December 30, 2007

Ice Cream

We tried out hand at making home made ice cream...

I was surprised how little sugar was in it. This is the beginning of the custard base (egg yolks and sugar)

Sam scalding the milk. I put the cream in too early but oh well.

Sam cranking away. Instead of ice we used snow since we are in abundance of the white fluffy stuff. When Sam said his arms were getting tired I reminded him of the Big Sycamore.... (Where the Red Fern Grows) suddenly he had the go to keep on cranking! He did have some helpers but mostly the helpers were there for the eating not the cranking!

The Chocolate Ice Cream was a bit softer than soft but it was very yummy.

All I Want for Christmas...

are my two front teeth.... (and several other besides!)
I have never seen a child with so many front teeth out all at once!! Fortunately for Rosie she lost the bottom 2 very early so they are nearly completely in or she'd have no teeth in the front at all!

Christmas Part II

Over the river and through the woods to grandmother's house we go.... (though there was no river)
Christmas evening was spent with Aragorn's family. We all had a lovely time and as usual the delicious 85 course meal was absolutely delicious.

The tables were set up beautifully. Betcha can't guess if they are paper or China plates....

Eowyn holding her nearly 6m old cousin.

All the cousins. 16 children ages 11-1/2 and under!

An impromptu Nativity was performed.

Bilbo was a rather disgruntled Baby Jesus.

The flock of angels



Grandma has a lovely Baby Jesus!

Rosie with Baby Jesus

As I mentioned in Part I, my mother bought us the Kings Tents for our Nativity set as our Christmas gift. They are really beautiful.
Speaking of gifts, how does one manage gifts in a large family.... With 9 children, the total number of gifts is rather abundant when all is said and done. So we started, several years ago, celebrating the 12 Days of Christmas from Christmas to Epiphany. We spread out the gifts we receive through these 12 days. Christmas is for Grandparents and Stocking Stuffers. Some days are gifts from various extended family, some days are crafts, baking or a new movie. We give the children their "big" gift on Epiphany (a snitchable idea from my friend Karen in ME).

December 29, 2007

Christmas Part I

Merry Christmas!

I had asked a good friend if she'd make dresses for my girls for Christmas. I just told her to surprise me. She is an absolutely impeccable seamstress. The children could wear the dresses inside out and still look nice. All lovely rolled seams (or whatever they are called). We decided on some vests for the boys as well.

Sam and Bilbo








Nativity Scene at the Church. It is huge and very beautiful.

Sam made Aragorn a windmill blade.

Grandma added to our Nativity set with the 3 Kings Tents!

When Daddy goes shopping (on the internet) one just never knows. We opted not to put it on their floor in the night for fear they might think it was the dog!

The big girls helped me in our store this year so they picked out a new outfit for their 18" dolls. Hopefully they never outgrow dolls... I never did!

Christmas with a newborn means paper plates and a less elegant fare but it was yummy just the same! Aragorn brought some some delicious honey glazed hams, we made a potato dish, some very odd jello cubes with cream, grandma's braided bread and Sara Lee provided a chocolate pie and a mint pie.

The Legend of the Christmas Rose
We pulled together our own little Christmas play.

Eowyn was a Shepherd and of course the narrator.

Galadriel was Our Lady and Rosie was Angel Gabriel

Sam was St. Joseph and Bilbo of course was Baby Jesus

He was all of a week-ish old.

Frodo, Merry and Pippin were the 3 Kings, though Pippin was more like a stooge. Our scenery was a bit scant having forgotten to buy some pain to cover the writing on the boxes! But no one minded. As a side note the boxes delivered a darling little stove for our room and I'd highly recommend it!

Eleanor was Madalon from the Legend of the Christmas Rose

The full cast.
After this to relax a bit we watched the movie "The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey" It was so cute.... grab a tissue, you'll laugh and cry in this one! I'm not a movie person but I really enjoyed it!
Part II will come along soon enough....

New Christmas Niece

Two of my nieces welcome their new baby sister. Aren't all three just as beautiful as can be?

Boys are Cute

when they are sleeping.

(Christmas pictures coming soon....)

December 23, 2007

Bilbo's Baptism

The night before Bilbo's Baptism we had quite a storm. Very heavy winds along with rain, sleet and snow all mixed in together. So the drive to the church in the morning was quite the feat. The big 15 passenger van does not have 4wd but it managed its way through a 3 foot drift!

This is the boy suit I had made (very unprofessionally I might add). The cuffs and bowtie were made from scraps from my wedding gown. (The girl Baptism gown has the same plus a panel from my wedding veil)... sentimental me!

The Baptism was the Traditional Rite. (Here is an example)
Bilbo was quiet until after the exorcisms when he proceeded to wail the rest of the time until he was fed. Poor boy was without food for almost a whole hour... this is a long time for a belly that wants food every 8-1/2 minutes!

God Parents.

Some of Aragorn's family were able to join us for lunch at our home. My big helpful girls made most of the food alongside me. We served a menu picked out by the children, just a simple fare of chicken salad, summer sausage, cheese, rye bread dip, cold veggie pizza, and chips... and Sam popped popcorn! MIL & SIL made the lovely and delicious cake! I love the dove!

December 19, 2007

Welcome Baby Bilbo

We joyfully welcome wee Bilbo to our clan.
8 lbs 13 oz
There was some issue as to his name. I thought Bongo but the children preferred Bilbo... so Bilbo he is!
I've caught him sucking on 1 finger, 2 fingers and a finger/thumb combo.

He was pretty alert early on... but I suppose that will happen when a baby screams for quite some time after entering the cold world!

Grandpa visits.

This is our Christmas Card picture.

Bilbo all gussied up for the picture in his new outfit from Aragorn's family. (Thank you!!)