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My New Year’s Goals

Hey Ho, folks!  Or should I say Ho Hey?  I love that song by the Lumineers, have you heard it? 

I am not the type of person to make New Years Resolutions.  They never stick and I forget about them before NY Day is here.  But this year I am feeling like I need to make a few changes in my life so I am making some goals for myself and our family.

First, I think we spend way too much money on eating out and I always feel like we don’t save enough money so to get us out of this spending and eating funk I am going to make a very bold goal and it is to not eat out at all for the entire month of January.  No lunches out, no suppers out.  I want to see how much money we can save and then put that money into our savings or my retirement account (which has been a bit neglected since I started staying home with the boys – scary!!!).  From there I want to limit the number of times we eat out each month.  I think 2 times out as a family per month is where I’m headed, maybe meeting Andy for lunch just 2 times per month. 

Next, I want to focus more on family time.  QUALITY family time.  We are together all the time but that time is usually focused around the tv at night.  So my goal is to shut the tv off one night a week.  On that night we will play games, play with Legos, maybe color or do a fun project.  Once it warms up and stays light out longer we will go outside and play ball and play in our garden.  Take walks, ride bikes.  Anything that focuses on us being together and actually being present with one another.

Another thing I want to change is about myself.  I want to be a better friend.  I am good about sending an email or quick text to friends to say hello but I don’t feel like I do enough for my friends.  I’d like to make an effort to call them up to actually chat and find out what’s going on in their life.  To make plans to get together.  Maybe drop off a small ‘this made me think of you’ gift.  I want to be a friend to others that I’d like to have. 

I hope that by posting these goals I will be held more accountable to them and actually follow through with them.  Keep me on track, friends!

One more thing – as much as I don’t like NYE I really like New Years Day.  It’s full of fresh beginnings.  One of my favorite things to do every December is take my old calendar down and fill out my new calendar with all of the important ‘carry over’ dates (birthdays, anniversaries).  It also gives me a chance to see all of the fun things we did over the past year (I write everything on the calendar or I forget to do it).  The new calendar looks so fresh and clean with just a few things written on it. It doesn’t take long to fill it up with our busy life again. 

To all of you NYE partiers, have fun and be safe!  See you in the new year!  Wishing all of you many blessings in the New Year.


Hello, How Are You?

Hello!  How was your Christmas?  Did Santa bring you everything you asked for?  We had a wonderful Christmas.  Spent a lot of time with family, had amazing food and the presents were plentiful.  The boys stocked up on toys, I need to purge the old stuff they no longer use. 

I don’t have anything exciting to share today but wanted to say a quick hello, how are you? and to let you know I’m still alive and kicking.

Talk soon!


Our Christmas

Well, it’s almost here and I feel like a kid again, anxiously and not patiently waiting for Christmas to arrive!  Thought I’d bore you with the details of what we do every year for Christmas. 

On Christmas Eve I pick up my sister and we go to church at 4:00 to wait for the 5:00 service.  If we all want to sit together we have to go early to get a full pew.  There were years as kids that we all sat by ourselves, my dad refuses to go early (Scrooge!).  So we sit there and sing along with the choir to the Christmas songs.  About 4:45 our families show up and then my folks walk in with the priest (ha ha, inside joke.  My dad seems to walk in with the bride more times than not.)  We all sit together and celebrate the real reason for the holiday then head back to my parent’s house for supper and gifts.  We always have something simple for supper, like soup or lasagna.  Anything that can be made ahead of time and ready to eat when we walk in the door.  After supper, dishes get piled up (not washed) and we get to the fun part – PRESENTS!!!  My mom swears she doesn’t mind washing up the mess in the morning. 

My niece on the left and nephew on the right, our two boys in the middle.


My sister, mom and I have a tradition of getting each other a funny pair of underwear every year. (My dad, getting in on the fun.  He’s so funny!)


We go around the room one at a time opening a present and keep going round and round until they’re all open.  We let the kids open theirs first, one at a time, then they can play with their new goodies while the adults open theirs.  About 9:00 we head home. 

Christmas morning I wake up Andy bright and early and then we lay in bed waiting for the boys to wake up.  They are usually up around 6:00 so we don’t have to wait very long.  Then we come out to the living room and get excited over the pile of gifts Santa left in front of the fireplace.  The boys open those then the four of us go through our stockings. 


After that I make breakfast (Farmers Breakfast Casserole, yum yum YUM!), then get back together in the living room to exchange gifts among the four of us.  After that it’s showers and getting ready to head out for the next family get together.

Lunch time is at Andy’s folks’ house.  We vary from year to year on what we have. Some years it’s a big feast (turkey, ham, the fixings) other years like this one we are going simple and having loose meat hamburgers, chips and dips, relish tray and dessert.  I am taking a yummy hot Hamburger Cheese Dip and Cherry Cheese Pie.  To me it’s not Christmas if I don’t get my Cherry Cheese Pie.  We used to take it to my Gma Wehr’s every year when I was growing up and now I take it to Andy’s family party every year.  I’m a stickler for tradition so if I don’t have this I’m a little grumpy.  So we eat, clean up (dishes are done here) and then head downstairs to the tree and MASSIVE amounts of gifts.  (The boys and our 2 nieces.)


First we go through our stockings.  A couple years ago I found giant stockings at Dollar Tree for $1 a piece so I got enough for everyone (plus one, knowing we might have another baby) and now we don’t have gifts sitting outside the stockings like we did before.  Everything fits.  So we go through those and everything in there is wrapped which makes it take a little longer. Andy’s brother always give lotto tickets so we take time scratching those off and complaining that no one won AGAIN. 

My in-laws prefer to give a lot of little gifts instead of one big gift. Makes the opening more fun because it takes longer.  We’ve been known to take 3 hours to open presents before.  Mainly because we each take a turn, we take breaks every 45 minutes or so and because my in-laws are s-l-o-w as molasses when opening their gifts. Whatevs, it makes Christmas last that much longer.  Then we go crazy packing everything up and picking up all the wrapping paper and breaking down all the extra boxes.  We load the cars and, if it’s almost 5:00, we take off for our last stop of the day – my Grandma Marie’s (last name Marie, not first).

At Grandma’s it’s a little different now. My Grandpa, the host with the most, passed away a few years ago so it feels a little off now.  But we go out there with all of my mom’s 5 siblings, spouses, families and their families.  A boat load of people, lots of noise, lots of laughter.  It’s wonderful.  Oh, and LOTS OF FOOD!  My gma makes the BEST cheese soup, a staple at Christmas supper every year.  She’ll also have another soup and some meat, usually a pork loin.  Then the rest of us fill in the gaps.  This year I’m taking BBQ Chicken Wings.  My gma also makes a ton of desserts, cookies and candies. She makes the most amazing homemade caramels.  I don’t like caramel in every day life, but these?  These are TO.DIE.FOR!!!  I can’t wait. 

Ever since I was a baby we’ve taken a picture of all the kids together.  Now that we’re all grown and have babies we take a picture of them now.  We also do this at mine and Andy’s parents with our kids. This picture doesn’t show all the great grand babies, some couldn’t make it last year.  My 2 are all the way on the right.


So after we all stuff ourselves and clean up the mess we gather up the littles and find a safe place for them to settle and unwrap a present from their Great Grandma.  There are so many people and kids it’s important to find a ‘safe place to sit’ so they don’t get trampled. Ha!  So fun.  Then we clean up the paper mess, make sure Gma’s house isn’t too messy then head home, usually about 8:00.  Most people have to work the next day so it’s not a late night.  But it is a wonderful night with all the family. 

There you have it, my Christmas.  We do get together with my dad’s brother and his family the Sunday after Christmas.  It’s a big meal and a few presents for the littles there, too (there are 5 now).  I am getting gag gifts this year for all of the adults.  My sweet little Gma Wehr used to give the boys (my 2 cousins) boxes of popcorn every year so I am giving all the guys popcorn and the gals hot chocolate.  Small and meaningless to most, to the rest of us we’ll get a kick out of it. She used to give my dad jeans every year and every year they were the wrong style and the wrong size!!! So the first year after she died I did the same thing for him, wrapped in some of her leftover paper and signed it ‘From Mom’.  We all got a chuckle, I cried and it was a great Christmas memory made.

Okay, dear friends, time to shut this down.  Up to 1200 words already.  Words go fast when you’re having fun, right?  I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and a most special day with your loved ones.  Hugs to all!


Christmas Link Up

Hey all!  Well, the prediction of 8”+ for us didn’t hold out, womp womp womp. Totally upset.  It’s still snowing and blowing, though, so we might end up with a couple of inches. At least things will be somewhat white for Christmas.  And the boys still got a snow day from school, they are watching a movie then going to throw on their snow gear and go outside to burn off some energy.

I keep forgetting to tell you all that I have joined the world of Keek.  Look me up at eywhair81.  I’m a Keeking maniac!  Ok, not a maniac, I’m no Mel after all!  (Holla, Friend Mel!)  I have a couple of Keeks up so go check me and them out. 

I thought I’d link up with Heather and Sarah today.  I love anything about Christmas and reading about other’s traditions.  Go link up and check out what everyone else has to say!


What's your favorite holiday movie?  It’s a toss up between White Christmas with Bing Crosby and It’s A Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart.  Classics and they make you feel good!

Do you have any special traditions?  We watch The Polar Express in front of the fire every year with the boys.  We go Tree Hopping (you can read about that HERE).  We go to church with my family every year on Christmas Eve, then head out to my folks’ for supper and gifts.  Plus all the other Christmas Day traditions I’ll write about tomorrow.

What's your favorite ornament or decoration?  See below.  This has my birth stats on it and I’ve loved it since I was little. 


Best gift you've ever received?  The My Little Pony Barn that Santa made for me and Mrs. Claus painted.  I gave it my boys, they use it for a tractor barn now.

Worst gift you've ever received?  2 years ago I asked for a desk calculator like you see bankers use.  My in-laws instead got me a giant calculator with big buttons.  Still can’t 10key it like you can a desk calculator.  Duh.

Favorite winter accessory?  BOOTS!!! I love my boots!

Real tree or fake?  I’d love a real tree but for now we use a fake tree that I got on clearance the winter before we got married.  That baby is 11 years old!

When and how did you find out that Santa was not real?  I don’t remember but I’m terrified someone will spill the beans to my 6 year old.  I don’t allow him to be alone with my 9 yr. old niece, she’s the type to tell him.

Go check out Heather and Sarah and link up so I can see your answers!

Here’s Dynamite, he must have been cold and needed to soak in a hot bubble bath when he got back from the North Pole last night!


Have a happy day!


Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!

Happy Wednesday!  We are in for a GINORMOUS winter storm tonight, I am so darn excited for the snow!!!  It helps to know that I don’t have to drive in it to get to work.  If I did I might not be quite as excited.  They are calling for at least 4 inches, possibly upwards of 10 inches!!!  We’ll have a white Christmas after all!!!  The only bad thing about this storm is that poor Brennan probably won’t have school tomorrow, which means he won’t have his class Christmas party. 

So tell me what you think about this Mayan calendar/the world ends Dec 21st thing.  Do you believe?  I don’t.  I am normally a worrier but this time I haven’t even given it any thought.  Plus some ‘numbers gal’ was on a show yesterday telling us that it’s actually a lucky day and has nothing to do with the world ending, just with new beginnings.  Ok, I’ll take that reasoning!  Especially since my husband’s birthday is the next day and I want to take him the Hawkeye game that we are both so excited to go to.  And I want to give him his gifts.  It about kills me to have to wait to give him his gifts every year.  Saturday, hurry up and get here!!!

That silly Dynamite was moving ‘snow’ yesterday, a.k.a. covered pretzel balls.  The boys were in love with it!


Yesterday I was a busy bee (the name of my 4-H club growing up!) and finished my homemade Christmas gifts.  Here’s my brother-in-law’s stocking stuffer (that will just be sitting next to his stocking, not actually being stuffed inside).


We live in Iowa, yes, we drink Busch Light! Ha ha!

I’m off to get a haircut now.  I think I’ll bring the length up a bit and possibly get some bangs.  I’m on the fence, but honestly, as fast as my bangs grow it won’t take any time to grow them back out if I decide I don’t like them.

I hope you have a wonderful day!  Enjoy the snow if you’re lucky enough to be getting some today/tonight/tomorrow!


Ornaments and Santa Weekend

Did anyone else have a hard time saying goodbye to their kids this morning?  The tragedy in Newtown hurts my heart so much.  My Aiden is in 1st grade, to think of 20 of his classmates lives being cut so short is truly unimaginable.  My sympathy and prayers go out to all affected by this awful day.

Hard to transition from that.  I guess I’ll show you some pictures of our weekend.

We made Cinnamon Ornaments Saturday morning.  They are really easy to make, just a 4oz bottle of cinnamon and 3/4 c. of applesauce.  Then roll out between plastic wrap, cut and bake at 200 degrees for 2 1/2 hrs.  Don’t forget to poke a hole in them to hang them (a straw works well for this).  These didn’t turn out as well as I’d have liked, next time I’ll remember to not roll the dough out so thin, I’m thinking that might help. 


That afternoon we went to visit the Big Guy.  He is such a great Santa, the boys had fun talking to him.


Dynamite thought it would be fun to t.p. our tree last night.


I am ready for Christmas.  I have all the gifts wrapped and under the tree.  My husband’s birthday is Saturday, I have one more present to wrap up for that then I’ll be done wrapping gifts until birthdays roll around in February.  One week to go!!!

Merry Christmas!


Friday Fun Day

Good Friday all!  This has been a weird week, I’m glad it’s about over. 

Last night was Aiden’s elementary school Christmas program.  I had a bad seat and couldn’t get any good pictures so you’ll just have to imagine how it looked.  They sang 3 songs together as a class then one song with the Kindergartener's and 2nd graders.  It lasted about 30 minutes, perfect length. 

Today at school was Reindeer Day.  Here’s Aiden in his antlers on the way out the door this morning.


Last night he came in our room about 10:45 saying he couldn’t fall back asleep.  He came in our room about 3 more times before Andy told him to make a nest on our floor, which usually does the trick.  Not this time.  At 2 A.M. I finally took him back to his room and told him to shut his brain off and go to sleep!  He must have because we didn’t seem him again until 6 this morning.  Poor kid, he does not handle lack of sleep well, I have a feeling he’ll be dragging all day. 

He is riding the bus home with his best buddies tonight for one of their birthday parties.  They are going to go to the bowling alley for supper and bowling.  We’ll go pick him up at 7.  He told me that he was so excited for H’s birthday that THAT was why he couldn’t sleep.  He was trying to figure out how to get a strike.  Silly boy!  I hope tonight he (and I) get some sleep!

Another Aiden story.  They studied Hanukah last week in school.  On Monday he told me that greedy people celebrate Hanukah.  Say what?!?  I said do you mean JEWISH people celebrate Hanukah?  Yep, that’s what he meant.  OMG.  I explained to him what greedy meant and to not make that mistake again!  Sheesh, the kid mixes words up in the worst way! 

Dynamite is sitting on another shelf today, no picture.  I’m glad there’s only 10 days left of this, I’m running out of fun ideas and getting bored with it!

I forgot to tell you a couple days ago that, thanks to Hubby Jack, I have made myself a button!  It’s up under my profile so please grab it!


Have a wonderful weekend!


Our Favorite Christmas Books

As you may know from previous posts, we are big book readers around here.  I wanted to share with you our favorite Christmas books.

This first one, The Snow Tree, is a neat book because each page has texture on it, perfect for little ones.  It’s about a bear waking up to a world of white and each animal brings a little piece of color that they put on a tree for the bear to watch over.


This one, The Nativity, is the story of Mary learning she is pregnant and her and Joseph going to Bethlehem where they have Baby Jesus.  It’s not overly religious, just some of the facts laid out in story form.  It’s an oldie, I had it when I was little.


Ahh, the Polar Express!  My favorite children’s Christmas movie!  And this book is amazing.  The pictures are awesome!  It’s a great story every kid should have.


Who Is Coming To Our House? is a neat book told from the animals’ perspective.  It’s in rhyme form, which is great for little kids (and me, I love stories that rhyme).


This book is a look and find book.  I bought it for Aiden when he was in preschool and he liked looking for all the pictures then.  Now Brennan does.  It’s great to take in the car, keeps him busy for 10-15 minutes at a time.


Ooo, this book is so neat!  The Christmas Magic is about Santa waiting for the magic time to come that is Christmas.  He gets himself and the reindeer ready for the big night.  It’s what I call a calm book, great for reading during quiet times or right before bedtime. 


Here’s a look at one of the pages inside.


Last, a classic.  The Night Before Christmas.  I love this version, the pictures are ‘old’, I love anything old.


On a different note, I was nominated for the Liebster Award by Miss Meg over at ‘This Is The Story Of A Girl’.  She is super duper cute, a weight-loss survivor and her blog is a fun read so go check her out!  Here are the q’s she asked the 11 nominees and my answers.

1. What is your all-time favorite food? Pizza.  Pagliai’s Pizza, to be exact. Yum, yummo, yum. Oh crap, now I’m craving it!!!

2. If you could live anywhere where would it be? About 20 miles east and 5 miles south of here.  Seriously, there is a piece of land my folks own that is my dream to build a house on.  Otherwise, somewhere in Paradise, as long as I can just snap my fingers and be back here again to see family whenever I want to.

3. What is your dream job? Being a wedding planner.  I’d die a thousand deaths if I could be a wedding planner.

4. What is your favorite season and why? It is a toss up for me between Spring and Fall.  When each arrives I love it so much and think “oh no, THIS is my favorite season.”  But then I remember what I love about the other one and decide its like choosing which of your children is your favorite – impossible.

5. What is the top thing on your bucket list? I don’t have a bucket list.  A few things I’d like to do in my life are travel to a handful of countries and states I would love to see someday, to zip line in Hawaii or somewhere equally amazing, and to have a spa day at some amazing resort where they pamper the heck out of me! (This would be why Andy calls me high maintenance!)

6. What is your favorite workout? I don’t have a favorite, but my goal is to become a runner next summer/ fall (after the baby is born).

7. Favorite song at the moment? I can’t answer this right now because currently I hate almost everything I hear on the radio.  It’s hormones, and it better pass soon!  I can still listen to my oldies, those don’t bother me…yet, but everything else makes my skin crawl.  This is torture for me because I love to sing in the car!

8. Favorite moment of your life so far? Hard to pick just one.  So many moments with Andy pop in my head which are always my favorite moments.  I guess to narrow it down to one I’d choose when we were driving out to Colorado for our honeymoon.  We were about 10 hours into the drive, tired and getting goofy and we had this long, crazy conversation about the game ‘The Oregon Trail’.  Don’t ask, but that is one of my favorite moments in my life.

9. Biggest regret? Not going to a University (Of Iowa!) and being a cheerleader for them.

10. If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be? I would change my lack of confidence and wouldn’t worry about what others think.

11. If you could change one thing about your spouse what would it be? I would change how poor his memory is.  I can tell the man something super important and he will forget it 5 seconds later.  I am constantly repeating myself with that guy, so super duper frustrating!!! 

Thanks, Meg, for nominating me!  Great questions, some were super tough for me to answer!

I had my 12 week check up this morning.  I have been panicking that I have miscarried the baby because I am still wearing my regular clothes (with the boys I was in maternity pants at week 10) and I just feel normal.  So I get in there and the MALE dr. (yikes for me!) tries to listen to the heartbeat and can’t find it!!!  I start to panic.  He gets the ultra sound machine in there and finally finds the baby and heartbeat, all the way on my right side and up a little.  The little pumpkin found a nice warm spot over there and wasn’t moving from it!  So luckily the baby is great and I am fine and we are on our way.  One more week till my 2nd trimester!

Dynamite is just sitting on a shelf today, didn’t think you would care to see a picture.  We’ll see what shenanigans he pulls tonight.

Till tomorrow,


Teacher Gifts

Hey there!  I’ve been a busy little bee making teacher gifts.  I found all of these ideas on Pinterest, love that little site!

For the boys’ teachers I made the notepad holders and put their names on the large pump of hand sanitizer.  And for Bren’s Preschool teacher helpers I made them each a jar of sugar scrub.  All super simple and best of all, inexpensive! 


We also bought the classroom gifts. For Aiden’s 1st grade classroom we got a set of Matchbox cars that included a motorcycle.  Apparently they only have 1 motorcycle in the classroom and the boys fight over who gets it, so now they will fight over the only 2 motorcycles in class. Ha!  And for Brennan’s room we got 2 puzzles (he’s the puzzle master, after all) and 2 books.

And of course they do an exchange between the kids.  Bren’s preschool is doing a book exchange, I LOVE this idea!  Wish they did it for all grades!  So he is giving a Clifford Christmas book.  And Aiden is giving a set of military guys with a motorcycle that lights up and makes noise (and yes, it is still under the $5 limit, which basically means it’s cheap crap and will break after playing with it one time).

Aiden did much better last night, hardly any coughing and definitely no breathing scares.  Phew!

Dynamite decided to be a little more tricky this morning and hide in the plant. 


And last, we have been trying to go for walks every night when Andy gets home from work.  We usually have about 30 minutes before it’s dark to get in some blocks.  It’s cold so I’ve been bundling up, here’s a pic of me pre-walk.


So off we go and guess who throws a tantrum – Brennan.  Long story short him and I did not go on a walk and I was ticked!  But I found out I can do some planks still!  So I worked on that and a few other moves that will help with my lower back pain I’m already experiencing with this pregnancy.  No walk but did do a little exercise, guess that’s a small win.

Happy Hump Day!


Thanks, Merry Christmas!

Good Tuesday afternoon!  Boy, what a day this has been!  It started this morning at 3 a.m.  I did the same thing when pregnant with Brennan, I wake up between 2 and 3 a.m. once or twice a week and it takes me 1-2 hrs to fall back asleep.  It is so frustrating, I just toss and turn.  So did that this morning and had just fallen back asleep when I hear Aiden run to the bathroom coughing and coughing.  But not your regular cough, more of a croup sounding cough.  I hit Andy to wake up and we ran into the bathroom.  There Aiden is standing at the sink panicking because he can’t breathe.  We both thought he was having an asthma attack.  It scared us to death!

I ran to the kitchen to grab him a cup of water hoping him thinking of that instead of how he couldn’t breathe would calm him down.  By the time I got back Andy had him breathing in through his nose and out through his mouth and he wasn’t panicking anymore.  We stayed there for about 5 minutes just having him breathe.  He had so much phlegm in his lungs and throat that he couldn’t even talk.  But by the time we went to the living room to sit up on the couch and calm down he could talk again.  So he slept leaning up against Andy for the next hour and we breathed in through our noses and out through our mouths to calm ourselves down.  So scary to think of driving 20 minutes to the ER with a scared 6 year old who can’t breathe! 

This morning he felt fine (he said) and wanted to go to school.  No fever and hardly any wheezing so off her went with strict instructions to call me if he has a coughing fit again.  This is how our little Aiden does colds, though.  Never this bad, but they all settle right in his chest.  When he was 3 months old and I had just started a new job (3 days in) my sitter called panicked that baby Aiden couldn’t breathe and needed to be rushed to the hospital.  She held the phone up to him and he sounded terrible, like a 90 year old man who has smoked his whole life.  So off I rushed to get him and it was just a cold and nothing they could do.  And by the time I got to him his breathing sounded much better.

So that’s how my day started and it just crazier from there.  Luckily now I’m home, groceries are put away, laundry’s going and I’m blogging.  All’s well that ends well, right Ma Ingalls?  (That’s what she always said to Laura and Mary.)

So, about today’s title.  Do you wish store clerks, bank clerks, waiters, anyone who waits on you this time of a Merry Christmas?  I always do and I always feel like I must be the only one who does because they seem to always light up like, “Hey, you’re right, it IS that time of year!  Thanks for spreading some Christmas spirit!”  Anywho, if you don’t I think you should.  It really perks people up.  I start on December 1st and go right through Christmas Day.

Our Dynamite is quite the gymnast today.


Merry Christmas, Friends!


I Had The Flu… And It Wasn’t Purty

Eck, who in the heck came up with the flu??  They should be taken out in the street and shot.  Or give the flu every day of their life.  What a way to ruin a weekend!  Didn’t go the the family wedding Saturday and barely made it to Aiden’s church Christmas program last night.  Luckily today I feel 98% normal again.  Now waiting for the other shoe to drop… who’s next?   Aiden and Andy are sure to get it, too.  The only good thing is that we know we won’t have it for Christmas. 

Please tell me you had a better weekend than I did!

Dynamite, that silly elf, has pulled another one of his shenanigans here.  He raided our Q-tips and made a snowflake out them.  Unfortunately the little one couldn’t keep his hands off and rearranged them before I could take a picture.  So here’s what it looks like now.


Have a great Monday!



Yahoo, it’s Friday!!!  We have a fun weekend ahead of us, I’m so glad Friday is finally here!

Here is my H54F list:

1. Bren is feeling a lot better.  The last time he got sick was yesterday morning at 6:00, but he just wasn’t himself all day.  Then last night he spiked a fever of 102.  After a full night’s sleep he is much, much better today! Still not eating but he wants to drink so that’s good!


2. My husband is home from his 3 day conference.  I hate when he’s gone and always so happy when he gets back.  3 days is nothing compared to what military families go through, I know, so I shouldn’t whine but I do.

3. I have felt so much more like myself this week and am nearing the end of my 1st Trimester so that is something to celebrate!

4. Today is Santa Hat day at Aiden’s school, he was so excited to get to ‘dress up’ today.


5. Monday I finally got my new car!  A black Chevy Traverse.  I love it!  It is so roomy and comfortable!  I had my old car for 7 years, it had 162k miles on it!  It was just a matter of time for something to start going wrong with it and the poor thing wasn’t really worth anything so we decided it was time to treat ourselves to something different.  Plus with the baby coming we needed more room. 

Happy weekend to all!


Thursday Double Post

I am doing a second post today because this morning I forgot all about Lora’s link up about go-to recipes.  I posted this one before so I’m cheating and just giving you the link, but it is seriously a winter-time go-to for our family and I love it!  Click here for the recipe for Chili Over Fritos.

Have a great evening!


My New Year’s Rant

Does anyone else dread the end of the year?  I can’t stand the thought that another year is gone and we are that much closer to the end.  End of what?  IDK, our life? The world?  Whatever it is, I hate it.  (Am I getting too deep here?)

I hated celebrating New Years Eve growing up.  I remember one year, I was probably 7 or 8, I went to stay the night at a friend’s house.  She had an older sister who had a friend over too.  They were hell bent on staying up and ringing in the new year.  I, on the other hand, was ready to pass out and miss the whole thing at about 9:00.  So in it came, and I was devastated!  They were all hooting and hollering and whooping it up and I was in the bathroom crying because another year was gone for good. 

Every year I try to catch “The Year That Was” segment at the end of the evening news. It is so damn depressing!  Yea, they might show a few good things that happened, but really its all clips of death, destruction and all the celebrities that passed away that year.  Ugh, where’s my box of tissues?  But I’m a gluten for punishment and watch it every.damn.year.

And now they keep advertising all the year end shows.  Like Barbara Walter’s “The Most Influential People of 2012”, “The Year In Review” on GAC, etc, etc, etc.  Ugh, the tears I will shed!!!  Why must the constantly remind me the end is near?

One more story of how awful New Years is for me.  About 8 years ago we went out with another couple and a single guy.  We started the night by hitting up Carlos O’Kelly’s and stuffed ourselves silly.  The single guy had Pasta Diablo (you’ll want to remember that for later in the story).  Then we went to this little hole in the wall bar in a tiny little town and they all drank themselves silly.  I didn’t drink, I was the DD.  So around about 2 a.m. we decided we needed to leave (they were all smoked so it was definitely time to leave).  We head out to the car and realize the single guy is not with us.  After finally finding him inside and wrestling him outside he breaks away from us again and we find out just how trashed he really is.  Back in one guy goes to find a trash bag from the bar so the single guy has somewhere to get sick (we’re driving my car, btw).  So I drive, single guy up front by me and the other 3 in the back.

We get on the road and dippy-do starts heaving into the trash bag.  I DO NOT handle vomit AT ALL.  So down my window goes, never mind it’s about 10 below zero that night.  So I’m flying down the interstate at 68mph with my head hanging out the window, singly guy puking up his guts (and the rum and coke, and the Pasta Diablo) and the 3 in the back huddling together because they are so cold.  We get to the house and I bail.  The guys help Mr So-Drunk-I-Can’t-Walk into the house and then come back out to get the bag of puke.  Guess what – there was a hole in the bag!!!  They decide to wait till the morning to clean it up. 

Remember when I said it was below zero that night?  Well, vomit freezes.  And it did, right to the carpet of my car floor.  My husband used an ice scrapper to pick at it and break up the chunks and clean it up.  My car smelled like rum and Pasta Diablo for months after that.  So that’s another reason I don’t like New Years Eve.

So, how do I celebrate now?  I sleep right on through it.  Yep, I’m a party pooper!  We go to bed around 11 (have to watch New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, after all) and get a good night’s sleep and wake up on the first day of the new year feeling just fine.  Honestly, I don’t understand why anyone wants to start the new year feeling so crappy! 

So that’s my bitch-fest about New Year’s Eve.  Hope I didn’t make any enemies!

And now for where Dynamite landed last night.


I guess Aiden won’t be playing his DS today! Ha ha, sneaky Mom (and Elf)!

I’m home with a sick little Brenner Bug today.  He has the stomach flu.  So far so good, keeping my fingers crossed I won’t have to do anymore flu laundry!

Have a great day! Tomorrow’s Friday!!!


Tuesday Night Fun

Are you like me and watch the same Christmas shows every single year?  And if you miss one you feel like something’s not right in the world?  I don’t think I’ve missed a year of watching Charlie Brown, Frosty, Rudolph or Garfield.  I love them all and HAVE to watch them year after year.  Last night Rudolph was on so the I made some hot chocolate and the boys and I cozied up to watch.


We do the same thing with movies but are very far behind this year.  With me being so tired from baby I can’t stay awake long enough at night to watch any of them.  Sounds like this Sunday is supposed to be cold and snowy (yay!) so I think we’ll cozy up with a movie or 2. 

We’re heading to a friend’s house this morning for a play date.  Bren needs to some buddy time…and so do I.  Girl talk, please!

Here is where we found Dynamite this morning.


Don’t look at the crumbs on the table, I hadn’t washed it off after breakfast yet when I took this.  Ew!

Have a happy day!


Swag Swap Reveal

Hey all!  Have any of you ever done a swag swap/blog swap before?  This was my first one, hosted by Southern Girl Gets Fit.  She posted about hosting it and if anyone was interested to send her their name and answer a few questions.  She then paired us up with another blogger and sent us their info and address.  We had to spend under $30.  My partner was Karie over at Carrot Cake and Jeans.  Because this was my first go-round I wasn’t sure how big to go or really what to put in her package, so I winged it.  I received my box from her a couple days after I mailed hers out and realized I totally bombed this one!  She sent me the most amazing package with so many AWESOME gifts in it, I totally jipped her!  I feel so bad, but hopefully if I do this again I’ll know better.  Sorry, Karie!

So the box came on a day Bren was home with me.  We were both so excited to get a package delivered that we busted right into it!


Look at all the wrapped gifts!!! Bren was like “JACKPOT!”  We each took turns unwrapping gifts and here’s what was in them.  (BTW, Karie, I loved that wrapping paper!  Where did you find it?)


First, she wrote me the sweetest note, it totally made my day.  Then I just started oo-ing and ah-ing over everything!  Those socks are so me, I have about 6 pairs of ‘fun’ socks that I wear because I think they are more cheery than plain ol’ white socks, especially in the long winter.  Stickers for scrapbooking, awesome!  The bath gel smells amazing!  And these gloves!!! I put them on and instantly felt like Madonna!!!  Can you see the lace on them?  So pretty!


This book is fun to read.  It’d be a fun gift to give to a new mommy!


She sent me her homemade, home canned applesauce and salsa!!!  Both are delicious, btw!  The neat thing about this swap is meeting someone new who has similar interests to you.  I can veggies, too!  So neat to meet someone else who does that, we are so few and far between these days.


And this gorgeous ornament!  Bren hung it up right away on the tree. 


I’m saving my dark chocolate for this afternoon, no one’s here to have to share a piece with!  (I’m mean like that!)  Everything in my package was so much fun to receive, thank you so much Karie!  If you’ve never done a swap before give it a try, it’s a great way to get to know another blogger!

And I can’t leave without showing you where Dynamite landed today and telling you I’m a bad mommy and forgot to move him last night.  The boys got up this morning to look for him and I was able to usher them back to their rooms before they spotted him in the same spot as yesterday. Then I moved him.  I need to make myself a note somewhere I will see it every night so I don’t keep forgetting!


Do you see him??  You can spy his little hands to the left of the books.  It was a good hiding spot, they really had to look for him today.


Here’s another view. 

Have a fabulous Tuesday!


Another Busy Weekend

Phew, what a weekend!  It was jam packed full of fun, family and friends!  Doesn’t get better than that!

Friday I received a package in the mail for the Swag Swap I did, hosted by Southern Girl Gets Fit.  My partner in crime was Karie over at Carrot Cake and Jeans.  I cannot tell you how excited I was to get this box!  The stuff inside was A-mazing!  But I am waiting till tomorrow to post on that because I have so much to post and show about the weekend.  So stay tuned, you’ll want to see all the goodies I got so you can be jealous – ha ha!

So back up to Saturday.  My mom came over and we made Christmas goodies all morning.  We made caramels, peanut butter fudge, haystacks, peanut clusters, sugar cookies, peanut brittle, Ritz peanut butter sandwiches, covered pretzel balls and Oreo truffles.  Can you say sugar and fat?  My sister couldn’t make it or we would have had even more stuff!  Oh my!

The boys were big helpers with the sugar cookies, here they are helping cut them out.


The flour on Bren’s nose cracks me up!

Saturday night we went to the BIG big city to visit friends.  The Big 10 championship game was on so we watched that and had some yummy food.  The host’s made some amazing chili, supposed to be getting that recipe from the hostess soon.  The Wisconsin Badgers totally CREAMED Nebraska’s Huskers (yahoo!) so was happy with the outcome of that game! 

And yesterday.  My mom’s family started what we call Tree Hopping 19 years ago.  The adults (my aunts and uncles) were sitting around 19 years ago talking about how they decorate their houses for Christmas but no one sees all their handy work so they created Tree Hopping.  We go from house to house checking out the decorations and loading up on snacks and beverages at each house.  It is an entire afternoon of family togetherness.  I just love it and look forward to it every year!  In my mom’s family there are 5 siblings who take part, plus my Grandma’s house.  Add in all the grandkids and great grandkids and we have full houses!  Yesterday was 60 degrees (totally un-Christmas like, boo) but it was great because the kids could play outside so the noise level wasn’t quite as high as it could have been. Ha!

And finally, our elf Dynamite made his first appearance Saturday morning.  Here is where we found him this morning.


Hopefully tonight Dynamite will be a little more creative in his hiding spot.  I think he likes to start off small so the boys can get their finding skills warmed up. 

Well Friends, time to get the boys ready for the day.  I’ll see you tomorrow!