Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Look What I Did!

I have discovered crafty, decorating blogs. I love doing things to my house and these blogs help me with ideas. Well I was clicking through some blogs a little before Christmas and found this post about making bookmarks. I thought they were SO cute and wanted to try it, so I clicked over to this post to show me how to make them.

That night I went to Hobby Lobby (don't you just love that store) and bought the materials. I got different charms to fit the friends I was making them for, like for my friend Lyndsey, I got her a flip flop charm. I got a charm for myself too, a whale tail.

It was not hard at all to make them and I really hope that my friends enjoy. They made cute little gifts. Try it!

**I couldn't post about this earlier because I didn't want to ruin the surprise of my little gifts.

Monday, December 29, 2008

HS Musical Movie Party - Well Sort Of

Last week I got the idea to have a High School Musical get together for Jamison. She has never seen the movie but since it has music and dancing I thought she would enjoy it. So I invited over two of her friends from school.

I was excited. I had the popcorn all ready, put down some sheets on the floor and had cups with drinks. The girls ended up watching the movie for all of 15 or 20 minutes and then they wanted to play. I was disappointed because I always have these ideas of how things are going to be, but I have to remember that my ideas may not always be Jamison, off to play they went.

It was cute while it lasted:

The girls in their 15 minutes of movie watching...Allison, Jamison, Hannah and Annika (Hannah's sister).

Playgroup Reunion

This past Sunday I had sort of a playgroup reunion. My friend Lyndsey came up with the idea of having a playgroup shortly after her oldest, Quinn, was born. The first one was when Quinn was 3 months and Jamison was 1 month. At that time it was more for the moms to talk. Over time we included the dads and it ended up being Lyndsey, me and a couple from Lyndsey's childbirth class, John and Erin. We would get together about once a month, eat and play.

About a year and a half ago John and Erin moved to North Carolina and then to Pittsburgh. Now we try to get together whenever they are in town. Since they were in town for Christmas we decided to get together and have the kids do a gift exchange (Lyndsey and Josh have added Drew to the group and John and Erin have added Emma and Brady). We had breakfast and the kids had a lot of fun playing with one another. A good time was had by all.

Here's Lyndsey helping Quinn with his new toy...Ben 10.

Emma with her new baby doll. We were also able to give her this 8 piece babydoll set that Jamison never used.

Megan and Jamison

The original 3...Jamison, Quinn and Megan. I can't believe they are 5 now. It's so fun to see how much they've grown.

Friday, December 26, 2008

A Tribute to the Christmas Jammies

Ever since Jamison's second Christmas (she was only 3 months for her first Christmas) I have bought her and then Caleb Christmas pajamas to wear for Christmas morning. For whatever reason, this year I didn't get it together in time to get jammies for them. So, I thought in honor of the jammies I'd take a trip down jammie memory lane. Walk with me...

Christmas 2004...the footed snowflake jammies. This is when Ron would call her Thing 1 (from Cat in the Hat). She was adorable.

Christmas 2005, the Santa-striped jammies.

Christmas 2006...the candy cane-heart jammies. This was our first Christmas in our new house.

Christmas 2007...Caleb's first Christmas. This year I bought them matching jammies.

Next year I'll be back with it and the tradition will continue. Ooh, maybe there are some good sales and I can buy them in advance...hmmm.

Christmas 2008

This year we had a very low key Christmas and we enjoyed every minute! On Christmas Eve my mom, her sisters and cousin came over to our house for dinner. For as long as I remember Christmas Eve was always celebrated at my great-grandmother's house. Since she past away last year I decided to have everyone over to our house this year. It was very nice to get together and keep the tradition of us getting together on Christmas Eve going. We had great food too, turkey, ham, dressing, mac and cheese, greens...and my mom made a 5-flavor pound cake, it's her specialty.

Here's Caleb opening Aunt Tammy's gift, a truck...perfect.

Aunt Roni gave Caleb this toy and it was a hit with him too!
Jamison and Clarissa, my Aunt Tammy's daughter. I don't know why Jamison doesn't look at the camera.

Uncle Bobby bouncing Caleb. You can tell he was having a ball.

For that past couple of years my mom has spent the night on Christmas Eve to wake up with us on Christmas morning. It works out really well.

This year we were even able to video tape the kids opening their gifts. They say some really cute things and it was great to be able to capture that on film.

Here's Caleb and his new Little Einsteins laptop. He loves it.

Jamison let me wear this crown that went to her doll because she told me that I'm the queen. She took this picture of me.

Here's Jamison posing with her gifts.

After opening gifts my mom made breakfast...french toast, eggs and bacon, YUM! Then basically the rest of the day we played with toys and just enjoyed being with one another. It was nice not to have to go anywhere. That evening we drove around to see all of the lights in our neighborhood. It was a nice way to end a great day.

How did you spend Christmas?

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

From My Family To Yours!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

7 Things

I was tagged by reading and commenting on this blog. These are always fun to read so I'm playing along!

The Rules:*Link to the person who tagged you.*Share 7 random/weird facts about you.*Tag 7 people at the end of the post, and include links to their blogs.

1. I have a thing about colored pens. I can't just write in black or blue, I have pens in all sorts of colors and I use them all.
2. My favorite holiday is Valentine's Day. I try and buy small, thoughtful gifts for all of my loved ones. Caleb was also due on Valentine's Day!
3. My food can't touch...well some can but other's can't. I almost always have to have my vegetables in a separate bowl. Makes for a lot of dishes.
4. Speaking of dishes...I love doing the dishes.
5. When I was younger I was involved in almost every activity...tap, ballet, swimming, gymnastics, karate (I have a yellow belt!), volleyball, violin, art, name it!
6. I love tote bags. I always carry one with me to has my planner, notebooks, pens (of course) and my To Do stuff. I feel weird without it.
7. I love picture frames. If I didn't have a thing about clutter I'd have them all over my house.

I tag anyone who wants to participate.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Ok, so I'm so excited to say...Evan has a girlfriend! And I don't mean it like he's a dud and couldn't get a girlfriend because he is SO a catch, but he has been wise in when to say someone is his girlfriend. Well, he told me recently that a young lady that I met while we were in Cleveland is now his girlfriend. And here she is (she is the one on the right):

Her name is Brittany and she is as cute as a button (why is that an expression...anyways). She is a sweetheart and I can tell that she is as smart as she is sweet. She has the most beautiful red hair too. I'm so happy for my bro because he is a great guy and deserves a great gal. :)

Make it Monday...

Breakfast Casserole
10-12 pieces of bread (I use Italian)
6 eggs
2 cups of milk
1 package of breakfast sausage
1 package of shredded mild cheddar cheese
Brown sausage and let cool
Butter 9x13 dish
Line dish with pieces of bread
Mix eggs and milk
Pour mixture over bread
Top with cooled sausage
Add cheese
Cover and refrigerate overnight
Bake (with foil) at 350 for 45 minutes
Bake another 20 minutes without foil

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Aunt Roni Returns Tomorrow

I think I've posted about this before...but since my aunt's daughter past away she hasn't been to my house to watch the kids. Well that time is up and she returns tomorrow. I am thankful that people stepped up to the plate to watch the kids so that we could give her the time that she needed. She is excited to come back and the kids are excited to see her. YEAH!!!!

It's About Time...

...that I updated about last weekend. Long post ahead.

First, on Saturday morning I had a cookie exchange to go to. Have you ever been to one of these? They are wonderful. You make a couple dozen cookies (more depending on the host and the number of people involved) and you come home with a couple dozen cookies. This was the second year that Lyndsey and her mom have had their cookie exchange. This year I made frosted sugar cookies. They turned out really well if I do say so myself. We had good food, good company and went home with cookies...can't get much better than that. AND, they even had prizes. Those two are so cute.

Here's me with the hostess, Lyndsey.

My mom came too...don't we look cute?

I brought drinks and I tried to be cute by adding the red ribbon.

Here are the cookies that I made. I had some with red frosting too...festive! The ones to the right of mine are the ones that my mom made, jam thumb prints.

I thought this cookie jar was SO cute.

Here's Lyndsey's husband's cousin's wife (follow me?). She had on the cutest headband, so I took her picture.

That night was Rondell's dad's family's Christmas party. Rondell's dad and his siblings get together and put on this huge dinner. It is so nice of them to do! This year they had a kids' table all set up with crayons, coloring books and toys. We ate late, but the food was really good.

The happy couple.

Here is Jamison in the outfit that she could not wait to wear!

Three generations. Here's Rondell's dad, who Caleb is named after. Everyone calls him Randy but his name is Caleb.

Jamison and her cousins.
On Sunday our Small Group had its Christmas party. The first time Rondell and I went to our Small Group, it was for the Christmas party. That was four years ago!

My friend Jodie and I put everything together. We had it at her house and she made all the food and I helped with the favors and setting up. We had such a great time. It was very comfortable and casual. I brought a word scramble with Bible books. It was SO hard. Everyone had a good time trying to figure it out...Nahum was one of the books and I had never heard of that one.

What's a Small Group Christmas party without a White Elephant Exchange. Tonya got the dartboard. It was a big hit and there were MANY steals for this one. She was so excited when it was finally hers.

Me and Jodie with tassels on our of the gifts.

I was so sad because my camera was acting up so I had to steal these pictures from Jodie. Next year I'll have it together.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Check Out My Brother

Here's an article about my brother in the Cleveland Plain Dealer. I am so proud!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Make It Monday...

This recipe is really from my friend Jodie, but I made them this weekend for Lyndsey's cookie party. They turned out really well...almost as good as Jodie's!

Frosted Sugar Cookies
1 1/2 cup powder sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almost extract
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
Mix sugar and butter until well blended. Add egg and flavorings. Mix well. Stir in dry ingredients. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Roll into balls and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 for 7-8 minutes.
For frosting:
2 cups powder sugar
1/4 cup shortening
2 tbs milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
food coloring (optional)
Mix together sugar and shortening. Gradually mix in the milk and vanilla until smooth and stiff (you can add a little more milk, if needed). Color with food coloring if desired. Frost cookies.

Catch Up

I have some catching up to do. We had a lot going on this weekend so stay tuned for a few posts in a row!

I also made my first craft off of a blog and am very pleased with the result. Since I made one for my friend Lyndsey for her birthday, I'll till I give it to her to post about it.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

You Know You Have Too Much On Your Plate When...

You put your child on time out and then forget she's there!

Last night my mom came over for pizza. After dinner while she and I were talking the kids were watching TV and Ron was upstairs. Well Jamison kept standing right in front of the TV and I kept telling her to move back (because if not then Caleb gets upset because he can't see and then a fight usually breaks out). Well the third time I asked her "how many times to I have to ask you to move back?" And her response..."three." My mom and I fought back laughter. So the fourth time I put her on time out.

Well, my mom and I continued our conversation for I don't know how long. Rondell came downstairs and asked me what Jamison did. I said "why do you ask?" and he said because she was in time out. I had completely forgotten all about her. It had probably been a good 15 minutes. Poor Jamison.

Has this ever happened to you?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Rollin with the Big Kids

I'm at home today because Paw Paw has the stomach flu (thanks to Caleb!). So, I walked Jamison to the bus stop this morning and Caleb, of course, was with me. The kids at the bus stop are all older than Jamison, except for Halle who is in her class. Still, Jamison gets along with them and they are very accepting of her.
What was funny this morning was to watch Caleb interact with the other kids. He just stood in the middle of them taking in their conversations. I happened to have my camera on me (from just having taken their picture for our Christmas card) so I had to snap a shot of Caleb.

Hangin with the big kids!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Make it Monday

Don't you just love how I shortened the title :)

Easy Weeknight Chili (this is my title)
1lb of ground beef
2 can of tomato sauce for chili (I use Hunt's)
1 can of chili beans (or more if you like)
1 package of chili season

Season and brown ground beef, drain (I brown the meat in the pot I'm going to make the chili in)
Combine meat, sauce, beans, a little water, and package of chili season to pot.

*Of course if you have more time you can add chopped onion, bell pepper, and more types of beans.
**I eat my chili with tortilla chips and sour cream, yum.

Sweet Rewards

Remember when I told you that I won this contest. Well my prize recently came in the mail. It was so exciting to get a little package that was all my own.

First I got these precious little notebooks. Since I am the queen of notebooks, this was perfect. I have one in my bible (not pictured) and these two are in my purse. I'm going to use them to jot down prayer requests that I get.

Look at the cute covers!

This little guy is hanging on my front door to welcome each person as he or she comes in. It adds a special touch.
Thanks so much Heather!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

More Jamison

This little girl just cracks me up and is sure to put a smile on my face. Yesterday I had plans to take Jamison and Caleb to the library and then to Kohl's because they are both in desperate need of new clothes. After I got home from work I fed them and was trying to get them ready to leave. My in-laws were there (because my father-in-law is still watching the kids for us) and they offered to take Caleb with them to spend the night and then Mike would just bring him back in the morning. WONDERFUL! I jumped right on the opportunity because it would be much easier to do my errands with just Jamison and I never get just me and Jamison time. Jamison was sad because she wanted to go with Maw Maw and Paw Paw too, but I bribed her with a toy and then she was OK.

Jamison was so cute the whole time. She talked to me about all kinds of things and had me laughing out loud. I truly enjoyed spending that time with her.

Once we got home I had her use the restroom before we put jammies on. One thing about Jamison is that she takes FOREVER in the bathroom, so I'm always yelling for her to hurry up. So, last night it was more of the same and her response to me was "Mom, I'm talking to God and Jesus." How could I possibly rush that? My response to her was "tell them I said hi." And she did. Sweet girl.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Miss Jamison

Jamison's teacher just emailed me this picture. Here is Jamison reading her book to her Kindergarten class. It's the book she read last night and I remember her saying that she wanted to take it to school with her (she must have then put in her bookbag). I'm glad that her teacher let her read it to the class because I'm sure she was so happy to do that.

Wordless Wednesday

Sibling Love!

***I swear they always do cute stuff right when I'm in the middle of changing my sheets!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Weekend Review - Girls Night Out and Browns Game

My friend Lyndsey invited me to go to dinner and a movie with her and her friends Amber and Stephanie this weekend. With Rondell working and the the kids gone and I did not pass up on that opportunity. We went to dinner at Champp's and then went to see Four Christmases. The company was really great and we had a nice time. The movie was hilarious. If you are looking for belly-aching, tear-inducing laughter, this movie is for you. Of course now that I've talked it up you may not like it, but I have not laughed like that in a long time.

Amber, Lyndsey and Stephanie

Me and Amber

On Sunday Rondell and I woke up really early to leave for Cleveland. It was nice to drive just the two of us and wonderful conversation. I learned all about flat screen TVs and all that comes with them. Rondell really knows his stuff.

We arrived at my dad's around 10:30. It was fun to see the kids and they were super excited to see us. I felt bad that we were coming in and then getting ready to leave for the game, but they were in good hands (my siblings').

Me and Ron on the way to Cleveland for his first NFL game!

The crowds headed to the game. I looked like a real tourist taking pictures.

The Stadium!

We had club seats, so here we are waiting for the game to start and getting ready to have some stadium food.

Our view.

Me and Ron in the cold.

Renee and Daddy.

This was me by the second quarter, bundled. It wasn't that bad though.

Rondell and I had such a great time at the game. We are going to have to do that again. Thanks Renee for thinking of us!