Thursday, December 25, 2008

The Laundry System

  • I love a system.

  • I love routine.

  • I love order.

  • I do not always create successful systems.

  • I do not always follow through on systems.

  • But I love them anyway.

Here is a view of our new laundry room. Marc 'custom built' this nook, it may be my favorite little cubby system ever.

We each have a space...We each have a basket.

Marc has had the laundry room operational since September.

I created the laundry system recently...and today I got to see it in action.

In theory...the clothes get washed, they get folded, they get put into the correct cubby.

The kid grabs a basket.

The kid takes clean clothes up to room.

The kid puts away the clean clothes.

Then ...

the basket comes back down to the laundry room.

Wish me luck with this laundry system. I am optimistic.

She's packing heat!

Grace got a bb gun for Christmas. She and Marc are excited for the weather to warm up so they can spend more time in the back field hunting soda cans.

Digital Christmas Timeline...

These are the digital images of past Christmas photo's. I have all the others too...but that would require me to dig through large boxes of unorganized photos...and well, that isn't going to happen.

I'm not sure how the time has gone by so quickly...

I remember each of these as if they where taken moments ago.

Now...what kind of mother would allow her two youngest children to drink Kool-Aid before their annual Christmas tree photo? Hmmm... anyone?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Letter 2008

2008 To-Do List


  • Finish bathroom & laundry room remodel
  • Buy cool tools to use while remodeling
  • Finish basement remodel - Nope
  • Coach freshman football to an undefeated season
  • Organize a family vacation to Mt. Rushmore & Crazy Horse
  • Enjoy being in the 30's ... 40 is on the way in '09


  • Chauffeur kids to swimming, dance, 4H meetings, gymnastics...
  • Be a 4H leader for a sewing club
  • Become addicted to the Twilight series
  • Go to Pasadena to see the OSU Beavers play in the Rose Bowl - Nope
  • Continue to blog at
  • Get braces so you can look young at 20 year reunion


  • Run Cross Country
  • Give a speech at 5th Grade DARE graduation
  • Sell a 4H lamb without crying - Nope
  • Win 2 Reserve Champion ribbons at fair in sewing and cooking
  • Begin 749 different new collections
  • Win 3+ local art competitions


  • Start second grade
  • Win a Reserve Champion ribbon at fair in sewing
  • Show a lamb as a Jr. Showman
  • Enjoy a surprise 8th birthday party
  • Help mom cook dinner weekly
  • Sleep in at least one day this year - Nope


  • Go to Disneyland with Mom
  • Start first grade
  • Lose some teeth
  • Try to go a day w/o falling & getting hurt - Nope
  • Find your niche as a dancer in Jr. Jam
  • March to your own drum.

We may not have completed our 2008 list, but we had a great year and are looking forward to many blessings in 2009!



I love them.

They are beautiful.

They scare me, too.

A Gingerbread House

Grace has a way of touching people. She never forgets a face.

One special friend is 'Grandma Julie' from our church.

She is a retired Special Education teacher.

She has never been Grace's teacher, but she has always loved Grace.

A few years back she started a special tradition with Grace.

Grandma Julie bakes homemade Gingerbread Houses and invites Grace over to decorate.

She has a great time and consumes WAY to MUCH sugar,

but I am so pleased that Grace has her own special friends and traditions.

Some things in life won't ever be easy for this girl of mine,

but touching people will always be her gift I am sure.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A touch of Christmas

We are going with a 'less-is-more' approach this Christmas. In keeping with that theme, there are less decorations out, fewer ornaments on the tree and a downsizing of gifts under the tree.

I remember there were some tough times when I was young, I also remember the years when there were stacks of presents surrounding me. The greatest of my memories though are of being with my family. Those are memories I want to be creating for my girls. The presents they will forget, the time spent together, the laughter, the games, the creating...those are the memories that I want to last.

Here is a touch of our home:

Fisher Price Nativity on my first table runner.

This Nativity set has allowed my breakable sets to stay safe. The girls can move this around all they is one of their favorite things to come out of the Christmas boxes.

The table runner is ok. I am more critical of my work than anyone else would be. It is definitely nice enough to go on MY table but it wasn't 'gift worthy.' It was the first of six that needed to be sewn...each of them, one of a kind. Each of them a bit better than the one before.

This is a close up of my Christmas tree. The bird house was a birthday gift from my parents a few years ago. It is my answer to the question: "How do you fill a large hole in your tree?"

I stuck with my simple homemade or nature-like ornaments. Now I am looking for some small little decorative birds to sit on the branches. If the girls and I get another snow day, I'd like to make some bird seed ornaments too.

Santa's Key

When we moved to this house there was no fireplace. It was essential that we get a magic key so that Santa could get in to fill our stockings.

The green chair was my Grandma's chair. I can't bear to get it refinished because it was hers, and I don't want to change how it looks. The springs are broken and the underside sheds when you sit down on it...but I love it just the same. The can is also from back home. I found it in one of the old machine sheds. Grace made the candle decoration on top in her 4-H Wildlife Stewards club. She was so proud to bring it home. The Santa came from St. Mary's bazaar. I try to get a new Santa each year. There weren't any this year that grabbed my attention.

* * *

Even though I didn't put out all my ornaments and decorations this year, I looked at each and every one of them. I love that I have ornaments my girls have made, ones from my past students, some from friends new and old, or from places we have visited. I don't know that I could choose a favorite, but together they are a sampling of many happy memories.