Saturday, December 29, 2007

It was a good year, I remember it well...

One thing I love about the holidays is the movies. Not new movies at the theater, but old movies on the tv. I enjoy watching the 'made for tv' Christmas movies on lifetime, as well as the classics the cable channels show. Tonight while my sweet husband was watching NFL history(in case you don't know the Patriots are attempting to do the very rare thing that is play an undefeated regular season making television history by being simulcast on 4 different networks. This is HUGE, or so I am told.), i stumbled upon a classic.

The year was 1988. The movie is one I can remember watching over and over again, and even now as an adult I love seeing it. It doesn't even seem real that 1988 was 20 years ago! Seriously where has the time gone?

So during commercial breaks I wondered about the year 1988, so I googled it. Definitely not something we could have done in 1988. I am not sure our Commodore 64 with the black screen and green letters, could have even handled something like the internet. My how things have changed!

The movie description is this: A wishing machine turns a boy into a 35 year old man with a fun job and a girlfriend.

Do you know it yet?

Maybe this will ring a bell:


Ok. now you got it!

BIG. I love that movie and quite frankly they just don't make movies like they used to.
So here are a few interesting facts I found on the 1988 website, I left out the 482 different news clips on Mike Tyson--he had a crazy year. Here you go:

February 23 Chicago gives Cubs right to install lights and play up to 18 night games
June 3 "Big," premieres in U.S.
August 17 Republicans nominate George H. W. Bush for president
August 28 40th Emmy Awards: 30something, Wonder Years and Richard Kiley
September 10 Hurricane Gilbert, kills 300 in Jamaica, Texas and Yucatan
September 25 Florence Griffith Joyner runs Olympic record 100m in 10.54s
September 30 IBM announces shipment of 3 millionth PS/2 personal computer

September 30 Los Angeles Dodger Orel Herschiser breaks former Dodger Don Drysdale mark by pitching 59 consecutive scoreless innings
October 1 Mikhail Gorbachev becomes president of Soviet Union
October 19 Senate passes bill curbing ads during children's TV shows
October 31 1st Monday Night NFL game in Indianapolis, Colts beat Denver 55-23
November 8 George Bush beats Mike Dukakis for presidency

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Deck the halls....

Ok, so I am a bit late with the showing of all things Christmas in my home, but better late than never! We put our tree (s) up on November 1st typically. It is such a busy time of year for Aaron and I that it is just more enjoyable for us to get it all decorated before the craziness starts.

We hope you all had a FABULOUS MERRY CHRISTMAS! Our favorite memory of the holiday this year was on Christmas Eve. We popped some cookies in the oven when we arrived home at 10pm and while they baked I read The Christmas Story to AJ and JP. The four od us sat on the couch all snuggled together smelling yummy cookies and reading under the glow of the twinkling lights. It was awesome. It was topped off by BOTH children falling asleep in my arms just as I reached the end of the story. So we scooped them up put them to bed, left cookies and milk for santa, carrots for the reindeer, and off we went to bed at 11pm. It was magical!

This is the little people Christmas village.

A child friendly nativity by playmobil.

another child friendly plush nativity

The famous little people nativity. This 'box' is a 12' long box that serves as storage for excess toys, as well as extra seating for watching pool tournaments in our family room.

This is the playmobil christmas house that sits on our coffee table in the family room.

This is the family room christmas tree which has colored lights and is decorated with family ornaments through the years.

This is the playroom christmas tree which has colored lights and sports and princess ornaments. don't you just love the castle play house my dad built for AJ.

This is JP's special nativity. He loves decorating his desk himself.

This is my favorite nativity, which sits on top of our mantel. I did not know until after I took the picture that someone had put a baby pig where Jesus should be. Hmm...I wonder who did that?

This is where JP displayed all his gingerbread creations for the holiday season. Normally I wouldn't do that, but he was so proud of his creations!

This old world santa is in the living room upstairs. we also have fun with the snowman tic tac toe on the bottom shelf.

OK since you are probably getting tired of looking I thought maybe you should turn your head sideways for this one! :) This is the tree and first stockings we had as a family. They now find their home in the master bedroom.

This is AJ's tree with purple lights in her surfer girl bedroom. The sun was a bit bright so the pic is a tad dark.

This is JP's tree in his bedroom. He is a bit of a penguin fan, so he made an elaborate setup in which NO ONE is to touch. All his plush penguins are set up at the base of the tree with presents intertwined amongst them.

this is the kids fishy bathroom, which in the next couple of weeks will be getting a formal face lift into a more adult theme since it is the main bathroom company uses.

This is the entry table where I change the photos according to the season. The gold tray stays there year round and is where christmas cards are put, along with baby announcements etc.

this is our dining room table, which I love, but I am disappointed in its durability with children. So as beautiful as it is we don't use it.

This is our breakfast nook. JP bought me the placemats and chair covers for my birthday last year. They look really cute in here! this is where the kids always eat, now that the fancy table is off limits. I love this table, it is an antique farm table meant for rough and tough people. The chairs I picked up 10 years ago at a flea market and they are 2 sets of antique chairs with leather seats.

last but not least is my favorite tree the 9 1/2 foot clear light mom decorated tree in our living room. With coordinated wrapped gifts of course! I love this tree.
Hope you enjoyed the tour!
Now it is time for me to find room for all the toys Santa and family blessed us with.
wish me luck, I am going to need it!

Friday, December 21, 2007


Reason #42 to not buy BULK products:

When you drop the 3 pound FULL NEW tub of butter it will crack and spew butter all over the fridge.

You think it will keep just as well in a tupperware? Or shall I just continue the day with the tin foil wrapped butter tub?

Hmmm....decisions, decisions.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


The other day AJ and I had a leisurely morning. These are rare for us. We virtuely never stay home while bub is at school.

As we snuggled on the couch and watched 'a little girl' show, something hit me. A wake-up call if you will. AJ had asked me if I would just carry her to the bathroom.

Right then I realized the days of carrying her are so very limited. Everyday she becomes more independent. So I made her a promise that I will always stop to snuggle her or carry her when she asks.

Now I am aware it will be a tough one, but I have to do it. Every year seems to go faster than the previous and before I know it there won't be any little people left in my house.

The best part about this little promise, is that it came on a day when I should have been at school helping with a craft I sent in. Now rarely do I decline to help anyone, but when Ms. M asked if I would like to come do the craft with the kids, I declined. Wow. So big for me!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Dinner and a movie....

well if you count popcorn as a meal that is!


Check out this great giveaway. It has yummy popcorn from here.

AND a years worth of movies from here.


I love me some free things.

Wordless Wednesday--from the archives

Those are some tired shopper's

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

My new BFF

Sunday afternoon I was driving home from the giftshop and right there in the middle of the expressway I saw the vision of our family Christmas card. I briefly let off the gas as I viewed this amazing card that blocked my vision of the road.

Then it was gone and the excitement filled me, so I sped home ready to launch into Christmas card 2007 photo taking.

We needed to leave for a Christmas party when I got home, so the children were already dressed. As I leaped into the house, I announced, "CHANGE OF PLANS!"

I burst into the kids closets and began throwing clothes out and asking everyone to change. Luckily the kids saw my excitement and did not argue with the need to cooperate in changing yet again.

So outside we went with tripod in hand to capture the right photo, when MY DAD walked down the street. "aaah" Perfect Dad can take the picture. THere are definite advantages to having your parents 2 doors down the street.

The perfect picture was captured, so off we went to the Christmas party just 15 minutes late. Fashionable, right?

When we got home I immediately began working on the card. Everything was smooth until it was time to print. I actually had not used my printer since probably last Christmas, so it was making all kinds of grumps and groans and not working up to its ability. So once again, down to my parents to their printer.

Still not the quality I was envisioning. So to bed I went.

Monday morning I woke ready to give up the envisioned card and just go to Sam's. After calling though, I would be unable to get my card for 2 days and all that driving.


Staples called my name with their photo copiers. I'll try that.

Yea, not so much. THe copy worked fine, except for cutting off half the card because their self-copying directions were , well written in Chinese. Not to mention the cost was 14 cents more than they told me. So I left staples with a 53 cent charge on my credit card.

Off to Sir Speedy. I walked in feeling a bit discouraged and held up my "artwork" like a proud child, "Can you color copy this with 2 to a page, pretty please?"

The man with the VERY blue eyes says yes, but I can get 3 on a page.

3! you are saving me money! Whoohoo!

Then he asks if I want cardstock, at no extra charge. Seriously? Well yes I want cardstock.

Excitement building.

Then he tells me they will be ready TODAY. I may have leaped with joy.

So at 5 pm I had my dear husband pick up my cards, which by the way Ole blue eyes even CUT for me! It is probabaly a good thing I did not pick them up because I might have climbed across the counter to give blue eyes a kiss because did I mention yet that the 75 cardstock cards already cut up only cost $9.50.

And we all know I love a bargain. I will sooo be using Sir Speedy next year, only probably in November!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Happy Birthday to my hubby!

Isn't he dreamy?
On this day just 13 days after I was born, my husband was born. A man I was meant to marry. You see my mom WAS going to name me Erin Elizabeth, but for some reason when I was born and she looked at me she said no this is a Jennifer Marie not an Erin Elizabeth. I am so glad she did that because I am not sure that Aaron would have dated and Erin.

So 10 years ago, it was Aaron's birthday that brought us together. Since I have a weird memory I have always known when his birthday was, so when I was at Baylor I mailed him a birthday card. From that a first date in Dallas occurred and the rest is just history....

this should be posting on friday am

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Get me out of Fast Forward....

The sheer panic has set in.

I am freaking out.

There are 12 days till Christmas.

12 days.

Ok now you are probably freaking out too.

If you live near me grab a piece of chocolate and a paper bag and find me, I NEED YOU!

Seriously what has happened with time? I feel like I am stuck in fast forward. I don't know what has happened with the last month. All my grand Christmas events have not happened and the wheather is really hindering them from occuring now.

Now who is the fool for falling for the 'wait till December' to do Christmas stuff. I AM!

It is December 13 and my son has not given his 'list' to Santa. We have not been to SDC to see him.

It is December 13 and we have not driven around town looking at Christmas lights.

It is December 13 and *shock* I have not had professional pics taken of the kids.

It is Decemberr 13 and I have not developed pictures from my camera since October 1st.

It is December 13 and I have not made my Christmas card. Haven't even chosen the idea or pictures.

It is December 13 and I have not finished wrapping and shipping out of town gifts. Maybe I will call them New Years gifts.

It is December 13 and I have not assembled the goody bags for the school party tomorrow.

The good news is that I work fabulous under pressure, or so my husband reminded me last night as I stood over the kitchen counter eating dinner, while sorting photos. Because when you are already behind you might as well sort 1 years worth of photos into order and spend 3 nights putting them into albums. I used to have the best photo system and organization, until I went digital. Remember all those photos ya'll used to receive???

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The best things are not planned...

Jolly ole St. Nick just happened to be greeting a tour bus on our parking lot at the old giftshop, so I ran and got AJ from her 'office'. She waited patiently while Santa 'worked' and then with eyes filled with wonder she walked over hopped up on his lap and told him she wanted Baby Alive. So glad I always have a camera with me. (ok I always have at least 2 cameras with me, if not 3) As we walked back to her 'office' , she started to tear up. I asked her what was wrong and she said, "I didn't teeell santa, merrrryy chrismus."

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

A Christmas Meme

I love Christmas. It is truly my favorite time of the year! Although I enjoy doing the decorating the kids have their own special decorations as well. Thankfully I can be at peace with the way they decorate their trees, even when all the ornaments are on one branch!

I love the traditions related with Christmas. We have many that date back to when my mom was a kid. We do St. Nick night on the 5th. Each child wakes to a small item at the table. This year JP got a pizza baking kit and ornament and AJ got a cookie baking kit and ornament. We also do the 12 days of Christmas stockings which the childrens maternal grandma fills. My grandma has done that for each of her grandchildren and now my mom does too. They are just sweet little things like chapstick, cars, candy, change, soap, or stickers. Every year we enjoy making a gingerbread house. This year the kids really enjoyed it! This year we started the tradition of Friday night Christmas movie night. We also do the advent calendar, which one of the great aunts sends each year. A new tradition is the birthday cake we make for Jesus.

So here is the list:

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
Love the wrapping paper. I love to match the coordinating papers to the fancy tree in the living room. Santa wraps the kids presents in 1 paper for each kid.

2. Real or artificial tree?
Artificial. The year my parents got a real tree my sister and I were so sick, since I was too little to remember an artificial tree is all I have ever known. But my 9 1/2 tree looks very real.

3. When do you put the tree up?
November 1st. I know I am completely out of the ordinary, but if I am going to put 8 trees up I don't want to rush and I want to enjoy them!

4. When do you take the tree down?
The week of New Years. I think it is usually down by the 5th. Aaron takes it all down. I put up, he takes down. It is a good system.

5. Do you like eggnog?
Absolutely NOT!

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
My first cabbage patch, she had red yarn hair and a pink outfit. My red hi-top converse are definitely up there too.

7. Do you have a nativity scene?
yes. Lots. My favorite is new this year and has a removable baby Jesus. It sets on our fireplace mantel. JP has his own large one, a mini one, and an ornament one. We also have a plush one to play with and of course the fisher price one too.

8. Hardest person to buy for?
Probably my Dad because he always says he doesn't want anything.

9. Easiest person to buy for?
My kids. I always over buy for them.

10. Worst Christmas gift you ever recieved?
Hmm? The one that comes to mind quickly is the lotion that I thought was toothpaste and I tasted it. GROSS!! It took cranberry juice to get the flavor out of my mouth!

11. Christmas card....mail or email?
Mail. I literally race home at the end of the day to see whose card came! I have however not even made my cards yet! Yikes...I am way late.

12. Favorite Christmas movie?
Home Alone.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
I shop year round. It is much easier on the finances. I have a present closet, that my children don't even go near. They know it is there, but they don't ask. They are so good!

14. Have you ever recycled a gift?
honestly no.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmastime?
EVERYTHING! I do not limit my self this time of year, so please pay no attention to the fact that my jeans do not fit! :) Angel pie, breakfast casserole, deviled eggs, fudge, ham....

16. Clear lights or colored?
Clear in living room, purple in AJ, color in JP, clear in my room, colored in kids bathroom, colored in downstairs bathroom, clear in sitting area, colored in play room, colored in family room.

17. Favorite Song?
anything by manheim steamroller

18. Travel at christmas or stay home?
We used to travel at Christmas with my parents, but now we have to stay home for business. Both our immediate families are in town, so we just miss out on the Greats. We try to see them other times of the year.

19. Can you name all the reindeer?
Yep, even olive!

20. Angel or Star?
lvr-star, AJ-hula girl, JP-star, bathroom-fish, my room-angel, family room-star, play room- ?, bathroom-?

21. Open the presents Christmas morning or eve?
Tradition is open 1 gift from an out of town person on Christmas eve. Then the rest Christmas morning. Santa at our house. All other gifts 2 doors down at my moms.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of year?
It is the busyiest time of year for my family. It is the last few weeks to sell as much as possible and hope the year ends great. Pray for the ice to melt and the power to go back on in our stores that are in the ice storm zone.

23. What i love most about Christmas?
I love entertaining at Christmas, this year I don't get to though. :(

Most of you have done this, but if you haven't give it a whirl!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

A swift kick in the...

3 long long days my computer has been acting up.

Do you think it is possible for the chemical make-up of one person to be completely harmful to computers? It is quite possible that every computer I touch blows up. I mean we are talking blue screen of death kinda thing.

Could it be true?

For 3 LONG days I have been unable to check my email from home.

You see I have been unable to use the 8, I, K, and comma keys. So I have been unable to log on since those keys are used in my logon name and or passwords.

Majorly frustrating.

So today I picked up the wireless keyboard and mouse my mom had for me to use. Now she used to use this very laptop with the wireless keyboard combo, with no problems.

Not so much for me.

I tried EVERYTHING to get the keyboard set up. I got the mouse set up no problem, but a mouse is really no good if you can't type letters.

So out of pure frustration I SLAMMED my hand down on the keyboard, locked it up, shut it down, and VOILA.....


When all else fails just kick, smack, slap, or maybe even throw the computer to get it to do what ya want!


Friday, December 7, 2007

Oh little town of Target...

We just arrived home from the Windy City. AJ drove the sleigh fabulously! The trip was great!

4 days
3 nights
3 states
24 hours of driving
33 hours shopping
8 restaurants
1 lost blankie
1 lost pair of sunglasses
1 banilla bear
1 lil baby Jesus
1 Susie
12 times watching my little pony
2 days of snow falling
6 elbows sharp running through a store
hours of fun laughing and giggling
and finished Christmas lists!

One of the most hysterically funny things was listening to AJ play babies on the drive. At one point she put 'lil baby Jesus' in timeout for jumping on 'susie' because we don't jump on people just trampolines.

It was also quite interesting the looks we got when AJ addressed her baby in the restaurants. Especially when she announced that Jesus need to go poo poo in her diaper. And yes Jesus was a baby girl, born from the aisles of Target. AJ fell in love with that baby and insisted on naming her Jesus after 5 minutes of calling her Billie Bah first.

Today she is still Jesus.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Where's my blankie?

There are 3 little words you never want to hear after you have spent 2+ hours shopping in a mall 9 hours from home....

Where's my blankie?


For more than 3 years I have kept up with that silly beloved super soft and silky pink blankie, and in one evening in the windy city I lose it!?

NO...that is just unacceptable. We only went to about 4 stores and only walked one hallway of the mall...we will find it.

So back through the traffic, frantically calling any of the stores we made purchases at to see if they had 'blankie'. No one had seen it. In fact so many people said, "What?" if they have never even heard of a 'blankie'.

What is up with these Yankees? Do they not know the importance of a blankie to a 3 year old? Do they not know how important a blankie is to a mommy travelling without daddy?


I checked every store we went in, even though we called them and still nothing.

I checked every trash can in the corridor we were in and stiill nothing.

Blankie is gone, it is a sad day in the life of AJ.

And mommy because I still have my first blankie so I know how important 'blankie' is to AJ.

She was brave and really only mommy shed some tears. We made the mad dash to Wal-mart for a replacement and they were closed at 10:30pm??? Seriously.

So a quick run into a place called Meijers, which looked a lot like a messy supercenter, we found a perfect replacement blankie.

Now I just hope tomorrow will be good, when AJ realizes it is not her favorite blankie.

Maybe if we are lucky when we head back to the mall tomorrow, some nice person will have turned it in to the lost and found. I HOPE!!!

note to self...always stick with your gut and take the jumbo stroller and NOT the umbrella one. Leave the coat in the car when it is "balmy", but that is another story.