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Thursday, December 31, 2009


Guess what we woke up to? Yep, that's right another blanket of snow. I think I'm starting to see a pattern here. That's fine with me...I love snow! And, ironically enough, each time it's snowed, I have been at home for the day (either the weekend or I was scheduled off). Thought I'd share some pics from today...

A great visit!

Yesterday, Duffy's cousins Craig and Eric were passing through as they returned from a day of snowboarding. It was so good to see them and catch up. We had a lot of fun! We spent time with good food and reminiscing.

The three of them went through some wings!

Sounds like lots of plans have been put in place for 2010. We're looking forward to it! ;)

The H-town 2010 planning committee
Ha! =)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas memories....

I had to share this! As I was preparing to leave work for the holiday last week I was talking with someone who made me really think about memories. Now you should know that this someone has a way of doing that - making us think...so I shouldn't be surprised. Anyway, on with the story.

She said that this year as she celebrated Christmas with her now grown children, she was going to ask each of them to share their favorite Christmas present - both one they've given and one they've received. Easy enough, right? Well, she went on to share hers and it brought tears to my eyes. You see the favorite gift she ever gave was to her Mom. When she was young, her family didn't have excess, they 'got by', like a lot of us. One year her Mom mentioned she really liked a particular spice rack but it cost $14 and wasn't something that was in her budget. So, my friend started saving. Although young and for sure $14 was a lot of money, she baby sat and worked and saved every penny. She was finally able to buy that rack and to give it to her Mom for Christmas. In a later conversation, she said that her sister reminded her that when her Mom left this world that spice rack was still in the kitchen in use!

The best present she ever received was a sweater. Seems simple, huh? But you see, she and her husband were raising 2 small children on one salary. Having 'fancy' clothes wasn't a priority for her considering that the work she was doing was at home. However, this year they were invited to a holiday gathering and she wasn't sure what she'd wear. Her husband brought this sweater home which happened to match her favorite pair of 'dress' pants.

I'm not sure exactly why this story touched me so much except that it reminds me that it's the simple things. AND it's not always the things, most of the point of this story is the meaning behind each gift. It's about making lasting memories.

When I started to think how'd I'd answer this question I came up with the favorite gift I've received pretty quickly. Don't get me wrong, there's been many that are memorable - times when I was small, presents from the kids (the angel ornament they made, my wonderful presents this year), but the one that stood out the most is from Duffy. It's important that you know that Duffy isn't a present buyer, but the year of our 10th anniversary he really out did himself. He came home on Christmas eve with a beautiful 3 stone anniversary band. I loved it and still do. But it's so much more than a sparkling ring to me, it's the fact that he went to the effort to go to the jeweler, pick out the stones and have it made just for me. Again...it's about the meaning.

Sadly, I don't know what the favorite gift I've given is. It makes me kinda sad to admit that. I want to do better at making memories with people. Giving things that make people realize the meaning that's behind it.

So, how 'bout you? Do you have an answer?

P.S. - Thanks for sharing JC!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Year's Resolutions

So I'm hoping if I publish these I'll be more dedicated to sticking to them. Here's my list (hopes!):
  • I hope to do at least one house chore a night. I'm pretty good about keeping up with things around here, but sometimes I try to cram all of the 'real' cleaning into one day. Let's just say it doesn't bring out the best in me! ha!
  • I hope to cook more. Oh goodness! I wrote it, God help me! But I really would like to (I think) ;)
  • I hope to be more adventurous. gulp! I'm not quite sure exactly what I mean - but truth is I'm pretty conservative when it comes to taking risks, so almost anything would be an improvement.
  • and finally, I hope to find a church that I like and feel 'at home' in. (Duffy - this might be your assignment! :))
I think I could go on and on but I don't want to set myself up to fail. Ha!

So, how 'bout you? What are your resolutions?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

7 short days later...

What a difference a week can make! Last week at this time, we were snowed in (well not quite, but close)

And today you'd never believe all that snow was ever here!

And inside too. A week ago...

and now...

ahhhh, back to normal!

So after all the Christmas decorations were packed away nice and tidy waiting for next year, we decided to take advantage of the sunshine and go for a drive. We ended up riding to the spot on the river where we put the boat in. The water was really high and rushing, but really pretty. The 'boys' love being near the water. They haven't been on the boat just yet but I just know they'll love it!

And the views were nothing short of spectacular!

Before we went home, we stopped to grab some carry out - the 'boys' and I were 'boring' (Ha! Luanne) waiting in the car so we took some pictures. Love them!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

And that's a wrap....for now

Tonight we celebrated Christmas with the kids. The older they get the harder it gets to get them the things they want and like. But, I think their gifts were a success this year. Every year I take a picture of them by the tree. For some reason it was a challenge to get them all looking, eyes open and smiling this time...so, this one is my favorite. Yes, Jake is OVER smiling and being silly - but it's so him to do that! =)

Oh yeah, my gifts from the kids? Well, I got a beautiful red dress that I've had my eye on...love that they pay attention :), a watch and a great sign. See, I love signs, the ones that you put around the house that remind you of positive thoughts. This one is a quote from Dumbo...it says, 'The very things that hold you down are going to carry you up'. Isn't that great?! Love it. Here's a peek at my watch...

I figured I sneak in one more pic of me and Duffy before the tree and decorations are packed away until next year.

I'm so hoping for the energy and motivation to hit the ground running in the morning. I would love to have the Christmas stuff packed up and the house back in order. Shew, I'm ready for a break!

We had a great Christmas and we're looking forward to celebrating the holiday with Jim's Mom, Dad and Grandma in January, but for now....is it really bad for me to say I'm glad it's behind me? Well if it is, sorry...but I really am! =) Bring on the new year!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

The big day is here! The day started off quiet for us but celebrating got in full swing by the afternoon. We enjoyed a delicious dinner at my aunt's home! Many thanks to Aunt Alma for spending much of her Christmas day preparing for us!

It was fun to visit with everyone and catch up with our cousin from California.

Tomorrow we'll celebrate with the kids. It's a tradition for them to open their presents from us the day after Christmas. A perfect ending to the holiday!

We hope you enjoyed your day and that Santa fulfilled all of your wishes!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Let the holiday begin!

Merry Christmas Eve! Today was a crazy day, trying to finish up last minute shopping, tidying up around the house and putting the final touches on everything.

In the midst of that shuffle, I was blessed with some pretty amazing presents from Julie, Jon and Jake! It amazes me that they're so grown up in so many ways. Weren't they just little yesterday? Excited and waiting for Santa? Now here they're playing Santa for themselves. (I'll share more about the details in the next couple of days!)

The day was rounded out by visiting with Daddy, Linda, Jaime, Drew and Lauren. It was great to see everyone and to spend time with Lauren. She's grown up a lot in a year!

She even tried on her ballerina outfit for us to see!

She's soooo cute!

Great start to celebrating Christmas!

Merry Christmas y'all!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Snow anyone?

We've got 19 inches and counting! And we're quickly approaching 24 straight hours of steady snow fall...it's amazing!

It's really pretty out there! Here's a few pictures from today...

Oh yeah, and the furry boys are loving this. They plow right through and can't wait to be out in it.

Gonna try to stay warm for the rest of the evening!

Friday, December 18, 2009

We knew him when... #

Jacob invited us to attend a skit that he and his friends in his Theater Arts class put together. Let me just say that I was honored to be invited - seriously! Jake doesn't always want adults attending his school stuff. OK - more to the point, he doesn't want ME to attend...something about embarrassing him at a field trip. I don't remember at all but he claims I was being too enthusiastic...me? Never! Ha!

Anyway back to his skit - Jake's a natural - he doesn't mind being in front of people and seems to thrive on the attention! I've written about it before, but his sense of humor is one of his greatest strengths.

I quickly noticed that I was the only person there with a camera and I'm sure you understand that I wanted to be on my best behavior so I'd be invited back. I only captured a couple pictures, but here's a peek at 'A Redneck Christmas'.
Jake is the one closest, with the hat on.

Jake - thanks for the show! Hope it's the first of many =)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Christmas Tour of Homes

Christmas Tour of Homes with The Nester

I decided to keep it simple this year. Let's take a look around...

Our Christmas tree
The Christmas card tree

Dining room

I LOVE snowmen!

Here's wishing you the merriest of Christmases!

Thanks for stopping by