Friday, December 28, 2007

Finally Friday and Pictures

It is finally Friday and though I don't have much to say or report on my craftiness, I do have some photos to share. At first I thought I had some photos of the crafty gifts I made for friends and family but I guess because I was in a rush to get them done, wrapped and either given or mailed, I forgot to take pictures. Drats, I do hope to get better at that this new upcoming year. I have been working the last few days in our basement, getting toys organzied, trying to get rid of toys. Which is hard when you have 3 boys all close in age and playing with the same yet different toys. I swear I don' t think we have any room for anything else.

I have also been working on getting my crafting area in order and under control and more "user" friendly. I have struggled with this since moving into our home. I should belly up and take pictures so you can understand what I'm talking about, but I am ashamed at how it looks. I see all of these beautiful sewing nooks and only wish that mine looked that way. I don't even have a window to set my machine under, which is why I usually move my machine upstairs onto the dining room table. But alas, my dining room table looks like a trashed area and I get frustrated and don't want to do any work. That is my reason for cleaning and organizing the basement these last few days. I am trying to figure out how to make it more appealing to the kids to play in (how could it not be, it is a wonderland of toys). I have noticed that the kids are more apt to play in the basement when it is picked up. So, how do I get them to help me pick up? That will be a project to work on.
Anyway, back to the sewing area. My sewing space is also shared with the office. I have about 1/3 of the room dedicated to sewing and the remainder is the desk, file cabinet and desk space. I have been pondering moving my area to the guest bedroom, the problem with this is that it puts me on the 2nd floor of the house and the kids playing in the basement or destroying the family room. I have also pondered, talking with my husband about selling our weight machine. Neither of us uses it, he and I both have gym memberships and it takes up a lot of space. If we removed it that would make a nice are (even under a window) that I could work. Not sure what will happen. But I really should take before and after pictures. But as I said. I am ashamed.
I have really gotten to feeling much better. I actually want to clean. For me that has been a struggle over the last several months. Now if only the laundry fairy would come and magically wash, dry, fold and put away my laundry. Oh how I dislike laundry and can't keep up with it.
So now for the pictures:

Looking at the dancing water.

The little one didn't want the big one near him for a photo.

An attempt to take a picture of the boys with Frosty (this is the only one that looks partially decent of all three of them, the rest are a beautiful mess.)

Christmas Program. Trevor's class sang "I'm a little snowman" and Michael rang (with handbells) "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" and then their classes sang together "Santa Claus is coming to town" and "We wish you a merry Christmas"

The baby crashed. He had a long day and just collapsed on the kitchen floor.

The baby playing in a tote.

Christmas morning for Michael.

Christmas morning for Trevor.

Christmas morning for Ethan (yes it's a vacuum and yes he plays with it and cleans nonstop)

My Red Velvet Cake that was turned into a trifle because Ethan dropped one of the pans on the floor, dug his finger in another one and the third one just fell apart.

Helping daddy fix his headlight.

And lastly, Trevor wanted so badly to go outside and play. So he put his new boots on (the wrong feet), his coat (old one) was upside down, two different gloves (one mitten and one glove both were mine, and his hat). He looked rather cute and went and made a few snow angels in the backyard before coming in and asking for hot chocolate.

Well, that is probably enough for now.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

It is finally over...

Finally, a break for all of us who have been shopping (not me, my husband did most of it for the kids and I only helped with the in-laws, chose my family and friend gifts and of course his gifts). Wow, I guess I did do more shopping than I thought. But I chose to do the majority of my shopping online, this way I did not have to get out with the little ones in the crowds.

I received this newsletter in my inbox today. This is the blurb that I am required to post: Aby Garvey is a professional organizer and the owner of simplify 101, inc. Her mission is to help you create time and space for what matters most in your home and life. Aby is the author of the e-book "the happy scrapper - simple solutions to get organized and get scrapping!" Visit the simplify 101 website for organizing ideas and to subscribe to Aby's organizing email newsletter.
Anyway, it has some great tips. And I 'm going to use them to get the new toys. clothes, games and what nots in place.

And for me, so well deserved sewing time for myself. My quilt-along squares have fallen behind and I need to catch up. My time at the gym has fallen off and I need to get back in the routine.

As for New Years...I'm not sure what we will be doing. No plans have been made thus far. And for resolutions, I try not to make them because I always fail at following through with them. Instead for the upcoming new year I have made a Hopes & Dreams Jar . I can put my thoughts, things I want to accomplish and things I dream of doing and re-read those at the end of the year and see how many of those small pieces of paper were accomplished!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

A visit with Santa and a list

Santa said as I sat Ethan downn that this would be a classic Christmas picture and it sure is. I love the look on Ethan's face with is little hands covering his mouth. And of course Michael and Trevor were looking at me instead of their dad and the camera. These 3 little boys just put a smile on my face (but can also make me frown).

With Christmas fast approaching (2 weeks away but who's counting) and family events starting this weekend, I need to get some stuff completed. So what better way than to make a list:

~Baking - I am way behind, but not worried about it. What gets completed will get completed and what doesn't just doesn't. But today I am going to make some Cowboy cookies and Peanut Butter Delights and some more toffee (the toffee is for gifts). Plus I have to figure out what kind of cookie I am taking to a cookie swap on Sunday and bake 10 dozen of the same kind.
~Gifts to make
1. Quintin - finish his colored pencil roll
2. Julie - oops she sometimes reads so I won't put down what I have to finish for her but know I need to finish it.
3. Joseph - ugh he's a handful and destroys toys, so he's getting a coloring bag.
4. Dale - asked for a Chicago Bears blanket and pillow like the White Sox one I made for him, yikes I need to go shopping.
5. Candle Mats/Potholders for the sibling baskets - This should not take too long.
~Noodle making - 10lbs by Saturday, can I do this, YES I can as Bob would say. 3lbs a day will take care of it, but I think I need more eggs.
~Cleaning - the house is coming along nicely. Just need to do some tidying.
~Gingerbread house - Kids want to make one do I feel like baking all of the sides, not really so it looks like I need to go to the store. probably not today.
~Kids craft - I found these cute dangles at Allsorts . I have the dangles printed and am going to cut out the kids' names and glue them onto card stock and let the kids add glitter and then we can decide where to hang them. Plus we might have to make some snowmen today with marshmallows.

I also need to take some time for me today and I will do that in the afternoon. I am planning on sitting and reading for a bit. I have many more things to add to that list, but don't want to bombard myself.

For in the kitchen, I thought I would share an eggnog recipe for those that are watching their calories. I received this recipe last year from an email from HungryGirl. And I'm sure she will be sending it out again, but I have not seen it come across my inbox. So here it is:

5 cups light vanilla soymilk (they used 8th Continent Light Vanilla Soymilk, I used Fit & Active Light Vanilla Soymilk from Aldi's)

1 sm pkg (4 serving) sugar free fat free vanilla instant pudding
5 no calorie sweetner packets (such as Splenda)
1 tsp rum extract
1/2 tsp nutmeg
Place all ingredients in the blender and mix until smooth. Refrigerate for a few hours. Makes 5 - 1 cup servings.
calories: 88 fat: 2g sodium: 350mg carbs: 11g fiber: 0g sugar: 5g protein: 6g
Points value of 2 and if you add 5oz of rum to the recipe it takes the calorie count to 153 per serving and a points value of 3.

It is a good alternative. And I am watching the calories this year!!!

And because I'm feeling in the a bit in the spirit, I thought I would share a picture from Christmas past: Michael's first Christmas in 2002. And then there is Payton (the reindeer, with droopy antlers)and Carmichael (the Santa).

Thursday, December 6, 2007

ABC's of Christmas

No this is not my house (this was my house 3 years ago) but this is my Christmas tree. It is up (finally) with lights and ornaments. A beautiful tree, but a big pain. My boys all put ornaments on it this year and the little one keeps unplugging all of the lights but I am grateful that the tree is up and everything seems to be falling into some sort of shape.
The boys and I attended and Advent Adventure at church on Saturday and we came home with a pamphlet of information. This was included : ABC's of Christmas
A is for Angels with halos so bright. Whose carols were heard on that first Christmas Night.
B is for Bells so merrily ringing. Joy to the world is the message they are bringing.
C is for Candles that so brightly shine. To give a warm welcome to your friends and mine.
D is for Doorway with garlands of gree. To make Christmas merry as far as they're seen.
E is for Evergreens with fragrance so rare. So plentiful at Christmas their scent fills the air.
F is for Fun the whole season long. From trimming the tree to singing a song.
G is for Greetings a merry "hello". With a heart full of love for people we know.
H is for Holly with berries so red. To make into wreaths to hang overhead.
I is for Ice on snow covered hills. Where sledding is fun along with the spills.
J is for Jesus the Christ child so dear. We honor his birth on Christmas each year.
K is for Kris Kringle so merrily stands. He is who they call Santa in so many lands.
L is for Lanterns I am sure that their light. Helped Mary and Joseph that first Christmas night.
M is for Mary her heart full of love. For her little son Jesus who came from above.
N is for Noel the angels did sing. To herald the birth of Jesus, our King.
O is for Ornaments so shingin and bright. With lights on the tree to sparkle at night.
P is for Packages with ribbons so gay. All 'round the tree for our Christmas Day.
Q is for Quiet Christmas Eve night. With snow covered hills glistening so bright.
R is for Reindeer who pull Santa's sleigh. To your house, to my house they know the way.
S is for Shepherds who first saw the star. Over Bethlehem's manger and followed it far.
T is for Trees we decorate so gay. Then wait for ol' Santa to hurry our way.
U is for Universe where Christmas brings joy. To all in the world to each girl and each boy.
V is for Visiting friends near and far. We travel by plane or by bus or by car.
W is for Wise Men who brought gifts so rare. And knelt down and worshiped the child they found there.
X is for X-mas or Christmas by full name. No matter the language it all means the same.
Y is for Yule Logs whoe bright sparks fly high. To give a warm welcome to friends passing by.
Z is for Zeal we show at this time. In giving to others and loving mankind.