happily ever after: 2009

Friday, December 25, 2009

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!

We got some snow last weekend. Not very much, but it was still beautiful.

The next day we took a family drive up north to find enough of that snow to have some fun.

My guys, so handsome.

The lake was totally freezing, and Calvin thought it would be fun to throw his brother in. Such love.

Me and my Sweetie. And Calvin tryin' to kill us.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

One Fine Day

After being sick off and on again for about a week, it was SO nice to wake up this morning, feeling MUCH better.

After a lazy morning laughing with Sweetie in bed, then a warm cup of java from my favorite Christmas mug. I sat in the sunroom with my laptop while Dave sat on the sofa with me using HIS laptop. That's right, as if we weren't obnoxious enough with three laptops, Sweetie's mom sent a laptop with him on his last trip to give to the Davester. It needed some serious tweakin', but Dave is one happy little computer nerd now, just like the rest of us.

After making the family breakfast and sending Sweetie off to work, the boys and I scrambled to get ready and out the door in time for Science class. I dropped the boys off and sped (er, I mean, drove the slow speed limit) to the mall to get finished up with my Christmas shopping. I love being at the mall during Christmas season during the middle of the week, right when it opens, when no one else is there. So festive and happy.

I was only 20 minutes late picking up the boys, but I did finally settle on the perfect gift to get my mom, and that WAS the most important task for the day. We just had a couple of stops to finish for my Dad's present, then a trip to the library.

We made a run through McDonald's only to find them OUT OF DIET COKE!!!! 'Excuse me??? Isn't that un-American?' I asked the lady through the drive-thru speaker. She didn't think I was very funny. So we got our cheeseburgers and drove to Sonic where they DID have diet coke. Very American, that Sonic place.

After dropping the boys at home to finish their schoolwork. I got to go play organization with Theresa. After about 30 minutes of organizing, we decided what we really needed was a trip to town to go shopping. That's how I know I should not take this up as my future employment, I always end up shopping.

Fast forward to a yummy crock pot dinner with the family in the 'fancy dining room', and Sweetie announcing that he was taking us to Goodberry's after dinner. He's the best! First we had to stop by the Albright's to pick up Sweetie's truck, only to find a dead deer in the back of it, gross. We decided NOT to take the truck just then, what with all the blood dripping out of the back. Nice. We were then off to take the boys to Target to shop for Christmas presents for one-another.

It was one of those perfect days, of way too much fun stuff, that feels even more fun because you've been feeling sick for a few days and finally feelin' better.

Hope y'all are enjoying this Joyous Season.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Merry Christmas!!!!

from Sweetie, Dena, Calvin, Dave & Rudolph

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sunday Thankfulness

1. That my Sweetie is home, safe & sound.

2. Waking up to a cold & drizzly morning.

3. Getting to live in such a beautiful home, that is warm and cozy.

4. Sweetie's leadership in our family, he was missed this week.

5. Belonging to such a precious family of God.

6. Wonderful teaching today in Sunday School.

7. Visiting with friends during lunch.

8. A perfect naptime, with sounds of my boys watching the football game downstairs.

9. Nice neighbors that didn't shoot our dog when he came into their yard.

10. Hot cocoa and a Christmas movie.

Friday, December 11, 2009

A Christmas Meme

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
All year long I use bags and tissue paper, and sometimes paper towels. But Christmas is all about the boxes and what I can disguise in that box. Too much fun, with ribbon that I don't have to 'curl' but can just tie in a bow. And don't really like tags, so I just use sharpie markers and write on the paper.

2. Real or Fake Tree?
Real, but worry too much about the thing combusting in the middle of the night, so I hardly turn the lights on. I ask each year, 'fake or real?' and get out-voted by my guys, all three of them.

3. When do you put up the tree?
Because we get a real tree, it's normally around the first week of December, so it doesn't get too dried out.

4. When do you take the tree down?
Normally I'm aching to take it down on the day after Christmas but again, I'm out-voted and we take it down on New Year's Day.

5. Do you like eggnog?
Sadly, yes, not from scratch, but from the little carton and I prefer the 'light' and not with alcohol and after a couple days I toss the rest, WAY too many calories!
Plus, Calvin always kinda ruins it for me cuz he likes to recount the story of when he drank too much and chucked it up later that night. Good memories.

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
Our stereo, my sister and I got a stereo for Christmas and our parents sent us on a hunt for it, with little notes sending us everywhere, it was finally in the scary shed in the back yard. Too much fun.

7. Do you have a nativity scene?
Yes, two. One that my mama got me before I was even married, that is small and rustic and wooden and has lived through Thing One and Thing Two and countless friends' children, there are only two wisemen left to worship Jesus and only a couple of sheep, but still, it's cute. And then my mama got me the Willow Tree set, getting me a part of it every year. It's complete now, and I think she misses how easy it was to buy for me back then.

8. Hardest person to buy for?
My brother in law. The dude has everything cool, and has great taste. Though he's thrilled to get the year subscription to Redbook and Ladies Home Journal, did I just say that out loud? oops, it was suppose to be a secret.

9. Easiest person to buy for?
I'd say my boys, but I have to put forth a lot of effort in buying for them, a LOT of effort in HOLDING BACK so that I don't over spend on them. Easiest and mostest-funnest person to buy for is my sister.

10. Worst Christmas gift you ever got?
One year Sweetie got me new towels for our bathroom. We were poor and we needed them and I was thankful, but secretly, really REALLY sad. :o(

11. Mail or email Christmas cards?
Um, snail-mail. I love a good Christmas card.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?
oh-my-goodness...sooooo many to choose from......the cute newer version of Miracle on 34th Street has to be on the TV on Thanksgiving Day. I have to sit through White Christmas at some point. It's a Wonderful Life, still makes me cry and want to sit up and shout for joy. Any and all of the frivolous romantic Christmas movies that are on TV during the season.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
Should I have started that already? Dang it!

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
Can you say 'guilt'?, I've got the good old 'guilt' thing going really bad. I could NEVER do that!

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Fudge & Eggnog, don't know why my pants are tighter. Geesh!

16. Colored or clear lights on the tree?
Clear, but I do love those nostalgic colored lights. They make me all warm and fuzzy inside.

17. Favorite Christmas song?
'O Little Town of Bethlehem' and 'Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer', come on you know you love that one!

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?
I love to be home, but I do miss our families and all that tradition. Christmas Eve party-hardy with Sweetie's family into the night. Then waking up Christmas Day at my parents house with my family. So much fun and so much love.

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer?
On Dasher, On Dancer, On Prancer and Vixon, On Comet, On Cupid, On Donner and Blitzen, oh and that red nosed guy... Rudolph (I couldn't, I totally stole this from Crayola Lady)

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?
Used to be this really scary lookin' angel that freaked Sweetie out, now it's a plain light up star that I got at K-Mart years ago.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?
One package Christmas Eve (always jammies) and the rest on Christmas morning, starting with the stockings.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of year?
Crowds, gettin' the 'I Wants!', and grumpy-bah-hum-buggers.

23. What do you enjoy most about Christmas?
The excitement in my children, they are still so cute.

24. How did you find out about Santa?
Find out what about Santa?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Baking Christmas Cookies 101

Every year, Sweetie asks me to bake a bunch of cookies to give to our customers. It's something that the previous owner of our company did and, well, I guess it's tradition.

So yesterday I braved the Walmart and got all the basics. And today, I woke up early, pulled on my big stretchy black sweat pants, added a red top, slipped on my Easy Spirit tennies and donned my Christmas apron. It's all about the outfit.

It helps that it's totally freezin' outside and rainy. I started the oven to heatin' and turned on the stereo for some Bing, Frank, and Martin to serenade me some Christmas tunes.

I hadd 2 cups of coffee to get me through the first two batches, then I move onto the hard stuff, a glass of milk. I always start to feel sick at about the half-way point and start intensely drowning myself in water. My theory is that if you drink a bunch of water while you're eating...er...I mean samplin' cookies, then the calories won't stick to your butt. Don't look at my butt as an example, I'm not the best test case scenario.

Recipes stacked up, ready to choose and follow. Some new, some old.

You'll need all your baking tubs out with the basics within easy reach.

You'll HAVE to have one of these babies, this one was my grandmother's....it's wanting to quit on me, but I won't let it. Just this morning I had Calvin take it out to the garage and make some tweeks on it, it's working perfectly now, thank you very much.

You'll want to fill your sink with hot sudsy water. Makes for easy clean up.

Make your stations; one for cookie sheet loading.

And one for cookie sheet cooling.

You'll need plenty of taste testers, I just happen to have three willing victims, that are brutally honest. Sorry I have no pictures of them, as they were sneaky about their testing and I couldn't catch them until all that was left was crumbs on their chins.

And then you'll have to have a Sweetie that loves you to bring you some good food for lunch, so you won't just eat sweets all day.

Somewhere between the 7th and 8th batch, you'll need to go collapse in bed for awhile and hold some smelling salts over your nose. That's me today, sometime before lunch everything kinda went south and I ended up in bed for the remainder of the day. Nice.

But in the end, it will all be worth it. I don't make anything too difficult or fancy, just scrumptious. I'll have to work hard this year so there will be something left for Santa and his reindeer, last year he got stale wheat thins and some very questionable egg nog. Ugh, don't even say 'egg nog' right now, my gut can't take it.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Here, Let Me Take Your Coat


come on in.

Here, let me take your coat.

I'll put on a pot of water to boil in the kettle and we can sit ourselves down for a chat over some tea.

Go pick yourself out a tea bag while I grab the mugs.

I think I'll have a chai tea with a splash of milk.

Please, find yourself a comfy chair and put your feet up.

"Boy it sure is chilly out there.

I hope the weather holds for tomorrow.

I do love a cold Thanksgiving Day, perfect crisp air to have the turkey roasting in the oven and play a good game of football in the backyard."

Speaking of football in the backyard, my guys just came in from a romping game and this is my baby. Big Lug gave him a knee to the nose. Nice. (Big Lug = Calvin)

Well, time to get dinner in the oven. Thanks so much for stopping by, do come again, anytime.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Welcome to Our Home

Yes, we got the country house. I mean how could we resist. The boys fell in love with the yard, all three of them. And I fell in love with the front porch and sunroom.

Many helped us move in. My sister flew in that night and the remainder of her visit was spent having fun unpacking and getting things done.

Then my parents flew in for more helpful days and fun.

It is slowly becoming home.

God has been good to us. And we could not have done this without the love of faithful friends and wonderful family. We love you guys!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

I'm Busy Right Now, Please Leave a Message After the Beep

I can't blog right now, I'm too busy organizing the hall closet. Must run to staples and get more label tape.

Will be back this week, I promise. With pictures. Try to control your excitement.

Friday, November 6, 2009


So we recently moved. We now live in a neighborhood. We were a little nervous about living in a neighborhood.

On our second day we were driving out of the driveway when three ladies walked up and wanted to meet us. They brought us goodies and a map. A map that had all the houses around us with the neighbors names and their phone numbers. Precious.

Two days after that we got another package on the porch, goodies and a homemade card with a welcoming message from another neighbor and their phone number as well.

We think we're gonna like this neighborhood thing.

Then two days ago, a neighbor got a little overly friendly by taking up camp on our front porch. This is getting a little ridiculous.

Would you like another picture? Here you go.

There is something seriously wrong with this. If I wasn't so dog-gone tired, I'd demand that we move.

But at least he decorated for Christmas.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

One Last Time

As we locked the door today one last time, I had the boys sit on the steps so I could take one last picture of them on these steps. These precious steps.