Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Highlights

Christmas was delightful this year! We stayed home and had a simple Christmas. Grandma and Grandpa Sutton came over in the morning and stayed for the afternoon.

Here are a few of the highlights of the day.
But first Anna's chocolate house was freaking awesome!! Technically not on Christmas, but so worth sharing.
On Christmas there were new ornaments for the tree.

Size 15 clown church shoes!

They fit perfectly!!
And who wouldn't want a ball of electricity!!!

Since Luke has been running with the cross country team pretty regularly, we thought he could handle a pair of "real" running shoes. They weigh a fraction of his old shoes. He has already tried them out and has given us the stamp of approval!
Sweet Mark looks scary..but he's still a sweety.
Ben has become the silver power ranger.
Mark has been asking for a violin since for almost a year. He loves sitting in my violin lessons and just watching. He has a pretend violin made out of a macaroni and cheese box that he has about loved to pieces.
His smile was unforgettable.
And his first lesson took place right there amongst the wrapping papered floor. I loved how much he remembered from his macaroni and cheese violin.
After all the presents were opened and the cinnamon rolls were in the oven, Cory brings out this enormous gift from our in-laws car. On my bucket list is to learn how to play the cello (especially Bach's Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1.) It was over whelming to open and to realize that I could make it happen!

 Merry Christmas everyone!

Christmas Eve!!!

Christmas Eve was so much fun this year. Every year we attend the community Christmas show. It is a cute little program featuring local talent followed by SANTA!
Mark was anxiously waiting for Santa. He had several important things to discuss with him. They chatted for quite a while.

Ben brought his list. His list was SO isn't even completely opened in this photo.  Everyone had a little chuckle over it.

That night was jammie night!! After our Christmas Blessings, the boys were transformed into Supermans. Which led to our next  activity.....

...proving we could fly!


The boys in all of their awesomeness!!

Lovely Christmas Eve.

The Nativity

 I love the scene of the nativity. I have several displayed on my piano. We even have one made out of blocks that the kids play with. The only live nativities that I have seen were played out in our living room when I was young.But other then that I have not scene a live nativity.
When a friend of mine asked us to participate in a live nativity in front of 2000 people...I said why not! It was an amazing experience.

Myself, along with Mark, Ben and James, played the parts of shepherds. Luke was a Roman soldier, and Cory was one of the three wise men. I loved thinking about the lives of the different characters. We were shepherds! The poorest of the poor..our clothes were much more ragged looking then the townsmen who were paying taxes. (Did the shepherds pay taxes??)  But the shepherds were also the first ones to be told about the baby and the first ones to see the baby Jesus.  How neat is that!
The soldier!
A shepherd married a king! It could happen!!
Mark and bombed by Ben.
My fellow shepherds. They did so good!! Ben especially loved the spotlight on stage.
Here is Luke in character. He had to scamper up that ladder pretty quick when he was given his cue.
The shepherds grand entrance!!
Mark and bombed by Ben.

A lovely evening!

Monday, December 23, 2013

The price of good grades!

Earlier this year I made a deal with Luke. He wanted to earn "Honors" in his TJYC 3 class and wanted a little motivation. Last semester he studied Bayden Powell (founder of scouts) and became one of Luke's heros.  Since there was a display of scouting things at the church museum in Salt Lake City, I told him that if he reached his goal of "Honors," that I would take him to the church museum to see the display. 

His goal soon proved to be more difficult than he anticipated. He couldn't have any assignments late, all of the books had to be read, papers written with the highest score, and he had to do well in his oral exams. It was great to watch him grow this semester. By the end of the semester the trip to the museum didn't mean much to him as he personally wanted the "Honors" more then anything. Studying late into the night and early the next day became common for Luke.

James soon found out about the planned trip to SLC. And wouldn't you know it, he was willing to do hard things to go as well. I've never seen James do so much math! Woo!!

I was so excited for my boys' and their hard work that I was happy to take them to SLC. The younger boys HAD to wouldn't be as much fun without them!

Ben with Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith's death masks...I'm shocked we weren't struck by lightning after Ben posed like this.

Mark is pointing to the keys of Carthage jail. He is standing in front of the watch that saved John Taylor.

An actual was the size of our wagon!


Mark with THE Bayden Powell.

The scout exhibit was a lot of fun. Here James is tying the different knots in the display.

We had so much fun in the children's area. They had these dances that you would follow along with. Too fun!!

The costumes were a little small for Luke and James.

Along with the scout exhibit, there was a Norman Rockwell scouting exhibit. The paintings were amazing. This one that James is standing in front of, with George Washington, was valued at 4.5 million dollars.

Luke next to the Eagle Scout painting. Soon! Soon he will be an Eagle! (crossing my fingers)

James was so excited to pretend he was talking in conference. He even gave a mini sermon.

Downstairs there was a display of painting about the light of Christ. This one by Simon Dewey was James' favorite.

Of course we went to the visitor's center at Temple Square. Mark said that "What Jesus said  makes my heart happy." The sister missionaries loved that!

At the tabernacle.

Loved the lights!!

Such great memories with my boys!! 

 I loved our little excursion! I hope they get good grades next semester!

Lights lights lights!!

Christmas lights are one of my favorite parts of the Christmas season. Every year we drive around and look at them.We found the most decked out house and of course we went to the temple to look at the lights.