Thursday, December 21, 2017

Piles of Pillows

It's been established in blog posts of yesteryear that we, the Hambly Fambly, love pillow piles. Recently, we've rekindled our pillow love! First, Lila and I spent an enjoyable morning pillow piling. She was cracking herself up while jumping in and jumped over and over and over...

Then, on a Sunday a few weeks later, we decided to spend our morning with a pillow pile. We started with our normal layout, but then got crazy. By the end of our piling, we had every pillow and couch cushion in the house! The pile was super cozy.

We started with our normal runs and leaps. Then Ryan suggested we bury him in the pile, then jump on him. The kids were right on board with this idea and it was hilarious. The resulting pile was taller than they were! After they'd unburied him, he tossed each of them in turn into the pile.

There's nothing like a restful Sabbath :)


We will be spending our Christmas in California this year, so we decided to have pre-Christmas with our gifts from Grandma Lexie and Grandpa Jack! Originally, they were going to try to come down to Vegas to have a little celebration with us--but between both of our busy schedules, that didn't work out. They were with us in spirit :)

The first thing we opened were everyone's Christmas PJs. This is a tradition I really love! The fabric this year is super cute and so soft. The kids immediately pulled on their new jammies before opening their other presents. G + G gave Reed a lego set he's had his eye on for a while--it has a robber pulling a huge vault with a tow truck and two police motorcycles--and a new game called Suspicion. Asher got a lego 3-in-1 that builds 3 different dinosaurs and a spy code cracking game. And Lila got paw patrol cars, a peppa set, and the star of the night: PIE FACE. As soon as she opened Pie Face, all three kids yelled, "PIE FACE!!!!!!" in unison. It was so cute to see how excited they were!

We also opened cousin presents and sibling presents. Asher had Reed this year and really wanted to buy a Lego Brickhead for Reed. We found an awesome Batman one that cost $8. Our budget was $7 but Asher thought Bub would love it so much that it was worth spending the extra $1. I should mention that all 8 dollars were his own money and he had no hesitation about spending extra to get Bub something he'd really love! Awwwww. We wrapped the Brick Head in four different boxes, ending with an absolutely gigantic box. It was so funny to watch Reed open the gift! When he got to the second to last box he said, "Another box?! Really?" Hahaha. Lila had Asher. She got him a new rocket to build and engines to go with it. She knew how Asher had wrapped Reed's present and wanted to wrap hers the same way. I thought it might be funnier to have a different trick, so we actually wrapped up a tiny box with one candy cane in it. Asher opened the box and said, " candy cane?" He really believed it was his present for a minute! Then Lila directed him to his REAL present. He was pumped on the rocket. Reed had Lila. A few months ago we saw brand new puzzles at a garage sale. She bought one for herself because that's all the money she had to spend, but really wanted all three. Reed sneakily bought the other two. Then he bought her the gumball machine she's been pining after at Wal-Mart. When she opened the gumball machine she said, "Oh I have been dreaming of this! I have been wishing for it with every wish!!!" She gave Reed a huge hug. She's been eating a lot of gum since :) 

After the present opening, we tried out Reed's new game. It is a really fun strategy game that I am already looking forward to playing again. Then came the main even: Pie Face. I knew Lila would be opening Pie Face that night so was prepared with whipped cream. The kids were so excited and the game ended up being so hilarious. We had so much fun! Merry Pre-Christmas!


We have three traditional Family Home Evening activities we do every December. The first Monday is ALWAYS Lego nativities. This activity comes first because the kids can't wait any longer than the first Monday of December to make Lego nativities. It's one of their favorite activities. This year I was (as always) impressed by the building, but also impressed by how much they all three knew about the birth of Christ. I love when they surprise me in good ways.

The other two FHEs vary in order but they both must happen. One is Hannukah FHE, where we learn about Hanukkah and play dreidel. Dreidel is always a big hit and the kids love our wooden menorah. This year they did put in a request to get a real menorah for next year with real candles we can light. We'll see, kids.

And our final activity is graham cracker houses. We discovered graham cracker houses a few years ago and it was love at first build. Last year I think we made houses on three separate occasions. This year we've only made houses once, but we made them with friends! We invited The Gourlies over because we really love the Gourlies and I think they really love us, too. Not only are our kids friends, Ryan and I are friends with Carolyn and Russell, too. Yay friendship.

Anyway, we have 7 kids between the two of us, and Reed is the oldest--so as you can probably imagine, our night was a little loud and a lot messy! I pre-built houses for Lila, Cam (age 2), Lila Jane (age 5), and Avery (age 5). We let our boys and Ty (age 7) build their own. The littler kids had a good ol' time decorating. Lila Jane even added ice cream cone Maleficent horns to her house. And Cam filled his entire house with treats, haha! Lila Jae and Avery both worked on their own--no assistance needed. The big boys had a fun time coming up with their own designs. Asher's looked like a yurt with its cool hexagonal shape. Reed was inspired by Russell's outhouse and designed his own little outhouse with lifesaver mint potty and gummy bear occupant next to his house. Ty's house had a little collapsing fiasco, but Carolyn saved the day and helped him build a sound structure. Ryan turned his house into a train. And I had fun decorating a relatively simple house with chocolate chip lights.

As the kids finished, they ran off to play while the adults cleaned up. The noise escalated rather quickly--as it turns out, kids are loud. They had a great time, though, and I'm glad we shared one of our favorite activities with friends!

Friday, December 15, 2017


This year we told Lila we were going to let her open one Christmas present on November 30.

She was pleased.

She was also pleased when she opened the present and it was a Peppa Pig Advent Calendar! For the past two year both boys have gotten advent calendars for their birthdays. Her birthday is after Christmas, so she's been kind of bummed watching them open advents when she doesn't have one. This year we changed that situation.

Lila has been so cute about her advent. She hasn't missed a single day and she immediately runs to show everyone in the family what she got after she's opened her Peppa for the day. She's gotten a ton of new characters and some accessories for them, too. 

All of the new Peppas mean that we've been playing Peppa more than ever lately. So, last week when Lila didn't have school on Friday, she and I created Peppa town:

Complete with a sledding hill.

On Sunday, while I was at Bells, she and Asher extended Peppa Town and turned it into Peppa Tropolis. I forgot to take a picture while it was all set up, but they'd set up the hot air balloon ride and an office for Daddy by the door. The section with all the little lines is a parking lot! Apparently they'd run out of tape but found a bit extra by peeling up the label of the tape roll and by taking a bit from other spots so they could finish the parking lot. Pretty cute if you ask me!

 The boys are pretty cute with their calendars, too. Asher's first day had the mini version of a ship he already has, which is quite adorable.