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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

MY RED SNAKE and CHOCOLATE

So the day after Christmas I received my long anticipated package from Australia. My blogger friend frogdancer was knitting a scarf for me and I couldn't wait to get it. She has four boys just like me! However, she is single and takes care of them all on her own. She has dealt with great frustration over the child support laws, so she decided to start selling some of her knitting and other sewing projects. She makes these adorable little hats for babies that look like tomatoes. She also makes these scarves that look like snakes. Well, I really wanted one and when she asked me what age the child was so she could make the right length I cracked up! I didn't realize they were for toddlers. I wanted one for ME! LOL! She graciously offered to make me an extra long red snake to keep me warm. Isn't he cute? He wraps around my neck tightly and keeps me so warm. I just draped him loosely for the picture so you could see his head and tail. (Don't look at my after Christmas mess in the background!) Stop by her blog and see some of her knitting. Her blog is so fun to read. I love the grammar difference and her lingo. She thinks some of my lingo is funny too. If you don't have an Aussie blog friend, you must get one! LOL!
She also surprised me with some great chocolate. Ok, I LOVE chocolate and it is part of my daily diet. But I also am terrified of rodents. So, how funny that the wrappers had a few rodent looking creatures on it. Hmmm......kind of unappealing to me for such a yummy treat. But do you think that stopped me from eating it? NO WAY! This chocolate was so creamy.One thing I REALLY love about this chocolate from Australia is the label. There are NO calories listed. They have it listed as ENERGY. Wow, I need a lot of energy, so does that mean I can eat them all? LOL! I know that calories and energy are the same thing but seeing energy on the label just makes it seem less bad for me.
Speaking of calories and energy...............If I am around here blogging less it is because I am here.....
At the gym. My friend Jeanne and I got a short free membership and have been going on a regular basis. We go about 3 miles on the tread mill and then hit the other machines for weight training. Then we go sit in the hot sauna for a while. Don't we look exhausted?


Being on a gluten free diet has actually been hard for me. In the beginning I lost some weight but now I am at my highest weight ever. All the gluten free breads and products are made from rice or potatoes and you know how fattening that stuff can be. I also do eat to much chocolate because that is gluten free too. I am very unhappy with how I look and that is the main reason why you do not see many pictures of myself here on the blog. But that will change soon! I am hooked on the gym and I EXPECT results! Have a great week, ya'll.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

CHRISTMAS SURPRISES

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. When my sister and her family arrived at my house that afternoon we all gathered to exchange gifts. We always let someone pick the first name. I said it should be Austin because he is the youngest. Dad kept saying he wanted to pick cuz he is the oldest. Well, my sister Sara kept insisting that I go first and go ahead and open a gift. I didn't want to open one and wanted to do it the way we always did but of course she won that argument! Here is why she wanted me to open it. (That is my mom you hear in the background. She was so excited!)
video
I also had another Christmas surprise that arrived the day after Christmas in the mail. It was something special from Frogdancer my blogger friend in Australia. I will post about that tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

CHRISTMAS EVE

Come on in. The cider is warm and the scents are unbelievable.

There are cookies and hot chocolate. Or maybe you would like some tea.We spent Christmas eve with Melissa and Tyler. Melissa is my exhusband's sister. Her and I have remained friends over the years. Tyler is her daughter. She is the sweetest girl you will ever meet. Tonight we are having........... FONDUE! I dug out my old retro recipie card boxes. Do you remember these? They had a whole section on fondue.How nice and neat all the recipies are in these. I wish all mine were so neatly organized. I have an old picnic basket full of recipies I have torn out of magazines and stuff. What a mess. I have several fondue pots and Austin has been bugging about have it one night, so I figured why not Christmas eve. Do you see my Hershey kiss shaped fondue pot? Yep, that is chocolate in there. So what do you dip in chocolate?How about strawberries, pretzels, or some pound cake. Better yet a marshmallow dipped and then rolled in graham cracker crumbs.
And what would you dip in melted swiss and cheddar cheese? How about some grilled hotdogs, toast, brocolli or deep fried mashed potatoes? MMMM.... Those were a big hit.


Every one was hanging around having fun dipping.

It was so good. Wes tried the brocolli and chocolate together. He called it chocolli! Not very good he said.
We had such a wonderful time together. Here I am with Tyler in front of my tree. The pictures are all so dark because I had all the candles and oil lamps lit. Have to have some ambience right? LOL!
OH, and my sweet best friend came by to show me her big fat baby belly! We do not get to see each other often, so it was really good to see her. She was supposed to bring ultrasound pictures but forgot them. UGH....I was so mad. She seems to be pregnant all over and not just in her belly. We all think it is going to be a girl! I hope!


Sweet dreams ya'll.......MERRY CHRISTMAS

Making Goodies

So Monday night was spent in the kitchen with mom and Austin. I wanted to make some little boxes of goodies for my co workers. Here's me and mom working on the peanut butter fudge. Fudge is a two man job if you ask me! I put the fudge in my pretty cobalt blue pyrex dish and put it in the fridge to cool. Later when I opened the fridge the glass dish flew out and smashed to the floor. It was such a loud crash and the dish broke in a million tiny fragments. So much for the fudge............
On to peanut butter balls. Austin begins the dipping processMom joins in.I also tried to make homemade peppermint patties and they failed. I am not sure why because I have made them before. Mom just does not understand why I always try new stuff at such a busy time. I am brave like that! I did try this new cookie. It is made with fresh peaches and sprinkled on top with cinnamon in sugar. Everyone really loved them. I also made chocolate covered pretzels with colored sprinkles. See these little containers I got to put the goodies in. Aren't they just cute.


Wish I could send all of you some homemade goodies! We were back in the kitchen last night making cookies for our Christmas day get together and we will be busy in the kitchen today.....once again I am trying something new........hmm..............wonder how this will turn out!

ps I got word yesterday that a dear, sweet couple that I know from the church I used to attend were driving to visit family on Monday night and were hit by a drunk driver. Thank God they are both alive, but she has broken her back and has no feeling. They will try to operate on her today. He has injuries too and is hospitalized. This is the sweetest couple I know. They treated me like family and she gave me a hug every Sunday morning. Please take a moment and say a prayer for them. They are Harold and Bobby White.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

WRAPPING THE GIFTS

It seems like the weeks of December have just flown by and now here we are at the week of Christmas. Wow, where did the time go? Above is my little front porch lighted with some garland. Our stop sign counts down the days till Christmas. One thing that I usually put a lot of thought in to is wrapping paper. I know that may sound funny but I like to try and find paper that relates to each kid. The year Billy got braces I found paper that had reindeer with braces! It was so cute. Sometimes it is hard to come up with new paper ideas and most time I have to order it from catalogs. Well this year I had a different idea. I got that shiny colored paper and each kid chose which color they liked. I have never used this paper and I think it looks so pretty under the tree. For all the other family members I got shiny silver that has these velvety snowflakes. It all looks so nice. The only drawback to this paper that is the tape does not stick as well. I keep having to re-tape corners.
As I started wrapping the stuff for the stockings we all realized that we could have coordinated the color of gift wrap with the stocking. I forgot all about that fact that the stocking were all of the same colors as the paper. Only Aaron's matched up. Blue with blue.

It seems that the most color under the tree is gold. That is the color Austin picked. The other boys keep saying that I did that on purpose because he is the 'golden child' and will get the most! LOL! They are so funny. Well, I am off to wrap some more gift. I am really getting excited and there is so much going on this week.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Memorial Service at Law Enforcement Center

The local law enforcement center held a tree lighting ceremony in memory of those who lost their lives this year to traffic fatalities and homicides. I took Aaron and Austin. The oldest two did not want to go. It was a very nice service and they assured us that they try to do everything possible to make these drunk drivers pay, but I still do not believe that things will go in our favor. The local news did a story on the tree lighting and of all the 42 names on the list, the news clip showed them reading the names: Bill Carey, Ruth Carey. That was really special for us. I tried to upload a clip but blogger is not letting me.
You can click Here
to go to our local news video and type in the search box- memorial for victims and drop the box down to last 7 days to watch the clip. They do talk a little bit about a young girl here who was murdered, but you can hear the officer reading the names and see the tree of angels that we got to pick an ornament from.
What a hard holiday this will be.

Monday, December 15, 2008

EARLY CHRISTMAS?

So the other day I came home and the three older boys were begging me to let Austin open one of his Christmas presents. One of them knew what was in the box and of course told the other two. Looks like Billy is really excited about this gift.
So is Wes.

Look at these guys fighting over this one gift!
Austin is shaking it to see if he can guess. Billy is listening...... what could it be.I told Austin if he could guess then I would let him open it. He did not want to guess because he thought I would be upset because he was spoiling Christmas for me. The boys were torturing him. (NO Billy is NOT smoking inside the house! That is a big NO NO here. LOL!)
In this video clip Billy tries to explain the rules.


video Those rules got thrown out and mom made her own rules. Since Austin's birthday was the other week I made Billy and Wes sing and dance the Happy Birthday song to him. video videoSo what was all the fuss about? The new xbox game, Mortal Kombat vs DC universe. What happened was that Billy and Wes had asked Aaron to take them to rent the game at Blockbuster. Aaron told them no because I did not want them to rent it since I had bought it for Austin. So, I guess it was Happy Late Birthday for Austin or Early Merry Christmas! Yeah for him. Took a lot of effort on everyone's part to get that gift open.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

UPDATE ON PHONE

One of Wesley's friends, Brittany suggested that I put my phone down in a bag of rice overnight to absorb the moisture out of it. Made sense to me since people often do this with salt shakers. Well, good news is that my phone works just fine except for the screen is murky and green. As you know I have been using my cell phone for pictures here so I tried to take one of my tree. This is how that turned out!
LOL! The big dark spots with the long ends are my bubble lights. Oh, well at least I can talk on it.

Monday, December 8, 2008

CAN I KILL HIM NOW?

Wes was helping to close up the pool at his grandparent's house and HE DROPPED MY NEW PHONE IN THE DEEP END!!! The phone is shot and verizon said I have to pay retail price for a new one. The cheapest they had was $300. There is NO WAY I am paying that. What a way to start the week :(

Thursday, December 4, 2008

BREAKING THE WISH BONE

Here are two quick video clips of Wes and Austin breaking the wish bone on Thanksgiving day. Yes that is my baby Austin with the tall hat. He is the youngest but has the deepest voice of all four boys. And today IS HIS BIRTHDAY. HAPPY 14TH BDAY AUSTIN. video And YES- Wes is still unemployed as you can hear. video

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

LET IT SNOW!

Everyone was all a buzz yesterday. Sandy called from work and said it was snowing. All of us girls in the office ran outside. We saw ONE snowflake! Oh how I hope we get some snow this year. Growing up in PA, snow was part of our life. But here in the south you are lucky to get snow and when you do it is not a 'real' snow. People here go crazy when they think it might snow. Just stop into any store and you can see that the bread and milk shelves are empty. Seems to me if I am going to get snowed in I am going to want some real food. A dusting of snow around here calls for everything being closed too. It is so funny to me how different people react to the snow here than where I grew up.
I LOVE SNOW! PLEASE LET IT SNOW FOR US THIS YEAR!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

THANKSGIVING DAY PHOTOS

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Mom and I tried to take the easy road out this year and cut a few corners. One thing we did was use paper plates and plasticware. That way we did not have so many dishes to do. Last year they got me this cute little craft kit that you use to make name cards and some ribbon to tie up napkins. Here mom is working on one.Wes wanted to be the one to decide where everyone would sit.Here is how they looked. I did not get any pictures of the meal or all of us at the table. Mom has all of them on her camera and I forgot to load them to my computer. After the meal it was time for our BINGO game. We started this tradition about 4 years ago. We never had much to do after we ate and who wants to sit around watching TV on such a special day when your whole family is together. It is so funny how the room gets so quiet when I start calling numbers. They take this so serious! Here is Sara and Wes using some buttons she brought.Here are Melissa and Tyler focusing on their cards. This was the first year that they came over. Melissa is still having a hard time and wanted to do something very different for the holidays, so she was so happy when she heard about our bingo game.Ok, Austin is the strange one in the family. He wore a suit to dinner with a cat in the hat hat! He is really concentrating on his board.We had 15 prizes to give away. Some were real nice and some were funny. Sara helped me buy most of them this year. I really need to start preparing early on and pick up things all thru the year. Wes was sad to have won the light up reindeer ears. He actually ended up having fun with them and making people laugh.
Tyler won the cash!
Bridgette won some mugs and apple cider. She looks so happy all the time now that she is pregnant :)


Mom, Billy and Austin did not win but someone gave Billy a big box of gum balls and Wes gave mom a candle. How thoughtful they all were.

I love traditions and I grew up with many that I have passed on to my own kids. I think that this bingo idea has been a great hit. Everyone always looks forward to it. Just to hang out and have fun and have a little gift to take home too. Hope your day was fun too!