Friday, December 30, 2011

Christmas Blessings!

It's almost been a week since Christmas.
I haven't had the time or energy to post.
Not that I've really been all that super busy.
Our house wasn't chock-full of gifts to find places for.
But I've been doing regular day-to-day stuff and playing with Eloise.
Blogging just hasn't been a priority.
I did figure I'd get on here and share a few photos from our celebration(s) though.
I believe we have somewhere around 450... yes...
FOUR HUNDRED AND FIFTY...
pictures between Christmas Eve and the 26th.
Wowsa!

I am not going to share THAT many... trust me!
But I'm sure you know what I mean when I say that you can never get those moments back.
Of course, you can never get ANY moment back...
but we wanted to capture as much of Eloise's first Christmas experience as possible.
She seemed to have a good time - though she really didn't know what was going on!

Christmas Eve was spent with my side of the family... eating a yummy brunch and then opening a few presents!


Later on that evening, we were able to visit with some friends who have a 3.5 month old little boy. Eloise wasn't all over him - which I was thankful for. She just tottered around and played, stopping now and then to point at the baby and talk some gibberish!


That is one big boy! He only weighs 4 lbs less than Eloise...
and is only about an inch shorter.
Do you remember that I just said he is
THREE AND A HALF MONTHS OLD!?

(Cory claims that if that kid doesn't go to the NBA or NFL...
his friend has failed as a parent!
Ok... he's just teasing... but seriously. Huge Kid.)


Christmas morning was spent at home.


It's so hard to get a good picture of "the kids"!

(That's the stocking I made Eloise!)


Cory's parents came to celebrate with us!
I think they enjoyed watching Eloise and Boo open their presents and play!


After 2 hours, Eloise was tuckered out.
We didn't end up making it to church because she needed to eat, sleep and get dressed.
They made our church service earlier than normal... so things got all out of whack!

Later in the evening, we went to Cory's parents house and had Christmas dinner!


And when we finally made it home... Eloise was zonked!


I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, celebrating the birth of our Savior!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Oh Baby! 11 Months!

Eloise is napping...
And though there are dishes to do, floors to sweep and laundry
that should be thrown into the washer....
I wanted to sit and post about our beautiful, sweet little girl!
Of course, that's what most of my posts are about anyway...
but as you can tell by the title:

Eloise is 11 months old today!!


I'm happy that she is growing and changing...
but sad that she isn't that little baby anymore!

Since she has been walking (taking her first steps in Oct!)
We have watched her become more and more independent...
more and more like a... toddler!

(This is her playing with a toy vacuum that our neighbors gave
her for Christmas... it's so cool.. I want to play with it! HA!)


If you've read any of my other "monthly" baby posts...
you would know that she's been walking for a couple of months...
She also says "Boo Boo" (our dog), "Mama", "Dah" (dad), "Bah" (balloon)...
and she also waves and says "HI" and "ByeBye".

We have this Santa by our Christmas tree...


Eloise will run to him and say "Hiiiii..." and then pat his beard.
You can imagine the surprise the one night when we asked her where
Santa was... and she ran to him, saying "San-tuh... San-tuh".
Cory and I looked at each other, probably with the most ridiculous
faces ever, because we were just flabbergasted!
Haha!

Anyway.

This girl loves to play with cars and things that roll!
She likes this alligator toy because it squeaks as it goes.


She also loves to play "chase" around our chair in the living room.
We could spend hours (and probably do!) running around the chair...
and she's smart... she will know when we are coming around and
she will turn and come "catch" us!

I have to admit, it makes me laugh hysterically when I can actually
startle her. So often she can anticipate us peeking around the chair...
but there are those rare moments when she jumps because we've
surprised her... and it cracks me up to no end!!

She still loves balloons...


It's adorable to watch her walk around with a balloon trailing her!

She still nurses... and she LOVES her cereal... but she's
not too keen on baby food. We still try to give it to her... and
we succeed after a bit of a fight... but she wants
to eat what we're eating. We do give her some, but
try to limit - especially since she can't have
dairy products yet.


Bath time is always enjoyable...
she loves the water!

She likes to break out and dance at
random moments. Even if it's when I'm singing...
(horribly, I might add)

She will break out in giggles for no reason.
Yesterday at the store, she started giggling when I was trying
to check out. The cashier laughed and said she wished
Eloise could stay with her all day and keep her spirits up!

We constantly get compliments on how well she is
behaved... but I know there will come a day that she'll
have a public tantrum. Oh, I do not look forward to that!!

Books are a must - which is why Santa is bringing
her, like, 10 for Christmas! Though she is very mobile,
she still likes to sit and read her Sesame Street books.
We have read them so many times... I don't even need to
look at the words!!


I could go on and on...

She is one fun, sweet girl!
Next month... I will probably gush even more!
But I don't even want to think about it just yet...
One day at a time!!

Christmas Blessings to you all!



Thursday, December 22, 2011

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Snug and Warm!


Instead of smiling for the camera, Eloise likes to pose with her "squinchy" face.
Such a silly little gal!

We are enjoying being snug and warm inside today, while it lightly snows outside!
(Though it's calling for rain later on)

We have a few more gifts to wrap and then I'll have to clean house
for Christmas guests! Other than that... I'm enjoying every
moment of life that is passing me by... Time sure does fly!

Christmas Blessings!



Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas Card Time!

Well, since I changed my blog around...
and used my Christmas Card pics in the header...
I figured I'd share them in a post too!

This year I had no time to make my own cards.
You can see my previous block print cards here and here.
I love making my cards. I don't know... there is just
something about giving & getting a card that wasn't just
picked up off of the store shelf - or taken out of a box.
Ya know?

Well...
Obviously with Eloise running all over the place...
I didn't trust myself to pull out the block printing supplies.

I bought a few boxes of cards... and started addressing the envelopes.
*SIGH*

But then, one night while we were trying to get a nice
picture of El in front of the tree to send WITH the cards...

This picture happened:


How could we not use that, right?

So we got online to Vista Print (who has some good deals)
and ordered our cards!

We included our own message:

"Eloise could hardly contain her excitement to wish you a Merry Christmas!"

AND...

Vista Print included a small black and white photo above the message...
FOR FREE.

So, instead of people seeing this hilariously silly picture
of our daughter and thinking she was a total goob...
we included this picture as well:


We were really happy with the price and the quality!
(They were like real cards - not photo paper)
And the shipping was timely as well!

To top it off, since I bought from them... Vista Print gave me some
discounts and I was able to order FREE return address labels
(Ok, so it was like $3 in shipping... but I saved like $8!).

This was the picture we chose to use for the labels:


They'll make a great gift for the in laws!

Hope you've sent your cards!
Christmas will be here before we know it!

**NOTE: I was not asked to review anything from Vista Print...
I just am a happy customer and wanted to share!!**


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Snowman Mallow Pops!

Seriously. How cute are these?


My mom and I are hosting a Christmas party for the ladies of my former employer. We have been doing it for the past 5 years or so... and every year we try to make some kind of goody for the ladies to take home with them. My mom came up with the idea of marshmallow snowman lollipops. Not sure if she saw the idea somewhere... or if it just popped into her head, but I thought I'd give it a whirl.


I had no directions...

I just took some giant roasting marshmallows
(you can do it with regular ones too)
...

skewers...

white melting chocolate
(white choc chips work... but tend to seize up pretty quickly)...

decorations!

After covering the marshmallows in the chocolate, I placed them on wax paper-lined cookie sheets, decorated and then put them in the fridge for about half an hour to set up.

My mom sent over some nifty shrink wrap (totally LOVE!)... so while they were chilled,
I used my blow dryer to shrink wrap them and then tied a little bow!


Great for parties and they would make adorable gifts!
And the best part - they were super easy to make while Eloise napped!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Little VW Birthday Love!

I'm late on posting this... but better late than never, or so I hear!

Saturday was my nephew's birthday...
he is a volkswagen lover, like myself...
and I like to think he gets that from me!
But I could be wrong!

Anyway... We couldn't be there on his actual birthday...
so I made cupcakes to take out the day before.
The icing looked pretty good - but eventually it all soaked
into the moist cupcake!

Cupcake Fail.
But they were delicious!

Here they were before they turned into a disaster!


Still not perfect... but cute anyway!

In my efforts to keep the VW love alive...
I found some vw birthday presents!


A vw bus pendant...
some vw pins...

and since anything that is authentic VW is super expensive,
I made my own vw t-shirts for him!


Fun, fun, fun!!

Happy (belated) Birthday Jax!!!

Another year older... another year closer to driving your own VW...
hehe!


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Decorating the Tree!

The Sunday after Thanksgiving, we decided to decorate our
Christmas Tree!

Growing up, we always had a real tree. I remember being poked and pricked as we decorated those trees, crouching under them to give them water, spilling it everywhere!... and oh, the sweeping of the needles!!
As much as I probably complained then,
I wish we could have a real tree now.

But, alas, we use a pencil tree that is in our living room all year anyway.
(Though it only has Christmas ornaments on it at Christmas time!)
It's just easier.

Maybe someday I'll get my real tree again, but until then, I'm ok with what we have!

We decided to let Eloise put the first ornament on!


I have a plethora of crazy Christmas ornaments!
Mrs. Potato Head seemed to be appropriate for Eloise!

Of course... she would rather have shoved
Mrs. Potato Head into her mouth...
so the decorating was short-lived.

Cory kept Eloise entertained while I put the rest of the ornaments up!


Now, the challenge is keeping Eloise away from the ornaments and presents!



(She already opened one.. haha!)

I can't wait to show you our Christmas cards!
Hilarious!
But that will have to wait.......




Tuesday, November 29, 2011

...

I can't think of a title for this post... because, well... I just can't.
So - sue me!

I just wanted to share a few pictures of the cookies I made for a baby shower this past weekend. They didn't turn out quite how I wanted. But when I have a 10 month old who is my main priority... and an icing thing-a-ma-jig that BROKE while I was using it. I did the best I could!



The theme was sea turtles. What a hard theme to come up with decorations for! Luckily, the mother-in-law took care of the little things... I made the cookies and some tissue paper poms to put on top of a mini diaper cakes.


(I had nothing to do with the rest of the decorations... hence the turtle erasers. lol!)

This picture doesn't do the cookies justice!


I am no photographer - unfortunately... so this looks more like a mess than anything. But it really did look nice sitting on the cake table! And the cookies were delicious, if I do say so myself!

Eloise had a good time... and was, thankfully, very well behaved!
Although she normally is anyway!


I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Double Digits!

Eloise is 10 months old today!
I can't believe we've come this far!


She is definitely a Daddy's Girl!
She happily wore his hat this morning before he
left for work! I can't keep HER hat on her head,
but she'll wear his BILLS hat, of all things!



She is quite the little ham!
She likes to make a squinchy face (above) while she
is eating. I haven't quite figured out why... except
she must know she's being cute!

My sister taught her to wave and say HI.
She also waves and says BYE BYE.

Yesterday, at a restaurant, I heard her saying "Hi".
It's not just a simple "HI."...
it's a drawn out "Hiiiiii..."

I turned to see her waving to a young guy
across the room at another table.
He and his tablemates were grinning
from ear to ear.

I do believe Eloise was flirting!
haha!


We have a bit of a picky eater.
Eloise likes weird stuff like squash...
but she isn't a fan of green beans or normal things.

She LOVES to eat with her hands though,
I think that's the key!

She is not just walking... she is RUNNING!


We have to watch her 24/7!
I can't tell you how many times she
has run into something or tripped over her
own feet only to bonk her head off of
the floor. It makes my
head spin!

But it's a lot of fun!
When Cory is home in the evenings,
we sit on the floor and he pretends to
chase her... and she runs, giggling, into
my arms.

Those are memories I'll keep forever!!

The funny thing.. is that we didn't encourage
her or work with her to walk. She took a couple
of steps in mid-October... and from then on,
she was determined to make it happen.
I'm a little sad, she is more toddler than baby!
But I am enjoying her stages... even if they are
happening sooner than I expected!


Her favorite toys are stuffed animals... she has
George and Gerry, Coby and Foo-Foo (bunny)
constantly in her arms.
Makes for a soft landing when she falls!!

She also loves to dance, "read", chatter and give High 5's!


Life is a blast... even if it is exhausting!

Happy 10 Months ELOISE!
We love you!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

...More Please?

I found this scrumptious banana bread recipe
from the Heavenly Homemaker site.
Let me tell you... I never knew that banana bread
made with no white flour or sugar could taste so good!
I am constantly going to that site to find great recipes!
If you haven't... you should check it out!

Cory was enjoying himself a piece of banana bread the other day...
and to my surprise, he shared a little with Eloise!


"More Please?"

Friday, November 11, 2011

... and again...

Well, it's been a week since I last posted.... AGAIN.

If I'm being honest, in the back of my mind, I do feel a little guilty... but then I do a mini reality check and realize that blogging is not really in my top 10 of important things to do.
Maybe not even my top 100.
And really?... life will go on without it!

But then there is that part of me, guilty feelings or not,
that does want to keep up with it when I can.

So here I am...

...to tell you that I have been swamped!
Surprise, right?


I have a walking 9 month old little girl.
Up until yesterday, I was getting a little lightheaded holding
my breath all of the time! Ok, maybe not quite lightheaded...
but I can't tell you how many times I sucked in a breath as Eloise toddled
past the coffee table. I just had visions of trips to the
ER and little tears streaming down a sweet little face.
Luckily, that never happened and I
finally cleared the coffee table off and removed it from the living room for now.
Just until El is a little more stable!

It's also been quite the treat trying to get that girl to eat
anything but mama milk and cereal!


We've had some success with bananas...
but I sure wish it wasn't such a struggle to get her to eat some baby food!!

Along with regular household things (dishes, laundry, cooking, etc)...
I have been asked to help with a last minute baby shower.


I'm talking about... the shower is on November 26th and
we just got the invitations out on Monday!
My friend has just been so swamped with work that
she kept thinking she had plenty of time... and well,
time got away from her!
It was a hustle and bustle for me on Sunday to
run to a store and try to find invitations... only to
come up with something plain jane.
I added the embossed baby footprints and
tried to hand-address the envelopes nicely...
but it is what it is! At least they got out
in the mail!!

And I'm also helping with decorations!


This is only a little of what I'm working on!
I am also going to be making lollipop cookies...
a diaper cake... and other stuff that
is just too much to blog about.

I'll post pics after the shower!

If I'm not working on baby shower stuff when Eloise
is napping... (or household chores)...
I've been reading.


Highly, highly, highly recommend these books!!

Also... on my plate...


A project.

As well as the many other things I have to work on...

Finishing the baby shower stuff (finishing decorations and helping to pull it all off!)...

My nephews birthday presents (a little project I need to finish up)...

Christmas cards! (It's that time of year again!)...

Work (church secretary stuff)...

Christmas party that my mom and I are
throwing for the place I used to work.
We have handled it for the past 4 years... this will
be year #5 (hard to believe).
So that is all getting planned and in the back
of my mind!

... and I have a couple of letters to write...
which will probably go on the back burner!!
Sorry gals!

So, I shall post again when I can!
Hopefully sooner rather than later!

Oh.. and I meant to post about this back in October...
Someone I know gave me some extra fabric...
so I made Eloise a car seat blanky.


It's been washed a few times, if you can't tell!
But it is the perfect little blanky to cover her in the car seat
without having a ton of blanket hanging over the edges
and dragging against the floor or what-have-you!

Ok--I'm off! I do hope that you will continue to
pop in now and then to see what I've been up to!!