Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

What a beautiful Christmas Eve! We went to the candlelight service with my parents. 
 Kal was being completely crazy so Tyler had to leave early but Keeler did great. This is a tradition that means the most. 
Then we headed over to Tyler's parent's Christmas. We had a blast!! I loved watching the kids open their gifts and being around family. We are so blessed. Wishing everyone a very merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas Cards

This morning I am linking up with Kelly’s Korner:  Show Us Your Christmas Cards 
I love sending and receiving Christmas cards.  This year we didn't do a family picture on our card and opted to just focus on the little cowboys…by far the cutest members of our family. :) 
Design c/o Shutterfly.com
I also added a couple of my favorite cards we have sent in the past.  
My how fast time flies!
Design c/o Snapfish.com
Design c/o Snapfish.com
  Merry Christmas from our home to yours!


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Random Thursday

Only 5 days until Christmas!  Are you ready?!  I’m almost there.  Yesterday I went and picked up all our stocking stuffers.  Since we live in a rural community are options are slim on shopping but I was so excited to discover toys: buy one get one 50% off.  This was nice for the little toys I needed for stockings.  Tyler and I finished wrapping presents last night.  We only have one gift to buy once we get to Amarillo and then we are DONE!  This year things have come together pretty well. I am so excited about several of the presents we are giving.
Today is Keeler’s Christmas party at school and then he is off for a few weeks.  My vacation starts on Friday afternoon and then I’m off until after the first of the year.  I know the time will fly but I’m looking forward to time with family and especially to making holiday memories with my little cowboys. 
A little random but I feel like I need to document it to make it real and to help keep my goal so here goes (drum roll please)... I have committed to a half marathon in May.  Recently, I have joined a small running group here in town.  It’s four other ladies and myself.  All of the girls are more “experienced” runners than myself but they are so supportive.  We all run at a similar pace and have gone on a few runs together, including a six mile long distance last weekend.  I never dreamed that I would be able to set such a lofty goal but I’m really excited.  I started a training plan this week.  It’s primarily 3 miles daily which I have been able to squeeze in on the treadmill before work and even before my little cowboys are awake.  I am keeping my fingers crossed the Christmas break doesn't interfere too much with my training plan.  Sorry mom but I'll be sneaking out the door between baking and opening presents to get a few miles in. :)    
I realized that I failed to post our recent family pictures.  

 About a month ago we tried to have a fun picture taking day.  We had great intentions.  My sister’s family, my parents, my in-laws and sister-in-laws family all met at my sister’s new house to embrace the camera!  The day was hectic.  The kids were not cooperative, some of the men were complaining, we were tired…the list goes on and on.  All you really need to know is the day did not goes as planned but for those that were there, we all know it will go down in history as the worst.picture.day.ever.  And for that reason, I really didn't want anything to do with the pictures after that day.  I edited a few and then forgot about them until my recent print order came in the mail.  And surprising I was really impressed with how well they turned out.  Many of them really melted my heart.  
Let me know what you think!  

No matter how uncooperative ours kids and hubbys are...we always love them.  We are so blessed.  That's why it's so important that we do embrace the camera occasionally.  To document.  I think these pictures mean more to me after last week.  Overwhelming feelings of sadness still fill my heart for something so senseless. My heart goes out to those in ConnecticutI truly feel privileged to have my two little cowboys, to be their mommy and to have a loving husband by my side.  

I’m going to borrow this from Casey, as it really spoke to me today. 
"When you decide to live out what you believe. When you decide you want peace in your possession, then you will find out what that looks like & feels like. You begin to pray for God to give you peace. You incorporate peace in your relationships. You decide to respond differently. You speak in love. Act in tenderness. You imitate what you know about peace until it becomes a reality for your character & your life."
"He restores what has been broken & heals what has been wounded. I don't have peace because I figured it all out. I have peace because I believe in Christ." excerpt from “A Beautiful Offering" 

Friday, December 14, 2012

2012 Christmas Tour of Homes

Today I'm linking up Kelly’s Korner Show Us Your Life:  2012 Christmas Tour of Homes AND
The Mrs. & the Momma's:  All Things Holiday Link Up Party

Welcome to our home!
By far the most festive part of our home is the living room.  
I still think I need a taller tree.  I have one picked out at Hobby Lobby.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I can get a great deal after Christmas.  :)
I bought our cowboy tree-topper at a Christmas specialty stores years ago...half off of course!
 I bought this little stocking garland at World Market.  It's been a fun addition to our Christmas countdowns.  Everyday I give the little cowboys a treat from the stocking.  Most days its a small candy or trinket but I have placed a few Christmas activity cards in the stockings.  We've made frosted Christmas trees, watched a Christmas movie, etc.  I found a lot of great ideas off this pin.
My favorite item is always our nativity set.  This cowboy nativity is in the dining room - out of baby's reach.  I found it at Steinmart years ago.  The little cowboys really get a kick out of it!
The nativity set below came from Mardel.  I got it when Keeler was a baby.  We keep it down low and the little cowboys love to play with it.  Kallahan typically has is all over the place.  The little angel on the top lights up and sings Away in the Manger.  Just the sweetest!
I keep our dining table set with my Christmas dishes all month long.  I just LOVE my dishes and seriously smile every time I walk by.  Wouldn't you?!  My mom gave them to me as a Christmas gift a couple years ago.  She got them at Kohls.  
Best. Gift. Ever!
This year I took an idea off Pinterest for our Christmas card display.  I ran ribbon down the front of our kitchen cabinet doors and  attached the cards with clothespins. It's working great but I am going to have to start another cabinet.  This is a great problem to have - I love receiving Christmas cards!!
I found my new garland (above entertainment center prior picture) and this wreath at out local holiday bazaar.  I've always loved berry decor.  
 I have two of these vases on my mantel.  They've been around for years - I would never eat the candies, ha!  But they always look so cute.  
I didn't get around to taking pictures of everything in the house.  I had to get to work...boo.  But both the little cowboys have trees in their bedrooms, we have one in the basement and like above - I have little Christmas items throughout the house.  
I hope you have enjoyed our tour.  Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas.  


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Christmas Program and Pajama Party

We've had a fun and busy week.  
On Wednesday night Keeler was in our church Christmas program.  
 He sang Twinkle Twinkle Christmas Star with the other preschoolers.  These little ones are also in my preschool Sunday school class so it was very special to watch. :) 
Yesterday Keeler had a pajama party at preschool.  
*Fake smiles like his mommy!*
He looked so comfy with his cowboy pajamas, house slippers, blanket and pillow.  He said they watched a Santa movie and ate popcorn.  He thought it was so funny that a couple of his classmates feel asleep.  I bet their teacher didn't mind, ha!
I’m really looking forward to the weekend but we still have a lot going on.  We have my company Christmas party on Saturday evening.  Since I am the coordinator it's not as much fun and still some work.  Tyler's uncle and aunt are going to watch the little cowboys.  It will go well because they are great with them! :)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Weekend Visitors

My parents came up this past weekend to visit and brought my sister’s youngest, Samuel.  We had a great weekend…noisy but great!  Saturday morning Keeler and Samuel went with my dad (aka Pa Diddy) to eat breakfast and then headed out to the farm.  Is sounds like the little boys had a great time and even got to ride horses!  My mom and I kept it low-key.  We took our time getting ready, watched RHOM and then headed out shopping.  Our shopping was nothing too exciting but we had fun and then stopped into Subway for a quick lunch.  When the cowboys got back into town, Tyler and my dad went and picked up firewood.  The cold has settled in southwest Kansas so it’s finally feeling like December.  The guys kept the fireplace going all weekend,  which I love!  
I also love that my parents make such a great effort at visiting us when we can't make it their way.  It's so important to me that my little cowboys have a great relationship with their grandparents.  I cherish the time I got to spend with my grandmother SO MUCH and I want that for our boys.  This time of year really pulls at my heart...I miss my grandmother.  Growing up I only had one living grandparent and she was amazing.  We had such a special bond.  It will be 3 years since she passed this Christmastime.
This is picture is from the last Christmas we got to celebrate with her.  She's the one in the red sweater and her sister is holding baby Keeler.  
Embrace the Camera
I am so glad that Grandmother got to meet Keeler.  She loved all the kids so much.  She was interested in every detail of everyone's life up until they very end of her life.  Kallahan didn't get the chance to meet her but I will make sure he knows all about her.  This weekend he spent a lot a time crawling up into Pa Diddy's lap and loving on him.  He's just the cutest!
On Saturday evening we made frosted Christmas trees with the big boys.  I was so impressed at how well they did and by the lack of mess!  Samuel really concentrated on making sure his was completely frosted.  Kallahan thought they were pretty tasty too! :)
My mom showed up with a great surprise gift...a Christmas train!  After mommy finally figured out how to put it together the boys had a blast.  Keeler's sharing and taking turns skills were tested but they ended up doing okay.  The boys played well all weekend.    
To top things off, we got to see um, Santa Clause.  However this counterfeit didn't even fool our 4-year-olds.  It was still fun and we explained he was a helper and could report to Santa.  Keeler and Samuel weren't too impressed but I found it very funny.  Look at him!!  #sloppysanta
 We hated to see my parents leave but only a couple weeks and then we will be back together to celebrate Christmas!!

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
Romans 12:12

Monday, December 3, 2012

Weekend Whoas

My baby finally uttered those sweets words that I have been dying to hear since he first said “da-da” several months ago.  Why was it so hard baby Kal? 
Now that he finally said it, it seems to be his favorite. :)  
No words.  
It's so frustrating trying to get a picture of the two of these silly cowboys.  But I know someday I'll appreciate these pictures even more than the well posed ones.  Wait, well posed pictures?  I yet to have any, ha!  Maybe when they're graduating high school they will be more cooperative ..yeah right!  But we'll keep 'em.  
We ended up having a nice weekend.  Friday night Tyler and I stayed up until midnight wrapping presents.  I know, Friday nights are really exciting nowadays!  On Saturday Keeler went to the farm with Tyler while Kal and I cleaned the house from top to bottom.  I guess I wore him out because he took a four hour nap.  He NEVER does that!  In the evening we watched part of a Christmas movie.
On Sunday, I taught Keeler's Sunday school class.  Then we enjoyed the Hanging of the Greens Service.  It is one of my favorite Sundays all year.  Keeler was so cute helping put ornaments on the tree and hanging bows on the alters.  He was so eager to help and loved it!  I was so proud of him.  We are so blessed to have great church family.  After church  Tyler grilled out for lunch and then I was able to go for a nice run while the little cowboys napped.  I still can't get over our weather...70 degrees in December!  In the evening we went looking at Christmas lights.  How many more ways can I say it?  I love this time of year!     

Friday, November 30, 2012

Christmas Light Parade

Last night was our town’s annual Christmas Light Parade.  It’s always a bittersweet week for me.  At work we work our tails off all week to get everything together.  This year I only ended up staying one late night but a few of our employees really put in some hours…but was it worth it?  Heck yes!!  This year our awesome float took first place!  
I am so proud of our parade committee.  One of the committee guys, Adam (aka: Clark Griswold), has to be one of the most Christmas light proficient / perfectionist out there.  Up until the last minute he is ensuring that every light is in place and working properly.  His ideas are amazing and so is his dedication.  We are so lucky to have him!
Granny dropped Keeler off at work with me on Wednesday night while we worked on the float.  We all ate pizza together and then got busy working.  Keeler and Adam’s son rode toys around the shop.  On the way home he mentioned what a fun time he had.  I am so fortunate that I can include him and that he enjoys it…how long will this last? 

Last night the little cowboys and Granny also came and rode on the float with us down the parade procession.  Kallahan got to sit next to Santa! 
Keeler rode on the back on a kid’s tractor.  He was behind Brittany as she sang Christmas music.  Have I ever mentioned that Keeler think Brittney is pretty special? ;) He was on cloud nine!  
I walked beside the float and handed out candy.  I love to watch the children on the street light up while watching the lights and Santa.  It's such a magical night.  I feel like I'm living in a Hallmark movie for a few minutes, ha!  Keeler saw several of his friends from school and even spotted his teacher.  He was so excited.  The only downfall was he said it went by too quickly. 
After the parade we went home.  Daddy picked up dinner, Granny stayed to eat and we had a great family night.  I just love the holidays.  This weekend we actually don’t have anything planned.  I am overly excited about that! The Family Channel’s 25 Day of Christmas starts so I foresee a lot of lounging in our pajamas ‘til noon, sipping on hot chocolate and present wrapping in our future.