Sunday, December 28, 2008

a year in review

I completed my 8 on the 8th album. It was a fun project and one I plan to do each year. If I only do one thing each year, this will be enough. Im really happy with it.
I also want to thank Irene for playing along with me this year. It really helped to have someone else to keep me moving and on track. Im really excited more want to join in for the 2009 go round too. I cant wait to get started.
Here's my year in review...you may have to click on the link at the bottom. I cant figure out how to embed the slideshow into the post. I had it working once, but now it doesnt. Anyone know what Im doing wrong?
ETA- figured it out...I needed to download a newer version of Adobe flash.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

time to go home

Today we're sending Jennifer back home after three days with us for Christmas. It seems to get more and more sad each time we send her home.
I've really loved having her here during the holiday so I guess I'll have to be thankful that she made it, even with the worst snowstorm in the past 10 years.
Macie has become attached to her too, and seems to feel that she's leaving again.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

santa claus is coming to town...

n.o.t.h.i.n.g beats the excitement of a 4 year old two days from Christmas.
The cutest part is that for the first time, Ethan is learning songs. And he sings them loudly.
He knows some part of Jingle bells, Santa Claus is coming to town, Rudolf, and frosty the snowman. Sometime they all get jumbled together into one big christmas song.

Its the most wonderful time ... that is as long as Santa brings him an Optomus Prime :-)
Its the only thing he's asked for. Thankfully Santa found one

Monday, December 22, 2008

walking in a winter wonderland

after being locked in the house for a few days during a freak winter snowstorm, Paul and I took an early morning walk in the park around the corner from our house yesterday.
With more snow on the way, this was probably our only chance to get out here.
By afternoon, the kids had been sledding on the little hills and more than another 10 inches of snow had fallen, so Im glad we took this chance to have the park all to ourselves.

The little lake is almost frozen over, just a few touches left to freeze. The lake starts where the little tuft of grass shows in the bottom left corner of this picture, and goes to the treeline. There is a walking path all the way around, and this is the ramp down to the little fishing dock where the kids fish all summer long. Strange how one little stripe in the lake is unfrozen.





I think we're certain to have a white Christmas this year, which is so unusual for us.
Its so beautiful, as long as I don't have to drive in it...but I can see where after awhile it would get to be a pain. Right now we'll just enjoy it, and hope it all melts away in a day or two.

Friday, December 19, 2008

snowing

Watching Maci in the snow, pouncing on snowflakes had me laughing all afternoon. She loves it.

I make a snowball and roll it across the lawn and she chases it and pounces on it, thinking its a ball. But then she was so confused when she couldn't find the ball in the snow.

or she'd pick it up and it would fall apart in her mouth.
Finally she learned to be very careful with them as she picked them up.





Snow is the best fun!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Macie the red nosed Shih tzu

What can I say?
Couldnt resist this raindeer coat in the Target dollar spot the other day. It even has jingle bells on it :-)

She actually doesnt hate it, much ... as long as I leave the hat part down.

Because it keeps covering her eyes and she cant see....its kinda mean to watch her walk around bumping into things. But not enough to make us stop. I think she's getting use to us doing this to her now because she just sits really still now when she sees me getting ready to put something on her, as if to say ... get on with it, have your fun, hurry up!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunday, December 14, 2008

decorating the nest part 2

I've had the tree up for a week or so now, but still dont have an ornament added to it.
A few years ago we got this slim artifical tree because our old tree took up half the room.
But the slim one really needs some fluffing to it to make it look better.
I start by adding some floral picks, this year I got a bunch with berries and apples from Michaels for about $1.50 each. Then I added some bows...and lastly, snow.
I get a bag of fiberfill and pull off small chunks. Lay the "snow" over the top of some of the branches, just on the tip of the branch.

The object is that you want it to look like snow does in nature, just on some branches.

Its kinda fun.

So far I dont have any ornaments on the tree, and I may just leave it like this. Easy to put up, and easy to take down :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

my first (completed) knitting project

cfinally finished!
Not exactly my first, I have made washcloths and scarfs, but this was my first harder project.

My Mom taught me to knit socks...the old school way with 4 double pointed needles.

I know there are probably faster and easier ways...toe up, two at a time...but this is the only way she'll knit them. Lets just say she's a little stubburn. When I completed the first sock I told her it was a drag to have to start over from the beginning again...wouldnt it be easier to knit them two at a time? No she says, it takes the same amount of time. Just keep going, one at a time, four needles, from the cuff down. Thats how you do it....
Truthfully, the way I do it is I go to Macy's, but just in case I wanted to spend two months and $17.00 for a pair of socks, I guess one at a time, four needles, from the cuff down is how I'd do it.
Mom knits a few pairs of socks every week and sells them at her fiber club sales.

She really really really really loves to knit socks and she wanted to teach me and I love that she taught me. I could have taken a class, but it feels good to know that I learned to knit socks from her. I love that I learned how to make biscotti and gnocchi from my grandma. Those are some of my favorite memories while she was teaching me to cook. Some things are more special knowing when they were taught to you by your Mom or your grandmother.

Funny story about Moms socks... For mothers day I got her some really nice sock yarn like the yarn that I used in this pair that I made. It was about $17.00 for enough to knit a pair of socks. I got her three different color ways. She knit them all of course. Raved about how beautiful they came out and how nice the yarn was to work with...then somehow, she got one pair of them mixed up with the ones she knits and sells through her fiber club.

She accidently mixed up the tags that she put on the sock and the price tag looked like $7.00.She wasnt at the register when some lady came up to purchase them so she didnt catch the error. So not only did she sell the socks she made with my beautiful yarn, she sold them for only $7.
She felt horrible about it and I laughed. I told her thats why I always go to Macy's :-)

Guess what she's getting from me for Christmas? Sock yarn.
She loves it, it makes her happy to knit...and thats all that matters to me.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Im sorry to tell you that if you sent me a Christmas Card last year

I've cut it up.

and decorated tree branches with them.
Martha Stewart posted this idea on her website and I thought it would be a fun way to display all those cards and pictures from past years. I never know quite what to do with them, so this way I get to enjoy them season after season....do you see yours here?
I cut several branches from a tree in the back yard...it needed pruning anyway. Then I picked up one of those foam blocks used for flower arrangements. The ones I had were in the shape of a can of green beans, so that's where I put it. A little glue from the trusty hot glue gun in the bottom of the can, shove the foam in there and I was set. I put the can in a large square vase, surrounded it with some holiday potpourri then went to work shoving my branches in. I went to work cutting up your cute Christmas cards. I punched holes in the too, sorry about that :)
Threading ribbon, buttons and bows, wire and beads to each one, I hung them on the tree.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

you know those times when

only a chocolate chip cookie will do
and you want one right now
and you dont want to make a mess in the kitchen
or wait a half hour to get one?

That is why I always keep some of this stuff in the frig.
This huge tub is a little over $7.00 at costco.
What a deal.
So I can have one of these, or a few dozen of them, when ever I want.
and I dont have to clean up the mess.
Now thats what I call priceless.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

gameday pictures

Paul and I went to our first Seahawks game this past weekend in the new Qwest field.
What a beautiful stadium, the best of everything...I guess that's what Paul Allen's money can buy.

We expected it to be cold, and thankfully it turned out to be not as bad as we had expected. It was clear, so no rain was a plus.
The view of the Olympic mountains with some new snow on them from the inside of the stadium is so pretty, even if your looking at the ugly port.

P-Dub, armed with hot lattes and pretzels with nacho cheese


And me, bundled like Im going to the north pole. I cant tell you how many layers I had on.


The entrance to the stadium
and the view from our nosebleed section seats. We were like 20 rows down from the top row...geez. Way to work off those nacho cheese pretzels just walking up the stairs.
This place explodes with noise when the 12th man kicks in. Seattle fans are known for being extremely loud whenever the other team is on offense. Its crazy, but a lot of fun.

We left before the game was over so the stands were still packed. Four minutes left in the game and the score was tied. Minutes after I snapped this picture, Seattle fumbled the ball and the Redskins recovered and scored...game over.

But, all in all a rather fun day. We sat in a section that was generally mellow, but fun enough to give high fives at every great Seahawk moment. Not too much beer consumed so everyone was behaving themselves. Too bad we didnt win, but at least we didnt get blown out.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

decorating the nest

Im ready to skip right past Thanksgiving and go straight for the Christmas decorations.
The other day I walked around the back yard and snipped as many different kinds of greens as I could find.

I have several wire wreath forms so I thought I'd get my wire and snips out and make a wreath. But instead I just made a arrangement for the dining room table out of them and hung my artifical wreaths on the door. Greens stay fresh for a long time, so this arrangement should last several weeks. I may even add a few flowers. As I was getting out the wreaths for the door, I came across this string of lights I got from Ikea last year. Its about as wide a half the slidding glass door and hangs from the top of the door to about a foot above the floor.
I hung it under the valance and centered it in the window. It loos so pretty when the sheers are closed over it. Im going to pick up a few more of these Star light strings next week if they have them this year. I'd like to put them in all of the upstairs windows too.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

29 things

Today he would have been 29 years old.
Remembering him today on his birthday, here are 29 things I remember and loved about Justin

1) Your sense of humor. You were always the clown of the group and the life of the party.
2) Your smile. Always there… even when you didn't feel much like smiling. It wasn't always a good thing.
3) Your hilarious take on your family members...you called them the degenerates
4) Being the fearless brother to Jaryn, ready to defend her from anyone or anything
5) You were a dreamer
6) You thought you could play the guitar and you worked hard at it, but I never heard you play a song I could recognize
7) Kaylee was your pride and joy and you would have been a great father
8) Your skinny legs and shoulders... You hated being slender. Growing up you were always drinking weight gainer drinks to try and put on weight
9) Sunshine bear
10) Extreme anything…work & play. You never liked the mundane.
11) You loved to fish, hunt and go camping
12) You liked to wear button up shirts and ironed them yourself.
13) You were on the football team in high school, but rarely played on game days
14) You loved to play baseball or just toss the ball and play catch with Dad
15) You teased Jaryn and Jennifer constantly
16) How Dad scared you with campfire stories of John J. Fishhook
17) You finally got that Harley
18) Flirting with all Jennifer’s friends when they’d call the house. It made her so mad.
19) The way you’d cock your jaw sideways when you were thinking
20) You were a poser…It was so funny to watch you and we always teased you that you were worse than the girls.
21) Your stories. You always had a funny story to share, even when you were in the hospital.
22) Your temper. Along with the sense of humor came the temper.
23) Those flashes of your Dad in your facial expressions and mannerisms.
24) That time Dad snuck up on you and Nick and we heard you whisper to ask if he was a Martian
25) Your love of the Army and how proud you were of being a soldier
26) You always wanted a "muscle car"
27) That little scar on your eyebrow
28) How proud you were when you and Natalie bought your first house
29) Your faith in God

We love you Justin. Happy Birthday

Saturday, November 15, 2008

taking advantage of a warm fall afternoon

Looking back over my pictures from years past, I noticed that we've often received a small snowfall by late November. With the weather we had today though, you'd never guess that we're already half way through November. It was tee shirt weather, and we decided it was a great day to take Macie and go on a hike.
So after lunch we headed out to see what we could find.


Theres a mountain nearby called Mount Si, that many hikers use as a training hike before hiking Mount Rainier. We took a drive there and headed up the trail. Before long we'd wished we'd worn shorts even though the trail cuts through some beautiful shaded forest...Moss covered trees and giant ferns everywhere.





We didn't go far, nowhere near the full length of the trail. Unfortunately we both need better hiking shoes, and we forgot to bring water with us...We plan on going back soon though.
A great way to spend the afternoon though.