Sunday, November 27, 2016

Benson Richard at 2 Years Old

Has it really been 2 years since our Benson Richard was born?

Benson is so smart,
loves to dance,
loves to sing,
obsessed with The Nightmare before Christmas and Toy Story,
loves "treats",
hates hates hates the car wash,
and is so noisy!

 It's funny how he is such a boy.
He makes boy noises,
he likes to wrestle and do manly things,
he is so different from his sister.

He laughs every time someone gets hurt.
That's how we got these pictures...
by pretending to physical abuse ourselves.
Weird little man.

Benson is talking a ton!
He loves his blue blankie,
and seriously gives the best hugs!
After he has done something wrong,
he is quick to say sorry and accompany his words with a hug.
He has such a sweet and tender spirit.

I love this video of Aniston meeting her brother for the first time.
So glad I have this memory!


DAY 1714... Benson Turns 2!!!

Benson has been a little obsessed with The Nightmare Before Christmas for quite sometime now.
While considering birthday party ideas,
I knew fairly quickly that a Jack party was a must.

Luckily I was able to buy a lot of Halloween items on clearance after Halloween,
and then I just got crafty.
Pinterest had a lot of great ideas,
but it also helped that Benson insists on watching the movie twice a day,
so I was able to get a good idea for decor and food.

Yes we all wore matching Jack shirts,
except for Ani who wore her Sally dress.

Making Jack's equation was probably one of my favorite pieces for the party.

I made the invites on Word and just printed them out.
Super simple!

I actually LOVED having the tree decorated all spooky! 
I wanted to leave it like this for Christmas,
but then I decided that it probably wasn't the best theme to celebrate the birth of our Lord...

I fell in love with these Jack Skellington ornaments,
but they cost like $75.
So I bought some bulbs for $6 and made my own.
I did leave these on the Christmas tree...

I LOVED having this wreath to greet everyone!
I simply took my Christmas wreath and added a bow and teeth and eye balls.
They came off easily and perfectly.

I must have cut out like 20 spider snowflakes.

Have you guys ever read this book?
It's the original poem that Tim Burton wrote that inspired the movie.
So great!

Definitely the most simple cake Spencer and I have ever made for a birthday.

We had coloring sheets to keep the kids busy.

We just had broccoli soup for lunch.
They eat green soup in the movie,
and since it's one of Benson's favorite meals,
we figured it worked.

Don't judge my Jack cookies.
As you can tell,
I realized they weren't working and stopped after making 3 of them.
Oh well.
The Christmas trees with Halloween sprinkles turned out great!

We are so lucky that Benson's birthday falls close to Thanksgiving because our whole family can be here for his party.
These cousins LOVE each other!
Of course we have a picnic style lunch so that we could watch The Nightmare Before Christmas while we ate.


He loves his Jack!

Benson's favorite part of the party was definitely the cake!
He loved having everyone sing to him,
and he loved the fire!

Benson has become much more skilled at opening presents...

The Buzz doll was a HUGE hit!

We are so in love with our little Benson and feel so blessed that he chose our family!
Happy birthday Beni Boo!

Sunday, November 20, 2016

DIY... Advent Calendar

Growing up,
my Mom had this felt advent calendar that we used every year.
I have no idea where it came from,
maybe she made it,
I should probably ask....
But we loved waking up every morning and moving Mary and Joseph one step closer to Bethlehem. 
But somewhere,
it was lost.
And because I can't find a picture of the nativity,
here is a Scary Santa photo from when I was almost 3...

For the past couple of years I have really wanted to replace it,
and make on for my own children.
But I was honestly scared to death!
I don't love working with felt,
and I honestly had no idea where to begin.

So I found this picture on Pinterest,

and I LOVED everything about it.
The color scheme,
the way the figures looked,
it is just awesome.
(You can see her post about her nativity here).

But it wasn't exactly what I was looking for.
I still wanted the kids to move Mary and Joseph up the numbers every day until Christmas Day when Christ is born.

So this is what I came up with.


Let's be honest about one thing though...
The numbers were the BIGGEST pain in the world to cut out!

I had to cut them out during Aniston's dance class (okay maybe spread out across 3 classes) because I needed to be in public in order not to be too hard on myself.
The animals also gave me extreme anxiety and I saved them until the very end to cut out.

I had no patterns so I free handed everything,
I based most of the figures on the Pinterest find,
but I am not an artist,
so I was convinced that everything would turn out looking like blobs.
But they didn't!

Growing up we always left baby Jesus in the star until Christmas morning.
So I am choosing to do the same.

But I am so so so happy with how it turned out.
I used fabric glue to hold everything together,
and my plan is to sew it when I have time,
but I don't have time.
It is so far from perfect...
So don't look too closely,
but I'm totally okay with that.

I just know that this will be in our family for a very long time,
and I hope it becomes one of our favorite traditions like it was for me growing up!

the best part....
There's still time for you to make one!!!!
Just go do it!