December 29, 2011

one thousand gifts

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. We sure did. 

I'm happy to be back & blogging. The hubs had some time off so we did a little shopping, relaxed a lot, and got rid of the dead tree. Phew. I love real Christmas trees but it had lived a nice life & needed to out of our cluttered living room. 

We also had some time to read. And it was nice the hubs got me a few new books to get going on. One being "One Thousand Gifts"

Very poetic & very encouraging. That is what I think about it so far. I've only read a few chapters & I'm really excited to get going further.  I'm not sure if you're very familiar with Ann Voskamp. I wasn't. I just knew I was recommended to read this book & found she is much more than just this book. She's got a blog, a website, & other books. Interesting. 

One thousand gifts is basically one thousand things to thank God for. Read it. I can't wait to finish it & understand it all a little more.

And we've been working on Ashlyn's room. I am very excited to put up a photo gallery wall. I have the frames/photos/etc just got to get it up. Until then I'll leave you with a glimpse of her room thus far, the reveal will up soon. Get excited! She is blessed to have a room fit for a princess. A handy daddy. And a mommy who loves to decorate. ;) 

Oh and thinking about "making a what I want to do in 2012" list and posting it. Always fun to imagine things to do in the coming year. 

Hope to be a blessing to others.

December 22, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Hey there. =)

It's been a really fun Holiday season. Having two kids now does have its challenges, but it also has its many blessings. I've been doing a whole lot more thinking than I ever have about Christmas & what comes with the territory and having kids. I think mainly it's because having two kids brings a lot more into the season than it ever was with just the two of us. Like for example, would we introduce Santa,  Christmas on a Sunday & all those crazy conversations that come from that, what about Advent, what will we do Christmas Eve as a family, how will we work out Christmas' with both sides of the family, yada yada yada. All in all, I am so blessed to teach Ashlyn, and one day Carter, the true meaning of Christmas. The real reason we even have a holiday. It's been neat seeing Ashlyn learn how to sing a few carols, know where to find Baby Jesus in our home, & see the light in her eyes as she opens a gift (she has only opened one so far and it was really cute). Funny how she is also at the age where we have to teach her to share, really getting deeper into the Christmas Season, teaching her to share seems quite appropriate don't you think. 

Our memories so far... Decorated our house outdoors for the first time. Can't wait till the kids are old enough to appreciate it. Made Christmas cookies with my mom, sister in law & her friend and even took them to Hobby Lobby. Their first time, I think they liked it.  Took the kiddos shopping more than I normally would have & survived. Had Josh's sister take our Christmas photos. Thanks Amanda! Went shopping as a family & even managed to get gifts for the hubs. Had a family dinner date at Red Robin. WE HAVE A RED ROBIN. YES! Had our tree fall for the first time, and no kids were involved. (and no one was hurt) Enjoyed watching Home Alone together (early Christmas gift from the hubbs), we laugh sooo hard at that one, love laughing with my man. Looking forward to the second one which we'll watch this week sometime. (I think I like that one better) Drank a yummy Peppermint Milkshake from Chic-fil-a (yes it had to be put here, my hubbie brought one home last night, it's noteworthy!)

(Doesn't that look delish?)

So ya, I'm really blessed to have an amazing little family (or large really). We made so many memories. I love that!  Looking forward to celebrating with the extended family the birth of our SAVIOUR this weekend & making more memories. Hope it doesn't just end there. I mean really, we should be reminding ourselves daily of the life Jesus lived and sacrifice he did for us. 
Thank you! 

I'll leave you with our Christmas Card. 
Sorry for the bad quality, it's a photo of a photo, the photos are actually crystal clear quality.
(photos by: AB PHOTOGRAPHY)

Merry Christmas!!

December 20, 2011

Some things I'm Pinterested in.

I wanted to showcase a few of my latest Pinterest finds, in no particular order. I hope you find them to be inspiring.

1. Now all my family is gonna make sure I have this for our Christmas gathering. No promises, but isn't it cute & looks fairly easy to put together. Oh ya, and yummy too!

2. Hmm....I have a sewing machine. Perhaps I should put it to some good use. Looks like this is on the not so easy scale, but perhaps I should try something outside my comfort level. Really cute though, huh?

3. I have a box for each kid with their newborn hat, bracelet, etc. I'll have to see if I can put something together like this. Don't worry I promise a blog entry if I do. 

4. How to personalize anything with your kids name. They explain it in dummy form. I promise. Now I just need something to personalize. Hmmm...

5. Blog post by Jared Wilson -"5 Ways Wives Can Encourage Their Husbands" Our husbands need us to be their biggest supporter. Go it.

Happy Pining,

December 19, 2011

a little diy bow hanger.

"Christmas is coming the goose is getting fat..."

Oh, hi!! I am excited can you tell?


If you're like me and have a little girl you have a bazillion bows as well. So why not create something where you can keep them, but also make it look cute at the same time. 

So...make a bow hanger.

I found the idea to make a bow hanger on etsy a few months ago & basically wiped it up the same day. The only thing that cost me money was the canvas because I already had the paints, ribbon, & hot glue gun. Basically you can take anything and make a bow hanger, art you already have or even a photo frame.

How to make a bow hanger? I took three pieces of ribbon & hot glued them to the back of the canvas. That's it. (and yes I painted the canvas)

Just a little project I wanted to share. If you have a two year old like me, you can hang this over the dresser, so the ribbon is out of the reach of those little hands.

This would make a great gift for your daughter, niece, grand daughter, friend, etc. Right?

Hope you're singing a tune because Christmas is only 6 days away. 

ps. I've decided I'm going to reveal our daughter Ashlyn's "Big Girl" room in January (maybe the first of the year) when we are finished with all the small stuff, some stuff comes on Christmas. I have a few more thing to add before I reveal it. Get excited!!!

Fun Stuff Fridays

December 15, 2011

Free Christmas Download.

Happy Thursday (It's almost Friday!),

I'm not one to really brag. Or maybe that's a lie, but it has to be something good. My brother Andy has been in his own band for the last 5 years maybe...or longer. I guess I should know, but I don't, opps.  But the band he's in now is going on tour more often than they ever have. Go Andy! Actually the name of his band is The Andy Needham Band. And there are 3 other guys who travel & play with him. GREAT TALENT! They sing Christian Contemporary Worship. Sorta a mix of David Crowder, Passion, Hillsong, Chris Tomlin style, but mostly Andy's own music, just to give you a quick idea of what I'm talking about when I say band. 

I like to give credit where it's due. The photo was done by: Michael David Photography 

Anyways, where I'm going with all this is that he has a FREE DOWNLOAD. Yay for free things, right? So go to this link and "LIKE" his page & then click on download. Easy enough?
 And now enjoy a little "Go tell it on the Mountain", Andy Needham style! 

That's my little infomercial for my bro. 
Ya, he's 19 months older than me, the oldest, just in case you're wondering where he 
stands in the family birth order.

Weren't we cute?

That's all for now. Hope to get a nice blog entry of our little girl's "BIG GIRL" room. It's basically completed & I want to showcase my hubbie & I's work. 

Don't forget to get the free download =)

Bye for now,

December 14, 2011

How I make my Quesadillas & Homemade Guac. YUM!


So in between all the craziness of this Christmas season I have come to a time when I can blog again. I guess I didn't factor in two kids, lots of Christmas and other parties, Church stuff, baking, shopping (wait, still need to do that!)), etc. with my blogging schedule. I have however jotted down some ideas for where I want my blog to go. Hopefully I will be able to keep up with it. Because I do love sharing stuff with you all! =)

So with that said I'd like to post a lovely post on how I make quesadillas & homemade guacamole, YUM! In our house guacamole is a staple, as in we eat it a LOT. More often I make it for lunch with what we eat. Our kids love it & it's good for the body so I feel we should have it often. That's a mom statement. A mom of a VERY picky two year old, although I'm very surprised of the things she will actually eat. Hoping Carter doesn't follow in her footsteps. Anyways, here is how I make those yummy things.

First I’m not sure how much you are familiar with making guacamole, but of course you need an avocado that’s ripe and ready for cutting into. It should be dark in color (outside) and soft. Inside it will be a nice yellow green. Scrape out the inside leaving the round middle to the side. (I’ve heard to save the middle & put it in your guacamole if there are any left, it helps preserve the color) Mash the avocado up like you would mash a banana. Then sprinkle about a 1/3 tsp of garlic & onion powder over it, and a dash of S/P. Then I used the lemon juice and put about a Tbsp in. I grabbed about two Tbsp of fresh Cilantro and broke it up with my hands and mixed it in. And last I cut up a tomato, making sure to clean out the seedy inside, and diced it into small pieces and mixed that into it. PERFECT!

To make the Quesadillas first I cut a boneless chicken breast into small pieces & cooked over medium heat on the stovetop. I put in about a tablespoon of olive oil too. 

Then I drained the water from the black beans & rinsed them. Also you can then prepare the shells, cheese, and whatever else you want inside the shells on the side so you can have them ready. I also had a plate with paper towel so that I could put the chicken in after they were cooked, and they would dry out & cool off a bit.

I warm up both sides in the pan on medium heat, with a tad bit of olive oil. Then start filling the shell. Be careful to put everything towards the center, since the cheese will melt and spread out. About a minute on both sides & WALA!

Use a pizza cutter to cut it up & serve with my homemade Guacamole & light sour cream. You can also mix some salsa, Jalapenos, or whatever hot sauce you prefer. For me, I like them not so hot.


How do you make your Quesadillas?? What do you like with them?

Merry CHRISTmas!

December 8, 2011

DIY Christmas Packaging Bow

 Want to see something I made today?

Isn't she a beauty? She makes my Mac computer even more pretty. 

Want to make one? 

I found the idea on Pinterest. (Of course) And it reminded me that I've always wanted to make this kind of a bow. So I made it. It probably took me 20 minutes to make. Not bad. 

 I can't believe it was made out of a Pottery Barn Catalog. I think I'm gonna try to decorate all the gifts I give this year with one & wrap with newspaper or other paper we have laying around. 

I made a large one.  but it can also be done with just 3 layers instead of 4. 

Check Here for the exact how to. Make one this Christmas. You may just surprise yourself. 

That's all for now,

December 6, 2011

a joy full home CHRISTMAS.

Today I wanted to share a few photos of our home this Christmas season. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas from our home to yours,

December 5, 2011

I'm good. I know I'm bad, at grammar.

Hi there,

I've been thinking a lot about how I write my blog post. My husband reminded me I have many grammar issues in them. I'm not offended in any way. I KNOW I'm not very good at grammar. It's a wonder I love journalling and have been since I was little. I always felt if someone read my journal entries (my paper journal, that is) they may not understand what I wrote. Ha, sometimes I can't even understand my own writing. In school I was much more interested in Science & Math. Ya, I'm one of those gals. I loved figuring things out. I was also more of an art/music girl. I didn't take my first "real" art class till I was in highschool. I had no idea that I was a little artsy until then. I knew I didn't mind art class, and had fun, but I had no idea I was "artsy". I guess I inherited my dad's art skills. Thanks Dad! I like to paint, but I am not one to just create something from nothing. If I have a picture to look at and copy I'm all set. Otherwise, ha, good luck! So there's my two cents on that.

Can you find all the grammar problems in that paragraph^? I bet there's a ton. (wink*)

So now that we have that behind us, I'd like to share a diy idea from Thrifty Decor Chick. Now that we are in the Christmas season we all are thinking of ways to decorate our table. Either for everyday living or a party we are putting on. I know for me I can never figure out what to do with our table. I think having kids it changes the way I decorate. One day I'll get back my freedom to decorate how I want to. But until then I'll just talk about what I'd like to do. So for all you who have a large table, and need a non expensive way to decorate, this is for you.

She literally spray painted a bunch of cut up paper rolls, for napkin rings. You could do gold, silver, copper, whatever colors you have already or what looks better in your house. At $5 a color, that's NOT bad.
 LOVE this idea! 


And then she spray painted some candle stick holders. (she primed them all first)

Ok, that is just magical! And we can all get some pretty ornaments after Christmas or hit the local Walmart/DollarStore/Hobby Lobby for cheap. I love projects that anyone can do. Seriously!? Now go to the Thrify Decor Chick blog and check out her post on how she made them. She does a way better job explaining how to make them. 

Happy DIYing this Christmas!

December 4, 2011

Thriving Family Freebee

Hello again,

 I really need to stay on the topic of Advent for this post. Just after I wrote the last one I went through a pile of mail and we had gotten our newest issue of Thriving Family Magazine (Focus on the Family). 
On the cover it mentioned having an Advent Insert. 
 As I looked more into this new issue I also realized that they now have an iphone/ipad, or any smartphone really, app for Thriving Family. NEAT! You can download the latest magazine issue & the Advent insert as well. (Or click here to find the advent insert from the website) 
So that’s a fun free thing you can look at today & read until Christmas. Each day has a craft or thing to do as a family as well. Gatta love it! I hope to keep sharing free things as I find them. It’s always nice to not have to “pay” for everything. 
And yesterday we decided it was time to get our Christmas Tree; little did we know how expensive it is to get a real tree. Really 50-60 bucks?? I'm pretty sure we cut one down for that price a few years back, and we lived in a pretty pricey area. So we decided to check out Lowes where we picked out a beautiful Fraser Fir for almost half that. Phew! 

 Carter even got a ride with the tree...ha!

 There she is! And let me tell you she smells sooo good!
 Ashlyn setting up the Nativity.
 See. =)
Trying my hand at some photos of Carter. 


Let's remember the reason for the season. It's neat to be able to share it with Ashlyn now that she is a bit older. She's only rearranged the Nativity scene like five times already. Gatta love it. =)

Do you get a real tree, fake, cut your own? How much did you pay this year? Just curious.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend,