Before I jump into my post I feel like it's only appropriate to mention the the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut and also the one days before at Clackamas Town Center just a 15 minute drive from our house. I can't help but to think of the families of the victims, the bystanders and also of the emergency workers who are having to process such gruesome scenes, as the rest of us continue on with our lives.
And so I pray.
I pray for the families, the moms, dads, sisters and brothers. I pray for peace and comfort in their hearts, thoughts, and minds. I pray that somehow they will be able to put the pieces of their lives back together.
I pray that they have families to be with on Christmas morning and that the new year will bring healing.
I pray that they would find hope in the Lord who gives us a peace that surpasses all understanding.

"And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ." Phillipians 4:7


On a lighter note, onto our weekend...Thursday night my mom watched the boys while Chris and I grabbed a quick dinner and finished our Christmas shopping.

I had been wanting to try out the banh mi's at Best Baguette since I had read they were one of the best in Portland. It didn't hurt that the restaurant is close to our house.
They have around 25 subs on the menu, half are American and half are Vietnamese banh mi's.
All of the sandwiches come on a freshly baked baguette, and they all are aroud $4!
(there's no hipster food competition in Beaverton I guess)
They also have a ton of fun drinks including thai iced tea and boba tea.

Chris having fun with the boba straws:
(I love that the garbage cans say "Hank"...I kind of wish Chris' name was hank just for the purposes of this photo.)
Grilled chicken and grilled pork bahn mis with an avocado smoothie and a thai iced tea:
(It's so good that we are going back tonight!)
Buck getting all bundled up for grocery shopping on Friday:
Saturday we had a brunch party with a bunch of our best friends and their kids. Most of us have known each other since college and after getting married we used to get together once a week for dinner. With kids in the picture and some people living out of town (ahem Sara) we are lucky if everyone gets together once a year.
The kids wore pjs and we had hot chocolate, lattes and mochas and a ton of tasty breakfast food to eat.
It actually started snowing for the first time before people arrived so it set the mood perfectly!
Buckley wasn't really sure why Fern just sat on his lap:
Fun with cotton balls:
Christmas smoothies:
Someone liked their hot chocolate:
(Bennett doesn't realize that marshmallows are for eating)


I don't really remember what we did Sunday but I think it involved time at home until we went to church.
Earlier this week it snowed a couple inches at our house.
I told Bennett to go get ready and he came out in underwear and an upside down windbreaker:
After helping him put on a little more clothing we finally got outside:
We walked around our yard and built a mini snowman, then he wanted to go back inside for some hot chocolate:

We are starting our Christmas festivities tomorrow and I can't wait!
(I assume Bennett will be "helping" everyone open their presents and 
Buck will want to eat all of the paper.)

Merry Christmas Friends!
It's that time of year again, when I figure out which delicious treats to make for the guys in our family.

My dessert board on Pinterest is overflowing with ideas (774 of them) and it's always difficult for me to choose just what to make. I think the next two weeks will make up for my lack of baking this year!

Here's what I'm thinking...
(it still needs to be narrowed down a bit...which ones would you choose?)

chocolate fudge peanut butter cookie stuffed cookies

bakery style xxl chocolate chip cookies

oreo truffles
(using candy cane joe joes!)

biscoff oatmeal cookies

chocolate carmel cookie brittle
(instead of saltines I might do pretzels...I can't decide)

Momofuku's cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow cookies

browned butter snickerdoodles

Check out my past years Christmas sweets posts too!
Thursday night was date night and we grabbed dinner at Vita Cafe on Alberta.
It was mostly a vegetarian/vegan menu and I usually don't like judging a restaraunt on our first trip, but everything we got was really salty. Bleh. The thick, hand-cut fries were my favorite thing but they were also pretty salty. Put away the salt shaker Vita Cafe!
They did have a ton of amazing looking vegan cakes however.
Us at dinner:
When we got home, we got a little peek at what the boys did while we were gone.
I love seeing them play together:
Saturday morning I woke up with a cold, so we just kind of hung out.
Bro time on the couch:
Sweet little guy, who just so happens to have caught my cold:
(For the last couple of months, we have been sick for two weeks then healthy for one, then it repeats. So weird/annoying, A dirty 3 year old boy and a baby that puts everything in his mouth don't mix I guess.)
On Sunday, we met up with Abi to get a couple of updated family pictures.
I absolutely cannot wait to see them!

Bob Goff spoke at church that night. That guy has so many awesome stories and he's so funny to listen to. I'm attempting to read his book Love Does but I'm a.) not exactly the book/reading-type and b.) not exactly sure why I thought the holidays would be a good time to pick up a book. I'm sure I'll finish it someday,  I guess it's a New York Times Best Seller. So cool.

Monday we had to cancel a playdate because of Buck's cold, so we just chilled at home again.
Piano time:
That night we decided to go to Zoolights, because it was likely one of the last dry days we'd have to be able to see them. Buck slept most of the time and he was bundled up in the Ergo so we kept each other warm.
If you haven't been to Zoolights, it's so cool.
Bennett loved it this year, despite standing in line for the train for 1.5 hours.
It went quickly and they have displays for you to look at while you wait, so it wasn't horrible and Bennett was so patient.

Waiting in line:
Still waiting:
Finally on the train:
(of course B asked where Thomas was.)
View from the train:
I love this one, except for that random guy. 
He walked in right as I took the picture:
Buck sleeping away:

This was the first year Bennett wasn't in a stroller for Zoolights and I think he really liked it.
All that walking definitely wore him out, which is a good thing.

Happy Wednesday Friends!

(you might want to turn down your speakers for this one)

Friday night Chris and I saw a movie at the McMenamins Mission Theater.
I love seeing movies there because it's so cheap (can't beat $3) and you can eat delicious food while you watch a movie.
The only downside is that they don't have tots or fries like all of the other McMenamins but the food is delicious as always. 
I rarely stray from my favorite, the turkey sandwich. 
(I'm a sucker for turkey and cranberry together and the bread is amazing.)
Here are some pictures of the theater if you've never been...
From our seats:
On our way to order food:
Saturday morning bro time:
Saturday evening we went to Bennett's best friend Avery's 3rd birthday.
We pretty much did't see B the whole time because he was off playing, but I did get to hang out with this guy: 
Sunday we had a lazy day at home.
The boys made coffee and breakfast:
We played all morning, and during nap time Chris made these very organized lunches:
(he would.)
After lunch, Chris left early for church since he was playing in the band and Bennett and I tried to get a good picture of us.
This was the best:
and my favorite outtake:

We also did this:
(click the link and turn your speakers down!)

We "elf-ed" ourselves!
(I removed the video...I didn't realize that it would forever play the the 
obnoxious Christmas music regardless of what post you are reading!)

Happy Friday Friends!
I got the message saying that I've reached the storage limit for pictures with Blogger, but I started using Flickr as the middle man. As if getting a blog post up wasn't a multi-day thing, it's now a little more time consuming. 
(Though I guess I'm glad to be able to keep it updated at all. I've posted at least once a week for the last 3 years, and for the first two years I posted almost 5 times a week. I laugh now when I think about all the extra time I didn't think I had!)
Anyways, all that to say... yes, I'm posting about our last weekend when it is now Friday.

This past weekend was Thanksgiving and it was pretty laid back this year.

Chris had a really slow day on Wednesday so he came home early and was able to finish up the stool project we've been working on for a couple of weeks.
This little stool has so many uses but was pretty boring looking before we painted it.
Bennett likes to stand on it to help us cook and he also sits backwards on it to eat if he's watching a show:
We also got our Stickygrams in the mail and I love them:
On Thanksgiving I actually did my hair all fancy-like so we had to take a picture to document:
Chris and Buckley on the way in to my family's Thanksgiving:
Saturday night I went to Abi's for her birthday/craft night.
We did an old Finnish craft called Himmeli, which is really just string and stir straws:
Sunday morning we met Chris' parents at Lovejoy Bakers for some breakfast then went to grab coffee at Ristretto. Schoolhouse Electric was closed unfortunately but I loved their tree out in Ristretto: 
We were able to get most of our Christmas decorations up over the weekend.
Chris put of lights on the house and I love the way they look with the new paint:
Sunday after nap time, it was so nice out so we decided to be spontaneous and go get a tree instead of going to church. We figured there may not be another chance to get a tree in dry weather, so we jumped on it.
We went to a little tree farm called Century Farm and it was essentially in this family's giant back yard and the trees were so nice!
Keeping eachother warm:
"This one is perfect mama":
Found one:
This is the very first picture of all four of us. Bennett was staring at the candy cane the woman had just given him. He couldn't believe he was just given candy.
Classic Hardestys:
Earlier this week we decorated the inside of the house.
Bennett has never been interested in decorating the tree until this year.
He loved it and hung all of the ornaments at his height:
The living room mid-decorating:
(notice all of the ornaments)
The washi tape stag head that Chris did:
(and my new paper trees, I kind of love them.)

Now that the decorating is done, I can focus on wrapping.

Have a good weekend friends!