Wednesday, December 28, 2011

First time on skates!

A couple of weeks ago we were invited to roller skate with the boys' alert cadet group and their families.  What a blast! This was the first time our boys had skated and I was impressed with how well they caught on.  What was especially fun was getting to skate too. :)  It had been years since I had done this...and since I wasn't pregnant, I couldn't wait to get out there.
Jud didn't get to skate...although I am sure he would have been a go-getter! He did escape a couple of times and run out into the rink before we could catch him. :)

BJ multi-tasking again.
Half-way through our evening Justin decided he was good enough to give Johnny lessons. It was pretty cute to see them both out there wobbling together. :)
Can you guess what the boys want to buy with their Christmas money? Daddy was looking up rollerblades on Craigslist tonight.

our boys

watching a Christmas movie
making soup
tummy time

Friday, December 23, 2011

Our Christmas Letter ~ 2011

We are thankful we have made it through the year well
here’s a few things about our life in 2011, we’d like to tell:

Took a trip to the beach in the spring
Bought a full-sized van- talk about bling bling!

Continued to teach our boys at home while we walked by the way,
Reading’, writin’, rithmatic, and learning what God has to say.

Piano and fiddle practice are daily for my oldest 3
that would be Jared, Jesse, Justin, but not Judson Lee!

He and John Russel, are waiting in line for their time (age 6)
Knowing them as I do, I’m sure that they’ll do fine.

Received a gift from God in the form of TWIN BOYS! (Joshua Courage, Josiah Christian)
With presents like these- who cares about toys.

Their presence in fills our hearts with love
is there any doubt this was ordained from above?

Our life revolves around our family and the church
centering our lives on those things has never left us in the lurch.

Yes, 2011 is in the can
God has helped us- in this race we have thus ran

His Kingdom is righteousness, peace, and joy
More valuable than houses, land, and wealth- even that favorite toy.

When we are weak He is strong
When other have given up, His grace suffers long.

He forgives our sin and heals our disease
Where else in the in the world could one possibly find these?

He is not a concept, but a person instead
His name is Jesus, have you not read:

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

We love Him because he loved us first
He satisfies every longing and quenches every thirst.

If we amount to anything- if in our lives the fruit comes in
We’ll know without a doubt, it was all because of Him.

Our prayer for you: our family and friends that read this letter, is that you would know
the height, the depth, and the breadth of the LORD our God.

Merry Christmas!

               Much love, The Kuykendalls....BJ, Elaine, Jared, Jesse, Justin, John, Judson, Joshua, and Josiah

Decking the halls.....

I thought our tree was cute this year when we set it up, but now it is deader than dead!  Just because we forgot to water it once early on! Since we are too scared to turn on the lights, we are leaving them off until Christmas day and then our tree is heading outside that evening. I am pretty sure next year's tree will not have this problem. :)

Jud being Jud

This would sum up Judson's enthusiasm for life!  He is a wonderful blessing with a tremendous amount of energy....and curiosity.  I am amazed at how many "no-no's" there are in life as each new day begins with this boy! :)  And someday I will tell you what he did a couple of nights ago.  But not for a year or so....not until it can be one of those things you look back at and laugh. :)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Singing Christmas Tree

A dear couple at church bought us tickets for the Singing Christmas Tree at the Keller auditorium.  This was such a special night for BJ, myself, and our four oldest boys.  (The twins and Jud were left home to be loved on by some church grandmas and Connie Johnson. :) We started our evening out with dinner at Claim Jumper since BJ had won a drawing for a gift certificate at a Pastor's event.  The boys really enjoyed their meals and sharing a giant slice of their famous chocolate cake.  What a treat! Without our 3 littlest ones along BJ and I were able to really focus on our older 4. It was a weird feeling to not need a highchair or feed a baby.

The performance was wonderful and moving. I wondered if it would hold my boys' attention, but I didn't need to worry. When the show was over Justin exclaimed, "oh mommy I really liked that!"


It was cute to hear the boys talk about our fancy evening and ooh and aah over the city lights.  This is a night they will remember for a long time.
BJ and I feel so grateful for these blessings in our lives.  Choosing to have a large family, you can sometimes stop and think, "but wait, how will we ever afford this?" or "we will never be able to do that."  This was just another reminder of God's faithfulness in taking care of our needs and wants. Granted, it might be a while before we eat at Claim Jumper again as a family, but it makes those times all the more cherished and special when we do.  :) 

Our Thanksgiving Christmas

Thanksgiving is celebrated with my side of the family and this year it was held in Woodburn. With all the new babies, we thought this location would be more convenient. :)  Lots of fun and energy when we get the cousins together!  The newest ones especially loved Uncle Isaac's story telling.
We ordered pizza Wednesday evening, saving our cooking energy for the big day. :)
Thank goodness for mom and Ray.  I knew that someday I would have to be a grownup and cook a holiday meal, but with all the work they did, I got out of it again. :)
Paisley Mae is the cutest little bean snapper.

The gym provided hours of entertainment for the children.

BJ read the true story of Squanto to the boys...and girls. It is hard not to see the hand of God protecting and providing for the pilgrims.

Jared and Jesse did a great job decorating the table.

Aunt Amy was in charge of a craft for the cousins to make.  I think she learned of some distinct differences between boys and girls while working with them. :)
Another highlight was playing Bingo. This day was definitely a learning experience.  We packed a lot into our day and didn't get any nap times in.....a few meltdowns were inevitable.  For the most part, Uncle Isaac really hung in there. :)

By the time we opened Christmas gifts everyone was tuckered out.  It was a full day, but a good day.  Can't wait for next year!

By the way, Amy and I heard that the Woodburn Factory Stores were opening at 9pm and we thought it would be fun to go.  As I was driving to the motel near the outlets to pick her up, I started getting a little worried.  I never dreamed it would be so crazy. I just assumed people from our town would be the only ones there at that time.  Boy was I wrong. You should have seen the backup on the freeway. Somehow we managed to find the very last parking spot in the overflow parking.  We had a great much fun to shop just the two of us with no little ones in tow. :)

Thanksgiving Preparations

We had fun preparing for Thanksgiving this year.  The boys loved making these place card candy holders and decorating the table for our meal.  It was a true delight to watch their creativity and excitement.  

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Our little jumpers

It is time for the jump-up!  I think BJ finally found a good way to keep tabs on our Judson while he burns off some energy. :)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Old Photos

I never posted the twins' two week old pictures.  It is hard to believe they are 5 months old now.  We are cherishing our time with these little guys.

Thankfully, our big boys don't change as much in five months. :)
Judson - 2 years (These are their current ages.)
John - 4 years
Justin - 6 years
Jesse - 8 years
Jared - 10 years