Decorating Grandma & Poppy’s tree

A Thanksgiving tradition at Grandma and Poppy’s has always been to put up the Christmas tree during the turkey holiday.  Grandma and Poppy had the tree all set up for us, so we got to enjoy decorating.  As Carter’s getting older, she’s able to decorate more than just the bottom three inches of the tree.  She still does, however, fixate on decorating only a branch or two!

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Icicle ornament for the tree.  Carter “loved” this one!

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Pretty Carter, pretty tree

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With tree bows in her hair, Carter looks a hot Christmas, crazy mess!  What a cheeser!

Being thankful

Happy Thanksgiving all!

With an unsteady year, I think it’s safe to say we’ve all got so much to be thankful for this year.  Andy, Carter and I were lucky enough to spend Thanksgiving with our loving families.  Our awesome parents have always supported us (even when we made stupid mistakes!) and have been our loudest cheering section.  They’re times two when it comes to Carter Kay.  Our uncles and aunts and extended family are happy and healthy, which is more than anyone could ask for. 

We’ve got a strong and silly “extended family” made of the best friends ever.  They’re our family in Des Moines, and also scattered across Iowa and soon to be beyond!  They may not be family by blood or marriage, but they’re just as close and they keep us out of trouble, sometimes in trouble, and always happy. 

We have a house to call home and we’re warm with full tummies.  We both have jobs that make us happy (“find something you love to do and you’ll never work a day in your life.”) and keep us paying the bills.  With a year full of financial crunches, we’re still able to go have fun … occasionally!

At the top of my list of things to be thankful for is Carter.  Our rambunctious three year old has been changing from a wild toddler into a caring, loving, smart little girl.  She’s the most curious kid ever, which just makes her smarter by the minute.  There isn’t much in life she’s not interested in or isn’t willing to try, and she always does so with the most beautiful smile on her face.  She’s our sunshine!

And, just when you think it can’t get much better and you’re thankful meter must be at its height, life gives you even more.  As you found out with Hangman, we’re pregnant!  Carter is going to be a big sister, and she’s so excited!  She wasn’t supposed to tell, we wanted the website to spread our news, but she spilled the beans at daycare (“I have grapes!  And my Mommy has a baby in her belly!”) and tried to tell Andy and Rory at dinner last week (“See Mommy, I’m not talking about the baby!”).  If we’re even half as lucky the second time around, we’ll be beyond blessed!  We’re about 6 weeks along right now, with a due date of July 22, 2009.  So far, I’m feeling fine.  Just a little tired, but nothing an 8:30 bedtime doesn’t take care of!  We’re looking through the baby name book for ideas, which has been a battle!  Our second appointment is scheduled for January 5th at 1:00, and we’ll get to hear a heartbeat.  Until then, we’ll continue to discuss name choices and paint colors, and Carter will talk to her sibling via my belly button, and life will be sweet and perfect!

We hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with the ones you love (chances are, they’re probably the people we love, too!).  Take a second to be thankful for all that we have, and maybe think about giving back to those who aren’t as lucky as we are.  Even when it’s hectic and wild, life has been very good to us!  Happy Thanksgiving and  enjoy the holiday season!