Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Randy's Birthday

Randy asked for one thing for his birthday: to see Rogue One. So I arranged for the boys to play at Laurie's house and Randy and I went to see the new Star Wars movie. We went out to lunch at Tucanos after the movie because if there is one food that Randy loves, it is a lot of meat. We had a great time eating and talking. We always love going on dates together.

Randy loves his meat. 
I am always laughing because I cannot take selfies.
Once we got home, Randy seemed a little tired, so we let him take a "little" two hour nap. Randy and I never wanted to eat again after our huge lunch, so I made dinner for the boys, and afterward we opened presents. Grandpa Ockey stopped by to wish Randy a happy birthday, but didn't stay long as he was heading up back to Sandy's house. 
Randy got 3 new puzzles from the boys.
He was super excited about his new Red Sox tie from my sister. 

Randy wanted a trifle, but he also said he didn't want a trifle because we can never eat it all. So I made mini trifles in glass cups. They turned out super delicious! Dax played, "Happy Birthday" on the piano so we could sing to Dad for his birthday. And we rounded out the day by playing Dad's new game Dungeon. 

Randy let me take a bunch of pictures, so here's number one: really? pictures?!
And isn't that cup trifle awesome?
Number two: Ok, I'll pose. Now put the camera away!
Number 3: getting sick of the pictures. 
Number 4: dramatic breath for the children!
Number 5: He's getting so old, we only gave him one candle so he wouldn't get winded! Ha ha!
We love our Dad. He is the best one around. He always makes time for each of the boys, and he is such a great example of service and love. We think he is the greatest!

Christmas 2016

Christmas began on December 22 when Grandma and Grandpa Daniels trekked down from Idaho to visit with us. They brought a huge present this year, kayaks! Our boys were thrilled. This year at Bear Lake, Stephanie brought two kid kayaks and all of the kids were hooked. They took turns paddling all over the lake, so Grandpa Daniels decided to buy kayaks for everyone. They were definitely a hit!
Dax's reaction is priceless!
The boys can't wait to use the kayaks!
Seth asked Grandpa Daniels for a drum set a few months ago. Well, he never forgot and he brought Seth his own drum set. Seth was so happy! He loves it! Who knows how long Mom and Dad will love it.
LOVES his drums!
Christmas Eve was a wonderful day. We made gingerbread houses and gingerbread men. We did puzzles and read books. We watched movies and played games. It was a nice relaxing day together as we prepared for Christmas.
We were excited for this new Christmas puzzle from Grandma.
Dax read books by the fireplace for a few hours. 
Lots of gingerbread cookies for Santa.
In the evening, we read and sang about the birth of Jesus Christ. And we opened our traditional Christmas Eve gift of new pajamas. We also took a little drive over to Loch Lomond to watch our favorite Christmas lights.
They are ready for Santa to come!
The boys were very good and they didn't wake us up until 6:30. We opened Santa presents and stockings, then had a yummy breakfast before getting ready for church. The boys all got remote controlled vehicles and they have loved driving or flying them all over the house.
They were so cute coming down the stairs. I had to take a picture.
Dax got a really fast remote controlled car. 
Seth also wanted a remote control car. This one has been just right for his driving skills!
Mark got a drone. He says it is the best present EVER!
He crashed a lot the first day, but he has definitely improved after a few days of practice.
Christmas fell on Sunday this year which meant we were able to go to church on Christmas. I loved that we could really focus on the Savior's birth by going to Sacrament meeting. The boys got to wear their new suits from Grandma & Grandpa.
After church, we had visitors. First, Laurie and her family came to see us. They were so generous with presents, and we were glad to see them. Seth was thrilled with the remote control helicopter he got from them, but he was the only one that could fly it. Later Grandpa Ockey came and opened presents with us. The boys were really excited for the games from Grandpa, too.
Seth LOVES this helicopter. 
A bunch of Ockey boys!
We just hung around together and didn't do much until dinner. Mom made Dax's turkey that he won at school and we did our traditional big Christmas Dinner. After dinner, Seth got a bit of a fever, so he and Mom watched movies while Dax and Mark played some of their new games.
We love getting out the fancy dishes for Christmas. We need more reasons to get them out.
The boys were great gift givers and receivers this year. They loved all of their gifts, but Mark said his favorite was his new drone although he is still learning to fly it without crashing. Dax said he loved his two remote controlled cars and his big Hershey's bar. Seth said he loved his helicopter and his drum set. All three boys said they were excited to get their own Camelbak water packs to take hiking. Seth even said he was ready for a hike today.
The Camelbaks were a hit. I hope it helps them love hiking even more, but I don't know if that's possible.
Mom's favorite part of Christmas is always the part we like to call Dax's Christmas. Every year Dax makes presents for everyone based on what they like and what he knows about them. It is so endearing and Dax is so thoughtful. This year he made tons of presents, most of which Mom had no idea about. Well, his little Christmas gift making rubbed off on Seth and he made a few gifts of his own this year. I hope it is a tradition that continues forever.
Seth saved up his money so he could Dad some new guitar picks.
Dax made me a new piano book. It's so adorable.
Dax made seth a Sherriff's badge because Seth loves policemen.
Dax made Randy a Yellowstone puzzle. It was a toughie!
Mark and Seth made Dax his own computer. 
It was a perfect Christmas!

Saturday, December 24, 2016


Every year we make ornaments with Laurie and her family. It is one of the best traditions that we have because every year when we decorate the tree we pull out our boxes of homemade ornaments and admire all of our handiwork. The boys love remembering what they have made in past years and we love talking about which ornaments are our favorites and which ones were fun to make.

We love pulling out our homemade ornaments every year.
There are so many after 14 years of making ornaments.

This year we used clothespin ornaments. We took the clothespins apart and then we arranged them in all sorts of different shapes to look like snowflakes. Then we painted them and added glitter and decorations. This was one of our favorite ornaments because we love the way they look on the tree. It was also fun for the kids to create their own designs. Dax made the best one because he thought outside of the box and created a star. We loved the way his looked and voted it the best one (even though everyone's turned out great). It's fun to sit around the table talking together and making new ornaments. We are so glad that we have this tradition to look forward to every year.

Dax's awesome star ornament! 
Mom's job was to get all the ornaments to the car without letting them touch while they were still drying.
She made it!
They look really beautiful on the tree. 

Gingerbread Houses

Every Christmas Eve we make gingerbread houses. The frosting "glue" was mom's best batch and so the houses turned out pretty amazing. We ate a lot of candy while making the gingerbread houses, of course! Here are our masterpieces this year:

Here we go...Dad is already mostly built and Mark hasn't even begun!
Gingerbread houses are a fun tradition that I mostly love!
Seth told Dad to build the temple and then he would decorate it. 
Dad and Seth's temple with Moroni on top.
Mom tried something different and made a star this year. 
Mark built a large house this year and ate more candy than he put on the house. 
Dax made our family and he also made our light post, so I think this is our house. 

Seth's Preschool Christmas Program

Seth really wanted to wear his Santa hat for the program. Miss Tina approved!

Seth has an adorable little preschool program for Christmas this week. Seriously, it is so cute watching these little 3 and 4 year olds sing their hearts out. Seth was amazing. He was center stage so we were able to keep a good eye on him. Seth said all his lines and sang all the songs perfectly. He wasn't nervous one bit. He even opened the whole program with the very first line. We were so proud of him.

My favorite part was when they recite the snowman poem. I remember this poem from when Dax was in Miss Tina's preschool, and I love how they crunch the carrot at the end. Well, this year Miss Tina had really stepped it up and had a whole outfit for them to wear which made it even cuter.
Seth makes a cute little snowman.
Seth told me that he was most excited about Jingle Bells because they got to hide the bells for the first part of the song. You just have to watch the video to see how much fun we had watching him. 
Seth is growing up so fast.

Christmas Fun

We had a whole bunch of December adventures that are worth remembering! Here are a few of our favorites!

Snowman Building: Mom fails every year at building snowmen, but Seth didn't mind. We had a lot of fun building a little snowman in our front yard. Dax wins at building snowmen because he is so creative. He made a football player this year.
Our little snowman friend!
Seth likes to attack mom with snowballs.
Dax created this football player snowman. I love it!
We were able to go up to Temple Square and see the lights. We actually spent the whole afternoon up in SLC. We started at the Planetarium, went to see the Holiday Windows at the Grand America, watched the City Creek Fountain, and then went to the lights at Temple Square. We also ran into the Webbs while we were there.
It's always beautiful up near the temple.
Mom loved this tree.
When did Mark get so grown-up? 
We took a great family picture!
The whole gang together.
We got free tickets to attend Candlelight Christmas at This is the Place Heritage Park. We had a lot of fun and we didn't even make it to all the activities going on. This was the first time this year that the boys saw Santa, also known as Father Christmas.
We LOVE the donuts here. Mmmm!
We went on a wagon ride which was a lot of fun.
Seth wasn't quite sure about Santa.
Dax was excited to see Father Christmas.
Santa was checking Mark for any mischief in his eyes. 
The week before Christmas kicked off with the Ockey Christmas party. We headed up to South Jordan and made our annual stop at the Candy Windows. There were only about half as many, but we had fun looking at the windows before heading to Sandy's house for the party. We had a great time at the party. There was a delicious dinner, Santa visit, an awesome Family Tree craft, and of course, egg nog ice cream. We love seeing our family at Christmas time.
We love the grinch!
Mark figured out that Santa was actually his uncle Carl this year.
Dax loves telling Santa his list.
Seth was a little more comfortable with Santa this time.
This is the Family Tree that we made.
Tiffany and Stephanie came to visit a few days before Christmas. Katelynn's birthday is the 21st, so we had a big birthday party with all the grandkids. It was crazy and fun all at the same time.
All 13 grandkids on the Daniels side.
Mom got to help at Mark's Christmas Party, which was also Dad's Christmas party. The most popular game at the party was Face Off which was a different version of Pie Face. Mark faced off with his two buddies a few times. Then Mr. O even got roped into participating. It was really fun to watch.
Mark vs. Davis
Oh no, Mark! It's not looking good.
Mark did not win this round.
Dad beat Jack pretty quickly.
Every year we make a bunch of Sugar Cookies. The boys love this tradition and as they get a little older, mom likes it more and more. 
We made way too many cookies.
We like eating the cookies lots more than baking them.
Dax built this amazing nativity our of the Duplo blocks. There is an angel over baby Jesus, as well as shepherds, wise men, Mary and Joseph.
Seth wanted to be in the picture, too.
Our neighborhood has a little Christmas get together every year, and Santa stopped in for a visit. We took a family picture with Santa on our 3rd time seeing Santa! We had lots of fun before Christmas.

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