Tuesday, December 28, 2010

What I've been reading! (OVER and OVER.....)

Jonathan and I started a tradition for Katelynn.  Last year and this we have bought her a Christmas book.  I found this one on Borders website and it was only $6.99.  I also had a $5 off coupon off ANY   in-store purchase.  SO...I headed off to Borders bookstore a few weeks before Christmas and picked this book up.  It was PERFECT for her age.  Short and Sweet.  Have I mentioned she LOVES books.  Little did I know that this book would quickly become her FAVORITE book.  I think I read it on average about 6 times a day!  Plus, she sleeps with the book!!!
The book is really cute...talking about a mouse telling everyone in the stable that SOMEONE is coming to this house.  And the animals (in response to the mouse) began cleaning up the barn for Mary and Joseph.  I would be embarassed to read it for you due to the fact I try my best to change my voice for each animal.  My husband gets into it some too...but not as much as me.  He gives me the "you're crazy" look as he sits across the room while I read it to Katelynn.

I am so happy she loves to look/read books and loves books being read to her.  But this book, I must confess, get's hidden at times so I don't have to read it for the 10th time that day!!!
But I am happy I picked a winner this year!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Mary did you know? I wonder?

I have began to ponder  (ok so that word is to big for me) think about the Christmas story this year.  Is it just me or do most mothers tend to gravitate towards Mary the mother of Jesus...and what she must have been thinking.  With 3 Christmas' now being in some stage of motherhood...I seem to have been thinking about Mary alot.  I listened to "Mary Did You Know"  So that just made me think about it more. 

I have to wonder, Did Mary Really know?  I mean all of it?  His whole life?  I mean I know the Angel told her that "He shall save His people from their sin." (Matt 1:21)  And "Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart." (Luke 2:19)  But that does mean she thought it over right??  I mean, she didn't really have a choice in the matter...but If had been highly favored in Gods site...enough to bear His SON...I don't think I would want to change my situation either.  Although, if I thought to much...I would probably freak out and think...there is NO WAY I can do this.  I mean...RAISE GOD"S SON???  And if she knew everything?  And just HOW he was going to "save His people from their sins".  If I knew all that I think it would break my heart.    I look at my daughter and if I knew all that her life was going to hold...and couldn't change any of it.  How would I re-act?  How would I feel?  Would I have a broken heart?  Would I be happier beyond words?  Would I have a bitter-sweet moment?  COULD I HANDEL IT???

 I am just glad that God really knew what woman to pick.  I can't imagine how she felt knowing that "Goldfish" feeling in her tummy was the Son of GOD! And then riding on a DONKEY, in the last part of her pregnancy???  I had a hard time sitting in a church pew without my back killing me...let alone a DONKEY!!!  I won't even go into the accommodations she had for delivery...BOY are we girls spoiled and think WE have it rough!!!  Finally, that squirming bundle of joy, she had to wrap in swaddling clothes.  Did she bring them herself?  Or did she find them in the stable?  Did she go into early labor...or had she planned a home delivery once they got back from Bethlehem? And she had to lay him in the Cow's feeding dish.  Did she make Joseph change out the hay to fresh hay ?  Or was she to exhausted and excited taking in her newborn son to worry about that?  Did she count his fingers and toes?  And at what point did it hit her that she was looking into the eyes of the Son of God and kissing his tender face?

A baby always seems to bring out the best in people...what kind of emotion did it bring out in Mary and Joseph?  And every new mother has guest...but dirty smelly shepherds?  I mean, today we pass around the sanitizer before anyone touches or holds our new babies.  And if you have the sniffles...a new mommy gets quite antsy for you to hold her new precious child.  But these guys probably had grubby hands...and most likely didn't smell good.  Or did they try to clean up?  The angel did tell them they were going to go see JESUS...so did they think about their appearance?  And Mary, no doubt exhausted, welcomed in her guests smelliness, grubbiness and all!  What a woman!

Then instead of being able to go home..they got a new home and moved in.  And after some settling in they heard some commotion going on out front of their house.  Three men, with very expensive clothes were approaching. Mary and Joseph had began to notice that bright star that bathed their house every night, was very bright!  (ok, so maybe that part is not totally scriptural...but I think after some time I would notice a big star that didn't seem to move from being over my house!)  I wonder did Mary and Joseph's neighbors notice all that was going on???  How did Mary feel about these 3 important guest?  Did she have any sort of feeling of embarrassment about the quaintness of their house.  Or where the kings gracious and make her feel so comfortable? The presentation of their gifts had to be amazing!  I wonder what she did with them? And after all that did she invite them in for food and fellowship?  I have no doubt Mary was a gracious hostess.  After all God knew about all this, and knew all the phases she would have to go through.

Then the dedication, Simeon and Anna...I can only imagine the pride that went through those new parents hearts.  The same pride that any parent has when someone makes over their new child!

All those years in between the events surrounding his birth and when he was 12 and they found him in the temple are not talked about.  I can only imagine the memories Mary and Joseph  made.  How did they feel when he cut his first tooth?  Was Jesus bald or did he have LOTS of hair as baby?  What did they do on his birthday?  Just how excited was Mary when Jesus took his first wobbly step?  Can you imagine having such an OBEDIENT child?  What was his first word?  Did he say Ma Ma or Da da first.  Was he a Daddy's boy or a Mommy's boy?  (I think he was a Mommy's boy)  What was his favorite toy?  What was school like for Jesus?  What was Jesus favorite food?  Did He like sweets?   Just how was his childhood?  You mothers who are more experienced then me...could continue this list.  I know we are talking about Jesus...and I don't want to Humanize nor diminish just WHO HE IS...But He did have a childhood...and He did have a normal mother who went thru all the normal emotions that any of we Mommy's would go through.  I just wonder???

This Christmas, let yourself wonder.  You might be amazed how the story hits home in your heart...it has mine!!!!

Friday, December 03, 2010

Project Topiary....DONE!

Another project DONE!!  YEA for Me! (mind me as I do a little happy dance!)

I was visiting alot of blogs sometime in October and found this project.  I did not get the website, but I do believe it was one of CREATIVE BLOGS in my side bar.  Sorry I can not take credit for all of it. BUT, I did add my own take. 

I could not find the Berry Picks in the color I needed, but as you soon find in crafting SPRAY PAINT goes a LONG way and you find yourself coming back to it OVER and OVER again.  (Right Leah???) 
Any how, I just happened to have the colors I needed at home that I had purchased to go with 2 other projects. (still wating to be done.  In my defense one is a future Jr. Church decor project.) 

Anyhow, so out I went to my COLD garage with my Gold Berry picks, and began spray painting away with these colors:  Sage and Brown Boots

They spray painted quite well, and to let them dry I poked the stems into a box and had them dry upright.
*on a side note:  this blonde did not crack the door on the garage, thus got told by my loving Hubby if I didn't want to risk getting high off the fumes I had better at least crack the garage door to get some air flow.*  What do I know??? 
If your doing this your self you might want to spread apart the stems and THEN spray paint them.  They tended to stick and got these little notches on them...but it didn't look to bad.  (and I didn't want to spray paint them again.  Some of them had to have a second coat, just to cover the original color well.)

I also took a medium Styrofoam ball and spray painted it brown.

After every thing was dry I brought it all inside and began to assemble.
Things you need: (will list again at bottom of blog)
2 Styrofoam balls (1 painted 1 not painted)
*I spray painted the one the berries went into, just so the WHITE would not be seen*
a vase/pot
a long stick
(can use a dowel rod..but will need to paint it..I got a stick from my tree outside.  Just make sure the stick and the Styrofoam ball you use compliment one another)
SEVERAL berry picks (I used 3 colors and 2 sizes ) I used about 10 berry picks
Hot Glue gun
Wire cutter
Flowers (if desired)
 Began cutting the berry's off .....leave enough wire attached so you can poke it into the ball.

Began assembling. I placed my stick into the bottom first so I would know the top from the bottom.
  I really kept NO pattern with the berries...liked the abstract look.
I also added some flowers into the mix...and I chose to use the flower buds that looked like they were just starting to open at the top then used the open blooms at the bottom of the ball.  I just popped the flowers off the stem and HOT GLUED them into the spots.  On the open blooms I put a few berries underneath the petals so they would pop out.
 Once I was done. (that step took awhile...and keep the glue gun handy some of the berries like to fall out...but I tried to use it the least as I could.)   Place the 2nd ball into your vase/pot and poke the stick into it. Make sure it is pushed down far enough to support your Topiary.  (I had to purchase another base...due to the square floral foam I had bought did not Support it well...but the ball was a very Tight fit and worked great for the vase that I had.)
 I hot glued on some floral moss and Wah-LAH----Project is done!
You LIKE???
I LIKE!!!!

2 Styrofoam balls (1 painted/ 1 plain)
1 stick
Several Berry picks approx 10-12 (I suggest 2 sizes to give you some depth...but you can do as you like.)
spray paint (IF berrys are not the color you want)
Wire cutter
Glue gun


Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Christmas Photoshoot...with my Baby!

Being home now gives me alot of time to do some things I really love and one is


I am not an expert...but I am learning from 3 different photographers I know.

Here are my results from a Christmas photo shoot I had with Katelynn

Still learning to play around with Photoshop..so most of these pictures are untouched.  We had alot of fun taking them...and Katelynn did quite well for mommy, in between wanting to see about every shot.

 I love the tender look she has here.
*this one I did play with the staturation a bit...for you Photoshop junkies*
Adding the Christmas ornament really helped me to keep her attention and matched her dress perfect! 

 My little cheeser

 This is the UNTOUCHED pic of the 1st one I showed you.

Adding a friend in the picture...she loves this snowman and plays with it many times during the day. 
It is one of the few Christmas decor she is allowed to play with.

And again, the BIG smile I love to see!!!

In Christmas Awe!

My total favorite of them all!!!  She did the knee and hand thing all on her own!


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It's Pumpkin Roll time

This time of year I am always very busy making lots of pumpkin rolls.  It started back about 4 years ago when a man at my old job heard me talking about my pumpkin rolls and asked if I would make him one if he paid me.  I told him "Sure"...then other people thru the years got wind that I would make them.  Last year I think I made about 10.  This year I made 17 total.   I had 13 orders and then 2 for our thanksgiving..but I had 2 that turned out bad. (one split apart and another burned a bit.)  Let's just say my hubby loves when that happens because than he doesn't have to wait till Thanksgiving dinner to eat one.  I on the other had hardley want to eat one at all.  I did eat a few bites already to taste test them...YUMMY!!!
*just as a note, I have choose for now not to share my recipe..due to the fact that I am selling them*

Pumpkin Rolls cooling

 Beautiful...and YUMMY!!!

(Hey, I never claimed to be a NEAT cook)
 My little girl was AWESOME!!!!  She entertained herself..even by putting herself in her Daddy's shoes!
I was cooking from about 6:30 a.m  till about 5 p.m we took breaks to run to the store for sugar, eat lunch, read books before naptime, and then ate supper together.  (this mommy felt VERY guilty for not playing with her today...but I understand that things got to get done some times.)
 We had some unexpected visitors.  My dear friend Caroline was on her way to her mom and dad Thanksgiving and needed a potty stop for her boys.  She stayed for a bit, and just in time for Katelynn to wake up from her nap and share some kisses with Jonny!  (and Blakey too...he wasnt too sure at first then he started after her with a HUGE smile on his face!  To bad I didn't get that on camera.)
 If you look real close...you can see Powder Sugar on her chin and nose...she was crawling around under the table while I was rolling up the Pumpkin rolls. (I have to put Powder sugar on the towel I roll the pumpkin roll up in..so thus the sprinkling of powder sugar on her.)
 WHEW!!! I am done...and one delivered already!


6 lbs Powder sugar
2 lbs butter
11 lbs cream chees
4.5 doz eggs
8 lbs sugar
6 lbs flour
6 lbs pumpkin

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Crafting and Cooking

 Ok, so I told you all I was working on some crafs.  Other than making new memories with Katelynn...doing some crafts have been a HUGE thing I have been so excited about.

This little guy was given to me several years ago by my mother in law.  She had extra Christmas stuff and knew I needed some things to decorate my home.   I have used him alot over the years...but never been to thrilled with his painted little vest.  The blue just does not go with me decor...unless he was to be in my bathroom. (LOL)  So after going thru several blogs it hit me...REDO his vest.

So here he is!  I like him ALOT better now!!!

It is so dangerous for me to go into craft stores!!!  I love them and could spend $100's of dollars, if our budget would allow.  Boy was I thrilled to find this vase for $2.97!!!!  Not much better than a GW special!!!
And then the 3 floral stems I bought were 80% OFF!!!!  YEA....so approx final cost...was a little over $6.  I was thrilled!!!

I am not a floral desingner by any stretch...but this is what I turned out.  I am pretty happy.  I was going to wait till after Christmas to put it out!  But I couldn't resist.  I am re-doing alot of my rooms in my house and as excited as I am about Christmas decor...I can't wait to start redecorating  with all my new stuff and good deals!!!

Now for the cooking area in my home...I have been enjoying being able to get back in front of the stove...and not feel rushed!
Jonathan's aunt gave us some FRESH pumpkin...and I made 1 pumpkin roll (which for the moment I am not going to share because I sell them...will be making 14 of them the week of Thanksgiving!!!)

Any how found this receipe on line (on another blog...not sure where at the moment)

1 cup Butter
1 cup Sugar
1 cup Brown Sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla
1 cup pumpkin
3 cup flour
2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 t cinnamon
1 t pumpkin spice
2 c chocolate chips

Beat sugars and butters together. Add eggs 1 at a time.  Mix in  Pumpkin and vanilla.
Sift in flour, soda, salt and spices.
Stir in chocolate chips
Bake 350  for 15-20 min.

These cookies are VERY soft and moist!
Very light in the pumpkin taste.
I tend to like chewy/crunchy cookies...but these were very good!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Homade Christmas gifts!

Well Katelynn and I tried our hand at making some homemade Christmas ornaments!
Here she is admiring some of her shapes all cut out.

Pardon some of the blurry shots...I was having some MAJOR issues with my camera.

She had so much fun cutting out the circles!
And playing in the flour!

The Snowman baking

The Snowman being painted and drying!

Some are ready for the tree and the rest just need ribbon attached.

And here is ours hanging on the tree!!!!

You can go Here and see how to do it yourself!!!
It was so easy!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

My first 2 weeks

Wow, I didn't know that I would love being a Stay-at-home-mom SO MUCH!  It is amazing!  And as much free time as I might seem to have the days still seem to go by fairly fast! 
Katelynn and I are still trying to get into a schedule...for the most part we have it down...but with a bit of improvision here and there.  BEING FLEXIBLE as a mom is something I am continuing to learn! 

Katelynn is for the most part ALL girl.   She loves her doll and likes to take it to bed with her, to church, in the car and pretty much everywhere.  And the doll changes from day to day.
This day she choose one of the last dolls that I got for Christmas as a little girl.  When I first introduced Katelynn to her, she was about 8 months...she was very scared of her!  Wouldn't even come to me when I was holding the doll...thats how scared!
Now she drags her all over...she's a bit of a bigger doll so its cute to watch her try and lug her around!
Here they are watching a movie together

Need I say again how much of a girly she is???  She gets in my closet where I keep my purses and drags them out all the time.  Plus she has a couple of her own and is getting a couple more for Christmas!

Here she is just before nap time giving another one of the baby dolls I had growing up a ride.  The 1st "Baby Alive"...I loved her as a kid and she was one of the 2 baby dolls I kept.  We had changed her into a little nightgown I had...Katelynn loved going through all of the little clothes and Barbie dolls I had kept.  I felt she was old enough to play with them and was excited myself to get out some old toys that I had played with growing up.  Lots of memories came back!

Our first week home together was cold, but it was sunny and she wanted to go outside so bad.  So I bundled her up and we went out and played for awhile...it was so worth it!
Taking a break sitting on her pumpkin
Mamaw and Papaw Thompson gave her a pumpkin before Halloween, and I wanted to get it carved sooner..but with working and our short evenings I knew I would be more stressed about getting it done and getting the mess cleaned up. And worrying wether or not she would even like it or not and trying to keep her involved and the list could go on as to reasons why I didn't do it.  So I decided we would do it during the day.
She was all about digging the seeds out!  I was pretty suprised but happy that she was not turned off by the ickyness nor the goopiness.  She had so much fun, but I was glad I had put the towels down.  There were seeds everywhere!
Pulling out pumpkins mouth
And the end result!  I was pretty pleased with my cutting skills and keeping a 1 year old away enough so she wouldn't get cut...but could still be involved.
And he's lit!!
(And yes, he is sitting on the toilet!  I didn't have anyother dark places in my house at the moment and I wanted Katelynn to get the whole effect from cutting, carving and lighting him.)
A slide from Mamaw and Papaw!
And we have a Kids porch swing from Mommy and Daddy for her 1st birthday.
And  Kids teter-totter that Jonathan found for FREE when he was running his UPS route, so he drove back the the persons house after work and it was still there...so He loaded it up!!!  (Thank You GOD for little blessings.)  So aside from the fact we do not have that much of  a yard and a pond in our back yard. (mommy's nightmare!!)   She has a LOT to play with!!!
Then Last Sunday my mom was baptised.  Anyone that knows my mom, she is TERRIFIED of water!
I was SO proud of her for overcoming her fear and going thru with a very Special Moment in the life of a Christian.
On a lighter note...Katelynn proceeded to say, "Nana" over and over when she was speaking, and when papaw gave the scripture reading she shouted his name out too!  Cute ( I guess) but we are trying to get her to learn to whisper in church!  A HUGE challange!  Thankfully she is not really talkitive so she is not to bad!
We Enjoyed some time with Papaw and Nana Hilligoss after the baptismal!  She enjoys being with her Grandparents!

2nd WEEK!

We were able to enjoy several picnics this week!  It was so much fun!  I keep telling myself, next summer she is not going to be this little and is going to be alot more independent and I will not have some of these Precious "Little little" girl moments!  I am holding back tears as I write...thinking back on this week and the precious moments I have had.  I am so blessed...when I look at her I can't believe that she is mine!!!!  I have the rest of my life to have so many "moment's" with her!!!  She is so precious!  I am loving that I get those times when she drops what she is doing and comes and wants a hug or a cuddle then she's off running and playing again!  Wow, I never knew how these "mommy/parent moments" would be so amazing!!

We made Banana popcicles!  They were very healthy and pretty good.  Katelynn loved eating them.  ALL BY HERSELF!!!!

I was Thanking God for the beautiful days He gave us!  Due to me working all summer and getting home late...I bearly got anytime to play outside with her.  I was thankful Mamaw and Papaw Thompson made sure she got alot of time outside...but I really missed being able to do it MYSELF!   I think God did it just for me so I could make some memories with her outside!  We had so much time!  And I have her Snow suit and Boots ready for when we get the snow!!!  As much as I kind of dislike HUGE snowstorms...I am so looking forward to playing in it and sledding with her!!!!

So there you have it my first 2 weeks at home.  We also visited "Wiz" (Lizzie Dennis) 2 times and had a mini phot shoot (will post pics), spent time at the hospital with Grandpa Thompson who had Gallbladder surgury, and had "Auntie" Caroline visit us too!  I have also tackled our garage and am almost done with it. (will post pics later) I have organized most of the dresser drawers in our bedroom, Kitchen drawers, and linen closet (Yea, feels good to purge!)   I also have a few crafting things I am working on too! (pics soon to come on this too!)
(P.S.  By the way I made a wonderful Candybar cheese cake (snicker bar) when Caroline came!  Oh My goodness it was so delicious!  I didn't even get a picture!  But it is a do over that is for sure!  but I will probably tweek it a bit.  Due to my hubby not liking all the chocolate.  But Oh man did Care and I LOVE it!!!!)