Friday, December 30, 2011

Five Question Friday!! 12/30/11


How is it that it's already been a week since Christmas? Did I not tell you this was going to happen? And tomorrow it will be June and the next day October and pretty soon we're doing it all over again.


Just watch. That's exactly what will happen.

Anyway, Welcome to Five Question Friday!! You've come to the right place if you want a fun, easy post or if you've suddenly discovered your muses have run off to join the circus after the craziness of Christmas.

I decided to vlog it today...haven't done a vlog in a loooooooong time and wasn't feeling like tappity tapping it out, so, you're stuck with 6 minutes of me talking to you. I tried to keep it to 4, but I couldn't. Not with the display of the oldest "member" in my closet and interruptions from my Babe.

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

Oh, and remember (pay close attention...this is the important one)...HAVE FUN!

Questions for Friday, December 30th: (Special thanks to @KatieB38, @amy_mcmommy, @gasfamily, @trooppetrie and @ByGollyMsHolly for their question suggestions! I would love to link you in a future 5QF, so come on over to my community or watch for my Thursday afternoon shout out for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos me and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

1. What's the oldest piece of clothing in your closet?

2. How many random blog readers have you met?

3. Do you let your kids stay up till midnight on New Years Eve? (Or, if you don't have kiddos yet, did you get to stay up until midnight as a child?)

4. What are the gas prices where you live?

5. What is one resolution that you know you should do but are too afraid to try?

And my answers (I apologize if the words don't match my lips...I don't know how to fix that!):



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So, raise your hand if you actually made it all the through to the end? Have a wonderful weekend...and a safe and Happy New Year!






Thursday, December 29, 2011

Thursday Night 5QF Sneak Peek!!


5QF Sneak Peek at 2:30 in the afternoon?! Unheard of! I must be ill.


Wait...did you know that "ill" is the new "cool". As in, "those shoes are so ill"? At least that's what my brother says. Weirdo. (Hi little bro!)

Still recovering from the Christmas mayhem. We have been non-stop since Christmas Eve...and it won't end until this weekend is over! Craziness...and I wonder why life goes by so quickly!

Okay, so...sneak peek time.

Welcome to Five Question Friday!! You've come to the right place if you want a fun, easy post or if you've suddenly discovered your muses have run off to join the circus after the craziness of Christmas.

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

Oh, and remember (pay close attention...this is the important one)...HAVE FUN!

Questions for Friday, December 30th: (Special thanks to @KatieB38, @amy_mcmommy, @gasfamily, @trooppetrie and @ByGollyMsHolly for their question suggestions! I would love to link you in a future 5QF, so come on over to my community or watch for my Thursday afternoon shout out for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos me and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

1. What's the oldest piece of clothing in your closet?

2. How many random blog readers have you met?

3. Do you let your kids stay up till midnight on New Years Eve? (Or, if you don't have kiddos yet, did you get to stay up until midnight as a child?)

4. What are the gas prices where you live?

5. What is one resolution that you know you should do but are too afraid to try?

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Alright...see you in the morning!


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Christmas Lanterns


A couple of months before Christmas, I had read somewhere that if you have had a major life change in the past year (death, divorce, move, etc.) that you should create a new tradition for the holidays. Something to look forward to in the (in our case) absence of a loved one.

Knowing how hard it was going to be on everyone to not have Verd at our Christmas this year, I thought "We have to do something new.". As I pondered what new tradition we could start, the only thing that kept coming to mind were the Chinese lanterns from "Tangled".

To be honest, I didn't even know if they were real or not. I mean, I saw them on a cartoon, for Pete's sake! So, one night I turned to Google and sure enough, there they were. With an explanation of how they work (hot air balloon theory).

I wasn't sure how the rest of the family would feel about it, or if anyone had something else planned, so I checked with them and got a resounding "YES!!"! And the ordering began.

After a quick "trial run" after our Christmas dinner, we determined that there was no way in God's green earth (or, brownish green without a hint of snow anywhere winter where are you no I didn't have a white Christmas thankyouverymuch) that we were going to be able to light them off all at once, like I had envisioned and dreamed up to perfection in my mind.

We had 52 lanterns. With about 1/2 of those "belonging" to the 1o and under crowd. We learned that the flame gets rather large and "adultish" and so we hatched "Plan B"...we adults/big cousins would help the littler kids send theirs off then get right to work on ours.

And it went off without a hitch. Soon, lantern after lantern after beautiful lantern were floating off into the darkness.


Seriously a beautiful and touching moment, knowing we were lighting them off in memory of such a wonderful man, who we all miss so much.


What follows are some of my favorite photos...love the memories we made, and the tradition we have started!


Probably my favorite photo...ever! Look at those eyes...



And, my SIL...the last to release her lantern...



We miss you, Verd. You may not be with us in body, but you are with us in spirit...and you will never be forgotten!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Lantern Sneak Peek...


I said I would. Wait. No I didn't...I said maybe I would. But I'm gonna.

Yes, at 11:30 pm, but still!

Okay, here is one of my favorite photos...the Mr. took this with his phone. I was *this* close to not having any photos of it...I forgot my camera back at the house, but lucky for me I have a strapping husband who was willing to jog the jaunt back to the house to get it.

Me? I would've died 17 steps into that jog and then, so sad, instead of "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer" it would've been "Mama Had a Heart Attack Jogging Home For Her Camera", not quite the same ring to it, but still just as tragic as grandma and her reindeer accident.

So, thankfully, my husband and his musculature saved the day and we DID indeed get photos. Lots. And they're good ones.

And I'm so glad we did this.

Here is your sneak peek...my boy and his lantern:

More tomorrow...

Wow.


So, does anyone else feel like Christmas comes and goes so fast every year? Seriously, it won't be long and we'll be preparing for it all over again only to have it *POOF* be over in .073 seconds like it is every year.

One of my friends on Facebook posted something that made me smile...she said, "Merry Christmas! Remember, Christmas is only just beginning...the three kings are on their way!"

I loved it! It was a fresh new perspective for me and made me feel like I CAN still enjoy the Christmas season!

Only then, I got hit with some sort of tummy bug and totally took away and all desire to enjoy ANYTHING except for my bed and sleep. 24 hours later though, and I'm as good as new!

I can NOT wait to show you our lantern release. CAN. NOT. WAIT. But, that deserves a post all of it's own. It was awesome. Christmas Day with the Mister's side was fabulous. Emotional, but wonderful. Lot's of laughter amongst the tears.

Oh, and...I got a really fun gift from the hubs! Wait, let me get it so I can show you. Hold please...

Okay, I'm back...didja miss me? Gosh, I could've at least played a little Muzak for you while I was gone. What kind of a blog hostess am I?

Anyway...this is my fun present:


I am so excited...but I feel guilty. I'm guessing that the tickets are fairly spendy...and "fairly spendy" isn't in the budget right now. So, we'll see if it actually happens...but SO FUN!!! if it does!

In other news, you know The Pioneer Woman? Perhaps you've heard of her? ;) And, if you've heard of her, chances are you know of the wonderful and extremely popular giveaways she has on her blog? You know, the ones with 30,000++ entrants every time?

Guess what?! One of my friends WON one of her giveaways!!! She Facebooked last night (Hi Ang!!) about how much fun she was having with her new Nook and I feel sorta like I know someone famous. I mean, winning one of those giveaways is like winning the lottery!

Okay, so that's it for now. I need to go replenish some of the fluids I lost yesterday...and no, I didn't vomit, so YOU guess where I lost fluids from. Grody, I know.

See you soon! Maybe I'll even give you a fun little sneak peek at the lantern release before the post? Yes? No?

We'll see!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!


In the hustle and bustle of our celebrating, I just want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas! I hope you are able to enjoy today amidst the craziness that surrounds Christmas!

Happy Birthday, Baby Jesus!!


Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Almost Christmas!


So much to do, so much to say, so little time to do it!

A snap shot (or so) of our busy last month:

Piano Recital(s):


Dance Program:



Christmas Program:




Photoshoots:


Christmas Parties:


And now, I'm off to chop, stir, mix, saute and combine in preparation for tomorrow so that we don't show up an hour late to my parent's and make everyone mad at us and say a very cheerful, "Merry effin' Christmas" to one another like we have in years past.

Or, wait. Maybe that was just me.

I will be back for more Christmas good wishes tomorrow!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Oh boy...


Am I exhausted. Three late nights in a row coupled with early mornings, multiplied by Christmas frenzy, heaped with teenage angst?

The perfect making of a Merry Christmas Meltdown. Which is what happened tonight.

Things have been...stressful here, of late. Not bad, not good, just stressful. Then, I was sticking labels on our Christmas cards and felt sucker punched when I saw two labels that were missing names.

To address our cards to just "Grandma" and to just "K.", felt so wrong to me. So...heartless. But it's reality. It's reality that leaves me with a heavy heart and misty eyes.

On a positive note...I'm almost done wrapping presents! I thought I WAS done, but then I discovered another present and remembered that there is another in the van. Ooops. But, THE END IS IN SIGHT!

And now...as I've been burning the candle at both ends, my flames are about to meet. And snuff each other out. I need sleep. Long, deep, uninterrupted, blissful sleep.

Goodnight!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Well, wouldn't you know...


Instead of waking up as an 80 year old woman, I instead woke up as a 13 year girl. I've got the zits to prove it.

Seriously.

Apparently I squatted on the wrong green tube and was morphed back into teenage-dom. Speaking of which, all of you mother's who are battling temper tantrums, sleepless nights and diaper blow outs? Embrace them.

These are the easiest years of your life.

Trust me on this one. When that sleepless babe grows to a teenager, the stakes rise. Even the "good" stuff is heavy.

I'm nearly ready for Christmas...some gifts to wrap and some baking to do, but then BRING IT ON! My stress level is still through the roof, however. My neck tells me so by becoming so tight I can't help but take notice because it feels as though it is going to consume my brain in a cannabalistic fit of binge eating.

That's all. Goodnight.

Oh, but wait...because I love you, (back to the teenage stuff) may you never be blessed with having to be a part of the team meal the week of Christmas.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Whatcha doin'?


Me? Oh, you know, just sitting here trying to decide how I can convince the universe to slow down just a little bit.

Christmas is in one week. ONE WEEK. 7 days. 420 hours. 25,200 minutes. Okay, I'll stop.

My point is THERE'S NOT ENOUGH TIME TO GET EVERYTHING DONE!!

*Deep breaths*

If only I could take a leave of absence from work for the last two weeks before Christmas. But, alas, I can't. Well, maybe I could, but, you see, I'm saving vacation time for a certain trip to Mexico that is coming in 4 weeks...FOUR WEEKS!!

That means that tomorrow, I'll wake up and I'll have to catch a plane at 7 in the morning. Because that's how time works around here...I go to bed one night as a small child, I wake up as a married woman of five children who is stressing out about the holidays and a vacation that will be here any minute.

Seriously, I swear to you I live in some sort of "Mario-esque" time warp. Maybe if I find a little green tube to squat down on it'll slow this craziness down. 'Course, it could backfire (*snicker* get it? "Squat" and "backfire"?!) and I'd end up in some hyperspeed world.

Wait. That's right. I ALREADY am in hyperspeed world.

Ugh. I've gotta go to bed. But I better finish wrapping presents, because you never know, I could wake up an 80 year woman tomorrow, the way things are going.

Goodnight. I'll see you in the morning...and I may or may not be wearing Depends, using bifocals, and looking for my dentures.



Friday, December 16, 2011

Five Question Friday!! 12/16/11


Can you believe that Christmas is in *gulp* one week and two days (or one day if you start celebrating on Christmas Eve but we won't talk about that because I need my psyche to think that I have as many days as possible otherwise she might just spontaneously combust into a big poof of Christmas glitter).


I have some shopping left to do. More than I want to have to do. And, my baking? Nada. Zilch. Nunya. Not a single thing done.

I WANT MY MOMMY! Or, a nice leave of absence from work so that I can finish everything I need to do. Think they'd approve that? ;)

Anyway...let's get a move on!

Welcome to Five Question Friday!! You've come to the right place if you want a fun, easy post or if you've suddenly discovered your muses have been Christmas baking and are covered in flour and chocolate.

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

Oh, and remember (pay close attention...this is the important one)...HAVE FUN!

Questions for Friday, December 9th: (Special thanks to @bloggerlinds (and @kandiipie too!), @kenedram, Sharayha, @bellismom and little old me for their question suggestions! I would love to link you in a future 5QF, so come on over to my community or watch for my Thursday afternoon shout out for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos me and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

1. What's the best Christmas present you've ever received?

2. Worst/Funniest White Elephant gift ever received?

3. Is your Christmas tree plain and simple (white lights and matching ornaments) or is it wild and crazy (colored lights with lots of ornaments collected over the years)?

4. "How" do you iron your clothes? The old fashioned iron/ironing board way, the shower, back in the dryer, etc.

5. How much baking do you do for Christmas and what are your "must make" items? (I'm looking for recipes here, peeps...)

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1. What's the best Christmas present you've ever received?

Oh my gosh. I've had some pretty fabulous Christmas gifts.

But my favorite? Wow...this is going to take some thought. Hold please...

Well, there's Marlboro Man, whom I love.

However, I've gotta go with my Grampa's Garden lap blanket. It's a minky/flannel covered grain-filled blanket that you heat in the microwave and man alive...that thing has gotten me through many sore neck, back, shoulders and warmed my "frozen to the core" Minnesota body.

I highly recommend one for someone in your life. They are FABULOUS. (And, no, I didn't get paid to say that.)

2. Worst/Funniest White Elephant gift ever received?

Would you believe that I've never participated in a White Elephant gift exchange?

But, I have received some doozies of a present. 'Course, since many of my family members read here, I can't say...'cuz then I'd hurt feelings and that would make me sad.

And I don't like being sad.

It's always funny when you open one of "those" gifts. When I was a teenager, I used to hold up whatever "offending" (spoiled much?) item I'd just received so that it blocked my face and I'd say, "Ohhhhhhh, I love it! Thank you!!" in what I thought was a sincere voice but probably came out sounding more like, "For real? When you saw this on the shelf what, exactly, about it said "Mama"?"

It makes for funny stories with my mom though. (Babushka anyone? Funny, almost exactly one year ago, we did this same question!)

3. Is your Christmas tree plain and simple (white lights and matching ornaments) or is it wild and crazy (colored lights with lots of ornaments collected over the years)?

Someday, I'd love to have a "gorgeous" tree. With perfectly placed lights, wrapped in ribbon, coordinating ornaments covering the entire thing...but for now?

Chaos.

Our tree represents our life. Falling down tinsle, ornament heavy bottom half, ornaments that are very much "kid oriented".

But I love it. It is perfect for our life right now.

4. "How" do you iron your clothes? The old fashioned iron/ironing board way, the shower, back in the dryer, etc.

Okay, so we don't even own an ironing board. We have a half wall that we do our ironing on. Oh, and by "we" I do not, in any way, shape or form include myself in that. Iron, I do not.

I have been know to toss a shirt back in the dryer or, if we're at a hotel, hang a shirt up in the bathroom and turn on the shower as hot as it will go in hopes to "steam" the wrinkles out.

And to think, I know people who iron their sheets. SHEETS! Wait...or was it their underwear?

Either way. Whoa.

Not my kinda thing. To each their own.

5. How much baking do you do for Christmas and what are your "must make" items? (I'm looking for recipes here, peeps...)

I do a decent amount...this year, however? I dunno what I'll get done.

"Oreo balls" are a must (crush a package of oreos in a food processor, mix in a "brick" of softened cream cheese, roll into balls and dip in almond bark. You're welcome.), so I will definitely be making those.

Also, a new favorite treat that I made up are "Toasted Almond Nutella Clusters" (toast sliced almonds until golden brown, melt chocolate bark and add a couple of soup spoon full globs of Nutella, mix in almonds, stir to combine and drop into small "clusters").

And then there are the greatest bars in the world. Let me see if I have the recipe...hold again please...

Nope, not handy. So, I guess I'll try to blog that one soon because they are TO. DIE. FOR.

Oh, and I need to make gingersnaps and nutbread and puppy chow and Heaven in a Bag and Caramel Cashew Chews and...oh crap. I need more time.

Help.

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Well, if you need me I guess you'll be able to find me in one of two places: the mall or my kitchen. ;) Have a fabulous weekend!

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