Friday, December 21, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Friends & Family!

Time has gotten away from me (as always it seems), and this little update will have to suffice as this year's Christmas card.
I feel a little guilty as I type in the same room as all the lovely Christmas Cards I have received thus far ~ I love them all, and they make me happy every time I look at them:)  Hopefully next year I'll be better!

Ansley- She has grown to be quite the little chatterbox and has become accustomed to talking more since Avery began Pre-k in August.  In fact, if she is not talking as much as she'd like (due to big sis) She will say, "Mom, Mom, tell Avey my turn talk!!!" & as of late she has resorted to nudging her sister and saying, "cut out Avey, I talk now!"  She loves to do handstands on the walls with big sis, read Eric Carle books, and color.  I love listening to her count to 18 and how from 18 she cycles back to 9, 10, 11... (I'll correct her eventually) Also her version of the end of the alphabet cracks me up every time.  She concludes, "t, u, v, double x, a-ans-lee."  It makes me sad that she is not my little baby anymore although she does still request that I "rocka" her before bed every night!

Avery- Avery & Ansley spent lots of time in the spring with Mommy attending playgroups and doing lots of fun activities around Little Rock.  In the summer we could often be found at the pool and Avery participated in our neighborhood pool's swim team.  She was the youngest swimmer who swam without floaties.  After breaking her leg in April this was the perfect rehab!!!  In August she started Pre-K and has thrived in school.  Joey and I just knew we'd get calls frequently from her teachers because of talking too much, bossiness, & stubbornness.  At our first conference we were told just the opposite.  Her teacher even told me, "What I could do with a class full of Avery's!!!" & "She always listens and does what she's told & is nice to all the kids."  In fact they did an activity on sharing where the kids had to fill in these blanks, I can share_____ with ______.  She told me 90% of the kids put Avery in the blank of who to share with!!!!  I got teary eyed.  I don't mean to brag, its just been a total transformation.  If you knew how often her Sunbeam teachers at church had to come get me, you'd know what this meant!!!!  She is becoming quite the little lady & it makes me so happy:)  Plus, we love Fair Park and the awesome teachers there!!!!

Mommy- In March, I got to have a girls weekend with friends.  We drove up to Fayetteville, AR and I ran my 3rd half marathon!  It was the worst (as in toughest) course ever and we all concurred that we wouldn't do that course again!  Joey has been super busy with school this year and so while he was at a research conference (in Denver, CO) I took the girls to my parents and met up with a bunch of my high school girl friends and their kids. We had a fun afternoon together catching up.  In June, the girls and I flew to DC and visited my sister in Lancaster, PA.  She treated us to many fun activities including Dutch Wonderland, DC Cupcakes, and the Lancaster Farmers Market.  We had a great time!  Then in August, while Joey was at another research conference (this time in Park City, UT) we drove out to Georgia to visit his parents, and all the aunts and uncles.  We also went back to TX for a weekend to send off my little brother on his 2 year church mission to Toronto, Canada.  I can not believe he is old enough to be on a mission!  We took a last minute trip to GA  for Thanksgiving and had a nice time including our traditional black Friday all nighter!

Daddy- Daddy has been busy, busy, busy!  He has attended 4 research conferences this year in Denver, CO, Park City, UT, San Jose, CA, and Starkville, MS.  He completed and passed his Qualifier in August (whew!) and is on his way to graduation! (well still a couple years away)  The biggest news we've recently received is that he will have his first, 1st author publication that will be published in the scientific journal Cellular Microbiology in print in April and online in Jan!!!!!! Amidst all this he was called as the Stake Young Men's President and had a lot of fun organizing and participating in Youth Conference this summer & they have plans for a Nauvoo YC next year!

2012 has been a good year & we hope it has for you all as well! In Feb. 2013 we are excited to be welcoming a baby BOY into the Graham House!!!!  We CAN'T WAIT!!!!

Love you all and Hope you have a Merry Christmas & Happy New Year