Monday, February 8, 2016

Valentine's heart attack 2016

We whipped out our annual Valentine's "heart attack" for Family Home Evening a few weeks before Max took off.
Same old tradition, but all new sentiments about what we love about each other plastered all around the kitchen.
That is, all new except for the one about how great a dancer Dave is (and funny too), because that one comes up multiple times every year...
 Lucy takes this tradition quite seriously.

Here's a sampling from this year:
















Oh man I'm so grateful for our friends the Masons for showing the way on this idea all those years ago.  It makes me so happy every February to be surrounded by so much love.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Claire's birthday

Claire was certain that Max's mission call got moved back a week JUST so that he could be with her on her birthday.  It was last week (HERE).  

Let's talk about how it all went down.

Traditional early-morning breakfast before school:
(complete with candy bar poster)

Everyone looks overjoyed that early in the morning, don't you think? :)

My brother and his family were still staying with us and it was fun to have a couple of them join in for the grand breakfast.

I snagged her from school and we went out to lunch.

Apparently it was the best birthday ever.  All her friends remembered and sent her home with the most thoughtful, sweet things:

Friends "chalked" our driveway before she left for school:

Let's see if we can get a better look at that...
There we go.

Her cousin brought her over a little treat...


The Young Women her age "heart attacked" our front door:
(It's a pretty big deal when you turn twelve in our church because you get to "graduate" from primary and head into Young Women.)

One of the reasons Claire was so over-the-moon that Max would still be here for her birthday was that she was so dang excited to go to the temple (you get to start going when you turn twelve), and she wanted SO much to be there with him.

So she made sure to have her interview and be all prepared so that she'd be ready to go with us all on the very day of her birthday.
And it was quite a night I tell you!

Lucy stayed with my brother's family and the rest of us headed to that wonderful place.

Claire's excitement was tangible.  Made my excitement pretty tangible too.
I felt so overwhelmed with love for that place, for those kids, for that husband, for faith, for the gospel, for a son ready to go share it.

As we were leaving we ran into this cute girl who was leaving the very same day to the very same mission with Max.
How crazy is that?

We basked in the glow of that beautiful place for a few minutes...
Then headed out to dinner at Texas Roadhouse.
Because where else do you celebrate a spiritual high comparable to Texas Roadhouse??  Ha!

We came home for cake and ice cream:



...and then had our Claire-birthday-tradition DANCE PARTY.

The pictures can't do it justice.  It was rockin'.

I don't know how in Heaven's name we forgot our traditional cheek-kissing picture in all that hoopla, but I'll have to add those asap.

I think it's safe to say though, even without the cheek-kissing dealio (ha!) that that birthday of hers was well-celebrated.

I just still can't believe that little sweetie-pie golden-girl of mine is twelve.  
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