Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Brooklyn's First Pumpkin Patch Visit

It just hit me that since we're fixin' to head over to the baby's house for Halloween that I better post some pictures from our Pumpkin Patch visit last Sunday! Y'all know that I'll have just a few pictures of Brooklyn in her costume by the end of the evening. :)

Awesome, awesome Pumpkin Patch with many things for kids to do and places to have photos taken. I took scads of pictures and while I have some great ones of Brooklyn I just was really touched by this picture. We had her propped up by the Care Bears and I love how you can see her daddy and grandpa so close to her and ready to assist if she needs it. This little girl has a tremendous amount of love surrounding her.

Of course I want to include a picture of the happy family. See how beautifully blue the sky is? We had a picture perfect day and enjoyed every minute of it. Brooklyn, well really Loni, is holding an itty bitty pumpkin that Grandma insist she have in the pictures, much to the amusement of the rest of my family!

We did even ride the hay ride (ok, really a trailer behind a tractor) and Brooklyn didn't seem all that impressed. Problem we had is that she is so fair skinned and the sun was pretty warm, so Loni and I spent most of our time worrying about keeping her out of the sun. But now Brooklyn will be able to tell all her friends about the hayride!

And now we're off to have dinner and hand out candy to the Trick or Treaters! Of course Superman Joe will be there in all his glory to let all the kids pet him. :)

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Cake Decorating

Final class was tonight and I have my certificate of completion for the Wilton Cake Decorating Course 1. This has to be the most fun class I've taken in a long time.

I missed last week's class since I was in Atlanta, but jumped right in tonight and with the teacher's help got pretty well caught up.

This cake was not without its problems though. I baked it and iced it last night, then made my various icings to take to class for the decorating. This morning as we were walking out the door Keith said "Did you notice your cake this morning?" Now with a sentence like that I knew it wasn't going to be good!!! My beautifully iced white cake had developed a big crack in the top in the shape of a Y! I decided to consider it a training opportunity, so just let it be and took it to class. The teacher and I had a good chuckle over it and she did give me some pointers.

Moving on - we made the roses first and set them aside. Things went well when I was transferring them to the cake, up until one of them decided to jump off the spatula and roll down the cake, ending upside down. When this sort of thing happens you sit stunned for a few seconds, then there is nothing to do but laugh! Next thing I know we were all laughing! I rolled the poor little rose back over and kind of nudged it into place, then just added a few more leaves around it. :)

We had such a grand time that we've signed up for Course 2. And for once I was able to put some things into perspective and just relax and enjoy the class and the fellowship. I have no plans at all to do this sort of thing for money or entries in the fair. I'm wanting to make cute cakes for a certain little princess in my life and I'm willing to bet that she'll enjoy what her grandma makes for her.

<-- Gratuitous Brooklyn Picture

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

First Annual Girls Weekend!!!

And this past weekend was our first annual Girls Weekend Away! Actually it was the second annual US80 Garage Sale weekend for us, but this year we decided to expand it a bit. Lynne', Loni, Brooklyn and I left bright and early Saturday morning and headed east.

Last year there were more sales and we bought many more treasures, but this year the garage sales were mostly a bust and in fact Lynne' and Loni didn't buy a thing! However, we had many more fun things planned and the most important thing was the being together.

In addition to the garage sales I loaded up the gps and we did a little geocaching along the way. The first picture shows Lynne' holding one of the finds. That girl is so good and always finds them! And I'm sure you can see also just what a beautiful day it was outside.

The next picture shows how Loni and Brooklyn enjoyed the geocaching! Baby girls really enjoy their bottles and especially seem to enjoy them when sitting outside on a beautiful day with their mama. :)

Next we stopped at a Veterans Memorial Park that we saw while on our way to a cache. It was in the middle of a very small town and the park was so touching. Brooklyn decided to nap, so Loni stayed with her while Lynne' and I walked around. They had a wall with names engraved of fallen soldiers from the surrounding area, I believe beginning with WWI. It was a sobering, yet beautiful park and I was glad we stumbled on it in our travels.

At the end of the day we checked into our hotel and stretched out a bit. Loni had found us a hotel with an indoor pool, so we all headed downstairs with Brooklyn in her Little Swimmers. She was SO CUTE! We took turns holding her in the pool and she kind of leaned back against our chest looking at the other two. She was a little unsure at first, then Loni started splashing and I really think it was a lightbulb moment for Brooklyn. She started splashing and kicking and her eyes would get really big and she would grin! So adorable!!! She still doesn't have a lot of control with the splashing, but invariably she'd splash her Aunt Lynne' and we'd all laugh, so she'd grin real big again. Good times. :)

After swimming it was time for baby girls to have a bath and get all the chlorine off their skin. We were blessed with a good sized sink in our room, so that became Brooklyn's tub for the night.

We got her dressed and headed off for dinner. When we finally got back to the hotel it was time for bed and we discovered that baby girls get silly hair after bathing in the sink and wearing a beanie
out to eat! It didn't seem to bother her one bit though and she was out like a light. Such a precious little girl.

Our last stop was another accidental find. On the way back home we stopped at a rest area and saw a sign pointing to a nature trail. Unfortunately it was a dirt trail, which would've meant the stroller would need 4 wheel drive, so we decided not to walk. But on the way out of the rest area the girls spotted some animals out behind, so we pulled over and got out to explore. Turns out there was a wildlife refuge behind the rest area, how cool is that??? Very beautiful to see.

And you can see how excited Brooklyn was over
the whole thing. We decided she was far more entranced by the little duck toy hanging from her carrier than she was by the animals in the refuge. :)

Atlanta Trip and Lynne's Birthday

S.L.O.W.L.Y. coming down from a very whirlwind week. Last week I went to Atlanta for business for the first time. I had a presentation to make and I'm here to tell you I was scared to death over it! To the point that my stomach was terribly upset. Turned out fine, other than during the presentation my mouth was dry as a desert and my tongue would stick to the roof of my mouth while I was talking - LOL!

The fun part was the ride back to the airport when all was said and done. I sat in the backseat and sent and received text messages from family and friends. My reply when they would ask how it went? "I nailed it...and I didn't throw up!" :) It makes me feel so good to have so much support.

And then when I got back to the DFW airport and got out to the front part of the airport, there stood Keith holding a long red rose! I just about melted when I saw that. He missed me - isn't that sweet? And he also knew just how nervous I was about this whole trip. We walked out to our car and he said "Since you loved that rose so much I figure you'll probably love this too" and pulled out the rest of the dozen roses - WOW! I got them trimmed and in the vase and then remembered later to take a picture. They are just so beautiful.


Friday was Lynne's 22nd birthday! We all went to Outback for dinner (her choice) and this was the first time Miss Brooklyn joined us for a birthday celebration. This picture was taken on the restaurant porch while we were waiting to be seated. Such beautiful fall weather and it was kind of fun sitting out there enjoying it before dinner.

I love this picture so much. It's kind of a circle of life sort of thing to see my baby girl holding the new baby girl. Honestly I tear up looking at it and I get warm fuzzies inside.

God is so good. It is wonderful to have my family all together and happy. And to talk to Lynne' recently about a problem she was having and hearing her tell me she had been praying for guidance. ~ sigh ~ Makes this mama very, very happy.

The really lucky people do not necessarily have the best of everything; They are the ones who make the most of whatever life throws at them.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Poor Baby Girl...

I was so sad to see little Brooklyn yesterday - she is sick. You can kind of tell in the picture how she just doesn't feel good. Keith did give me a hard time for wanting a picture of her when she's not feeling good. But really I just like pictures every time I'm with her, not a picture just because she's sick.

She sat with us while we watched the Cowboys game, though even if she were well I don't really think she would've been all that impressed. I did manage to get a couple of grins out of her - she's a happy baby even when she doesn't feel well.
Busy, busy times with me for a bit. We shopped all day Saturday looking for new clothes for me for a work trip to Atlanta this week. I feel very ungrateful saying this, but the shopping wasn't that much fun. Since it was for me I feel like I should have been jumping up and down over it, but it was tiring and when you have a time limit and know what you have to find it just kind of takes a little of the fun out of it. However, Lynne' joined us the last half of the day and any time I have my husband and daughter together they make me laugh. That was fun. :)
Keith has started redoing the floors in the kitchen and dining room, so for the time being we have concrete floor in most of the kitchen. The funniest part of this is that my cat really fears change, so he refuses to walk in the kitchen now. He stands at the doorway and just meows piteously. Poor baby.
Did I share about my wardrobe m@lfunction last week? One of my workmates - thankfully a friendly one that I like (!) - was standing in my cube talking to me and tilted her head at me, looking a bit puzzled. She lifted my hair before I could say a word and then leaned down and whispered that my sweater was on inside out! Well I couldn't help but laugh, then headed to the restroom to right the wrong. And the funniest part of it all is that the day before this same girl had sent a quote to us in our email "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused." Does everybody see the humor here? The very day after receiving this quote I laughed at myself enough to bust a gut! :)

Friday, October 12, 2007

WW Chicken Pot Pies

I do realize that some of you might see that this recipe is a Weight Watcher recipe and it might scare you away. I am here to tell you it shouldn't cause it is GOOD!

WW Chicken Pot Pies

½ cup reduced fat cream of chicken soup
1 cup chicken, cooked and diced
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables (I thawed mine I smidge)
2 T fat free chicken broth
2 biscuits (beware – this is where it could get bad) (I used reduced fat Grands)

Mix together the soup, chicken, vegetables and broth. Divide the mixture into two 2 cup casserole dishes. Mash down a biscuit as flat as you can get it and spread on top – one biscuit on each dish. Bake as directed on biscuit package.

*** Mine was 16 points for both, so only 8 points each person. We had a salad with it for 1 point (the dressing) and that made a pretty low point dinner. Be warned – these are not large pot pies. We were delighted with how filling they were though and you can always have a WW 1 point ice cream bar later for snack. And I’m going to keep searching for lower point biscuits.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

First Cake Decorating Class

I realized today that I never blogged about my first cake decorating class! Thankfully J had her camera and actually USED it, while mine was nestled in my bag (note to self - it doesn't do any good to bring the camera and not use it!!!).

As you can see by the picture, I tend to play and have a good time everywhere I go. I'm holding the decorating bags that we made out of parchment paper here - and wadded them up shortly after the Kodak moment. NOT impressed with them and have since bought a box of plastic disposable ALREADY ASSEMBLED bags. :)

Our first class was really just a lecture class and we watched the teacher decorate this cake. It took her no time at all and I'm so impressed and excited over this whole thing! I've already learned so many icing tips that I know I have my money's worth and we still have 3 classes to go.

You can also tell by the first picture that it really doesn't matter to me what hobby I'm doing as long as I'm doing it with people I enjoy. Really the hobbies are pretty much just an excuse to get together with people - it's the fellowshipping that makes me happy. :)

Oh and we ate at Applebees prior to class and ordered off their Weight Watchers menu - including dessert! Oh my it was so good. And so nice to just order and know it will be ok and not have to do much thinking. When I win the lottery I'm eating all my meals at Applebees. ;)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

WSC22 Card

I wanted to make a card to send to my grandmother, who is still in the hospital. Since I want it to be cheerful I opted for bright colors. It's also time for another one of Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenges, so that's what I used for this card.

I'm thrilled with how it came out! I think this sketch lends itself to so many different ideas and is sure to become a standby for me.

And this is my one nod to Saturday's World Card Making Day. I had great intentions, but a busy day got in the way. That's ok though because at least I got one done!!!

Stampin Up Little Hellos stamp; Stickles, a blue and clear

Fall is in the Air!

Finally! This morning is so beautiful - cool and crisp. I honestly think I was starting to wonder if it would ever happen. We had a very mild start to the summer, but the warm muggy weather hit and didn't want to leave. Thank goodness it must have changed its mind. :)

I've pulled some of my fall decorations out and even made a stop at Joann's to pick up some new things. I think these little scarecrows are just darling and they are hanging out in the dining room with their little legs a danglin'. I kind of think they look a lot like Keith and I. :)

In the background of the girl scarecrow you can see one of my favorite tea cups. I truly adore tea cups and have several hanging out on this hutch - they make me smile every time I look at them. This one was a Christmas gift from my friend J last year, along with the most awesome tea cup story she had printed out. I really like how the fall colors and leaves on the cup work so well with the scarecrows.

I still have a few more things to put out and I need to get some things for the front porch. I'm really looking forward again to sitting outside and enjoying the world go by in front of my house.

Summer ends, and Autumn comes, and he who would have it otherwise would have high tide always and a full moon every night. - Hal Borland

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Geocaching Sunday

Today we spent the afternoon and evening geocaching with J&L and of course Brooklyn. She really wasn't all that impressed with the whole geocaching deal, but that's ok because she is just so adorable no matter what she is doing. We went to a park that had fabulous sidewalks, so while the rest of the family searched for hidden treasures I just sat and looked at this sweet girl and took pictures of her....a BUNCH of pictures!

And really isn't there something amazing and calming about a picture of a sleeping baby?

It didn't take her long though to finish the cat nap and then do some Grandma entertaining. She laughed, she coo'ed, she goo'ed and through it all I just kept telling her how precious she is and how much Grandma loves her. This is really a fun age. I'm betting though that I'll think they all are a fun age! :)

A garden of Love grows in a Grandmother's heart. - Unknown

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Happy Saturday!

This beautiful scene is what met me this morning when I arrived at J&L's house. This little girl is just too precious for words! And notice those cutey little Robeez shoes she has on from her great-aunt Michele!

Loni, Brooklyn and I went to garage sales this morning and had such a nice time. One of my favorite moments came when I was pushing the stroller and an older gentleman offered me 2 vcr movies if he could keep Brooklyn! He was so sweet and just laughed when I told him I thought I might want to keep my granddaughter. :) We chatted for a bit and he told me his grandkids had all just moved to Oregon and he missed them terribly. Bless his heart, I just can't imagine.

I was shocked to see how long it's been since I updated my blog. One of the biggest reasons has been work - I've been b.u.s.y.!!!! And it was finally announced yesterday, so I figure that means it's okay for me to post here - I've received a big promotion! Not sure it's totally sunk in yet, but exciting just the same. Now that means I get to go shopping for a whole new wardrobe!!!

And that leads to exciting news #2 - I've joined Weight Watchers! When I went to OKC recently with my cousin M she was telling me how wonderful the program is and she has done very, very well. Then a gal I work with found a nearby meeting and asked if I wanted to go with her. I did, we joined and at my 2nd weigh-in last week I discovered that I had lost 3.8 pounds my first week! VERY exciting! A bunch of my friends are also doing WW, so I think the support system of family, friends and work friends has helped tremendously. All this means my new wardrobe just might be a big smaller than what I used to wear. Happiness!

One last note - notice the pink breast cancer site logo over in the right margin. Please click on this every time you visit my blog, then click the pink "click here" button on the next page that comes up. Sponsors donate money to breast cancer research for every click and you can click every day. Such a very simple thing to do for such a worthwhile cause.

Indecision may or may not be my problem. - Jimmy Buffett