Thursday, February 26, 2009

Teaching Lent to my kids...

I struggled this week with how to teach Lent to my kids. It's not an easy concept. As Ash Wednesday came and went, I came upon a wonderful idea online. This activity called for the kids to create their own clay pot, and then each Sunday of lent we will place a small item in the pot that represents an aspect of our God's love and mercy. It is perfect! Today we created our pots. As I looked at their amazing creations, I kept thinking about how we are all truly imperfect vessels. Amazing how something a bit lopsided and crooked can still be so beautiful in the eyes of it's Creator. Happy Lent.

Friday, February 20, 2009

GRRRR-eat Day!

We had a wonderful Friday! It started when I finished ONE of Noah's tiger socks I am knitting him. He is so excited, and really hopes the second one will go faster!!

This afternoon we headed to the GR Children's museum to meet our friends the Landrigans. The kids had a blast playing and getting to see their long time friends again. The moms enjoyed catching up as much as possible while keeping an eye on 7 kids. At one point as our gang was moving to another room another mom asked if there was a show going on in there (otherwise, why was the room clearing out!?) She was surprised to hear it was just our kids changing rooms! Everytime we line them up for a photo I am reminded of the first one we took on their couch when the kids were 6 months old. Time flies.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

"I'm protecting my girls from the T-Rex"

This is how I found my darling kids this afternoon. They were watching "Land Before Time" in the basement while I...ok to be honest, I was finishing a book :) upstairs. When I came down stairs to check on them, this is how I found them. Noah was protecting them from the T-Rex in the movie, "they were scared." Precious.

Speaking of T-Rex...earlier this week Noah and I spent over an hour building this model. The girls watched closely, and added their help when needed. We were pretty proud of our efforts (take that.... elementary teacher who told me I was no good at puzzles!!).

Finally, Monday night we enjoyed visiting Brendan's school (My cousin Michelle's oldest) for his Market Day. All of his classmates had created items and were selling them, making change, etc. The kids had a blast spending their money on great items! It was also great to see Michelle and her fam! The kids enjoyed checking out one of the two possible school buildings they may attend in the fall.

What fun!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Love Day!

Ready to donate their toys!

The "Walk for Warmth" in Zeeland.


Sweet Sophie enjoying the basketball game!

My Valentine's at the basketball game!

Yummy Valentines lunch at Froggys!

We had a wonderful Valentines Day! We decided to take advantage of the day to teach the kids about showing love to others. We started the day by doing the "Walk for Warmth" in Zeeland. A 2 mile walk (very slippery!) to raise money to help pay for heat in homes that cannot afford it. It was a very understandable cause for the kids, and they were excited to take money out of their piggy banks and call their grandparents to donate. Noah was so excited when he called Grandma and Grandpa Bonnema he asked them to join us, and they did! It was cold and slippery, but the kids did great!! After snuggling at home to warm up our next stop was the Women and Children's floor at Holland Hospital. For Christmas we gave the kids each a $10 gift card to spend on toys for someone else. This was a perfect opportunity. We shopped last week and they joyfully delivered their loot to the hospital on Saturday. 2 years ago Abby was on that floor with pnemonia right before Christmas. A family brought in gifts for the kids on the floor. It was a small gift, but sure brought a sparkle back to Abby's eye and we wanted to do that for someone else. The nurses were THRILLED and loved chatting with the kids. After a lunch at Froggy's we went to watch part of the Hope girls basketball game. They were wearing pink and collecting money for Breast Cancer Research. The wonderful day ended with an amazing steak dinner made by chef Tom and chocolate fondue! It was perfect. Nothing like a day with the people you love most, showing love to others.

(Does anyone know why my pictures are always out of order...can I change them around??)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentines Week

We have had a wonderful week getting ready for Valentines Day! Noah was excited to wear his new Red Wings Jersey to Hockey skating Tuesday night! We enjoyed playdough making, cookie baking, and lots of love! The kids had a blast at their preschool party in school today! Tomorrow we have a wonderful day planned to teach the kids the importance of showing love to others. Stay tuned! Happy Valentines Day weekend! Love!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Birthday Party

We had a wonderful birthday party for family yesterday. The kids planned the entire thing from the theme DINOSAURS to the menu (herbavore pizza's and carnivore pizzas with a spinich salad for the herbivores and frozen "tree sweets" aka frozen grapes). After the party temps were in the upper 40's so we headed to the beach :) We had a blast climbing on "ice mountians" and walking carefully out the pier. It was a little chillier than at home, but we loved it! What a perfect day of celebration of our miracle 5 year olds!

The Birthday!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Celebration begins!

Today the kids celebrated their birthday at preschool. We packed dinosaur goodie bags for them to give their friends. Their wonderful teachers were sure to have 3 birthday signs for the chairs. They sang "Happy Birthday" to each one! It was darling!! Let the celebration begin!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Super Fun Weekend in Chicago!

We just returned from a WONDERFUL weekend in Chicago with the kids and Bill and Joan. It was one of the kids Christmas gifts from them, and we got to tag along! Joan had planned every moment of the trip perfectly! We loved every single thing we did! Some of the highlights included riding in MANY different forms of transportation (van, train, cab-car, LIMO, bus, "L", cab-van...). The Children's Museum at Navy Pier (AMAZING!), Tea and Shopping at American Girl for the ladies (see Joan's blog for pictures, Tom had my camera), Lego store and Cheesecake factory for the boys, a wonderful hotel with beautiful rooms and very colorful couches in the lobby, great food, The Shedd Aquarium, and a play!! The kids were amazing even though exhausted from all the fun. It was truly a perfect weekend! Enjoy the pictures!!
Thank you so much Bill and Joan!