New Year's Eve

>> Monday, December 31, 2018


We celebrated New Year's Eve with all the kid's friends this year!! 






We played games, ate, froze our tooshies off outside, and ate some more! :P 



 Even Sammy joined in! LOL!


Actually, he gets pretty nervous with fireworks so we gave him a little sedative to help him. It worked like a charm and he had a hard time keeping his eyes open for all the fun! Hahaha! 






These crazy girls decided it would be fun to play volleyball outside in the freezing rain! 




Just before midnight the rain slowed to a drizzle and we were able to do sparklers and fireworks! 











We bought a BIG fireworks box nicknamed Godzilla. It was the biggest one they had! It was pretty awesome!!!









We got our Martinelli's ready for the countdown.....





 And watched the ball drop.....






 And rung in the New Year with our family and friends!!!! <3 



It was so much fun!




Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!!




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Young Women & Primary Graduation!

>> Sunday, December 30, 2018

Alayna turned 12 last week but our church schedule was off because of Christmas. The Church has made a lot of new changes in the last week or so and so it's made things even more crazy. 

In Primary, in our Ward, it's been tradition on your birthday to have a "Red Carpet" ceremony for the kids turning 12. At that age they move up to Young Women or Young Men and graduate from Primary. 
We didn't have regular church on her bday. We only had Sacrament Meeting because if Christmas. So they post-poned it to today. However, the Church has made a BIG change for the youth and now the children who "will be" turning 12 that year will now in January all graduate from Primary. Those changes are for all youth actually. They will now move up all together at the beginning of the year accordingly instead of at their bdays. Which means Alayna will actually lose a year in Young Women and only be a Beehive for one year. It's a little bananas! But we know inspired by the Lord. 

So to make a long story even longer...LOL! She was invited to sing with the Youth today because she's technically a Young Woman now but she hasn't yet had her Red Carpet ceremony for Primary. She's been dying go to Young Women so of course she jumped at the chance. It was also really neat to see her and Eli participate together! It's been a while since our kids have been able to do something together in church because of their ages being so far apart. 




We have a LOT more youth than this too. Several families were out of town for the holidays.


The musical number in Sacrament was beautiful. They sang, "Peace in Christ." 

Alayna went to YW for a little bit in 3rd hour (which is also the last time we'll have 3rd hour church. Another BIG change is that church is only 2 hours now starting in January. The 3 hr block was implemented in 1980 and in Oct. 2018 General Conference it was announced our meeting time would change to 2 hours with a new added home centered program to be implemented called, "Come, Follow Me." 

Since Pres. Nelson has been called as our new prophet, after Pres. Monson's passing a year ago, there have been some major changes to all areas of the Church. It's been exciting to see that the Gospel is still being fully restored on the Earth and that the Lord still speaks to us today and gives us revelation for our time!!) 

The last 20 minutes of church, the Primary invited parents and children who will be leaving next month to come in and watch a little picture/slide show and Red Carpet ceremony. It was really cute to see how adorable they all were as babies and growing up until now. 





The YW/YM do a little tunnel for the graduating kids and welcome them into their respective classes. It's a fun little tradition our Ward does! 



  



And there your have it.....She's officially moved on to Young Womens! So excited for her! <3 

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Alayna's 1st Temple Trip- Family Temple Day!

>> Friday, December 28, 2018


Family Temple Day!! 💒 

Alayna has been SO excited to turn 12 so she can go to the Temple. 
Today was her very first time! ❤️

 It was a beautiful experience to have our entire family there today. Words can't describe how much my heart was filled to watch Walker officiate baptisms for the very first time for his younger brother Eli and then each one of us. Seeing the pure joy on Alayna's face as we arrived this morning and being blessed to be the one to help her find her way around and then see her face light up as her name was called to go down into to the baptismal font was so fun to be apart of and watch. And then for Jared, who typically isn't very emotional or have many words to say, become moved to tears by the Spirit for one of his ancestors and hear him bear his testimony to our children was incredible!! 💕 It was absolutely perfect! My cup runneth over! 💞


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Visiting Old Friends

>> Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Went to see old friends! 💕 

It was so good to see Jared's best friend from childhood and his family. Greg moved up to Washington State several years ago and we don't see him and his family very often. They made the trip down to AZ to see his parent's for Christmas and they invited us, Rich and Rita over to catch up!  






The Somero's are a wonderful family. It was wonderful getting together! It's always sweet when you see friends and it feels like no time has passed at all even though it's been too many years to count. <3 

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Christmas Day!

>> Tuesday, December 25, 2018

 Christmas Day seems to start later and later each year as the kids get older. :P 


When everyone finally rolled out of bed the wrapping paper started to fly! :) 



Eli came up with a really cool gift idea for Walker this year. He ordered him a set of 40 custom dice in his favorite color and with his favorite letter of the alphabet! Walker was stoked!!! They haven't arrived so he showed him what they looked like from a picture on his phone. He had been emailing the guy who makes them for several days getting them exactly right. <3 Such a personal and thoughtful gift! 







Alayna got Eli modeling clay and Walker a phone holder for his car. 


Walker got Alayna this super big and soft pillow that matches her new bedding for her room. 


Sammy quickly claimed it as his own and it had us all cracking up! 






Alayna got me this cool lens adapter for my phone to take pictures with. 



My best friend AnnMarie made me this cute banner. 


Santa brought Sammy some treats and it was hilarious to watch him try to get at them! LOL! 




Dad helped him out and got him is prized treat! 


Every year Eli gets Alayna a new bathrobe. It's tradition. He's been telling her he didn't get her one this year. Boy...she sure was surprised when she opened his gift!!!! <3 




Alayna loves to draw and she's always laying on the floor or couches all in a pretzel knot trying to get comfortable while she's doing it. So a drawing laptop desk made her so happy! 


Santa, Mom & Dad went in on their big gifts this year. 


They all got cash! :P 


Jared loves his funny shirts. So I got him a couple of new ones. 




Our traditional pic with Santa! 

All that gift opening got our appetites going. It was time for breakfast/brunch. I made German Pancakes and eggs. I told everyone they are basically eating the same thing but the pancakes have flour. But it's what they wanted they said. LOL! 


  

Alayna got a bath bomb making set from Grandma and Grandpa. Her and Eli went to work after brunch and put them to use! Hehe! 


In the afternoon we went over to Jeff & Bea's to hang out and play games with the family. 



 Alayna drew Mamaw a special picture for her gift. She loved it! 






We ate, visited, played games and relaxed. 









Alayna was the dog whisperer! :P 






Mamaw beat everyone at Yahtzee! :) 




My oldest and youngest! <3 Love my kids so much!


We wanted to make sure we didn't forget to take pictures with the Grandparents! (Never mind that Alayna and Eli are in their pj's and my hair isn't done. LOL! ) 
  


 Merry Christmas from the Kitch's!!!





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