Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Eve Shenanigans

Well, Christmas has come and gone for another year. But my memories of this one will last forever. We had such a good Christmas this year. I'll start with Christmas Eve. As has been the tradition for the last three years, we have hosted my husband's side of the family for Christmas Eve. While they were growing up, that was always the night that they celebrated Christmas and it still works well for us today because we always know that Christmas Eve is for his side and Christmas Day is for my side. Then no one has to share! I love it!
Anyway, we went to the very early 3:00 pm church service at our church. I thought it was nice but my husband thought that things were a little too jazzy. Don't mess with his Christmas Carols. Leave them traditional please!
When we got home, we did a quick straighten-up before everyone came over. Here we are greeting our first guests.

Judy helped me by taking lots and lots of pictures this year. Thanks, Judy! I would have missed out on a lot of shots. Including this one where I have no idea what Hayley is doing but it must be pretty funny judging from the look on Amy's face!

Here are several of the cousins with the sign that I made earlier in the evening, which is a message to their aunt (my sister-in-law) who lives in Texas. We wish she and her family had been able to join us this year.

So for part of my and Deanna's presents from various members of Anne's family, she had included photos of our husbands as little boys that she had blown up and framed, We thought they were super cute and had our husbands pose with their photo. As you can see from their body language, they had a message for their little sister. Hee-hee!


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Blizzard

The year was 1982, I was seventeen years old and I had been dating a boy for about a year and a half. I invited him to come to Christmas Eve services with me and my family and then come back to the house for snacks, etc. It was going to be great because I LOVE Christmas Eve and the boy I loved would be there to share it with me.

It had already been snowing for awhile when he left his house and he walked over since a.) we were all going to drive down to church together and b) his car wasn't exactly a snow car. This was not the first time he had been to my house, of course and he knew there would be a crowd. Everyone was there. My mom and dad. My grandma. My two older sisters and their husbands, and the younger four siblings. We all ate dinner and hung out talking around the table for awhile and then we received a phone call from someone at church that services were being cancelled because of the blizzard conditions. We looked out and it was amazing how much snow had fallen in such a short period of time! But this was Colorado after all and snow is kinda normal in the winter. Duh!

Everyone was having a good time, playing games, watching TV movies, making out in the basement. Um, that sounds bad. It was really just me and him making out. Not everyone else. Ahem, moving on. . . it's just that no one was in a big hurry to leave.

And it's a good thing too because there was no way any one COULD leave! The roads were awful and the snow was so deep that my sisters and their husbands and my Grandma decided to just stay the night. I was so looking forward to my boyfriend spending the night too. Nothing dirty I promise (!) but it would be fun to have him around for the morning festivities, that's all!

Around 11:30 or so, I went to ask my dad.

"Dad? Is it okay if Tim just spends the night too?"

"Absolutely not."

"But, Dad! The roads are REALLY bad. And there is NO way he can walk home in this."

"I'll take him home. That's what four wheel drive is for."

So out we went to clean off the Suburban and get him home. We headed down our street and it was clear that we were the only idiots on the road. There was NO one else around. We didn't see anyone, no plow drivers, nothing. This ended up being a good thing because it there was absolutely no way we were going to be able to observe any rules of the road. No stopping for stop signs. No stopping for red lights. If we didn't keep that truck in motion it was going to get stuck for sure.

When we were about a block from Tim's house, my dad told him that he was just going to slow down and that Tim would have to just jump from the truck. I totally thought he was kidding and started laughing. When he didn't laugh along, I knew he was serious. When we got to his street, my dad slowed down to about 5 mph and Tim opened up the door and jumped out. I pulled the door closed from the inside and we just kept driving! I looked back and saw Tim making his way through the three feet of snow and knew that he'd get home just fine. Dad and I drove up the next main street to work our way back home. It was really slow going and took us about 30 minutes to do what normally would take 5.

That boyfriend became my husband and he and my dad always had a great time retelling this story. It's always fun to see people's faces when I ask them, "Wanna hear about the time my dad made my boyfriend jump out of a moving car?"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Talk Me Down

We in the Denver area currently have our own "Bob Vance, Vance Refrigeration" going on right now with a huge cold front that has come through town. Seriously? -18? That's just nuts!

And the cold weather has made me want to stay inside, watch "The Office" on DVD, and do crafts. Which brings us to my newest obsession. The Big Shot. Isn't she a beaut? This woman , by her creatively genius mind and seriously cute ideas, has single-handedly created a monster in me. Should I buy it? Should I wait and ask for it for my birthday? But what if I don't get it? And do I really need it? Or will it join others on eBay who thought they were going to a permanent home where they would be loved for all time, only to be discarded when the next best thing came along. (Which reminds me, did any one else ever think their dolls would be jealous of the other toys if you played with them more?). I have my Stampin' Up consultant standing by on speed dial just in case I decide I can't live without it. They even sell a set that includes the Big Shot and all the accessories needed to "create splendid projects in a breeze"! "I wanna create splendid projects in a breeze NOW" (said in my best Veruca Salt voice).

So who's gonna talk me down? Or help me up on the bandwagon?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Black Friday Shopping

Shopping on Black Friday is not something I ever thought I would do. I hate crowds and just the thought of pushing through throngs of unhappy shoppers makes me cringe. Big time. A and I talked about it and while we didn't really need to do much for Christmas shopping we did need to get her a new pair of jeans and some shampoo. Black Friday is a good time to do this, no? OMIGOSH! We had the Best. Time. Ever!

Our day started off at 5:30 a.m. with a quick stop at Starbucks for coffee and sustenance (aka Pumpkin Loaf). We ate our delicious breakfast on our way to our first stop, JC Penney. We were totally surprised that there were not too many cars in the lot. Anyway, so we go in and head for the clothing section and make our selections. We were in the fitting room for only about 15 minutes and when we came out it was like the whole store had exploded with customers! They were everywhere! In fact, there were two ladies who were starting to strip down right in the dressing room hallway when we were leaving. Hello? This is not just a ladies dressing room!

So anyway, we had our jeans and went over to look at coats. While we were being ridiculous (as we almost ALWAYS are when we are together) we could hear people laughing a few feet away from us. We looked over and saw the same two ladies from the dressing room and they were removing a dress from a mannequin! Then the one stood there holding the mannequin's arms while the other took the dress back to the dressing room for round two. It was hilarious! When the first decided that it was indeed the dress she wanted she and her friend looked around for another dress so the mannequin would not be left naked and armless. I am sad that I never thought to strip a mannequin in search of the perfect outfit. *Pout*.

Target was our next adventure. We had the whole health and beauty section to ourselves! Seems no one wanted to buy shampoo on Black Friday. Who knew? We loaded our cart with shampoo, toothpaste, a pair of shoes, some Christmas dish towels, a shower curtain and The Office dvd's. Not a present in sight.

By now we were tired so we hit the grocery store and then came home. But there was so much fun and ridiculousness! We had a great time and think that this might just be a new tradition for us. Oh! And we ended up with the greatest deals. Nothing we bought was full price and we got A a $200 coat for $89.99. And The Office seasons 2 and 3 for $13.98 each. You can't beat deals like that!

Saturday, November 29, 2008


I have been in the mood for sewing and crafts lately! My car is automatically trying to go to Joann's every time I get in it. Seriously, I have been there three times since last Wednesday!

Here is some of what I've been making:

This started out to be a tote bag for my niece for Christmas. The problem is, I made it for the wrong niece! I thought we had drawn Madison's name when really we drew Shannon's. So now it's back to the drawing board for a gift for Shannon and A just got herself a new tote bag!

This was supposed to be a birthday present for my sister. She is crazy for watermelon prints! It is a notepad and pen cover. This is a picture of the outside. See that dark area right in the middle of the right hand side? It really is the fabric. It was supposed to look like watermelon rind but in the position it's in it looks like a grease spot!

And here is what it looks like opened up:

It didn't turn out as well as I had hoped, what with the grease-looking spot and the turned down corners. She will still be getting it, but not for her birthday.

Tomorrow, I plan to do a lot of our Christmas baking so I'll post some pictures of the goodies later!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! It is shaping up to be a gorgeous day here in colorful Colorado. It's partly cloudy with the promise of getting more cloudy and that is something I am thankful for.

As it is a day of giving thanks, I am thankful for so much:
  • a warm home filled with healthy people
  • a good and kind husband
  • a smart and funny kid
  • happy puppies
  • my extended crazy family (both sides!)
  • my favorite sister
  • plenty of food (more than my fair share, to be sure)

There is so much in every day to be grateful for. Even on the days when we are cranky and nothing seems to be going our way.

A note to myself: take some time out every day do give thanks to God for ALL that you have. Including the little things that sound so stupid (like cream for your coffee and the fact that Costco is once again carrying your favorite brand of feminine hygiene products). Good things are the little things.

Love and happy Thanksgiving to you all!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Hour!

After re-reading my last two posts one right after the other, I think I need to change the name of this blog to "Things that Suck"! Sorry for using that term so much. Can you tell I have a teenager living at home?

So in the interest of keeping with a theme, here is something that I have been LOVING to suck. Oh, get your minds out of the gutter!
I'm talking about a Sonic Lemon-Berry Slush. Or nectar of the gods. You pick. And who else is over the moon that Sonic's Happy Hour lasted longer than the summer?

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Mean People Suck

Ok, so I know that I am a big person. And I have occassionaly received rude comments from people driving by or something. But what is happening to my sister in law is really bad.

She has gained weight over the last few years, which is not unheard of once you turn forty. She has been out of work due to surgery twice this year (broken ankle and hysterectomy). After this last surgery, she just started back to work this past week. Within one day she had two separate people come up to her and say something about her weight. The first guy said "Hey! Something about you looks different!" And she said, "Oh, I know! I have let my hair grow out a lot!" (Her hair was super short before and now is about chin length). He said "No, it's because of this" and put his hands out in front of him as if to show a Santa belly. Of course she was horrified and just said "That was not very nice of you to say" and walked away.

Not an hour later, a woman came up to her and said "God, girl! You have really packed it ON!" Um, this is helpful how? And these are people whom she works with? With friends like that, who needs enemies?

Like I said earlier, occasionally I get a rude comment about my weight to my face. And I'm sure people talk about me behind my back. But come on! A co-worker? (Okay in re-reading this I am reminded of a certain man I used to work with who made a comment after I offered him one of the pastries that I had brought in that day saying "No, I better not otherwise I'll look like you!" To which I replied, "Don't EVER be rude to me again!". )

I told her to move back to Colorado because we don't have nearly as many rude folks as they do where she lives. I just feel so bad for her because I know it feels to be judged only by how you look.

How about you? Have you ever experienced anything like this? How did you handle it?

Mean people suck.

Friday, October 17, 2008


Omigosh, I suck as a blogger! Not that I have tons of readers or anything but I feel like I'm letting people down when I don't post anything. But right now things are crazy at work and I don't really know if I want to blog about anything to do with work anyway.

I don't think I would be Dooced or anything but it's still a little weird to think that someone I work with would even SEE this blog. But I guess it's possible.

So work and marching band competitions are ruling my life right now. Tomorrow is another competition. But then next weekend is State and then I am all done. Not just for this school year but for good. It's kinda weird. We have lived, breathed and eaten marching band every fall for the last four years with A being IN the band, me being on the boosters board and T helping wherever he can. But it's A's senior year and she hasn't decided if she's going to do marching band in college. I guess that will depend on which college she even ends up going to (which is another post all to itself).

So yeah, fall is my favorite time of the year and it's been going by too fast to even really enjoy it. But tomorrow I will slow down, not do any work and try to enjoy my last "Pomona Marching Festival". It'll be good.

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Everybody's Doing It!

I know everybody has already done this and I'm sorta late to the game, but it was fun! And you should give it a try and then post it on your blog and tell me about it so I can come look!

Here's how to do it:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flicker
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into Mosaic Maker

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Too Noisy!

Do noises bother you? They do me. I have to sleep with earplugs in no matter what. But today things are really bothering me. So here is a list of things that make me want to stick my head in a vacuum where I can't hear anything.

People chewing with their mouth open.
People chewing crunchy things.
(If a person were to eat Cap'n Crunch with their mouth open, I'd probably have to stick an ice pick in my ear.)
The sounds that some people (mostly guys) make when they have a head cold.
When somebody is listening to music but it's low enough that I can't really hear anything other than a tinny sound or the bass.
Gum chewing and popping.
Snoring (even if I am not trying to sleep).
Dogs licking their feet (or other parts!)
People talking to themselves.
Non-stop barking dogs.

So am I a total freak or do these things bother you too?

Monday, September 29, 2008

Costco, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?

So when did Costco quit selling Playtex tampons? Do that many people really prefer Tampax? Does anyone know how to reach the powers that be at Costco to demand the return of my preferred tub'o'tampons?

Because, really? It's like adding insult to injury to have to pay $6.77 for 36 at The Dark Side.

That is all.

Another Weekend Come and Gone

Another bleary-eyed Monday morning here. WHY can I not get a decent night's sleep on Sunday nights? It's been that way for years so I don't know why I'm surprised anymore. Buy I even took an Ambien! That should make it all better, right? Except I kept dreaming that my sister was moving to another house and that another sister was taking over the current house. And sister #1 was making me tell sister #2 that the house had large mice. "No, no, they are NOT rats! Just large mice." Weird!

Anyway, it was a quick weekend. T gave our computer a virus on Friday by clicking on to some weird website. Both the anti-virus and spy ware programs popped up to warn of the virus but it was too late. So now my computer is in the shop and I am having withdrawals from all my daily surfing. I had to borrow this computer to blog, but I don't have any of my bookmarks on it so it's not so good for surfing.

Saturday was CSU Band Days for marching band. It was absolutely gorgeous in Fort Collins and it was a fun day. GMHS took 2nd place in 4A competition and 3rd place overall. They thought they sucked but they looked good to us! It will help tremendously when the have their whole show on the field.

Yesterday was absolutely FULL of puttering-style housework. I love to putter. I dusted and vacuumed the living room, polished the furniture in the dining room, baked cookies (chocolate chips with nuts), did about 10 loads of laundry, changed the sheets and blankets on the bed, and read a few chapters in my book. I also went to Costco and then to The Dark Side (Wal-Mart) which is another story in itself. Doesn't that sound like enough to be able to fall asleep and stay asleep last night?

Maybe a small nap this afternoon might be in order.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sisters and The Names They Call Me

I just finished reading a great book by Megan Crane called Names My Sisters Call Me. In it she tells a story of three sisters who have been estranged for 6 years mainly because of the actions of the middle sister at the older sister's wedding. It is a great story and I recommend it to anyone who has sisters.

At the back of the book she lists "5 names your sister calls you when she thinks you can't hear her. (or worse, when she's certain you can)". Those five names are Bossy, Snobby, Crazy, Selfish, and Just Like Mom.

Um, like those are BAD things? See, my sisters call me three of the five (that I know about). And I'm okay with that. Let's discuss.

First off is bossy. Being the third of seven children, I think this one just goes without saying. My bossiness comes out mostly when either people are indecisive or not following The Rules. It drives me batty to try to get together with people and decide on a restaurant or activity. Some people say "I don't care where we go" but when you make a suggestion, they say no. If you have a preference, say so. If you don't then that means anything I say is okay with you. Just DECIDE already!

Second is snobby. I AM but not how she means it in the book. She is talking about disapproving of one's life choices. I am snobby about sheets, ice cream and manners. And other things that I will think of later I'm sure. :)

Last is Just Like Mom. My mom can drive me nuts sometimes. But she's a strong, smart woman who does her own thing. And I am proud to be just like her!

Crazy and Selfish I haven't heard yet. But its still early in the week.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Perfect Saturday Plans

I love, love, love when I get a Saturday to just kinda do what I want. Today is one of those days! I must be excited because when else do I get up at 5:30 on a Saturday morning. Um, never, that's when.

T is off riding his mountain bike over mountains, down in valleys, and back up the mountain again. Hopefully there will be much riding and not much crashing. See, he rides with other medical professionals. You would think that would be a good thing, wouldn't you? Um, not really. When any of them crash, sure, someone will come back and check to make sure they are not dead. But anything less than death will get you a big ol' "That's gonna leave a mark! Let's ride!". It really warms your heart, right?

A is at band rehearsal all day. Again. The season hasn't even really began (first competition is this Tuesday) and she is already done. It will get better once the performances start, but rehearsals are getting to be pretty boring by this point. Today they are doing a demonstration for the parents but I can't go since I will be waiting for the cable man. Or woman, I guess. At any rate, I will see their performance for the first time on Tuesday evening. In a way, I'm glad. It will keep it a surprise for that much longer. And it's not like I don't get to see it 8 more times before the season ends.

So today I am on my own. I plan to go shopping for some new jeans, some new tops, maybe a new necklace. I want to get a dress, but first I need to find some shoes that a) don't look stupid with dresses and b) still feel comfortable.

I'd like to do some sewing, clean up my scrapbook table and start designing my Christmas cards for this year. I also want to make some of this delicious looking fall mix from bSunday Baker to share at marching competition this week.

All this time I will be waiting for aforementioned cable person. Yes, today I am getting more than the ghetto cable that I currently have. The Colbert Report shall be mine! And HGTV! And Animal Planet!

Oh wait. Once the cable person leaves, all the rest of my plans may be down the drain. Shoot.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Ten Things I Love

So, here I am starting a new blog. As you get to know me you will find out WAY more than you ever wanted to. But just to start things off, here are ten things I LOVE (in no particular order):

1. Fall, Autumn, whatever season it almost is (yay!)
2. Yellow labs
3. Driving fast
4. Iced tea
5. Reading books on a rainy afternoon, followed by a nap.
6. Having an afternoon to myself
7. Filling in boxes, you know, like on surveys and applications (it's a sickness that runs in my family)
8. Having a 17 year old daughter
9. Office supplies
10. Being at home

Now you! Tell me 10 things you love!