Thursday, December 24, 2009

1-2-3 Jesus Loves Me

On December 12th, Jackson had his Christmas Program at Calvary Christian School where he attends Mrs. Udell's preschool class. He was so excited that they got to be on stage in the "adult church" until it was actually time to do it. He had been belting out his songs all week long and then when it was time to walk on to the stage, he decided that he was not going to do it. Mrs. Bradford(his asst. teacher) tried to convince him to go up there, but as you know, Jack has a mind of his own and a strong will to match. He shouted out," NO!" giving his best mean face and came to sit with us in the audience. I know I should understand this is normal for small children, but I am a mom(and a human one at that) and I was understandably disappointed that we would be the only parents without a child singing on stage. Jack sat on Grammie's lap and sang along with his class. As soon as he saw us cheering and clapping for his classmates, he decided he was ready to join them to get his fair share of the applause. He bounded up on stage and belted out the tunes, inhibitions aside, and stole the show! It was precisely at this point that our video camera decided not to cooperate, so we are hoping another parent will take pity on us and give us a copy of the kids performance. The most memorable part of the show was when Jack shouted out, "Oh, Rats!" during a rare quiet moment of the production. Bryan and I(although slightly embarrassed at our little scene stealers gaffe)watched with love in our eyes as our little guy overcame his stagefright and grew just a bit more before our very eyes.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Canyon is Grand

Since our hotel was near the south entrance to The Grand Canyon, we decided to make a day of it and experience the beauty the canyon has to offer. Everything was breathtaking covered in snow! Jack loved eating fresh snow and looking at the vastness of the canyon. The day we went there were SO many animals to see. We saw the most beautiful buck, a baby coyote, 2 does and a wolf(although he was too busy to pose for a photo).


On our way home from The Polar Express, we got stuck in the parking lot of our hotel. There was lots of snow and underneath it all, tons of ICE. Bryan and I tried to dig the truck out(did I mention it was 11 below?), but were unsuccessful. The people at the hotel were most unhelpful and just looked at us with mild pity and humor since the weather was definitely not in our favor. Luckily, a good samaritan came by with a tow strap and pulled us out. You are probably wondering where Jack was while our lips were nearly frozen off during this snowy debacle? The answer is asleep in his carseat with the heater keeping him toasty.

The Magical Ride on The Polar Express

In Williams, Arizona there is a special train ride called The Polar Express. We were lucky enough to be able to take Jack on the train to the North Pole to meet Santa Claus in person. It was a total surprise for him. First, we had dinner at Cruiser's Route 66 Cafe. Then we headed to the Grand Canyon Railway station to turn in our tickets for the ride of a small child's life. It was magical. Snow on every tree, weather cold enough to freeze your breath, the glow of Christmas lights and pajama clad children everywhere anticipating this special ride. Once we were on the train, the conductor read The Polar Express story, they passed out fresh chocolate chip cookies and hot chocolate(as thick as melted chocolate bars just like the story Jack pointed out). We rode the train and sang carols waiting to get to the North Pole. We saw elves, reindeer and Santa himself! The children were so excited to see him on his sleigh, but the big surprise was a personal visit from the man himself. He spoke to every child and presented them with the "first gift of Christmas," a silver sleigh bell. One look at Jackson's face tells all. Here are some pics from our adventure.


Northern Arizona had a huge blizzard about a week ago just before our trip to The Polar Express. We were so excited for Jack to have the opportunity to see snow for the very first time. We drove to our hotel in the Grand Canyon and Jack was all squeals and giggles as his little hands grasped the fluffy powder. I loved seeing the excitement in his eyes and the pink of his cheeks and nose from the 20 degree weather(it was 11 below that night...that's another post!). Here are some pics of him playing in the snow and sitting by the huge fireplace in the hotel lobby.

April Showers

Everytime April comes to town we get rain! Thankfully, while she is here, April likes to stay in her pjs and watch movies, play with Jack and eat her sister's cooking. She brought Jackson a geode and new footed Spiderman pajamas(we are having a hard time getting him out of them!) We had a blast! When the rain cleared up, we took Jack to ZooLights to see the Dancing Trees and drink hot chocolate. Too bad Bryan had to work tons while she was pics of us together. Sorry A, I will be out to see you this spring and we will make sure to get updated pics of the two of us! Love you.

Wicked Sweet

My sister came to visit right around the time I was creating our annual Christmas card. I had a brilliant idea to make a recipe postcard featuring, you guessed it, Jack! Here are a few of my favorite shots from that day. Thanks for your help, April! These turned out hilarious!