Saturday, December 31, 2011

good-bye 2011 ...

I won't miss you.

so, that probably sounds a little harsh and maybe rude, sorry 2011 - I'm just keeping it real over here!  and, let me not be too dramatic, this year has definitely had many fine and fun moments ... but I am more than happy to say good-bye to all the crappy ones.  blech.

the two things that stand out furthest in my mind, are the two saddest parts of 2011.

you may remember, I can't remember if/what I posted, but the day of Zoey's birthday party (a day full of stress and tension not seen in my post or the pics of the day, I might add) my mom read on facebook that a family from her old church had lost their children in a car crash.  later that evening (the party was all over by then) she came in the kitchen and told me who it was ... I didn't know at first, as she was saying the dad's name (he was injured, but ok).  it was the nephews of a girl I went to school and church with when I was young.  I never knew the family well, but this event shook me.  for two months not a day went by that I didn't think about those boys' mommy ... and cry. cry and cry and cry. 

the next happened in August.  my mom called me one morning and asked me to be in prayer.  a friend's daughter had been hit by a car and was not doing well.  this situation was a little closer to me.  I actually did know the mama, I had gone to church with her when living with my parents during the hubby's time in Korea.  I knew them.  I taught sunday school several times - she (the mama) helped me get the hang of it when I first started and her girls were in the class.  I can still remember Kayla's eyes looking at me - and her spunk.  what a girl she was.  I was glued to her mama's posts on facebook ... always waiting to hear the latest update and praying for a miracle.  again, I cried.  for several days this went on ... and then, Kayla went to be with Jesus.  again, for weeks I'd cry every time I thought about her and her mama and sister and dad.  it's a heart-ache I pray I never have to know, to lose a child.  I just can't imagine how it would be to wake up every day and have to remember that they are gone from the earth forever.

so, yes, there has been some sadness this year.  I can't tell you how many people have been losing loved ones lately.  it makes you really stop and appreciate what you have.

so, beyond the sad parts of 2011 there was just some real crap.  dare I say this, it's been kinda shitty!!!  there, I said it.  I've dealt with some things that I've never dealt with (like seriously, high school was not even so drama filled and confusing and frustrating - maybe though because I'm looking at it fifteen years later?) and never imagined I'd deal with in my 30's.  ugh - my 30's - just writing that makes me feel so old, lol!  but, I guess we have to go through some situations in order to learn about life.  I've tried very hard to chalk it all up to a learning experience, but that doesn't take away the pain.  I don't need to elaborate on here, all that needs to be said is that I'm a lifetime sort of a friend and I don't deal well with losing relationships (and I might add it has hurt even more for my children to lose relationships & inclusion).  'nuff said.

so, 2011, you've held some amazingly craptastic moments for me and many of them I prefer to be erased from my memory entirely.  I just want to remember all the good stuff ... and thank goodness I have a year's worth of blog posts to do just that.  after all, I have photo after photo to look at of my beautiful, healthy children.  I have a husband who loves me.  I have a wonderful home.  we have food to eat.  we have nice clothes to wear and shoes on our feet.  we have love.  ok - sometimes that's hidden behind the sibling rivalry, but I choose to believe that it is there!

I have some pretty high hopes for 2012.  I'll be sharing those later, though.  for now - it's good riddance to you 2011.  you were great and not so great.  you were nice and not so nice.  I'll always cherish you, a little, but I don't want you back!

p.s.  our recent witnessing of a van hitting a curb/trashcans, sending it up and rolling across the road (it was driving in the oncoming lane) toward us was also not so fun.  but I must say, the drive through living nativity was pretty cool (we were coming home from it).  so, I guess you really do have to "weigh the good with the bad"! 

p.s.s. all this to say, I'm not trying to focus on the not so good parts ... but writing is my refuge and a good way for me to let go of things!!!  I don't need to mention all the good parts, cause -as I said- I have a year's worth of blog posts to remember all the good!!!

final project of 2011!!! (probably)

yah never know for sure with me, and I do have a few hours before we head out to party hardy and ring in the new year ... but this is most likely my final project for 2011!  Zoey's blanket!  I got the fabric probably two weeks ago, but with the bustle of Christmas and all our rearranging (we're gonna have a "new" house for the new year ... not literally, but we've been switching rooms around and rearranging - lots of change) and an order I needed to finish, the blanket got ignored.  but today I did it, finally!  yay!  just a few days late, but Zoey got her soft and cuddly blanket that was meant for Christmas!

the best Christmas pageant ever

did you ever see that movie? I loved it so much when I was younger, even though I couldn't have seen it more than a handful of times, since it was only at school that I saw it! anyway, I just couldn't resist using the movie title for this blog post ... a couple weeks ago the kids at our church did a little program on Sunday morning! it was so cute - I don't have any photos of the actual "performance", because I was videotaping, but trust me - it was adorable! I think my son (Jericho) and his buddy Jacob rockin out to "Joy to the World" -complete with shepherd hook guitars- was the highlight ... but maybe that's just me!

I decided to brave letting Liam be involved, so the night before I had to come up with his costume (ok, so I could have done it in the two days prior - but that's not my style, last minute motivation is the way I roll).  he was going to be a star, but they already had an absolutely adorable little star (seriously, she's DARN cute) and I didn't think it made sense to have two stars.  I asked the director if maybe he could be an animal, since we didn't have any animals (there was Mary & Joseph, three shepherds, three angels, three wise men, a star, and a narrator) ... she said "sure, he can be an ass".  LOL!!!  (good sense of humor, I love it)   so, an ass donkey he was! 

his outfit was simple.  I knew he had gray jeans and Jericho had a gray shirt, so I decided to make him a little hat!  it was cute -in theory anyway- but it was a little "short" and I didn't do the ears too well so they were floppy ... but hey, it worked and he was adorable!  and, I might add, he really did well ... especially considering he never went to either of the two practices!  he had two "naughty" moments - for him, that's pretty amazing!  one was when he crossed the stage (he was by Mary and Joseph) and walked right over to a microphone and make a sound ... that's my son, yep - right there!!!  he walked right back, though, so I was impressed!  that had been shortly after it started, and by ten minutes later -as it neared the end- he was in awe with fascination for the rotating Christmas tree.  he edged closer and closer to it and then took off one of the ornaments ... "Mary" was laughing and I tried to whisper to her to tell him to stop, I think "Joseph" got the ornament and put it back on the tree and the kids finished up their show without a hitch!

all ready to go

Friday, December 30, 2011

the last of 2011 ...

of course, if I find that I've somehow forgotten any I'll post them anyways (and back date them) but I'm trying to be officially "caught up" with 2011 between today and tomorrow!!!  so, here a few pics that hadn't made it onto the blog yet ...

 when I came across some of Liam's old toys I gave them to Zoey - 
she especially loves her star stacker that my friend gave me ... I think
this was Jericho's when he was a baby (and that was following my friend's twins)
so it's  long loved pass me down toy!!!

 so sweet!!!

 these are some photos of my set up at the bazaar I did
early this month ... I really liked it!!!

 here's some of Zoey modeling a tutu I made
(and her flower headband i made, too) ...
she wasn't in a modeling mood that day!

 this is what I found when I left Liam alone for ten minutes
one day a few weeks back ... aye aye aye!

 she loves the remote!

sound asleep during video game time - lol!!! 
not quite sure why the hubby insisted I cut Liam's hair - clearly it's not something I have any skill for! but, I got it out of his eyes and managed to survive the ordeal and it doesn't look as bad as it could!
they call this area "the bee bush" because in the warmer seasons
there are lots of bees in the bushes!
it's a favorite spot for mine and the neighbor kids ...
they all love to play together and this is their "spot"!
I wish I could share more pics - but they
all have close up of all the little friends!

 getting ready for a new year means making some big changes
around the house for us (this year) ... which also means
lots of cleaning and organizing!!!  the hubby's game room has
earned it's way into the house and the playroom is moving
out to the garage (yes, I'll have to buy a heater for our
colder months) ... my craft room will remain in the garage, but
perhaps it will finally become a craft room rather than
a giant mess ten million different items in piles and stacks!!!
and since I needed to open up more space for said
playing room - we've the bikes to the back patio!  I did a major
cleaning and threw out all the old, broken outside toys!
phew, that feels so much better!!!

the Christmas card photo shoot ...

 this one was from the pics with Nana and Grandaddy - 
I just love his face!!!

just wanted to share the pics I got the day I was shooting for our Christmas card!
initially, Liam was being a stinker and not cooperating - you'll see ...

 and then I tried to get some of just Zoey, but she wasn't really
in the photo taking mood ... she was much more interested in the leaves!!!

Monday, December 26, 2011

24 hours ago ...

these pics are from approximately 24 hours ago, Christmas morning!  the kids woke up a little before 7am, well - the boys did!  by the time we all got up and got going it was about 7:15 and by about 7:45 every single gift had been unwrapped, swooned over, and they were begging for them to be out of their packages to be enjoyed!  it was a flurry of paper and smiles!

(warning - photo heavy post here)

I liked these baby dolls so much that Zoey got two
of them (each a different expression on their face) -
those were her gifts from us!!!  she seemed to like
them and was doing the baby sign whenever we'd say
where's your baby!  and she snuggled them, so cute!

hat from Nana

a new diary of a wimpy kid book - she loved it

back in November Jericho wrote this:
"wish lis and brtday list ... I want stowrs. and Batman and here potr ______ and sundr cats"
I'm happy to say that he did, indeed, get a little something to
represent each request!!!  this was the big one, "stowrs" - aka: StarWars!!!

I found this for Liam and thought it would be a great bath toy
since he's always wanting to take cars in the bath!!!
(it's Mater and Lightning with a wash mit - they change color)

found lots of good looking books at the $1 book
store when I went to the mall with one of my besties
several weeks back!!!

awwww - love the baby

had to get some practical stuff for the big kids too - 
like shoes and socks!!!

she didn't get many toys - but I did give in and get her
squinkies, her only request!!!  
(daddy is not a fan of the squinkies)

Zoey made a bed for her baby!

anything Toy Story -and especially Buzz- is a hit!

I think in total, Liam got four new Maters - lol

and awesome lamp (I picked it out - ha ha) from
Nana and Grandaddy

got Jericho some boy squinkies ...
that was an add on request - lol

she loves her crafts - yarn is a fave - and turquoise is 
her fave color along with purple

I love that (above) set of pics!  this was the boys BIG gift, 
to share!  they loved it!  once it was open they played with
it for a good solid hour, at least!!!

I don't mind admitting I went cheap - I found a really
nice "Bella" ring for $12, but couldn't see getting it - we'll
see how well she keeps track/takes care of this one!!

when daddy brought down all the gifts from Nana and Grandaddy,
Jericho was beyond excited to find it was his name on the biggest
one of all ... and he couldn't wait to open it!  I kept telling him
he had to wait until some of the gifts in front of it were done,
finally it was time and he was thrilled!  an easel!!!

managed to get one with all four ... 
hey - i wasn't gonna make them look - they were having 
too good of a time!  see Liam marveling at his new movie from
his uncle???  and, yes, they had to watch it straight away!

Uncle (the hubby's brother) drew these awesome
comic book covers for the boys (and one for the hubs, too)
... I think that's a super special gift!  wanna frame them!

and there you have it, a bit of our Christmas morning (well, ok, a lot of it!)  hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas!!!