Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas morn

Emma is not a normal kid. She loves her sleep. When we were kids, we always got up before the sun on Christmas morning, ran to the living room to look at everything, yelled for mom and dad to wake up and then we'd sit in front of the fireplace, stockings in hand, waiting for them to come into the living room.
James got up around 7am Christmas morning, and I thought I was dreaming when I saw Bella walking around in my bathroom. Then James noticed something she left on the bathroom floor and was shocked. Not nice to discover unsightly things in the dark, especially not nice to step in them. Since she's a puppy and not completely house broken, she has a large crate that she sleeps in at night. Well, Santa being the comical guy he is, must have left the door to her kennel unlatched and she escaped in the night after we went to bed. I will spare you the gory details, but let's just say, she bombed the house in several places. James had every intention of coming back to bed and I had every intention of staying in bed till Emma woke up, but we had some cleaning to do. Emma didn't get up till about 8am, and she yelled from the living room "Santa brought me a backpack for my DS!" She wasn't excited that Santa had brought her the Nintendo DS she wanted, she was excited about the accessories. Silly kid. She was even more amused with the Bella story, and she said that Santa let her out because he was angry at her and James. They had been plotting to trap him the night before.
Stockings first, of course. She was so excited about everything she got in her stocking. I think stockings are my favorite thing to buy for.

She still had sleepy eyes and was telling us how she just knew Santa would give her neat things in her stocking. Santa really is funny. He gave her a gift card to PetSmart to pick out a hamster for herself and even gave her a nice habitat for it. I guess Santa didn't realize that we already had 2 dogs and 2 cats.
"You tricked me !" That's what she said when she opened the boots. Emma asked for very little this year, but had some very specific items. She wanted the hamster stuff and a DS from Santa and she wanted some winter boots with fur and fuzzy balls on them from us. They were SO hard to find in her size. Even online ! I looked and looked and when I'd find some that were just what she wanted, they would be her size on the display and look like they had been run over. I finally told Emma that she may not get some winter boots because we couldn't find them. She told me not to worry because Santa could find some. Durn ! No pressure ! Then I told her I found some but they were kind of ugly and not really what she wanted. She told me she would take the ugly ones. This kid really wanted some winter boots ! Finally, after a million calls to different stores, I found these boots at the last minute and they were half off. Even better. She was so happy.

Emma stopped halfway through opening presents and looked at us and said "I really am thankful", it was very sweet. Once she was done opening her presents she wanted to call Nonni (my mom) and Noni(James' mom), and tell them about her morning. Or so we thought. She really wanted to tell about Bella being out and she gave out the numerical amount of times the dog had relieved herself in the house. It doesn't take much to amuse a kid. Fine ! We were amused too !
Christmas morning was fun, but it wasn't long before we got busy again. It was time to prepare for Christmas dinner. The whole familia was coming over.

Christmas Eve

Wow ! What a whirlwind of events ! My house has been busy busy, but thankfully it's starting to calm down. We are so blessed and have had such a good time in the past week, even amidst the organized chaos. I have finally set up a Flickr account, and as soon as feasibly possible, I will post the pictures I took from the holidays. For now, I will share a few.

Do you think the animals have been feeling a little neglected ? James and I have been non-stop around the house planning for Christmas Day. Not to mention, we hosted a Sunday school party the Saturday before. So, we've been pretty busy with cleaning and cooking and wrapping, etc. etc. I finally sat down for a bit on Christmas Eve and Nalani decided she needed to be held. Now, Nalani is not a small creature. In fact, she was 110 at her last vet appointment a few months ago, and I'm pretty sure she's gotten wider since then ! She "snuck" into my lap and almost crushed the life out of me.

I think James and Emma checked the Santa tracker a hundred times before she actually fell asleep. After each time they looked, she would take off running around the house saying "I'd better get to sleep !" She'd run to her room and a few minutes later, she'd get up and find something else she needed to do. She almost forgot about leaving a treat for Santa. She decided since Santa was fat, he probably needed something healthy to eat, and he might need a snack for the reindeer. She left carrot sticks, fat free veggie dip, and a bottled water. What a little health nut.

And finally, she went out.....I don't know if she had visions of sugar plumbs dancing in her head, but she did look pretty sweet.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Tree Wrecks

So, James and I joked the other day that we were going to start our own website called "Tree Wrecks", a spin off of our favorite Cake Wrecks. Only our site would be all about horrible Christmas trees. You see, for the first time ever, I had a tree that ended up being a wreck from the day we got it home. It was a monster of a tree, and a pill to decorate, but I thought it was pretty. Don't ask me what we were thinking, but we actually believed the juvenile at the tree lot, and we never watered the thing. Now, I thought it was strange when he said we didn't need to give it water because of the flocking, but with all the hustle of this month, we literally forgot. I noticed it slowly sagging more and more every day, and each day I would come home and more ornaments would have slipped off the branches. Sad.
Working so hard on this monster, and being that I'm not much over 5 feet doesn't help !
It was still a work in progress at this point.

How could we forget this ! It truly was a wreck, but still humorous.
Now, I know it doesn't look THAT bad in this picture, but a good majority of the ornaments have fallen off by this point, not to mention there is actually no room under the tree. James thought it would be comical to keep the tree, but since this was our first Christmas in our house, I didn't want a sad tree. His plan was to strip what was left of the decor, and get another one. No such luck. Some of the ones at the store looked as sad as mine. Thankfully mom had a spare. Mom came over Friday night while we were gone and set up this beauty.
It is green, but mom improvised well. :)

Thursday, December 18, 2008


So....I'm having a pretty crummy day. I'm feeling extremely overwhelmed with work and our personal lives are just too busy as well. Thinking ahead, I don't know when I'll get a break. On top of it all, I've been the catch-all for a grumpy person I work with. I need some sleep and I need some humor to ease the stress. Here's my solution. You see, I'm really sleeping behind these bright eyes, but I'm going to fool everyone into thinking I'm awake !
Ha ha ! I'm way too clever for these people around here.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas 2007 re-visited

I can't believe that Christmas is only 8 days away. I'm excited and a little panicked at the same time. I haven't finished my shopping and I've barely wrapped any presents. All of which are usually done by now. On the other hand, I'm so excited about having every one over Christmas evening for dinner. My family is so much fun and we always have a great time when we are together. I was sitting here thinking about how fast the year has gone by, and how God has blessed us immensely over the past year. Occasionally I look at old pictures that I have stored away in my email and these are the ones I wanted to share.....
Remember this ? James was so clever with his proposal. Even though we had pretty much decided that we were getting married in April, he hadn't officially proposed and this is how he did it. Two simple words written on his hand with a black marker.... "Marry me"....that's all it said, and he didn't even have to ask. He knew the answer.
My crooked fingers.
More impressive....He went to JARED !! OOOOooooo, he did it all by himself. I was very impressed. I was shocked by what he chose for me to wear forever, and more so amused when he told me the chaos of getting the ring by Christmas. I won't give all the details, but it involved lying sales people, Italy and burning the store down(which didn't actually happen)....

And one more.....What a doll. I can't believe how much she has changed in a years time. She looks so grown up now. Our time on this planet is limited, and seeing pictures like this make me realize how we really need to absorb every second we can. Especially our time with our children.

God has already given us blessing for 2009 and we are excited and grateful. I can't wait!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Monday, December 15, 2008

Winter Wonder Slam

Friday night we went to the Winter Wonder Slam at the Toyota Center in Houston. It was awesome. There was a new artist named B.Reith, Family Force 5, Relient K, and TobyMac. I finally got to meet my cyber friend, the beautiful and talented Liz Jordan from the afternoon show on KSBJ. Such a sweet soul !
This was pre-show. We were practicing our screams (silent screams here). I told Emma she could scream as loud and as often as she wanted to, and she wouldn't get in trouble. She was loving that.
We have officially decided we have a head banger child. Emma says her new favorite band is Family Force 5, and she jumped up and down, and thrashed her hair the entire show.
She patiently waited to get a souvenir and this is what she picked....After a long night of dancing, screaming and a late night trip to IHOP, she wore herself out

A little snow please....

Or a lot of snow ! Well, for those of us that live in the Houston area, it was a lot fo snow ! Sad, I know, but we were so excited.

It was really coming down pretty good ! It was pretty hard to see when we were on the road, and even though we were only going about 5 mph, we started sliding turning into the driveway.My parents back yard.

This is dads boat. It was completely full of snow, which was really cool. Emma was making snow angels on the front deck of the boat.

She was just a little cold. We played more after we got home. It was so pretty and bright outside. I was amazed. The dogs were frolicking too. I can't wait for the next one !

Friday, December 12, 2008

TobyMac tonight !!

"T T T-o-b, T-o-b-y-M-a-c, TobyMac, TobyMac, Have a TobyMac attack !!"

So....that's a little cheer that has been stuck in my head ever since KSBJ had their Cheer for Toby contest. They had people call in and do a cheer that they made up and then they won tickets to the Winter Wonder Slam. (I think thats the gist of it anyways). Well, I heard plenty of cheers, but one morning on the way to Emma's school, she and I heard that particular cheer and it pops in our heads contantly ! She was singing it this morning. We are super excited about tonight !

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Can you believe it ??!! I'll post more pictures tomorrow and tell all about our awesome night ! It's late and I'm cold and ready for bed !! :)

When I Grow Up

A Librarian

A Veteranarian

Or, a lady that rides the elephants in the circus.

Yes, these are the things that Emma wants to be when she grows up. Hey, we all need dreams

Let me be sappy please....

This morning one of my oldest girlfriends and I were emailing back and forth about our kids and Christmas. We had been sharing what our kids will be getting this year and talking about the importance of instilling the true meaning of Christmas in our children. We had been saying it seems that no matter what we get for our kids, it never seems like enough. I am guilty of feeling this way, even though I have learned how to stop buying. Our children are so blessed and have everything they could ever need. My girlfriend said some things to me that just made sense....She writes

.......my thoughts are, you do what you can and our children are so blessed. There is something to be said for living it up and soaking up every experience you can....you never know when circumstances can change. As long as you teach your kids appreciation and have them give back and do volunteer work, always reminding them of those less fortunate, it really isn't spoiling."

Now I know that technically it IS spoiling, but as parents, it's natural for us to want to give the world to our kids. It's hard to help feeling that way. Emma is spoiled. She has every thing and there is nothing she needs. She has too much, but on the flip side of that, she's a very loving child. She is such a nurturer and has always been that way. She wants to hold every baby she can and take care of it. She's most of the time very thoughtful when it comes to others. (I say most of the time because she fights with her cousin like its her sister) She's very thankful for what she has as well.
The other night we went to see my Great Grandma. She is 92 1/2 years old and is close to going home to the Lord. My Grandma had been wanting us to come sing to her, but on this particular visit, this wasn't the plan. We sat around in the kitchen while Emma was in the bedroom with Grandma. She has a baby monitor in her room because she needs someone most of the time, but at some point, you have to leave the room. We could hear Emma talking to Grandma over the baby monitor, and she was so sweet. She kept asking Grandma if she wanted us to come sing to her. A few minutes later, Emma came and got us and said "Go sing!". Thankfully, there was a guitar at my Great Aunt's house, and after a quick tune up, we headed into Grandma's room. James played the guitar, and he and I sang to her. This was very hard for me to do. I seem to be more emotional these days, but in this situation it was especially hard. It was even harder when Emma climbed on the bed behind me, put her arms around my neck, and was singing into my ear "And we cry Holy, Holy, Holy. Is the Lamb". I felt so proud in that moment. It was so precious to me. It was so important to Emma that we should fulfill the wishes of our Grandma. After this, Emma kept telling Grandma that it was ok, and she could close her eyes and get some sleep. My heart swelled so big that night, and I've said all along that one of Emma's God given gifts was a gift of service to others. She really proved herself this night.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Too cool !!

Ok, I know I'm a super dork, but I love stuff like this....
I love technology !

The Woodlands

Saturday evening we met some of our family, that we maybe see once a year, in The Woodlands. It was a lot of fun. We met at Landry's to eat an early dinner, and from there we headed out into the cold. Our plan was to take the water taxi tour, but it wasn't running at the time, so we walked a pretty good distance to the trolley stop. The trolley was by far my favorite. We were packed in their like sardines and picked up lots of people on our long trip. We picked up one lady that insisted we all sing. We had already been singing before she got on there, but she was a high spirited lady, that wanted to lead the group. I think she had indulged in too many spirits actually :) The christmas lights were so pretty. I haven't been to The Woodlands in years and I had no idea they had ashopping center of that magnitude. With all the high dollar cars and high dollar stores, I felt just a little bit fancy even being there. We didn't shop though.
Here we are on the San Francisco treat.
These horse statues are outside P.F. Changs and I thought they were so neat. I took plenty of pictures of them. Emma loved climbing on them, which made me nervous.

We finally got a water taxi ride, and it proved to be a great source of entertainment. The driver REALLY loved his job, which made it much more enjoyable. I can't wait to go back next year !

Taft Art Market

Saturday was a big day for us. Mom, Emma, and I got up Saturday morning and drove into Houston to check out the Taft Art Market. It was held at Ecclesia Church in Houston and it was super neat. It was like a miniature "Etsy", but without the shipping costs, or waiting period to get your goods ! I got a lot of neat ideas for things I could make and even made a few purchases. Emma made a Christmas card and a Christmas tree in a bottle and she was not happy when it was time to go.

I was very intrigued by Ecclesia Church based solely on the appearance of the building. It was very "us" and we are eager to check it out. They had the neatest paintings on the wall. I guess they belonged to the church, but they could've been for sale ! I didn't think to ask ! This particular painting was my favorite. I think it described perfectly the transformation of being born again and molded in Christ's image. That's what I got out of it anyways. I guess it's a matter of opinion. Isn't it beautiful ?

From the art market, we walked a few blocks back to the car, but were sidetracked by the Texas Junk Co. (I think that was the name). I have been looking for an old vintage chair for my bedroom, and they had one on the sidewalk. We went in hoping to find more, but that was the only on they had. What they DID have was frames and boots, and lots of them ! I've never seen this many boots in all my life. I thought they were really cool, even though I was a little freaked out being in there. I know junk shops hold many treasures, but I've always had a slight phobia of them. I'm weird. I had to snap some pictures to share because I am still amazed at how much stuff this place had.

So cool !!!

We headed home to get the boys, and headed to The Woodlands.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Hot Dr. Pepper

I guess I just assumed that everyone has heard of hot Dr. Pepper, but apparently not. I was just sitting here wishing I had some Dr. Pepper and lemons. For those of you that have never tried it, don't turn your nose up just yet. It is quite a treat, and we have been drinking it since I was a kid. It's so easy to make too. Just boil the Dr. Pepper in a sauce pot, and pour over thinly sliced lemon. So good !

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Meet Bella....

Not much to say really. She's an 8 week old boxer. Super precious and she's mine. It's already a circus around here, so what's one more clown, right ??


On a tree hunt.....We went on a hunt for the perfect tree this past weekend. I have a soft spot for flocked trees. I always wanted one growing up, but my mom doesn't like them. Neither does James, but because he's so sweet, he's ok with getting one. He ended up picking out a monster of a tree. We had to wait a couple of days to get it because the flocking had to dry.

Not sure what this is..... Grrr.....super cute....James diligently worked on getting the tree level in the stand. It had a slight lean to it, but we chalked it up to a slightly misshapen tree. I spent about 4 hours decorating it, and something happened to me that's never happened before....It fell over !!! I was almost done ! It was pretty hilarious and I was a little surprised that only a handful of ornaments broke. There was flocking everywhere and James saw the whole thing from afar. He said it was in slow motion. I still haven't finished the tree, so it may be a few days before you see the finished product.