Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December 28/29

Sweigart Christmas...

We started the family celebration Tuesday evening...in fashion..with new MATCHING pajamas for everyone!! I didn't get the whole family picture on my camera, but I have a few of the clan :).

..and matching cousins Kade and Christian.

And we played some Wii..the Just Dance game that we brought over. It was quite entertaining, and funny to watch everyone participate.

And..we played other games too.

The next morning we had brunch and then started opening presents..stockings first. Christian sat so nice on his own big chair. There were LOTS of goodies to open!

We had a very LARGE meal for dinner..and then opened more presents. We all received wonderful things..but truly spending time with each other was just as special :)  

And...played some more Just Dance!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

December 26

Hershberger/Kilmer Christmas...

Ben's family and the Kilmer's (minus Angee :( ) joined us on Sunday for dinner at our house. We ate and then opened some presents and just spent time together. We were glad to have them all over.

 ~The boys (Phil, Sam, Ben, and Nate...Christian was taking a nap).

~Grandma H. and Christian looking at his new book from them

~My gift from Phil and Diana, a picture of Christian drawn by Phil...it is so special! (I should really have a picture of it outside the wrapping paper, but I don't.)

Our Christmas...

The three of us celebrated later in the evening. We opened stockings, and then a few other presents. Christian isn't the child that tears open the presents to see what's inside. He would rather climb on them, maybe tear a little off and point at the inside to have us just open it and get it out. Silly little boy. I'm thinking next year it will be different!

Giving Elmo a kiss.

His new BARN!-

Saturday, December 25, 2010

December 25

Christmas Day...

We went to Harper on Christmas Day to celebrate with the extended Hershberger family at Tim and Faith's house. We had a big, fancy meal...and then opened presents!

From there we drove back to Hesston...
David, Teresa and family (minus Camille and Russell) were in KS, so we got to see them. We got to meet Molly, who was just born in September. AND, we were able to get our blood pressure checked by Isaac (2 years old...and super cute!).

Isaac telling Christian ALL about the tractor book.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Merry Christmas.2010

Merry Christmas...from Ben, Jessica. and Christian.

 I'm not sure where to begin a reflection on this year. It almost feels like a blur..a good blur, but still a bit all jumbled together (probably a bit like this letter).

First things first is our little, growing boy Christian! We enjoy our no longer quiet home...there is always a little someone into "something" these days. Christian is becoming quite a little boy with his own personality. He turned ONE August 2. He started walking at 14 months..well more like he took his first steps around that time but has been running ever since! He sings and jabbers, and squawks (when he's being a stinker). He loves tractors, trucks and being outside! We are so grateful to have a healthy and happy little boy ...he is such a joy!

I didn't know this year would bring so much change...We (Ben) had done several landscaping projects to our home in Wichita this past spring/summer. It really made things look nicer...and then we came across a place in Hesston for sale. We weren't even really trying to move yet, but it all worked into place and we eventually got to move to our "new" home. Our family was a huge help in the transition between homes! We are still in the process of making our house our "home", but I think that just takes time. It's exciting to see the projects take place, one thing at a time. Along with the change in address, my change in jobs has been a smooth transition. Newton's maternal child is different from Wichita, but I REALLY like my schedule so that I am home more with Christian.  I am very thankful that my Mom and sister-in-law are willing to watch Christian on the days I do work. Now that Ben is now done with school, it'll bring a new change to what our schedules will do...but we will figure it out as it comes. I know we are both glad that he has graduated!

We took a several trips this year which were definitely memorable. In February, we went to Cancun with the Sweigart Family...which was a wonderful time on the beach! In May, we went to Iowa to visit our good friends,  the Brokaws and their newest member, Tessa. And then in June, we went to the Birky reunion in MN. OH, and the Sweigart girls went on their first ever Chication in October...which was so much fun!

We are grateful for what God has given, and look forward to what the future holds. I am reminded of those that have had a hard year for whatever reason. This is a difficult time of year to have struggles it seems. So I will keep them in my prayers and be grateful for all I have! So glad to have such good family and friends to celebrate this season of celebrating Jesus' birth with.


The Graduate

Ben completed his bachelor's degree at Wichita State University last weekend...he has gone from paying money to go to school, to getting paid to teach in school! I'm quite proud of him :) It seemed like this day was so far off, and now here it is!! Congratulations Ben, I love you.
 He has been offered a long term sub position through the end of the year at the school that he was student teaching at. He decided to decline this just because he wants to take advantage of trying out the different schools closer to home...and hopefully get a full time position in the fall. If nothing else, there are already daily openings for a substitute in the Wichita schools.

Our families came over after graduation for a supper/party!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Christian..our little BIG boy

Christian is 15+ months old now.
He weighed 22.7 lbs at his routine check up with his new pediatrician in Newton. That made him in the 22% for weight, but he was 74% for height. Oh well, either way the doctor said he was healthy and doing fine.

He got a new wagon with birthday money from Great Grandpa and Grandma Bergey. And oh boy, he thinks it's pretty fun to go on rides up and down our new road!

 He loves his cousins...
He loves to tickle Maddox and try get his attention.
He loves it when Ava talks and plays with him (I think the feelings are mutual).
And lastly Kade..since they are the closest in age, its funny to watch them together. Kade's like a big brother..he has so much fun showing Christian things..yet has a fun time giving him a hard time sometimes! 
They all love on him..and he loves them too! It's so nice to be able to see them often :)

 This light has been a 'focal' point for awhile while we were painting in the house, due to the lack of lighting at the time. Christian would try and climb up it and/or ride it often.

He climbs into pretty much anything he can manage to fit in. His dresser drawer, the toy bin, attempts to climb into the bathtub and up the entertainment center. He sits so cute on his little bench and taps his feet on the edge. He does very well with stairs (he's always went down backwards without much prompting).

 Happy little camper outside. He doesn't mind his hat and mittens now that its cold. In fact it was pretty funny when I had tried the mittens out on him in the house...he just walked around with just his shirt on and his mittens. I discovered it was wonderful...it couldn't pull the toilet paper off the roll, he couldn't quite grip the drawers to open them, etc.... Not to worry, I don't put them on him daily now..but it was pretty funny.

Things that he is saying and doing...
~says "ba-bye" and waves side to side...or says "hiiii" and waves to get your attention
~He makes the pig, dog, and monkey sounds...only the monkey is done with the correct name with accuracy.
~He LOVES making the monkey sound..pretty sure it was made this way because of his Daddy and Uncle Mitch being RIDICULOUS with their monkey impersonations. 
~He loves to pick up any cell phone and pretend like he's talking on it..follows it up with a "ba-bye" and repeats..as LONG as you let him have it. He will also try to do this using a remote control or any other electronic device. And anytime ANYBODY'S phone rings (in public as well) he usually puts his hand up to his ear and says "heyyo" 
~He likes to hear music still..has since he was a little baby. When he wants his music on..he points to the stereo and starts his own way of singing. He's a real big fan of the song "Matilda the Gorilla" at Grandma Sweigart's house.
~He loves bath time..usually Daddy gives him his bath and they splash and carry on.
~He loves tractors. He pushes them, saying "brrrrrmm". It's so funny how little boys just know this. He also recently got a "hand me down" indoor riding tractor from his cousins..he's a big fan!
~He likes to be his mama's shadow...watch me get ready, cook in the kitchen, take the trash out...he's just curious to see what it is I'm doing with my time I guess :)
~ He does very well in the mornings after I work "usually". I usually get home around 3:30-4 am..so I'm not exactly perky at 8:30..but I get him out of his crib and he will lie next to me in our bed for at least 30 minutes. He doesn't have a problem letting me know when he's done with that.
~He does alright with eating. Not the most gracious about trying just any kind of food (his Daddy hasn't taught him this yet I guess). But he loves his Yo-Baby yogurt, PB & J sandwiches, mini vanilla wafers, and cereal. He obviously eats more than just these things..but those are some of his favorites. I've discovered a good way to ration my eating is by eating next to him...he will eat almost anything that I'm trying to eat...I ordered a quesadilla for myself the other day..and he ate over half of it!
~He has gotten 3 more teeth within the last several weeks...making a total of 7 teeth. He still is gnawing on the sides of his mouth..so there are more to come!

Alright, that's enough now.
(I'm more writing this down for my own sake..since I'm lacking on making a book for him. That's on the long term "to-do" list. I know at least Ranee understands this :) )

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Papa's Pumpkin Patch

We went to Papa's Pumpkin Patch this October. A lady at work's family runs it, and I thought it sounded like the "thing you do". Christian wasn't exactly impressed. He didn't care one way or another..I think I had more fun than him. We walked around the patch, went on a hayrack ride, saw some fun kid activities (a bit too old for him), and then went down a BIG slide :)

Here are a few of the "for fun" pictures...

LOVE the outdoors!

Usually one sure bet if you want to make this little boy happy...you take him OUTSIDE! 
This fall we had beautiful weather that we could enjoy outside. 

At Grandma and Grandpa Sweigart's...

OH boy, does he LOVE tractors too! Big, small, inside or outside...he loves them!

He decided one day to try out the slide...it was also a hit :) He instinctively turned around on his own, and went down backwards. So there you have it..a master at the slide!

 In our new backyard...

Moved in...

We FINALLY moved!!
It got to be a bit of a hassle with the closing part of things...but bottom line is, we have our new house. We did about a weeks worth of work to it before moving in officially, and are continuing to do things now. We've been in a little over a month now. The most work gets done past 8:30 when Christian usually goes to bed :) 

Here are a few of the pictures during the first week or work...

We scraped off the popcorn ceiling. This actually worked out much smoother than we thought. I did most of the removing of the ceiling, and Ben did the patching/sanding and preparing it to be primed and painted.

Standing in the popcorn residue..in our bedroom.

There will be more/after photos after more of the "after" part is completed :) Everything but our bathroom is repainted. I think our next important step is getting new lights up! (I'm hoping we can recruit some help for this.)

Mom and Dad have been very gracious during this process..letting us live at their house not only one week..but one MONTH. And all their help with Christian (watching him so we can do some work!) has been very helpful too!!
We look forward to having all our family and friends over..we just need a bit more time for it to be a relaxing, enjoyable visit though!

Christian is adapting just fine..making himself at home!

Monday, October 4, 2010


Our first ever "chication"was held Oct 1-3 in Kansas City...and I'm hoping this can be an annual event :) We (Mom, Alyssa, Carissa, and I) had ourselves a weekend full of wonderful things. Friday afternoon, Mom, Alyssa and I drove up to KC and picked up Carissa from the airport, which was uneventful (and that in itself is worth noting, considering it was Carissa flying :) We took our things to the hotel..a nice hotel near the plaza, got our things settled, then took a shuttle van to eat at Jackstack BBQ. It was quite tasty. That evening we played games...but the most entertaining part of the evening was getting our (Carissa and my) pull out couch ready to sleep in. Mind you, this is a Hilton we're staying at, its not a hole in the wall cheap-o motel. Well, this couch sofa was just so bad, it was quite comical. The best way to describe it was like laying down on only springs, no mattressy part, just crunchy springs. So, we both tried it out, and it was just hilarious. I called down to the front desk, and told them we had a problem, I asked if we could just get two cots..they explained they couldn't have cots in the hotel..so I asked if we could have a new mattress for the sofa..they said they would bring more mattress pads. A bit later, this man that did not speak english brought a couple rinky dink sheet looking things. I said, "oh dear, here, come and feel the bed. You will see that it is not good." He looked at me funny, and reached to touch it and said "oh, I see"...but he didn't really see, I could tell that was as far as that conversation was going to go. So anyways, we put the extra "mattress pads" on, in addition to the comforter from Mom and Alyssa's bed, and the other extra bedding that was in the room, and snuggled in for a nice cozy night! :)

Saturday morning, we ate the full course continental breakfast and headed off to our spa treatment of an hour long masssage!!! This was quite the treat...thank you MOM! I think we all enjoyed it quite a bit. Ahhh. After that, we went down to the plaza and did some shopping and eating... then went out to a mall and did a bit more shopping..then came back to the plaza to do some more eating..at the Cheesecake Factory!

That night, we didn't have the energy to play games. However, we did have the energy to lay in the super comfy sofa bed and take lots of ridiculous pictures!!! That was probably the funniest part of the whole trip. Who knew that a digital camera could offer so much cheap entertainment? I guess for the purpose of this blog, it's not valid, because the pictures were taken on Mom's camera. It was funny though, just trust me. Mom had told the people at the front desk earlier in the day about our unfortunate mattress situation. Due to the full house they were having, the best they could do was give us a BUNCH of extra blankets to form a "mattress pad". It actually worked fairly well...it was quite the process, but it was much better than the spring crunch to the back. Ahhh..memories.
This is just a glimpse of the process of setting our bed up the second night...

Sunday, we ate the breakfast again at the hotel, and then headed off to get a pedicure at the mall. We did a little shopping there and then went to an outlet mall and did a bit more shopping there before our chication time came to an end. We took Carissa back to the airport :( and headed back home.

It was a very fun and memorable time together. I'm glad I have these lovely ladies in my family...and that they are ALL just as crazy if not MORE than me :)

AND...and a BIG THANK YOU to Mom for making this happen! Love you.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

How big is Christian??


He LOVES to do this....along with any other reason that gets people to clap for him, this is definitely the favorite though.

He's learning how to walk....

He knows how to tickle ( 'icka, icka, icka')

He climbs up and down the stairs.

He waves bye-bye appropriately now...and also just waves at a person if he's wanting to say hi I guess...but then he waves by putting his hand by his forehead (he's just silly I guess).

He loves to crawl around outside, especially on the deck.

He "reads" books to himself...and loves to be read to, right now his favorite is "Dimity Duck". We usually read that about 3 times through before he's ready to move on to the next one. 

He's much more creative with playing "peek a boo", and loves to talk through the stair banisters or his crib rails...it's pretty entertaining!

He is much more involved with bath time...SPLASHING!

When referring to the dog (at Mom and Dad's), he says "ggah" for go...I'm thinking he hears us tell the dog to "go" quite often.

He loves playing with the push/walk toys...he'll walk them until they run into a wall or obstacle, then walk to the back/front end of it while hanging on to it, and push it the opposite direction...back and forth :)

"bbbmmmbbbmmmm" goes any tractor...crazy how they learn this so fast, its not like we practice that kind of thing. He does like playing with tractors.
He's quite the mess....for real..very messy eater sometimes :)

We LOVE our growing boy!