Friday, December 31, 2010

Five Question Friday! 12/31/10

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! (Almost...)

I'm sitting here on Thursday night, typing to beat the, more to "beat the storm". I have a feeling that when I wake up in the morning, we may not have any internet service...there's an ice storm a brewin' and I'm very suspicious that it may take our internet with it.

Kind of exciting tho...I love winter storms! I love being snowed in and warm and happy...however, "warm and happy" are the key words to that scenario. If this storm knocks out our heat (which is electric, so a very feasible possibility...) I will not be a happy camper.

Anyway, I've gotta get this show on the road so I can get it scheduled to post before I lose my lifeline to the outside world...

Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog, answer them, then watch for the linky to appear tomorrow (Friday) morning!

Questions for Friday, December 31st: (Special thanks to Sharayha, Sandy, Pam,@Simply_BC, @gasfamily for their question suggestions! If you would like to be linked in a future Five Question Friday, just shout out your question suggestions to me in my communityor via twitter (@5crookedhalos)!

1. How long does your Christmas tree stay up?

2. Do you have plans for New Year's Eve?

3. Do you have any New Year's resolutions?

4. How did you spend New Year's Eve when you were younger?

5. What was the best way you've ever spent New Year's Eve?


1. How long does your Christmas tree stay up?

Well, I like to say we leave it up until the Epiphany, but really, we just leave it up until it becomes a fire hazard and that usually ends up coinciding nicely with the Epiphany.

This year, however, the Epiphany shoulda been last week, 'cuz our tree is long past "fire hazard" and more like, "ready to spontaneously combust at any second".

If you listen carefully, you'll probably hear the needles falling from the tree...shhhh...SEE??! Did you hear that? When we finally get this bad boy outta here, it'll likely be devoid of all it's needles.

Poor, poor neglected tree.

2. Do you have plans for New Year's Eve?

Well, technically, yeah. I'm supposed to work.

See, I made the exchange of a life time with a co-worker...she needed NYE off, I was dying for Christmas Eve off. I worked an 8 hour day shift on Christmas Eve...she worked a 12 hour night shift on NYE.

And I'd do it again in a heartbeat! Christmas Eve means everything to me, so (obviously) I'd switch it for anything!!

However, I'm hoping to not work the "night" part of that night shift...wish me luck on that one!

3. Do you have any New Year's resolutions?


My biggest thing is that I want to try to be more organized this year. Keep it together a bit more so that my husband doesn't, one day, come home from work, take one look around and lose his mind.

I'd hate to see him spend the rest of his years in a straight jacket...I mean, imagine how I'd feel about that! Knowing I sent him over the edge.

So, yeah...organization.

And, being a better mom...that's always one of my resolutions. I want to be the best I can be...and then strive for better, you know?

'Cuz they deserve it. My kids. They deserve MORE THAN the best mom I can that's what I aim for!

4. How did you spend New Year's Eve when you were younger?

I remember many NYE's spend with my big bro and my Gramp...we'd pull out the hide-a-bed and hang out and watch the ball drop.

I think I remember some kid booze in there too!

Those were the best...Gramp is the best. And, so is my big bro. And my little bros, too...but I don't remember them being around for those NYE nights, maybe they were just in bed!

Then, I remember my mom and dad and Gram coming home from their NYE parties with their fun hats and blowers and clangy things and THAT was the best too!

I try to recreate those NYE for my kids...but somehow, we always end up missing the New Year. We'll be counting down..."15 minutes til the New Year!!"..."8 minutes 'til the New Year!!"..."3 minutes 'til the New Year!!" and then suddenly we look again, and it's 12:02 and we're all..." NEW YEAR!!!!".

Lame, I know.

5. What was the best way you've ever spent New Year's Eve?

Well, I remember on New Year's was back in 2001...I was looking forward being married in about 6 weeks!!

( and might not want to read the rest. Just sayin'...)

So, the Mr. and I went out for a quiet date. We had a nice supper, maybe a glass of champagne or two (not enough to get drunk), then we went home...and, 'er...ahem...well, we "shook hands".

And, about 4 weeks later, I wasn't feeling so well. Kinda queasy, kinda blech. Really tired. (Do a little math...6 weeks - 4 weeks = 2 weeks prior to wedding. Oops.) So, I had the brilliant idea to pee on a stick before my bachelorette party.

Funny thing is, that test came back positive!

And, now we have her:

So, yeah...that is the best way I ever spent NYE...'cuz I got the most amazing daughter out of it!


Enjoy your celebrations tonight, my friends! Drive safe...and don't drink and drive! (Consider that a Public Service Announcement!) ;)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thursday Night 5QF Sneak Peek!!

Well, after last week's break from Five Question Friday, are you ready to jump back in?! Do you have New Year's plans?!

Here in MinneSOOOOta, we're just trying to not get frozen to the ground...quite the system of storms on their way here, so if you don't hear from me for a few days, could you please send help? And tell them to bring hot water!

Well, without further idle chatter, let's get the Sneak Peek!!

Reminder: This post...this very one that you're reading, is just the sneak peek! The linky post will be up tomorrow (Friday) morning! Watch for it. That's an order.

Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog, answer them, then watch for the linky to appear tomorrow (Friday) morning!

Questions for Friday, December 31st: (Special thanks to Sharayha, Sandy, Pam, @Simply_BC, @gasfamily for their question suggestions! If you would like to be linked in a future Five Question Friday, just shout out your question suggestions to me in my community or via twitter (@5crookedhalos)!

1. How long does your Christmas tree stay up?

2. Do you have plans for New Year's Eve?

3. Do you have any New Year's resolutions?

4. How did you spend New Year's Eve when you were younger?

5. What was the best way you've ever spent New Year's Eve?


See you right back here, bright and early tomorrow morning!

2010...a Recap.

As we get ready to welcome in the New Year, I want to wish all of you good tidings and may all your wildest dreams come true!

Looking back on 2010...I'll just go ahead and declare it a success! We've got what matters most...our health and each other. Our bank accounts may be a little slimmer (no thanks to that dear old oak that fell upon our home), but our hearts are full.

Here are some of my favorites from the past year...crazy, how fast it's gone!

It's been nearly a year since I took the time to Hold 'Em Close...if only for just a couple more minutes.

Remember Baby Girl, enjoying her reflection in the mirror?! I'd forgotten too...but it's priceless! Who Needs Real Friends...

My very first which I sing a certain favorite Zac Brown Band song (Hint: Starts with "Chicken" ends with "Fried")...humiliating, totally did it to be a good sport! Ugh. A vlog...

This one makes me giggle just remembering it...on a date, a "business-ish" date with Mr. Wonderful, and I may, or may not have NOT acted my age. At. All. *chuckle* Why I Shouldn't Be Left Out of the House...

Then there was the "Mother's Day Mania" that I hosted, one day of which was "Birth Story" day, and I told the (rather hilarious) story of my 19 year old self giving birth to my first born. Birth Stories...

My thoughts on what you should (or shouldn't) take to the hospital when you birth a baby. A Talkin' Shop post. What to Bring to the Hospital...

A delightful photo of melted ice cream and sunburned shoulders...the things MinneSOOOOta summers are made of! I Lied...

After our road trip to the Black Hills of South Dakota, I came up with a few tips when Traveling with Children!...

Should you ever find yourself needing to make an insurance claim, you should read this post first...just so you can, ahem, prepare yourself! Making an Insurance Claim...A How To.

A post in which you will learn just how fabulous my communication and conflict handling abilities are. *insert snicker here* The Groom's Dinner...

Boy, I really enjoy humilitaing myself! A photo...from when I was 13ish...holy bangs, batman!! BTW...I've got another humiliating photo that I'm contemplating posting. Don't know if I have the guts tho' involves me, in a swimming suit. For now, enjoy this one! Oh. Em. Gee...

And, saving the best for last...the most fantastic thing EVER! A sister. For me. Exciting News!!...


Did you write a "Year in Review" post? I'd love to read it!

Stay safe on New Years Eve!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


I've been doing a lot of thinking, lately.

I'm really, really contemplating whether 2011 is the year for me to become an maybe, possibly, perhaps embark upon starting a photography business.

Some days, I think I'm good enough to do it...then other days, most days, the self-doubt creeps in. I wonder, "Really? How could you think you're good enough to do this?!" and my concern about running a business begins to overwhelm me and then I shove this idea to the back burner again.

Only to have it slowly inch it's way back into the forefront of my mind...

So many questions...what to charge?

...what would I name my business? would I market myself?

...what would my "niche" be?

...can I handle the criticism?

...will I be able to keep my vision of "quality photos made affordable"? it worth it to take out a small business loan to get started? I organized enough to make it work? on earth will I ever wrap my mind around photoshop?

I love photography. LOVE it. I love snapping photos, adjusting settings, composing subjects and then downloading them and seeing what I've captured. Who I've captured.

And if I've captured the "real" them.

So...will this be the year?

We shall see...

Girl's Night In!

Last night, my bestie and her son came over to hang with us. It had been wayyyyyy too long since we'd gotten together, but the conversation and laughter quickly flowed!

I scored some friend points when I decided to make Carrot Gravy for us all for supper...not one of my best batches, but still delicious!

At one point, I may or may not have mentioned needing to take a trip to the bathroom...she laughed and said, "I'm so glad things never change! No matter how long it's been, things never change!"

Funny, how poop can be a source of bonding...

We were so busy chatting (and eating) and laughing (and eating) and drinking wine (and eating) and making sure that the Pal didn't "maim or injure" her son, Tigger (who's a swimmer on a small team that can't afford to lose any members to an injury!) that I didn't have time to take one picture.

Not a single one.

Fer dumb.

Girl's Night was awesome!

Excuse me now, while I go let out all of my pants...this holiday eating just keeps goin'!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Not quite what I was looking for...

Last evening, before supper at a local pizza joint, our children were enjoying the establishment's arcade games. Arcade games that may or may not include a "play 'til you win" candy crane game ("Ooooh, a crane!" Name that movie...).

Upon bringing me her loot, I was "yaying" Baby Girl's treasures when she held up a piece of candy.

She: "Can I have dis?"

Me: "What do you say?"

She: *looking curious* "Open it?"

Er...yeah. Not quite the answer I was looking for.

To Do List:
1. Vaccum gobs of pine needles from carpet.
2. Fold socks.
3. Teach Baby Girl better manners.

Monday, December 27, 2010

I held it...

Today, in mine very own hands.

I held it.

(Image courtesy

And it felt good. It felt right.

I need that D7000 ("need" being very, very loosely substituted for "want really, really, really bad"...)!!

And so the saving begins!

More Christmas!!

You know, prior to Christmas, while I was in the midst of my baking hoopla, I had grand dreams of putting on my very best food blogger hat and showing you all of my creations.

But then, I added 1 1/2 cups of butter to a recipe, instead of the 1/2 cup that it called for, and suddenly it dawned on me what a complete and utter idiot I was and who the heck would want my recipes anyway?!!

(And,, I was baking on the 23rd. Who wants Christmas baking recipes on the 23rd?!)

Anywhoodles...I don't know why I told you that.

What I really wanted to tell you, was about all the fun we had on Christmas Day! I was able to be "cut" for my shift at work (yippee!!!) which meant I got to spend the entire day with my family! (And, which also means I'll have almost 2 WEEKS off of work! Ahhhh...the joys of working part time!)

We started the day with Santa gifts...apparently the kids were awake for a good hour before we heard them...and that tells me that since there was no crack of dawn shrieking "MOM!!! DAD!! LOOK WHAT SANTA BROUGHT!!!", that perhaps Santa missed the mark this year. Oops.

In the afternoon, Mr. Wonderful's family descended upon our house...I love hosting. It makes me feel like my home is doing it's job...welcoming. His family is what you'd call...large! He is one of 10 children, most of whom are married and most of whom have to say Christmas gets a little crazy, is an understatement!

The decibels!!! Oh my word. I even had to escape for a bit...and that's saying a lot!

There was some impromptu karaoke:

The Christmas Day tradition that his side has carried down throughout the years, is the "Christmas Story" pageant. It's so cute seeing the kids get excited about who gets to be who this year!

Mary and Joseph:

The Angel Gabriel (or, should it be "Gabrielle"?!)

A wee little angel who kept asking, "Where's my wings?"

And, the Grande Finale..."Silent Night", in which everyone joins in!

Then, it was time to tear open gifts, after which, the adults play a gift stuff!!

Sunday afternoon, we took the kids sledding with the Mr.'s brother and sister and their families...Baby Girl was not impressed by being awoken from her nap to go play in the frigid weather:

There were quadruple decker rides (aka the "NutCracker", dubbed so by the unfortunate bottom rider, if you know what I mean!) ;)...


And nephews...

And rosy cheeks!!

And, my goofy BIL and SIL...they're totally awesome!

We had tons of fun! And, by "we" I mean, "they" I finally gave up on forcing fun upon Baby Girl and took her back to the van. Where we commandeered daddy's Droid and downloaded a bunch of fun games for her to play!

And now...back to reality.


See ya next year, Christmas!

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Does Christmas hafta go so fast?! We prepare for weeks...months, even...and then, in a few hours, it's all over.


Just like that. *snaps fingers*

A peek into our Christmas:

Fearing we were going to have a repeat of last Christmas:

Contrary to stretched arms and sleepy faces, the kids were rarin' to go on Christmas Eve morning!

The Grandkids!!

Baby Girl opened this present, jammies, gathered the one other present she had opened, came to me with burgeoning arms and said, "I wanna go home now, let's get in da van." Little did she know we had just begun!

My baby bro, with his Godson...taking good care of him.

I and my girl...

My favorite Christmas present (this would be my new, future SISTER!!):

My boy and my dad:

My grandpa, my aunt and my boy...the extended family arrived for "Gift Opening: Part Thrice" in the afternoon!

Okay...Christmas Day apparently needs it's own post! This post became entirely too photo laden! Stay tuned!!


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