Unexpected gifts.

Today my house had its carpets cleaned. It is an old house plus 2 kids plus a puppy learning to hold her bladder made for some pretty gross spots. A woman in the church overheard me asking someone where we could rent a steam cleaner and within a week had arranged professional cleaners to come…

An Advent prayer.

A prayer we read tonight with a new group of friends:   Newborn Beginning…After Caesar The Christ Child is about to be born, the one promised by the angel. Mary’s “fullness of time” has arrived. Except that the birth is scheduled according to the emperor: A decree went out that all should be numbered. Caesar decreed…

The Christmas card debate.

In the learning curve of life in NJ, we discovered something about Christmas in schools around here…they don’t acknowledge it. Yes, there is a Christmas store for students, but no Christmas concerts, parties or even Christmas break. It is winter recess and you cannot give out Christmas cards. Strangely enough, if your kid spills the…

A year in review.

2013 was a year of big change for our family.  Here are some glimpses into that year through our Instagram photos!

Our little town.

Our little town is ridiculously cute, especially now with all the Christmas decorations. Tonight we went to our staff Christmas party, then came home and wandered down Main Street. Carolers were strolling the sidewalks singing, stores were open and offering treats and candles were lighting up the sidewalks. The Baptist church had a live nativity…

A night out.

Today’s Advent activity for the girls was a fun night with a babysitter…which meant they got to hang out with one of their favorite people(Margaret) while Jeff and I went out. We headed into Old City to catch Jennifer Knapp and Margaret Becker in concert in a little pub. We ended up sitting right beside…

Snow Day.

Today’s advent activity was putting up Christmas lights outside. Then we walked out of church at noon to discover snow was falling…2 inches in a hour and by dinner time 9 inches. The girls spent most of the day playing in it. And the Christmas lights still got put up.

Winter in the city.

There is something beautiful about Christmas in NYC. It’s even better when you share it with family. Today we met up with Jeff’s cousins and their kids for an afternoon in NYC. Our girls are 3 months older than their second cousins, so there was much fun to be had! At one point in the…

Welcoming a new friend.

Our friends have just welcomed their fifth daughter this past weekend. Last night I sent them this text: Can we bring you dinner tomorrow night and meet the baby? And by dinner I mean pizza or sushi. They said yes and tonight we brought pizza and met the littlest Bell girl and she is gorgeous!…

Craft time with Dad

A fallen tree branch cut into rounds, sharpies and some glitter glue equals craft time with Jeff. The girls each made several ornaments for family and friends. Simple, sweet and memory making.

Our boy: Bestman

During my trip to Africa this summer, one of my tasks was to take photos.  Specifically I was taking photos for our sponsorship program. It was one of the highlights of my trip. Taking pictures of kids who have never seen either a camera like mine or themselves on a picture is hilarious! Some I…

Toes.

There are several activities that the girls look forward too and nag me to make sure happen during Advent. Fort building, parent and kid switch, going to see Christmas lights and tonight’s activity: painting each other’s toenails.  I think they love this the best because even Jeff’s nails get painted. His has sparkly polka dots,…