Related Posts with Thumbnails
.

All Was Calm.....

Photobucket


...and then by 7am it was a flurry of excitement and flying gift-wrap and squeals of delight and thank-you hugs and wide-eyed wonderment.


Photobucket


Photobucket



Photobucket





The girls each instantly fell in love with their Pillow Pets:


Photobucket



Photobucket



In years past I've always wrapped up a gift to each of the girls from their sisters, just because it was faster that way. But this year we gave them each an allotted amount and they ran around the store picking up presents. They were SO excited to get stuff they thought their sisters would love. I think it was the first time that they actually believed me and knew what I meant when I said giving is better than receiving.



Photobucket




No more animals allowed in our house, unless they're this kind:


Photobucket



They got so many nice things.....lots of books, fun toys, clothes and cuddly pajamas, journals and notebooks to write their thoughts, etc.


And Santa heard the pleas of 3 little girls and brought them the dolls of their dreams:


Photobucket


"American dolls" as the girls call them. I love how they each look like them. Arissa's is blonde, and has her exact hair cut. It even has a retainer & braces set, just like Arissa. :) Mallory's has tiny little bangs, and earrings (just like her). Mariah's has no bangs, and a slightly darker skin tone (which, when summer comes, will match her exactly because she tans like nobody's business).

The girls instantly fell in love with them as well:



Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket




The girls, happy as they were with all their gifts, kept reminding me how Christmas isn't about presents, it's about Jesus. And being reminded of that by your kids is pretty humbling and sweet. :)

It was a merry Christmas.

karl strauss

To celebrate Christmas Eve-eve (and mostly just to make Jesse happy), we went downtown to Karl Strauss.


Photobucket






We needed to get a gift for my dad, and Jesse picked up one for himself too (the two growlers of Karl Strauss beer, in the pic above).



Oh and also Jesse was craving this:



Photobucket



So he got his Christmas miracle and was happy all night.


Mallory used her drink coaster to draw little "Karls":


:)



Photobucket

Snowmen & Trees

I made a few of these finger puppets for Thanksgiving:


Photobucket





I had found a cute pattern online for them so I made them for a few of the "little ones" in my life (including my wee bitty neice who found it entertaining but could only be trusted with it for a few seconds befor she put it in her mouth and attempted to swallow it).





I wanted to make some for Christmas, so I made my own little patterns/templates for these guys:




Photobucket




These aren't finished in that picture; I still had to stitch the gloves on the snowmen, and then sew the "ornaments" on the christmas trees:




Photobucket




I sent a few of them out with my christmas cards that were going to families with little ones. They're lots of fun to make, and not too labor intensive. Once Jesse told me the snowman looked like a boxer with his gloves on, because of the gloves & the way his arms are positioned, that's what I saw every time I looked at them and it made me laugh.






Photobucket

"Santa....I KNOW him!!"

Photobucket



We ventured out in the pouring rain the weekend before Christmas to get our picture taken with Santa.



Photobucket



The girls took turns telling him each and every thing they were wishing for.



Photobucket



Photobucket

Photobucket


We were in and out of there in a flash, and if you buy a single picture they let you take as many shots as you want with your own camera, which made me very happy. It was totally worth it, despite the rain.

Merry Christmas...




...from our family to yours.





Photobucket

DT Christmas Party

The Drill Team Christmas Party is one of the highlights of the Christmas season for all 5 of us.



It's always sure to be fun.



There's lots of friends to play with:


Photobucket



Fun games to play and presents to open:


Photobucket

Photobucket





This year it felt like summertime. All the girls had pink cheeks and everyone tried to get a seat in the shade. I'm pretty sure it was hotter than when we had the DT pool party in August. Go figure.






Jesse video-taped all the fun:



Photobucket










Mariah got a tummy ache and left early :O(




Photobucket







The DT had won 1st place in two parades the previous day, so this little guy (girl, I guess) commemorated their victory:



Photobucket








Sherry made each of the girls these amazing gifts, too beautiful & special to be eaten:


Photobucket








My favorite part was this little gingerbread man:




Photobucket





Photobucket



Me, Mauree, and a hot december San Diego sunset:

Photobucket


Arissa gave out Silly Bandz to the team for Christmas. It's amazing how much kids like those things!



Jesse made these Christmas gifts for the adults at the party...and it's equally amazing how much adults like these:



Photobucket








And I made a few "I-Spy" bags for the DT siblings. I wasn't sure about them, I thought maybe they're too babyish. But I figured if they didn't like them, they'd at least have fun swinging them around until my stitching gave out and the rice flew everywhere. Either way, it'd be fun for them:



Photobucket



Only one of the siblings was at the party, but to my surprise, she seemed to really like it. She found all the items right away, then went from person to person and showed them how good she was at finding everything.



Then 10 minutes later I'd look up and one of the big DT girls would be playing with it.



Then I'd go into another room and I'd see a few of them huddled up and I saw they were seeing if they could find all the items. Even the oldest girls were playing with it at one point. It was funny to me, and I was so glad they thought it was fun to use it as it was inteneded, instead of just seeing how many times you can throw it before it explodes in an flurry of rice confetti.


Photobucket



I have a thing for gingerbread men. This little guy was my favorite thing on the list of things to "spy":




Photobucket


I got orders for 3 more of the I-Spy bags so somehow I have to get to work on those, in between making/wrapping Christmas gifts, & baking/decorating/packaging up 150 gingerbread men for my girls classmates!

Nana's 90th

Today is my Nana's 90th birthday. I can't believe she's 90 (they grow up so fast). I can't believe that at 90 years old she still keeps house better than me and has more energy than me. I am so thankful for her. She deserves the best birthday gift that money can buy, but instead we did our best to throw her a sweet, simple little party.


She didn't want a party. She didn't want me to make a fuss over her, she didn't want people to feel obligated to come to a party for her with all the other stuff they probably had going on.



She told me if I threw her one, I'd be in trouble.



But I finally convinced her that I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I did nothing, and couldn't we just have a few family and close friends over? She agreed.




So I set to planning. But for those of you who don't know, I've had a weird couple of months since October, which made focusing on this party and planning it kind of challenging. Yet, it was really important to me so I was determined.



I wanted to have party favors to hand out, so I got some fancy little frames and put a picture of my grandma in her youth:



Photobucket






And then tried to wrap them up prettily. I don't know why, but I like the look of plain packages, tied with string. I added doilies and a paper rose in an attempt to make it look kind of vintage:



Photobucket




We played "Dee Bingo", which was my version of Bingo but with facts/info about my Grandma and the year/times in which she was born. I used paper butterflies for the space markers:


Photobucket




She received some lovely gifts and sweet cards which she was surprised and delighted by:


Photobucket





My girls all wrote her a little note and read it aloud (Mariah got the jitters so I read hers for her):



Photobucket




We handed out the party favors and everyone seemed to really like them...even the younger guests (which I thought was so sweet):



Photobucket


Nana took time to visit with each of her guests, and she was just so happy that people came to celebrate her. She and Jesse's grandma have a special friendship which is so sweet it makes me teary:



Photobucket

Photobucket


And our gift to Nana (besides a pretty mini rose plant) was a video. We love making those. :)

This one though is counting as my "christmas miracle" of 2010. This is why:

As I said, I began working on it back in October, those "weird" months I mentioned previously, during which it was hard for me to even function. I snuck over to my Grandma's and pulled out all her old photo albums and took pictures of each of her old photos. That way I had them all available digitally so that not only could I use them for this birthday project, but they're now all safely on our computer, backed up in cyberspace so that even if all of Lemon Grove goes up in flames for some reason, those pictures are safe and sound.

About a month before the party, I started putting our video together. I adjusted each and every picture in Photoshop. Some of them I just had to crop or resize, some had rips or tears or discoloration so I had to do more work to fix them. I picked the songs, I organized all the photos, and by December 6th, I had it all ready to be burnt to a dvd. Then a funny thing happened.

Our computer froze, shut itself down, and wouldn't turn back on. When I tried to turn it on, all I got was a blue screen telling me it was "dumping physical memory". Which is greek to me, but did not sound good at all.

So Jesse decided the best (and probably only) option was to wipe out the entire computer, and re-install all of our programs. That alone took 48 hours. The photos were all safe, because we had them on an external hard drive. But all the work I did in fixing/cropping them had to be re-done. And then the video, which had been finished, had to be completely re-done. I was heartsick and panicked and stressed. That video was not only a big part of the party, but it was our GIFT to my grandma. Plus I worked really hard on it. I had a huge ache in my chest the whole week until the video was re-created and burnt to a disc so I knew it was safe and our computer couldn't destroy it again.

I spent 6 hours on Tuesday night re-doing everything. Come Wednesday morning, it was done and burnt and the ache in my chest was gone. I even had time to watch it on our tv and decide to make a few more changes which we did on Thursday and burnt it again and had it in time for the party.

So this is our tribute to my sweet amazing Nana (and my 2010 Christmas Miracle):


Parades & Photoshoots

The DT girls had 4 parades in 1 weekend, and in the middle of it all they did their annual photoshoot so we tagged along.






Photobucket





Photobucket


Photobucket








Jesse wanted to videotape the whole thing. He got some interesting shots:




Photobucket





I didn't take 50,000 shots like I did in years past. But I still got some sweet ones.




Photobucket



Photobucket


It was a fun day. M&M were with Nana so Jesse and I were free to follow the group around from place to place. Seeing them sparkle and shine and hearing the people cheer for them is so awesome. I told Arissa how neat it is to hear the comments people make about them. No one knows that Jesse and I are 'with the team' as we're walking by (unless I'm screaming and clapping for them) and people are always saying how talented the girls are, how impressive they were, how cute and wonderful they are. It's fun to hear random people (who didn't give birth to and raise a girl on the team and would think they're awesome no matter what) say how terrffic they are.

Related Posts with Thumbnails