Sunday, December 29, 2013

Silas' first Christmas

Happy Birthday Jesus!
I ran out of food coloring so my red velvet cake was pink velvet. I also substituted butter milk with half and half. I don't recommend this. It's sweet and edible, but not moist and amazing. 
Our first Christmas in our home meant Matthew had the carving honors. At least the main dish turned out better than Jesus' birthday cake.
Dollar store toy was a hit! A train that goes in circles.... who would have thought... gotta love how simple it is when we have our first Christmas. Why change it?
Loved seeing friends who came in town with some new additions to the group. Silas looks ginormous already. Someone please slow the clock down!
Silas is blessed to have many loving grandparents. Didn't get a pic with the grandfathers this year, but Silas was loving the sugar from his Gramma.
Our tradition: Smith family Christmas morning brunch. Oh so delicious!
Is it okay that Silas was flirting with my step sisters?
Dee Dee was excited to introduce Silas to his first football game.
Uncle Matt may have caused a few tears when he first saw Silas, but they quickly bonded over some puffs and football.
Half-time snooze. Several Christmases makes me pooped too buddy.
Congrats to the newly engaged couple. Welcome to the fam Brandon!
Yes I do Silas. I'll even share my water with you cause I love you so much.
We are so thankful that so much of our family traveled to Roswell this Christmas. It was a true blessing to stay in our home this year. As a "Four Christmases" kind of group, we were happy to stay put for once. We missed a few members, but had a great Christmas. We are thankful for our health, home, and so many blessings we can't even count. 2013 was a year we won't ever forget.

~Blessed Buster

Sunday, December 22, 2013

When life is messy, eat it.

Sometimes life gets messy, so I figured it was time to let Silas explore that fact for himself. Some old baby food and a paint brush were the perfect tools. We gotta smile when life gets messy, right?
Silas took his first music class at church, and loved hanging with the other babes. Jingle Jam was fun, but Silas kind of liked eating the bells more than ringing them. I'm not surprised in the least...
This is hands down my favorite face that Silas makes... his dimple says it all: "Mommy, you're just crazy!"
We went shopping for our Christmas dinner, and Silas wouldn't let go of the bacon. He's already just like his daddy.
Easy pre-Christmas dinner that is festive and tasty:  vegetable pasta with chicken, peas, edamame, paprika, tomato sauce and some other spices. Mmmmmm.... Just warming up the abdomen for the main event.
~CubBuster

Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas with the Smiths #1

The dictionary defines tradition as "the handing down of statements, beliefs, legends, customs, information, etc., from generation to generation, especially by word of mouth or by practice." 
I  have always loved traditions, especially Christmas traditions. I'm not sure what it is, but I think I just love things that come from the past. I love period-piece movies, vintage decor, and hearing stories about "the good ole days."  I guess I was just born in the wrong century. Well, I know that the holidays run away from us, but I am hoping to pass along just a few of my favorite Christmas traditions and memories to Silas. 

Tradition #1: cut down our own tree
I think the 30 year-old, pictured here, pulled a hammy this year
It was a chilly day for tree picking, but we loved it.
Tradition #2: make homemade rice krispie treats while setting up the tree.
Tradition #14: listen to my favorite Christmas song, "O Holy Night" and just stare at the beautifully lit tree.
Silas and I went to help Matthew decorate his door at work, and I came up with the 12 days of Smithmas (I totally think he should have one the contest.) All dollar tree decorations- I'm just saying.
Silas liked meeting his potential girlfriend, Caroline Shugart, last week. She's precious!
We also had fun at Max's first birthday party.
Happy Birthday Max! Love the Lyons fam!
After several kisses to this new guy Silas met, he realized the bump on the head wasn't worth the kiss.
All Silas asked Santa for was his two front teeth, well he got what he asked for. 2 bottom teeth arrived 2 weeks ago.
 ~TraditionBuster

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Bah Humbug!

I was looking over my students' Christmas break reading: A Christmas Carol (so fitting), and before you say how mean I am to give them homework over the break, they are out an extra week of school: three weeks for my home-school kiddos.
Since I know Scrooge's story pretty well, I didn't think I needed to read word for word, but I came across these lines that hit me in a new way this year. When asked how much he would like to give to the poor, Scrooge responds,

 'Nothing' he replied. 
 'You wish to be anonymous?'
'I wish to be left alone,' said Scrooge. 'Since you ask me what I wish gentlemen, that is my answer. I don't make merry myself at Christmas, and I can't afford to make idle people merry. I help to support [the prisons and union workhouses] I have mentioned: they cost enough, and those who are badly off go there.'
'Many can't go there; and many world rather die.' 
'If they would rather die,' said Scrooge, 'they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.'

What really hit me was what the gentleman said prior to this dialogue:

'a few of us are endeavoring to raise a fund to buy the Poor some meat and drink, and means of warmth. We choose this time because it is a time, of all others, when Want is keenly felt, and Abundance rejoices.'

 Isn't that the truth? This time of year we all get so focused on our wish lists, and we decorate our homes with lights, surround our trees with gifts, and fill our bellies with yummy food. Abundance really rejoices, but those who don't have are keenly aware of what they are missing.

Instead of clenching our fists tight for ourselves, or in my case, wishing I had something to fill our stockings let alone a place to hang them, we should be reaching out to everyone around us. Those living in plenty and in want all need to hear the love of Christ. He came into the world to love us, and he died to save us. Spread that Christmas cheer with a love that knows no bounds.

God bless you.... everyone!

Silas, what do you think of Santa? Santa, what do you think of Silas?
They loved each other!


~Scrooge Busted :)

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Silas' first Thanksgiving

Silas "talked" more during our trip to St. Simons than he ever has. I think he liked the attention.
We finally got him to smile for the camera (grandpa that is).
Gramma loved reading with her grandson.
Well Gramma just loves her grandson. Silas was pretty happy to be with her too.
Matthew's aunts and mom fought over our little cub, and they made me look like a giant grizzly. Gotta love um!
We can't go to St. Simons without visiting Jennifer. We loved introducing her to Silas. Love you Jennifer!
Silas loves food more than anything (maybe even me); Thanksgiving will probably prove to be his favorite holiday. Can you see the drool?
Thank you for a great Thanksgiving Smiths! We are so thankful for you!
~ThankfulBuster

Thursday, November 28, 2013

DIY

I love my view from my desk. It's been the perfect fall season ending almost simultaneously with Thanksgiving- as it should. Now on to some DIY Christmas decorations.... no mantle so I have to figure out where to decorate... ideas?

Silas still isn't crawling, but I'm not complaining. He'll sit in front of a basket of toys forever... well sometimes he reaches too far for something and topples.

Instead of crawling, he'll roll and push off until he gets what he wants.

Mommy, I won't go anywhere unless you help me.

The best medicine for a tough day at work. Matthew and I love a little something sweet after dinner.

So impressed with my hubby's "DIY" maintenance. My car door handle broke, and I couldn't open it from the inside or outside. With little to no "car" maintenance experience, I was quite impressed that he took off the panel and fixed it! DIY always helps the wallet and the esteem. :)

I was confused by the fresh green buds on our barren winter tree. Apparently we have some mistletoe growing, and I never knew that it's actually a parasite slowly killing its host. Who thought to kiss under a parasite? Christmas here we come!
~Coffee CubBuster

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What do you do?

I'm often asked what I "do all day" as a new mommy. Well, that's a good question. I don't really know what happens to the hours of my day. Somewhere between diaper changing, baby-talking, coffee making, coffee drinking, toy and mush cleaning, and a little lesson planning or grading, the day just seems to pass by. While I know that my son is learning more in his day than I am, I have still acquired a plethora of new understandings myself:

Life lessons introduced by a 7-month old:
1. It's okay if you get nothing done in your day except caring for your family
2. Set small goals that you know you can accomplish for yourself: i.e. a load of laundry and a trip to the post office.
3. Set bigger goals that you can be flexible with their accomplishment date: i.e.  house projects, complete makeover, and saving the world.
4.  Create a schedule to maintain sanity: i.e. laundry Wednesdays, working/job stuff Tuesdays, and play-date Mondays. And don't worry if you have to adjust your schedule sometimes. That's life.
5. Babies may not be able to understand a cell-phone's capabilities, but they know when mommy or daddy is looking at the cell phone instead of them. Don't create a bad habit for them to emulate when they get their own phone.
6. Don't plan too much. Spontaneity is the froth and foam of life.
7. Don't compare your child's development with someone else. (This doesn't just apply to babies but every stage of development)
8. Make time to just sit alone, and keep dating your spouse. Your child knows loves to see mommy and daddy happy together.
9. All humans are prone to rebel against what is best for them. Even a 7 month-old will begin to test the waters of disobedience.
10. Get out and let your child see the world. You might even begin to remember what it was like to view this world through the eyes of a child. It's rejuvenating.

Silas giving Dee Dee a congrats hug on her new job. (Or maybe just a tired hug after a big lunch. Either way you want to read it.)

Silas has already decided that he doesn't want to eat baby food. This was his first act of independence. He fought and flung the pureed food and wouldn't eat unless he could pick it up with his own two mushy fingers.

Like father like son: chips a salsa lovers. Silas was drooling, although he always does that.

Our friend Bobby, the personal trainer, giving Silas a lesson in crawling. His son, Max, giving Silas a lesson in kissing/biting.


This is the "I'm tired, pout face."

Never thought I'd use this gift, but the Target carts are a little big for Si-man, so this was perfect. He loves getting to see everything in the store now.

Great date night with our new movie theater experience- Leather recliners and reserved seating! Matthew was in heaven. Don't think we can go to any other theater now that we have been spoiled.

Silas LOVED his first swings experience. It only lasted about ten minutes (like most activities), but it made both of our days brighter.

~Learning Buster