Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Dance Open House

The week before Christmas was open house at dance. My girls are both in the Creative Movement class at Bailey Fine Arts. Can I tell you how nice it is to have them in the same class? Their class is 45 minutes and they do ballet and tap. This is Emmie's second year and Ellie's first year. I got lots of video during the open house!

(of course my children stood on opposite sides of the room during warm up)

(this video cracked me up as she and Payton tried to figure out how to step/clap while holding hands)

(once again my children are on opposite sides of the room)

Monday, December 29, 2014

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Cookies and Carols

*Between birthdays and Christmas I'm waaaay behind on my blogging so I'm trying to play catch up now! Get ready for lots of posts about things that happened a few weeks ago...oops :)

On December 19th Emmie and Ellie had their preschool Christmas program. Both girls were so excited and Emmie even led an impromptu, last minute rehearsal in the car that morning! Gran came for the program and Paul made it as well...the girls loved having a cheering section!
Ruthie felt like a big girl getting to sit in the pew! She loved watching her sisters :)

Ellie was up first and she kept us laughing as she danced the whole time!

Emmie was much more serious.

I was so proud of both of my sweet girls and they had a great time standing on the "stage".

After the program we all gathered to eat some cookies! The girls loved that of course. They also were able to visit with their friends and teachers.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Happy Birthday Ruthie!

Dear Ruthie,

Oh my sweet, sweet baby. I just can't believe you are 1 today! More than with any of your sisters, I truly feel that this year has flown by. While you're only about 10lb bigger than when you were born, there is a lot of energy packed into that little body! You have gone from a baby who was happy to sit on my lap and snuggle while watching the world to not ever wanting to sit still. Everyone remarks on how fast you crawl and I'm pretty sure that within a few weeks you will be a full time walker. I treasure those rare times now when you will sit and snuggle with me...they are few and far between and generally only last a few minutes and then you're off again.
Before you were born we didn't find out if you were a boy or a girl so you were just "baby" for 9 months. Emmie said from the beginning that you were a girl and she and Ellie called you Baby Rosie for about 4 months (so it's probably good that you weren't a boy!). There was so much anticipation when we went in for your induction. We knew what your name was going to be if you were a boy but we still didn't have a girl name picked out and in fact that very week we had gone from a list of 3 names that we liked okay (Charlotte, Evelyn, or Madelynn), then added a few to the list and finally went into the hospital with  a list of 2 names (Ruth and Rose) that weren't on our original list! As soon as you were born we knew you were Ruth (we'd had your middle name picked out for months) and I've never doubted our name choice for a minute...your name fits you perfectly!
Ruthie, you have been a delight from the very beginning. Your sisters loved you from the moment they saw you, as I knew they would...they anticipated your arrival for so long! I think my favorite moment was not them meeting you though, but you meeting them, really meeting them and realizing that they were a part of your world. The day we brought you home and put your carrier on the ground and you just watched them and were so content with the craziness that was your reality. They were squealing and running around and Franklin was popping in and out of your line of sight to sniff you and give you kisses and you just sat there. It is hard to describe what I felt in that moment but I looked at you and knew that you felt like you were in the place you belonged...you knew you were home.
From day one you fit right into our routine. You were content to tag along wherever we went and if your schedule needed to be adjusted a little you went along with the new plan...all you asked was that we let you take your afternoon nap at home. You've always loved to play. Even as an infant if you were fussy sometimes it was just because you wanted to lay on a blanket on the floor and wiggle. I must say this shouldn't have surprised me, you were very, very active when I was pregnant with you! You are a bit of a Momma's girl (and that's a bit of an understatement) although you're starting to warm up to others. You have resigned yourself to the nursery and even though you would never, ever admit it I'm pretty sure you even have fun playing with the other babies and toys. You have also realized that Daddy likes to wrestle and make silly noises...you are quite entertained by this. I'm so glad you are starting to warm up to other people so that they can see your sweet, fun, silly personality!
We're starting to see your personality change and develop. You're generally quite content and you LOVE to play with your sisters. One of your favorite things is to body slam them. Fortunately they think this is hilarious. They're quite tolerant of whatever wrestling move you're trying out on them that day.  In the past few weeks we have started seeing the stronger side of your personality come out. You have the ability to throw quite the temper tantrum (arched back, screaming, etc). Fortunately these moments don't last too long and we dry your tears and you go back to being your sweet, fun loving self! You love to play with dolls and you hug them and pat them. You love to look at books and in sleepy moments will sit and let me read to you. You've started babbling more to us and we try to listen to your babbles..you talk so quietly that sometimes it takes me a few minutes to realize that you're chatting away beside me! You are tenderhearted. You will often get upset if one of your sisters gets in trouble and you're concerned when they cry and you've been like this since you were a newborn. You've started giving hugs and you love to sing and dance and listen to music. You are so determined. When you put your mind to something you work at it until you can do it, whether it's climbing into the rocking chair, crawling, escaping through the doggy door, or your new skill, learning to walk...you are confident that you can do anything the bigger kids do! I am so looking forward to watching you blossom into a toddler this next year!
Ruthie, you keep me running all day and I never know just what trouble you're going to be getting into next but I wouldn't change one thing about you. You are perfect just the way you are and you are perfect for this family.
I love you sweet Ruthie Roo!

Here's our sweet Roo a year ago...

Friday, December 26, 2014

Christmas Part 2

Today we slept in (and through the night) yay!!! After we got up and going GG, Papa, Emily, and Blake came to join us for a second day of Christmas. We ate some Red Robin (the girls wanted Rush's so we compromised with a bit of a fancier burger) and everyone played outside while Ruthie napped. I'm pretty sure Ellie swung for about an hour...she was so happy to have a house full of willing "swing pushers". Emmie and I were able to spend some time one on one which we both really needed. Once Ruthie woke up from her nap we headed inside to open presents! We all got wonderful presents and the girls (and Franklin) had a great time opening their second round of presents.
Ruthie LOVED her rainmaker!

The girls had a great time modeling their new winter accessories!

Ellie (and Emmie) got lots of new books....such a happy little girl!

Aunt Emily and Ruthie had some bonding time.

Ruthie was a little more interested in the whole "present opening" thing today.

Last year we asked the grandparents to give the girls a "something to do" instead of a "something to play with" and we went to the circus and Disney Jr Live. This year we're going to Disney on Ice - Frozen and Disney Jr Live. Paul's mom always has a little puzzle the girls have to figure out...the big girls enjoyed working on it this year.

Merry Christmas to All!

We had a wonderful Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and hope you did too!

We started Christmas Eve with a quick trip to the pediatrician (as in we were in and out in less than 20 minutes...super impressive!) and later had to make an unplanned run to Target in the pouring rain...that was a bit of a nightmare but I was just glad we didn't have to go to Wal-Mart after I saw the line of cars trying to turn into the parking long. Other than these two unplanned excursions our day went according to plan!
Yesterday afternoon we went to the children's Christmas Eve service. As always it was excellent. Some of the children of the church did the prelude music and they did such a good job! The children were also readers and then Dr. Thomas and two of the other pastors did the lesson. I have loved all the children's programs our church did this Christmas season!

After church the girls and I came home and Paul went back to work. My crazy, puddle loving children went and played outside in the rain. They had begged me to let them all the way home from church and they were so stir crazy as it had rained for the last 3 days so I finally gave in and let them run loose. It ended up creating a great opportunity to go ahead and get baths. We ate dinner a little early and once Paul got home we started in on our Christmas Eve traditions! We watched Polar Express, drank hot chocolate, and ate candy canes and other yummy goodies! The girls were SO excited, although Emmie was a little unsure about Polar Express at first but once it started she was fine.

After Polar Express the girls headed to bed and then Emmie and Ellie popped back out of their room because we'd forgotten to write a letter to Santa...oops! Emmie quickly wrote a letter, we put out some snacks for Santa and the reindeer, and then we went outside (in the rain) and the girls spread their reindeer food out (oatmeal, sugar, and sugar crystals, I believe). Emmie got it from school and was very concerned with making sure we remembered to put it out...apparently this is a very important step in the preparing for Santa process!
(I wrote the last part per Emmie's  instructions. She cracks me up sometimes.)

The girls were PERFECT at bedtime last night. They didn't' come out of their room, or play around, and they were both asleep within about 30 minutes. It was delightful! They know that Santa doesn't come until everyone's asleep and they were ready for him to visit their house! After the girls were asleep Santa made his appearance and left some great presents...he also visited bathroom (perhaps with Emmie's new Elsa doll in tow) and left some ice crystals on the mirror which absolutely thrilled the girls!
Santa was here!

On a side note, I don't think I've ever really shown these up close on the blog before. My mom has made stockings for all of us and I LOVE all of them. Mine is the one I had growing up!

(Credit goes to Emmie for all the time she spent supervising Gran to ensure that she had Ruthie's stocking done on time!)

This morning the girls were up at about 730. I had the monitor in their room so that I would hear them wake up and we could all see what Santa brought together. Emmie woke up first and I heard her say Ellie's name in such an excited voice...I love the joy of Christmas through a child's eyes! I went in their room and while Emmie was excited about Christmas she was very disappointed that it hadn't snowed. I think she'd somehow gotten it in her head that it's supposed to snow on Christmas. She's still a little distressed over the idea that South Carolina does not get very much snow....sorry kid, no white Christmases for you.
The girls were excited to check out their Santa gifts. They all got what they asked for and were also thrilled with their surprises! Ruthie was funny...she didn't really know what was going on....she mostly just watched the big girls! Franklin had the best reaction by far...he was SO EXCITED! He couldn't wait to check out the treats in his stocking and if you mentioned presents at all he was over to you in a flash to see if you had one for him...I do love the little puppy!
Franklin educating Ruthie on the whole Christmas thing.
Franklin checking his stocking...he was moving so much I had trouble getting a picture!
Aurora and Super Girl! (All day you'd hear one of them yell "help" and whoever was"super girl" would run to save the day!)

After we looked at all the gifts from Santa, we ate our traditional Christmas morning breakfast of cinnamon rolls...always a hit at this house!

About the time we finished breakfast, Gran, Grandaddy, and Uncle Ben arrived to spend the day with us. We were so glad they were able to come and celebrate with us and we loved getting to spend time with them, especially with Ben as he generally is only able to come home twice a year. Once the girls had shown off their new stuff we sat down and opened presents (once again Franklin was over the moon excited with the festivities and the presents for him). We all were blessed with many wonderful gifts.
Dorothy...Ellie LOVES her Wizard of Oz book and Dance Theater of Columbia is performing it this year and the girls are so excited!

Checking out Uncle Ben's calendar...the girls loved looking at all the pictures!
One of the few times Ruthie paused long enough to put some effort into opening a present.

Jasmine and her Elsa doll...it's a princess paradise!

My mom brought all the fixings for Low Country Boil and it was really a perfect Christmas Day meal!

To finish off the meal we had a special dessert. Every time the girls see my dad they ask him if he brought ice cream (he makes a delicious homemade Cookies and Cream) so he made ice cream for us today. The girls, especially Ellie, were thrilled. Ellie talked about it all day and was so cute as she just sat at the table while we cleaned up the dishes and waited for her ice cream...she wasn't taking a chance on missing out on her favorite dessert! Ellie loved all her presents but I'm pretty sure her favorite part of the day was the ice cream....she made sure to put in her request for ice cream for the next time Grandaddy comes to our house! (On a side note, Ruthie did not get any ice cream as she slept through the meal and dessert...we do have some leftovers to give her another day though...she wanted some so badly when we were at the beach this summer and I can't wait to see if it lives up to her expectations!)
After lunch we all hung around the house and enjoyed spending time with each other. It was so nice to be able to relax and spend time with the people we love!
This evening as I snuggled with the girls in their bed I asked them each what their favorite present was. (I love asking them questions like this when we snuggle at night...they're relaxed and sleepy and there's nothing else going on so they will stop and really think before they answer.) Emmie said her favorite present was her puzzle that she can color (it's a black and white puzzle with Minnie in the middle and it came with crayons to color in the puzzle..it was from the dollar bin at Target!). Ellie said her favorite presents were her Dorothy dress up dress (I stocked up when Target had their costumes BOGO and the girls both LOVED their new dress up clothes...they spent all day dressed up), and her Bernstein Bear book and Charlotte's Web. Ruthie of course couldn't tell me what her favorite present was ,and really she was mostly oblivious to the unwrapping and new presents, but I think she would have said her new books and the bunny bank from Uncle Ben (it had a bow...she LOVED the bow and kept kissing/trying to bite the bank). She did also like the tube of toothpaste in her stocking...she kept chewing on it lol.

We had a quiet end to our day and our ready for Christmas with the Edwards' tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

One step at a time

Ruthie had been taking a step or two for the past week. She tends to get so excited that she wants to run so she falls down after the first step. Tonight she decided to practice her walking. The first time she took 6 steps before falling. I didn't get that on video but I did get this!

PS. I love how determined she is! She works so hard every day on perfecting her standing and walking and you can just see the determination on her face.

PPS. I guess for New Year's Miss Ruthie will be getting some shoes!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Ruthie's First Birthday

etsy link
Today we had Ruthie's birthday party. I really can't believe she'll be 1 in one week...time has flown! The party them was Winter Onederland (thank you pinterest!) and I ordered her invitations off of Etsy. We had some friends and family to our house to help celebrate and the birthday girl was all smiles!

I was so thrilled with her outfit. My friend Jill appliqued the shirt for Ruthie and I made the tutu and bow. I found the tights at Belk (they are tights material but don't have feet and instead have a ruffle at the bottom...they're adorable).

We were running around before the party getting everything ready (we were up late the night before getting ready and then Ruthie was ready to party at 2am so we were dragging this morning!) and I completely forgot to take pictures of the setup so I snapped a couple as we were starting to clean up. I went with a silver and blue color scheme and I was thrilled with the results!

When you walked in we had a table set up with Ruthie's birthday book for everyone to sign. For those of you who haven't seen one of my birthday posts before, each year we pick a book for everyone at the party to sign. The girls love reading the messages from their friends and remembering who was at their party. Ruthie's book was The Little Engine that Could and I picked it because to me Ruthie is the little engine. She is so little but so determined (ie. learning to crawl out the doggy door so she can go play outside iwht her sisters!).
On the dining room table we had that adorable little silver tree from Hobby Lobby that Emmie begged me to get and a bowl filled with blue and silver ornaments. We had snowflake plates and napkins. For the food we had fruit, sandwiches cut I the shape of snowflakes, sausage balls, parmesan crisps, and cupcakes!

We had vanilla cupcakes with a white chocolate snowflake on top. The snowflakes ended up being a bit creative but each snowflake is unique right?

For our beverage we had a hot chocolate bar! It was so fun! We had chocolate syrup, whipped cream, chocolate chips, and marshmallows.

For party favors we gave everyone hot chocolate mix and a silver ornament (you can't see them too well on the tree and most of them were gone by this point but they were sparkly and fun).

I took so many pictures of this sweet girl...she just loves the camera!

Love the tutu effect!

Singing Happy Birthday!

I think we managed to get all of the kiddos in this picture and I love the expressions on everyone's faces!

Ruthie was pretty unimpressed with her cupcake. She ate a few bites of the icing but that was it. She's been my only one that didn't scarf down her cupcake!

After everyone left we let Miss Ruthie get a nap...she was so glad to get in her bed and take a little snooze!
Our family stayed at our house after the friend party and we celebrated our December girls with them! After Ruthie woke up we opened presents with the family. Emmie and Ellie had a great time "helping" Ruthie open her presents. Ruthie was not interested at all in opening presents but did enjoy the new toys!

Ruthie loved her new books (thanks Leslie!).

Emmie was excited to open her presents!

Ellie and Ruthie snuggling with the new baby doll. Ellie was such a good sport about the fact that she didn't get any presents. I have been so impressed with her maturity last week and this week when Emmie and Ellie were getting presents. She did go outside to swing in the middle of the present opening but she didn't make a big deal about it at all....just headed outside quietly.

We spent some time visiting with our family, which was so nice and we had a delicious dinner that the grandmothers put together for us (which was a HUGE help for me!).

Ruthie loves to look at books and Uncle Blake and Aunt Emily were more than willing to snuggle with her!

Hurray for birthdays!

Funny story. If you've been around Ruthie you know she is a Momma's girl through and through. She's just starting to warm up to Paul. Well Ben, whom she hasn't seen since July, came in the door and picked her up and cradled her in his arms and she just chilled there...she almost fell asleep. We couldn't believe it!

Emmie got to wear the coveted birthday hat!

Ruthie has so many toys and clothes so instead of a present for Ruthie we asked our friends to bring a present for a little girl we know who has had a really hard few months. We wanted to help make her Christmas extra special this year! We were so overwhelmed with the outpouring of love for this sweet girl. We had so many friends that didn't come to the party but still sent a present and we have 2 boxes full of toys and clothes to donate to her family.

We had such a wonderful time celebrating Ruthie's first birthday and we're so thankful for all of those who have loved on Ruthie and us this year!