Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

From our family to yours, have a Happy New Year!
Jensen Family at Disneyland, December 2010

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas 2010

We spent our Christmas in California with most of the Lambs (Jonny & Jamie were missing) and Joseph's parents.

Even though we were staying part of the time at a condo right across from a beach in San Juan Capistrano, we only went there one day because it was raining the entire week.

The one day it was nice enough to go over to it for a quick walk we even barely even put our feet in.

The storms did make some pretty cool foam on the sand for the kids to play in, though.

Sophie and Austin definitely took advantage of that!

The kids were just happy to finally be outside instead of cooped up indoors for several days.

But we found lots of fun things to keep them entertained, like making gingerbread houses.

Austin and Geoff teamed up to make a train.

Avery and I made a pretty typical house, while Sophie and Julie made a stable for the Baby Jesus with a tree outside it.

We also played a lot of pool, a lot of games, and visited a ton as well.

And everyone got a chance to hold the new baby.

Despite the rain we fit in a couple trips to the pool.

Sophie loved being tossed into the air by her uncles.

The kids were in hog heaven.

We did get one really nice day at the end of our stay in Orange County, so we made a visit to a nearby hotel that sported some pretty amazing ocean views.

Craig and Roberta came into town on the 23rd and we had an early Christmas with them.

Sophie loved being the elf who handed out all the presents.

She also loved all the Fancy Nancy books Gramma Bob gave her.

I got a pretty cool movie night package, complete with my favorite treat: Swedish Fish.

Joseph's Grandma Jensen gave all the great-grandkids hats she knitted. I love the girls' hats with the flowers on them.

Then we traveled to my Grandpa and Maybeth's house where we all stayed for Christmas Eve and Day.

We always start our Christmas Eve activities by reenacting the Christmas story. Sophie was our sweet Mary and Austin our fearless Joseph.

Sophie bravely rode this funny donkey to Bethlehem.

And then she carefully held a real Baby Jesus, our Baby William.

Wise men and shepherds came to visit the holy family.

At last it was Christmas morning. Santa brought Avery a bike so she can ride with Sophie.

I'm not sure she knew just what to make of it, but I'm sure she'll love it once she gets the hang of it.

Abby made all the grandkids plates with their letters and names on it. The girls refuse to eat off anything else now.

We got a great haul of stuff and had a wonderful day.

I'm not sure if I was naughty or nice this year, cuz this is what Santa brought me for Christmas (cuz "All I want for Christmas is you!") Joseph grew out his beard for the month of December. I liked it.

These two had a great Christmas. They got engaged! We're very happy for Julie and Leo and can't wait to celebrate their wedding in June.

We hope you all had a very merry holiday season too. Merry Christmas from (sometimes) sunny California!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Visits with Father Christmas

The girls have had many chances to visit with Santa Claus this year. Fortunately, though, they haven't yet really caught on to the commercialism of Christmas and therefore don't regard him very highly. Christmas is still all about Jesus to them, thank heavens.

Avery asked Santa for some candy for Christmas and then was promptly rewarded with a candy cane by his elf. She's a believer.

Sophie said she was going to ask him for some whiteboard markers. I told her that we already had some of those, so she said she'd just ask him for some more for when ours run out. I love requests that are so easy to fill.

Joseph and I went to our ward Christmas party where each table got to decorate a gingerbread house. All the other tables were done with theirs before we even started, and they all looked so pretty that we felt like being rebellious and doing something different. So we made a bowling alley instead. And guess what? We won second prize, mostly because of Joseph's idea to turn the Christmas tree parts into a bowling lane complete with a ball and pins, and also because the judges were a few deacons who just thought this was funny. The girls loved it when we brought it home and spent the next week eating the candy off it slowly until the gingerbread was so hard that Joseph let them demolish the house with a hammer. How's that for Christmas spirit?!

The Primary also had a Christmas party for the kids where they once again got to sit on Santa's lap. This time Sophie asked Santa to bring Avery a bike (because I told her to say that since I'd gotten Avery a bike earlier that week. I'm sneaky like that.)

We took the Polar Express to the North Pole and saw Santa and his reindeer there. But the line to sit on his lap was too long, so we cheated and snuck through the exit to visit Mrs. Claus instead.

After all, anyone can sit on Santa's lap, but very few get to sit on his wife's.

The girls stuck their heads into these little snowmen.

I wish we could've gotten the entire family into these positions, but we never got the chance. It was a fun trip anyway, complete with a train ride to and from here. We've had a fun Christmas season so far and are excited now to celebrate with family in town! Merry Christmas, everyone!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Family Outings

With Joseph on paternity leave we've been able to do a lot of fun things as a family the past couple weeks.

We went to Bonelli Park and fed the ducks (even the uber aggressive ones that nipped at our toes and legs.)

It was a gorgeous day and the leaves were beautiful. The kids climbed a few trees as we enjoyed a mini picnic and admired the scenery.

We went to Travel Town one night to see Santa and saw these beautiful trains as well.

And we went to Disneyland before the holiday crowds packed it. Our new favorite ride is "Toy Story Mania" at California Adventure. What a blast!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Giving Thanks

Our Thanksgiving this year was a little crazy and a lotta fun.

Gobble Gobble! (Is that not the cutest little bum you've ever seen?!)

The holiday really started a week early with a Thanksgiving feast at Sophie's school.

Daddy, Avery, and Gramma Lamb got to attend it with Sophie. And I'm sure that Sophie and Avery truly considered it a feast to surpass all others because the menu included apple slices, carrots, mac & cheese, and goldfish crackers. Just like the Pilgrims. ;)

We held our annual Pie Night at our bishop's home this year since I'd just had a baby a week before. It was still a success. We had 14 pies total and over 40 people there to eat them and we had a great time.

Avery's shirt says it all.

The guys kicked off the morning of Thanksgiving with a turkey bowl that my brothers Peter and Scott also went and played in (and Leo, too). It was a beautiful day for a game. Do you see those mountains behind them? We live in such a picturesque place, and the weather can't be beat.

Joseph was happy to come home with a W, even though nobody was really keeping score, right? He made a great quarterback for his team.

I love this picture because you can see Leo catching the football with Scott running full board toward him. I have no idea how this play ended, but I can only imagine what happened about 2 seconds after this shot.

Meanwhile, the women folk were working hard at home to get the big dinner all prepared. I loved having it at my home this year because I got to pull out all the fancy stuff that I never use, like my china and goblets and serving dishes that just sit in the hutch looking pretty. Sophie was cute because she couldn't stop talking about how beautiful everything looked and literally dragged each person in the house into the dining room at least twice to admire the table before the dinner even began.

Did I mention that my entire family came for the holiday? It was partially because since William had been born the week before and my Mom came down to help that meant that there wouldn't be a big dinner going on at their house in Utah, so my Dad and brothers and sister just decided to come down here for it. But really it was a great excuse to get us all together again, and it was great fun for all. Thanks for coming and squeezing into our home, Everyone!

We have a Lamb tradition of going around the table towards the end of the meal and saying what we're most thankful for this year. I definitely said that I was thankful for these two.

And I'm definitely thankful for these two, too.

This is what William said he's thankful for.

After dinner we turned on some Christmas tunes and had an impromptu dance party. Even though I was tied down to the couch the whole time by my baby boy, it was fun to watch all the others get their groove on, especially the 4 kiddos. That was probably my favorite part of the whole weekend.

Since we were all together again we decided to take a family picture. We were lucky enough to get a lot with all the kids looking and William was so well-behaved through the whole thing.

We also got some of just our little family. Wow, we have so much to be thankful for and were truly counting our many blessings this Thanksgiving!