Photo 366

Not sure how it happened or when, but I'm truly upset that somewhere along the way my photos got behind in the numbers. I am pretty much certain that every day is covered but I will be upset if when I go back to renumber them and update the blog (for printing purposes only) that I find one missing. UGH..
ANYHOO - found it only fitting that today's and this year's last picture be one of the very lazy teenager who has consistently been sleeping 12+ hours each night. Today, he woke up at around 1:00 sporting this great little hair-do.

That's what happens when you sleep the day away!

I enjoyed completing this blog this year and plan to do it again next year. It was a very rewarding task for me; however, this blog will be no longer updated since I don't want to confuse years or anything. I want to keep the years seperate for my own personal anal reasons, lol!

Look for a link to the new blog on my main blog tomorrow!


Photo 365

Olivia just loves this spot in the kitchen where the sun shines in almost all day this time of year. She looks so relaxed and calm while contently playing with her ragged toy.

What she DOES NOT KNOW is that on Saturday my Christmas present will arrive.

A miniature beagle boy pup.

I wonder how often I'll catch her relaxed and calm basking in the sun after that? :)


Photo 364

House cleaning today - agenda 1 - purge magazines - agenda 2 - read them all before purging, lol!


Photo 363

Kaitlyn was so sweet to think of me for Christmas. She spent a few days with Mom prior to Christmas and one day while shopping she wanted to buy me flowers for Christmas. She couldn't find 'Christmas' colored ones, so she went with pink instead. I think they look just lovely with my wintery white kitchen table centerpiece...so sweet of her!


Photo 362

My December daily album is very full indeed...needs more like 3 inch rings...


Photo 361

Pacho has a new friend that wears beanies! He's got a few different names floating around, but he's still very loved.
Edited to add that we finally establish a permanent name: Paulo


Photo 360

A sweet moment amidst opening presents occured today: Kaitlyn thanking God for this day...love that she paused in the midst of everything to remember something so very important!


Photo 359

Christmas eve was spent at Mom's house. I loved seeing all her little vignettes of the Christmas decorations I grew up with. I especially loved seeing her little cupid doll and tree that is a look that is so popular now. I grew up with it in the house every Christmas and now I just love seeing that it's back in style. Even if it's a little vintage...it's still something that reminds me of mom when I see things like this.


Photo 358

The presents wrapped and waiting underneath the tree...all is calm and bright (oh, except for 3 boys playing video games upstairs after bringing all the presents down!)


Photo 357

10 more days of photos left to finish out the year. Yeah!

Here's a shot of one of the ornaments added to the big tree downstairs this year. It was lovingly picked out by my children (mainly Kaitlyn who loves all things sparkly) and hangs in the front of the tree so everyone can see...and it's just for me, thus the "r". :)


Photo 356

Kaitlyn and LeAnna sang Happy Birthday, Jesus at tonight's Christmast program. They did a WONDERFUL job!


Photo 355

Tried this recipe today - very good.


Photo 354

Christmas cards FINALLY addressed and ready to go after having them sit on my desk for a week. YIPPEE!


Photo 353

I got a wild hair last night before church and thought I'd make 2 different cookies. One of them was this one. While it's a very pretty cookie, and I actually like the part covered in the white chocolate (I did 2 different kinds - one covered in peppermints and one covered in peppermint bark), the cookie itself is just not great. I just haven't found a great stand alone chocolate cookie yet. I guess it might be in part because I just don't LIKE chocolate cookies? WHO knows...

The other recipe is one that I tried last year and like. A dressed up cookie dough - you add in several different spices to the chocolate chip cookie dough mix and then bake it up and press a hershey kiss in the middle, except this time I used hugs...it's good and a quick keeper that I'm glad I remade.
And I WOULD be sharing some pictures of my December Daily album but with the dreary, weary weather lately, it's all I can do to get a semi-decent shot of the things I HAVE taken pictures of...so it'll have to wait until better lighting days.


Photo 352

I'm closing in on the last few days of the year for this blog. I'm so glad that this is something I did this year. I have a years worth of pictures and a years worth of memories recorded that I'm very anxious to see printed in book form.

ANYHOO - on to the picture for today.

Kaitlyn made the most ADORABLE sock snowman in class today. Their class mom is VERY creative and always has the best crafts for them to do.

:) definitely makes me look bad...seriously folks...she's got it going on. Healthy, tall, skinny, organized, sweet, creative, girl scouts troop leader, room mom, has 2 children, does all this AND is finishing up college for her teaching degree. hmmm....wonder what she CAN'T do?


Photo 351

Today was creating day for me...created bag toppers for Kaitlyn's gifts to her class...reindeer noses and food. Created 2 notebooks for Kaitlyn and Zachary's teachers as well. Can I just say that I love my little Slice? It's a great little tool to have on hand when you can't find an alphabet or flower to match what you need.



Photo 350

I had Kaitlyn sit down and make a small wish list for Christmas today. The boys did their's on Saturday and I wanted to just SEE what she was wanting...I'm glad I did.


Photo 349

I was so thankful to get to spend my evening with friends celebrating my birthday (turning the pivotal steady into middle age point) at Chili's. It was a great evening and here's some of my stuff from my birthday weekend. Lots of cards from the kids and friends, as well as a few other very special gifts that I'll treasure and enjoy.


Photo 348

My unexpected present from Thomas and the kids...he listened...he's the best...and I certainly will enjoy it!


Photo 347

Brandon's newest aquirement/alternate personality/friend is the sock monkey stolen from Kaitlyn named Pacho. Like nachos, only better. Pacho talks to us frequently.

Today he wanted to take over the world wide web (www... ha ha) and decided that would pose rather elegantly with the packages of multiple cookies and NAVEL oranges and apples that I had to buy today so that we wouldn't look stupid just giving people orange. Yep...that Pacho...such a goof off.

But, it isn't he cute...at least when the hands and voice behind him aren't being so absolutely incredibly obnoxious. Yes, that would be Brandon...obnoxious.
Especially today...and right now...while he's trying to tell me what to type and making Pacho poke me in the ear...yep...



Photo 346

We finally got the gingerbread house put together yesterday afternoon with the icing gluing the sides together drying overnight. We decorated it tonight; however...the icing from last night needed additional water added to it...me thinks it was a BIT too runny. NONE of my decorations would sit on it. But it sure does look snowy, huh?

Kaitlyn told me it looked nothing like the picture and that ours never does. Zachary said that Duff off of Ace of Cakes would NEVER hire me.

THANKS a lot, kiddos. You SURE know how to make a mom feel great! :)


Photo 345

I purchased this advent calendar at Target in hopes that we could accomplish something daily with the kids. So far, so good...although I'm sure somewhere along the way something will be missed or not be able to be done. It's the process that counts, though!


Photo 344

After a lot of busts, I finally made a cookie that was just 'okay' - not great, but good enough to take with me to the 6th annual Cookie Exchange Party at Tammy's house.

Butterscotch Oatmeal Chippers


Photo 343

Today was Zachary's official 11th birthday. We celebrated the evening with my cousin Jamie and his wife Renee who were in town for the weekend. It was a quiet family evening with the requested 'lemon-glazed' cake.


Photo 342

Kaitlyn and I went to see the Radio City Christmas Spectacular at the Opryland Hotel today with the Girl Scout troops across the city. It was a great show that they put on, but my favorite part was the very dramatic and touching nativity scene at the end. They closed the show out with what they narrated as being the most important part of the season. I agree with them. Most definitely...just as the narrator said. This season is because of a man that only lived 33 years, never traveled more than 200 miles from his birthplace, spoke to the comman man, yet touched and changed all of our lives so dramatically that we still celebrate his birth thousands of years after his death. No other man will ever come close to being as great and magnificent as our Lord is. No man...nothing compares. Nothing.

In saying all of that...here's a picture of one of my favorite Christmas things I made last year.


Photo 341

Taking the gifts to the Angel Tree right now...after prayers were said for each person.


Photo 340

Zachary's birthday party was tonight. There were 16 kids not including adults and the majority were boys between 9-11. CRAZY. Seriously.

Anyhoo...here's a birthday cake pic.


Photo 339

I made my December Daily album on the 1st...I didn't exactly finish all the page basics like Ali suggested, but I had enough done to get me started. When I get time, I'll do more basic backgrounds so that I'll be able to easily add stuff in when I get time to print and journal.

This is something I'm excited to do simply for this reason alone. While cleaning out my 'album' box that is still stored, I found my Christmas album I made shortly after moving into the house we had built on Setter Court. It had all these neat little stories about the kids and their traditions and our decorations. It was definitely a nostalgic moment and I hope that each year we look at this one we feel the same way!


Photo 338

Got SOME decorations out...now on to the dining room, upstairs (kid's decorations) and the trees.


Photo 337

I just LOVE this little baby of mine...and she always loves me, too...no matter what!


Photo 336

I had extra cupcake batter left0ver yesterday and made some mini-cupcakes. We picked up LeAnna from school today and I let the girls ice mini-cupcakes for snacks. YUM!