Friday, December 31, 2010

Gallaxy of Lights 2010

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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Momma and Daddy's Night Off

After a very stressful day . . . cleaning Katie's room. Shall I say anymore? Millard and Peggy came by and picked both children up to spend the night. Whoo Hoo! Can you say momma and daddy are walkin' in sunshine? Let me just tell you, I love my children with all my heart. They are God's greatest gift to us and I miss them terribly when they are gone with relatives or school. Saying that, sometimes this momma just needs a break. Plus, Katie is definitely a school nut. She began missing school last week. Last Monday, she asked me if she was finally going back to school that day. She was so disappointed when I told her no that she has another week. Her eyes got big and told me that she missed school and all of her friends. Thus, she is up under my chin at all times bored and chooses to get into trouble, instead of acting like big sister and helping me out. Doug loves to remind me how I'm going to miss this stage in her life when she turned into a teenager. Sure, he is absolutely correct. The trouble is, we are in the present right now and it doesn't seem to be too hilarious at the moment.

As soon as Millard and Peggy drove off with our little jewels. We had the best time tonight. We were both pretty hungry for hot wings. They were sooo good. Yum! After supper, we went bowling and played 3 holes of golf. I even got to go dancing. I love it! The best night in a very long time and we did all this without even leaving our home. LOL!! It was so much fun spending time with Doug like we use to before having children. It was just me and him . . . no television, no sports, no phone calls. It was GREAT! I hope we have another opportunity to do this more often. I was hoping this Wii would bring our family closer and so far so good. I just need to get more remotes. Right now, we only have 2 but I have a feeling we are going to have to get one more.

Speaking of Katie's stage, I may need your help.  We're going through this stage where she is so bored.  I've given her a couple of chores - she's responsible for helping Daddy take the trash down to the road and bringing them back up, along with our neighbors and putting the lids back on.  She is also responsible for keeping her room straightened up.  Normally, she does fairly well.  She doesn't like playing by herself, especially outside.  Colton is still too little to play on her level and she doesn't understand that - STILL.  She is just seeing what buttons to push with me and finding herself getting into trouble.  It seems to have been bad right before Christmas.  I thought it might be Christmasidious, what most children go through.  I hoping as soon as school starts back, she'll get back to normal.   I have a schedule printed out on her wall.  She has equal amount of time between tv/playtime, computer exercises and reading before going to bed each school night.  I'm hoping with this schedule her boredum will go away.  Has anyone else been going through this stage?  How did you handle it? 

In the past, when she was acting out because she wasn't getting her way (during the Summer), I had her pick up the back yard.  She had to pick up sticks and toys for a few days.  The problem was I had to stay out there with her because she doesn't like to be outside alone.  Then, I ended up helping because she wasn't getting anything done.  She knows how to play me like a fiddle.  "But mom, I don't know where there are any sticks?"  "I did pick up all the sticks" when she only picked up maybe 10 out 100 sticks.  Ugh!  She is a type person that when you tell her to look up, you'll catch her looking down.  She's really smart because she ends up getting out work.  I hear teenage years are 10x worse.  Boy, oh boy! 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A White Christmas in the South

We had a lovely white Christmas this morning. I would show you pictures, but unfortunately Blogger has informed me today that I've met my 1 GB storage file. I've checked into the matter and if I delete any of my photos from the Picasa albums, they will also delete from my blog. Ugh! :( I really want my pictures on my posts, so one day to publish my stories and pictures for my children. I suppose I'll have to hurry up and get this journal printed a whole lot sooner than I first thought. Thank goodness for our photosite, Phanfare. For those of you that have access to my file, that is where you'll find the great Christmas pictures until I can get Blogger fixed. If you would like to have access to my photosite (close friend or family members only), please leave me a comment. I also post pictures on Facebook.

Meanwhile, I'll have to tell you the stories without the photos. Last night, our family on my side came over for our annual Christmas Eve party. I think everyone had a great time, I know I did. We did the buffet style with a choice of turkey or ham sandwiches with all the fixin's and desserts galore. Oh my gosh, the stuff that the kids received. Katie kept telling me how awesome everything was that she received. There wasn't one thing she didn't like. In fact, there was a time where she had to disappear, to try things on. She went with her grandparents to see "Tangled" the other day, so Rapunzel is the new thing. What a great surprise for her that she was given a few Rapunzel items. Again, she kept telling me how nice everything was.

We took the opportunity to visit with family members that we haven't seen in awhile. Of course, I made sure that no one got too bored or stayed still for too long. We always have food and drinks for everybody to nibble on. The big entertainment was the Wii "Just Dance" and "Resort". Doug got some video of Susan and Maryann dancing. I took a few photos of our competitors. LOL! Everybody was laughing including the two competitors. It was a lot of fun. Once all of us ladies were wore out from dancing, we pulled out the Resort. Katie absolutely loves to play "Swordplay". It's her favorite and she will beat the pants off of you. You don't have to give her a chance, she doesn't give you the opportunity. I'm trying to teach her to be a good sport when playing games of any kind. Like any kid, she doesn't like to lose. Most of the time, she'll tell you "oh yeah, you just wait. I'll beat you up!" She is quite competitive and actually won a few matches with my sisters and nephew, playing Swordplay. HAHA! Maryann was really trying to win, but walked away with her head hanging low in the end. LOL! I'm just kidding. Actually, I think she was rather surprised how well Katie plays this game. Oh and Katie gets with it. I mean, she jumps up and down as she gets closer to the television. I've had to really talk with her about getting so close because I'm scared that she'll get carried away and end up beating up the TV. My favorite is "Just Dance". You dance your bottom off, but it's a lot of fun. Katie doesn't like playing it with me because I normally score higher than her. LOL! I'll try to have photos and videos posted very soon on Phanfare.

This morning, I was shocked because of all the white on the ground. It snowed most of the day today. We were kind of wondering if we were going to be snowed in because Doug noticed that the snow was sticking to our street, which concerned us both. We had planned to visit Doug's parents for the day. Around noon, the snow began to melt a little, it was wet snow. We tried to keep Katie out of it for as long as we could. She changed clothes so fast this morning that I didn't get to take my Christmas morning picture with her and Colton in front of the tree. She thought we would allow her to go out and play in it. Not hardly. We stuck to the plan, getting ready to head out. Believe it or not, we drove out of here on time, very carefully. His parents live more up on a mountain than we do, so there was a whole lot more snow than at our place. I took a measuring stick and it showed that they received between 3 1/2 - 4 inches of snow. It was pretty much still there when we left tonight.  We gave in and let Katie run around and make Snow Angels.  She had a blast until she began to get cold, in the house she went.  You don't have to tell her twice. 

God has blessed us so much that my cup is overflowing. I could go on and on about all the people and things He has allowed us to come into contact. I wouldn't know where to start and I'm afraid Google would cut me off for not having enough storage space before I could get to the end. Bottomline, Jesus is the greatest gift of all! You can receive all the material items that you could possibly want, but in the end it's worthless. Christ is everything! We try to instill this philosophy to our children. I think Katie and Colton had a wonderful Christmas experience this year and I hope you did as well. 

Love you and Merry Christmas!


Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas - God's Cure

If your physician called you and in a serious voice said, “Please come in as soon as you can. I have something to discuss with you,” you would know he has bad news! Your first response might be, “No, I don’t want to know.” But you go because it is only when you know the diagnosis that you can learn the cure.

God, our Great Physician, also has some bad news—about man’s spiritual condition. When against His expressed warning Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, God told Adam that all mankind would die spiritually and physically. That’s the bad news.

But He also gave the solution. He promised a Savior (Gen. 3:15). The apostle John tells us, “Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). But how does that help? Jesus came that first Christmas to bring God’s grace, something that none of us deserve because like Adam we have all sinned. But Jesus also came to reverse what sin brought. He came to be the truth (John 14:6) that would bring us back to God. He came to “save His people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21).

Listen to what the Great Physician has to say in the Bible about your spiritual condition. Then accept the cure He has provided—the gift of salvation through Christ.

Life is uncertain,
Death is sure;
Sin the cause,
Christ the cure. —Anon.

Spiritual blindness can be cured only by the Great Physician.
~ Our Daily Bread Devotion


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

What a Surprise

What a surprise I received when my neighbor knocked on our door this morning and gave this to me.  I just love it!  And it goes so well in our Kitchen.  Mrs. E said her daughter made it.  She is so creative.  I've seen these before on Etsy and had it saved on my list of crafts to do one day.
Katie and I finished her Fingerprint Snowman Ornament today.
This is exactly what Katie wanted to do most of the day.
Of course, we both are all snug on the couches tonight for our "Polar Express" party.  The Christmas lights are shining bright as we are watching Christmas movies.  Right now, we are watching "The Chipmunks Christmas Movie".  The moon is full tonight.  I told Katie that it looked like a spotlight shining down on the earth.  Katie suggested it might be Jesus checking on us with his flashlight.  I agreed and added that he might be seeing what we might be up to.  "Yep" she agreed.  


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Santa Claus is Coming to Town

The clock is a tickin' and Christmas Day will be here in a blink of an eye. This momma has been bustlin' around making sure everything is ready for ol' Saint Nick to come visit us on Christmas morning.

Here's a sneak peek into our Christmas decorations:
Katie helped set out the snow village this year.

Katie made me the glass snowman globe.  It is so cute!  I've got my Paperwhites growing that my mom gave me. 

Doug suggested hanging big ornament balls all through the house this year.  I really like them.

A few of Katie's new ornaments

Since Rapunzel is showing, I have to tell you that Katie got to see "Tangled" today with her grandparents.  She told me a little about the movie tonight, but overall really liked it.

We are hoping to replace the back & side door in the future, but I think our walls look good.  Now, I'm having a tough time deciding what to put on them.
Doug and Henry fixed the trim above the cabinets, but I'll wait until after the Christmas vacation before I paint the maple over the cabinets. 
We have Ruddy greeting our guests and yes, he has a rednose. 
This door display will be welcoming our guests for Christmas Eve.  I've been working on it for the past couple of days, but I think it's finally complete.  I didn't want to junk it up too much, but I had to add LED mini lights and gold shatter proof ornaments to it.  I created the wreath years ago, but still enjoy it. 

Fingerprint Snowman Ornament
I'm sure you remember this post for a Fingerprint Snowman Ornament.  I found time to make Colton's ornament and it was so much fun doing it.  Sure, I had to have two tries but it was so worth it because this is the finished product:
Call it a mom thing, but I just think this turned out so adorable and it's something Colton will have for as long as he wants it.  I did do some things different from the original instructions.  The instructions tell you to dip the child's hand in paint and then place it on the canvas.  Yeah, tried that . . . it didnt' work.  It just splattered white paint all over everything including the blue canvas.  Ugh!  After painting a second coat of baby blue paint, I painted the white paint on Colton's hand and then placed it on the canvas.  Sure, there were some imperfections, but I just took a little blue paint and fixed it.  Simple as that.  The instructions tell you to use a fine point Sharpie to do the drawing, but I enjoyed painting on the characteristics.  It's up to you.  Katie didn't get to finish her ornament because she was gone most of the day because she was enjoying the day with her grandparents.  I told her she could finish the picture tomorrow and I'll probably let her use the Sharpie just because she's inexperienced.  This is as far as we got with Katie's:

Yeah, I'll have to do some fixing on this one tomorrow. Haha!
I have been so busy today, but got so much done.  I went ahead and baked 2 dozen chocolate chip cookies and turned this -
into this -

I was able to make over 4 dozen Christmas (Red Velvet & Chocolate) Bon-Bons.  You can get the recipe from my recipes under "Holiday Bon-Bons".  You can use any flavor cake mix and frosting.

We received an early Christmas present in the mail yesterday.  Sarah made Katie and Colton scarves for Christmas.  The kids love them!  Thanks Sarah!

Colton got a little carried away with his scarf.  I guess he felt like he needed to shake the devil out of it.  LOL!  It got to be a big game with him because the more we laughed at him, the more he shook it. 

Tomorrow, I have another day planned for baking. I'm hoping to try my hand at making Stained Glass Sugar Cookies. Wish me luck! I promised Katie that we'd make cut-out Christmas cookies. Katie also has to finish her ornament. As traditions go, tomorrow Katie and I will be sleeping under the big tree. She is calling it our "Polar Express Party." Hey, whatever will get her to sleep better, it doesn't matter what she calls it. She's real excited for Christmas and is very hopefully for the Strawberry Shortcake playset. I just hope Santa remembers. I guess we'll have to wait and see.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Energy Wanted!

Okay, so I think I need to start taking some of that energy drink. School's only been out for the Christmas Holiday for 3 days and I'm ready to send Katie back to school. Is that wrong? She just loves to push my buttons and aggravate her brother to the point of insanity. She loves pushing my buttons because she'll ask me if I have any more left. When I tell her there might be one more left, she'll take her finger and press it on either my leg or arm. It's as if to say I've pressed your last button. I'm busily decorating the house for the big event. I am down to only one present to wrap and the baking has begun. Shew! I'm tired.

Tomorrow, I've got to finish my door decoration (hanging lights & ornaments)and begin making Christmas Bon-Bons. I plan to make the glass stained sugar cookies this year, but kind of going at it blindfolded. I finally purchased the small cookie cutters today for 1/2 off at Hobby Lobby. I've always wanted to make them. They look so pretty and festive. We'll see how they turn out. I bought plenty of chocolate chip cookie dough because it is the favorite in the family, especially Katie and myself. She still wants to make a few cut out Christmas cookies, so I made sure to get some meringue powder for the icing and food coloring.

Millard and Peggy picked up Katie tonight to spend the night with them. They are planning to go see "Tangled" the new Disney movie. According to the previews, it looks like it would be very funny. I'm glad she'll get to see it.

It appears that I need to apologize for one of my posts.  I received an unusual comment the other day about THIS POST.  Not catching my mistake, I was a bit confused.  I mentioned it to Doug and it prompted him to check it out.  Well, he brought it to my attention that I misspelled "caulk" and instead spelled it "cock".  OOPS!  I blame the late nights and the stress from exhausting long days. The person that made the comment didn't reveal himself or herself, I have a feeling I know who it was.  {Ahem}  However, I would hope you know what I meant, eventhough it is obvious I need to go back to school, be assured that I normally do a spell check on most of my post (just not this one).  HA!     


Sunday, December 19, 2010

Updates & A Christmas Craft

Remodeling Updates
I had to let you know that after church, Henry came out and helped Doug replace the trim above the cabinets. He has a nail gun, which made things much better for all of us. LOL! It didn't take much time to get all the trim up. Doug mentioned last night about going ahead and replacing all the trim down the hallway as well today, but I think I convenienced him to wait until after Christmas. It's not such a sore thumb like above the cabinets was. Henry and Doug did a great job! We had pizza for dinner, to celebrate. I should have taken a few pictures while they were nailing up the trim, but I was too busy running after Colton and decorating the house.

Millard and Peggy took Katie to church with them tonight because they were having their Christmas party with Santa Claus. Katie put on one of her special Christmas dresses, she was ready to remind Santa what she wants more than anything ~ a Strawberry Shortcake Playset. Later, Katie told me that she wasn't shy around Santa Claus. She wrote Santa a letter at school that I've got to take a picture and show you. It's cute.

With Henry and Doug working on the trim, Katie gone with Millard and Peggy and Colton taking a little nap, I got busy putting up Christmas. Oh, I can't wait to show you my front door display. I tried to copy Laura with her front door decoration, but with my own twist. I'm still working on it, but as soon as I'm finished I'll show you. I Love It! I didn't put out all of my Christmas decorations, but I finished around 5PM. I'll take pictures and have a Show and Tell very soon. We have a some old and a little new to share with you.

Christmas Craft
I am so planning on doing this craft with my children, but I wanted to make sure you saw this sweet ornament before Christmas was over. You still have time, so go out and do this ASAP.

Are these cute as a button or what? I just fell in love with them. The idea came from Eighteen25, in order to get the full instructions and to find out what materials you will need.  They are true works of art from your child. These small canvas of snow are actually your child's fingerprints. The rest you just draw with a toothpick. Very simple and easy. I plan to stop by Hobby Lobby tomorrow, in hopes to get some small canvas. Honestly, I didn't know they sold such things. As soon as we do ours, we absolutely share them with you.  If you decide to do these artsy paintings, please share them with us because I would love to see them. 

ND Band at Yankee Stadium Video

This is pretty awesome to watch!

Hawaii Band Formation of a Ball Being Kicked

Really Neat!



Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Friend's Party

This afternoon, we went to "J's" birthday party.  J is Katie's little ballet friend and they both go to the same school, us mom's hate it that they are not in the same class.  J turned 6 years old today and I believe both Katie and myself had a great time.  I got to catch up with one of our ballet moms that I haven't see in several months.  There was a house FULL of little girls.  It was so much fun watching those girls, dressing up, acting silly and playing games.  J is a big Barbie fan like Katie, so she had a Barbie themed party.  I loved the cake - heart shaped with Barbie figurine. 

Miss Hollywood - dressing up at the party

The birthday girl!

Happy Birthday J!

All the girls playing "Just Dance Kids" - a Wii game.  Katie loved playing this game, which I'm thrilled because we got her the same game for Christmas, except we got the "Just Dance".  I think it's going to be a hit.  BTW, Katie and little girl beside her danced their little booties' off.  LOL!

The girls playing Twister - Katie's in brown and pink - So funny!

We got to decorate the tree when we got home from J's birthday party - YAY!

Our little stinker!

Colton's mean look

Katie hanging ornaments

Doug told Colton to do the mean look again ~  HAHA! 


Updated Living Room

We're finished with the Living Room! I absolutely love it! We painted the walls Churchill Hotel Maple. The chair rails and door frame in Cream Delight. Once the paint completely dried, I went over the top half with lime wash to lighten it up and make it softer. It turned out so nice. Most of all, Doug really likes it. I don't know what it is about him. He starts out hating or thinks I'm crazy when I do a project. When it's complete, he ends up loving it.

This morning, we put all the furniture back. I wanted to take pictures right away, before the kids got ahold of the room and put their mark of existence in it.

Of course, we are not completely finished with the Kitchen and Living Room. I'm waiting until after Christmas to get our curtains for the Living Room. I'm going to need a valance in the Kitchen window, I might be borrowing my mother's sewing machine to make one. We were having problems with our trim in the above the cabinets, so Doug is having to replace the trim. We should have to done by next weekend, so I won't paint above the cabinets until this is fixed. We have tile picked out, but not purchased yet. It's pretty expensive, so we will wait until sometime this coming year, to install. I think the tile will add a lot to the Kitchen, so pretty and goes with the maple/cream perfectly.

The previous owners had filled the cracks between the trim & ceiling with cocking.  Now, the cocking is old and coming apart.  Thus, it looks awful!

Doug will have to replace all the trim from above the cabinets to down the hallway - YAY! (that was sarcastic)

A piece of new trim (goes all the way to the ceil - not a big crack)

We are hoping to replace our appliances within the next couple of years. Hopefully by that time, we can get Katie & Colton's rooms painted and re-decorated. Projects, projects.

Katie was so excited tonight because we actually got to decorate our family tree, along with her and Colton's personal Christmas trees.  Tomorrow, we'll try to get our snow village up.  We're just going to have to take it one day at a time.  I hope to get some baking started on Monday.  Do ya think it can be done?  We shall see. 

Tomorrow night, Katie is suppose to go to church with Grandma Peggy and Paw-Paw Millard.  Santa will be visiting the children.  I told Katie that she needed to make sure that he know exactly which Strawberry Shortcake playset she wants.  She told me, "but mom he already knows what I want."  I'm hoping she'll go, so I can catch up on some gift wrapping.  ;)