Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Great Outdoors

MBB loves being outdoors so much.  He cries when we come inside the house in the evenings.  He doesn't care if it is cold, dark or windy. I think I will enjoy this more in the Spring. :)

New Year's Goals 2011

A lot of my friends blogged about New Year's Goals on Jan. 1 - show offs.

Here are mine -

1. Blog more - blog more for myself, Genesis & start my freelance blog.  This includes a blog redesign, too.  What's that saying, "the landscaper always has the worst yard?".  Yeah.

2. Master the manual settings on my camera.

3. Try Indian food.  I have only had Indian food once at the hot bar at Whole Foods.  It tasted like stale leftovers.  Someone teach me the ways of curry!

4. Declutter house - CHECK!  Did this while prepping our house to sell.  There is nothing in our closets that we don't need & I have rid our house of tons of paperwork that needed to be shredded.

5. Go to 3 concerts and (re)discover music.  Before Mack, we used to listen to a LOT of music and go to plenty of concerts.  I miss that.  I loved being a fan of bands BEFORE they became popular.  I will fix that in 2011.

6. Become addicted to some form of exercise.  I think I could become a runner but it is just so boring.  Leaning towards yoga but I just need to try something new.

7. Not eat out as much.  Cook more and cook with Mack.  If this house sells, we will definitely need one of these at the next house.

8. Decide on when/how/if we will expand our family.  Infertility is a tricky thing so maybe towards the end of 2011 we will have a 'plan' or some idea of what we would like to do.  For now, though, Mack is so much fun, I can't imagine sharing my love and attention with someone else.

Elmore Christmas

My brother & his family couldn't make it to Christmas this year in Grapevine.  We missed them so badly.  I'm planning on seeing them in March & can't wait.

 Mack & Aunt Beth
 Mack & his new chair (it has a gansta lean).
 My mother was born & raised in Dayton, OH and each Christmas her sisters send her some Esther Price chocolates.  When we were little I remember us kids eating most of the chocolates.  Gosh, moms sure are self-less.  For the record, I did not have a single chocolate this year.  I hope my mom got to enjoy all of them.
Mack being silly with Beth.  He is still such a cuddle bug.

After this my camera died & the battery wouldn't charge.  I don't even have Burns Christmas pics!  I have since replaced my batter charger & we are back in business.

Christmas Decorations 2010

 Half of the Mantle
 Stocking - Jon, Mack, Sarah.  My sister, Beth, made Mack's stocking.  I was supposed to get around to making two that matched it for me & Jon this year but I didn't.  Maybe I should do that in the summer when work is slower.
 Minimally decorated tree.  Mack REALLY liked the ornaments.  The tree is completely uneven and instead of star, there are deer antlers.  I need to fix that problem.  Every morning when we would walk into the living room, Mack would point and say, "Tree!".  He was so cute with lights, too.  He would say, "ooOOOOOooo" each time he saw tree or house lights.
 My grandmother's nativity scene.  She got this when she got married in 1947 or 1948ish.  It's obviously missing a few pieces (I later found the baby Jesus in the toe of one of the stockings) but it's very sentimental.
 Vintage ornaments on the white tree.  I began collecting vintage Christmas ornaments the first year of our marriage.  I keep an eye out for them at Estate Sales, Canton & Garage Sales.  They can be quite pricey but I try to keep it cheap.  I have about 45 ornaments & they look great on this white tree in my turquoise, black & white dining room.
 Soap Stone Nativity Scene acquired in Kenya in 1996.  My first trip to Kenya and I fell in love with this soap stone carved nativity scene.  I originally bought it for my grandmother (same one as above) but once I got married she gave it back to me.  I love it.  I can still remember the face of the man who was carving and selling these.
I designed these to give out to our friends and donors at our Holiday Gala.  Using our Holiday branding & regular logo, these ornaments are nothing too special design wise but for sure this ornament will ALWAYS be on my tree.  I love this place and the work our amazing counselors and case managers do.  I love that I get to help make Christmas happen for hundreds of women & children who think that Santa will never find them in a Shelter.  Trust me, he not only finds them but he DELIVERS.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Decade Three

On Dec. 2nd, I turned 30.  Thirty!

I can't believe I'm so old.  Okay, it's not really that old but thirty!  I've already done all the 'major' things in life - college, traveled parts of the world, marriage, buy a house, birth a child.  It feels like I've done it all yet also that I haven't done anything.

I am finally starting to feel more like myself and for that I am grateful because the ages of about 17-22 were very weird for me.  I'm so glad I never have to be that age again.

Here's the thing about a Dec. 2 bday.  It gets lost in the Holidaze.  People are still sitting with their pants undone after Thanksgiving or are already knee-deep in tinsel that birthdays (including mine) are the last thing they want to celebrate.

I mean, I share the birthday month with Jesus.  Even though Christ was probably born sometime in the Spring, some ad wizard who needed to bring up sales in the 4th quarter decided to make Dec. 25th the day we celebrate the birth of our Lord & Savior.  Which is fine, I guess.

So Jon (along with his mom) planned a surprise party for me.  And I was super surprised.  For one, I was looking forward to spending that evening in my PJs, in my bed, watching TV or farting around on the internet.  He encouraged me to go with him to his parent's to drop Mack off and put on a real shirt (rather than a t-shirt), saying that he'd take me to dinner & coat shopping.  I reluctantly put on clothes.

We got to his parents and I came in from the garage towards the kitchen & was stunned to see my entire family (Elmores and Burns) plus dear friends there.  It was really great and I still haven't even sent Thank You notes (or all of our Christmas Cards).

It was a great night so if you came, Thank You!  I was very surprised to start Decade Three by peeing my pants (just kidding).