Friday, December 16, 2011

Merry Christmas from the Darby Family

Merry Christmas from the Darby Family.  Christmas card, 2011

Monday, December 12, 2011

Our first snow in Little Rock

We experienced our first snow in Little Rock and wow, it was gorgeous! It was the "perfect snow" because there was just enough snow to cover everything, but the roads were clear. Sparing you all of my cheesy Hallmark sayings, I'll just leave it at this. As I drove to and from taking the kids to school, I talked to God. And He talked to me. I kept pulling over to take was a beautiful, spiritual morning for me. And in that time, I was reminded that in just one night God can change everything. One snow reminded me that seasons come and go, that times changes and no matter where we are in our life, time continues to move forward. And that, it a beautiful thing.

Speaking of beautiful:

Our front porch

View from our porch
Our yard
Our home

Golf course

Pleasant Valley

The park

The street sign I pass every morning
Look at all the snow - gorgeous!

Street view
Beautiful trees

Santa's beautiful little helper

Alex has been so excited to have her picture taken with Freddy the Elf at her elementary school. We talked about it a few times and I marked my calendar to make sure she was dressed appropriately for the "big event."

Alex has an adorable Santa dress and she chose to wear it for her pictures with Freddy. I got her all dressed up and we took pictures by the Christmas tree. It was a warm and fuzzy moment. Nathan's precious comment to me was, "Are you sure you want her to wear that Santa dress? Kids might make fun of her." And I said, "She is adorable and she chose it."

We all went about our days as usual...and then at about 2:30 I get a reminder on my calendar that says "ELF PICTURES TOMORROW AT ALEX'S SCHOOL." OH NO!!!!!!
I was laughing hysterically at myself for being an idiot and worried about Alex all at the same time. I wasn't sure what her response was going to be getting off the bus. With Alex, it's black or gray. I was dreading pick-up and grabbed my Barbie Christmas DVD I had in my super secret stash spot for an occasion such as this. Sure enough...the bus pulled up and Alex comes off the bus crying. I feel like the

Fortunately, she just got her conduct card pulled for talking during reading time. It took me a few minutes to get through drama, but I was so relieved I wasn't in trouble. Once things settled down a bit I asked, "So, did you take pictures with Freddy the Elf today?" She said, "Oh yeah - Mom, the pictures are tomorrow you silly! But guess what? I got lots of compliments on my dress so I think I'll just wear it again tomorrow." WHEW!

I told DeDe about the incident and being the magic elf she is, she went home and made a special Christmas shirt for Alex to wear to school the next day. Who can just crank out a home made Christmas shirt in a day? Seriously, she's too much!

Alex didn't have to wear her dress two days in a row...and I am not the worst mom ever (yet). Here are the adorable pictures from day one...and day two :)

Day 1 - Santa dress

She is such a beauty (inside and out)

Day 2 - DeDe's Christmas shirt

All ready to go!

Alex actually believes that Criddle, her elf at home, went back to Santa's workshop that night and told Santa about the dress...and she thinks she earned "extra Christmas spirit credit" for dressing up two days in a row.

Riiiiight :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Blessed beyond measure...
I've had a blast decorating our new home. God is good. I just look around and say "is the real" and "wow, thank you."
Living room

The mantle (my favorite)

Our new 9 foot tree

Porch decorations


View from the top

Formal Dining Room
We hope you enjoy the holidays as much as we are!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A day in heaven...

Heaven's Seven Ranch - Farmersville, Texas

As I mentioned last week, we loaded up the family for a quick trip to Texas. We were fortunate to stay with the whole clan out at "Heaven's Seven Ranch." My parents are living here and enjoying it so much. I love hearing them talk about "country living" and all of the excitement that comes with it.

We had a fantastic visit and man, did we eat like kings (and queens). Kelley was amazing in the kitchen - and we had a wonderful time catching up with everyone. I loved that Grandma "Granddam" got to see my babies and I LOVED getting to hug my CANCER FREE Aunt Genie. God is awesome and faithful. We had a lot of blessings to celebrate this year.  Alex and Carson had a blast playing with Scott & Kelley's kids - fun was had by all.

Back to the ranch...The family just got a new horse, Houdini. YaYa (my mom) was in heaven (literally) as she took us out for a ride. I think it's the happiest I've seen her in a few years. Especially in that moment. The pictures explain much better than I can:

The girls in action

Beautiful Mom

Happy, happy girl

THIS IS HAPPINESS.  Mom, I adore this photo of you! 

Did I mention Alex rode bareback?!?  STUD!

Amazing!  So proud of my daughter

Alex was patient and sweet - careful and cautious

I even got to take a turn riding bareback - amazing experience!  I grew up riding and man, I miss it.

Interesting clothing choice, eh?  LOL!  PJ's :)

Happy girls!

Alex loved leading me...

Doesn't get better than this.  Ever.

YaYa and Sissy show Carson how to pet Houdini

Carson was incredibly responsive and thought the horse was "awesome"

The boys loved watching us girls play

Hieee!  Am I precious?

Running, running, running

Look at my mom's face - precious  moments

"Nice job, Carson" - he said that to himself after petting Houdini

Kids and animals - one of my favorite combos

Sweet girls - Natalee Grace and Alex

Carson actually fed Houdini too!

As you can see, it was a special, magical day for our family.