Archive for December, 2010


ella’s nativity

Don’t you love gifts made for you by your kids at school?  You never know what you are going to get!  This year Ella brought home this handmade nativity.  It’s sweet, in a “psychotic Mary and jagged tooth Joseph kinda way.”  It looks like her teacher saw her “beautiful parents” and decided to draw baby Jesus’ face before it turned into the Addams family.  But, I love it and I’ll look forward to putting it on display every Christmas (until Ella begs me not to put it up anymore!)

Ella’s Christmas gift to us

fort worth botanical gardens

We took a quick long, (quick as in 1 day, long as in loooong drive with a 2 year old) trip to the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens today to take our family portraits with a photographer from Minnesota, (who is also a blogger with 20,000+ followers(!) and the link I gave you takes you to a sneak peek at one of the pictures from today), who was in town just to shoot portraits.  When I get those shots, I will definitely post, but for now, here are a couple pictures I snapped after our session was done.

lots of fall foliage!
my Ella
my Rilyn
James took this one obviously!
can you spot Ella?!?

drawers full of personality

Rilyn and Ella share a long desk.  One side of the desk is Rilyn’s drawers and the other side-Ella’s.  I wonder if you can guess which drawers are Rilyn’s and which are Ella’s.  😉 (Hint: the answer can be seen on one of the papers in the drawers.)


ice skating

Last night we had my church volunteer Christmas party. (I teach in Ella’s Sunday school class). We got to bring the girls ice skating and they had a blast! James and I had very tired arms afterward though, because we had to hold them up the whole time to keep them semi-balanced!
Here is an example:

Rilyn and James
Ella and James
Rilyn getting brave!
Ella, Julie, Rilyn
Ella getting brave as she skates to James.
We had so much fun!

Both girls have asked numerous times today when they can go back ice skating. Rilyn said she is a ‘pro’ now and Ella is very proud of herself because she skated 3 feet to James. 😉 Ella did tell me at the end that her feet were bleeding and when I took off her skates she had a nasty blister!


Sentimental Saturday-Ella’s Christmas’ (preblogging)

Ella’s first Christmas 11 1/2 months old-2006
Santa baby
Ella at Oma’s house-2006
Ella’s 2nd Christmas (notice my shirt, I was pregnant

with Asher!)


flashback friday-rilyn’s christmas’ (preblogging)

Texas does everything big.


6 1/2 months old, 2004
Rilyn’s 2nd Christmas 2005
she looks like an elf!
For me?!?  2005
Rilyn’s 3rd Christmas 2006
Rilyn with Ella at grandma’s house 2006
Rilyn’s 4th Christmas, 2007
the year of getting dress-up clothes! 2007

where’s the line to see Jesus?

I wish that sweet line in my post title was said by one of my children at the mall when seeing the line for Santa, but nope! I stole it from a somewhat cheesy song (but the message is good!).  I’ve explained before that we don’t celebrate Santa at our house.  I found a great blog post from Noel Piper, (John Piper’s wife) about why they don’t do Santa either, and she writes way better than me, so check it out!

Even though we don’t believe in Santa at our house, I don’t try to hide Santa from them!  After all, fairy tales are fun to read and imagine!  So, off we went to take our annual Santa picture.  My two girls were prepped NOT to say “You aren’t real” or anything of that nature around other kids in line.  When it was their turn to take a picture, they stood right next to Santa, said not a word, smiled and then they walked away.  The guy next in line asked me, “Don’t your kids want to tell Santa what they want for Christmas?”  I just smiled.  I guess my kids had better things to do then talk to some guy they don’t know about something he doesn’t care about!  (I didn’t say that of course!)

No crying this year!  But Asher looks a little confused… 
I think I like this guy!

journey to bethlehem

This is the third year we have made ‘the journey to Bethlehem’.  The girls look forward to it each year and Rilyn said it is our ‘tradition’ now.  This year, we stayed close and went to a local church.  (Last year we went to Burnet.)
Ella said afterward, ”I closed my ears when King Herod was talking because he is a bad king!”  Asher loved all the animals there. Rilyn hung on every word that was said during the ‘journey’ and said, “I had SO MUCH FUN tonight!”
I didn’t get ‘the shot’ tonight which was the girls kneeling in front of the nativity scene, but I have a good excuse.  They used a real baby for Jesus, and I didn’t want to bother the baby with my bright flash who was being rocked gently to sleep.

Listening to King Herod
Our ‘guide’ asking the inn keeper where Mary and Joseph were staying
one of the shepherd boys
This donkey is only 4 months old!
I think the goat liked Asher too!

my other hobby

In case you’ve noticed, I’ve haven’t posted any online offer rewards in awhile (since June) and that’s because they are getting harder to do, (I blame the economy!)  I have been doing some though, and today I FINALLY got my $1000 check from one!  I started this offer in August and spent $115 to complete it!  So now I’m up to $5,000 in rewards/gift cards on my ‘other hobby!’  I wish I could go out and spend the money  on a new lens for my camera, but the smart thing to do is put it away for our 10th anniversary trip to Hawaii in June.  I have $500 coming in January from another online offer too!  🙂

My $1000 check all the way from Canada!

*If you have already done online offers and are looking for some more, this website puts up links of legit (because some can be scams!) offers every month.  Scroll to the end of the post to see the “Thanksgiving Link List.”

**If you just want more information on what exactly online offers are and how to get started, click here, and then go to the links list above.  (Or just call/e-mail me!)  🙂

And while I’m on the topic of free stuff, I will just throw out there again-Swagbucks.
Swagbucks is like Google, just search what you normally search, and earn ‘swag bucks’ sometimes. I have earned $80 of Amazon gift cards since March just by searching on the internet. I make Swagbucks my home page so I always remember to use it! So easy!
Search & Win

My photography business!

December 2010