Monday, December 26, 2011

Joy To The World

This weekend has been a blessing celebrating the birth of our Savior!! Christ's birth truly was and is a joy to this dark and broken world that we live in. I pray that we can begin to instill this into Fulton's heart now and that we continuously remind ourselves why we are celebrating this time of year. It's so easy to get caught up in the decorations, gifts, parties and lights and I am often so guilty of.
This little cutie woke up Saturday ready for Christmas. He is starting to enjoy sitting in his little bumbo seat. The first time wasn't so pleasant, but I think he enjoys it a little now. I am sure he wouldn't want to admit that.

Saturday we packed it up and headed towards Oxford to visit with Matt's fam. We got to see his mom and stepdad, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins galore.

Little buddy had fun. He was passed around from person to person and was such a trooper. After visiting and munching on goodies, it was time to head back to the house and get ready for bed.

Fulton woke up in a great mood Christmas morning and was ready to see what Santa brought. I know as the years come, it's going to be important to balance the focus of Christmas back to Christ's birth and not get too much into the focus of Santa. It's a hard temptation we will have to face.

Matt and I decided to open a few gifts from each other while we were still at home. Matt likes to be a sneaky little booger and had this huge box under the tree for me. I started opening and pulling all this paper out and then I finally got to another small box inside. He did good this year!!! We'll just say there was something for my ears that was really shiny and silver.

Unfortunately, Matt's present after that wasn't that exciting... but it was something he needed. His electric razor quit working about 2 months ago and he has been shaving ole school since. Never knew someone would get that excited about removing some facial hair.

We then headed to KK and Pops house for Christmas with the fam. Fulton opted to keep his PJ's on. Makes for better snuggling.

We all decided instead of doing lunch this year, let's have a breakfast brunch. This was fabulous!! We had gluten free homemade waffles (just for Pops), sausage balls, grits, hashbrown casserole, scrambled eggs and fruit. Yum yum!!

KK and Pops got Fulton this huge stuffed frog. He was excited!! I think he will love snuggling and playing with this thing when he gets a little bigger. It matches the colors in his room perfectly.

We opened some gifts. Pops got some good AL gear, maybe Santa will still deliver those National Championship tickets he is hoping for.

Sister got some new salt and pepper shakers to match her china.

Mom got some cute clothes and jewelry and a new fun red crockpot. I remember my first crockpot years back... it was white and blue with flowers around the top. They sure are making them nicer these days.

The Petersons will now be able to see when the power goes out.

Fulton got some fun toys and some cute clothes from Aunt Keri and KK. This little stinker slept through the gifts.

Matt was really excited about this extra large caulk gun that he got. Really?! What do you do with this thing? If you need anything caulked at your house, just call Matt.

And the aftermath.

Daddy does not like this picture and wants it forever deleted, I think it's funny. Let's just say Fulton finally woke up and was ready to play with all the bows and paper.

After a full day of fun and festivities, little buddy was crashed out. What a joyous day!!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011


Yesterday was the big 60th birthday for dad. Let the celebrations begin!! For lunch we headed to Grandma's to do a little celebrating with her.

Dad with his two favorite daughters!

Dad with sweet momma on his big day.

Sister is so thoughtful and got Pops some gluten free cupcakes for his birthday. Dad is allergic to flour... has been for most of his life... so he always misses out on the cake part. But not this year. Thanks to good ole Gigi's cupcakes.

Fulton made his Pops a birthday card. He was so proud.

And we watched him open gifts... got some good stuff. This whole time we are pretend celebrating his birthday... just wait to see what's coming later in the day.

And we celebrated Christmas with Grandma while we were there too. Grandma had several requests for Christmas and one was a wooden bread box. I searched high and low in the stores, no one makes wooden anymore. Never fear, the Petersons came to the rescue and found one online. She loved it.

Our attempt at a family picture. Gotta love some action shots. We left Grandma's house, flew home and rushed to get things ready for this........

A surprise 60th birthday party for our dad!! Woohoo! Mom, sister and I knew we wanted to do something big and fun for dad's birthday party.. it started out with just a few couples over to mom and dad's for dinner and then turned into a full blown surprise dinner party at the antique gallery downtown (where sister had her reception).

Sister and I, with the hubbys, got there early to get everything in place... we ran like crazy to get it all decorated and stopped for 2 quick seconds for a family photo in front of the tree before the big guest arrived. At least there is no spit up in this one.

All the guests arrived at 6:00 and we had mom and dad there at 6:30. He thought he was coming to a Christmas dinner that they have come to in the past. Look at the birthday boy!!! He promises us he was surprised... hopefully he was :)

Dad came in, greeted his friends and family, appetizers were munched on, and the dinner began. We served his favorites... bbq, cole slaw, potato salad, baked beans and the best random side dish... shrimp and grits. Delish!!

During dinner we had some "story times" and some told some pretty good ones on dad. I kept my mouth shut since Christmas is right around the corner and I don't want to put my presents in jeopardy. Dad even gave a little speech... it was sweet!!

Then it was time to cut the cake. And this cake was fabulous. Just a little side note here... if you haven't ever had one of Publix's cakes, they are really really good. Get it with cream cheese icing. Ok, back to the party. Birthday boy blew out the candles and everyone dug into the fabulous desserts.

There were some gifts involved, some gag, including this precious vest, and some real ones. He got some pretty good stuff even though people weren't supposed to bring gifts.

Just another random shot of the festivities. It was so good to have family, old friends, and new friends there to celebrate.

The Rawlins and the Monroe girls (with several new last name changes). Our parents have been friends for 35 something years. Can you believe it?! When I think about 2 families in particular that my parents have been friends with for this long, I pray that Matt and I can keep precious friends like this in our life for that long.

Sister and Steven, aren't they the cutest?!

Our family!! The night was so much fun. We had such a wonderful day getting to celebrate 60 wonderful years with Pops. Happy Birthday Dad! Please note the biggest party animal of the night had to be Fulton. He wore himself out... it's 10:30 am and he is still asleep. This is unheard of. Happy Christmas Eve!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas At The Lake

Friday after school we loaded the car and headed to the lake to celebrate Christmas with all the fam coming in town. Mom, Aunt Susan and mema slaving over a delicious pizza dinner.

Aunt Keri and Uncle Pete got there just in time for the festivities too.

The guys added some grilling to the already random dinner we had going on.

This little fella was ready in his Christmas Pj's to snuggle with anybody who wanted him. This was our first adventure away from home since little bambino entered the world. I think we should invest in a small trailer to haul behind the car from now on... he requires so much stuff.

Saturday morning we woke up to a beautiful day on the lake and spent the afternoon visiting one of Papa's grocery stores. Fulton slept through the tour, we will tell him about it later. After a delicious fine meal at Jacks, the only restaurant in the town, we just happened to find out that Santa was going to be at the town bank for free pictures. Hot dog!! We stopped by, made sister run in and ask if Santa really was there and the lady said, Who?! He was indeed there and we got a picture... success!!

Harley was thrilled to be out and about and get to go on a little vacation. He loves being at the lake and roaming through the leaves. I think he was a little disappointed when he found out "that crying thing" was coming too.

We came back that afternoon, did some snuggling with pops, had an afternoon nap and got ready for dinner and Christmas with the fam.

This year we decided to do presents first. Our aunt Susan decided to add a little "game" to the fun and while we were at Papa's grocery store we were all to find the strangest item we could, purchase it, put it in a brown paper bag and we would all choose a gift later. Random. But it was fun. Matt and I left with hemorroidal cream and spicy hot spam.

Mark and Katie's little boy, Caleb, entertained us all during the gifts. I think he enjoyed the bows and wrapping paper more than anything. It will be fun next year when Fulton and Caleb can get into some trouble together.

Our little fam opening gifts. Fulton got some fun stuff. He was a champ the whole weekend!!

To say he was a little overwhelmed with all the madness would be an understatement. A little overstimulation for the poor guy.

We had a delicious dinner complete with "Crackers" and paper crowns. This is some crazy tradition our family has to all open these Chinese crackers. You pop them open and each person has a prize and a paper crown. And you have to eat with yours on.

And the other table. Thanks to sister for taking these pics. We will have to picture her in our mind with her blue crown on. Please notice on the far end of the left side, we actually got our Papa to wear his pink crown.

Fulton was pumped about spending some time with his great-grandparents.

After dinner the girls did our annual Christmas ornament swap. I got a good one!! This was my third ornament swap in the last 2 weeks. We have lots of new cute ornaments for our tree. It was a blessed weekend spent with our family. We are so thankful for our families!!