Friday, November 30, 2012

Christmas has arrived at the Rich home!

In the midst of the chaos of raising 5 kids, moments like these when they exclaim "this is the best night ever!" make it all worthwhile...

Grace chose our tree this year.

They were so excited about decorating it!

Daniel and I did not have to hang a single ornament this year!

Mercy concentrating.

Taking a break from decorating to enjoy peanut butter cookies
and cold egg nog!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend 2012

We had a great Thanksgiving weekend! Hope that you all did too. We decided before Susanna was born that we would stay home this year and not go to GA since she would only be 2 weeks old and I would still be recovering. We invited both families here to celebrate and a co-worker of Daniels who brought his elderly father along. I forgot to take pictures of everyone who came but both sets of parents, Carly, Carter and Kendon were all able to come.  Josh, Paola and Julia were able to make the trip from GA as well. They were unsure whether they should come since Paola was on the tail end of a cold. Since she was 6 days into the cold and almost completely over it, I told them to come on. Unfortunately Josh woke up with a bad cold the morning after they arrived and everyone went behind him with a can of lysol or clorox wipes all weekend and confined him to one bathroom. Everyone was concerned about Susanna and forbid him to even sneeze in the house. It was hilarious watching him run outside to sneeze. Poor Josh! Everyone helped clean the house with bleach before they left and spray down the furniture and rooms with lysol. Praise God we were able to spend Thanksgiving with them AND Daniel was still able to return to work today with me and all 5 children well and happy! God is good! 
I didn't do hardly any cooking this year. Poor Grandma was up until 1:30am doing her portion of the cooking and mine. What would we do without family? What a blessing that Daniel and I have 2 wonderful families! Its something that I don't take for granted. 

We celebrated Mercy's birthday again with her grandparents and some of
her Aunts and Uncles.

Mercy trying on her pink coat from Nana!
Excited to get some handmade outfits from Grandma for her new
bitty twins!
Little Julia Hope! 11 months old.

My girls with cousin Julia
 We all went to a park on Friday since everyone was feeling cooped up and we don't have much of a yard. We had alot of fun! The guys all played football and the girls/ladies talked and played on the playground.

Beautiful Grace, going on 6 years old!

Isaac swinging oh so high!

Daniel being silly

Isaac airborne!
Since we won't get to see everyone again for Christmas, we went ahead
and exchanged Christmas gifts. 
The kids were SO excited to open their gifts!

Grandma and Grandpa were sad that they won't
see Susanna again until January and she will be
much bigger:-(. So hard to live so far from

Saturday, November 24, 2012

On Building Relationships with Our Children.

Do you know how important it is to have strong healthy relationships with your children? Are you damaging your relationships with them without realizing it?

 This is a topic that is very important to me. I spend alot of time thinking about how I can have stronger relationships with my children. I know it is so important! I feel that God gave me a revelation about this earlier this week and I just wanted to share it.

Daniel and I have been married going on 10 years. I was thinking about just how much it blesses us both that my parents pray with us every time they see us that our home will sell quickly and that we will be able to move onto land soon. They do that because they know it is the desire of our hearts and because it is important to us, it is also important to them.

What a revelation!! No matter how old you are, it means so much to know that what is important to you is also important to your parents. How often do we tear our children's hopes and dreams down by being negative or saying things that are best left unsaid? Do we let our children know that we are fighting for what is important to them? Do we truly take the time to put ourselves in their shoes no matter how trivial the situation seems?

We want to make more effort to be sure that Isaac, James, Grace, Mercy and Susanna know that what is important to them is also important to Mommy and Daddy!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mercy's Thanksgiving Program

Mercy has been attending Cedarwood Pre-school since the beginning of this school year. She loves it! Her pre-school put on a cute little Thanksgiving Program on their last day of school before Thanksgiving Break. She was the cutest little Indian! Susanna was not yet 2 weeks old but I just had to be there:-). Thankgoodness Grandma was here to help me get there with all the kids and food for the dinner afterwards or I most certainly would have never made it!

She melted Mommy's heart:-).
The entire Pre-school. I love how small it is!
Our whole family made it to support our little Mercy:-).

Monday, November 19, 2012

Susanna's Baby Shower

Some wonderful friends of mine decided to throw a baby shower/celebration for Susanna and I. It was so much fun just to celebrate her birth and share her birth story with everyone. They took the time to pray over us and share in our joy over a busy Thanksgiving week. Thank God for wonderful friends! It was great that Grandma was spending a week with us and got to be part of it.  Grace was thrilled that she got to be part of it as well and enjoyed handing me all the gifts to open. Little Susanna was blessed with lots of diapers, wipes and girly things!

Left to Right: Shannon Matyas, Becky Samuelson, Kimmy Bears, Kensie
and Cristen Semones, Shalene Massie, Eden Semones, Lindsey Pate
and Abby, myself, grandma and Grace, Allison Keys,
Erin Elam. Love these ladies! 

Half the heads are chopped off in this one but I had to include it
because my sweet friend Alison Semones who organized
the shower is on the bottom right hand corner! She was
the one taking the other pic:-). 


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Susanna's Visitors

Our children only have 1 living great-grandparent,
Ervin Rich (PawPaw) pictured above with wife Charlotte.
They came to see Susanna on her 1 week birthday.

PawPaw wanted a picture with all 5 children in order:-).

I forgot to get a picture of Susanna meeting
her Nana and Pops in the hospital
but I got one at the house when
they brought the kids home. I so
appreciated their help with the kids!

Daniel went to Knoxville to get Grandma Jan to stay with us
for a week. They got back very late but Susanna and I stayed up
 and waited. Here is Grandma getting her first look at Susanna!

My good friend Molly Hash gave birth to a baby girl (Sadie) just 4 months
ago. Isaac and Annalia had fun comparing their baby sisters during
the Hash's visit. Molly is a brave woman. She brought us a meal
and then offered to take all 4 of our older kids home with her in
addition to her own 4 kids. Our kids were thrilled! 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Mercy's 3rd Birthday

Our precious little Mercy turned 3 years old on Thursday, November 15, 2012. She had been talking about her birthday for weeks and telling us that her birthday was tomorrow. She was sooo excited about her birthday! Daniel took her to pre-school in the morning and they stopped at Wades grocery on the way to get Doughnut holes for her to share with her class. She was wearing a cute paper crown and was on cloud 9 when he brought her home. Since I was still not up to making a cake, Daniel was able to stop at Dairy Queen after work and get her this small ice cream cake. She was quite excited about it!
Nana was also staying with us and got to help Mercy celebrate her special day! 

Our precious little birthday girl! 
Licking her candles, YUM!

She was so excited about getting her present from us.

It was a set of brunette bitty twins that Mommy
found on ebay for her. 
Enjoying her present with big brother Isaac. Nana was also
there to share in her special day!
Pushing them around in Grace's bitty twin stroller!

I can't begin to describe just how precious you are. You are tiny and sweet as you can be. You have really found your voice this year and have become very outgoing. You have begun to realize that you are part of a big family and will make sure that you are heard. Your vocabulary is great and despite your small size, you are so very smart and mature for your age. You talk so good and have such a sweet voice. You are very obedient and play so well with your siblings for such a young girl! Your favorite color is currently purple and you play with dolls more than your other toys. You also spend quite a bit of time coloring, changing outfits and playing whatever your older siblings are playing. You love playing hide'n seek with them. You started sharing a room and sleeping in a bed with Grace this year. Your hair is very long for a girl your age and Mommy loves putting bows in it. You are such a good girl and everyone who meets you adores you, especially your pre-school teachers, Ms. Lisa and Ms. Jo. You are very babied at pre-school because of your small size and the older girls love leading you around and sometimes even toting you around:-).  You love to pray and do so everytime you get the opportunity. Your latest prayer is to pray for everyone you know to grow up and have a baby:-). Your Daddy and I are so proud of you and are so thankful that God gave us the gift of raising you! I love you with all my heart! Love, Mommy (or Mom as you often call me:-)