Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Moments

We had a wonderful Christmas.  I hope yours was just as special.  I hope Santa brought you everything you hoped for.  I hope you felt the love of your family.  More then anything, I hope your Christmas was full of the sweet reminders that the Lord loves us.  I know mine was.

Christmas night

Christmas 7

Christmas traditions

Christmas 2011-12

Homemade Pajamas

Christmas pjs 4

Christmas 2011-28

….and the stockings were hung.

Christmas 20111

Christmas morning

Christmas 1

Santa’s surprises

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My greatest joy.

Stella 3

There is nothing better then their smiles on Christmas morning.

Christmas 2011-116

Their smiles make it all worth it.

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Christmas 2011-145

I am reminded that I have been greatly blessed.


Christmas Sunset

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Christmas evening with friends and loved ones.

Christmas 20113

We are thankful to have such wonderful friends.

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What a beautiful reminder it was to attend church on Christmas day. 

What a beautiful reminder of why we celebrate Christmas.

What a beautiful day spent with the ones I love.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Holiday Hoopla 2

I have been a little MIA.  Christmas parties, photo shoots, photo editing, class Christmas parties and all the traditions with the kiddos have kept me from blogging.  I haven’t minded.  Tis the season.

This is what we have been up to. 

Lots of parties.

I hosted a My favorite things party with my friend Marji.  We had a great night, complete with a hot chocolate bar.

Favorite part

I helped with four classroom parties and prepared a Christmas lunch for the teachers.  I love being at the school with my kids. It’s the best place to serve.

We went out to see the lights for family home evening.

Garvin Gardens

Garvin Gardens is a family tradition.  It is beautiful.

Garvin Gardens1

The kids look forward to it every year.



The kids are always mesmerized by how many lights there are.



This is our last year at Garvin Gardens.  It was one of those strange moments thinking that we would never do this again.

Family 2

This year, the kids wanted to have a friend Christmas party.  The kids each invited over a few classmates for pizza, games, and fun.

Kids milk and cookies party

The kids made a snow globe out of a mason jar, small trees, and glitter.

We played bingo and play dough Pictionary.

Kids milk and cookies party1

Then we frosted and sprinkled cookies; homemade sugar cookies for Santa.

I have still been working some.  I have enjoyed all the work, although it does keep me very busy.  I am behind on updating my photography blog.  I still have so many shoots to post.  I promise to get updated soon.

Last but not least, we are still getting ready for the day when the big man flies.  I still have some more wrapping to do, and a little cooking.

I think these little elves are ready.

Kids by the tree

This one is still trying to decide if he is going to be naughty or nice.

Kids by the tree1

I think he will make the right choice. 

I will be back after the Holidays.

Merry Christmas to all… and to all a good night.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Jubilation and Holiday Hoopla

We have been up to a lot of Holiday Hoopla around here.  We are having such a nice holiday. 

I will fill you in:

Candy for me-38

We have been receiving lots of cards and packages.  I love getting the mail at Christmas time.  The other day I got this in the mail from my blog friend Stella.  She lives in the Netherlands.  She said it is custom to receive your initial in chocolate at the holidays.  So she made sure that I got one.  Isn’t that so sweet.  Thank you Stella.

Snow fall

It snowed a little bit here one day.  What a perfect Holiday  surprise.

Snow fall1

Tess and Isaac had a blast playing in it.

I decided we needed a dessert in honor of the snow that wasn’t deep enough to build a snowman.  This was our Sunday night dessert.

Cookie Cake-26

We participated in Toy hill here in Arkansas. We donated some new toys and took them up to the drop off sight.  The marines were loading all the toys in to a Pepsi truck.

Toy Hill1

The kids enjoyed picking out a toy for someone else, and then seeing them load the toys. It made it real for them.  It helped them understand that there are children in Arkansas who are not as blessed as they are.  After we gave the Marines our toys, we stayed and listened to the music and had some snacks.  It was a nice day.

Toy Hill2

Jex had his Christmas program.  It was adorable.  All the third graders sang Christmas songs, and they also danced to some songs.

Jex Christmas Program 

One of the songs they sang was Christmas Jubilation.  It is the cutest song.  One of those catchy tunes, that gets stuck in your head.

I have been working a lot the last few weeks.   One of my favorite things is to design cards and announcements.  I have been doing a little of that.  I am giving you a sneak peak because I haven’t even shared these on my photo blog yet. 

Christmas Card Idea


Christmas card Idea Back copy


Front of card Maddox


Back of the card Maddox


I just love Christmas cards.

I added a new ornament to our tree. It is in honor of baby Ruby.

Christmas tree lights-4

It is a red bird.  It says in Remembrance of Ruby June.  It is in the center of my tree.  I love it.

Christmas tree lights-2

I hope you are enjoying all your holiday hoopla.

Christmas tree lights-3 

I hope your holiday is magical.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Look what I got…

Tess Bed 1

I am a big girl now.

Tess bed 2

I love having my own bed.  I like that it is Mink(pink.)

I am doing so good.  I stay in my bed like I am supposed to.  My mom says she is proud of me.

Girls room-1

My mom put some Christmas trees in my room for the holidays.

Girls room-2

They are mink too.

Tess new bed and winter hat

My mom takes way too many pictures of me. 

Have a happy weekend.

Stay warm.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Letter

I sent out my Christmas card and letter this week.  Phew! What a relief. 

I wanted to go ahead and share our Christmas greetings here as well. 

There are so many readers of J and A and Co. that I don’t know personally.  I want to give a big shout out to you. I want to say thank you for reading my blog.  I appreciate all your love and kind words.  I hope the holidays in your home are magical, and leave you laughing all the way.

Christmas Card 2011 front copy

Christmas Card 2011 back

The swenson family in numbers

Speaking of Christmas letters.  Our kiddos wrote theirs to Santa this week.

Christmas Letter

Christmas Letter1

I have a letter that I typed up, and they fill in the blanks.  It makes it so easy for them. 

Santa Letter

Click on the letter if you would like to download this for your family.

After they are all filled out, we leave them in our Santa mailbox. It is a small Christmas mailbox that hangs on a hook in our house.  Then the elf comes to pick them up.

This year, Owen the Elf was assigned to our family.  He was so nice and left the kids a note and some candy canes.

Stella decided that she wanted to be Owen’s pen pal.  They are now exchanging notes back and forth via our Santa mailbox.

I love Christmas.

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