Thank you all for sharing in the lives of our three amazing children- Mairead, Jack, and Ben. We hope you visit often!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

More Christmas Eve

After the visit from Santa and the big engagement announcement at our house, we headed over to Danny and Katie's for the annual Christmas Eve party. Mairead had a lot of fun with the 'big kids' and they did a great job entertaining her. We all had a great night having fun, congratulating Brian and Christin, and sharing in the season.

And, what do you know? Santa came for another visit!
How cute are these pjs with little reindeer feet? All three kids had them and they were adorable. Comfy, too!
Jen did get to visit with Santa, even though she and Mike had more important missions that night. They were MIA for a while, delivering some 'Christmas cheer' to neighbors with some of our cousins.

Liz helped Jack to look festive for the occasion.

Mairead was dressed in a gorgeous little red coat that Jean let us borrow. It belonged to her girls when they were little.

The boys had a great time exploring a new place and playing with some new toys.

Once Brian and Christin arrived to share their news, they attracted quite a crowd. Everyone congratulated them and admired the beautiful ring.

My mom visited with Santa, but she really could not ask for anything more. With a brand new granddaughter, and then a new daughter in law to-be, her Christmas wishes were fulfilled.

Mairead and Grampy had fun looking at all of the Christmas decorations.

All of this happiness, and we haven't even talked about Christmas Day yet! We are so thankful for all of the people who shared this holiday with us.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas 2009- Part 1

We have so many great memories from this past Christmas, it is hard to even begin to share all of the special moments that we had! How lucky are we that we have so much happiness to share? Just five days before Christmas, we welcomed Lily into the world- and as if that were not enough of an amazing Christmas memory, it was Jack and Ben's first Christmas, too. AND, we celebrated Brian and Christin's engagement!

This family just keeps growing, and every addition make things more fun and special. Christin is an amazing woman and we all just adore her. She is the perfect addition to the family and we will be so happy to have her with us for so many happy moments in the future. I am so happy and proud to be adding a sister, and she is already a great aunt to our kids. Brian is a special and wonderful person, and we are just thrilled that they found each other.

For those of you who do not know, Christin's older brother, Josh, is one of my best friends... we have known each other for over 20 years- how scary is that? And now his terrific family is connected to ours! Josh and his wife, Becky, have a daughter who is just 4 months younger than Mairead, and now they will be cousins!

This is Christin's ring-- how beautiful! The center stone belonged to my dad's mom, and Brian brought it to the jeweler with some ideas for how to add to it and personalize it for Christin. They did an amazing job. Don't worry, Lynch- he DID take it to Nick! You should be getting some kind of commission or something...

Brian proposed on Christmas Eve at home with Christin, and then they came to the house to share the news.

We thought it was fitting to take pictures in front of the stove because Brian and Christin finally have one!
Even though Mairead had no idea what was happening, she got caught up in the excitement yelling, "Yay, Brian! Yay, Brian!" She also got excited about the chocolate pretzel Jen gave her...

Mike share his excitement in his own way.

I was totally surprised by the news- can you tell???

The happy couple. Don't mind the baby- my kids love Christin so she is usually holding one.

In all the excitement, Mairead found some quiet time with Grampy to play under the tree.

Even before Brian and Christin made their big announcement, we had our own special moments when Santa came to visit! It was too bad that my uncle, Lee, had to miss Santa... seems like Lee is never around when Santa stops by...

The boys are on the wrong sides and are wearing identical outfits- so it's hard to tell who is who!
This is most definitely Jack- he is giving Santa one of his patented looks.

Santa brought Mairead her first 'prize' of the holiday- an ice cream cone playset that one of Santa's elves had sent us. She loves it-- thanks, Aunt Kathy and Uncle Frank!

These are just the first of some fun times from the holiday-- it is going to take me a few posts to share them all! Stay tuned!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Updates in Brief

I know, I know... Christmas was two days ago and I have not posted any pictures. I apologize, but things have been pretty crazy around here! Here are a few hi-lights of the past week...

We welcomed a new niece, Lily Elaine, to the family on Sunday.

On Thursday, we found out that I am going to get a new sister (in law) very soon!!! Congratulations to my brother, Brian, and his fiancee, Christin!

On Friday, Mairead had her best Christmas yet, and the boys enjoyed their very first Christmas. It was amazing for them and for us.

The only sad note is that our computer is d-e-d-dead. I am using my dad's laptop for now, and I am hesitant to use his entire memory by uploading all of my Christmas pictures... so we are working on a solution for that.

I will find a way to post pictures soon- hope that all of you had as wonderful a Christmas as we did!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Our new niece

Just a few more pictures of Lily- she is super alert and doing great! She has been nursing well, but she is a big girl who needs some extra calories, so today she had her first bottle. She loved it!

My Nana made the trip to the hospital to meet her newest great-granddaughter.

She is so sweet-Mom and baby are doing well and we are excited for them to come home soon!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Welcome to the world, Lily Elaine Crowder!

We are so happy to welcome our newest family member into the world- just in time for her first Christmas! Congratulations to my sister, Katie, and her husband, Steve, on the birth of their little girl, Lily Elaine Crowder! Lily came into the world via c-section at 2:20 pm on Sunday, December 20. She is 8lbs 13 oz and 21 inches long. She is a big, beautiful, healthy girl!

She is already like her mom- she didn't want to come out in the cold and snow when she was perfectly warm and happy where she was sleeping. But at 41 1/2 weeks, it was time to get out! Mom and baby are doing great and we are all so excited for them.

Thanks to all of you who sent positive thoughts and prayers for this little girl and her parents. We are so happy she is here- and I am so happy to be an aunt for the first time!

A Grampy for the fourth time!

She is super cute and very alert- she had her eyes open a lot and was just taking everything in.

Mom and baby. Katie looks fabulous- seriously- I am so jealous!

A proud Nana

The new dad and his dad

Welcome, Lily! We have waited for you for so long, and you are worth it!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Last night, Dave and I took Mairead to the Stone Zoo for Zoolights- something the zoo does every year from Thanksgiving to Christmas. We had never been before, so this was a new experience for all of us. Basically, while the animals are all somewhere warm, the zoo is decorated with all kinds of lights and holiday displays. Kids can even visit with Santa. We did not do that since you had to stand in a long line in an enclosed space, and Mairead would have been on the naughty list if we tried that.

I didn't get a ton of pictures because she was always running off somewhere with poor Dave chasing her, but we had fun getting outside to enjoy the lights and some fresh air. It was a very Christmasy thing to do!

Her favorite- a giant clock.

Scariest Santa ever. He was up in a clock tower looking structure... he was creepy.

The other day, Mairead spent some quality time with Nana decorating the tree. She inspected every single ornament before it went up.

So far, we are really enjoying our Christmas season. We are still waiting for our most precious gift- baby girl Crowder! We hope that she comes soon since she was due 4 days ago. She will be worth the wait, though!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Super Talented

Our kids are always entertaining us with their talents. Recently, Mairead was showing off her superhero look by wearing the Christmas tree skirt as a cape. She was also wearing her super shiny pink boots (that don't even really fit her, but like most women, she doesn't care because they look good).

Then she was tired from being so super and had to curl up on the floor in her cape/tree skirt.

Jack and Ben have been showing off their ability to pull up on things, as well as their impressive musical talents.

They are always an adventure!