Monday, December 30, 2013

5 Days of Christmas

Is it really already December 30??? I'm going to blink and it will be 2014. Might as well say 'Goodbye' to 2013. Goodbye, 2013! Guess that means I need to hurry up and write about my Christmas holiday before it becomes old news.
Old in the sense that we are almost in a new month.
A new year.
Matt and I spent Christmas in TN with our families. I arrived the Friday before Christmas after spending all day at work and we left Christmas Day since I had to be back at work on Thursday. I can assure you I would have preferred to stay home. In bed. Where I left Matt and Wyatt. Still sleeping. Not thinking at all about me who had to get up and leave the house before daylight even broke through the sky.
Not. Fair.
Just saying.
At this point (5 days after Christmas), I don’t remember exactly what I did on each day.
I do remember my mom and I went and did another painting at Uptown Art. I'll let my picture of my new painting speak for me:
 My finished product is in the right corner and my mom's is in the left bottom corner.
The giraffe painting I won! I had wanted to paint it - winning it was even better!
We have both decided this will be our last one for awhile. This is an expensive hobby and my wallet needs a break. I have painted 3 in the past month. I have changed out a few throughout my house, but I have 4 that still need a spot. I need to remedy this ASAP.
Prior to Christmas, my mom and I made three different kinds of cookies and some chocolate candies.
Again, enjoy my picture:
All were a hit with everyone who was given them.
My favorites were the turtles. Such a simple 'cookie', but oh so yummy!
Christmas Eve we celebrated with Matt's family. His mom made a turkey dinner and then we exchanged presents.
Her tree after I re-organized the presents:
Christmas Day we celebrated with my family. We opened presents and then my mom made us a ham lunch.
My mom's tree a few days prior and then the day of Christmas:
 Weird lightening
2013 Christmas has come and gone and these are the only pictures I took. What is wrong with me???
For Christmas, I got my first 'real' camera. Matt and I both picked out our own present this year since we both wanted an expensive item. My camera is a Canon Rebel t3i. I did so much research and hunting for the best price. I thought I screwed up when I missed a good sale at Best Buy when they sold out online, but 2 days later I got it for even cheaper!
I am proud of myself!
Too bad all I have done so far is charge the battery. I haven’t played with it at all. I think I am a little intimidated by it. Rest assure I will 'suck it up' and start playing with it. I have too much to learn for it to just be sitting there.
I want to share 2 more pictures with you -
Saw this on the news in TN and had to look it up:
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!
I thought it was real at first! What a goober I am!
This is the wreath I made at the beginning of the month:
I never blogged about it because I am not happy with it. Maybe red garland would look better? I'll make it better next year.
And there you have it.... Christmas celebrated over 5 days.... all in one post.
Picture it wrapped in a box inside sparkly red wrapping paper with a bow on it. Now consider it a gift to you, from me.
Awe..... I am so sweet to think of a gift for you. LOL!!!!!!!!!

Friday, December 20, 2013

I Saw Santa Claus!!!

Last year, I saw Santa drive by my house on a fire truck and no one (at last not Matt) believed me!!!
This year, I have proof!
Exhibit A:
It's Santa!
The big guy in the red suit!
On a fire truck!
Waving to everyone!
I saw the red and blue lights... luckily was already in my car... got off the phone and turned around to get behind him so I could snap a few pictures with my phone.
I took some of him waving, but they didn't come out very good. Sadly.
Exhibit B:
Doesn't matter though. I have my proof either way!
Just as I was typing this, I heard the sirens. Took a few more pictures with my phone.... wish I had my real camera handy. I went out there in a shirt and underwear. Ha ha ha! So very glad I was able to hide in the dark and no one saw me! (None of those pictures turned out.)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Scarf of the Loom

It isn't a blanket (see 30 before 30), but I actually finished something I began knitting!
Don't worry, I will make a blanket one day soon. Probably with this method though. Crocheting wasn't as easy to me. Maybe knitting on a loom will help me learn to knit without the loom and to crochet. I did use a crochet hook with the end binding. That's a start.
Last weekend while visiting with Matt's family, his sister was knitting a scarf on a loom. I kept watching her and asking her questions and she asked if I wanted one for Christmas. I said 'yes'. So she bought me the Martha Stewart loom kit and allowed me to use one piece of it and showed me how to make a scarf. (The rest of it is being wrapped and placed under the tree.) She had taught herself the week prior by watching YouTube videos and thought it would be easy enough to teach me. Which it was. Although, I now know we did it a little bit wrong. That's okay - I'm still happy with my end result.
I worked on it last Saturday for, I think, 4 or 5 episodes of The Big Bang Theory. In case you don't know, TBS does a marathon of the show every Saturday night. And I HEART Sheldon Cooper! Therefore, I was more than willing to watch him on TV. Just like I do almost every Saturday night. I would have worked on it even longer, but I had ran out of yarn. Matt and I went and bought another skein of yarn and the other night I finished it. Maybe another hour spent on it. I think. I didn’t really keep track of time. I was a little distracted by Home Alone 2 on AMC.
It's no Home Alone 1, but it is close and still cute. Just not my favorite Christmas movie of all time. As I already told you, that spot is reserved for the first Home Alone. The movie I have watched AT LEAST two times every Christmas since its release date.
I could probably recite every line to you right now.
I have gotten distracted thinking about Home Alone.
Let me get back to the topic at hand....
As you can see, the left side is where I started. My yarn was a lot bit looser in the beginning and the first area of the scarf isn't as neat looking as my end binding on the right. Along with my sister-in-law's directions, I found a wonderful website that shows YouTube video tutorials on everything I need to know. There are about 30 and I have already watched at least 15 of them.
The scarf I start and maybe finish this weekend will look even better. I'm positive. I plan on doing this same stitch - figure eights - again and then I will move onto another stitch. :)

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

DIY Snowman Soup

Sometimes I can be crafty.
Yep. Me. Crafty. Sometimes.
I actually made something off Pinterest.
Yes. Me. Pinterest.
Very proud of myself!
I wanted to make my co-workers a Christmas crafty item to give out along with my Christmas cards so I looked all over Pinterest for something easy enough to make in one night. I didn't want to invest very much money either.
I found the most perfect thing - Snowman Soup! Have you seen it? It has the sweetest poem.
There are several different poems floating around online and some bloggers even already have a template for you to print. I attempted to make my own, but honestly, I didn’t feel like being bothered by it. Perhaps next year. Thankfully I found this wonderful blog where she posted her template to her labels.
Before staring, I went to Kroger and gathered all the ingredients I didn't have on hand - zip lock bags, hot chocolate, marshmallows, chocolate chips and candy canes.
On light blue paper (I thought it would look nicer then white), I printed the labels in color. I then carefully cut them out with my handy dandy paper cutter (Christmas present from Matt last year) and glued the labels to index cards to make them more durable. I punched a hole into the labels and the baggies in order to tie them together.
All while watching Home Alone (the best Christmas movie EVER!) on AMC.
I am very happy with how they turned out!
If I make them again, I will go to Hobby Lobby and buy the craft bags that are rectangular shaped. The sandwich bags were a bit too big.
Aren't they cute???

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Gingerbread Boy & Girl Painting

Check out this awesome tree at my library:
It's a book tree!!!
How stinking cute is that? When my librarian pointed it out, I told her I HAD to take a picture of it!
I wonder where they came up with the idea??? Possibly online. Or maybe someone thought of it on there own. Several of the people who work at my local library are very creative.
This weekend my sister-in-law and I went to another painting class. (My mom was suppose to come, but instead she got the flu and had to stay home. No worries - I have another class in mind for another week.)
This one was of a gingerbread couple.
Side note:
It's true what they say - bad review are more discussed then good ones....
Over Thanksgiving week, I signed us up for Saturday at 2PM.... went online to the website on (this past) Friday and noticed the class started at 10AM and was now a mommy and me class. WHAT??? Of course it was 6AM when I saw this so I wrote myself a note to call them later. Before I called, I got a call from the owner claiming I must have booked this class with her husband (I booked with her) and that she just now saw I had a reservation. They changed the time of the class over a week ago to accommodate a private class. Long story short, it all worked out, but in the future, they need to make sure to call people in advance. Due to the time change, what if I was unable to come? I don't feel it was handled very well. They shouldn't be calling 24 hours prior to inform people about a time change.
I assume because this was a kid's class, the gingerbread people were drawn on our canvases prior to us arriving. I didn't mind not one little bit. Makes it a little easier for me when this is done. Doesn't upset any of my creative mojo.
The icing on the gingerbread people could be done however you wanted it to look. Which almost everyone did even though most used the same colors as the instructor (including me).
I wish I had done the icing on my heads a little higher up.
I love my gingerbread couple - it just looks like they are wearing helmets. LOL!
Cute huh?

If you look in the background of my last picture, you can see a few of the other ones in our class. Sadly, no group picture was taken. I would have liked to have seen all of them together though.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

I Bring Christmas Cheer

Sleigh bells ringing... are you listening???
Are you in the mood for CHRISTmas yet?
Sometimes I feel like I am and other times, not so much. Not sure why... all my CHRISTmas decorations are up and we have snow (and ice) on the ground outside my house. You would think those two facts alone would have me in the right mood. Maybe I need to start watching the many movies I have recorded on my DVR???
I love the decorations of CHRISTmas!
I would have done it the week after I got home from my cruise if Matt would have been willing to 'let' me. We I actually decorated the weekend before Thanksgiving since we were going to be out of town that week and Thanksgiving fell so late this year. I wanted to enjoy it as much as possible.
I did my tree somewhat the same as last year. 
Very happy with the outcome!
And yes, it is blocking the front door a bit. We hardly use the front door and when needed, I can squeeze through.
Do you see my Santa tree painting from last year? It needed to be near my tree.

Thanks to birthday money, I finally bought a small white CHRISTmas tree I have been wanting for years!
I wanted this tree to be patriotic.
After CHRISTmas, if I find what I am looking for, I will buy some more ornaments, a tree skirt and a topper.  For now, this works. (I am trying to not buy CHRISTmas decorations.)
I just noticed.... I took this picture before I removed the 'A' and 'B' tags. OOPS!

My present(s) are wrapped under the tree....
I don't have ANY presents wrapped yet!
A few years ago I found this glass box at Goodwill and never did anything with it. Last year I bought a battery operated string of lights and ribbon. This is what I made. Looks even better in person.

I decorated my bookshelf in the living room.
Even got rid of a whole bag of books I will never read again. I don't think I will get rid of anymore books since I will still read these ones again. I always take my books to the library for them to make a little money off them. They place them out on a bookshelf if they don’t want/need them and allow people to take what they want for any donation. I figure the library has saved me so much money I might as well help them out a bit.
 For the first time ever, I decorated my china cabinet.
Let's ignore the fact that the rest of the year this cabinet is mostly empty. I don't own any fancy dishes. I am in the slow process of buying old milky glass I find at thrift stores. I HEART this stuff! I have 12 pieces now. 4 are punch cups and need the big glass bowl to make it a set. I have my eyes searching. I refuse to pay a lot of money which makes this a slow process....

Another first this year is I am actually displaying my Elf on the Shelf.
I don't have any children and Matt wouldn't notice if I moved him everyday so I never bothered to put him out or read the book. Traditions I hope to do one day, but for now, I am happy to just have my nameless elf hanging out in my CHRISTmas tree. 
My home away from home, aka work, I decorated as well with some leftover items I had after decorating the house.
That is a tablecloth on my cubicle wall. Makes it seem much more colorful then the blah tan walls.

Check out me and 'Stan the stand up man'.
My friend Linda made him 18 years ago! She is very talented!

Now you've seen all my CHRISTmas stuff.
All my decorating was done with items I already own (except the white tree I bought for $17.50 after 30% off). I am too cheap to buy anything new. I am tempted. Boy am I tempted to buy a few new things. If the items I want are still there after Christmas, at 75%, I can buy them then. It was meant to be mine. On the other hand, I probably already have enough... :)

Monday, December 9, 2013

Wyatt November 2013

I cannot resist posting a few recent pictures of my cute little old man.
Before his haircut, I woke up to this (while at Matt's mom's house):
He ALWAYS sleeps left to right not up and down no matter how many times we move him during the night. It never fails! I am sure it is hard to tell, but he is taking up as much room left to right as I do. That's a lot of space for someone who weighs less than 10 pounds!
Here he is after his haircut begging for food:
 More begging for food:
What do you think of his sweater my mom bought him? I didn’t like it at first, but I think it has grown on me. My mom told me it was the least ugly of all the ones at Wal-Mart for $5. LOL! In her defense, it was cold and he did need it.
The next two are a bit older... he was looking for a spot to do his business and he almost fell in a ditch. These show how he played off almost falling. Ha ha ha!
And then, just the other day, I was in the bathtub taking a long luxurious, filled with bubbles bath....  when Matt came looking for Wyatt to give him a cookie... Good thing I had my phone with me...
Blurry and adorable!
Notice the cookie in the last picture? Hint - look at his back.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

DIY Charm Bracelet

A few weeks ago I went to another fun jewelry making class.
This one was super duper easy. Easier then any of the other ones I have made. Seriously.
Basically, we made a charm bracelet. We started with a piece of chain cut from a giant roll and added two jump rings and a bell.
This picture should be turned on it's side, but it won't stay rotated no matter what I try.
We only used pliers and a jewelry tool to assemble the bracelet. We all had them done within 30 minutes. The longest part was passing around the long roll of chain and measuring each other's wrists to cut the length we wanted.

The lady who taught our class told us about how she bought an old Monopoly game and used the pieces to make a beautiful charm bracelet. What a good idea! Now if I can just find me an old Monopoly game from a thrift store I'll be all set to make my very own.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

WAY late Thanksgiving Week

Yes, I am late posting this - as usual –don’t judge. :)
Matt and I had a wonderful week off from work last week (2 weeks ago now). I was sad I had to go back to work on Monday, but all good things must come to an end. Of course, I would have preferred to stay home and continue watching ‘The Walking Dead’. We watched all of season 3 over last weekend and watched all of the current season over the next 2 days. I am going to hate having to wait each week to see the new episodes. The new season doesn’t even start until mid February. Why must they make me wait??? Can’t they tell I am a bit addicted to the show??? Uggggg!!!
Last week (2 weeks ago) we went to Tennessee to visit our families for the Thanksgiving holiday. And so Matt could hunt. (No, deer shot yet = no yummy deer meat.)
Quick recap –
We drove down Friday evening. I don’t remember if we did anything this evening nor do I remember what we did Saturday. I’m sure we probably just hung around the house. It was too long ago to remember.
Sunday I went with my parents to a baby shower that was pirate themed. A bit odd, but whatever floats your boat I suppose. (In the future, when I have a baby shower, I want GIRL - light purple and light blue; BOY - blue and green ~~ giraffe and/or dog or jungle animal themed.)
I took a picture of the pretty cake:
Here, my parents caught up with relatives (and I met most of them for the first time – they are on G’s side of the family), we ate some snacky foods, played games and watched as gifts were opened. My mom's husband even won the game where you cut a piece of yarn and then whoever is the closest to the mom's to be stomach size wins.
I took pictures of two things I want to make for myself in the future when I start to have kids of my own (I already found directions online):
Not only was last week Thanksgiving, it was also my birthday week!
And before I tell you about my birthday week, I must show you the cake my co-worked/friend, Linda, made for me:
Isn’t it cute?
It was also very yummy. Red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting. You know, in case you were wondering.
Monday, I forget what I did.
Tuesday, Matt and I went to Nashville to enjoy the lights at the Opryland Hotel, walk the mall, eat dinner and then watch the Rockettes. This was what I wanted to do for my birthday.
I have been going to the Opryland Hotel for YEARS. Literally, YEARS. Growing up, my mom would take me and my brother to see the lights. I continued to go every year until I moved to Kentucky. This was my first time going in a few years, and I gotta say, I was a little disappointed. I feel like there used to be more lights. What happened to the lights that used to be strung across the Italian restaurant? They used to be colored lights and then it seems like they switched to white lights. I always liked those ones. Maybe they got ruined after the flood? If so, you would think they would buy some new ones.
I thought we would wander the hotel for a couple of hours, but we were done within one hour.
After the hotel, we headed to the mall to eat and shop.
Then the main attraction – Radio City Christmas Spectacular Starring the Rockettes.
I loved every minute of it!
My favorite scene was the Twelve Days of Christmas (they tapped out the days) and Matt’s favorite scene was the Parade of the Wooden Soldiers. We both really enjoyed the Living Nativity scene which looked like a picture until I noticed the sheep move. It was beautifully done.
A perfect night for the show.
The above picture is the only picture I took since you were not allowed to take pictures during the show. It took place at The Grand Ole Opry. This was my first time here and I was surprised to see the seating was in pews. Happily surprised. I think it made for more comfortable seating.
Wednesday, my sister-in-law and I painted another canvas at an art class. I’m not sure why owls are all of a sudden trendy, but we painted two in a wintery day scene.
What do you think?
I cut her out of the picture in case she doesn't want to be on my blog. And this is from my phone - not sure why is shows the extra 'stuff'.
I think they are adorable! My owl on the right needs to have his eyes fixed. He looks a bit creepy.
On my actual birthday, my mom had me and Matt over for lunch with my parents and my grandparents. Among other things, I got this candy bar from my mom from when they went to Hershey, PA.
Matt’s sister made me cake balls:
This was my first time ever having them. I liked them a lot.
Thursday, we enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner at my mom’s house with my parents and brother, my mom’s parents (aka grandma and grandpa) and Matt’s mom and sister.
I wish I had taken a picture of all the food.
Believe me when I tell you there was TONS!
Oops! Normally I am better about taking pictures on the holiday.