Saturday, December 29, 2007

"Christmastime Was Here"

The girl's Christmas shoes:
This Christmas we especially had fun with how excited the kids were about everything. The boys had been anticipating the big day for awhile. On Christmas Eve afternoon, Isaiah asked Elijah to come play something; to which Elijah responded, "I think I'll just wait here for stockings."Adriana really got into opening presents and would squeal with joy.
The boys favorite gift were toy guns (given by their uncles and completely unsanctioned by Mommy) that made loud shooting noises. They also got some more pretend tools including safety glasses.
(He's going to kill me for that photo one day.)
Adriana got many girlie gifts. She's been wearing her tutu and princess jewelry all over the house,
using her baby bottles to keep her stuffed tiger hydrated,
and giving her brother's miniature army men rides in her new baby stroller.
My hubby blew me away with wonderful photography gifts, one of which was a new lens I was trying not to covet. I made him be my first photo subject with it.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Unless there is a Sieb Fam event of colossal proportions (such as Adriana deciding to potty train herself tomorrow), this will be my last post until after Christmas.
I wanted to show you two photos of the kids that we used as Christmas gifts for Steven's family.

Our prayer is that your holiday has fresh meaning. May you find joy in the fact that God loved us so much that He chose not to leave us in our sin, but to send His Son to pay our debt and to reconcile us to Him. May you rejoice in the hope that Christ came not for Christmas but for Easter.
May you each have a....

Saturday, December 22, 2007

"Jolly Old [Dead] Nicholas"

Warning: If you still believe in Santa Clause, read no further.

From the beginning, we decided we didn't want our kids to believe in Santa Claus. It's not that we're Santaphobic. Our kids own a Santa hat, and enjoy television specials like Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. Our thought was that if they believe in both Santa and Jesus; then one day find out that Santa isn't real, what will they think of all we've told them about Jesus?
Here's where the tricky part comes. We didn't want our kids breaking the news to other children who believe and spoiling the joy that the other parents wanted to their children to have in that idea. But kids have big mouths. The solution we came up with was to tell our kids about St. Nicholas explaining that he was a kind man who lived many years ago and is now called Santa. We thought the idea was brilliant since then they wouldn't tell others that Santa wasn't real. We told them this; and inevitably, the questions came. Here a sampling of last year's conversation:
"So, Santa's real?"
"Well, he was a real person who lived a long time ago. But the Santa you see in the mall is just a regular man dressed up; the real St. Nicholas isn't around anymore."
"So, he's dead?"
"Uh..." (alarms go off in my head) "Well, yes he is."
"Who shot him?"
"Nobody shot him."
"Then how'd he die?"
"I believe he died of old age."
Fast forward to last week in Michigan at a party with my sister-in-law's two little nephews. (Yep, you see where this is headed.) The kids were all playing together when one of the little nephews came running out to his mother.
"Mom, is Santa Claus dead!?!"
So, I obviously had to have an emergency meeting with Isaiah. I explained that many kids believe in Santa, and that it's what their mommies and daddies want them to believe. I continued to explain that it is not our place to contradict them if they talk about Santa. I told him that it's probably better not to say anything at all about Santa to other children.
Indignantly he replied, "Mom! Why would parents tell their children something like that!"
Great. I've created a self-righteous Santa Claus expert. This parenting thing is so much harder than I ever dreamed.

Friday, December 21, 2007

A Small Favor

Our sweet niece, Trinity, is a baby contest, and I'm doing my proper auntly duty of soliciting as many votes as possible.

See, she's so cute; you'd want to vote for her even if she wasn't my niece!

To vote clink on this link to
You do have to make a free account if you don't already have one.
Then under "'Cute Winter Hat, Baby!' Photo Contest" click "vote for your favorite."
Trinity's entry id is: 2370900005
You can vote up to 5 times each day.
After voting, be sure to raise your "Alyssa's true friend o-meter" up a notch :o)

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Christmas Card

Right now it's actually fun to get the mail; beautiful Christmas cards fill our mailbox.
Thankfully, I was able to complete the yearly task of getting ours sent out. I have nine aunts, seven uncles, and 38 cousins. Add on top of that my husband's family and our friends, and you have a rather long Christmas card list. To make things a bit easier, I've kept the recipients to two categories: family and friends that live out-of-state.
So, to rest of you dear friends, here's your Christmas card. It may arrived in a more unconventional way; but in a season of celebrating the perfect gift of God's Son sent to rescue us from our sin, we're also grateful for the gift of your friendship. We love you!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Our Michigan Christmas

We just got home from a trip to Michigan to celebrate Christmas with the Sieb side of the family. It was also our first time meeting our new niece/cousin. Here are a few photos from our time there..
Grandpa and Adriana playing a tune:

One of Grandma's many creative ideas for playing- nailing golf tees into foam:

The cousins with Great Grandma and Grandpa Sieb (affectionately known as the "Great Punkins):

Trinity & Adriana with Great Grandma Spas:

Daddy and his girl:

The whole family:

Playing by the water fountain at Detriot Metro Airport:

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Here was my to-do list before flying out to Michigan tomorrow to visit Steven's family:
  • cleaning
  • packing
  • blog a catch-up birthday post
It's definitely the list of a 21st century mother.
Here are birthday photos of Steven's 30th and Aunt Hannah's 18th. I'm keeping the writing to minimum here since I still have a few last things to finish from the rest of my to-do list.
Reading a homemade birthday card from the boys:
Goofing around with Uncle Josiah:
Birthdays mean lots of games:
When Grammy pulled out the cake, Adriana (who has been to a record number of birthday parties in her 17 months of life) excitedly shouted, "Cookie! Cookie!"

Counting 18 candles:

Sunday, December 9, 2007

More Winter

A couple more winter photos...

Isaiah sporting a goofy 80's hat...

Winter Wonderland...

Friday, December 7, 2007

Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire

One of the things we were really excited about when we bought our home was the fireplace. My favorite thing about it is the cozy feel it emits; my kids' favorite thing about it is the fact that marshmallows can be roasted over it. The new tradition that we started this year was having a full "fireplace meal" the evening after we've put up the tree. The boys got a big kick out of roasted hot dogs; toasted cheese; and, of course, some gooey marshmallows.

Thursday, December 6, 2007


One of the many things I love about Virginia is that it holds out on winter as long as possible. Taking a walk in 70 degree weather the day before Thanksgiving puts a smile on my face. But winter has finally arrived; and at my house, everyone but me is excited about it. Before you judge me on my lack of winter spirit, try adding 20 minutes of bundling children before any of your outings...
Yesterday morning to my boys delight, we awoke to an entire 1/2 inch of snow (a big deal around here). Of course playing in it, and the mud that lies below it, was absolutely necessary. After almost an hour of blowing up inflatable sleds, making sure everyone had used the potty, layering my children, and using every ounce of muscle power to put on boots that a manufacturer never actually checked to see if a foot could enter into, my boys were ready.

Cleaning off the van for Momma:

As a watched my boys giggling, sledding, and making 4 inch snowmen, it was all worth the effort. And when we awoke to another 1/2 inch of snow this morning, I found myself excited.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Train Tracks

One of our favorite parts of Burke Lake Park was the abandoned little train track complete with a mini depot. The kids spent a lot of time running up and down the tracks shrieking with delight.
A quick pose:

"See ya, Mom!"

Looking at the birdies:

Climbing up on the little windmill:


Let Me Quote You On That

I'm breaking from the park photos to share a couple recent quotes before I forget them...
Adriana held a book and led me by the hand to the spot where we usually read. She asked me, "Ah you weady?"
Elijah was driving with me to go get our haircuts. Out of the blue he told me, "I hope I'm good while I get my haircut."
Isaiah reminded me this morning of how he been naughty and gotten into the cookie sprinkles container.
"You might wanna' put those someplace where I can't them," he suggested.
"I think you should just obey me and not touch them again," I respond.
He thought for second, "Hmmm...good point."
This morning Elijah was throwing a fit, and I sent him to his bed until he calmed down. Adriana was very intrigued by the situation.
She came to me and said, "Waah-waah...Jijah!"
She went and pointed her finger at Elijah, emphatically demanding, "No cry!"

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Burke Lake

After having my first Photoshop purchase stolen, I had my second one shipped to my parents house. Thankfully, it arrived safely; and now I am having way too much fun with it.
Here are a couple of photos from when we took the kids to Burke Lake Park the other week. It was our first time there, and it is our new favorite park. We can't believe we've lived so close to it for almost five years now and never knew what we were missing.