Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Most Wonderful TIme...

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year! It truly is the most wonderful time of year.  After some needed time off, I am beginning to feel reenergized as a wife & mama.  We have made many memories this Christmas break - singing Christmas carols at the nursing home, looking at Christmas lights & a live nativity scene with the RBC children, Christmas shopping, baking cookies, creating a gingerbread house, seeing friends....so many to even share.  As a mama, I have loved getting to see my boys in the morning, help get them dressed, eat breakfast together as a family, & spend lazy days together.   It will be hard to return to work, but I don't want to think about that yet...
Here are a few of my favorite snapshots of the Christmas break -
Making our family gingerbread house!
Christmas Eve Service is one of my favorite services all year!  The boys sat with me this year (& when your husband is in charge it was two against one)!  Thankfully, our family-friends sat with me.  It was a holy moment for me & another way to emphasize the TRUE meaning of Christmas to Peyton!
Christmas Eve Service at Royston Baptist 
Of course, I wanted Christmas pictures in front of the tree...do you see how successful I was at this adventure?
Trying to take a picture of a 3 & 1 year old....oh my!
Christmas morning was magical - seeing the excitement of the boys' faces as they opened their gifts & playing for hours on the den floor.  Each year becomes more & more fun with these boys!

Christmas morning! 
This year, we went to Destin, Florida to spend time with my in-laws.  It was wonderful - too much eating, too many presents, too many memories.  The best memory for me - NOLAN FINALLY WALKED!  It was a magical moment, & one request I've prayed for many months.   The pictures can say more than I can -
Cousins in pjs Nana made for them! 

Trying to take a picture with Aunt Amanda...not happening! 
I hope you & your family had a blessed Christmas season.  As I begin to pack up the Christmas, I will always hold these memories close to my heart.  May you have many Christmas memories that you can hold close to your heart.  
Merry Christmas from the Barlow Bunch! 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

A Blessed & Thankful November

Where are you, November?  The days seemed to FLY by... we celebrated Derby's birthday, my Dad's birthday, & Jonathan's birthday.  As you can see from the picture, we celebrated Jonathan's at home - grilled steaks & homemade milk chocolate pound cake.  Jonathan & I used our date night to pick out a mattress! :) Our Christmas & birthday gifts for this year are mattresses (man...we are getting old!).  It was a sweet celebration with my boys.
Jonathan's Birthday - the boys want cake! 
I was counting down the days for Thanksgiving break - the students & I both needed a break!  We had the BEST time in Kentucky.  I got to see my college roommates, who continue to be the BEST of friends.  I have been in Georgia for NINE years & they still call, email, text, & make time for me when I come to visit!  I am so blessed.  It was so much fun to see the kids - as our group continues to grow (& some couldn't make it due to sickness & bad weather).  Jonathan asked, "What did we talk about?"...with 5 children under the age of 5 there's not much quality conversation...ha!
Sarah, Ella, Codye, Campbell, Barrett, & my boys 
BUT - I LOVED every minute with the sweet girls!  I am convinced we will be forever friends.
Sarah, Codye, & Me 
On Thanksgiving day, Phil, Jonathan, Anna & baby, & I ran the Thoroughbred Classic at Keeneland race track in 21 degree weather (& a wind chill of 9)!  Nancy had a feast when we returned & also hosted our growing group for Thanksgiving dinner.  We had all of my favorites, ate too much, & exchanged Christmas gifts.  We made many memories.
Happy Thanksgiving! 
Look at these precious boys - Carter 2 1/2, Nolan 16 months, & Peyton 3 years
Carter, Nolan, & Peyton 
My sweet sisters & their unborn babies (Anna with a baby BOY & Nancy & unknown gender baby)!

Me (& NO baby), Anna & baby, Nancy & baby
We have much to be thankful for this year - a healthy-walking 3-year old, a cancer-free 16 month old, a teaching job for me, & a wonderful church who loves our family.  Don't you have much to be grateful for during this holiday season?  God is so good & I am reminded of that daily.  Happy belated Thanksgiving!