Today I was in the kitchen making cookies for my friend's baby shower and Madison wanted to help. I let her push the cookie cutter into the dough to help make the duck shaped cookies. Part way through, she realized that we were making little ducks and she kept pointing the cookies and saying, "cookies, quack quack." It was so cute...it was almost as if she was waiting for the cookie to make the sound of a real duck.
This year we kept up our tradition of having friends, who have become like family, over for Thanksgiving. This year we had Diana and her son Levi, Margot, Rachel, and Joey and Lindsey. We are so thankful for the amazing friends we have here in Twentynine Palms and we are especially thankful for our Lord who has provided all of our great friends! Thanksgiving is a special holiday to me, and not just because of the food. I love taking the time to really sit and contemplate all of the blessings in my life. Last year, we started the tradition of sharing what we are thankful for. We all get our food and then one by one we go around the table and share. Last year, when Ben (Diana's husband), shared what he was thankful for I was truly touched, so much so that I think every year from here on out I will always think of the Brewster's at Thanksgiving. In a nut shell, Ben shared about how he's so thankful for our amazing Savior and the life we find in Him and how especially now that we have kids, it brings a whole new level of understanding to what that sacrifice truly meant! Anyway, for our friends and loved ones that couldn't be with us this year due to being deployed, distance, or just other circumstances, we missed you and you were thought of.
Our little turkey
Here are Madison and Levi watching the Thanksgiving Day Parade
Lindsey excited for dinner (which consisted of turkey, spiced apples, cranberry sauce, broccoli casserole, corn casserole, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, stuffing, rolls, and gravy)
Madison getting ready to dig in
The dinner table
Madison enjoying one of Rachel's amazing cookies after dinner (she was in cookie coma)
8 FAVORITE T.V. SHOWS: 1. LOST 2. Biggest Loser 3. Prison Break 4. Sarah Conner Chronicals 5. House 6. Kitchen Nightmares 7. Amazing Race 8. So You Think You Can Dance
8 FAVORITE RESTAURANTS 1. Claim Jumper 2. Cheese Cake Factory 3. Bandit's BBQ 4. Wahoo's 5. BJ's Bar and Brewery 6. PF Changs 7. Las Brisas 8. Blue Agave
8 THINGS THAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY: (Saturday, November 22nd) 1. Got Madison dressed 2. Got gas in the car 3. Went through Startbucks 4. Went to Costco with the fam 5. Played with Madison 6. Made dinner for the fam 7. Put Madison to bed 8. Hung out with the hubby
8 THINGS TO LOOK FORWARD TO: 1. Thanksgiving 2. Melissa's Baby Shower 3. Watching Diana's face light up when her best friend comes home 4. John Mayer Concert 5. Levi's Birthday 6. Christmas Parties 7. Jordan coming home 8. Starting our Home Group
8 THING I LOVE ABOUT FALL: 1. The leaves changing color 2. Hot Apple Cider 3. Holidays 4. Spending extra time with family 5. Fireplaces 6. Pumpkin foods 7. Movies 8. Knowing that it's almost time to go look at Christmas lights
8 THINGS ON MY WISH LIST: 1. For my friends' husbands to come home safely 2. For those who lost their homes in the fires to find comfort during this tough time 3. For Madison to come to know the Lord at a young age 4. For Madison's dreams to come true 5. For Alex to find the right job once he's out of the Marine Corps 6. For us to be able to buy a house 7. To go horseback riding soon 8. To go to Maui again
8 PEOPLE I TAGGED: 1. All my 29 Palms girls 2. Stephanie 3. Jennifer 4. Jen 5. My girls from Orange County (Renee this still includes you) 6. Emma 7. Kaylee 8. Anyone who wants to do this
Madison and Levi just keep growing in their love for each other and have come to really enjoy their play dates! Last night Diana and Levi came over for the evening and we went to the park (while there was still some light out) before we came back and had a BBQ. We love having these two over and can't wait until those two are a three (Ben comes home in a few weeks)!!!!!
Here are some pictures of the kiddos playing away!!!!
Madison on the big kid swing
Levi making his way to the slide
Levi going down the big kid slide
Madison and Daddy
Levi on the swing
Madison in the car
Levi in the car
Madison and Levi in the car
Last picture of the night before we went inside for our BBQ
Every year in the Marine Corps there is the time honored tradition of the Birthday Ball. The Marine Corps' actual birthday is the 10th of November, so the ball usually falls on or around this date each year. This year our ball was on the 14th and it was held in Primm, Nevada. I had never been to Primm before. It is more in the middle of nowhere than we are out here in Twentynine Palms. Alex and I had a lot of fun this year. Last year's ball was fun, but we knew a lot more people this year, so that always makes it better!
We stayed in the Primm Valley Casino Hotel, not bad for $27 a night. Can't beat that! This is also where the actual ball was held. They had a huge convention center that held all 2,000 of us. I have come to love the traditions at the Marine Corps Ball. This year felt especially special, maybe because I have so many dear friends overseas right now, but something was just different about this ball.
One of the most sentimental parts of the ceremony is when they take a moment of silence to remember all of those fallen Marines who couldn't be with us because they have made the ultimate sacrifice. I was able to get a picture of the table set in honor of these Marines before it got too crowded.
There is also the traditional birthday cake. During the formal ceremony the oldest Marine at each ball cuts the first piece and takes a bite and then passes it the youngest Marine among the group and he/she takes a bite!
Here are some pictures from the night:
Me and Erin
Me, Erin, and Stacy
John and Alex
Me and Alex
Me and Stacy
Stacy and John
Me and Rhonda
Lt. Col Ashbacher and Capt. Parch (per alex's request)
UPDATE: our dear friends the Thayer's lost their house to the fires...please keep them in your prayers, along with the many others who I've heard have lost their houses as well.
I am writing to ask you to pray for everyone dealing with the Orange County fires....
We have so many friends who have been evacuated from their homes and not sure of the status of their homes. Alex's parents are just waiting with their cars packed for their evacuation notice.....
Alex's parents live on a big hill and his mom said that it is such a scary sight from their back yard....she said it's like Armageddon, everything is on fire and the night time just emphasizes the red and orange flames.
So again, please keep everyone in your prayers and pray that the winds stop and that the firemen and women will be able to get all of these fires under control!
This past weekend we drove out to my parents house for the long weekend. We had a blast! We hung out with my parents, saw some friends, went to the book store, hung out with Great Grandpa Bill and had a lot of yummy food!!!! Madison had fun showing off how much she's talking now and just being a ham for the camera. She has quite the personality these days and loves entertaining, especially people she doesn't get to see every day.
Just hanging out at home with mom
Visiting Dana (Jaclyn's mom) at work
At Borders, showing grandpa all of the cool books
Giving baby Ellie a hug (this is my friend Alyssa's 9 week old little girl)
Walking in mommy's flip flops
Being silly with daddy
Hamming it up
Sitting with Great Grandpa Bill
Sharing the massage chair with grandpa
We were being silly one night and gave Madison her bath in the sink....she thought we were crazy
I love to get up early and work out. It starts my day off with energy while giving me peace and quiet as well as time to myself to talk with God. I am married to a wonderful man with whom we have a beautiful daughter and a dashing son! Life can't get much better than this!!