Monday, October 19, 2015


I have not blogged in forever, it seems! And the last post I did was rather dramatic haha but all is still well over at the Maclean house. We having been moving along slowly but surely. I put Scarlette in ballet class (photos to come!) and she absolutely loves it. I was a little nervous for her because I still have been going to nursery with her but she stayed during the first class and hasn't looked back. 

Andrew is heading into his 2nd year of automotive tech school. It's technically only a few months but come December he will be officially a 3rd year mechanic. Can I get a woo-hoo?? This has been a long time coming for us. From trying to get on with the police, to wondering if we should do Vivint for a few more years..this all just kind of fell into our laps. It seems kind of silly to say that though, seeing as my Dad owns a mechanic shop but ...I just really didn't know that Andrew would have such a passion for it. Pretty exciting stuff for him! During his last semester of school he was top of his class and ended up receiving 3 different scholarships, which was really, really nice. Trades people have it made! They get paid for 10 months of the year, go to school for 2, get EI while they are at school and basically if you fill out the right forms, the Alberta government pays for you to go to school. Lucky for Andrew, he has an awesome wife that fills out all the forms for him. 

Lexi is an absolute dolly. I am seriously so smitten with her. I love both my girls equally but I just have such a strong connection with Lex. She is so peaceful and cuddly. Scarlette is such a spit fire...but that comes with A LOT of hilarious moments. She keeps us on our toes. Lexi started walking a few months ago, which I was ecstatic about. That took FOREVER! She is a great eater and a great sleeper. I'm not use to this kind of baby. She will go to bed at 8:30pm and wake up at 9:30am. No fuss at all. I can just hear her on the baby monitor chatting with herself in the morning. Scarlette on the other hand.....oi! She seriously NEVER sleeps. At least it feels that way. I definitely feel overwhelmed at times with her. She will not sleep unless Andrew and I are that means it is pretty hard to stay up late and edit photos when I have a little buddy that basically runs my show and won't go to sleep unless I do. 

I am currently swamped with photos, but definitely enjoying the busy season. I have SO MUCH MORE TO LEARN about photography, it is so nice that people are so willing to have such an amateur take their photos. I'm excited with what the future will bring. --SEGWAY--I was on pinterest today scrolling some photography ideas when an article popped up that was "recommended for me". It was titled "9 things people with clean houses do everyday" of course I clicked on it. Tell me more of these magical things that will keep my house clean. One of the suggestions that popped up was " clean while you go, for example, load the dishwasher as the chicken is cooking"....I just LAUGHED out LOUD. Seriously?? was this article made for people who have children? Do you know what I'm doing while making dinner? First, my children are hangry so they are wanting "PRE-Dinner", which is basically me dumping fruit snacks out onto the TV stand and telling them to fend for themselves. I also probably haven't had the chance to even empty the dishwasher yet, which coincidentally was second on their list " Empty dishwasher first thing in the morning". So I'm already behind for the day, according to the list. I've tried the whole "empty the dishwasher" while the toddler is walking around, you know what happens if I turn my back for like 0.00001 second? My toddler is all of a sudden trotting around with a knife in her hand. So if there is still clean dishes in the dishwasher, loading it with dirty ones is just out of the question. I scan the list again for another thing that could be an option for me. "Make your bed before you leave in the morning"...seriously? I make everyone's bed before I leave in the morning....a nicely made bed is just an invitation for my children to climb up and jump like crazo's till there isn't any evidence left of a made bed. It probably doesn't help that I fed them fruit snacks for breakfast (as well as "PRE-dinner") either, so they are hopped up on sugar. At this point I am just laughing at all the other options on the list, I guess I will accept the mess and move on. No one is invited over unless I know you are coming! Got it!? hahah. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

*Spoiler Alert* Thoughts on Derek Shepherd and this weeks episode of Grey's Anatomy.

OK, seriously, I never get attached to anything that I don't consider "real" but Grey's had me bawling tonight!!! I actually thought something was wrong with me until I took to twitter and saw that all of the rest of the Grey's Anatomy fans out there were feeling similar to how I was feeling. Grey's Anatomy has been my go-to comfort show. I admit that I didn't start watching until season 5 but I have been absolutely hooked ever since. I think I watched the first four seasons in a matter of days the first time around. It is such a brilliant show! I loved how Shonda Rhimes always seemed to relate the patients situations to what was going on in the lives of the doctors. A lot of the episodes tugged on my heart strings but I think a big reason why I loved the show so much was because of the relationship between Meredith and Derek. I absolutely love the commitment level they have with one another. So many times they could have called it quits and didn't, so many tragedies that they both faced together and they always found a silver lining because of their love and commitment. I know the world isn't always sunshine and roses, people break up, people pass away but the amount of fans who had their hearts invested in this show, just lost someone who they have grown to love and care about (as crazy as that sounds, it's just a show, I realize that). I often found myself relating to trials that the doctors were going through, every time we saw an aortic dissection I thought of my Grandpa who passed away because of that cause. Every Mother who grieved for the loss of their child, I was right there grieving along with them. 

Grey's has definitely evolved since the first five seasons, which are admittedly my favourites. I have dealt with losing countless characters that I loved! I was so sad to see Izzy and George depart--that episode was one of the most moving episodes to date (Hello elevator scene..cue tears). Lexi AND Mark dying because of a plane crash, like come on! Even after Christina left I told myself that the show was practically over, how could they go on without her!?! BUT there is always Meredith and Derek!!! I love everything about their story!!!!!! I knew this current season without Christina wouldn't be the same, even after the countless other characters that have left, I could tell the end was near. I was even mentally preparing myself to say good-bye to the show. Asking myself questions like, "how is it going to feel when your most beloved show is done?", "what will you do with all of your spare time?" ....I only had one request....JUST ONE, SHONDA!! That Meredith and Derek would end in a happily ever after, because after all, isn't this just one really REALLY long fairytale?? Am I right?? I grew up watching Disney movies....this was just an adult version of a Disney movie where the handsome prince gets the girl and they live happily every after. WHY OH WHY does it have to end like this???

I am actually so disappointed in what happened on tonight's episode. I know she loves using irony....but really...brain death. Also, did anyone else hold out hope till Derek'
s very last breath that things would end differently? Even when Derek kept narrating "it's too late" ...I kept thinking, "No, it's not! I know you're a brain surgeon and I'm just a stay at home mom...but it isn't too late". I am legitimately so crushed right now. I'm actually at the point where I'm secretly just hoping I'm pregnant as an explanation for this pit in my stomach and that the embarrassing cry fest can just be chalked up to the raging hormones flowing through my body. Unfortunately, I'm like 99.9% sure I'm not HAHA. 

Regardless of the amazing-ness of the show throughout the years, and actors that are currently still on the show, I will no longer be watching Grey's Anatomy. I'm not trying to throw a tantrum or act immature, I just do not think my heart can take any more. I really wish Shonda would have realized that because of the popularity of the show, and the awesome run it had, it would be better to let it go at the end of this season then to drag it on and have heartbroken fans everywhere. Alex found love with Jo, we were only Christina-less for one season and we all knew she was off pursuing her dream of printing conduit hearts, Jackson is married to April and have made it through an unthinkable tragedy...and most importantly, MerDer realized that their love was one of a kind and worth fighting for. I am so sad that Derek died, if I hadn't reiterated that point enough already. Good luck next season is all I have to say! Maybe with the unrest of the people of Grey's Anatomy, Shonda will quickly get all the actors together this week, shoot a proper Series Finale and pretend that Meredith was dreaming this whole episode. Highly unlikely though. 

RIP McDreamy

Monday, March 23, 2015

Calgary trip 03.14.15

So there is a blogger app that I totally didn't know about. Which is kind of dumb because there is an app for everything, so I should have known lol! This will make blogging so much easier!!! Last weekend we took the girls up to Calgary for the day. We didn't really have much money to spend because Andrew is in school currently and we are living off EI... Good thing I still have two more weeks of maternity leave or we would really be hooped haha. Anyways, we got up to calgary and stopped at south centre mall because they have the best disney store in Calgary. Andrew wanted to go to the disney store before eating, which for the life of me I don't understand. He hates being in crowded stores and food is always his number one priority. Anyways, the girls had a disney gift card to use and so we let Scarlette pick something. She wanted the $110 Elsa dress but she already has one from toys'r'us and I was not paying that much for a dress! She is really funny because she kept picking up toys she already has, probably because she recognizes them from home. The store was getting super crowded so we just needed to get out of there so we picked up these plush dolls. She already has a few at home and really likes them so we assumed she would also like these. 

We had some lunch and then headed to the bass pro mall. I know it has a name but we call it the bass pro mall. Andrew found some new dress pants that were on sale and Scarlette was so cute hiding in the racks! I totally use to do that as a child. 

Scarlette really loves fish so we took her to the big fish tank and she was in awe. There was some pretty big catfish in there as well, so those scared her just a tad when they came up to the glass lol. 

Anyways, I grabbed some pj's from Carter's, the deals were not that great this trip and we got our traditional crepes on the way out. Scarlette even tried to eat some gum from under the table... Puke in my mouth. I really am going to win the mommy of the year award. 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

March Mayhem!!

I feel like my life is always in "go go go" mode! I do sit down and relax but it is usually at 11pm and I fall asleep watching a show on netflix, unless it is a really good show...then I may be up a tad later than that! This week has been an especially busy week, on Monday my mom came by for a visit, bringing my closet with her. You see, I haven't exactly moved all the way out since getting married, and man can I pack a closet full of stuff!!! I had a whole garbage bag full of clothes to donate, many bins full of memories and my beautiful grad dress! I was sifting through things, deciding what to keep and what was ready to be trashed. I seriously wish I had the space to keep everything, but I had to do some major sorting and saying goodbye to things. I found tons of old projects I had done, I think I kept them because of all the time they took me, but I was able to finally let go haha. I also found a bunch of old notes that my friends and I had passed to each other. Hilarious. Those had to be kept. I almost messaged a ton of people with notes we had sent to one another. Anyways, it took me all week, whenever I had a spare moment, to sort through my closet. It is now packed away in two little totes, under the stairs. I think the best things that I found were the journals I had to keep in english class, and all the essays I wrote. I was such a wise girl for 15 years old. How have I digressed so much? It was awesome looking through all of my old stuff. One journal in particular was wrote exactly 10 years ago. So of course I had to see what I was up to exactly 10 years ago in March. I seriously wished Andrew wasn't asleep on the couch or else I would have loved to share some of this stuff with him.

On Tuesday we did our baking for the week, made a few different types of muffins. The girls played in the living room with all my old toys. So cute. Scarlette especially loves the pound puppies and mini cabbage patch dolls. We did laundry and cleaned up. How do people have a family of more then four and manage to get all the laundry done! yikes.

On Wednesday my Grandma and Aunt Bonnie (Grandma's sister) came over. They wanted to see the girls and bring over some goodies. Aunt Bonnie brought Scarlette a colouring book and Grandma brought over Lexi's birthday gift (a white dresser). The two of them think they are unstoppable and tried to carry this super heavy box with the dresser in. Needless to say, my grandma was the one walking backwards, and tripped into my house. She gave me a minor heart attack but of course was laughing hysterically at herself. Crazy lady. After they left, Andrew got home and we all went grocery shopping together. Usually I just go with the girls but Andrew is in school for a few weeks and gets home a bit earlier then normal. It is nice being able to spend a bit more time with him! After putting the groceries away, I decided to build this dresser on my own. A LOT of the pieces were mis labeled....ugh so frustrating. Eventually, I had to call Andrew for help. He finished it off for me and we were able to move it into Lexi's room right before bed time.

On Thursday, we potty trained, which was totally unexpected. About 6 weeks ago I decided that it was time for Scarlette to be potty trained. It totally could have been done sooner with how well she is doing with her speaking but things ALWAYS come up with me. I have a hard time prioritizing. There is always cheques to be written, bookkeeping to be done, photos that need my attention and the endless circle of house duties!! So anyways, back to 6 weeks ago, I told myself that this was the last box of diapers I would buy for Scarlette. I picked up the $20 pack of kinder surprise eggs (definitely the way to Scarlette's heart) at costco and was on my way! So on Thursday morning I went to change Scarlette's diaper and there were only 2 diapers left in the package!!! Dang it! So off went Scarlette's diaper and I told her that today she was a big girl. No more diapers. Only diapers for Lexi now. Let me tell you something about Scarlette, she is a BIG drinker. She hardly eats anything that isn't macaroni and cheese. So I knew we had a lot of accidents and practicing to do. Halfway through the morning I could tell she really needed to pee. I kept putting her on the potty (a small one on the floor) and she kept trying to push like she does when going poo. I tried to explain that she needed to relax. Anyways, she would NOT go. She then asked for some Macaroni for lunch. I made the macaroni and put her up to the table. I was getting frustrated by this point because she had gone 3 hours on and off the potty every 5 minutes with no results. I remembered that my sister-in-law had put my niece in a cold shower when she had an accident and that REALLY helped quicken the process. I left Scarlette eating her macaroni to tend to Lexi and not even 30 seconds later I could hear pee hitting the chair. So I grabbed her hand and told her that she had to have a shower now because she got pee all over herself. I turned the shower on, thinking it was going to be a cold shower BUT she was totally beside herself so I kept it warm and she was still scared to death to go in ( which is weird because I used to take her in the shower with me ALL the time). She cried for the whole 20 seconds she was in there and I washed her up and had her spick and span in no time! I cleaned off the chair, explained that she would have to have a shower if she had another accident and that was that. About an hour later she ran over to me and said she had to pee, I got up pretty fast, which must have scared her because she bolted over to that potty and sat down. I sat next to her and told her she just needed to relax. She stopped pushing, relaxed and WA-LA! PEE ON THE POTTY! I don't think I have been happier in my life. The handful of times she had peed on the potty previously were totally fluke! This time she actually realized she could do it and was so proud of herself! She got her first chocolate egg and was on cloud 9. She drank 1.5 L of apple juice that day, which I pair with half a cup of water. Which means, she drank about 3 L of liquid haha. She was peeing every 45 minutes, I kid you not, I have never sat by a toilet that long in my life lol. Poor Lexi didn't get a bath or much attention that day (however, I did ensure she was well fed hah!). That night we put a pull-up on her, and explained that it wasn't a diaper but night-time panties. She totally thinks it is a diaper.

On Friday the potty training continued. She was very consistent all day but I decided to limit her fluid intake so I could get a few things done. My mom and brother came over in the afternoon to bring her a Frozen chair and tell her how proud they were of her! She was over the moon, she even peed for them and was shouting "I did it! I peed on the potty". Later that evening she was super wore out so we put a pull-up on her so she could take a nap. She never naps. This potty training is serious business.

Today I ALMOST woke up in time for her to pee on the potty. By the time I got my lazy butt out of bed she had already gone in her pull-up, but it wasn't very much and super warm, so I knew it was fresh lol. The rest of the morning she peed on the potty so we told her we would take her to Cinderella for her big treat. She was so excited to go, and had been talking about it all week. I showed her the trailer and explained it wasn't a cartoon but she still asked to go. The beginning was a little slow for her but once the magic started happening she was glued. Near the end of the movie she was super antsy so I knew she probably had to pee. We left about 5 minutes before the movie ended and she peed in one of the theatre potties. She was VERY hesitant, but she really had to go. I had actually put her panties underneath the pull-up so she would feel wet if she had an accident, instead of the pull up absorbing all the pee. We then took her to toys'r'us to pick out some more big girl underwear. I picked up an "on the go" potty seat and we were set! We picked up Lexi from my moms and headed home. I went out with my friends/old roommates for supper, it was awesome! I love that I still have those girls in my life. I don't think they know how much they meant to me when life was super tough a few years back! When I got home Scarlette was telling me how many times she peed while I was gone...I don't know how much longer she will be getting a chocolate egg. We only give her one when she remembers to ask for it but we are running low!

Anyways, this was a super long post, which is usually the case because I don't blog very often. As I was looking through my old journals I had SO much inspiration to blog more. It is actually such a great thing to look back on. I know my kids will love reading my blog one day and figuring out when they did things. So here's to Scarlette on March 19th 2015 we started potty training you and it was a success!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Littles Update.

I haven't updated on the girls for a while, so here is a super boring post for everyone to skim over!

Lexi is going to be 9 months old on the 29th so I'm just thinking up some ideas for her 9 month photo shoot. I was going to try and incorporate Valentine's day and possibly get a few shots with both girls. Scarlette is NOT into photos anymore so good luck to me.  Lexi is honestly such a different baby from Scarlette. It is like night and day. Scarlette was always such a puzzle to me. Other people's babies were doing things that I couldn't get her to do if my life depended on it. Like eat. I always felt like such a failure when it came to the eating scene. To this day, I have no idea how she survived. She still is an extremely picky eater and doesn't eat much in a day. She won't go near fruit unless it is mixed with whip cream, she never eats veggies, her diet basically consists of toast, yogurt, muffins and kraft dinner haha. She also wouldn't have very many bowel movements as a baby and once she started drinking homogenized milk at 1 years old she was ALWAYS constipated. I finally had that DUH moment and realized that she has got to be allergic to something in milk. Once we switched her over to strictly water and diluted juice she hasn't been constipated once. Poor experimental first child haha. Lexi on the other hand is such a BIG eater. She will eat anything that is put in front of her. She eats every little crumb she can find on the floor and often she will eat 2 cans of baby food and a bunch of ritz crackers in one sitting. I am buying baby food almost every week with her and I think I did two hauls of baby food in 6 months with Scarlette (Again, how did she survive??).

On the sleeping front they are also very different. Scarlette and I co-slept for the first year. She was always an awesome sleeper in my bed and would hardly wake up but once we put her in the crib she would wake up multiple times a night. She napped perfectly well in her crib for 2-3 hours in the afternoon so don't ask me why she wouldn't sleep there at night. Lexi co-slept with us till we finished our basement and for the past 2 months was waking up like every 45 minutes ( I almost lost my marbles). First night in her crib she was down for 8 hours with a quick snack and back to bed for another 4 hours. Since then she has slept for 12 hours every night. AMAZING. She was SO ready to be out of our bed. Scarlette has been sleeping in her big girl bed for the past few weeks but she comes upstairs around 3-4 am every night and says "Mummy, we cuddle?" ...I cannot say no. She is just so CUTE.

Personality wise, I haven't quite figured out Lexi yet. She is always happy when she wakes up and her needs are so easy to distinguish, I know exactly when she is hungry, tired, needing cuddles etc. I don't know if that is just a second time mom thing or what. She is very active and I can tell she is much more adventurous then Scarlette. She started crawling at 7.5 months which isn't too terribly early (Scarlette was 8 months) but a week after starting to crawl she was doing the stairs, pulling herself up on things, getting into trouble!

Quick side-note/hilarious story---Scarlette and I had gone grocery shopping one evening and she requested a burger, when we got home she was eating it on the stairs as I hauled the groceries in. I thought she ate it all but she had left a small bite at the top of the stairs. The next day (when I thought Lexi was only crawling) I was editing some photos, Scarlette was playing in her new big girl room and Lexi was playing at the bottom of the stairs. All of a sudden I hear Lexi choking, I knew there was nothing to choke on at the bottom of the stairs so I booked it over there to find her at the top of the stairs eating Scarlettes hard-night-old burger. hahah. Mom of the year right there.

Lexi is around 20lbs, at least that is what she was a few months ago and I feel like she is still around the same. She has leaned out since starting to crawl. She got her two bottom teeth around 7 months and her one top tooth just popped through this week, the other looks like it will follow right away here.She isn't drinking out of a straw yet which is annoying because Scarlette figured that out at 6 months old. Both my girls REFUSED to take a bottle or soother. So it's still hard to go anywhere for a lengthy period of time. I am counting down the days till she is one and I can be done breastfeeding. It's definitely something that I am so grateful I am able to do for them and also that it saves us lots of money haha but I wouldn't say I love it. It just isn't something that I will miss doing haha. Anyways,  Lex is a great baby, I can't believe we are headed towards the first birthday already. She loves putting her little arms around your neck when you pick her up and giving a little squeeze. She plays with Scarlette like a dream! The two of them just play with the toys for hours. My toy room is heaven. They also would play in the bath together all day if I let them. Something they have in common for a change!

Scarlette is almost 2 and a half and this is by far my favourite age! She is a hoot!!! She has way too many words to list now and we are currently working on her connecting words like " Can I have juice please?" as opposed to "Juice please!" or "I want to watch cars please" as opposed to " Mom watch cars please". She has known her colours and numbers for a long time now but we are working on identifying what a 6 looks like written on a page or what word corresponds with the colour, if it's light pink or dark pink etc.. She is getting really good at identifying shapes but those dang rectangles always look like ovals to her haha!! She now counts to 25 and sings about a billion different songs. She is definitely my child. Such a performer. I do feel however, that she is quite a bit behind what other kids are doing physically at her age. She runs and plays but she is scared of everything. She won't go down a slide without someone with her. She doesn't climb or get adventurous at the playground. She definitely is a wall-flower at nursery and is very passive when playing with other kids. It's kind of a catch 22 because I would love for her to get more involved with the kids around her and socialize a bit more but at the same time she is so sweet with kids that are younger then her, especially with her sister. I have never once been worried about leaving them alone together. I run around the house doing chores as they are playing downstairs together. Scarlette is definitely a shy and sensitive soul but when it's just our little family she comes out of her shell and is really quite funny! I love both my girls to death! They are just my dream come true!! I couldn't ask for better kids. Anyways, here is a few photos of us at my cousins wedding.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Christmas 2014

Christmas this year was pretty different from most other years! We had to try and get to a million different places while still trying to have a few moments together as a little family. It was crazy at times but we made it all work out. Christmas Eve we spent time together just the four of us. I wrapped the remaining presents, cleaned the house, made sure the girls had their Christmas PJ's on and let the girls unwrap a present each. Scarlette opened her "Anna" doll and was super excited about it! 
While I was upstairs putting a memory card in the camera, Scarlette took it upon herself to open one of Lexi's gifts, what a nice sister. 

The girls with their "Christmas Eve" gifts.

mmm... I love babies!! Especially my own hah.

Please ignore my frazzled my whole house took ALL day lol.

Lexi with her "flap" books and Scarlette with Anna.

Lexi absolutely loves books with flaps! 

After they played with their gifts for a bit, it was time for bed! Santa didn't get finished at our house till 2am last year and he didn't want to make that a yearly occurrence. Thankfully, I am pretty sure Santa was done at 11:30 pm this year. 

Growing up we always got either a CD or a DVD in our stocking.  We would then watch our movies after all the Christmas festivities were over and continue the movie marathon on boxing day. Definitely a tradition I wanted to continue. 

Scarlette got Cars 1. 

Lex got Pirate Fairy...correction...Scarlette got Pirate Fairy

Mom got Pocahontas...correction...Scarlette got Pocahontas. 

Dad got Guardians of the Galaxy and Quality Street. Dad was in charge of Mom's stocking and she got squat haha.I should have known.

Santa brought Lexi some drums. 

Scarlette got a Frozen Guitar, lip chap and a microphone from Santa.

Oh Christmas Tree!

Christmas morning we had to wake the girls up around 8:30. I still don't think they really "get" Christmas. Scarlette never asked to open any gifts before Christmas and she didn't go to bed excited hahah maybe next year... 

So here is the list of loot for journaling purposes. Skip ahead.

Scarlette: Anna doll w/Sven and mini olaf, Anna and Elsa bracelet + Socks, Frozen guitar + microphone, Anna and Elsa magic clip dolls, Ariel barbie that changes color in hot/cold water, matching game, grocery cart + Frozen purse with necklace and rings inside from Great Grandma Lyons, Kitchen set and food from Grandma Hendry, Pink rocking horse from Grandpa Hendry and a beautiful church book from Grandma/Grandpa Maclean with music and pictures. Spoiled rotten. 

Lexi: Drums, books, monkey toy with gears that stack and spin, a beautiful red Christmas dress from Great Grandma Lyons, shared kitchen set from Grandma Hendry and shared rocking horse from Grandpa Hendry. Lexi kind of got the short end of the stick this year....too many baby toys already haha!!

Me: Piano bench....anyone in the market for two computer chairs haha?? Also, a new TV that we bought on boxing day haha. Grandma Lyons got me this super cute mustard clock that I had been eyeing. My mom got me a Lulu jacket and PJ's that matched her and my sister. My dad got me a Bose speaker thing that uses bluetooth with my iPhone. Andrew picked out a cute little ring that said love on it for me.

Andrew: Sweat pants and a new hoodie (we call it his lounge wear!) TV and food storage from his parents. My Mom and Dad both gave Andrew money which we put in with our money for the TV....he totally looks like he is also getting the shaft as far as gifts go haha. 

OK so my sister in law Anna had her baby right before christmas and my in-laws went to be with her while she had the baby. We decided to do a little get together with the Macleans on Christmas day in place of the dinner my in-laws usually have. After the girls opened their gifts I started making parts of the meal that I was in charge of and also listening in on my brother Austin, who was skyping my Mom. I wasn't going to have time to get all the way over there, make the meal and get all the way back so I had to FaceTime with Ciara in order to hear what he was saying. My parents had split time with him so the second half of his call was made to my Uncle Ron's and Aunt Paula's house ....seeing as they live in Riverstone we quickly drove over there to see him for that half of his Skype date while my part of the meal was cooking. He looked AWESOME! I was SO excited to see him. Scarlette sang him twinkle twinkle and he thought that was adorable. She has changed so much since he left and it was nice that she wasn't being a grump face while he called. Lexi was just a newborn last time we skyped him so he was pretty excited to see her too. After we were done chatting with Austin we came back home and had Joe, Sam, Miram, Barry and Emma over for lunch/dinner. We had ham/funeral potatoes/buns/salad and cheesecake. The Maclean's are definitely the type of family that just likes to chill out and chat which was nice. I had a bit of time in between dinners to clean up the kitchen and get the girls ready before heading over to my Grandma's for dinner. The girls played while we ate and had treats. Anyone who knows my grandma knows she makes a spread for any get together...and by spread I 15 different dishes haha! She had a huge turkey which was delicious, as well as a million different other things to choose from. We visited for a bit over there and then headed home so I could spend some time with my Dad. Scarlette started coming down with croup that night so instead of staying home we loaded up Lex and left Andrew and Scarlette at home and headed over to my Uncle Ron's house for dessert and games. I absolutely love it over there. If anyone ever wants to know why I want a bunch of kids it is because of them. Their family is so awesome. I hope one day that I have my 5 kids come over with their spouses and have big games nights like they do. We played five crowns, had dessert and chatted a bit. It is so fun being over there. When I got home Scarlette was sleeping and Andrew was watching his new movie. I love that guy. I can get him to do a few Christmasy things with me but in the end he always ends up in his lounge wear, watching a movie, stuffing his face with Quality street. This is 5 years running people haha!! Anyways, that was pretty much it for the day! I did learn an invaluable lesson though that I really wanted to record. It is basically the reason why I was so anxious to get this post down. Christmas can be such a stressful time and I admit that I always get wrapped up in the running around, picking the perfect gift, trying to get to a million places and see a million people all in one day. BUT. Christmas is about Christ. It is about Family. It is about LOVE. As I was running about Christmas eve and Christmas day, trying to get my house ready and food on the table for our guests, I couldn't believe my ingratitude. Some people have absolutely NOTHING on Christmas day. No Christmas dinner, No presents under the tree, No family to share it with. I had a million different options for Christmas Eve and Christmas day. I had invitations to a bunch of different places and I was getting stressed out trying to make it to every single one. I then changed my thinking. I am SO blessed to have all the family I do. To top it all off, all my family lives close, so I get to see everyone. Andrew and I have been blessed by the Lord and were able to get Christmas gifts for the kids and each other. We had so much food stuffed into our bellies that day that we could have exploded. Next year I am definitely looking at Christmas differently. I am blessed to have an amazing family, blessed to have so many material things, blessed to be able to bring joy to my children and blessed to be able to have the gospel of Jesus Christ in my home. I'm so excited for what this new year will bring for us Macleans!