December 29, 2008

movies..movies..movies...

we are a family of movie lovers.  i think we got about 10 dvds for christmas.  a little pathetic really.  some of the most memorable moments in my life are about movies...i saw bambi the night that my niece haley was born.  i saw malcolm x with my brother jeff and it brought on a conversation with him that is very important to my way of thinking about things.  dave and i saw groundhog day on our honeymoon and he chased me around the theater saying something goofy about feet.  we went to see one of the harry potters in the big theater in san antonio where they show the alamo movie.  hot summer afternoons we often escape to the cool dark movie theater to cool down after working outside.  plus it's the only date that i can get dave to agree to.  sometimes i'll see anything just to get out of the house for a few hours.;)  
so i thought i would share my thoughts on a few of the movies i've seen  this past few weeks.  we watched traitor again last night on dvd with don cheadle....i love this movie.  it is a total thinker and it's a little scary but i think he is awesome and i love that it makes me think.  i took dave to australia which i really liked and he sorta liked.  it was a great story, kind of gone with the windish and that little boy is just amazing.  if i could somehow prearrange a marriage with him for maya it would happen.  seriously.  we saw 4 christmases which is a perfect mindless movie that is totally predictable and those two have no chemistry, but it was cute...definately a rental.  yes man was a typical jim carrey movie but we laughed hard.  yesterday we went and saw the curious case of benjamin button.  it is a very long movie.  be warned...we didn't go in with that knowledge.  we liked it though.  it's a great story and they did a really good job, i thought, with the makeup on brad pitt.  cate blanchett is lovely.  the thing i love the most is it is completely original.  sometimes it seems like every  movie is the same.  they have done a good job this year of mixing it up a little with movies.  yay hollywood!
i have been on a complete brad pitt strike for the last few years but this movie reminds me why i loved brad pitt.  not only is he dreamy in a young robert redford kind of way but he really is a great actor when he has  the right role to play.  he did an excellent job in this movie.

 so there you go...there are my movie reviews for the holiday season.  i still need to see 7 pounds and marley and me so let me know how they were if you saw them and happy movie going! 

~saw marley and me and LOVED it!  if you love your pets, especially your chocolate lab named drake that's getting old and gray and deaf, then you better take some tissue...why didn't anyone tell me this?!  anyhoo, i love jennifer aniston and owen wilson both and i loved this movie!!!  sorry pulsipher but jen is the definite winner of the angelina vs. jen war.

it's over...sigh...

we have this tradition that on christmas eve mady gets her birthday dinner because her birthday is on christmas...yup that's right.  christmas.  i know.  so this year dave had the brilliant idea to have a dinner of appetizers.  we had stuffed mushrooms, hooters buffalo wings (i made them...we didn't take the little ones to hooters, don't worry.)  baby quiches, artichoke dip, veggie tray...yadayadayada. 
the big finale was a chocolate fountain...yummy! 
 after that we did our other tradition, the unwrapping of the christmas pj's.  i actually made pants for the little ones this year.  once upon a time a very very long time ago i used to make clothing for mady.  lots of clothing.  then she got older and that wasn't really that cool so i quit. then i found out that it's really a lot of fun to just buy clothes.  now it's all hip to make clothes for little girls so i figured i don't want the two little ones to not be hip and so i made them jammies. ha.  i think i'll sew a little more for them because i actually enjoyed it!  so here's a pic of my girls...notice mad hatters are from target...i still don't sew for her.  she wants me to make her a prom dress...eeeekkk!
christmas morning was magical just like it is every year you have little ones.  is there really many things better than little kids on christmas morning?  it doesn't matter if they get one thing or fifty they are just happy that the big guy came and brought them a surprise.  i love em! mady even said this year that she was more excited to see them then for herself...she's growing up...sigh.  

so i hope that your christmas was as great as mine!

it's a wonderful life...

i am surrounded during christmas time by decorations.  my decorations are special though.  as i looked at all of them this year almost every single one is attached to someone i love or a cherished memory.  i have the one that was the first christmas gift i bought to give out our first married christmas...a little porcelain polar bear sitting on a bell.  i remember buying them for my sisters and brothers and being so excited and feeling all grown up.  there's the little church that i bought in carmel, cali when we went with my sis and bil for my brother's wedding.  my sisters have made me many and they always make me feel loved.  i have beautiful santas that my mom has given me for my collection.  there are neighbor gifts and gifts from when i was in young womens.  i have cute things that my little niece haley has given me and that my awesome bil and sil have made for us.  the best thing about all of these things is that each year i take them out i also take out memories and feelings of love that have been stored all year and are welcomed just like old friends.

thank you!

hello blog friends!  before i do anything else i just want to say a big thank you to my customers.  i don't know if any of you visit the blog but if you do, thank you.  what an awesome christmas season we had with our little business.  i got to ship my pictures to places all over the country and even had my first canadian customer...we shipped to such far off places as north pole, alaska...annapolis, maryland....elbow lake, minnesota...wellington, utah...herkimer, new york... kinston, north carolina.  it's been so much fun talking to people with southern accents, emailing back and forth with sweet ladies from beaver dam, wisconsin, and meeting my blog bff, kristina, for breakfast to exchange pictures. thanks again pulsipher, it was fun.  it was fun to get orders for this picture from husbands to give to their wives....what sweethearts!  it was also great to get orders for this picture  for sons and sweethearts who love the duke,  the women who ordered those were the best, just full of love for those men in their lives.  i have to tell you this story because it brought a tear even to big d....this little lady from a small town in south carolina ordered the john wayne picture to hang in her house.  her husband said that was the way he was going to live his life and when he died of cancer last october they buried a little coaster that had it written on it with him.  she was going to get our picture to hang up so her kids could remember their dad that way.  i know!  my other favorite story was about
 this picture, a lady ordered it for her husband for christmas because it was something he says to his boys all the time.  she was so excited to find something with that quote on it....i love quotes they just stick with ya and teach good things.
anyhoo...thank you, thank you, thank you.  you have all been so great to work with and have kept me busy, busy, busy.  plus you paid for an awesome christmas for my family!;)  i can't wait to work with all of you again.  Happy New Year!

December 12, 2008

merry christmas and thank you...


The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight. 
My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.
Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.


The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve. 
My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.


The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear. 
Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know, Then the
sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.
My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.


Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight. 
A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.
Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.


"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here! 
Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"
For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts..


To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right, 
I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night."
"It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.


No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me. 
My Gramps died at ' Pearl on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."
My dad stood his watch in the jungles of ' Nam ',
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.


I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile. 
Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
The red, white, and blue... an American flag.
I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.


I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat. 
I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..
Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."


" So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."
"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?
It seems all too little for all that you've done, 
For being away from your wife and your son."


Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget. 
To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust, 
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."

 Christmas will be coming soon and some credit is due to our
U.S service men and women for our being able to celebrate these
festivities. Let's try in this small way to pay a tiny bit of what we owe. Make people 
stop and think of our heroes, living and dead, who sacrificed themselves for us. 

LCDR Jeff Giles, SC, USN
30th Naval Construction Regiment
OIC, Logistics Cell One
Al Taqqadum, Iraq

~i have had 3 brothers and 1 nephew that have gone to fight the war in iraq...last christmas we had a loved one spending his christmas away from his wife and sons.  let's all just take a moment and remember all of those brave soldiers who have been willing to sacrifice for not only us but to make our world a little bit better place to live for all.  send em some good juju.


December 7, 2008

tink, tink, tink...are you out there?  do i have any bloggin bff's left that actually come here and visit?  sorry i have been absent for so long.  life is very hectic right now and i have no time to play.:(  luckily it's because i'm fillin orders!!!  YAY!  they will be filled soon and i'll be back.

we are the champions, my friends


once again the mighty VIKING cheerleaders have taken first place!
can you say WINNERS!!
way to go little cheerleaders...you rock.
these girls seriously work harder than the NFL.
they practice three times a day.  
they practice 11 months out of the year.
they are all injured and do it through the pain.
they just rock.
i am proud of every single one of them.

deck the halls...

i have a confession to make. last year i was so busy with dickens festival and getting orders out that i. did. not. decorate. for. christmas. not one decoration on the tree, we were lucky to even have one. it was a sad, sad, christmas at our house. when we decided we weren't going to do dickens this year i made up my mind right there and then that the day after thanksgiving my house was getting decorated come hell or high water. there will be no more years of undecorating at this house dammit. so we decked the halls...it was fabulous. it looks and smells like christmas. ahhh. so i'm going to bore you with pictures. sorry but i think it's the bloggin thing to do.
the skinny little tree in the crock...
it's a must have for all prim lovers i think. 
 at least it says so in all the prim magazines.
i know this is a funky picture but isn't it cool how the lights all reflect on the tin?  ooo ahhh
i even decorated the windowsill above
 the sink...all out this year,
 i have to make up for last year,  you know.
the water on the windows?  the price 
of old windows my friends.
i wish that pictures could really do a
 tree justice because this is a beauty. 
i've said that approximately 100 times
to dave.  he might be sick of hearing it
so i'll just say it to you.
i love this black shelf.  it has become the place
for the holiday festivities and it's nice to
have a place for all of those.

thanks for touring our holiday home...you are welcome back any time.


christmas tree hunting in the wild outdoors...

dave's family has this great tradition of going into the woods and cutting down our own christmas tree.  we haven't gone since maya was a babe but we thought it was time to start going again.  so here are a few little pictures from our adventure.

aunt lori is sooo patient and loves the kids...
they love her too, can you see why? 
 she did this for an hour with them going one mile an hour.
 i guess that means they rode for a mile, huh? i crack myself up.;)  
our mighty beautiful christmas tree. 
funny thing is the only part of that tree
 actually in my house is the part 
above our heads...short ceilings suck.
is there anything sexier than a guy 
who loves 
his kids and isn't afraid to show it?
i think not.





so all in all a pretty good day. the weather was beautiful, the kids had a ball and we got to spend the day together as a family in the mountains. darn near perfect.
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