Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 Wrap-Up

This year has been interesting. I've had some grand adventures and some not-so-grand and entertaining misadventures. I love how my blog has come along and I'm still loving working on it and posting. :) It gives me a sense of satisfaction that I love. I can't wait to see how it looks to have it printed. Yay!

I'm so grateful for my service in the Church and I'm eternally grateful for my testimony. I love the scriptures and my Savior. I look forward for more opportunities to serve and grow in the Gospel.

2011 was a good year (Best: My first niece, Rachel was born!), but I'm hoping that 2012 will be even better. More grand adventures (here I come Chicago (hopefully)!), watching Rachel grow, Erin's wedding, and I'm sure there will be more.

Watch out 2012, here I come! :)

Welcome to the World!

Such a happy way to end this year....My niece, Rachel, was born on 12/29/2011 at 11:43pm!! Yay! Weighing in at 8 pounds, 13 ounces and 20 inches long, she is big and healthy and beautiful. (And no, I'm not biased, AT ALL.) :)


Putting on the little hospital jacket. It took 3 people because Rachel was so wiggly. :)
Rachel is really strong. She is already holding up her head! Yeah, she's less than a week old!

Moral of the story: I already have the most awesomest niece in the whole world.

Friday, December 30, 2011


Talk about one of the best nights EVER! in my family.

Erin found her wedding dress.

Caitlin had her baby.

I dare you to top that. :) It was like there was magic in the crisp air last night. :)

It was pretty exciting. Erin had scheduled to try on dresses at a little LDS bridal boutique at our favorite LDS bookstore (Cover to Cover) last night and when they got there, Cait wasn't with them. I asked why and Erin and Mom looked at each other and smiled. Thankfully they didn't drag it out. Caitlin was induced yesterday morning (she was 5 days overdue)!! But she hadn't had baby Rachel yet.

So we went on our merry way, bubbling with excitment. Our honorary little sister, Alyssa, came too and so we had fun dressing Erin up. Yay!!

Alright, so here a few pictures of the pretty dresses that Erin tried on.

THEN Erin tried on this dress. Winner! Winner! Chicken Dinner! I love Erin's smile in this picture. It's so obvious how much she loves this dress. She even swished in it like Julia Roberts in Runaway Bride. :)

 She loves the gorgeously long train. :)

She will be such a beautiful bride!!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Eve Traditions

So over the years we've kind of had an irregular tradition of spending Christmas Eve with our friends, the Fluckigers. It started when we were kids and we'd be gone for Christmas and so Mom was alone. So graciously, the Fluckigers would have Mom there for Christmas Eve. Then a few years ago, I was invited to go over there. Dinner was the bribe to get us to help wrap the kid's Christmas presents. And it worked. :)

This year, they invited our whole family over so we had quite the party.

Dinner was delicious and we had a fabulous time hanging out. Listening to the Christmas story and "A Pirate's Night Before Christmas" complete with Sean making pirate noises. :) It was pretty awesome and hilarious.

We had a wonderful time with lots of laughter and awesome food. And lots of excitment because Caitlin was due yesterday. Michelle was just WAITING for Cait's water to break in the middle of dinner. I think when it didn't she was mildly disappointed and relieved (har har!).

Michelle insisted that Caitlin use the Santa Snuggie because it fit over her belly perfectly. :) Caitlin wasn't so Jolly about it.
'Nuff said.
I made cream puffs to share with the family. Everyone was so excited. And they were Ahhhhmazing!
Sean and Alyssa. Colin is hiding behind Alyssa.
Erin, Steven, and Mom chillin'.

Colin did have his head on Alyssa's lap and it was really cute, but then Alyssa saw that I was taking a picture and moved and so Colin tried to duck out of the picture. Punks.
While we were there, someone doorbell ditched a beautiful charm bracelet off for Michelle. No one knows who it's from.
Mom, Lys, Michelle, Caitlin, & Sean watching A Christmas Carol.
Nick came over and was cuddling with Caitlin and had his head on her stomach and it was super cute. Then he realized that I was trying to take a picture so he moved. Punk.
Rachel started kicking and moving around and so everyone took turns feeling her move. It was funny to watch Kevin. He was a bit disturbed. He had never felt a baby move and so it kind of freaked him out. Caitlin forced him to feel it. He might have had nightmares that night. Bwahahaha!

So that was our Christmas Eve. And it was perfect. :)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Family Christmas!!!

Happy day! We got off early today at work! Wahoo! And that is why I'm posting in the middle of the afternoon...because I can! :) Anywhoooo....

Due to certain circumstances outside our control (ie: Cait's baby situation, ya know, coming any second, among others), Christmas was bumped up a bit! We celebrated today! December 22---The new Christmas! (That reminds me of the Modern Family Christmas Episode this year--they celebrated on December 16.. Bwahahaha!)

We had dinner and opened presents. The food was pretty good, if I do say so myself, though aparently my new-ish crockpot is broken. Half of the meat was way undercooked. :( I have yet to master the art of cooking roast. Maybe someday.

I kind of liked having Christmas a little early this year. It gave us time to hang out and have some down time to enjoy our new presents (books! lots of books!) and have the decorations up longer. At least it felt that way.

Here are some fun pictures from our little party.


Steven's Pirate Stocking was a perfect fit. ;)

Nick got to open up Rachel's Baby Scrapbook that I re-gifted. It was even done this time. Obviously, he was quite happy about it. :)

See! Cait is so excited to get a picture of the stocking she gets next year. Nick, well he wasn't so excited...

Erin was so excited to get a chocolate orange (a tradition in our family), but when she opened it, it was a Rock. Because she wanted a "rock" aka a diamond from Jim, her fiance. She did get one from him, and one from Santa. Except Santa's was a real rock. It was hilarious! hehehehehe!


One of my favorite parts is the mess afterwards! Seriously! I love all the bright, colorful paper strewn about and the smiles on everyone's faces. Except for some reason in the above picture---no one is smiling. Huh. Well, I assure you there were lots of smiles and laughter that night. :) And the great thing was that everyone loved their stockings. And Cait, Nick, and Baby Rachel are excited to get their's next year. :)

It was fun because a little later, some family friends of ours stopped by for a little visit. It was fun to hang out with Keith, his wife Dani, and Scott and laugh about all of Steven's mis-adventures as a child. (Steven and Keith have been BFF's for-ev-er.) :)

Definitely a fun night. Merry Christmas to us!

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Big Reveal: Christmas Presents!

Yay!! I'm so tired of keeping this secret. It's been killing me. Ok, slight exaggeration, but it has been annoying. Well, now the secret is out! We had our family Christmas tonight, so now I can share what I've been working on!

This year, as I've been hinting, implying, or outrightly stating, I've been working on really hard & very time consuming Christmas presents for my family. And I'll be honest. I didn't get them all done like I planned, but I did get 7 of 11 (or 12) done!

For the last couple of years, as a family, we've exchanged names and just did presents for one person each (which was my idea). Well...I found these last year and really wanted to make them, so I decided to ignore our new-ish tradition.

When we were kids, my Auntie Liz made us each an adorable stocking that we used our for entire childhoods. Well, now we're all adults and our stockings are old, so I thought new ones might be in order, especially since people keep getting added to our family! And because I can never do anything small or simply, I thought it would be fun to make Monica and her family stockings too.

The stocking kits are from Bucilla. They are felt stockings and everything is hand stitched. The only machine sewed part is the lining that I put inside the stockings and that is hand stitched to the stocking. Hopefully I stitched everything together well enough that these will last a long time. :) Oh, and I do have to give credit to Cait, she did pay for half of them as a joint Christmas present from both of us. :)

So, without further adieu, here they are!

Monica's (which took me three months alone):
Stephen's (Monica's husband):
Jesse's (Monica's son):
 All together now:

Nana's: (I have to give credit when it's due. Caitlin was a big help and actually made Nana's stocking all by herself. Thanks, sis!!)
Steven's (my personal fav!): This stocking is why I wanted to make everyone stockings. I saw this online and KNEW Steven NEEDED this in his life. It may or may not have anything to do with the fact that Steven has a alter-ego (one of several--including Napoleon: Seriously.So.Funny.) that is called "Pirate Steve" so naturally he needed a Pirate Santa stocking. :)

And here are the ones I'm going to make this next year, hopefully by next Christmas (I'm crossing my fingers):

Bucilla Snow Fun Snowman Felt Stocking Kit
Rachel's & Mine (we'll have matching ones--Cait's choice, not mine. :)) :
Oh, and I *might* have to make another one, depending on if/*coughwhencough* a certain baby sister of mine gets hitched. ;) Oh, wait, that WILL happen, so now I need to find a fun one for Jim....hmmm.........