Showing posts with label december picture-a-day. Show all posts
Showing posts with label december picture-a-day. Show all posts

lots of christmas pictures

I just put together a slide show of my week of christmas goodness (posted below). Be sure to hit the forward button to fly through the pictures...there are lots of them, spanning the Harrington Christmas, the Bredberg Christmas at the farm, New Years and the Groves Christmas Stockings.

I'll write more specifics later but a few highlights would include: family, smurf houses, sledding, lots of niece and nephew time, dad's model trains, tutu's, Quiddler (Kristin, I bought it and Rory LOVES it!), the Gap outlet, good friends on New Years, more tutu's, Stumblebum and perhaps the most exciting...Rory's mom GOT ME A FOOD DEHYDRATOR!!! SHE DID!!! I am anticipating many a post detailing our dehydrating.

It was so good to be home, but we are feeling good back in Nebraska too. It was one year ago tonight we moved to this new state. As we drove back from Minnesota today we talked through how the year had treated us and agreed it was a great 2009. And we're ready for another great year ahead.

Making Lemonade from these lemons...

Well, we had wanted to leave for Minnesota on Tuesday so we could dodge this weather. But I got the flu that morning, and wasn't well enough to go home until Thursday. So yesterday we set out, all packed and ready, and made it a few miles before we saw a horrible accident where both cars had their entire fronts ripped off. It was horribly icy, and we just decided it wasn't worth the risk. The trees were covered in ice and looked like this:

Beautiful, but just not great for road conditions.

So we ended up celebrating Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in our apartment, watching the growing drifts outside, so thankful for our warm home. We missed all sorts of Groves family goodness, and this was really hard on me. The whole family called last night and I was on speakerphone and ended up pretty bummed because I have never really liked missing out. But Rory is wonderful and insisted that make sugar cookies, he made up a new card game, we watched Christmas movies and made a few homemade meals.

It was a snuggly Christmas. Rory mentioned many times that this will probably be the only Christmas in our lives together when he will get my undivided attention...and that this was the best gift he could have ever hoped for. (I am a bit distracted by nieces and nephews...)

And all in all, it was a really nice, calm and special Christmas. We made the homemade chicken noodle soup, and it blew our socks off. I don't even really like chicken noodle soup but wowza. This will be a part of our Christmas tradition forever.

And I made cherry jello with bananas. This is Christmas tradition for me, because my Uncle Don makes Fruit Soup every year...and basically fruit soup is just a fancy way to say prunes-and-other-brown-things-mushed-together Soup. So my mom always made the kids special jello molds that were shaped like trees, stars and bells with bananas in them. I didn't have the molds, but the jello was perfect for my flu tummy and my need for a taste of home.

We made Rolled Sugar Cookies that turned out glorious. Funny thing was that I don't have a great variety of cookie cutters here in Nebraska. Thankfully, I had gotten a gingerbread cutter at a little shop a few weeks ago, a candy cane at Lisa's cookies swap, and a porcupine, squirrel and bear at Betsy's wedding this summer. And honestly, nothing says Merry Christmas like a Christmas Porcupine. I am including this next picture to prove that I actually was happy and enjoying Christmas, though not in Minnesota!

And perhaps happiest with our change of plans was Toonces, who kept messing up our Settlers of Catan playing. This picture below makes the world outside look nice and still, but the wind is whipping out there, believe me. Our hope is to take off tomorrow...though I am learning to sit loose in the saddle. Merry Christmas everyone!

Unto us a child is born!

In the beginning was the Word. And the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. -John 1:1-5

Merry Christmas everyone!

thoughtful and kind

My grandma Bredberg's christmas card came today. It was a beautiful watercolor that she drew herself. And inside was this note. I just thought it summed up her thoughtfulness and generosity well. The Jago's adopted from Ghana a year ago, so their share of the money went to that orphanage. Pretty cool, grandma. And like Larry the Cucumber says, "Everybody needs a waterbuffalo. Some are fast and some are slow."

there and back again...

I drove to Minnesota on Saturday and back to Nebraska on Sunday. 12 hours of driving for 16 hours of Minnesota fun...only 8 of which I was awake for. Was this a crazy last minute idea? Yes. What it completely worth every single minute in the car there and back? Hello. Not even a doubt.

My nice Maddie was in her high school production of Annie. She was Lily, Rooster's ditsy girlfriend and she was amazing, stunning, hysterical and perfect in this role. On Thursday my parents saw the show and my mom called me Friday morning insisting that I come home to see her in this play. Dad was able to get us tickets, and at some point on Friday, we realized that Annika and her family would be in Minnesota after their 23 hour drive from Montana so she and Mara could come too.
Mara is an Annie fan like no other. She has every word memorized and was completely star struck that night. She was so excited to get her picture taken with Sandy. And her reaction to seeing Annie after the show was similar to how most kids react when they meet Cinderella at Disney World. She was in love.

I was so glad I made the trip...although soon after I hit the road, Rory started to feel ill, and by the time I was in Minnesota he had been hit with the 12-hour violent flu. And had no one to care for bummer. He's better now, but yowza. It hit him hard. Now we're just praying that I wasn't a carrier, bringing that lovely illness to Minnesota just in time for Christmas. I am praying hard.

Being with family and seeing them shine is such a joy. Jack, my nephew in middle school, mentioned that he just tried out for his spring musical, and even though it is only a "60-90 minute show, auntie Becca, I think you might like coming back for it too." Sounds like a great plan to me.

crafty christmas

These sweet snowmen are at my sistah Lisa's house. Made out of old socks and beans, each snowman represents one person in their family. So stinkin' cute.

A coworker of mine brought these in today. Her kids made them and she was boxing them up to send them to relatives out of state. They crack me up. And are pretty cute too. They're made out of pop bottles, styrofoam balls, googlie eyes, old socks for hats and fun foam.

Veggie Tree

We celebrated last night at the Carol Joy Holling Christmas party. The evening was lovely...good conversations all around. Plus, it was so fun to see who everyone is married to! I'm amazed by how much time you can spend with a co-worker, but not really know their home life at all.

This tree was on the buffet table. I hadn't ever seen anything like it and found it completely blog-worthy. The shrimp was also presented on a lettuce tree. Super festive and fun.

Christmas Cocoa

We stood in the checkout line at Walmart on Saturday afternoon for about 25 minutes. The place was a madhouse. But, lucky for me, Walmart had strategically placed peppermint stir sticks next to the magazines...a whole bag of peppermint sticks for 87 cents! So I threw them in my cart. And when Gina and Evalyn were over, I made us some chocolaty goodness.

The stirsticks are sort of a soft, quick dissolving candy, which makes them way better than a candy cane because the stick basically disappears by the time you're ready to drink your hot chocolate that is now delightfully minty. Seriously, it was one fabulous cup of hot chocolate.

snow day

We've got a blizzard here in Omaha, blowing strong and leaving us quite content to stay inside watching the growing snowdrift on our deck, illuminated by christmas lights. I have had a delightful day. Honestly, there is nothing like a snow day. To be given a surprise day off might just be the most delightful feeling in the world. I'm a planner, so even a Saturday or Sunday typically have some sort of agenda pre-planned for them. But not a snow day. A snow day is a surprise day ready to do all those projects that have been waiting for "a day to myself."

In honor of this snow day, I did the following:
1. Made a gingerbread house
2. Talked to my sister for a good while
3. Made supper in the crockpot
4. Took my blog entries from my other blog and transferred them to this blog
5. Watched a lot of hgtv

Number four on that list really is all thanks to my beloved, techy husband, Rory. He worked hard on this project today. And now, if you go to the side panel and look at the archives list, you'll see that my blog now begins in September of 2008, because that is when I began the other blog. But now the two have become one and I am so pleased to have all these thoughts and pictures and adventures gathered together in one place. Be sure to check out the October 2008 entries. Oh my word, did we see some beautiful places on that roadtrip last year!

an advent sucker tree.

A year ago I took my first Jessica Sprague class teaching me the basics of digital scrapbooking. That class empowered me in ways I never could imagine. There is something so thrilling about learning something completely new. I remember moments in that class when I would yell at my computer asking it boldly why it wouldn't do what I wanted it to do. But then, when I figured things out, and when I really was learning, I would hoot and holler at my computer while doing a happy dance, so proud of what I had learned.

This whole experience of trying and then trying again and then trying some more until I finally 'got it' has led me to other things that I want to try. Like sewing.

Last month there was a quilting retreat at Camp and I was inspired. There was a woman there named Mary, and we talked for a bit and she insisted that I borrow her Bernina machine sometime. I thought she was just being kind and generous. She was, but she was also very serious. So I borrowed her machine...but I couldn't remember how to thread a bobbin from my 7th grade home economics class. I called her to return the machine and as soon as she heard I hadn't sewed anything yet she invited me over to her house for a special lesson. She showed me how to load my bobbin and thread my machine and I went back home with her Bernina and a bit of sewing confidence.

The project I had in my head to sew was an advent sucker tree, counting down the days until Christmas. I had an advent sucker angel growing up, eating one sucker each day until Christmas. It was my own personal decoration and filling it up with suckers was my own special tradition each year.

I made my own pattern out of a grocery bag, cut my felt with kitchen scissors (I now have sewing scissors) and sewed the ribbon on, picking my foot up every once in a while to leave a gap to tuck the sucker in later. (How impressive is my use of "foot" back there?!! I'm learning sewing lingo!)

When I finished my tree I was so stinkin' proud! I called my mom immediately to tell her the happy news. And then I decided to make four more trees while home over thanksgiving so I could give one to each family in Rory and my families. I gave a tree to my niece Ruby when we were home over Thanksgiving. I told her, "Ruby, I have something for you." And she responded, "For me? For me?" "Yep. It's right here behind my back." She peeked and I announced, "It is a sucker tree for Christmas!" And she began jumping up and down, arms flailing, "FOR ME! FOR ME! IT'S FOR ME, MAMA!!!" I turned to her her mom and said, "This is why I learned how to sew."

And tonight I got a call from Mara and Sonna, my nieces in Montana who just got their tree in the mail today. I told them I sewed the tree myself and Mara asked, "with a machine?!!" And I was so proud to say, "Yep. With a machine. I just cut out the green fabric, sewed on the red ribbon, sewed it up like a pillow and stuffed it with fluff. And then I put suckers on it." Sonna then asked, "you make the suckers?" And I told her no. But it made me think, if I can sew, surely I can make a sucker. Add that one to the list.