Friday, December 26, 2014

Merry Christmas and Joyeux Noel 2014

This year we did not travel or have any guests for Christmas.  We did host an open house for our church on Christmas Eve, but other than that we enjoyed a quiet celebration as a family.  
Christmas Eve started out as a beautiful day.  The kids enjoyed getting to jump on the trampoline in the sunshine.

While the sun was shining and the kids were playing I walked into the market in our city.  It is about a 15 minute walk by myself.  The market is held on Wednesday and Saturday, Christmas Eve included.  While at the market I ran into my favorite bakery.  Here is their display of Christmas cakes, YUM!  I picked out one with hazelnuts and praline.  It was delicious!

I picked up some oysters for Jon at the market.  Oysters are a tradition French Christmas food and they always have a bunch of different sizes for sale in the markets and even on the side of the road.

I bought them, but it was Jon's job to clean them.

We had so much fun at our open house that I forgot to take any pictures!  We enjoyed spending the evening with our church family and then it was time to send the kids off to bed.

This collection of candles in the fireplace make me so happy.  It is such a peaceful space to enjoy.

When you have 4 kids even 1 present for each can seem like a lot of presents.  

One of my favorite set ups for this nativity.  I love this beautiful reminder of the season.

And just like that it was Christmas morning!  I was woken up by the whole crew around 6:30 and we wasted no time getting downstairs. 

This poor little guy has been battling a fever and runny nose, but he is still adorable.

Addison is growing up so fast and has asked a lot of questions about Santa and logistics this year.  

Malachi trying out the phone on his new tricycle.

Legos from Grandma and Poppa!

Malachi got lots of 'help' opening his presents.

Safety first!

A Furby, I am so glad she likes this, but I am ready to throw it out the window.

The boys got matching Bumble bee transformers and they were so excited, Thanks Nannie and GeeGee.

Malachi was pretty excited about a new sippy cup.

I got some pretty awesome presents, but being able to watch all of my kids open their presents and enjoy their smiles was the best thing.

Time for breakfast, in France that means a chocolate dipped cream puff.  They were amazing, thanks to our friend Judy for sharing those.

All of this was accomplished by the time the sun was coming up.  It was a beautiful sunrise in Paris.  I am so thankful for the opportunity to spend another Christmas here.  I hope you all had a special Christmas and enjoyed celebrating the birth of our Saviour.  

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Party Party Woot Woot! Garrett!

Who was excited about turning four?  Garrett!!!

This was the first year that Garrett got to have a real birthday party.  

One of his friends has a birthday very close to his so we were able to have a party for the two of them.

The kids all had so much fun, and it was so fun to be able to celebrate our sweet Gare Bear.

Addie and Anna, the big sisters, had a good time together.

Then on Garrett's actual birthday we celebrated Garrett again.  He didn't completely understand the 2 days of celebrations, but he was okay with it.

Sweet Addie

Ben  getting ready to dig into the strawberry cake.

Garrett's favorite place to sit is on his dad's lap.

The strawberry cake was a big hit with everyone.

Garrett is such a funny man, I love that he is a part of our family.  

Chateau d'Escrimant and the Voie de la Liberte

While my mom was in town, Jon and I took advantage of having a baby sitter and headed out of town for the night.  You can read all about the chateau on my other blog, Brocante Treasures.  Here are a couple photos from our night away.  

Officially this was our celebration for our birthdays.  I didn't get any pictures from Jon's actual birthday, but he did get a yummy dinner and brownies.  

We had a great time together!

On the way to the chateau we found a monument from WWII.  I love the pieces of history that can be found all over France.

The Voie de la Liberte follows the path shown above.  

The plaque says you can find one of these markers every kilometer for over 1,000 kilometers.

It is always nice to see the American flag.   This was a very fitting activity to help celebrate Jon's birthday.

More birthday fun to come!

Holiday Boutique

At the beginning of December there was an event at Addie and Ben's school that I had volunteered to organize.  It was a pretty big job, and thankfully I had a great team to help get it done.  While I was at the event I got this photo, my team of super heroes were ready to protect  the world.  

My mom had come for a visit and brought all of these fun costumes with her.  She had a happy family ready to try them all on.

Later in the day the family came up to the event.

The kids got to do crafts, 

lots of crafts.

Then Santa came!

Nannie was such a good helper with all of the crafts.

Garrett got his face painted with a dragon, 

it was pretty awesome.  

We had ove 40 great vendors, one of the only ones I actually got to shop at was Paris Etcetera.
They have beautiful souvenirs of Paris and they can customize pretty much anything.  The plate on the right in this picture can be customized with your family and I think it would be an amazing piece to take away from our time here.

One of the popular tables at our market is the American Foods table, or the Hard to Find Foods Table as it was known this year.  This is how it looked first thing in the morning.  

Look at all of that cereal!  The prices were roughly what the item would cost in the US, only in Euros.  You can find a lot of these things in Paris, but you pay a lot for them here.  I have seen Lucky Charms as high as 11 euros a box.  

This was the Hard to Find Food Table at the end of the day.  It was a successful sale. 

My friend, Lindsay, was a huge help on the day of the event.  She did a little bit of everything, including helping out with Malachi.  

I was feeling very festive that day.

The Holiday Boutique was a big event, and I had fun, but I am glad that it is over. Now on to all the birthday celebrations in our house in December.