My kids woke up at a normal time (I'm sooooo glad I don't have kids that wake up at 5am on Christmas morning!) and my mom and dad were already waiting in the living room with cameras in hand! They love Christmas with the grand kids! Porter was excited Santa got him a camera so he wouldn't have to sneak momma's to take pictures:)
He was also super excited about his skate board!
Hudson saw the Transformer toy that he had been asking for, and then he didn't even pay attention to anything else that Santa brought him!
Baby's First Christmas!
He sure thought all of this was fun!
Including eating a candy cane!
After things settled down a bit, Porter noticed a note and picture with all of his stuff. Santa wrote him a letter to tell him that he left a trampoline at our house in Oregon!!! Santa also left pictures and notes for me and Brandon. Santa left garage shelves and a Cricut Imagine for Brandon and I!
Since Christmas was on Sunday, we spent the morning exploring and playing with all the things that Santa brought. When we got home from church, we got busy opening presents!
I didn't get a picture, but one of Brandon's gifts to me were tickets to Wicked! I have an awesome hubby! And I can't wait for March!!!
After all of the present opening, this is how I found Hudson... that Transformer still in hand:)
We had an awesome Christmas and everyone felt pretty spoiled!
When we got home from the Polar Express, it was time to do the rest of our Christmas Eve festivities so the kiddos could get to bed. It was a fun, relaxing night. My Dad read Luke 2 while Porter and Hudson used the Nativity characters to act out the Christmas Story.
Then they got to open a present, which is always jammies. These boys were so excited to see Scooby Doo jammies!
My brother Daniel got all of my other brothers a present to open on Christmas Eve, also... but it wasn't jammies;)
My boys set out cookies and milk for Santa and carrots for his reindeer.
Then off to bed for my little munchkins. We had a very busy, very long day with the Polar Express and everything else we did, so we got them in bed early. I even heard Porter say "I need to go to bed and get to sleep!" He was soooo excited for Santa to come & he knew he only comes when everyone is asleep. Santa sure did come! It didn't take too long to get everything out and set up so Santa & Mrs. Clause went to bed early also!
On Christmas Eve, Grandma & Grandpa took the boys on the Polar Express... and Brandon & I got to tag along, too!
My dad got better pics, but I haven't gotten them yet, so I will post them later. It was such a fun day! We rode to the North Pole, where Santa was waiting to get on the train. Each child got to talk to Santa and he gave them a bell. We also got to sip hot chocolate and eat cookies. My boys LOVED it! I would highly recommend taking a ride on the Polar Express! (Whether in Utah or Oregon, you still get to the North Pole:)
This year we drove to Utah for Christmas to be with my family. The kids were great the whole time, there and back! On our trip there, we stayed the night in Eagle, ID (close to Boise) with one of Brandon's friends. It was nice to have the trip broken up. On the way home, we drove straight through and it was nice to be home in one day. Either way, it is a looong drive with kids!
Porter and Hudson entertained themselves with presents they got to open periodically throughout the trip and lots and lots of movies.
Brody wasn't interested in the movies, so he had to entertain himself other ways... including putting his foot in his bottle! Silly baby:)
I signed up Porter & Hudson for swim lessons as soon as Hudson turned three. He does so well by the end of Summer, but by the next summer, he is back to being scared to even get in the water. So I decided swim lessons this winter and then again in the spring will be just the trick! We ended up getting private lessons, too, because of a mix up, which I wasn't going to complain about! Their teacher was awesome!
Porter did well from the start! Swimming from platform to platform,
swimming from Teacher Sharon to the wall,
Jumping and diving in!
Hudson, no surprise started not even wanting to get into the water. (I honestly don't know why my kids have been so scared of water. I grew up in a pool & was swimming before I was two!) Most of the lessons, he clung to Sharon like this...
But she had so much patience and by the end he was doing so so so much better. I'm hoping this spring we will start from where we left off & not from the very beginning again!
*I have soooooo much to post, ya know with Christmas happening & all, but I lost one of my camera cords that I need to download pics to the computer (so annoying, grrrrrr!) so posting more will have to wait until I get another one. Stay tuned!
Here's a few random pics that show a day in the life of the Hoopes'.
Porter does quiet time in the play room while my other boys nap. He keeps himself busy doing who knows what! The only rule is that he has to be quiet. This day, I had the tent out for preschool and he turned it into a fort. He must have gotten tired from all of the hard work he did, because he fell asleep like this with his feet sticking out of the tent!
Speaking of being tired, when I give the boys a bath, I get Brody out first, get his jammies on and then put him in the jumparoo so I can take care of the other boys. This is how I found him one night... It's tiring work being a baby!
My house has little messes all over it now. I can tell where Brody has been by the trail he leaves. All the magnets pulled off the fridge, all the numbers pulled off the preschool calendar, the preschool garbage dumped over, all the kleenex pulled out of the box, etc... I LOVE these little messes, though! It is so fun having a busy-body baby in our house! We love you, Brody!
Porter & Hudson found the perfect hiding spot for hide-n-seek. They LOVE playing hide-n-seek with Daddy after work!
Rub-a-dub-dub. 3 little boys in a tub! These three LOVE bath time!
Early Sunday morning, Brandon's dad passed away. I am sad that my kids, especially Brody, won't get to know their Grandpa, but I am so happy for the knowledge I have that he has been reunited with loved ones, including Steven, his grandson that passed away 10 years ago from a brain tumor. And all of us will once again be together because of the ultimate sacrifice Christ made for us. Reese will be missed by all.
Thanksgiving weekend fun continued on Black Friday (and no, we weren't shopping! Brandon & I did ALL of our Black Friday shopping Thursday night and only went to one store! I LOVE that Walmart price matches! We left our house at 9pm and were back with everything we needed by 11pm! Love it!) Anyways... we decided to go to an Oregon State wrestling meet. It was a lot of fun for the boys... and me. It reminded me of the good ole days before kids when Brandon coached wrestling and I would go to all of his meets.
Brandon can't wait for next year because Porter will be old enough to join a wrestling club... and Porter's excited, too!
On Saturday we took Porter & Hudson to Arthur Christmas. It was a cute movie, but we will probably wait awhile longer to take Hudson back to the theaters. He had a hard time sitting still. I'm glad there were only a few other people there!
Thanksgiving weekend was so fun & we had a great time doing activities together as a family!
In a nut shell, we met at Ricks College, dated for 4 months, got engaged, and less than a year after we met, we were married. We both finished our schooling at Ricks and then Weber State. Brandon went on to the U of U. 51/2 years after being married we had our Porter and 21 months after that, we had our Hudson. In less than two years we doubled our family. We now have added another little boy, Brody, to our growing family. We live in Portland, Oregon where Brandon enjoys going to work and I enjoy staying at home with the boys.