Happy Colors!

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This last is gift from my sweet sister-in-law,  Amber. She and Jared even hung it up for me when I was gone one day.  It is the perfect thing for my kitchen, and we all really love it!

Last night Sophie was gazing contemplatively up at it and said “All of our aunts and uncles are such amazing artists!” So true, Sophie Lou.

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Joy Dare :: 3 Gifts Berry Red

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I really don’t have much red around the house, but at Christmas time, there are always little pops of cheerful red to be found when you look hard enough!

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This is still one of my favorite pops of red around Christmas time. I have blogged about it before…

A gift from a dear friend [the same friend that sent me this!]. I think it was given to us on our first Christmas together, but it may have been our second. They’re all starting to blend now…

When I was due with Sophie around Christmas time two years ago, we kept her name to ourselves. We were actually going to name her Lucy Sophia, and had experienced a few negative reactions to the name Lucy, so we decided not to share the name until there was a tiny girl to go with it. My little sister, Hannah saw this ornament hanging on the tree, and was certain that she had learned the name of our baby girl!

As it turned out, Sophie’s name got changed while I was in labor to Sophie Lucia Marie, so all that secrecy was for naught.

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The Christmas tree skirt has been in my family since my first Christmas, and maybe even longer. I used to kind of wish I could have some fancy Anthropology tree skirt, but I am really glad that this is the one we still have and use. It’s really quite cozy!

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Another gift from a very good childhood friend who also moved way too far away. Geeze, what is it with these people?!

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My thrifted ice bucket sports a cheerful red!

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A lovely ornament, made by Hannah, and particularly loved and adored by Sophie, who simply can’t resist bling in any form.

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Our handy dandy red rubber scraper.

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My red hymnal, as mentioned by Mom.

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Really, once the kids and I got started looking for red things that we were thankful for, it was hard to stop!

Joy Dare :: 3 Gifts Bright

I said I’d try to participate in the Joy Dare, but I never claimed that I would be on time, right?

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Each morning I have been asking the kids to think about whatever the Joy Dare is, and share any ideas that they get. Yesterday Sophie thought about it for a few seconds, and then slammed her purse up and onto the table with a huge grin, sending crayons flying hither and yon. Her glittery purple purse was a birthday present from her Aunt Anna, Uncle Matt and all her girl cousins who understand so well what a girly-girl needs the most.

Later in the day, Kinsley came to me and said “You know how Sophie thinks we should be grateful for that purse? Well, I just don’t know if that’s really the kind of thing to be thankful for, since it’s only a purse…” Oh child, that is exactly the kind of thing to be thankful for!

It made me thrilled that we are doing this together as a family, and especially that we began this journey in the month of December. How wonderful it is to recognize and name our blessings!

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Okay, I cheated. Two Brights for the price of one. We luf Gillian’s little bright pink squeaker shoes. They are so fun, and bright, and cheery and squeaky, and I always know where the Baby Girl is when she has ’em on. And she loves to wear them, which is somewhat new and exotic for Gilli. And the lights! There are so many bright Christmas lights everywhere that I couldn’t resist sneaking one picture in. Also another view of the cuteness that is Gillian, who happens to be a pretty bright little person herself. Okay, so it was three Brights for the price of one. Who’s counting anyway?

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Isn’t that a beautiful bright blue aquarium? We love fish, and aquariums – they are just so peaceful. At Bass Pro Shop, we sat and watched the fish tank for the longest time, and found it so restful and soothing!

Sophie’s flower

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Grandma and Grandpa Jacobson sent this amaryllis to Sophie Lou for her birthday when it was just a little baby bulb. Yesterday it was nothing but a bud. This morning it was breathtaking. It has grown by the hour today, and is even more full and amazing than when we took these photos this afternoon.

Stay tuned for more important updates on the most gorgeous amaryllis ever.