Thursday, December 24, 2015

Night before Christmas 2015

The night before Christmas we ate our traditional tamale dinner. Then we snuggled in with hot chocolate and marshmallows and watched A Christmas Carol and prepared for the big man to come down the chimney. 
It was quite the content and cozy night. :)

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Friday, December 18, 2015

Nutcracker 2015

As the last day of school before winter break ticked away I waited patiently for Cash to be dismissed so we could head to the nutcracker. On the way there my guy confessed to me "Mama I have had A LOT of treats today." I figured my little firecracker would have a difficult time sitting still anyway, but this sealed the deal.

We sat through the performance and Cash loved it! He did have difficulties sitting still; so, I offered up my lap, we sat contentedly after that and took in the dance together. :) He was thrilled about the dancing and over all story. The entire time he whispered his interpretations of what the performers were acting out. 

Afterwards we had photo opportunities with some of the ballerinas...Cash had zero interest in being that close to a perfect stranger. Thus, I took pictures of other people's children with one of the soldiers!
All tuckered out, Cash fell asleep just like Clara on the way home. :)

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Heavenly Aromas

Over the past few years we have developed the tradition of baking and creating these chocolate dipped pretzels for friend and teacher gifts. The kidlets enjoy this because they can add a different creative flair to each and every pretzel. Last night Heather and Claire stopped by after dinner and helped us (First for Claire!) with the process.
Claire was more of an appraiser than a creator last night. I also caught her sleeping on the job!
Hard at work  

After hours of baking, dipping, decorating, and patiently watching them dry, I carefully packaged our treats only to discover that..we ran out of boxes! Oops! I managed to pack up a good portion of the left overs. However, somehow we ended up keeping and eating quite a bit for breakfast! :)
Have I mentioned how much I enjoy holidays? Not just Christmas, but really, all of them! I love waking up and doing something a little different, I cherish tradition and I love seeing my birds create new memories. The work is always worth it; but, sometimes it sure can be exhausting! At the end of the night I was beat and ready to hit the hay!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Super Service Saturday

This weekend was busy to say the least. Between office holiday parties, dinner club and sister Christmas celebrations, we managed to fit in gymnastics, caroling, wreath laying with Wreaths Across America and assembling our holiday greetings!
This Saturday, after months of going door to door and standing outside of store fronts, Cash was finally able to see the results of all the generous donations his troop was able to collect! He spent over five hours at the veteran's cemetery participating in the ceremonies and assisting with wreath distribution. This has been my favorite of our projects; it goes to such a great cause. The lessons the children learn about the sacrifices others have made for our nation, as well as meeting the thankful families and veterans is  absolutely priceless. This Saturday, nearly the entire cemetery was decorated with 58,000 wreaths! All by the generosity of other's time and money! 
See more information here WAA-Houston 2015
Yuliya was also out and about spreading joy on Saturday. She spent the day caroling at an assisted living home, and earning her Summit Award! After gymnastics, we rushed to donuts and practice before heading off to the true performance. The girls did such a wonderful job and the audience thoroughly enjoyed their caroling and card / gift giving! 

Handing out cards they hand made for the occasion. 

The girls also kindly gave away their jingle bells; which, brought a great deal joy to the new owners who jingled along with the remainder of the songs! 

Yuliya and her friend Hanna earn their Summit Award- signalling that they have complete the three brownie journeys! Woohoo! She is prepared to bridge in the spring!
 Once we made it home, my helpers spent the next few hours helping me address and decorate the holiday cards that you all should be receiving shortly! And a brilliant job they did!  Enjoy! Oodles of love from our house to yours!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Sister Christmas

Fabulous Purple hat knitted by cousin Madi.

On Sunday afternoon, we had the pleasure of celebrating Christmas with my sisters and their families. We held onto our gifts for Jack and Sam who couldn't make this event, which in the end, I think they might be thankful they missed this one!
All of the children were so proud of their new personalized aprons! I can't wait to see our four in the kitchen baking away with them! Thank you Grandmami! Check out Alyssa's head band and Yuliya's hat that Madi so thoughtfully fashioned for them! 

It is also worth nothing that the three littles looking off to the side were watching Aunt Amy's wild wild chimpanzee impression. :)

 After dinner, the family gathered around and "played" Beanboozled! You better believe that yours truly kept her mouth sealed tighter than a bank vault!  In case you haven't heard of this game. Here are the basics...
Lift the lid, lower the lid and like that magic a bean appears! Is the black jelly bean Licorice, or is it Skunk Spray? Perhaps the blue bean is Toothpaste flavor, or maybe it's delicious Berry Blue. BeanBoozled jelly beans come in 20 flavors, 10 weird and wild flavors matched up with 10 look-alike tasty flavors.  Wacky flavor pairings include: 

  • Stinky Socks - Tutti-Fruitti 
  • Lawn Clippings - Lime 
  • Rotten Egg - Buttered Popcorn 
  • Toothpaste - Berry Blue 
  • Barf - Peach 
  • Canned Dog Food - Chocolate Pudding 
  • Booger - Juicy Pear 
  • Moldy Cheese - Caramel Corn 
  • Baby Wipes - Coconut 
  • Skunk Spray - Licorice

Kaitlyn realizing that she just ate Skunk Spray, she was a trooper and ate all of the good as well as the bad. 

Rotten egg for Madi!

Booger for Keith!

Vomit for Amy!

....And back to normal

Merry Christmas from Alyssa, Yuliya, and Kaitlyn!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Just a little trim

Little known fact: Cash detests having his hair trimmed. On the same level that some people hate going to the dentist or getting a shot. He does not enjoy getting his hair cut. Generally I try to let him ride out a single haircut for a couple of months.

Well known fact: Cash very much so enjoys tackling problems on his own without adult intervention .

On Friday I noticed something fishy about Cash. I questioned if he had cut his hair. 
"Yep!" he responded with pride. 
I probed, "Why?!" 
"It was in my eyes" he reasoned. 
"Let's go get your hair cut!" I said.
"I don't need a haircut now! It's not in my eyes anymore!" Pure delight.

(He did receive a professional cut on Saturday, along with mama, Keith and Yuliya).

At age 6 I thought we were well past the risk of ever entering a room and finding your child has snipped their lovely locks. Boy was I mistaken! 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

I'm Baaack

After quite the hiatus, I have decided to try to get this old girl going again! For now I think I will back blog the events that have gone on in the past....wait let me check... YEAR and half of radio silence! Good gravy! While you wait, please please enjoy this photo of Keith.
This folks, was part of our 2015 holiday shopping experience. Accompanying a husband with arms bursting with stuffed animals had me in a fit of giggles for many reasons, but mostly because, if you have ever had a child, you know, this is precisely how they pack for a sleep over. :) 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015


In September Keith went on an assignment in Hawaii, I took a few days and met up with him out there. It was beautiful! 
The down side to Keith working while we travel is that I spend a big portion of the day at the resort. (terrible right?) As you may have gathered by now, I like to be out and about, hiking, and exploring! The resort, in Ko Olina, was pretty far removed from hikes, and activities. Here are the photos from "working hours."

I absolutely loved this little church. You could see it from our patio. We were able to catch a few darling weddings there! The blue walls on either side of the orange doors are actually water walls!

What looks like pineapples in the trees (actually a pandanus tree)
The property was beautifully landscaped
I never took photos of the resort next to us, but I had to go up there a couple of times to check out and return a rental car. It was equally beautiful. This resort though, had a giant tree in the center of the parking lot jam packed with birds squawking at each other so loudly that it is impossible to hear even the person right next to you! 
When I stepped foot out of the car I searched for the source of the screams and when I finally looked up into this tree I was in awe.
Waikiki Beach in Honolulu

On the very last day we spent the afternoon / evening on a "local's beach" eating cheese, drinking wine and watching the surfers bob in the ocean just waiting for that big wave to break. More pictures from Hawaii to follow!


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