Sunday, December 27, 2009

This Christmas

I’m so far behind on my Project 365 updates. It’s quite pitiful. I have birthday and Christmas photos to share so of course you’re going to be treated/tortured with a post of EPIC proportions. Here we go…

Alexis asked me to make her a cake for her birthday. It sounded simple enough. Three layers, some flowers, and some marshmallow fondant. Easy peasy right? Wrong! It took me three entire days to make it!

On the 17th I made the gum paste flowers. It took hours! I think it would’ve gone better if I’d had the proper tools that I was planning to buy. I didn’t end up buying them because my van’s water pump, breaks, and wipers had to be replaced to the tune of $600 dollars. So, I made due with what I had. (I made them so early because they had to dry for two days to be ready to put on the cake.)


On the 18th I made the actual cake, and the marshmallow fondant. Then I put it all together. It came out pretty cute. I was beginning to think that all of the hard work (6+ hours) had been worth it!


On the 19th, we had Lexie’s birthday party. She was really thrilled with the cake, which was really awesome.


We had a big party with a nacho bar, and a sleepover. Her cousin came up to spend the night. My Mom and I didn’t get to bed until around midnight. They had a great time though. Especially the part where they got to dress up and do karaoke…



We got her a Nintendo DS and a few games, and my grandma got her that super frilly beautiful skirt she wore for dress up. I think everyone had a wonderful time.

Brandon was laughing and joking around in the tub on the 20th, so I had to see what was going on. He kept putting the reindeer rubber duckie I bought him at Michaels on his head. He called it a hat, then he’d bend over to make it fall off and laugh hysterically. I had to snap this photo of him. He’s such a turkey!


I got some SERIOUS scrapping done on the 21st. Thanks to a wonderful gift from my best friend, I was able to order some scrapbook paper to coordinate with the fairy photos Jordan had done last March. I ended up scrapping all of the photos within a day or two, but here’s a portion of my favorite layout I did to count as the photo of the day.


Brandon has the hardest time staying away from the Christmas tree. For the most part, he listens when I say to get away from it. (I don’t mind him touching the ornaments, but if he gets rough he has to stop.) He was in an ornery mood on the 22nd, and wouldn’t listen at ALL when I said to stop, so he got his very first time out ever. I know, hard to believe but it’s true! I put him in the time out corner, and he put his head on his arms and looked pitiful. Lady put herself in sympathetic time out, and when I saw the similarity of their poses, I couldn’t help but snap a photo!


Alexis and Jordan were very excited when we got a package in on the 23rd from my good scrappy buddy Michelle. She got the girls Hello Kitty jewelry and mini albums, and Brandon an ornament. They were SO excited to get to open a present “early”. She also got me an ornament which of course had to do with scrapbooking! How cool is she? Thanks M! You’re the best! (P.S. Look closely at the Christmas Eve photos of the girls. They insisted on wearing their Hello Kitty goodies.)


We went down to my grandparent’s house in Port Sulphur on Christmas Eve. It is SUCH a long drive. Ronnie went with me even though he had a spot on his arm that was painful. It had been red and swollen for a few days, and I kept telling him that it looked like a spider bite. He wouldn’t listen though. We still managed to have a good time at my grandparent’s house. We even got to visit my grandpa’s house boat for the first time.

Yep, that’s a pelican. He’d just caught a fish and was thrashing around trying to swallow it.


Of course Brandon was VERY impressed. Note his outfit. It’s just not a redneck Christmas without boats and camouflage.


We also got to visit with the newest members of the Longman family. My grandma got two new goats for Christmas. This brings the grand total up to FIVE goats. Jordan was consulted, and asked what their names were because she has named all of the other animals and is considered the “namer”. She declared that their names were Millie and Billy. Maw Maw says that’s a lot better than Peanut Butter, Jelly, and Goat Possum. (The other goats names.) This is my Aunt Laura holding one of the goats for Lexie to pet. Did I mention one of the other goats is pregnant? Yep. It’s like visiting a petting zoo. LOL The kids adore going down there.


I was thrilled when I saw this photo of my Mom and I together on Christmas Eve. I don’t have many photos of us together. I’m usually behind the camera!  (Shut up Mom. It’s a good picture! You look good!) No, we didn’t call each other ahead and color coordinate either. It just happened that way. 


Everyone had a really great time. Here are some of the younger cousins. I don’t know where Jordan was. Probably eating some of the 12 dozen cookies my Mom made.


When I say everyone had a good time, I mean everyone but Ronnie. Toward the end of the night he was in a lot of pain, and we ended up leaving early so he could go to the emergency room. I really wish he would’ve told me he was hurting so badly sooner. When I asked him about it later, he told me that he didn’t want to ruin my Christmas. Sweet, but misguided. I wanted to smack him for suffering in silence. Men! See the band aides?


He brought us home, and then went to the ER by himself at 8:30. The doctor told him he had a really bad staph infection called MRSA. They had to cut his arm open to drain the infection, and he was put on major antibiotics. He was in a lot of pain, so I did the whole Christmas thing that night. We got ready for Santa, and he went to sleep. He seemed to be feeling a little better on Christmas morning.

I helped the kids open their presents, and I took half a million photos. Jordan with her new “real” guitar from Santa.


Alexis singing to the Wii game that we got to go along with our Wii console. (Thank you Auntie Lisa and Miss Janet! We love you guys, and not just because you bought us a Wii either! LOL)

DSC00243  Brandon looking slightly disgruntled over the fact that I expected him to open all of the presents before I started taking them out of the boxes. I know. I’m totally unreasonable.


I finally did get everything out of the boxes, and put together while Ronnie rested on the couch. I felt so bad that he really didn’t get to participate much this year. He took a nap while I cleaned up, and he did get to play a bit of Wii bowling since it only took one hand. After he laid back down, I had a blast playing the Wii. Seriously, I may be addicted. Only a tiny bit. Shhh! Don’t tell anyone!

That night of the 25th, Brandon fell off of his bed. The landed face first on the floor and bit his lip and made one of his top teeth bleed. His poor little upper lip got so swollen, and he bled everywhere. Boys are so adventurous and daring. He cried for a little while and I cuddled him, then he was off to dig in something else. I was worried I’d end up having to take HIM to the ER, but thank goodness he seemed to get better.

I got up early this morning to start the chicken and sausage gumbo for Ronnie’s family. They came over to celebrate Christmas and exchange presents today because Ronnie’s Dad worked yesterday. They brought a HUGE playhouse for the kids. They spoil those children rotten, but when I tell them that they simply reply that it’s their job. LOL Here is Alexis in the playhouse that took me over an hour to put together. I now have several blisters!



Ronnie went BACK to the doctor today before his family got here. The doctor reopened the incision, and gave him more medicine. He slept off and on all day. I feel so very bad for him. Between him with his swollen arm, and Bubba with his severely swollen lip I feel like my guys have just been through hell this Christmas. We muddled through and managed to have a decent time in spite of it all, but I’m hoping everyone will get better soon.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I Gotta Feeling

I’ve got a feeling that this Christmas is going to be very special. I’ve been so much more relaxed this season. We have been concentrating on the important things. I’ve made sure we have been spending lots of time as a family… watching Christmas movies, decorating the tree, making cookies, and much more! You’ll see photos of all of it in my Project 365 update.

My kids’ favorite fast food place to eat is Taco Bell. They don’t get to do it often! Last Thursday Ronnie brought home take out and Brandon was in Cinnamon Twist heaven. I think he got more ON him than IN him, but he certainly is cute anyway. I just can’t get over how quickly he’s growing.


Every year I try to get photos of the kids in front of the Christmas tree. It’s a great way to gauge how much they’ve grown in a single year. Jordan and Brandon were not cooperative at all on Friday when I tried to get them to pose. Luckily my super model seven year old was ready to step up to the plate. This is my favorite of all of the photos I got. I have a few where she was smiling, but for some reason this one is really striking to me.


We watched “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” Saturday night. It is my absolute favorite Christmas movie EVER. I got a really good photo of Alexis and Jordan watching TV together. Brandon was on the couch by me. Momma’s boy! (Note the difference in their hair! We took them to the beauty shop Saturday morning and got tons chopped off. I think they look adorable.)


I am almost finished Christmas shopping and wrapping presents. I am OUT of room for presents under the tree. Anything else I wrap will have to be stored elsewhere until it’s time to be opened. This photo was taken on Sunday. There’s nothing more heartwarming than a lit Christmas tree.


My Christmas present came in on Monday, and Ronnie let me have it early. He’s such a darling man! LOL I am in love with this little, tiny, lightweight camera. You would not believe the shots I’m getting with it, then again maybe you would because I’m fixing to show you! Plus… how cute is it that it’s red? Seriously!


Yesterday was Miss Jordan’s Christmas program at the school. She is SUCH a ham! Brandon got really upset and we had to walk out of the gym during the performance, but luckily the vice principal happened along and volunteered to sit with him for a minute so I could pop in while Jordan sang. I took this video of her doing her THANG. (She’s all the way on the left.)

The photo of the day for Tuesday was of Mr. Brandon having an attitude while we waited for Jordan to come out. This camera is so awesome, it makes Froot Loops look cool. LOL


I also took this one yesterday.


And this one… *Sigh*

Where was I? I got totally side tracked. LOL Oh! Today. I took a photo of the pile of presents under our tree to remember the fact that I used numbers instead of names on the presents this year. The kids are starting to get older, and they can recognize their names. So to keep them out of the presents, I numbered them based on the order they came to live in our house. So Jordan is 1, Alexis is 2, and Brandon is 3. I think I’m going to use reindeer names next year. Want to guess which one is Dasher, which one is Dancer, and which one is Prancer? LOL


Friday, December 11, 2009

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas here. Especially in my scrapbooks! I've been in the Christmas spirit lately, and what better way to celebrate than to scrapbook last year's Christmas photos?! I'm hoping to get last year's photos done before I take more this year! LOL I thought I'd share a few of the layouts I've done in the past few weeks. If you would like to view them closer or see what products I used, you can click on the image to open it in a new window.

Thanks for stopping by, and if I don't post again before Christmas... Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Let it Snow!

It’s been a while since I’ve updated my blog. (Thank you to Super Nancy for pointing that out. LOL) I’ve been very busy with my Jessica Sprague Holidays in Hand class that I’m doing, and I haven’t had much extra time to sit and write. The holiday season is always the busiest part of the year at my house! I have a Project 365 update and a template freebie to share that I did for the Ideas For Scrapbookers blog a week or so ago.

Last Thursday Jordan had hippotherapy for the first time since I had my surgery. I am finally feeling like myself again, and I have starting running everyone to their usual appointments. In the photo of the day, Jordan is bundled like an Eskimo. We’ve been experiencing some extremely cold weather here in Louisiana. I think her horse was even shivering. I KNOW her volunteers were. I’m so thankful for the time they spend with her.


Alexis came home from school on Friday saying that the teacher said it would snow that night. I looked at her like she was crazy, but when I went on the local weather website… It really was predicted! Sure enough, at 10:30 at night, it started snowing. We woke the girls up and bundled them up to go out and play. We only got about an inch, but they were thrilled. This is the second year in a row that it’s snowed here in Louisiana. I’m starting to think global warming is a myth! LOL



I did not wake up Brandon, because he gets extremely cranky if he doesn’t get his beauty sleep!

We went to visit Santa Claus on Saturday, and got our family photo done. It did not go well at all. Both Jordan and Brandon were crying, Alexis refused to smile… the photographer didn’t listen when I said to “just snap the photo”. (Imagine me saying that while smiling with my teeth gritted.) Finally he snapped it, and this is the result. I think I look crazy. LOL I know this photo will be one to look back on and laugh at later, but I honestly didn’t feel much like laughing at the time.


Ronnie should know better than to goof around and put a Santa hat on around me! I ended up sneaking the camera out, and snapping his picture while he was baking a cake for the kids on Sunday. You’re never safe with a scrapbooker in the house! LOL


As a part of my Jessica Sprague class that I’m doing, one of the prompts was to take a photo of my favorite holiday food. Well, since I’m difficult… I changed it a bit and took a photo of my favorite holiday drink on Monday. Hot chocolate! In an Eeyore cup no less. Happy day!


By Tuesday, our cold weather had disappeared. It stormed for two days straight. We were under flash flood watches, and were watching the water steadily rise in the yard. Of course I took a photo! This was after the water had gone down some. I even had to bring Jordan to the doctor for her five year old check up in the midst of all of the weather. The roads were covered in water, and in some spots it was 4-5 inches deep. Her checkup went fine, but she was furious that she had to get her flu shot.


Today’s photo isn’t a creative one, but it’s very special to me! The Jessica Sprague prompt today was to take a photo of your favorite Christmas book. Mine is “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”. I have had this book since I was a little girl. Now I get to read it to my kids. It’s a little beat up, but that’s because it’s so loved!


Last but not least, here’s the digital scrapbooking freebie I promised. I did these two templates for the Ideas for Scrapbookers blog where I’m a contributing artist. I thought I’d share them here for the digital girls who don’t go over there. (You don’t know what you’re missing!) There are two layered digital Christmas tree templates!

Here’s the first one…

Small Size Tree Template

and the download link…

Here’s the second one…

HL_TreeTemplate2 Small

and the download link…

They are sized at 8x10 inches to make perfect printable holiday gifts to frame! Or you can resize them as you would like for use on your layouts. If you use them, leave me a link and you could be featured here on my blog, and on the Ideas for Scrapbookers blog!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Going Griswold

I have another Project 365 update! Last Sunday, Ronnie put up our Christmas lights. Our neighbor was putting up his lights as well, and Ronnie decided he would have to outdo the neighbors. He said, “We’re going Griswold this year!” (From the Christmas Vacation movie.) These are only part of the lights he plans to put up. I think it’s funny. I’ve been doing a lot of experimentation with low light photos lately. I love how this one came out.


On Monday I took a photo of my cough and cold medicine because I haven’t been feeling well. The weather changing back and forth makes me sick. I have a sinus infection. I’m hoping I’ll get better soon!


Jordan and I went to Children’s Hospital in New Orleans for her VCUG test on her kidneys on Tuesday. It was extremely traumatic for her. They ended up catheterizing her three times. I felt horrible for having to help hold her down. Being a Mom is not easy! They found out that her left kidney (the pelvic one) is working, but it has two tubes coming from it instead of one. One of the tubes is attached to her bladder, but they can’t tell where the other tube connects. She will have to have more testing after the New Year with a camera, but thank God she will be asleep this time. She demanded that I take a picture of her after she got her ultrasound because “she wants to scrapbook it”. Please continue praying for her.


Yesterday’s photo of the day was of my comfy Christmas quilt. Ronnie's sister Stephanie gave me this quilt for Christmas one year. It is the perfect quilt, and Ronnie and I fight over who gets to use it when it comes out of storage for Christmas decoration. It's warm, and perfect for naps. The best part? It's absolutely adorable too!


I got my Christmas present in yesterday! Ronnie can never wait until Christmas to give me my presents. It’s a new camera! I am absolutely thrilled with it, but there’s a bit of a learning curve to be sure! LOL Hopefully you’ll be seeing lots better photos soon!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I’m So Thankful

I’ve really been getting into the holiday spirit lately! Thanksgiving with my family was really wonderful. We’ve got our tree up, and we’re starting to get our Christmas lights up outside. I’ve been making my Christmas list of the things my kids want and need. I’m getting lots of great photos for my Project 365 too! Plenty of stuff going on over here as usual. Here’s the update…

Last Sunday, Ronnie called me into the bathroom to take my photo of the day. Lady was in the tub, and she was not a happy camper at all.


The kids have been out of school all week long. It’s been really crazy and fun. When Ronnie got in the door on Monday, Jordan jumped in his lap to talk to him. She loves him so much, and he loves her. She’s got him completely wrapped around her little finger. (You can tell by her grin that she knows that can’t you?!)


I’ve been planning Alexis’ birthday party for December 19th, and she asked me to make her a cake with fondant. I’ve been doing some sketches and trying to figure out what I want to do. Tuesday’s photo is of one of my sketches. It’s my favorite so far, but I think I need to add another grouping of flowers on the bottom. What do you think?


My sister in law called me Wednesday morning. She invited the kids and I out to eat at Cracker Barrel in Hammond. We met her at her house, and then drove to the restaurant. The kids were really good (Surprise!) and we had a nice time. After the restaurant we went to Hobby Lobby. I had never been to one before, and I thought it was awesome! We went to her house for a little while before I had to go home and cook sweet potatoes for Thanksgiving. The kids had a blast swinging on her porch swing and playing with her two poodles.


Thanksgiving on Thursday was really great. I got to see my family! My Uncle David came down from Texas, my brother brought his kids, and my Aunt and her boyfriend were there too. I took this really great photo of my Mom with all of her grandkids. It just makes me smile every time I see it.


Yesterday we put our Christmas tree up! We listened to Christmas carols, and had a wonderful time. After the tree was up, we ate cookies and drank hot cocoa together as a family. Little traditions like that… just make me happy. Here are some of the photos I took. All of these are straight out of the camera, unedited. I used a tripod, and no flash. I’m so proud of my low light photos!



Today we celebrated my mother in law’s birthday. We had company all day. I baked a gigantic cupcake for her, and we had Applebee’s for lunch. As part of the celebration, we painted ornaments for our Christmas tree. All of the grown ups pitched in to help the kids. Here’s a photo of Brandon and I painting. We made a HUGE mess!


I haven’t been feeling well at all, so I think I’m going to sign off and go drink some more Theraflu. That’s the only bad part about this time of year, I always end up sick. I think I’m getting a sinus infection. Argh!