Saturday, December 31, 2011

December Daily -- The End!

December 24th
Visiting my Maw on Christmas Eve
In this new year to come, I hope to be able to go and sit and talk to her without crying.  That's what she would want.   I love her so much and miss her more than I can bear sometimes.

 December 25th
My handsome nephew, Christopher, who at 17 is still our baby

December 26th
My Thanksgiving cactus finally blooming!

 December 27th
Christmas, packed away for another year 

December 28th
My winter mantel with a bit of a woodland theme, mushrooms, gnomes and owls and of course, Dieter, the German nutcracker  :)

December 29th
Smiley face in the clouds that I spotted while sitting at my desk that just confirmed to me that 2012 is going to be the best year I've had in a long time.  Stay tuned...

December 30th
Fireworks tent set up in a parking lot here
I am still not used to seeing these things in Georgia!

December 31st
Welcome 2012!
I just know you're going to be amazing!!!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Yellow Submarine bathroom

I've been searching the internet today for Yellow Submarine bathroom items and looky here what I found!  I was just talking a hand towel and a throw rug.  These people are SERIOUS!  
 



And then there's this one:

 Just wow.

Monday, December 26, 2011

'Twas the day after Christmas...

Hope everybody had a wonderful Christmas!!  We did, in spite of the cold pouring rain.  I was still barefoot and in shorts most of the day anyway.  AND I got a nap on Christmas afternoon.  Life was goooooood.  

Here are a few pics from our weekend!

Daddy's delicious homemade chili that we had Christmas Eve with hot dogs.  It's a tradition we've started and that chili gets better and better every year!  This year he put ground chicken in it, too, and that was my favorite part.  It was SO good!!!!
 
Mama roasted pecans, too.  Yum!!!
 

Goodies on the bar.

We had two kinds of cake, cookies, Mama's Martha Washington candy, fudge, peanut butter buckeyes, the chess bars I brought and some banana nut bread that one of my neighbors made for me.  (And Maw was with us, too!)  My mama does not mess around when it comes to Christmas.  She makes these goodies for us every year, she cooks a huge meal and pretty much works herself to exhaustion seeing that we have everything that we could possibly want and whatever else she can dream up in that sweet head of hers.  Here she is on Christmas morning making my hot chocolate:


 
Daddy got us these little snowman marshmallows.
SOOOO cute!!

One side of the tree full of presents.

 Here's Daddy wearing his furry warm 
hat that Ami and Brian gave him!

Mama, Audra and Ami
It's SO funny that they're all holding a camera!

Sweet Brian, just chillin' with the stockings.

This beloved boy WON a camera for me for Christmas!!  Ami told me last week that they had a magical Santa surprise for me and I had NO IDEA what it could be.  They gave me this envelope Christmas Eve with this card inside telling me about the camera and that I'll get it sometime next month!  It's a Sony Cyber-shot and I am SO excited!!!

 These were my presents from Larry



Brian took this one of me when I opened my 
Beatles Yellow Submarine shower curtain from Larry 
and then realized what it was!  :)


 It is such a bright, happy and BEAUTIFUL yellow!
I absolutely love it!!  I told Larry today that I want to redo the bathroom in the Yellow Submarine theme, rugs, towels and a replica of the album on the wall.

 What Santa left in my stocking, 
along with some Bath and Body Works shower gels, 
paint brushes and flux brushes. 

My swag (as Larry calls it!)

From Mama and Daddy:  Poofies, Bath and Body Works shower gels in Cherry Blossom and Black Raspberry Vanilla, Philosophy Amazing Grace 3-in-1 shower gel, shampoo and bubble bath (my very favorite!!!), a voltage detector (It is SO COOL!!!  It will be so helpful finding shorts in circuits!  I walked around the house with it last night checking all kinds of stuff for shorts. Ha!), a lavender soy candle, a tub of flux and flux brushes for soldering, The Very Best of Dwight Yoakam CD (that is just awesome!!  I listened to it today.  I love it.), some paint brushes and two Wilton cake pans that are very much needed!  Mine are so raggedy.  Mama has made about a billion cakes in her life and she always used Wilton pans and products, they're the best money can buy.  So that's what she got me.

From Ami and Brian:  a beautiful set of black silky pajamas and the softest black and gray plaid scarf.  And The Camera!!!

My Aunt Elizabeth gave me the book, We Bought A Zoo.  I can't wait to get started on it!


Larry got me these.  The Yellow Submarine shower curtain, my tambourine (yay!!!), a super nice Mercer Millenia chef's knife (with a finger guard, my baby knows me and loves me!  Ha!), four olive wood spoons from Crate and Barrel and Berard (I LOVELOVELOVE wooden spoons!  I don't like molded plastic anything so I do a lot of my cooking with bamboo spoons.  I have never even SEEN spoons as nice as these!!), the coolest inflatable snake scarecrow to keep the critters off my strawberries and 'maters next year, a super cool Belkin Conserve Insight, which tells you how much electricity your appliances and things are using, what they're costing you and the CO2 (carbon dioxide) you're generating.  I played with this thing last night and I was absolutely AMAZED at what it told me!!  My Christmas lights, for example, produce 86 pounds of CO2, cost me $8.25 per day and use 99 watts of electricity.  My landline telephone on the other hand, produces only 13.7 pounds of CO2, costs me $1.31 per day and only uses 1.2 watts of electricity.  No wonder everybody's light bill is sky high in January!!  He also got me a stuffed Angry Birds plush doll simply because he liked it.  Neither of us play Angry Birds.  :)  The gift that made me cry was the flannel shirt.  He picks out these things for me from magazines and catalogs he sees during the year, saving ads here and there for things he likes.  Then at Christmas (or our anniversary and my birthday), he'll send the money to Ami and she orders the stuff for me.  She always wraps everything so beautifully and she's so sweet to help him with my presents.  She sends him the gift tags and he fills them out and sends them back to her.  They've been doing this for so long that it's like a perfectly choreographed dance.  Okay, back to the shirt.  Waaaaaay back in the day, when my baby was free, he wore a lot of flannel shirts in the winter.  He wanted me to have one as if it was his, big, oversized and long, 'cause he's a tall boy.  He even picked out the colors, reds and blues.  He also wanted it washed and soft so that I could just put it on.  And that I did.  I LOVE it but what I love most is his sweet, romantic little soul.  He is forever thinking of ways to show me that he loves me, even though I know he adores me just as I adore him.  I just don't know what else to say about that except the Lord sho' knew what He was doing when He led me to Larry.  I know without a doubt that I was handpicked by God Himself to be Larry's wife.  I got a little irritated today in the visitation room (as I do quite frequently.  Ha!), because we had eavesdroppers.  I cannot STAND that.  Lord, I wanted to slap somebody the day after Christmas.  The Baby Jesus was JUST BORN, for goodness' sake!!  When people discover how long we've been together, we become almost like celebrities to them.  They stare, watch our every move, want to get all in our business and ask me questions like, "How do you do it?".  How do I do WHAT??  Love my husband?  If I'd met Larry in a bookstore (which is my fantasy :)) in 1988, guess what?  We would still be together today.  The way we live our life is no different from any other couple and when we're having a private conversation, don't lean sideways and try to hear.  K??

Anyway, hope you all had the merriest of Christmases and are looking forward to fantastic 2012!!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Cookies for Santa

Christmas Eve, we decorated Christmas cookies!

Mama putting her touch on a cookie wreath

Me painting an angel with yellow hair and pearls

We got Daddy in on it!

 Nutter Butter Snowman I made :)

 
 I mustache you a question...
(Mama made this one with the 
green mustache!  SO cute!!)


Friday, December 23, 2011

Wrappin' it up

I'm packing up, bagging up, wrapping up on this Christmas Eve Eve because tomorrow will be a whirlwind for me!  I'll be with Larry until 3:00, church at 5:00 and then I'll head on down to Macon County as soon as church is over.  I've had such a peaceful, calm December that I won't mind one crazy day.  I got all my shopping done early so I wasn't out in the crowds much, although I DID have to go out and get a new toilet seat today.  The hinge finally broke after being wobbly for two weeks.  Guess it got tired of me ignorin' it.  Since I live so close, I was just going to run to Target and get another one.  When I got there, though, I could not find a parking place.  At ALL.  And traffic was horrendous.  Did everybody wait until the last minute??  So I went to Lowe's instead.  No trouble there.  I was in and out with my new beige guaranteed-to-be-wobble-free toilet seat in less than ten minutes.

These are all the presents that were under my tree.  They ALL get opened at Mama and Daddy's house.  :)

 Here are some goodies I'm taking!
Dinner rolls and chess bars that sweet Beth Yoder made for me, reindeer food for Rudolph and the gang that a precious set of triplets made for us at work and I brought home today, some homemade cranberry sauce that I made and a gallon of my apple cider that I made Wednesday.

Close up of Beth's chess bars. There were 12 of 'em. 
I put them in this gift box and one of 'em got lost during the move. :)

Maw's sweet little bird casserole dish will serve our cranberry sauce.  I am really going to miss her Sunday.  :(  My first Christmas in 44 years that I won't tell her what Santa Claus brought.  But you know what?  I bet she already knows.

Here's everything ready to go!
Two huge Christmas gift bags, one jumbo IKEA bag and one Trader Joe's bag.

Gotta leave this in the mailbox!

I have to share my Christmas cards!
Well, one wall of them anyway.  I get so many because my sweet husband makes sure I get one every day in December, right on up until Christmas.  He sends me 26!  He gathers some and makes some.  Precious boy, that one.

One more of our tree.
Merry Christmas!

Fill in the blank Friday!

The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!  Ha!  No offense to Buddy, but I think the BEST way to do it is by giving with your heart and not your pocketbook.

The thing I love most about Christmas is the good will toward men feeling that happens around this time of year.  Everybody is kinder and smiles come easily.  They just can't DRIVE!!  Ugh.  :)

The Christmas season is a time for celebrating the birth of Jesus and for thanking God for His Christmas (and every day!) gift to us.

I will be spending Christmas Eve and Day at my mama and daddy's house with my sister, brother-in-law, brother, sister-in-law and nephew and anybody else who shows up!  We love us some Christmas travelers.  I am SO looking forward to some wrapping-paper-picture-taking-madness and then some relaxing time with my family.

My favorite thing to eat at Christmas is Mama's Martha Washington candy!  It looks like this: 

Hush ya mouth.

'Tis better to give or receive?  I don't know anybody who'd say receive right here!  Be some seffish somebody is all I know.  It is absolutely better to GIVE!!  I love shopping for my family and seeing their faces when they open what I found for them. 

I'm dreaming of a fun-filled family Christmas!  Lots of laughter, hugs and full tummies.

Merry Christmas!

Presents!

My loot from the past two days!
My coworkers and friends, Lisa P and Lisa S gave me these cool gifts!

Lisa P gave me the pedicure set and spearmint foot soak.  Bless her heart, she's been suffering right along with me with my foot the past couple of months.

Lisa S gave me the super cool peace sign sunglasses, these adorable garden gnome salt and pepper shakers and awesome little Beatles compact mirror.

Do these girls pay attention to me or what??  

 Look how cute the gnomes are on my table with Brandy's mushroom!

We have had the most amazing December at the office with our Secret Santa gifts, the endless goodies brought to us by parents and reps, our wonderful Christmas luncheon we had yesterday at Olive Garden courtesy of Dr. Niebaum, who is awesome all by himself.  We just have the best time together!  I'm so blessed to work with such sweet, genuinely caring people. 

December Daily

December 21st
My hot apple cider boiling in a pot!

December 22nd
My Snowbot, one of my Christmas gifts last year from Larry.  
He connects to a USB so he likes to hang out near my Mac.

December 23rd
My future's so peaceful, oh, never mind.
Got these cool sunglasses today from my friend, Lisa.
I love 'em!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy Winter Solstice!


Cute, huh??  Today is the first full day of winter, the shortest day of the year.  I'll go along with that last part since it's 6:30 and pitch dark already outside.  BUT!!  From now until spring, every day will be a little bit longer, a little bit brighter.

I hate winter.  I hate cold weather.  I only want snow one morning a year and then I want it melted and gone by noon.  I am a sunny child.  I need sunshine and bright blue skies.  I tolerate winter and thank the Sweet Baby Jesus every day that He put me in Georgia.

Today, on this 22nd day of December, the Winter Solstice, it is a warm and toasty 72 degrees.  We're even under a tornado watch right now.  
See??


I still need to make bows and put ribbons on my presents so I'll go do that now.  In my shorts and tank top and, of course, barefoot.  :)
 
Merry Winter Solstice Rainy Tornado Day!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

You wanna cry? Well, here you go. :)

Gone to Ukraine on an airplane...

I just got this email and my little shoebox went to Ukraine!  I know NOTHING about Ukraine so I Googled it (you know that I did!) and saw that Christianity is not even a main religion over there.  Judaism and Islam are the main two.  I'm so excited that these children are going to hear about Jesus!

Merry Christmas, little Ukranian girl.  :)

Dear Ginger Schneider,

Merry Christmas from Samaritan's Purse! Thank you for participating in Operation Christmas Child and for choosing to Follow Your Box. Your gift box(es) went to

Ukraine

For photos, stories, and other information about Operation Christmas Child in this country, click the country name above. Please remember to pray for the children who will be receiving your shoe box gift(s).

A shoe box gift is often the first step on a child's journey to faith in Jesus Christ. Learn how many boys and girls continue on the path toward Jesus through The Greatest Journey, our exciting discipleship program that teaches children to become faithful followers of Christ.

Thank you, and may God richly bless you.

What I'm loving Wednesday!

I haven't done my WILW all month!  Did you miss 'em??  :)


I'm loving that it's FOUR days till Christmas!!  I just hope I made the list! 


I'm loving this sweet little wooden German nutcracker that Dr. Niebaum and his family gave me for Christmas!  I am seriously going to leave him out all year.  I just love his little face!!!


I'm loving how wonderful my house is smelling right now after I cooked this apple cider all afternoon.  Apple juice and mulling spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and cloves).  Yum!!


And I found a couple of Christmas images online that were just right up my alley.  :)