don't blink

this post is two-fold, you are going to get a very brief look at thanksgiving and christmas for our eargle family, since the blog was neglected during that time, and secondly, on the eve of my eldest child's birthday i'm still amazed at how children grow up right before your eyes.

thanksgiving 2010 was a whirlwind adventure through annapolis, DC, baltimore, and pittsburgh (i know the last stop is random, but we always stop on our annual tday road trip in pitt to visit friends at the end of our holiday). reflecting on the road trip it went surprisingly well with our backseat duo, wilhelm & elly, if we neglect to recall the ridiculous DC beltway traffic & the fact that our children were in the car on day one for 10+ hours. our visits with friends in annapolis & dc were so enjoyable and along the way we found time to do a bit of sight seeing by the bay and at the national zoo. then it was on to baltimore for crab cakes, turkey & dressing, and lots of gravy, at granpo & gran mo's. we ate more than we needed to, gave lots of hugs, and hated to leave, but were glad to be a part of the annual family holiday celebration.side note: wilhelm clarke and elly violet, are developing such an amazing sibling relationship. now you wouldn't think so by looking at the below, hostage situation photo, but truly he loves his little sister and she thinks he hangs the moon. their giggles at one another make my heart smile. the below is a result of letting your 3 year old have pretend hand-cuffs for his Halloween costume and letting your daughter have an annoying toy that deserves a little time upside down every once in a while. though as i look at this picture i know that in a year or so elly violet my have a stronger reaction to her brother's actions than she did this time. christmas came, i think sooner this year than in years past. we put the tree up and before you knew it we were taking it down. between those two occurrences we played with our Christmas train, wrote letters to Santa, talked about Jesus being born, ate too much food, started a Christmas eve tradition with Krispy Kreme doughnuts, and were blessed with the company & gifts from family & friends. this year wihelm clarke asked santa for a grey & white remote control robot, and some baby shoes for elly. the genuine excitement and joy of the season that wilhelm had this year was contagious, and was so much fun to experience. and if you didn't notice, elly is sitting up in this picture. shortly after thanksgiving she started sitting up on her on. since then she has made MAJOR milestones including (but not necessarily in order) eating real food, getting her first tooth sprout, and saying the start of momma. this exponential change in our seven month old daughter leads me to this evening. as i finish this email i am very tired (so i may or may not have to edit this post tomorrow), for its a birthday week at the eargle homestead. our wihelm clarke will turn 4 tomorrow! i can't even begin to put into words my complete range of emotions this event causes for me.

mainly, it literally makes my head spin to look at our children and see how much they have changed in such a short period of time. it also causes me to analyze if we are taking each moment & living it to the fullest with them, doing our best to be their parents and making sure we are providing them with the guidance that will make them the people we pray they will become. i'll wait to reflect on that which is wilhelm clarke in tomorrow's post, but will leave you with one of his recent pics and a sneak peak into the farm birthday party we are hosting for him this weekend (the invitation).