Monday, November 23, 2009

The Gift of Family

Thinking of things I'm thankful for this week, but of course I'm thankful for them always, and I wanted to share a couple of those.

1. First up is a the Gift of Family. Not just the LO, but the actual gift of having a family. A husband who loves me despite all my flaws, one very creative and very outgoing little girl who's mission it is to dress up in a different Princess dress every single day, and another little girl who's more shy and reserved until you know her but then incredibly funny and cuddly too. Yes, I'm most definitely thankful for my family.

Monday, November 16, 2009

WHAT a great weekend!

Wow! That seriously was one of the best weekend's I've had in a LONG time! It was just so much fun! :D Josh and I went to Oxford to see the Rebels play Tennessee. That game's always a little tricky because it dictates the mood of the following week. If WE win, then we have a great week rubbing it in to all our TN friends. But if we LOSE then we have to hear it over and over and over....there's just so many of them! But as it turns out it was a GREAT game (for us). And it looks like it'll be a great week! :D

The final score was 42-17. At one point I even got a little bored watching (but not too bored of course), so I started playing around with my camera. And it's a good thing! I ended up with some shots that I'm REALLY happy with!

Dexter McCluster's big run (later named Nat'l. Player of the Week)

He ran right past us, and I had my camera in hand!

Tennessee's field goal attempt THAT WE BLOCKED!

The massive UM flag in front of the TN section

And then tailgating in the Grove.

But it's more than just tailgating. Everyone sets up these tents at 5am, and it's wall to wall people. Women hang candelabras, order catering for massive feasts, bring out their best serving pieces and display HUGE floral centerpieces of red and blue roses. It's tailgating like no other. And it's one of my favorite places to be. I love Oxford, the Grove, and all things Ole Miss.

Other great highlights of our trip were:

1. Not having to break in to Dennis's house Friday night, but seeing/hanging out with him instead.
2. Running into Mitchell & Gigi, Shea & Terry, and Filly in the Grove. We all got to catch up, chat, reminisce and enjoy each other's company.
3. Touring the Phi Mu house and seeing all its amazing renovations. Oh MY it was beautiful! And memories came FLOODING back! (and made me feel REALLY old)
4. Eating at Old Venice, the place of our first date. And then getting to order my absolute FAVE--crawfish pizza!!! Only in Mississippi can you find such a delectable treat! (okay, maybe Louisiana too, but still it's the best!)
5.Nice QUIET drives to and from Oxford! At one point Josh and I just enjoyed the silence and being together. Funny the little things you appreciate after having kids.
6. Seeing the excitement on the girls' faces when we came to pick them up. That's always a warm fuzzy feeling too. As much as it nice is to get away, it's just as nice to know you're loved and missed by the kiddos.

Overall FANTASTIC weekend! I can't wait to do it again next year! Thanks Sarah and Mike! Next year we won't plan it for the same weekend as Charity Ball. ;) And thanks Mom and Jim for keeping the kids! ;)

Thursday, November 12, 2009

It's been a sad sad week around this house.

For the last 10 days or so, we've been without a "bonkie" aka blankie for Caroline. It's been so heartbreaking to tuck her in bed each night and remind her that we haven't found it yet. So so sad. At one point she even said, "Mommy, I don't want to use Baby Kate's and pwetend it's mine. I want MY bonkie." Sad. Pathetic. Heart-wrenching. We've called to see if we'd left it anywhere. We've turned the house upside down searching for it. I even told a friend the other day that I was thinking about just replacing it even though it wouldn't be the same. And ironically, about 2 weeks ago I'd taken these pictures of her with it in anticipation of a "love" layout. But since then, I haven't had the heart to scrap them.

Well today, yes today, WE FOUND IT!!!!! WOOOOHOOOOOO! I had no clue how much that tattered smelly old blanket meant to her...and me. We did the happy dance when we found it! :D And to top it all off, we found 2 missing library books too! Oh yeah! It's a good day here! :D :D :D Baby girl is ecstatic, and Mommy's happy too! :D

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A couple SK layouts and a thank you

I've been scrapping a lot lately and I finally get to share. Thanks to tropical storm Ida, we've had a LOT of rain that's kept me from taking pictures of my work. But not any longer!

I'm still working on "catching up" on Sarah Kate's pages. I do a really good job, I think, of taking just as many pictures of her as I do Caroline. Scrapping them is a whole different story. And so later in life instead of hearing "Mom, you didn't take as many pictures of me!" as most younger siblings exclaim, I'm going to hear, "Mom you didn't scrapbook as many layouts for me!" Sooo, I'm trying to remedy that. Here are 2 that happen to be 2 new favorites of mine.

For this 1st one, I called it "Tell me" because I want her to tell me WHEN she got so big!!! (I'm not a fan of the growing UP part of growing up.)

Sketch by Becky Fleck, but then I think I kinda deviated so far from it that I probably could claim it as my own. At what point can you do that? Whatever the case, I originally started out with her sketch in mind. The creative process just overtook it.

This one's "Grateful". I did it from a challenge over at Treasured Scrapbooking. It's a little simpler than I usually do, but then it also only took me 30 min. to do it! I just LOVE it when creativity hits, and a page just flies together! So fun!

Journaling reads,"SK-I'm so incredibly grateful that God chose to spare you from a horrific pregnancy and keep you as one of our family." Obviously there's a much longer story to that, but now's not the time. I don't have the emotional energy. But at this time of year when everyone says they're thankful for family, I always think of her and how thankful I am for her. Not that I love her more, or Caroline any less, I'm just exceedingly grateful. "...For He is faithful in all He does." Ps. 33:4

Speaking of faithful, on this Veteran's Day, I want to thank my grandfather John Frank Dail, for not only faithfully serving in our military, but also for serving his wife and family for so many years. Even as I type he's sitting at Grandmother's bedside. He's probably either sleeping or driving her nuts, but still. He's there. He's faithful like that. And there aren't enough words, and "thank you" just doesn't seem to be enough. But I AM thankful, and grateful, and very proud to be his granddaughter.

Thank you to all the other past and present servicemen and women out there too! Thank you for protecting our freedom!

Sorry to end in such an serious sentimental note. I hadn't intended on ending like that. But I hope everyone is have a wonderful mid-week! I'm looking forward to the Grove on Saturday! ;) :D (More on that later.)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Been playing with "Mill Street"

I got the latest (and now sold out) Noel Mignon kit last week, and I'm 100% in love. The first few times I pulled the papers out, I just stared at them. They're just so pretty! I didn't want "mess them up" by cutting them! I finally broke down and dove in to some Cosmo Cricket goodness, and now I'm thinking I need more of these papers! Who would've thought that turquoise would be a great Fall color?! But it is! And again, I'm in love. This time it's with CC's Nutmeg. Good grief! And I believe the sermon I/we heard on Sunday was about contentment. Ugh. Tough stuff when it comes to me and paper...Here's what I've done with it so far. I've got another one on my table right now.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Gift cards, free scrappy kits, and more

Search & Win

Want to earn free gift cards towards places like Amazon, Starbucks, Target or iTunes? How 'bout money in your PayPal account? Use Swagbucks. I know I've talked about this before here on my blog, but I thought it was worth revisiting with the Christmas season right around the corner.

You may have noticed the widget on my sidebar over there. I've posted it in hopes that you'll trust me and use Swagbucks as your search engine. It's not a hoax, it's not a gimic. By using Swagbucks do searches on the internet, you'll earn points called Swagbucks, which after you've accumulated so many you, you can cash in for gift cards, music, and other goodies in their online store.

Quite honestly, the only way that I've used Swagbucks is by using its toolbar for searches. It's that simple. I search (and now "search" for everything so I'll get more bucks), I gain Swagbucks, and then I cash in for gift cards. So far I've earned over $20 in gift cards, and I'm about to cash in again for more.

You know what a scrap addict I am, so I've chosen to put those gift cards in my PayPal account to buy kits with! :D I've also put aside an Amazon gift card to start buying Christmas toys for the girls. So in essence, I'm doing these searching in turn for free or discounted scrapbook kits and toys for my kids! I love it!

I just wanted to encourage you to use it too. There are more ways to utilize Swagbucks more than just doing searches, but since I'm on the internet all day, I just do the searches. It uses Google and to do the actual searches. And it's a great way to start saving for Christmas.

Just thought I'd throw it out there. You can start you're own Swagbucks account here. It's free. It's easy. And hey, they're paying me just for doing searches! It doesn't get any easier than that!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Halloween costume photoshoot

Learning my lesson from last year, I decided to do a trial run on the costumes and hair the day before Halloween this time. Which turned out to be great because not only could I fix C's hair without a major time stress factor, but also because I was able to get spend more time taking their pictures. (I HIGHLY recommend going this route, because the day OF Halloween is so so stressful. And all the girls wanted to do was go get candy.) Sooo, here are just a few of my favorites:

Our Stinkerbell, who most definitely played the part during pictures. I don't think I've EVER seen her so excited (or hyper for that matter):

And our gorgeous Little Mermaid, all dolled up with RED hair just like Ariel!

I like this one because she's IN LOVE with her costume and it shows on her face.

The ones with the two of them together didn't turn out as good as I'd hoped. Again, Stinkerbell was mostly to blame.

Trick-or-treating pics are coming soon. I took so many that they need to be edited.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Taking on a new challenge

Usually when I "speak" of challenges, especially on my blog, I'm talking about ones that are related to scrapbooking. But I ran across this one from Kingdom First Mom called the 30-day Giving Challenge and decided that this is something I want to challenge MYSELF to do. (And I'm blogging about it so you guys will all keep me accountable to it, and maybe even join me.)

Here's how she describes it:
"I invite you to take a leap of faith and give in some fashion every day this month. Think beyond monetary gifts. Couponers, open up your stockpiles. Bakers, share some pumpkin bread with a neighbor. Get creative!

Most importantly, ask God to lead you each day.

Just remember to write it down. Not in a boastful, look-how-generous-I-am kind of way. But to keep yourself accountable and be transformed.

SOOO, seeing as how today is November 1st I thought I'd challenge myself, and anyone else who wants to join in, to participate and get to giving. I've already got today's planned and am giving it tonight. ;) And I'll tell ya, I'm trying to think of 30 different ways to give. I'd like to do something different every day. So if you have any ideas, leave me a comment. I'd love to add to my list...

Oh, and you know me, I still have to make in to something scrappy. ;) Instead of the December Daily that's been made so popular by Ali E. (cause I did one of those last year), I'm making a "30 days of Giving" journal with all my yummy Fall papers and product. ;) So stayed tuned. I'll be sharing that with ya soon. ;)

So, anybody wanna join me in this challenge? I'd love to compare notes (or notebooks)!

Oh and Halloween recap coming soon. Still editing pics!

Happy Nov. 1st!