Monday, November 29, 2010

The Tale of the Missing Snow Boot

This morning Mallory and Hayley wanted to wear their snow pants and snow boots to school because there was about 3 inches of snow outside. I told them that was fine and they got all dressed and Mallory could not find one of her snow boots. She had worn them over the weekend and she had left them by the front door. On Saturday, when we were cleaning up, I told Mallory to get her boots and go put them in her closet. Well, one boot made it to the closet but the other was no where to be found. We searched everywhere (as much as you can search when you only have 30 minutes before the carpool to school leaves)!!! We pulled everything out of the bottom of her closet to see if the boot had fallen out of her shoe basket, we dumped out the shoe basket numerous times, we search under the bed, behind the bed and in all her drawers. We searched in all the bedrooms and under the beds. We searched the hall closet, the kitchen and the family room. I even went so far to search in the Christmas decoration bins that we had emptied on Saturday and taken back downstairs. The boot was no where to be found!! I told Mallory that in her morning prayers before school that she could maybe ask Heavenly Father to help her find her boot. I sent a very sad little Mallory to school with her "dress up" boots on because we couldn't find the snow boot. I told Mallory, as she walked out the door, that I would bring her boot to school if I found it (I volunteer in her first grade class every Monday)

After I got Mallory and Hayley off to school, Brittney and I sat down for some breakfast (Mallory and Hayley get breakfast at school--sometimes they eat at home and at school but today they just wanted to eat at school). Brittney was just about ready to say the blessing on the food and I told her that maybe she could ask Heavenly Father to help us find Mallory's boot. Amazingly, Brittney remembered to ask for help in her prayer (along with saying "Help us to be safe" about 3-4 times!!). After the prayer was over, Brittney and I began to eat. I looked down into the family room and I saw the pile of blankets we leave down by the couch to keep us warm and which the girls use to build forts. I told Brittney, "I think I need to go check under the blankets downstairs" and I went down and moved each one--still no boot. As I was stacking the blankets again Brittney said, "Look behind the Love Sac, Mom". I walked over to the Love Sac (our big bean bag chair) and I looked behind it and guess what I saw??? Yep, there was the boot just sitting there!!! Brittney and I were both so excited!! I had Brittney kneel down with me to say another prayer to thank Heavenly Father for helping us find the boot. After the prayer was done, I asked Brittney, "Do you know who helped us find the boot?". Brittney said, "Yes, Heavenly Father did!" I took a little moment to talk to Brittney about how Heavenly Father sent the Holy Ghost to help her know where the boot was. The Holy Ghost told her to tell me to look behind the Love Sac!! Brittney was so excited!!!

This was our little miracle that happened today!! I know little miracles happen all around us each and every day!! I really need to take more time daily to recognize these little miracles--both for myself and for my little girls!! I need to remember to sit down and record these little miracles too!! These little miracles will help build my little girls' faith and also their testimonies!! They are going to need to be sooo strong in the coming years!!
I really need to take time daily to help my girls to feel the Holy Ghost and then help them to RECOGNIZE the Holy Ghost and what it feels like!! I am so glad for this little experience this morning!!! One thing I noticed was that the house was more calm and quiet after Mallory and Hayley left for school (mornings are always crazy as we are all trying to get dressed, hair done, teeth brushed, etc.) --it was an easier time to feel and recognize the Holy Ghost!!

A few months ago I was reading the Church News. I was reading an article and a quote a mother said really made an impression on me. She said, "We as parents need to make opportunities for our kids to feel the spirit every day." I have thought a lot about that and I know it is important. want to add to it to say, "We as parents need to make opportunities for our kids to feel AND RECOGNIZE the spirit every day."

Saturday, November 27, 2010

All Wrapped Up

We have one of our favorite family Christmas Traditions all ready to go!!! I wrapped 32 of our favorite Christmas books to place under the tree. Each night, we choose a book to read before we go to bed (I know there are less than 32 days until Christmas but I had to wrap all 32 of these books--I have about 25 others I didn't wrap--maybe I have too many Christmas books:)). Mallory, Hayley and Brittney love it!! They can't wait until it is their turn to choose a book!!

Here is a list of our favorite books we have wrapped under the Christmas tree:

I Believe in Santa by Diane Adamson
Christmas Oranges by Linda Bethers
Franklin's Christmas Gift by Paulette Bourgeois
Christmas Trolls by Jan Brett
The Night Before Christmas by Jan Brett
The Twelve Days of Christmas by Jan Brett
The Wild Christmas Reindeer by Jan Brett
Who's that Knocking on Christmas Eve? by Jan Brett
Who Was Born this Special Night? by Eve Bunting
Dream Snow by Eric Carle
King of the Stable by Melody Carlson
This is the Season Beloved of the Year by Simon Dewey
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
The Christmas Candle by Richard Paul Evans
Wombat Divine by Mem Fox
The Stable Where Jesus Was Born by Rhonda Gowler Greene
The Legend of the Christmas Rose by William Hooks
The Tale of Three Trees by Angela Elwell Hunt
Froggy's Best Christmas by Jonathan Londen
The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado
A Child Was Born by Grace Maccarone
Come and See: A Christmas Story by Monica Mayper
Santa's Book of Names by David McPhail
The Christmas Star by Marcus Pfister
Sarah's Christmas Star by Kit Poole
Cookie Count by Robert Sabuda
The 12 Days of Christmas by Robert Sabuda
The Remarkable Christmas of the Cobbler's Sons by Ruth Sawyer
The Christmas Pea Coat by Richard Schneider
The Littlest Angel by Charles Tazewell
The Polar Express by Chris VanAllsburg
Small One by Alex Walsh
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski

Christmas Decorating

According to Mallory, Hayley and Brittney--WE FINALLY GOT OUR CHRISTMAS TREE UP!!! We finally took the plunge and bought an artificial tree--a prelit one even (Christmas lights and I do not get along very well so I was very excited for the pre-lit tree)!! Scott and I sat and watched the girls decorate the tree. They had a blast!! It took Brittney about 2-3 minutes just to hang one ornament but she was so excited when it didn't fall off the tree. The girls started getting really silly as they laid down under the tree to hang the ornaments down low. After all the ornaments were hung, the girls began making their own snowflakes to hang on the tree too! We definitely have a "Kid Tree"--it is very ornament heavy near the bottom!

The girls have been sooo excited for Christmas this year!! I had to remind myself that I was once a little girl too and I was always very excited for Christmas. The girls set up our Little People Nativity Set (we have the whole set now, which we absolutely love--the girls can arrange and rearrange it to their hearts content and I don't have to worry about it) in the windowsill and they each got to choose a few decorations to put in their bedrooms!!
Princess Hayley (Mallory and Hayley went to a Princess Birthday Party earlier today)

Princess Mallory

Hayley trying to decorate the underside of the tree!!!

Brittney (Brittney dressed herself this morning--she thinks it's summertime outside --it's a cold 20 degrees outside--FREEZING!)

Brittney trying to hang an ornament

Mallory hanging a few under the tree

The Ropelato household is ready for Christmas!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Scott's brother Jerry and his wife, Darinda, hosted Thanksgiving this year at their home in Huntsville. Everything was delicious!! Mallory, Hayley and Brittney got to sit at the little kid tables along with their cousins in Princess chairs. They were in Heaven!! Scott and I sat at the bar--right in front of the turkey and mashed potatoes!! We didn't even have to stand up to get seconds! They were the best seats in the house (well, maybe Larry and Dawn had the best seats because they were at the bar right in front of all the yummy pies)!! We had wonderful food and great company!! It was so nice to sit around and visit with Scott's family!! We don't see each other near enough, in my opinion!

Mallory, Hayley and Brittney love playing at Aunt Darinda's house! She has the biggest and best collection of dress up clothes!! All the girls would go upstairs and get all dressed up, then they would come downstairs and parade through the dining room and kitchen and head back upstairs to change into a new outfit. They came through at least 4 times and we never saw an outfit twice!!

There is so much to be grateful for at this time of year! I am so grateful for the knowledge I have of a loving Heavenly Father and for my Savior, Jesus Christ. I am so grateful for a husband who loves me despite my weaknesses and shortcoming. I am so grateful for Scott's perfectionisms and for the hard worker he is. He is the best father to our three little girls and a wonderful husband!! I am so grateful for my little girls--they are so loving and good. They are so thoughtful and forgiving. They remind me daily of our Heavenly Father's great love for all of His children!!

What a wonderful day!!

Scott teasing his niece, Shannon--isn't that what uncles do best!!

Jocelyn, Mallory and McKell (with her back to us)

Kaitlin, Lexi, Hayley and Brittney

Grandma Donna and Mallory

Scott and Mallory

Scott and I (this is the only picture me--Thanks for taking it Dawn--I have food in my mouth but it's proof I am here;))


Lexi, Hayley and Brittney

Lexi (the little one in black), Jasmin, Jocelyn (hiding in the back), McKell, Mallory, Hayley and Brittney pausing for a photo shoot during one of their Costume Parades!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The First Big Snow of the Year!!

Mallory, Hayley and Brittney were so excited to go play in the first big snow of the season! We had to drag out the snow pants, boots, gloves and hats and get them all bundled up to go outside! They marched outside in a single file line and went out where they could make snow angels. They jumped and slid all over the trampoline! Brittney was outside a total of about 4 minutes before she came in crying because she had fallen in the snow and her mitten had fallen off--she was done for the day and didn't want to go out again. Mallory and Hayley went and found some friends to play with and they ended up staying outside for about an hour!! They never did get the hot chocolate they asked for--ooops!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hayley's Thanksgiving Feast in Kindergarten

Hayley's Kindergarten Class had their Thanksgiving Feast at school today. I was so lucky to go and eat turkey, mashed potatoes, rolls and a pumpkin cookie with my little Native American!! Hayley was so excited to eat lunch at school and I am so glad she was excited to have her mom join her!! I had a wonderful time just with Hayley!
I love you Hayley!!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloween 2010

Halloween was pretty laid back this year since we celebrated it on Saturday. The girls only had to dress up once (Mallory and Hayley's school doesn't celebrate Halloween at school) which was sooo nice!!

First, we had a Ward Halloween dinner at 4:00 p.m. with Soups, Chili's and Rolls. There were a lot of people there which was great. After we ate, they had a Children's Parade and we were done (no Trunk or Treat this year!!!).

Then we came home and had the girls WAIT until the first Trick or Treaters came to our door!! They were impatient little souls because they were asking every two seconds if they could leave. Finally, after our doorbell rang for the first time, Scott took the girls out!! Mallory and Hayley could have been trick or treating forever but Brittney got tired really quick. Scott took them around the two main blocks in our neighborhood and they all came in with plenty of candy.

After they got home, they all dumped out their stashes and sat there and sorted and traded with one another (just like I used to do when I was a little girl).

Mallory (a Ballerina), Brittney (a Good Little Witch) and Hayley (a leopard)

You can't see me!!!

An Orange Pumpkin Head Leopard

I drew Hayley's nose upside down--oops!!

Brittney and her friend Alyssa at the Ward Halloween Dinner

Ella, Alyssa and Brittney

Hayley, Mallory and Brittney

Mallory and her balloon bracelet made by Becky Bateman in our ward--she made a balloon creation for all the kids as they came to her house--she is talented!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

A Big Surprise!!

A big box arrived on our front porch the other day!! I looked at it and there was no return address. I knew I hadn't ordered anything in the last few days and I had no idea where this box had come from and I began to wonder if I should open it. I studied the box for another minute and then I saw the postal stamp of where it had been postmarked. It said, "Manheim, PA"--oh, it was from Scott's sister in Pennsylvania. She had called several months ago wondering if we wanted any of Taylor's clothes she had grown out of. We received a box of lot of clothes!! Mallory and Hayley were both so excited!! There were a lot of shirts and shorts (which I put away for next summer) that both Mallory and Hayley can were and lots of socks. Brittney was a little disappointed because nothing was her size. Mallory gave her a few pairs of ankle socks with bows on the back!! Brittney was in heaven!!! She wears the socks all the time with the heel of her socks up on her calves!! She loves them!!

Mallory and Hayley were so excited to wear some of Taylor's old clothes to school--they don't look old to me!!


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Black Island Farms

Brittney and I went with a few friends in our neighborhood to Black Island Farms today! Brittney loved being able to go somewhere just with Mom (she always runs errands and goes shopping with me by herself but this was a FUN thing to do alone with Mom)!!

My good friend Dallas organized the Little Preschool Group (so we could get a nice discount) we went with. First, we met up with Dallas, Deakin, Scotlyn, Brittany, Taigen, Amy, Arim and lots of Dallas' friends and their little kids. We went on the tractor ride first out to the Pumpkin Patch were Brittney was able to find her very own pumpkin--she had a hard time deciding but she finally ended up with a little pumpkin she could carry all by herself.

After the tractor ride, we went and looked at the calves, pigs, sheep, peacocks, turkeys, llamas, and goats. Brittney did not want to get close to the fences at all!! She is so funny around animals!!

Next, we went down the huge slides. Brittney was having a hard time climbing up the very first slide so I went behind her to help her up. Brittney sat on my lap and we rode down the slide together--I'm getting a little old to do this but it was fun. After going down the big slide once, Brittney ran to the shorter slides that she was able to do all by herself. Brittney rode on the Cow Train and jumped in the Huge Pumpkin. Brittney and I had a great time together!! Before we left, we bought a pumpkin for Mallory and Hayley and several other small gourds and pumpkins to add to our Fall Sensory Bin we made.

You can tell how much fun Brittney had just by the expressions on her face!! I am so glad I was able to capture this on film!!