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After dinner at Funnruckers, we all went to Rhema to see their Christmas lights. The boys on the bridge which lights up in sync with Christmas music playing over speakers.


The two million lights make a great background for photos.


Mama joined in for a photo with lights reflecting off a small pool in the background.






...and Landon.

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Dec 26 2013

Christmas Cookies


Aunt Donelda brought us a supply of scrumptious Christmas cookies for the holidays. From the top, clockwise, finishing in the middle left to right: Toffee Oat Cookies, Trisha Yearwood's Pecan Tassies, Trisha Yearwood's Snickerdoodles, Chocolate Gooey Butter Cookies, Peanut Brittle, Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies, Peanut Butter Balls and Rum Balls.


The best part...Daddy's secret stash of frozen chocolate chip cookies just like Daddy and Aunt Donelda's Grandma Buller used to have for us every time we visited.

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Dec 25 2013

Merry Christmas 2013


Merry Christmas to everyone. Here's hoping the celebration of Christ's birth comes with a bounty of peace, love and happiness. The boys are in front of the nativity scene after Christmas eve mass at church.


Aunt Donelda and her nephews in front of our Christmas tree.


Three little* elves before getting nestled all snug in their beds.

(At least one of them isn't so "little" anymore.)

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Our Christmas tree all decorated and surrounded by presents.

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Landon started out the tree decorating process by putting the star on top of our Christmas tree...with just a little help from Daddy.


"Baby brother, you have the most important job of all," says Daddy. "You get to put the star on top of the Christmas tree!"

It's a tradition we started two years ago after reading about Baby Brother in a Sesame Street book who put the star on his family's Christmas tree. If this tradition is going to last much longer, Daddy's gonna have to hit the weight room.

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The boys visited old Saint Nicholas after church today and filled him in on what they want for Christmas.

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Last night, Oklahoma was hit with its biggest ice storm since 2007. The storm provided a perfect photographing opportunity such as this bud from one of our crape myrtles (lagerstroemia).


Another ice covered crape myrtle bud.


More ice covered buds.


A crape myrtle branch...more ice than branch.


An ice covered branch that should be pointing up at about the same angle it is bent down.


Our holly bush with a vastly different ice accumulation than after our ice storm in 2009.


I was in Beaver, Oklahoma, all day yesterday and drove back in the thick of the ice storm late last night. It was pretty white knuckle, blasting the heat to keep the windshield from freezing, reaching out the window to grab the wiper so it would crash back into the windshield knocking off accumulated ice. But the worst part...Oklahoma drivers...more dangerous than any road condition. This was the ice that accumulated on my radio antenna. The rest of the car was even worse.


Not quite as much ice on the mailbox as in 2007.


Icicles hanging form our backyard pergola but, again, a little less than in 2007.


The icicles do make an interesting pattern.

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Dec 14 2013

Christmas Tree 2013


We picked out our Christmas tree today. It was cold! They no longer sell them right by our house so we had to drive a bit *cough* *cough* to their new location.


This year we picked out a Nordmann Fir (Abies nordmanniana) Christmas Tree. They are now being grown in America but originate from the Caucasus Mountains, south and east of the Black Sea in the Republic of Georgia and northern Turkey. Nordmann Fir is a new type of Christmas tree in America but has been used for many years in Europe, and is one of the most commonly grown Christmas tree species in Germany and Norway


Our Festivus Pole all ready to open like a butterfly coming out of its cocoon.


They didn't have any really big trees this year, so we had to settle on a nine footer which seems like miles away from our ten foot ceiling. With a thousand lights, a couple hundred ornaments and a big star on top it will, no doubt, be awesome.

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As part of Drew and Will's scouting activities, we all visited the Broken Arrow Historical Society Museum.


For some time, the scouts have been working on a variety of hand-crafted Christmas ornaments. They all worked together to decorate a Christmas tree with the ornaments. Drew, Landon and Will are standing by their pack's tree.


Two more scouts in the pack join in to proudly stand by the Christmas tree they worked hard to decorate.


The pack's beautiful Christmas tree.


The museum collected trees decorated and donated by various groups which will then be donated to needy families who otherwise wouldn't know the joy of a Christmas tree for Christmas.


After checking out their tree, the boys toured the museum the highlight of which is the Childers family log cabin which was their home from 1861 to 1948.


An older dental office...makes you appreciate modern dentistry.


Equipment and materials previously used by the First National Bank of Broken Arrow.


Everyone enjoyed their afternoon at the Broken Arrow Historical Society Museum and may have even accidentally learned something along the way.

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We started off our busy day today with a Lowes Build and Grow in Owasso where the boys put together a Christmas train.

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Oklahoma experienced a 4.5 magnitude earthquake at 12:10 p.m. today 7 miles ENE of Edmond and 17 miles NNE of Oklahoma City. I felt it sitting at my desk on the second floor at home in Tulsa. Mary was vacuuming and the boys were playing iphone/ipads on the couch while watching TV. None of them felt anything.


The U.S. Geological Survey reports the exact location of the earthquake was 35.680°N 97.355°W at a depth of depth 5.0 kilometers or 3.1 miles. There are no reports of damage or injury.

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While Daddy was at work today, Mama dressed up the boys in lots of layers and off they went to play in the 20 degree snow.


While Drew was trying to make a snowball in the dry crystalline powder, Landon took advantage of his unguarded back and landed a direct hit.


Will landed the next blow with a head shot on Drew.


Time for Drew's revenge. His snowball began to disintegrate as soon as it left his hand. A small core survived and made a direct hit on Will.


Will was quick to get his revenge with a hand full of fluff.


Two angry birds after their snowball fight...it's all good!


Landon closed out the frozen play with a snow angel. While the inability to get the snow to stick was a bit of a bummer, the boys still managed to have some fun in the Oklahoma snow.

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We had a pretty good snow storm start last night, at least by Tulsa standards. This morning I took Amber out and she had a great time playing in the freshly fallen snow.


Amber was so excited she ran full speed head first into a small drift of snow. These two frames are just a fraction of a second apart.


A little snow isn't going to stop Amber from going after an interesting smell.


What do you mean I've got something on my face?


Diving after something real or imagined in the snow.


Amber frolicking in the snow never tired despite the 20 degree temperature.

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Drew had his birthday party with friends tonight at Laser Quest. A dozen young boys eating pizza and cake and playing laser tag...what could be better?


The birthday boy Drew with his Lego Iron Man cake ready to blow out ten candles.


Ahhhrg...Tony Stark lost a leg!


Some well behaved birthday party guests.


Everyone enjoying their pizza and cake.


Reading a birthday card.


Opening a present.


Tulsa's Laser Quest playing area has three levels of glowing in the dark fun.


Landon is only four and the laser pack goes all the way down to his ankles and weighs a surprising amount (way heavier than I thought it would). But, Landon wasn't going to let anything stop him from playing laser tag with his big brothers and toughed it out.


You can just barely make out Will on the left. He was an awesome big brother and stuck with Landon the whole time in the scary and confusing dark maze like playing area.


Drew in mid-laser blast.


Another laser blast by Drew. It was a great party, with lots of good friends, family and fun!

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Dec 3 2013

Lego Iron Man Cake


For Drew's friends party tomorrow, Mary made a Lego Iron Man minifigure cake. These are the colors: Iron Man red, gold, black and just a little white...and one white Sweet Tart.


The Lego Iron Man cake starts with a standard minifigure mold with a little extra cake on his head for the helmet.


Start by icing the entire cake in Iron Man red.


Toothpick outline everything and start the detailing with the gold gel icing.


Finish off by outlining in black, adding in the white eyes and a Sweet Tart for Tony Stark's arc reactor.


The final product at Drew's birthday party with ten candles all ready to celebrate one lucky boy's birthday. Mary did another absolutely amazing job!

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