Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas with the Holmans

Christmas in York was a blast. The kids had a fantastic time playing with their cousins. Hughes and Kate get along perfectly and are totally content playing side-by-side with each other. Banks tags along and occasionally found the need to shower baby Charlotte with kisses. Between playing Wii, chocolate martinis that tasted like chocolate milk, little children playing everywhere, their toys in every corner, a huge surprise of a Wii for us, and a quick shopping trip to the Pottery Barn outlet, the weekend was complete. I'm exhausted but we've had a few Pajama Days since then to recoop from the holiday craze. Oh, and my boys are in sugar detox!

Charlotte and Kate

David helping Banks open his Handy Manny toolkit.

Hughes checking out his Batmobile. Notice the racetrack in the background - thanks Uncle Bo. It has been a huge hit!

Construction Worker Banks - isn't he the cutest construction worker you've ever seen?

Banks bestowing love on Baby Charlotte.

David with Kate and Banks in his lap. Notice the pirate ship - thanks Aunt Deyna - we love it!

Kate and Banks

Future AU Football Player

Banks modeling his new football uniform complete with shoulder pads and chin strap. Hughes got one, too. Thanks BecBec and PopPop!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Morning 2009

This was our first year spending Christmas morning in our house and it was awesome! The boys got to sleep in their own beds and David and I got to relax after the boys went down in a quiet house. And when we woke up, Santa had come!

Hughes' Santa gifts

Banks' Santa gifts

The parking garage for both boys from Santa.

The stockings were packed full!

Coming down the stairs - not sure what we're going to see!

Wow! Look what Santa did! He wrapped the entrance to the den!

The first thing the boys did was check to see if the milk and cookies were gone. And, sure enough, Santa had eaten them. (I think our four-legged child also had some, too)

Hughes celebrating his loot.

The battles begin!

Banks loves the parking garage.

Hughes the Pirate

Hughes the Monster

Checking out the swords

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve we went to St. Michaels for their Christmas Pageant and then to the rectory for Christmas Eve with my side of the family. There were a ton of people there and somehow Elizabeth managed to get everyone in the dining room to eat. We had a great time and there was definitely excitement in the air.

children's wing of the table

adult wing

David helping the boys put together their remote control racecars. Check out the superhero cape I made for the boys. Banks and Hughes love them!

Proof that I was indeed there.

Kent, Trina, Bryce and Lucius

Last shot on Christmas Eve in front of our tree in their new Christmas pajamas.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas Around the House

We are ready for Christmas! The house is decorated, the presents are bought and wrapped, the family is arriving and there is still so much to see and do! We haven't made it to The Festival of Lights at James Island County Park, we haven't seen the Christmas train at Charleston Place, and the baking hasn't started!

We're doing Christmas at our house for the first time. I'm really excited to be able to start our family tradition of Christmas morning. It won't vary too much from what our families to already except for the fact that we will wake up in our house, in our den Santa will leave presents, and I will be responsible for a Christmas breakfast! What am I going to cook? Well, of course, shrimp 'n grits. I hear Santa likes that kind of cooking!

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care in hopes that St. Nick would soon be there.

I love my boys' stockings. I bought them two years ago and have an extra one waiting in the boxes.

Growing up, we always got a new ornament every year. I have continued that tradition with my own children. These are their ornaments this year. Hughes' ornament is the Buzz Lightyear/Wood ornament while BAnks' is the dinosaur from the movie. I bought these ornaments in Disney World during our vacation this past October. Their initials and year are written on the feet of the characters.

These are the ornaments I bought for us our first Christmas as a married couple. David loves fish and, well, I loved these. I still love them!

Jack the Elf has gotten really tricky in his hiding places lately. Right now, he's pretending to be in a jungle spying on the boys. Who knows where he's going to move to next?

I love those faces!

And, the Reason for the Season! It is my Christmas wish that all my friends would know and share the true meaning of Christmas with their fellow friends and family. My family has been blessed by so much this year. We have faced adversity and have been comforted during the hard times by the Father. I believe it is because of our relationship with God. Without his strength, his patience, his forgiveness, and his plan, I would be a lost sheep. Without the babe in the manger, there would be no holiday.

Have a very Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 18, 2009

New Family Nicknames

Hughes informed me just now that his name was no longer "Hu Holmn" but it is now "Nake Holmn". He has also given everyone in the family a new name. So, let me introduce our new names.

David shall now be called Worm Holman
AW shall now be called Spider Holman
Banks shall now be called Bat Holman

Hughes is quite a make-believer and loves to dress-up in costumes. This is just an extension of his great imagination.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Playgroup Christmas Party 2009

We had our neighborhood playdate Christmas party this morning. Lots of food, lots of juice boxes, lots of presents, lots of children which all equal lots of NOISE! We had caroling, instruments being played, solos being sung, words being made up to songs, and lots of FUN! Thanks Beth for hosting quite a merry party.

I have no idea what Hughes is doing in the picture above - look at his body position, it's nuts! Unfortunately, this was the best one of the boys so you can only imagine what my others looked like.

Group Shot - we keep growing every year!

Hughes definitely has something going on for Miller. He is always excited to see her. When playgrop started, it was Miller and 4 boys. So, I think, she may be all of their first loves.

Banks with cookie-icing green drool.

Crustbreakers 2009

This past weekend, David and I headed to York to go to the Centennial Celebration of Crustbreakers. Crustbreakers is a men's social group that David's dad belongs to. We had a great time and enjoyed getting to spend time with his family and friends.

While we were at the party, the kids were back at the house with a babysitter. Hughes and Kate played beautifully together while Banks tagged along and Charlotte slept. The funniest thing that happened was the older children got into some shampoo and decided to try to wash their hair without water. Banks got the most in his hair! There was no need for soap at bathtime that night!

On Sunday, we stopped by St. Matthews to visit with family that was in town from Texas. My cousin, Jeff, was graduating from USC and my mom had a big lunch in his honor. Later that day, we went to support mom in her handbell choir Christmas concert. The boys were perfect throughout the 30 minute concert and, I think, really enjoyed it. Of course, they liked the cookies even more!

Banks and Anna Banks

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas at the Aquarium

It's snowing at the aquarium! Well, artificially. Okay, Okay, more like foamy bubbles but it looks like snow falling! Hey, here in Charleston we'll take foamy-bubbles-made-to-look-like-snow when we can get it! What the boys don't know, won't hurt them!

Hughes and Conley waiting for the next burst of "snow" to fall.

And, here it comes! It must be innate because Hughes immediately opened his mouth and stuck out his tongue. Where did he learn that?

No fear from my oldest. He bravely stuck his hand in the "touch tank" and handled all kinds of sea creatures: sea stars, sea anemones, sea urchins, etc. Banks wanted to lift them out of the water so he quickly had to be diverted to another area.

Mrs. Sue, an aquarium volunteer, must have taken a liking to our boys. She was at the "touch tank" and then came downstairs with a boa constrictor for the boys to pet, left, and then returned with a 2-year old alligator for the boys to pet. We had our own personal animal handler.

Chandler, Suzie, and Conley

The three boys with the alligator and Mrs. Sue.

Hughes loved all the animals up close. He was not scared to touch any of them. Banks lost interest and playing in the penguin area.

My only decent shot of the boys together. You know how some children sit, post, and smile for the camera. Well, my children are the opposite of those children. My children see a camera and run the opposite way. So, I have to be stealth like in my picture-taking efforts. Hopefully one day my boys will turn the corner and I will have beautiful pictures of everyone looking at the camera and smiling at the same time! Until then, this is the best I can do!