O Christmas Tree | 2016

We put our tree up on Sunday after Thanksgiving.  It’s always one of my favorite days, putting up the tree!  We had already decorated the den a little bit (because we did Johnson family pictures in front of the fireplace) but we worked on the tree and the outside lights on Sunday.

Peyton had a lot of fun bringing the ornaments that Forest gave her over to me at the tree and we would try to put them on together.  I’ve been a broken record since Sunday saying “no no.  We look but don’t touch.  Put that back on the tree please.”  The only thing low enough for her to grab is plastic candy canes but she gets them anytime I turn my back!

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

^Peyton was using a plastic toy Santa as a camera remote. :)

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

trimming the tree

Until next time — Cindy


Indiana Christmas Vacation

We spent the last week of 2015 in Indiana – visiting, meeting, hugging, relaxing, Christmas-ing, and surprise party-ing.

We started our 2-day journey the day after Christmas.  We drove 6 hours from our house to the Pennsylvania/Ohio line and unloaded all the bags and things we would need (in the pouring rain…).  Peyton and Indie both did really good overnight.  Peyton might have fussed once in the middle of the night and Indie only growled at a noise once or twice.




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Christmas Day [2015]

And I’m back for round II today to share pictures from our Christmas Day!  Christmas was so fun with Peyton this year!  At only 6.5 months we weren’t sure how involved she would be (and truthfully she didn’t know what the heck was going on!) but she ripped wrapping paper off of gifts and played with her toys so I’d say she had a great first Christmas!  We set up the camera on the tripod across the living room and every once in awhile I’d hop over to hit the shutter to start the 10 second timer.












showing off our gifts while the baby tries to eat wrapping paper!










best picture we could get in her ‘my first Christmas’ shirt:




while the baby naps…


mommy takes pictures!



family picture (Indie was too busy with her new toy):


love that she loves her toy camera:



dinner cooked by Forest:


Until next time — Cindy

*All images are original to A View from the Shore

Christmas Eve [2015]

Starting this post with a great big HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my mom aka Gramma (to Peyton)!  We love you so very much and wish you a day full of love!

And now for pictures from our Christmas Eve.

Complete with a photo session in her Christmas dress since we couldn’t go to Christmas Eve service at church (she had bronchitis):








Christmas Eve gift from Grampa & Gramma:






Opening our family Christmas Eve gift:







And family pictures in our PJs:



aaaaand cuddles before bedtime:



Until next time (which will be later today to share Christmas Day pictures!!) — Cindy

*All images are original to A View from the Shore

Christmas 2014

Christmas Eve, after church –

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (1 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (3 of 14)

^16 week bump :)

Christmas Eve gifts

Christmas morning –

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (7 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (8 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (9 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (10 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (11 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (12 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (13 of 14)

Christmas Eve & Day 2014 (14 of 14)

Christmas was quiet this year for us.  Last year we had my parents here until a few days before Christmas so it was fun celebrating with them.  This year we stayed home and didn’t have any family visiting.  But it was a wonderful day!

Forest asked me what my favorite gift was and, since he forced me to answer, I chose Lightroom for editing my pictures.  I think they FitBit came in a very close second though.  Or the hoodie… I seriously can’t decide!  And Forest said his favorite gift this year was, surprisingly, the lamp I got him for his nightstand.  It’s the little things with that guy, I tell ya.

Indie received her fair share of toys and treats.  She had torn apart at least 3 before the day was over but she would run from one end of the house to the other with a different toy in her mouth each time.  Adorable.

We had yummy cinnamon rolls for breakfast.  We chatted/FaceTimed with Forest’s family and opened all the gifts we had exchanged and a little later we chatted with my family.  It was so fun to see Chansler opening gifts.  He was was much more interested in the wrapping paper and boxes than the toys but he was adorable none-the-less, especially in his Christmas outfit!

We made a roast for dinner (which we turned the leftovers into cheese steaks the next day) and the house smelled so good all day while it was cooking in the crock pot.

On Christmas Eve we opened our “family gifts” (two new games – Bananagrams from me and Linkee from Forest) but didn’t get a chance to play them that night.  So we played both games on Christmas evening. I really hate typing this but Forest won all of the games… I was thiiiiiis close to winning Bananagrams a couple times but always fell short.  Forest was actually skeptical about Bananagrams but he’s pretty much addicted to it now.  So fun!

Christmas was wonderful and we hope yours was too!

Until next time — Cindy

Christmas Traditions

Most families have Christmas traditions – hosting a party on Christmas Eve, dinner at a certain family member’s house, sending out Christmas cards, etc.

I’m here to share ours!  The ones we brought from our separate families (the ones we grew up with), and the ones we’ve started for our family.

From Forest’s family:

  • Baking and decorating Christmas cookies in the week(s) leading up to Christmas
  • Waking up extra early to get Christmas started

From Cindy’s family:

  • Christmas Eve service at church followed by opening one gift before we went to bed (it was always pajamas)
  • Waking up extra early to get Christmas started
  • Cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Christmas morning after we opened all of our gifts

New traditions that we’ve started since being married:

  • Attending Christmas Eve service at church
  • Opening one gift on Christmas Eve that we got for the family (a board/card game, movie, etc.) and playing/watching before bed
  • Watching The Polar Express on Christmas Eve

Christmas is always so special.  Not because of the gifts under the tree or the food we make.  It’s the family we have beside us (near and far) that makes it special.  It’s the traditions we’ve kept or the new ones we make.  It’s the day of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.

1 John 4:9

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.  And angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid.  I bring you good news that will ause great joy for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

Luke 2:8-14

Until next time — Cindy