Monday, December 28, 2009


I'm finally posting some pictures from the month of December! What an accomplishment! Naturally, the first picture-worthy event was the outing to get the tree. It doesn't work out every year to go cut down our own Christmas tree, but we try. This year was one of the ones that it worked out. The Saturday after we got back from Mississippi we had planned to just catch up around the house and wait to get our tree until the following week. When the snow started coming down we changed our mind. It was the first snow of the year for us and the kids were so excited. Since it's hands-down more fun to get the tree in the snow we decided to head out after all.All bundled and ready.

The view going down the freeway. We were so thrilled with this first snowy scene of the year.

A view of the tree farm.

We brought a sled along to pull the little ones and to pull the tree back to the car if necessary.

Almost ready...

The hunt begins.

Tired, but happy, happy to get to be out here and play.

Wild man Ben didn't take long to be totally covered in snow and red with cold.

I asked Will to shake the snow off of a tree so that I could get a good look at it. This is how he came back. You can tell that he enjoyed the snow shower.

Everyone took turns playing with the sled while we looked.

Ben pulled Calvin on it for quite a while.

You can picture a few snowballs flying around, I'm sure. :) The tree in the foreground was shaken off and presented for my inspection. The funny thing is that we ended up choosing the tree in the background to take home.

There it is. The not-so-perfect, but perfect-for-us tree!

Cutting it down...

The boys took some turns at sawing and learned a little technique from dad.

Carrying it back up the hill to the car now.

Millie's pigtails meet the fresh air as we took off her snowgear to get into the car.

Heading home. I think I was a little camera-happy.

We thought Cecily was cute with her blanket pulled around her head. She's a snuggly little thing.

She's not sure what she thought of that whole thing. She's pretty glad to be back in her seat with her favorite blanket to cuddle. She even has a piece of a candy cane in her mouth that the tree farm owners gave to the kids.

Monday, December 21, 2009


Peter's sister, Leslie, just sent me some pictures that were taken the day that we spent with her and her husband.John and Leslie live in Oxford, Mississippi. There's a lovely town square there with wonderful shops. John and Leslie took our children to an amazing candy store there and let them pick out a bag of assorted candy. The above picture was taken with their candy in front of the store.
Then we went home with them and they fed us a marvelous lunch. We had delicious gumbo served on rice and summer squash.

Next was a walk up the long driveway to their landlord's house to see some of their animals.

This is one of the little dogs that belongs to the landlord. We also saw some donkeys and chickens and roosters.

Running around.

I like this one. :)

There is a mowed path through a nearby hayfield that we decided to explore. Beautiful time of day. The light out there is always amazing.

Then it actually began to get dark. The kids played some on the rolled hay bales. I think the men and boys played some football in the front yard before we headed off back to grandma's house to eat chili with the cousins and other family.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


My entry this week for the photo contest over at I heart faces :This is the tree frog that my kids named "Algonquin." My daughter, Amelia, loved holding him in her palm, where he fit perfectly.
Check out the I heart Faces blog to see hundreds of other pet entries!

Monday, December 14, 2009


I was able to import some photos that my sister-in-law, Tessa, took of our time with her family in Tennessee and also of our time together at mom and dad's house in Mississippi. It was a little tricky to get them in order, but I succeeded with all but one. This one is out of order. I thought it worth including anyway. Making it clear: Tessa is married to Peter's brother, Mitchell. They just had their third child 5 weeks before our trip. Their eldest son, Ethan, is a similar age to our Calvin (6 months younger) and their daughter, Emma, is similar to Amelia (9 months younger). The new baby, Micah, is about a year younger than Cecily. They all live outside of Nashville, TN. We typically stay overnight at their house on our way to Mississippi. We did that this year, as well as stay with them on our way home. We really enjoyed the time with them and getting to spend time holding the new baby. :)

Alright, back to the point, the above picture was taken in Mississippi. These are my boys and Ethan eating chili in Grandma Betty's and Grandpa Jerry's living room. They're the overflow that couldn't fit at the kitchen table. They didn't mind, can't you tell?

Back to the beginning. I guess Tessa took this picture of the boys whistling "Yankee Doodle" together for their cousin. Ben's whistler is pretty capable and he and Sam have conspired to make music together.

Emma and Amelia, so happy to see each other.

Ben, Calvin and Ethan spent a lot of time at Grandma's house up on this top bunk, enjoying all of Grandma's many picture books.

Thanksgiving day, waiting for picture time, out on Grandma's porch.

Amelia was trying out the picture bench.

We finally came inside to finish the wait. Here they are enjoying some of Grandma's books too.

All ready now...

Hurray! We finally took the family picture. On the far left is Mitchell, Tessa and family. Next is sister, Leslie, and husband, John. Then our family, minus Ben, who somehow got put on the right end. Next, sister, Anna, husband, Walter and children Holden and Webber. Last, is Jerry and Betty or mom and dad.

Once the picture was taken, the eating could commence. The children ate at the kitchen table.

All of the Jones grand kids, all together.

The adult table.

More adults...

Anna and Walt.

The youngest in the group, Micah Brett Jones. We enjoyed him immensely.

Heading outside after the meal.

They were able to fish a little over the barbed wire fence here in front of the house.

I like this picture. This is Ethan and Calvin eating their dessert together on the porch. Calvin just SO enjoys his cousin. We found them together constantly.

Grandpa with his granddaughters. :)

The next day, Friday, we came back to mom and dad's (we stayed at a hotel) and spent a little more time with Mitchell and Tessa and kids before they headed back home.

Betty (mom), Tessa and myself took the kids down the road to see some horses.

The horses were very friendly. They must be used to people feeding them or something.

Even Cecily got to pet them.

Running around, exercising the little legs.

There was a little slide that the girls spent a lot of time on, taking turns.

Tessa tried to get a picture of them all looking, but it was pretty hard to do.

The cousins in the back of Grandpa's truck. After this, the Mitchell Jones family headed home and we stayed for another day before we drove to their house to spend the night on our way home. We are so blessed to have such wonderful family. We enjoyed this family time immensely.