Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Another Christmas

Well, it's Christmas Eve and I didn't get a single card in the mail. My excuse? We didn't take family pictures this year....again. As the cards started trickling into our home this year, some of my favorites were hand made with no family picture, just with a sweet personal note to us. Why can't I be like that? Alas, here I sit, at 9:00pm on Christmas Eve, posting to our blog, hoping that those we love will know that they were not forgotten this year. I am hoping 2013 I will be better prepared. I really had the best intentions going into September, but then all of the sudden it was December and the cards/pictures never happened.  So here goes... my best shot at our Christmas card update this year - via blog:

Olivia! Wow... what can I say about that little fireball. She turned 5 this year and she is as crazy and wonderful as that electric hair of hers. She wants to be as rough and tough as her brothers but all the while wearing a skirt. She has the most hilarious personality. She says things that just dumbfound me, and majority of the time I should punish her for what she says but I just so impressed stunned by what she says that it's all I can do to hold in my laugh. She just turned 5 last week and is beyond excited for Kindergarten to start next year.

Ethan turned 10 in August and is more and more like Dan everyday. He is really tall for his age, towering (at least a head) taller than any of his friends. He is also quite strong for his age, something he hasn't really adjusted to yet. He has a tendency to hurt those he is playing with, thinking he is being fun. We are working on self-awareness. We found Ethan his own club baseball team this year, The Blaze. He is their primary shortstop but we are hoping to see him get to catch a little more in 2013, now that some other kids are getting some time at SS too.

Spencer is twelve now, and had his first run with priesthood duties at church this year. Something that had him rather nervous, but just like Spencer he didn't quit and powered though. He found that he can do anything he needs to, and be good at it. He is still playing baseball with the Raptor's, going into their 3rd season together and we couldn't love a group of people more. The boys and families are all one big family and it is a wonderful situation.

Ryleigh is 2 months shy of turning 15, and reminding me regularly that she will have her permit this time next year (eeek!). She is a freshman in High School and is doing pretty well.. She has always been a good student, not because it comes easy but because she works hard, but this year has proven to be a bit challenging. We discovered she has a bit of "test anxiety" which has pretty drastic effects on her grade point average unfortunately. We are currently accepting all suggestions on how to deal with that.

Dan is busy working, coaching, working and coaching. He is crazy busy but I think he likes it. He doesn't have much down time but it's only for the time being and he is wonderful about remembering to live in this moment. I am busy shuffling kids to various activities. I go through an astronomical amount of gas but I know that I will miss these days when they are gone. We try to keep that in mind everyday.

We hope that everyone has a wonderful and Merry Christmas!

The Linn's

Meet Fred

 Merry Christmas!

I love this time of year! Christmas is so special! I love the feeling of warmth the home gets when it is decorated for Christmas.
This year we had another Christmas decoration - Fred. He is our Elf.
One day he just showed up on our front door step. Then every night he would magically make a trip back to the North Pole and update Santa on the goings-ons in the Linn house. Apparently we were pretty good, because Santa did come.
Sometimes he would end up in the funniest places....
The first night he was very well behaved....

Swinging from the lights!

I think Fred & Barbie had a fling...
I can't wait for Fred to come back next year! He was such a fun little treat this year.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

The past couple of years we have had Christmas Eve alone with just our little family of 6. We have had no complaints. Its actually been really nice. We have had no complaints. It's always fun to have a low key day during such a hectic time of year.

This year, however, Adam & Aubrey mentioned that they didn't have plans for Christmas Eve either so we decided to team up! Some of our favorite Christmas memories are from the 2 years that we drove to Georgia from Texas to see their family over the holidays. It was a lot of fun to spend Christmas Eve together with them again. 

The kids all got to open their Christmas Eve presents, and SURPRISE! They were new pajamas!  

Ryleigh, Spencer, Garrett, Ethan, Ashley, Olivia, Jayda & Addysen

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Holiday fun with the Family

Team Livy & Little Gramma
We got together with Dan's family yesterday in a celebration of Christmas and not imploding with the Earth on the "last day of existence". I wanted to do something different from what we normally do so I found some holiday Minute to Win It games! We teamed up in teams of 2 and had a BLAST!!!

Team Adam & Joel

Ashley (Ashley was on my team!)
 One of the challenges was to get a red pom pom to stick to a glob of Vaseline at the end of your nose without using your hand. Ya... it was challenging.

Team Daniella & Ammon

 Another challenge was to stack nuts vertically with a toothpick, and you had to could only use one hand and had to trade off turns.
Team Aubrey & Spencer

Team Jayda & Nicole
Using mouths only, teams had to hang ornaments on a string that was pulled between 2 chairs.
Team Dan & Ethan

Team Ryleigh & Kaela
 Another challenge was to hang the ornaments on a yard stick that was balanced on an empty paper towel roll. Each team member could only work on their own side of the yard stick.
Team Travis & Garrett

Team Adam & Olivia - they ended up pairing up in the end when their teammates got burned out.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Olivia's 5th Birthday

 It's hard to believe but our baby is 5 today. She is beyond excited to be celebrating a birthday today! She has had a couple of presents sitting out on the table for a couple of days from grandparents that had to mail it in and the suspense has been killing her! Silly me though... I only took video of her opening those gifts to I could text it to far away grandparents. The only photo I took of her opening presents is the one that we got her from our family. A Brave bow & arrow set. It only took her a few tries to get it and now she is good! She even has had to show papa & Chad the proper way to use it.

She asked for a very specific type of cake. She wanted a White cake with strawberries and chocolate on the top... so I made my best interpretation of that cake. Apparently it was delicious! Everyone LOVED it! I didn't eat any because I ate WAY too much of her yummy birthday dinner! (Fried Red Hot Chicken Strips!)

Happy Birthday Little Livy Loo! We love you!