Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015, You Were Good.

It absolutely blows my mind that 2015 has come to a close.  It seems like just yesterday I was writing this post, reflecting on 2014.  I remember how much I enjoyed doing that, as it forced me to remember a lot of what we experienced throughout the entire year.

Today, however, I wanted to do things a bit differently.  As I bid 2015 adieu, I decided to force myself to choose one picture to represent each month.  And man was this tough!  There was so much good I wanted to include, but I worked hard to sort through the pictures to find one that truly showed what life was like for us, what we were focusing on, what was going on in our little world at that moment in time.  So here is what 2015 looked like for the Peeles:

Two months into the whole family-of-four thing, and these two were absolutely smitten.  We had worked so hard to bring that little boy into the world for so many reasons -- the way these two are looking at each other?  Top of the list.

Our first ever trip to Disney World, a trip during which we were 100% focused on this little girl right here.  Pure magic.

This picture represents so much to me... my whole world is right there in that rocking chair.  And that man?  That hard-working, tickle-monster-ing, bath-giving, boo-boo-kissing man?  I hit the jackpot with him.  And I fell even more in love with him throughout 2015.

By April, we were finally members of our local church, making the decision to be active and responsible and caring members.  Our church brings us so much joy and it is an absolute honor to be a part of their family.

Cameron Kate's first experience in an organized sport may have included more field-twirling and grass-picking than ball-playing, but we sure had a blast going to all of her t-ball games and cheering her on from the stands!

The month we welcomed a new member of the family:  the helmet.

A trip to the beach, Everette's first - a week at my favorite place on earth, a week that was absolute perfection.

We squeezed out every last bit of summer, spending as many afternoons as possible at our local pool.

One of my favorite places to be is anywhere with this guy, just the two of us.  Throw in a little college football?  Icing on the cake.  The Peeles <3 football season!

The month of all things CK, as we celebrate the girl who made us parents.  This year?  Four.  FOUR. I absolutely cannot believe it.

And boy was it hard to believe this little stinker had been in our lives for an entire year.  Our baby, our Rocky, our miracle, our buddy-roo.  He has brought so much joy to all three of us, and I am eternally grateful that God chose us for him.

And this picture?  Oh this picture.  Such a special time of year, with my people, in our pajamas, no makeup or showers or frills.  Just us.  
Wrapped up in their arms, no place I'd rather be.

Next year sure has a lot to live up to, and I am so excited to keep living this brutally beautiful life - the good, the bad, the fun, the hard, the exciting, the scary - surrounded by the most amazing family and friends.
Thank you, 2015... for the love, the laughter, the tears, and the memories.  The times that brought us great joy, the times that challenged our faith, the times that made us stronger.  Man, you were good to us.
Really, really good.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Merry & Magical

As our Christmas card said, it really is the most wonderful time of the year.  Being a mama during Christmastime is the absolute best.  And the older CK gets, the more magical it all feels.  Life through a child's eyes is pretty awesome.  And Christmas from the point-of-view of your son/daughter? No words.

And because I never want to forget, here's a recap of how we celebrated Christmas around these parts, with a whole lotta pictures and a few words, too...

 I'm a big fan of traditions.  Like most families, we always make cookies for Santa.  This year, however, I found a cookie press much like the one my mama always used, and recreated cookies for Santa with her old, Canadian recipe.  So fun and equally delicious!

This little nugget has been under the weather, but between lots of crying, coughs, and fevers, we got some smiles out of him!

All dressed up for Christmas Eve church service!

Disclaimer:  I took the following pictures before the service started, I promise!  
CK was so excited that they got to sit in "big church." But I'm not gonna lie... having both of them with us throughout the service was WORK.  By the Benediction, our pew was covered in snack wrappers, crumbs, crumpled bulletins, a baby shoe, and a hairbow.

After church, we picked up dinner and headed home for pajamas, pizza, kids in bed, wine for mama, and the first of many viewings of National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.  But first, reindeer food sprinkled on the lawn and milk and cookies (and carrots!) on the fireplace for Santa.

 Santa came!
 And ate his cookies!

Obligatory top-of-the-stairs picture:


 And the last surprise... a bounce house from Meme!

And one of the best gifts I've ever gotten?  Surprise canvases painted by my people... The first, from my daughter who taught me what it means to love to the moon and back.  The second, from my son, who truly is a miracle.

My whole world, right here.  The three people who make everyday feel like Christmas.
I hope yours was equally merry and magical! <3