31 March 2016

Easter Sunday

This cutie helped me make Hot Cross Buns in the morning.


We usually make Resurrection Rolls but this year, we decided to change it up. And my, were they delicious!!
Raisins, cinnamon, brown sugar, and icing. Yes, please!


A photo of my little peeps before church.


Cute outtakes. :)


Blessed!!!


Easter service was held at Shadow Hills High School this year and it was AMAZING!!


Our dear friends, the Blodgett's.


The Smith family in their beautiful Saris.


 Our beloved Mr. Roy always gets his hug from the girls.


Jacob & Ellie.


Isaiah looks like a prince!


Elizabeth getting some bunny ears from her brother Joshua.


We were so happy that Grandpa joined us for brunch.


I made this easy ham and cheese puff pastry. It was SO good!


Layers of flaky and buttery puff pastry, carving board ham, dijon mustard, and gruyere cheese.
A big hit! I will definitely be making this again.


We enjoyed a simple brunch that included deviled eggs (the girls' favorite) and fruit.


And these! We made Bird's Nest Brownie Bites in the morning, too. Think German Chocolate Cake filling. Yum!
(The one in front with 3 eggs represents our little chickadees). :))


Zach's first egg hunt!


There he goes!


Faith stops for a quick photo.


He found one!


This boy is ball crazy so naturally, all his eggs were "balls."


He ended up either kicking them or throwing them into the pool.


Which then led to THIS when he tried to go after them. Silly boy!  


A change of clothes later and he was back at it.


Zach's eggs were filled with cheddar bunnies. One of his favs.


Faith found the Golden Egg!


They had a blast!


The girls took an afternoon dip in the pool.


And had fun racing in their floats.

I love Easter.

Perhaps it's because we celebrate the GREATEST day in all of history when God raised Jesus from the grave. Without Easter, all hope would be lost. But because of Easter, we have the assurance that even when we die, we will live (John 11:25).

I don't know about you but that's the best news ever! An eternal life-- free from tears, pain, fear, sickness, sin, or evil? Spending forever in the presence of God and Jesus and all of our loved ones who believed and went before us? YES, PLEASE!!

That's why Easter service always gets me. It has me in tears as we sing and worship the One who bore our sins and gave His life so that we could live. For some people, I know Easter may be one of only 2 days a year they attend church but when you see some of those same people, moved by the Holy Spirit, to come forward on Easter Sunday and receive the free gift of salvation... well, let's just say, I'm so thankful God created waterproof mascara! I don't care how many times I see it, there's something so awesome, exciting, and incredibly humbling about witnessing people of all ages surrender their lives to the Lord. 

As the world becomes increasingly violent and evil, I sometimes wonder why God just doesn't return and take us all home. But it's moments like the one I witnessed on Easter that remind me...
 "The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." -2 Peter 3:9
God loves me and He loves YOU.

That is the resounding message of Easter.

Hallelujah! He is Risen!!


27 March 2016

Decorating Easter Eggs

Faith's little "garden" egg.


 Grace's pretty cross egg.


 Lots of sparkles!


Trying to keep Zach from pulling down all the eggs. :)


Too much fun!


These pastel and glitter eggs turned out beautiful!


So, last year, right after Easter, I stumbled across these "fake" decorating eggs at WalMart. They look totally real and the best part was they were on clearance for 50% off so that made them only $1/dozen.
WAY cheaper than REAL eggs!

I snatched up a few dozen and stored them away in our seasonal bin until I broke them out this week. I also stock up on decorating supplies after Easter. It's the only way to go! I have to say, I love the fact that the eggs won't be going bad any time soon, or EVER!  

Plus, you can always keep the ones the kids decorated this year and it would be fun to look back on them next year. Either way, I'm stocking up again for next year!


26 March 2016

Cupcakes, birthday girls, and school!

For the girls' actual birthday on Tuesday, our sweet Jill made the girls the most DELICIOUS cupcakes to share with their classmates and teachers. On top of looking absolutely adorable (with the girls' favorite colors), it was a scrumptious pink velvet cake with cream cheese and vanilla bean frosting. Oh my! Truly, almost every person commented, "That was the BEST cupcake I've ever had in my life!"


And just like that, THEY ARE TEN!


Their class was singing happy birthday to them at recess. This is what they always do when they get embarrassed. :))


Little brothers came to celebrate, too!


Their beloved 4th/5th grade combo class! What a bond they've created.


Zach enjoys the tire swing with his sissies.


Zach always finds his way to a ball somehow. I just love how great these kids are with him.


Chase and Johnny encouraging him to play and throw the ball.


Faith looking after her brother.


Grace is always caring for Zach and chasing after him.

All the birthday festivities both at home and at school have truly been memorable for the girls.

We didn't do a big party last year and I wanted to make turning 10 for the girls, a big milestone celebration.  

Jill joking said that maybe I should start planning for next year's party but at this point, I'm thinking 13 might be a good age for the next party. :) We shall see!

Life is a gift and it is short. Everyday is worth celebrating in some way, big or small.

It's hard to believe ten years have gone by so quickly. What a joy the girls have been!

Glory to God for the privilege of being their parents.

Happy Happy 10th Birthday, Faith & Grace!

You are loved and treasured by us and by the God who created you and delights in you.


20 March 2016

Faith & Grace's Paint/Horse Party!

 Well, we were planning to have the painting in the backyard but since it was going to be in the 90's we moved it inside for more comfort.  

The party theme was inspired by Saige, the American Girl books and movie. Just like the Saige, the girls love to paint and they love horses!


I made the easiest paint chip banner with these vibrant colors.


The gorgeous cake was made by my dear friend, Jill. She's AMAZING!! 


 The colors were so fun and bright. Just like the girls! :))
Loved these artist's snack plates/palettes and napkins.


We tried to incorporate the horse and paint theme with little details.


Another shot of the beautiful cake!


 Snacks for the artists while they paint.


More fun party decorations!




 We had a fun "Create Your Own Nachos" Bar with all the fixins (which I didn't get a picture of) but
it was a big hit with kids and adults alike!


The painting stations are ready!


The artists are, too!


Melanie did an outstanding job with the kids.


Kylie is focused.


Taking shape.


 Karen & Ben.


 Janette, Brandon, and Rory.


 Zach hanging out with Dad and Halmoni.


Me and Madi.


Love their individuality!


Almost done!


Sweet Karah, their mentor and friend.


Beautiful!  


Amazing artists! I LOVE how different each one turned out!


 Time for cake and ice cream!


 Confetti cake on the top half with chocolate on the bottom. It was SO YUMMY and there was not a bite left!!


Cousins.


 Marsha, mom, and Emily.


Madilyn exploring the backyard.


Zach climbing on tables.


Wading in the pool. 


 Brandon with his girls.


 Karen takes Sylvie for a dip.


 Uncle Rich teaching the kids a new game.


 Time to open presents.


 Friends enjoying the weather on the grass.


 They loved all the pool toys and crafts they received!


 Hugs for Halmoni.


 Family photo.


Soaker gun fight!!


Silly kids!


Aren't these adorable?!!
(Jill, you outdid yourself, my friend!)

The girls said, "IT WAS THE BEST BIRTHDAY PARTY EVER!!"

I'd have to agree. It was pretty special and one to remember!

A super FUN way to kick off turning TEN!!

I can't believe our little ladies will be 10 on Tuesday. We're into double digits now, folks! Time sure flies. I still remember the girls' first birthday and it doesn't seem like that was so long ago.
Only six more years and they'll be driving. Double yikes!! :))

We're so happy they had a blast at their party!

We love you so much and can't wait to see what God has is store for your futures.


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