Sunday, December 28, 2008

Remember That Rule?

The disobedience is running rampant. :::sigh:::

Friday, December 26, 2008

Setting Up

Joshua graciously offered to assist in setting up Steve's new television. First decision: To read the directions or to just wing it.

Nah. Real men don't read directions until a last resort.

Discussing whether opting to not read the directions was really a good idea.

Evidently, no directions worked for these guys. Steve's reaction the instant "It Worked!" He was quite tickled.

First movie watched: "The Patriot." Yes, we ARE the ultimate nerd family. :::snort:::

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to All! We had a great Christmas in our new house. We hosted Christmas Eve this year, as my sister-in-law has been waiting with baited breath to "turn Christmas Eve over" to Someone Else.

Steve, Ginger, Joshua, Brooke, Joshua's girlfriend Isabelle, and Morgan in their Christmas PJs on Christmas morning. (No, Isabelle didn't spend the night here - Joshua went and picked her up after she finished opening gifts at her house - wearing the PJs she opened at our house the night before was a requirement.)

We went to church on Christmas Eve, then back to our house for lasagna, spaghetti, garlic bread, salad, and Italian Hazelnut Creme Cassata for dessert. I changed the cake recipe just a wee bit - I omitted the raspberry jam (for Steve, who hates raspberries) and hazelnuts on top (for my mother-in-law, who can't eat nuts). Even with the omissions, the dessert was delicious! Unfortunately (or, per usual) I didn't get any pictures of Christmas Eve.

For a slight twist this year, and totally unplanned by me, Steve did most of the gift choosing and buying. And the girls did most of the wrapping. I wrapped perhaps four gifts, total. I liked this! I hate to shop. And wrap!

Steve is always the hardest one for me to buy for. He never gives hints as to what he wants. Or either he mentions things that I couldn't possibly buy - like a Cessna or a small tropical island. And NO MATTER WHAT, he always guesses his presents. Like the time I bought him shoes and wrapped them in a computer box with two cinder blocks. Yes, he guessed it was shoes. No, he doesn't peek. But he just always seems to KNOW.

But this year, I was able to get him something he had asked for - a big TV. We have an old "fat" TV. Steve had the entertainment center in our new house, though, built for his Future TV - a 50" flat screen plasma TV. I was shocked when I looked at the sticker price on these monstrosities and knew there was no way I would be able to get him one. But, thanks to a good sale and 18 months interest free financing (and a new job), I finagled a way to buy his biggest ever wish.

However, it would spoil the surprise to simply wrap it and put it under the tree. And he would be suspicious if he didn't have anything to open. So, while picking up some driving gloves at Bass Pro Shop that he mentioned wanting, I got an idea. "What is the smallest amount you can put on a gift card?" I asked the clerk. She didn't know and thought that was the strangest question. I explained what I had in mind and she got with the game. "Let's try $0.05," she said! And it went through! I write on the gift card "$200" and wrap it up. I also told Morgan if her dad opened it and said, "Oh, how nice!" we'd know he was completely disappointed (which was what I was hoping).

Christmas morning, he opened his gifts from the kids. Then his gloves. Then the gift card. "Oh, how nice," he said. "I can buy lots of stuff with this." (He is very gracious, even when thoroughly disappointed.) Morgan is holding her side and trying to stop the laughter that is bubbling inside. "Hey. Did you open your red box?" I ask Steve. No, of course he didn't. The kids got right into the game, lifting up their empty boxes and searching through the wrappings. "Brooke, you didn't leave it in the guest room, did you?" She admitted she probably had, so Steve and all his entourage trek to the guest room. "It'll be on the shelf," I say. He gets to the guest room, opens the closet, looks up on the shelf, then looks down....

Do you see the look on this man's face? Do I need to tell you that when he ripped off the paper (he knew what was in it by the size of the box) that he assuredly did NOT say, "Oh, how nice?" And, to my great delight, he never found out, so it was TRULY a surprise!

Steve has worked so hard the past two years and has given so much. The best gift *I* received was watching my wonderful, darling husband receive his Christmas Wish.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Transcriptionists in the Office.....

...never have to deal with THIS!
Can you see what the little rascal is doing?

She has sought me out so she can suck on my fingers! While I'm typing!

Silly kitty!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

So BIG!!!

Remember this wee little flea-bitten, wormy thing that arrived in June?

She's grown a little.

And she LOVES to give kisses! It's the sweetest thing!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tina? Is It You?

When Delilah and Abrial need a grooming, we say they look like Tina Turner. The topknot just gets bigger and bigger and bigger.

See the resemblance?

Cosette, however, is never called Tina Turner. Her topknot doesn't get bigger and bigger - it gets flatter and flatter. Anyway, the above photo is a clean and dry, yet ungroomed Delilah. Quite the poof, wouldn't you say?

Still with the poof, but now with a clean muzzle. Where are those scissors, anyway?

Oh, much better! Nicely groomed. We can see she does have eyes! Ta da! And a new Christmas "collar" guarding the Christmas tree. There's my Delilah! See, it's not Tina after all!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Decorating Help

Steve and the girls went out Friday and found the perfect tree. He strung the lights on it and now it's my turn. Only I'm missing some of my ornaments and don't now if I'll have enought - we've never had a tree this tall before - or one that needed more than 1/3 of it decorated because the only spot we had in the old house was in a corner with entertainment center and sofa around it. Just the front third needed decorating! Now I'm discovering I don't have nearly as many ornaments as I thought I did! And then there is that missing box.....

Kallie decided to help Steve with the garland. Actually, she was crouching down, thinking she was hidden. We got quite tickled at her.

Libby decided to squash the wreath. Good thing we weren't using that wreath this year!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Poor Snow Guy

He is melting just like Frosty in the hothouse. To add insult to injury, Joshua accidentally bumped him with his car, causing his skinny little head to fall off. But it's all good - Joshua stuck it back on.

Looks like Snow Guy is going to be a puddle just like Frosty. Where is that Santa when you need him to put a Snow Guy back together?

(But can you believe that Snow Guy lasted until Saturday? And it snowed Thursday? Wow! A definite Louisiana record!)

Friday, December 12, 2008

December Hostess Club

Something happened that has NEVER happened before - at least to my memory. We awakened to a bright, clear morning and the ground was covered with SNOW! I cannot believe it lasted more than 24 hours!

Everything was so bright white and beautiful! Okay, not my yard because I have no grass - it was just a brown mud hole. :::sigh:::

But the back was beautiful! Okay, this is not in my yard either. My yard was a brown mud hole all the way around the house. I just looked past all the mud, though.

So absolutely gorgeous! And by the time night rolled around for Hostess Club, it all still hadn't melted, especially back here.
I neglected to post November's layout, so I'll include it. I actually didn't even take a picture of it until tonight. The colors of both layouts came out very dull looking - I apologize for my photos' quality. It was late and I didn't care.

Page recipe: Stamps: Letterpress and Rough Edges Alphabets. Inks: Chocolate Chip and Almost Artichoke. Paper: Almost Artichoke, Naturals Vanilla, retired designer series paper, Kraft. Accessories: Vintage Brads.

Page Recipe: Stamps: None. Inks: None. Paper: Ski Slope Designer Series Paper, Chocolate Chip, Whisper White. Accessories: Season of Cheer Rub-ons. (That's what is decorating my title - in the picture, it just looks like little blobs on my white letters.)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Walkin' in a Winter Wonderland!

My cell phone, as well as Steve's, started ringing right at 6 a.m. this morning. "Wake up!" yelled Joshua, "it's SNOWING!!!" Okay, it had been raining for four days and, although snow was forecast, I said last night that "I'd believe it when I saw it." So I had to walk outside and THIS is what I saw.....

Okay, I'm a believer! My father-in-law said it was coming down when he woke up at 4:30 this morning. A steady snowfall with very LARGE wet flakes kept up most of the morning. Very surreal for a Louisiana gal whose biggest amount of snow seen in her home state was not even two inches!

My little mailbox, all covered in snow.

Morgan rarely gets up at this hour. Only something like snow would have her up by 6 a.m.!

Everything was SO beautiful!!! It was truly like a winter wonderland! Although I wouldn't want this every day, all through the winter. It was definitely a nice treat, though!

My handsome hubby looks even more handsome when covered in snow! HE couldn't even believe how hard it was coming down!

My puppers have never seen snow. Abrial and Cosette were not sure of that white stuff, but Delilah loved it!

She would jump at it and bite it and then run back to Abrial and Cosette to try to get them to play with her.

Eventually they did. The kids, however, didn't need any encouragement to play in the snow. They went through quite a number of outfits after they became soaked to the skin.

My poor southern children were reduced to digging in their pajama drawers and layering as best they could. This will explain Brooke's unusual outfit. Look! A REAL snowball fight! In Louisiana! With real snowballs! Amazing!!!

Of course, with all this snow, us deprived Louisianians were able to make a snowman that stood taller than 18".

Whoops! By this time, the snow had changed to sleet! And our electricity had gone out at about 7 a.m. - trees that were weakened by the two hurricanes earlier this year started losing branches left and right. The entire top of one of the large trees behind our house fell. It sounded like a gunshot when it broke!

My girls and the neighbor children with their biggest snow guy yet! They were all cold and wet and decided the fire and some hot cocoa were in order. I agree!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

No Cats on the Counter

That's the House Rule. And they always obey.

Well, sometimes.

A Job for Stewart

Morgan was babysitting for Baby R. today. But you know that she is only 12, not yet official babysitting age...

So I, Stewart, took it upon myself to supervise and make sure things went okay. Have you checked her diaper, Morgan?

Let's tuck that blanket in a little more securely. We may live in Louisiana, but it is COLD today!

Can she breath okay? Is her head covered? What does her hat say? appropriate for the day!

Yup. I, Stewart, carefully supervised and was pleased to report to Baby R.'s mom that Morgan did an excellent job caring for her. With a little assistance, of course.

Monday, December 8, 2008

What's That Bug?

Blog Contest!!! If you can identify these moths, I will send you......hmm......okay, the winner gets something that has NOTHING to do with moths - a copy of "Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry." Why? Because I have three of them, that's why.

And because I've looked at approximately 4,723 pages on the "What's that Bug" website and STILL can't find them. They were about 1 1/2 inches from stem to stern. And I'm curious, that's why.

Aren't they cute? They look like they are wearing little black and red furry scarves!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

No Cats Spoiled Here

And Libby would definitely not be spoiled. No way. Why would you ask?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Horses? On THIS Blog?

They've become quite the rarity lately, haven't they?

Today, Morgan was behind the camera. I think she did a pretty good job, considering the lighting wasn't the best.

Then Brooke took over the camera and there was a whole series of what I call the "I'm so vain" photos - the Self Portraits. Here's one of Miss Thang with her pink highlights. (They are only clip-ins. Whew!)