow enough, love Him enough, thank Him enough, but I want to.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

1 John 4:7-9 and Ethan's New Syllable Combination

We had a beautiful, breezy afternoon and played outside without breaking a sweat! Carrie realized that she could recite her newest verses all by herself! (Sorry for the noise from the wind!)
And not to be outdone, Ethan is trying out a new syllable combo. Now he can combine 'bah' and 'dow'! OK, so it means nothing, but it sure is cute and ya gotta start somewhere! We're confident he'll be preaching inspirational and eloquent sermons by next summer...well, we'll see!

Family Project

Carrie had to fix a family photo album to take to school this month for the unit on families. Praise the Lord it's a Christian Preschool and we don't have to discuss any unusual "family" arrangments with too many mommies or daddies!
These are the pictures she picked of her mom, dad, and brother.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

First Day of Pre-Kindergarten

Carrie has happily completed her first week of Pre-K, and she loves it! She goes Mon-Fri from 8:30-11:30. I think she was dissappointed that she couldn't go on Saturday, but Mom was missing her terribly by then! Doesn't she look grown up?

Miscellaneous Summer Pictures

Its just too hot to play outside during the day in Florida. So here they are after begging to go outside for a few minutes before bedtime!

Mimi came to visit this summer!

Gran took us to the Sesame Street Exhibit at the Atlanta Children's Museum and we had a blast!

Don't ask me why Carrie is wearing flannel pajamas in Florida in August! I don't begin to try to fathom the reasoning of a four-year-old!

Ethan smeared Vasoline all over his entire head. Not just a little bit either, about 1/4 of the whole container. It took washing it with Dawn dishwashing soap 8 times to cut the grease! And no, he didn't lie there peacefully in patiently wait while I shampooed and shampooed and shampooed and shampooed ...

I'm nominating this one for the 'Cutest Curl Award'!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Dress-Up Diva & Chocolate Disaster

For those of you who used to play dress-up once upon a time... do you remember feeling this incredibly beautiful?!

And for those of you who love chocolate...have you EVER loved it quite this much?!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Cute Ethan Stuff

I know I've been posting more Carrie stuff lately, and I don't mean to neglect the boy, but honestly, he's a LOT harder to catch! So here are a few cute Ethan videos. (And you'll notice that one of them is taken while he's strapped into a swing!) Enjoy!

Psalm 139:1-10

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Fancy Nancy

Carrie got a really cute book for her birthday. She already has it mostly memorized so that she can read it to me. The story is about a little girl, Nancy, who loves to be fancy. She loves to dress up and make everything fancy. In this story, she tries to make her plain family fancy too. The video is 5 minutes long, but really cute to hear in her sweet little voice.
So please enjoy, "Fancy Nancy" by Jane O'Connor, presented by Miss Carrie Louise McNeil.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Party Pictures

The butterfly birthday party was a huge success. No tantrums, no spills, no fire ants! The kids each got to pick a bug tatoo. Then they got to decorate a butterfly-shaped sugar cookie with colored icing, M&Ms, and sprinkles. They played outside and pinata was really fun (I highly recommend the pull-string type - no baseball bats required!) And the cake turned out cuter than I expected.

I asked her afterwards if she liked her party and she said, "Mom, I loved it!!!" So I asked her what her favorite part was and she said, "The cake and the pinata, and playing, and decorating the butterflies!" I think she had a great time!