Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Eve & Day

Christmas Eve we decided to go to the early church service that was toddler friendly.  It was a very good service with lots of children participating in the Christmas pageant (next year Collier will be able to participate) that was just too cute.  We then had a relaxing afternoon before Santa stopped by on his route around the world to delivery toys (this is a fun tradition that has been in our family for years and one of my most favorite and cherished memories every single Christmas).  Collier acted like it was no big deal at all for Santa to be in his house!  I may have been as excited as he was! He was too funny.

Christmas morning he woke up thrilled to see that Santa came back and ate his cookies and brought him a 'chtooter'.  He got on it immediately and then rode all around the house on the scooter, needless to say he was very happy.  He was also happy to hear that he could finally OPEN those presents that had been sitting under the tree.  I was shocked that he didn't immediately get into the gifts under the tree and his stocking.  After he rode on his scotter a little he was ready for his morning 'nanna' and tv time.  It was perfect as it allowed me to get breakfast cooked and we ate before opening gifts.  It was really nice, fun and relaxing.  We then showered and headed to Mom and Dad's for the afternoon/evening.

Funny side note: Brinkley got up in the middle of the night 
and ate Santa's cookies.  thankfully Daddy realized it and 
replenished for Santa :) 
(grandparents:CH doesn't know this....our little secret)

The next day was equally as good, another day full of playing with new toys.  Time together around the house and just a day at home.  I didn't leave the house all day yesterday, matter of fact I didn't even put on makeup or shoes which really made me happy.

I am working slowly on getting our house organized, cleaned out and in order (as much as I can with all of Christmas decorations still out).  January is going to bring some major re-arranging to make room for little Ms.Priss!  Should be fun, but certainly a challenge in our little house :)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! I loved this video (you have probably already seen it) but the simplicity of the story and the children are just perfect for this Christmas morning, as we celebrate the Birth of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,
I have been a good boy this year! I hope that you'll come by my house tonight.  I am glad that I got to see you a few times before Christmas, I always get so excited to see you and sit on your lap.  I just wanted to let you know what I want for Christmas.  I would really appreciate if you could fit this down our chimney

But if that is just too big, I'll take one of these instead (preferably not pink please!)

I baked cookies for you and Rudolf and I hope you enjoy them
With love,

The only thing that Collier has asked for all season is a cooder..aka tooter.  If I ask him what else he wants he says 'just a tooter that all'.  But he certainly loved the 4-wheelers at Bass Pro Shops and would love one of those as well...he just doesn't know yet what his asking potential is.  Thankfully:)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas - Round 2

Justin's Dad and Cher made the trip up to Birmingham to celebrate with us.  When I mentioned that we are not traveling this year, I know that I sort of made things complicated for the rest of our family.  But I am so thankful to have their support.  Although they may not like that we are staying here, they have not said anything and have been but supportive.  I certainly appreciate that and am thankful for my family...ALL of our parents are so awesome.

Thank you Papoo and Nunny for making this special trip up just for us.  I wish we had more time but I am thankful for what we did get with yall.  Very sweet of you to take the time for us.

Collier was so excited to get to open presents and he was even more thrilled with what was in those wrapped presents!  So much fun.... and I am not sure if Collier or Justin had more fun with the remote control tractor!  I will admit that he just looks so stink'n cute in his football stuff, it is just all the wrong colors!  He was brain washed by his Daddy before I even knew it and now his grandparents are reinforcing it :)

Merry Christmas Eve Eve!!!  Its almost here, I'm so excited.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Week..A Big Change

It is just hard to believe that Christmas is so near already.   I want so bad for everything to be perfect this year.  As a result this desire has added stress for sure, self-induced stress that is!  I am trying to enjoy but at the same time trying to also pull it all together to make it all just right.  After all this is a very different Christmas.  This is our very first ever Christmas in Birmingham since Justin and I have been married.  Matter of fact, it has been well over 12 years (right mom) that we have done Christmas here.  I have documented that Justin (who is my real life Christmas Elf) and I love this time of year.  And so, for the most amazing and special time of year I want it to be extra fun and extra special this year since we are home.  We can do it our way and be on our own schedule.  But in that effort,  I feel like I am working myself into a freenzy and an un-necessary one at that.  Usually about this time I throw my hands up and say what is done is done because I have to start packing and getting ready to travel South.  But now, I have that extra time and can do those extra things that I think of.  But maybe I shouldn't.  Maybe I should just slow down and have the extra down time with my boys.  Just make the most of our time together rather than my time!    I wrapped up the last of my shopping yesterday.   I have several things that I want to bake but time in the kitchen is fun for me and I am looking forward to that most.  It is a little bitter sweet to have this huge change in schedule.  It is hard because we were used to going to Dothan and the Lake and making our rounds to be with everyone on Christmas.  I love family and think it is important to do and be with family, so I am missing that.  But I am excited that we are starting our new traditions as a little family this year  (It sounds and even feels a little selfish).  It is hard to try and squeeze in so much family time in just a day or two, so it has been nice to spread it out a little and enjoy a little more time with each family than we would if we did it like we normally do [have you seen Four Christmas'?  that was sort of us] .  But this year I really want it to be about Collier because never again will he have a Christmas all to himself.

Wednesday we went and saw Santa again! Collier is certainly comfortable with Santa and for that I am thankful! And then that night we met Lindsey and Hunter for dinner and then we all piled in Justin's car and drove around to look at Christmas lights. It was something that we've talked about for years and finally did this year. It was so much fun and we laughed a lot. Hunter and Justin are both critics when it comes to Christmas lights and they were not afraid to share their opinion. It was jut fun to be with friends and enjoy each others company while looking at all of the Christmas lights.    Collier was ready to 'go home' about 5 minutes into the ride and before long he was fast asleep, so he missed most of the fun but was perfectly content snoring away in his car seat as we enjoyed the lights.

Last night we had a pajama party at one of our neighbor's house.  it sure is fun to not have to plan or think of what I am going to wear to another function or party....We just put on some PJ's and walked across the street.  Collier and I didn't last very long but it was still a late night.

I have to run to the grocery and then to do a Santa drop and I will be done.  I will be ready to kick off my boots and just RELAX.  whew.

So Much to Celebrate

We do have so much to celebrate at this time of year.  The  most important is Jesus alone is reason to celebrate but the joy in this celebration is that we don't have to just wait until this time of year but Jesus is reason enough to celebrate all year, every day, every minute.  It is a joy, blessing and just plain honor to have Christ, the Savior, the King of kings, the One who came to save, the Great I am in your heart!  Our God is a huge and big God....but He is also a God who loves, understands and wants to be in the details of our life as well.  When I am praying or talking to God I like to imagine Jesus sitting with me, or that I am curled up in His arms or maybe he is sitting with me in the car while I am driving.  The feeling of knowing that He is right there is so personal and comforting!  I came across a flyer in an old bible study this week and I wanted to share..  The name on the flyer is Jill Phillips and from the words below it is clearly a song!  Not sure if Jill wrote it or just performs it....

I Am

oh gently lay your head upon my chest 
and I will comfort you like a mother while you rest
the tide can change so fast, but I will stay the same
through past, the same in the future, same today

I am constant; I am near
I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy; I am wise
I'm the only one who knows your heart's desires
your heart's desires

oh weary, tired and worn, let out your signs
and drop that heavy load you hold 'cause Mine is light
I know you through and through; there's no need to hide
I want to show you love that is deep and high and wide

'cause I am constant; I am near
I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy; I am wise
I'm the only one who knows your heart's desires
your heart's desires

I am constant; I am near

I am peace that shatters all your secret fears
I am holy; I am wise
I'm the only one who knows your heart's desires
your heart's desires

oh gently lay your head upon my chest 
and I will comfort you like a mother while you rest.

On the back side of the flyer are these verse references:
John 16:33 'I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.'

Matthew 11:28-30 'Come to me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light'
Isn't that just a relief?  rest, little burden...just what I need this time of year!  I love this sweet reminder

Psalm 139:1-4, 13-14 'O LORD, you have searched me and you know me.  You know when I sit and when I rise; You perceive my thoughts from afar.  You discern my going out and my lying down; You are familiar with all of my ways.  Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.  For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your woks are wonderful and I know that full well. '

Hebrews 13:8 "Jesus Chris is the same yesterday and today and forever."

I have read these every day this week.  In my constant effort to stay focused so that I don't fall apart like I did a week a go.  I need this focus and rest in Him so that as I do the worldly part of Christmas that I will at least do it with His joy in my heart rather than trying to do it just to get it done!  I want ti to be fun for all of us as we prepare for this Christmas 2011!  I hope that these words will speak to you like they have spoken to me.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas - Round 1

last weekend we got to celebrate Christmas with Justin's Mom and Brother and family.  We all met at Callaway Gardens to visit Fantasy of Lights and have some time together.  Mrs. Pam rented a fabulous house and we had a blast.  Collier got up Friday morning asking when he could go fishing with his fish'n pole.  We went to see the lights on Saturday night and Collier got to see Santa and even one of his reindeer.


Buzz put some serious time and effort into this tractor and Collier loved it. Thank you Buzz!

 this sweet girl just keeps growing and growing!  She is just precious and we had a good time seeing her walking and almost running!  Wont be long before she is keeping up with Collier.

 this was our failed effort to get a picture of the two babies together.

There was also an outdoor fireplace that we enjoyed both nights.  The kids were in bed before we actually got around to making s'mores.  But I believe the adults [especially the pregnant one] enjoyed it as much as the kids would have.   We all gathered around the fire place to keep warm.  It was so much fun.   There was also a rather large bath tub in one of the bathrooms that I got to enjoy all alone in complete peace and quite on Friday night - this made me so happy!  
Here are a few lights from our trolly ride through Callaway

Sweet Memories!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Project Big Boy Room

**NOTE: I started this post in October**
I have always said that I wanted to keep Collier in his crib as long as I possibly can.  I think that I've done that.  Although he is short of my goal of age 15, but with another munchkin on the way I thought it may be time to start moving in that direction.  I good friend of my Mom's gave us a full bed they were wanting to get rid of.  I went back and forth about what would be best to transition Collier to... a twin bed or a full size bed and this was just the Lords way of saying 'Here, go with the full and quit over thinking it'.  I am so thankful and very excited.  The one catch to this is that the headboard and foot board were once unfinished furniture (many years ago) and they have been stained, painted, painted again, and moved and chipped.  They need some special attention and that is exactly the plans.

After a few cans of paint and even a few spray paints, I finally found the one I liked the best.

I am very happy to report that this is our second week third month in the big boy bed and we haven't even looked back.  His crib is still up in his room....just in case he didn't do good but I do think that we are now clear for taking that down for a little while (at least until after baby arrives).  He loves his bed.  The first weekend he even went and got in it and took a nap all on his own....it wasn't even nap time!  I was shocked!  We were all in the den, he disappeared and I heard him in his room, checked the camera and he had crawled in the bed and gone to sleep.

I still have a few things to do/find.  I don't really LOVE the sheets but they work for now and I forgot to buy a mattress pad.  Plus I don't have a bed skirt yet and I think that we're going to have to make one because the bed is pretty high.  All things I hope to get done in the next few weeks (UPDATE: none of these things are done yet and the honest truth is that it will probably be after Christmas before it does get done).  He still calls for us when he wakes up in the morning (doesn't get out on his own - even though he can), I am happy about that as I am not ready for him to get himself up just yet.   But for now, I am just very happy to report that he is doing great and I am super proud of him.
I will probably move the art work above the head board.  My cousin gave me some book wall shelves that I am thinking to put next t his bed instead of the pictures!  Again...all to be done after Jan. 1.  

I looked at him sitting on the couch this morning before we left for school and my heart fell a little because he is getting to be such a big boy.  His features are looking less and less like my little baby and more and more like a big boy!  

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

a day

It has been a day already.  I woke up, after not sleeping good and having crazy/disturbing dreams, and was not wanting to get out of the bed.  I was already behind schedule.  By the time I got myself put together and Collier fed I decided that I wasn't going to take him to school and my mom needed to leave her house by 8:30 to meet a friend.  Collier has had a runny nose and a slight cough and I decided to keep him out of school to just be on the safe side.   I was trying to hurry and Collier wasn't in any hurry and not exactly cooperating which resulted in me getting frustrated with him and myself.  My attitude is bad today and the bad part is that I realize it.  I remind myself that it is a choice that I make of if I adjust my attitude or not.  All of this going through my head on the way to work....as I keep telling myself that I don't want to go to work and just want to go home and get in the bed.  My back hurts.  I did make it to get a flu shot and then to grab lunch at chickfila before coming to the office.  The lady giving me my food looked at me and said 'I just have to thank you, you have been smiling the entire time and I really needed that today, so thank you'.  She wished me a good day and off I went and then I cried.  Little did she know (and I should have told her) how much I needed to hear that!  A simple smile that requires so little effort makes such a different.  I know that God put her in my path and I know that it was He who was telling me that.  I am a wreck today and I am trying to pull it together.

And you want to know why I am just crazy today?  because I have been out of God's word for a solid week now.  I haven't touched my bible and I can feel the result.  I can feel satan, the world creeping in and taking over and distracting me.  I don't like it and I have the choice to resist and turn to my loving God who came to this earth for me.  The Son of God, who is the creator of all things, who is fully God yet became fully human (the Word became human and made His home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen His glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son. John 1:14). He chose and so today, I choose too! I choose to look to Him instead of the things that are to be done. I want Him to be my every thought instead of my to do list. I want Him to fill me with His joy instead of the temporary joys this world can falsely give. It is after all HIM that we are here to celebrate for Christmas. No matter what we do and try to do to make Christmas our way, the bottom line is that if not for the birth of Christ, there would be no Christmas. No gifts, no lights, no celebration, no gather, no point. It is all for Him and it is just my desire to keep focused on Him.  I am really trying to teach Collier that Christmas day we will celebrate Jesus' birthday.  I have no idea what is sinking in and what is going clear over his head, but I promise that I am talking about it.  Now if I can only reflect Jesus in my attitude for Collier to see more clearly I think I would be much better off.

I then just get mad at myself for letting myself get so out of balance. Needless to say I am going to wake up early tomorrow morning and dive straight into His word for some much needed quiet time. I am not going to allow the busyness of this season to be a reason for me to stray away and not bind myself to the One who is the whole point of everything that we have going on.  

Monday, December 12, 2011


It was this cuties birthday this weekend.....
 he melts my heart
I love him in a million pieces
he cracks me up
he stole my heart many many years ago and I am so glad he did!

Happy Belated Birthday to my Justin.  I love him so much, I am thankful to have him.  He is an awesome father and wonderful husband.  I would say that laughter defines him and I am thankful for that - he helps me to laugh at myself and silly things that I do that I would normally get frustrated with.  He is a great provider and takes good care of all of us!  I couldn't ask for anything more!  Happy Birthday Just!

Our weekend was a little crazy and I did a bunch of baking.  I was taking brownies and cookies to a dirty santa party plus made red velvet cupcakes for the birthday boy!  Collier helped me decorate the cookies and then was my tester on the brownies!  We are sort of on a sugar overload around here!

Hope that your weekend was extra SWEET too!