Tuesday, December 25, 2012

McRae Family Christmas Card 2012 (in case you didn't make the cut this year...)

Let's face it, Josh and I know a lot of people!  We have been apart of many groups, gotten to know many people, developed great friendships, and could EASILY send out a Christmas card to HUNDREDS of families and friends!  I am truly sorry if you did not receive our Christmas card this year!  I've had these sitting on my counter since Thanksgiving, but finally got them out this week :)

If you did not receive a card this year, here is what you're missing out on - so really, now you're not missing anything!  If you're like me and keep your cards every year (yes I punch a hole in all of them and put them on a ring...they're hanging up in our living room now from 2010-present!) print this and enjoy :)

Merry CHRISTmas and Happy New Year!  

Our Christmas Card was made using Shutterfly.com (my personal favorite customized photo gift site)
The McRae Christmas Quiz
It’s that time of the year again-time for the 3nd annual McRae Christmas Quiz.  We have had a very busy year and I actually contemplated not sending out our quiz…hopefully it’s worthwhile!
1.      Callie has shared several obsessions this year!  Starting with Elmo and his friends, quickly moving into Doc McStuffins…who is she currently (December 2012) obsessed with?!?
a.      Princess Sofia the First
b.      Cinderella
c.       Doc McStuffins
d.      Finding Nemo
2.      An obvious question is about the birth of our boys, Collin & Carter!  What were their birth times on May 20th, 2012?
a.      Collin: 11:32 PM  Carter: 11:46 PM
b.      Collin: 11:00 PM  Carter: 11:30 PM
c.       Collin: 11:28 PM  Carter: 11:53 PM
d.      Collin: 11:35 PM  Carter: 11:48 PM
3.      What was Callie’s reaction to her new brothers for the first month?
a.      She did not like them and wanted them sent back!
b.      She looked off into space and avoided talking about them.
c.       She loved everything about them and smothered them with kisses.
d.      She ignored them.
4.      We are now members of Our Saviors Lutheran Church!  To get ourselves involved, what has Cori volunteered to do once a month?
a.      Teach a Preschool Sunday School class
b.      Usher
c.       Communion
d.      Read Scripture
5.      Josh did what for the first time this summer?
a.      Hit a homerun
b.      Ran a half marathon
c.       Went Skydiving
d.      Went fishing with Denzer
6.      Cori teaches a Community Ed Class about what (and has recently been contacted by other school districts to teach in their communities!)?
a.      Pottery
b.      Facebook
c.       Shutterfly
d.      Pinterest
7.      At their 6 month appointment (their most recent), Collin & Carter were the exact same in everything EXCEPT one area…what was that one area (hint, it was only a difference in 1)
a.      Weight (difference of 1 ounce)
b.      Head Circumference (difference of 1 cm)
c.       Height (difference of 1 inch)
d.      Teeth (difference of having one more)
8.      How do Cori & Josh decide who gets up in the middle of the night with the boys?
a.      This isn’t an issue; they both sleep through the night.
b.      They wait until Callie comes in and says, “My brothers are crying again”
c.       Whoever pretends to be sleeping the longest doesn’t have to get up
d.      They each take one of the boys each night and rotate nights
9.      Which of the following is not a quote that Callie has said?
a.      “Don’t flush me to Jesus” – referring to her fish being flushed
b.      “Where’s his butt?” – referring to a deer head
c.       “Stop Kissing, it’s gross” – referring to Josh and I kissing
d.      “Amen” – referring to ‘the end’ of her stories
10.  Josh and Cori both would both like this for Christmas…
a.      Money for their upcoming trip to Disney with Callie.
b.      SLEEP!
c.       A weekend getaway – just the two of us!!
d.      All of the above!
We hope that you have a very safe, happy and blessed holiday season!  Our family has been doubly blessed this year, and we are so thankful for the love and support we have received.  Having multiples is far beyond anything we ever imagined it would be.  To our friends that have multiples and to the MOM’s Group (Mother’s of Multiples) – THANK YOU!  You’ve helped in so many ways!
Seeing Callie grow up into the smart, beautiful young little lady that she is, and seeing how quickly Collin & Carter are developing their own personalities, makes us so thankful for all the time we have together.  Our home may be messy and full of baby & toddler toys & equipment, but our hearts are over flowing with love!
Celebrate our Savior’s Birth and have a very Merry Christmas!
1. B;  2. D;  3. B;  4. A;  5. A;  6. C;  7. B;  8. D;  9. C;  10. D
With lots of love,
Josh, Cori, Callie, Collin & Carter McRae  XOXOXOXO

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Collin & Carter: 7 Month Update

Where has the time gone!?  I feel like I seriously JUST updated about their 6 month stats!  How are my boys already 7 months - ALMOST 7.5 months old?  The changes they have been making these past few weeks is so much fun!  Maybe it's the season and experiences that come with it, but regardless - they are SO MUCH FUN!  I think Callie would agree to this :)

Seven Month Update

Food - They are officially eating us out of the house!  3 meals a day and a lot at that!  We are using the Gerber Baby Food (I have some made in our freezer, but haven't pulled them out yet...I'm not sure I would be able to keep up making it everyday for them...)  We have found they are drinking fewer bottles now because of all the food they are eating, so that is nice!

Sleep - Both boys are sleeping in their cribs...FINALLY!  Carter pretty much sleeps through most nights, so when it is your night to have Carter, you are in luck :)  Collin still wakes up, but lately he has been going back to sleep rather easily!  Whenever a new tooth is cutting, it's going to be a hellish night.  

Clothes - Both boys are in 9 month clothing...I know, I can't believe it either!  They are growing like weeds I tell you!

Weight - I'm going to make this really easy for you - both boys are weighing in at 17 pounds...they are the exact same weight!  Crazy!

Height - Both boys are 27 inches long as well...getting nice and tall :)

Diapers - Both boys are in size 3 diapers (I swear they are making this post very easy for me!).  Although Collin typically will have the massive blow out diapers...I swear, Callie NEVER did this.  Carter doesn't do this too often either, but it is a GUARANTEE that Collin will!  And it's GROSS!

Health - We have finally gotten everything under control and figured out.  Both boys have dealt with double ear infections, colds, teeth coming in, and bad coughs.  This has lead to many sleepless nights, restlessness and feeling uncomfortable.   I mean - if you are constantly dealing with a pain in your mouth and not feeling good, how would you sleep and feel all day?  Exactly - that's how my poor boys felt...and then it was two - so that's how Josh and I felt!  You know it's bad when people at work comment that I look tired :(
Both boys have their two bottom teeth, and Collin is cutting his top teeth...won't be long now!

Fun Facts - Where do I even begin!!!??  Collin is sitting independently, rolling ALL over, twisting in circles, going up on all fours and rocking, and has began scooting himself!  This little man will be crawling soon!  He is a HUGE eater, so happy and smiley and has the biggest, bluest eyes I have ever seen!  I fall in love with him every time I look at him :)
Carter still hasn't rolled from his back to his tummy, but we're not comparing, he'll do it on his own time.  He is so stiff that we've been working on getting him to sit up - which he is doing now!  Way better!  He can now sit independently and reaches for toys!  He is a talker!  He is constantly blabbering about something :)  He has this sweet "tuft" of hair in the front that makes him look like an old man...a hair cut may be in his near future :)  He has the deepest and silliest laugh!  He has these ticklish spots that get him going every time :)  He is so easy to fall in love with, especially when he gives you his sly smile :)

These boys are so much fun!  They are so much more playful now and laughing all the time!  They are very happy boys, go with the flow and entertain themselves (which I think is a HUGE skill to master).  I love when I hear them laughing out of nowhere, only to look over and see they are making each other laugh!  I can't imagine our lives without these two knuckleheads...they have brought so much joy into our lives...and Callie simply adores having brothers :)  There are times you can tell she misses the attention, but now that they are playing, she really enjoys playing along with them :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Callie's FIRST Hair Cut!

Josh and I knew the day would eventually come when Callie would need her first hair cut!  What that day was going to look like was far beyond me :)  But it came...it came full force right at me...Monday, December 3, 2012...

I remember the day I made the appointment and the receptionist at The Style Lounge in Austin asked for my daughter's name!  "Callie McRae, that's C-A-L-L-I-E"  I said with a very shaky voice!

Getting her there was difficult.  She didn't want to go, she didn't want her hair cut, and she was just mad.  We thought this was going to be a heated battle and the end of her world as we knew it!  But, knowing Callie's latest obsession with Princess's and Princess Cinderella, her Daddy said that she could have new "Princess" hair :)  


Here is Holly!  Holly will forever be remembered as the amazing stylist who gave our daughter her first EVER hair cut!  She was so good to her and made her feel like a real princess!  It probably helps that she has a 3 year old girl of her own :)

She helped me capture great photos and made sure that every single aspect of this hair cut was captured :)  And yes...I saved her hair for her baby book!

My biggest fear going into this cut was that Callie's beautiful, natural curls would be cut off and not come back...but she needed a trim desperately and no way was I allowing my daughter to have split ends.

Seriously - Callie you look like a model in this picture above!

Here it is...the first snip of the scissors!

And here it is folks...her first little locks being cut off!  Naturally Josh and I both agreed to keep Callie's hair long!  It is so much fun to style and she lets me do it!

She sat so wonderfully the entire time!  She was cracking us all up too :)  Holly was telling Callie that she would receive a sucker afterwards for being a good girl!  Callie proceeds to tell her that it's like going poop - she gets a sucker then too :)  Yes, Holly got a good laugh out of that one :)

I love these blow dryer pictures :)

Holly and Callie!  Such a big moment :)  Oh and I forgot to mention - I had extreme water works rolling down my cheeks as the first cuts were made!  This was a huge milestone in her life!  I'm just so happy that we were there to witness it!

There's my beautiful girl!  Smiles, curls and bouncy, healthy hair!

Look at this natural flip :)  I LOVE it :)

Daddy got his hair cut as well afterwards, so Callie was helping Holly out!  In between dancing around the salon, singing, entertaining the others, and taking extremely random pictures on my phone :)

Such a brave girl, Callie!  We are so proud of you and can't believe how quickly you are growing up!  It took 2 years and 8 months for us to cut your hair...that's a long time, but it was healthy and strong...just needed some love!

M.O.M. Christmas Party

This past weekend, we had the honor of celebrating this amazing season with a group of individuals that I have grown very close to and very fond of!  This group of individuals have become a HUGE support system in our life and we have turned to them for more advice than we could possibly imagine :)  Southern Minnesota's MOM Group!  Oh how I love my fellow Mother's of Multiples!  They get it...the ins, the outs, the ups and downs, the good the bad, the happy the sad!  They can give advice that actually makes sense (and honestly, advice that we actually listen to)!  and the women I have turned to for some very personal advice and insight!  It is because of these women that Josh and I are as strong as we are today...Thank you ladies :)

This was the first BIG event that I volunteered to help prepare!  I was in charge of some crafts :)  I brought coloring pages, the Santa countdown (with cotton balls - thank you Josh for helping "pre" count all of these) and the "Family Christmas Plate" (thank you Pinterest!).

All of these were a hit and so much fun to see so many families joining in together with their children to make crafts, eat snacks, decorate cookies and mingle :)

Callie was so proud of her Santa!  I love how she drew his eyes on :)  Every day we add a cotton ball to Santa's beard!  She tells me where to put glue and away we go :)

She decorated a Mouse for our Christmas tree :)

Snacks and love from and for her brothers :)

Collin thought he would be funny and drink from Callie's sippy cup :)

Cookie decorating - which, by the way - the homemade frosting was the most amazing frosting I have ever had :)  I need this recipe!

Then the fun began!  Santa & Mrs. Claus came!  I couldn't believe it either :)  They were handing out gifts to all of the boys and girls as well ;) Callie was sitting very patiently waiting for her and her brother's names to be called :)

Would you look at this...a gift from Santa :)

How did Santa possibly know that Callie wanted this!?!  WOW!!!

Carter was racked out, but Collin was excited to have a present from Santa as well!

She was so excited to have her picture taken with Santa & Mrs. Claus!  Man does she love them :)

The whole clan!

She ran up and gave them each a big hug goodbye!  It was so sweet :)

Thank you MOM's for putting on such a memorable party for all of our families!  We had an absolute BLAST and couldn't ask for a better group to be apart of :)  Merry Christmas!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Our Christmas Season has begun :)

Christmas in the City
For the third year in a row, we have ventured down the day after Thanksgiving to attend Austin's finest, Christmas in the City :)  This is in Downtown Austin and it is a BLAST - especially if you have children :)  What I love most about it, is that it has become a family tradition of ours to go!  

We always go a little early and wait in line FIRST for our pictures with Santa - he comes in at the end of the parade, so we miss the parade, but we see Santa before the large line up begins!  Callie, for the 3rd year, had no tears and was actually excited to see Santa!  She asked Santa for a VERY specific gift, and if you can believe it - it is NOT Doc McStuffins related!  Sorry - can't spill the beans considering it is her wish to Santa!

 Callie growing through the years :)

 The boys were excited to meet Santa!

 This is not the professional photo, but still cute :)

 Bruiser was playing with Callie!

 She love him!
He's the Bruins Hockey Team's mascot :)

 Face paint!

 Oh yes, Doc & Chilly came with!  Every year we go to Steve's Pizza for dinner when we are finished walking around the shops :)  Steve's tends to be a tradition in general for every holiday in our household!

 Eating her cookie she decorated at the bike shop AFTER she ate her pizza...we are semi smart parents :)

 Daddy and Carter :)

Mommy & Collin - looks like I got the spit up too :)

Christmas in the Southwest
For the 2nd year now, we attended Christmas in the SW.  The first year with Callie I was leading up a community wide concert (perfect timing on the date right...darn!), but this is our 2nd year and Callie loves it!  We went to Sterling and saw Santa...again, but this girl was just as excited!  The photos are free and they are high quality - as our very own favorite photographer, Mary Landherr Photography, is the one who takes these shots for the community!  

Callie was just as excited to see Santa and asked him for the SAME gift she did before, only added a small part to it (which technically they go together, so I'm not surprised).  Later she was telling me about something, and I said, you should ask Santa for that, and she responded with, "No mom, I asked Santa for _____".  Okay, so it looks like Santa only brings the one gift!?!??

 The boys waited in line for a very long time and were absolute rock stars!  We are so blessed with such amazing children :)
 Again - not the professional photo, but still SO cute :)

 Callie with Christopher's (our Elf on the Shelf) friend!  She gave Callie a toy Barbie (which was so cheap that it later fell apart and Callie was laughing hysterically that her barbie had one leg!)...


Callie's dance class also performed for the Christmas program!  This was another extremely proud moment as her mother!  If you can recall her dance recital from the spring performance - she was scared out of her wits ends.  She danced in front of hundreds of people, did the moves, but was straight faced and so serious - I wasn't sure if she'd ever do it again!  Last night, she was all smiles, totally into the moves, remembered them and shined!  I could not be more proud of her!  She was so brave to do this in front of everyone!  Her Gal Pal BFF Ella is in her dance class as well, these two girls are beyond cute together :)  Best part is - we love her parents :)  She has a little brother that is just 2 months younger than our boys, so we will have playmates for life (as long as you don't leave us!)
 Absolutely BEAUTIFUL!

Seriously - things just doesn't get ANY cuter than this!!!!
So proud of her!

 Callie's Dance Friends!

Checking out her friend, Aubrey's muscles here!

 Callie and her Gal Pal Ella :)

 Checking out her fine work that she created :)

 This girl LOVES having her face painted!

If you think this is going to be our final "Christmas" event for the season, you are completely wrong!  We have several more events coming up to keep our holiday excitement going!  And more times to see and visit with Santa!  I will be creating another McRae Family Christmas Shutterfly book for the 2012 holiday season...I just LOVE these memories :)