Monday, December 30, 2013

Back to Normal

After a week off work Chuck returned today and the boys I watch came back. I was sad to see Chuck return to work but it did feel good to get back some of our routine. Megan will be with me for another week before returning to school.

Before Chuck returned to work we worked on putting the Christmas décor away.

 
There was so much stuff that we no longer put out so we went through everything and ended up with an overflowing box for charity.   It felt good to lighten the load.
 
 
Ahhhhhh... much better.  
 
 
I know that some people feel let down once the décor is put away.  Not me!  I thrive on the feeling of simplicity. 
 
Menu planning was a little lax the last month so it was time to get back to that.  Having a menu plan helps me to start dinner early and avoid the temptation of running out to get something. 
 
 
The "to do" list is also back in action. Having a list helps to keep me accountable.  Not to mention that I love to mark things off the list! 


As much as I love the holidays I also enjoy the ordinary days.  I am looking forward to my slow, simple routine!

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Slow and Meaningful Season

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas. It was very nice for us. This was probably the most relaxed Christmas season I have had in years. We said no to many outings, cut out some activities and I went days without picking up my camera. It was slow, relaxing and caused me to soak up the meaning of Christmas. We didn't miss the hustle and bustle one bit.  I was actually living in the moment! (More to come about that another day.)

Megan treated her grandparents a recital of "The First Noel."
 
 
Megan ended up with a cough and stuffy nose the week before Christmas.  The day of her school party she told me that if it wasn't party day she would stay home.  Not something she does often since she loves school.  I let her go to school and could tell she wasn't feeling well when I arrived for the afternoon party.  She started running fever that evening. 
 
She sleep with a stack of pillows to help her breath and must have been cold since she had on her earmuffs. :)
 
 
Thankfully she bounced back in a few days and was able to visit Santa.
 
 
Many of our evenings have been spent playing games.
 
 
 The one activity that we did was a gingerbread house. 
 
 
Christmas Eve our first stop was at Grandma & Grandpa's house (Chuck's mom and step-dad).
 
 
 
We then joined family for a nice meal at Olive Garden to celebrate my dad's birthday. 
 
Megan was up at 5:30 Christmas morning.  I knew there was no way she would go back to sleep so we rolled with it.  I am so glad that we did.  We were able to watch the sunrise and it was breathtaking!

 
Chuck sure surprised me.  This is my gift.  
 
 
I had mentioned liking this several years ago.  It is a little pricy and I never expected to own one.  After my surprise wore off and it hit me Chuck looked at me smiled and said "I had a coupon."  So now I love it even more! :)
 
The hit of Christmas morning was Battleship.  This has been played often.
 
 
After a quiet morning at home we were off for two more stops first was Chuck's dad and stepmoms and then later to my parents.  
 

You can go ahead and shake your head at the amount of gifts.  I do every year!  Every year we tell Chuck's dad that is too much.  As you can tell he doesn't listen.  Even Megan said something about them.  She pulled me aside and said "don't you think the amount of presents are a little much?"   Thankfully she understands the true gift we are receiving at Christmas. 

Chuck has been off all week so we have spent time doing a little organizing as things are put away, reading, playing games and tomorrow morning we will put the décor away. 

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Joy in the Ordinary

Look around, really look around and you will find joy... joy in the everyday... joy in the ordinary things.


May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Best Sugar Cookie

Growing up this is the recipe that my mom used.  It comes from a cookbook where the pages are falling out and there lot of splatters on the pages.  That, my friends, is how you can tell a well loved recipe!  








Sift the following:
3 cups all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Cut in 1 cup softened butter until crumbly.

Beat 1 egg, add 3 tbs evaporated milk and 1 tsp vanilla

Mix to form dough.  Chill slightly and then roll out dough.  You can sprinkle with sugar or bake plain for frosting.  Bake at 400* for 8-10 minutes. 


Ginger and Snowmen will be joining Megan at school tomorrow for another bake sale. 



May your day be filled with joy and contentment!

Monday, December 09, 2013

Snow!

There is something special about watching the first snow of the season.  We received about five inches and thankfully missed all of the ice!
 




The kids were begging to get out and play.  The boys didn't bring snow pants so I ended up bringing in the snow and they had *snow* much fun! 
 

Many different kinds of pies were made that afternoon.
 


Saturday afternoon we went to my parents to bake cookies and I packed Megan's snow gear.   She had a blast playing with her cousin. 


Sunday afternoon Megan and Daddy headed over the Papaw's house for some sledding.  It was her first time and I was sad to have to miss it.  I wasn't feeling well and ended up at Immediate Care.  Once again I have bronchitis.  Ugh... hopefully it won't linger on as it did last year. 


Apparently she had a little trouble steering and keep going off the sledding trail.  Chuck said it was good for a few laughs.   I am looking forward to hitting the hill with her next time. 


May your day be filled with joy and contentment!  

Thursday, December 05, 2013

Cupcake Love


The second grade class at Megan's school were drawn to host bake sale during the month of December.  Not the best month for me to have extra baking, but I am making the best of it.  This week I sent in a little cupcake love!


May your day be filled with joy and contentment!