Monday, December 29, 2008

It's over already?

There's just something a little melancholy about the week after Christmas. Taking down Christmas lights, packing up the ornaments, getting back into the day to day hustle and bustle...

I haven't had the heart to take our tree down quite yet. I usually like to leave it up until New Year's in an effort to keep the Christmas spirit alive a little longer. We're actually lucky that our tree made it through to the big day. Noah inadvertently knocked it over a couple times as he tried to give it a "hug". (Yes, he loved the tree THAT much!) Of course, there were also moments when he took his plastic golf club and started swinging at the ornaments. (Nice, huh?)

That being said, I may need to take the tree down a little earlier this year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Big Squeeze for Santa!

So my kiddos are just a little bit excited about Christmas...
Click to play A Big Squeeze for Santa!
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Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Once Upon a Christmas Time...(Fro & PSF combo)

Once upon a Christmas time, long ago, a young man with a skater-style haircut beckoned a young woman whom he had recently taken on a first date to help him decorate a Christmas tree. The young woman happily obliged as she had a teensy weensy crush on this young man.

They arrived at his humble abode (an old "trailer" that he shared with two roommates) fully equipped with spray-on snow, cheap glass bulbs from the local Wal-Mart, a few strands of lights, and some blue tinsel that the young man managed to find in his mother's attic.

Since the tree was only three and half feet tall, the ingenious young man and his buddies devised a way to suspend the tree from the ceiling, therefore eliminating the need for a tree stand. Due to the miniature nature of the tree, there were plenty of lights left over to string around a bicycle rim that the young man (a manager of a bike shop) had previously hung on the wall (with a red light bulb in the middle to add an extra touch of tackiness.)

The young man and young woman were so pleased with their decorating abilities that they decided to pose for their very first picture together in front of the dangling, overly spray-painted Christmas tree...

...both of them completely unsuspecting of the fact that thirteen years later, they would have celebrated their twelfth wedding anniversary, have two beautiful children, and be decorating their thirteenth Christmas tree together.

(Here's hoping that this little tree makes it to Christmas day. Noah has already knocked it down twice.)

***Share your photos from Christmas past here OR click there...
PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Trying to Tackle a Writing Career

For this week's tackle, I thought I'd focus on the latest effort I've made trying to break into the writing world. I wish I could devote more time to this pursuit, and I plan to after things calm down a bit around here...hopefully sooner than later. But I'm still on the lookout for writing opportunities. Recently, I submitted a personal essay/story to a local mommy networking website to see what kind of response I would get and to put my name out there. It's actually previous blog post that I tweaked a bit. Since my target audience is moms (aka - you ladies), I thought you might be able to offer me a little feedback.

So here goes nothing...

Big Girls Don't Cry
I made a complete fool of myself today at the dentist office. I've had quite a bit of dental work done lately. First - a huge filling for a tooth that broke while we were in Disney. (That was a nice surprise as we were waiting in line to meet Ariel.) And then a crown prep a few weeks ago for a tooth that has needed one for awhile...but I kept putting it off. Getting a crown is definitely not my idea of a good time, unless I've just won the Miss America pageant.

Regardless, today was the day to have the crown "delivered" as professionals call it. I drive over to the office, cringing the entire way there. For some reason, my mouth is very stubborn when it comes to Novocain. During my last two visits, I was injected at least three or four times before the anesthetic finally kicked in. Honestly, needles don't bother me that much, but since those shots went right into the lower jaw area, those muscles were sore for days. I was popping ibuprofen every four to six hours for the pain.

When I walk in this morning at 8am, I’m still trying to figure my way out of this. I offer to treat them to breakfast instead of going through with the "delivery" (which would have been a heck of a lot cheaper than the crown), but they just chuckle and smile sympathetically. I reluctantly sit down in the dental chair, and right away, spot that dreaded syringe which pretty much resembles a weapon out of a sci-fi movie. My dentist assures me that he should only have to give me one big shot in the very back of my mouth and just a couple little ones around the tooth. He knows how much I love these shots. I brace myself and try to think about something else...All of a sudden, I feel a wave of emotion come over me. A lump is in my throat, my face feels flushed, and I am trying everything in my power not to burst into tears! I'm thinking, What is wrong with me? I've never cried in the dentist office before. I know I'm tired. Both of the kids and my husband have been sick, I’m going to bed too late, the kids are waking up during the night and EARLY in the morning…but crying? in the dentist office? Really?

I'm still fighting back tears as he removes the needle and starts to explain the rest of the procedure. My heart starts racing, my hands start to tremor, and then the levy breaks. Tears are streaming down my face....this is crazy!!! My poor dentist looks a reasonably surprised as I'm apologizing for acting like a baby. Then he asks, "Do your hands feel shaky?"

"Yes. This is so weird" I squeak as I’m laughing, crying, and trying to catch my breath all at one time.

Then he proceeds to explain that the shot he gave me had epinephrine in it which can get your adrenaline going and sometimes trigger reactions like this. He says he wanted give me the "good stuff" for this procedure because the numbness would last longer.

Here I am thinking that I’m on the verge of some kind of Mommy meltdown. The sleep deprivation, work stress, constant cleaning, endless laundry, bedtime battles, acting as a referee between the kids, and keeping my two-year-old off the kitchen counters all day has finally caught up with me, but, surprisingly enough, it was the epinephrine…What a relief!

My BIO -
Kelli is a slightly sleep-deprived, multi-tasking, former school-teaching, chocolate-loving mama of two amazing kids. She is finally pursuing her childhood dream of becoming an author and is making her first published writing debut in a bestselling anthology series, A Cup of Comfort for New Mothers (due out in April 2009).

Be sure to check out what other moms are tackling at 5 Minutes For Mom!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Third TAG's a Charm

It's about time, huh? I've been tagged three times over the last little while, but I haven't had a chance to play yet so here I go!

The awesome Robin recently tagged me with this one...
What to do: Post the 4th picture in my 4th folder.
This was from Valentine's Day this past year. Pat got me these pretty flowers, & Abby loved them. So I took a few pics of her "stopping to smell the roses."
I couldn't resist posting this picture too. She's such a little cutie.

Then my good friend, Terri, tagged me with this one BEFORE Thanksgiving. (Sorry to take forever, girl!) This one might take me awhile so I'm going to shorten it a bit, if that's okay! :)

The Lucky #7 Tag:

7 things I can do:
1) carry a tune
2) play piano a little bit
3) make a mean batch of rice krispie treats
4) a triple time step
5) spend hours in Barnes and Noble (I don't ever get to, but I could!)
6) drive a stick shift (I can teach you, Terri!)
7) eat a half a bag of Famous Amos chocolate chip cookies without even realizing it.

7 things I can't do:
1) a cartwheel
2) play guitar (but I'd really like to learn)
3) get Abby to preschool on time (aahhh!)
4) resist chocolate
5) ask for help sometimes...even though I probably should.
6) ignore spelling errors(It's the teacher in me, what can I say?)
7) keep my house clean (at least not since my kids learned to walk)

7 things I say most often: (I consulted the kids & Pat on this one)
1) Hurry! We're going to be late!
2) Who loves you so much? (and the kids say, "Mommy does!")
3) Noah, get down!
4) Silly kid.
5) Abby, did you hear me?
6) It could be worse.
7) Just give Mommy a minute, please!!!

And last, but not least, keeping with the #7 theme, Reneca and Kalisha tagged me for this one BEFORE Halloween. I tell ya I don't know where the last couple months have gone. (Sorry, ladies!) I'm going to cheat a little bit on this one and link back to a 7 random fact meme I did a few months has pictures and everything!

Whew! Three tags in one post! Pretty good, if I do say so myself. :)

Of course, now it's my turn to tag a few people.

You're holding your breath, huh? Thinking, Oh I hope it isn't me, I've got so much to do...presents to wrap, cards to mail, cookies to bake, kids to chase...

You can breathe easy. I'm going to leave it totally up to you! If you want to pick one (or all) of these and play, that's great! Be sure to leave a comment and let me know, I'll definitely come by and check it out. Otherwise, happy last minute shopping, present-wrapping, card-mailing, cookie-baking, and whatever else that is on your TO-DO list! I'm just happy to have checked all of these tags off of my list!

They were fun, though. Thanks for thinking of me, ladies! (I promise I won't be such a slacker next time.)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Look What I Made!!!

A dark chocolate fudge cake layered with dark chocolate mousse...and I made it for Pat's birthday. (Am I a nice wife or what?) Yes, me...The person who, up until recently, only owned one, somewhat warped, cookie sheet and wasn't quite sure what a cooling rack looked like.
(These were recently on sale so I stocked up. Aren't you proud of me, Diana?)

Those who know me best know that cooking and baking definitely don't make my top ten list of favorite things to do, but it is kind of fun to make a special cake for a special occasion...once in awhile. And I figured since Pat got me this yummy ice cream cake/pie for my b'day not too long ago....
I should do something nice in return!

Of course, it's no Blue's Clues cake, like I made for Noah's b'day...but everybody still seemed to like it!
Click here to see what other moms are up to on Tackle It Tuesday!

Friday, December 5, 2008

So Long, Farewell...

Fall, you will be missed! Abby and Noah have LOVED having you around.

They will miss swimming in the leaves...

throwing them at each other...

playing hide and seek...

wrestling around with Daddy...

and scooping up armfuls to chuck at Mama while she's snapping pictures...

(I really lucked out capturing this moment...such genuine smiles. I just love it.)

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Woman Overboard!

The waves have been rough this week...a "Radio the Coast Guard" and "Throw me a life preserver" kind of week. (Actually, it's been more like a few months, but who's counting?)

We all have challenges we have to deal with in life. Some are much greater than others, and I am thankful for the things that I have not had to endure.

I thank Heavenly Father every day for the health and safety our family has been blessed with thus far. I know we have a lot to be grateful for.

Just like the ocean, life is unpredictable, and when the waves get rough, we appreciate the smooth sailing so much more.

Until then, I've just got to tighten my life jacket, stay afloat, and hug my kids a little tighter.

(And eat chocolate...lots of chocolate!)