Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Few Christmas Pics

For Christmas Dave and I went to Charlotte, and it was a nice time. :)  We got many great gifts, one of which was a chair I'd been wanting for the living room.  I'm pretty excited about it!

Here are a few pics to share:

Me with Caylee, Dave's stepsister's daughter
(I had to get my baby fix!)

Dave's stepmom (Teri) showing Caylee some love

Dave's brother (Dan), their dad (John), and Dave

Taylor, Caylee's sister

Look at my giant present!!!
(It was my chair, from Dave's mom and stepdad.)

Dave's mom (Cindy) and stepdad (Todd)

We got Cindy a GPS.  I think she was pretty excited. :)

So what did everyone get for Christmas?? Or is there any gift that you gave to someone else that you're really excited about?

Friday, December 11, 2009


I was really struggling to get into the Christmas spirit for a was just so warm here in North Carolina and I felt out-of-whack.  But now things are slowly starting to sink in, and I'm finding myself listening to Christmas music on a fairly regular basis. A few chillier days and some Christmas events definitely helped increase the Christmas cheer.  :)

My friend Kristin came over to help me decorate last week, and then last weekend Dave went out and purchased lights to put on the front of the house.  We both initially wanted white lights, but they seemed to be out of stock everywhere Dave went.  Then, when we thought about it, we decided that colored lights would probably be better because they'll be a lot more exciting for Krewson in a couple years.  So colored lights it is. :)

We'll need another stocking next year!

Last year my artificial Christmas tree broke as I was trying to put it up.  So I rushed out to Big Lots and found the cheapest tree I could.  Hence my 3-ft itty-bitty Christmas tree.  I think we may go shopping for something nicer at the after-Christmas sales this year. :)

This little village and ice skating rink was one of my favorite decorations when I was little. 
My mom passed it on. :)

I love this snowman.  He's so cute, and he lights up and swirls all kinds of beautiful colors.  Too bad the batteries leaked between last winter and now. :(  It's on our to-do list to try to fix the corrosion.

Two more of my favorite decorations.  The lights on the tree light up, if I'd get a new bulb for inside.  And the snowman lost his nose (see it laying next to him?).  Wow, all my decorations are broken. :( 
It's like the toys from Rudolph.

And finally, Dave's beautiful lights on the front of the house.  We'll probably add more as the years pass, but I figured those were pretty good to start. :)

So what are YOU doing to decorate for Christmas??

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

I made this chicken noodle soup last night and I absolutely love it.  It was cheap (minus the chicken), fairly easy  to prepare, and it made a TON.  Today I need to look up the best way to freeze and store leftover soup. :)

The recipe is from Chicken Noodle Soup

4 cups chopped, cooked chicken meat
1 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped carrots
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup butter
8 ounces egg noodles
12 cups water
9 cubes chicken bouillon
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon dried parsley
In a large stock pot, saute celery and onion in butter or margarine.
Add chicken, carrots, water, bouillon cubes, marjoram, black pepper, bay leaf, and parsley. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Add noodles, and simmer for 10 more minutes.

A few tips and tricks from me:

*Assuming you do not have chicken that is already cooked, chop some raw chicken into chunks and then boil it until it is cooked through.  Then drain, cool (I just rinsed it with cold water), and shred using your fingers.

*I added extra veggies.  I upped the amount of celery, carrots, and onion, and I also added a can of white corn.

*I didn't have nine chicken bouillon cubes, so I substituted low-sodium chicken broth for some of the water.

*I left out the parsley because I didn't have any.

*You don't have to precook the noodles.  You just cook them right in the soup at the end.  I somehow got confused on this and started boiling them separately, then I was like, Wait a minute...

 Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


I'm getting a bit behind on my blogging about our lives these days! So sorry!

So I figured it's about time I share a few tidbits from our Thanksgiving holiday.  This year we did Thanksgiving with my family and we're doing Christmas with Dave's, so the Saturday before Thanksgiving we packed the car and headed north.  We stopped in Cleveland, OH on the way (okay, it was a little out of the way, but not much :) ) to see my friends Ashley and Dave's house, and then Jaclyn and Michelle and their s.o.'s came to visit, also.  It was great to spend more time with them.  Then Dave and I headed on to Indiana, where we spent the rest of the week with my family.  It really was a great trip.  I got to see lots of friends, spend a lot of time with family, and relax.  Very nice. :)

Here are a few pics that my dad took on Thanksgiving day:

Aunt Sandy and her Thanksgiving turkey

Brady and me (he's adorable)

Aaron and his girlfriend, Allison
(I'm thinking she was unaware she was supposed to be looking at the camera)

Cory and me (please excuse the giant belly taking up half the shot)

Playing some Cranium
(which is not a game I enjoy, might I add)

Dave, me, and my grandparents (dad's side)

my girlfriend Alison and me

I also wanted to share the pic below.  I believe it was the day after Thanksgiving, my mom got out some leftovers to cook up, and suddenly all the family dogs became quite well-behaved. :)

Rogan, Chloe, Maggie, Ellie
(and Mom)

Oh, I also have some pictures from when Dave and I had coffee with Audrey and her husband Kevin.  (Audrey is my longest friend...since we were 1!  She was my maid of honor, too. :) )

It was a great trip! Can't wait to see my family and friends again! Love you guys!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Things I've Been Thinking About

There are a few things that I've been mulling over in my head lately that I thought I'd jot down and share.


I have this tendency to think that when I take time to cook, clean, organize, run errands, etc., I'm having "me" time.  I regularly subscribe to FlyLady and Organizer Lady emails, and I'll frequently read that I need to take time "for myself."  And my immediate response has always been, "Well I do that all the time."  Then today an email from FlyLady really struck me.  It pointed out that all those aforementioned activities (cooking, cleaning, organizing, running errands) are not "for me."  They are for the good of my family, our home, sanitation, safety, etc.  They are me giving of my time.  Not me taking time for myself.  I don't know how I got this skewed perspective.  And then it became clear to me why I never get to read any of the books I want to read.  Why I don't feel myself growing closer to God as quickly as I'd like, why I don't feel my knowledge of Him developing as nearly as fast as I'd like.  Because I'm not taking time for myself, to read and grow with Him.  I have so many Christian books I want to study and learn, and I'm going through them at a snail pace.  Perhaps I've found some of the source of my problem?


Yesterday as I was driving to work, a Christmas song I was listening to had a verse that said

Mary shivers in the cold
Trying to keep the Savior warm

And I immediately had visions in my head of this young, brand new mother trying to cuddle the baby Savior as she shakes from the cold around her.  And I thought of how much I dislike being cold and shivering, and how it affects everything about me, including my mood and ability to function.  And it dawned on me...of all people, wouldn't you expect God to cut Mary a break?  After carrying His Child, enduring ridicule for being pregnant prior to marriage, traveling, giving birth in a stable...wouldn't you expect God to at least keep her warm?  Think about how miserable she must have been, sitting amongst animals with a newborn, shivering.  And yet, just like everyone else, she had to endure the hardships of this world.  She had to live the life we all live.  Clearly, God loved her so much and she had pleased Him beyond belief, yet He still didn't keep her from experiencing the struggles of daily life.  She had to endure them, and we all have to endure them today.  It makes me realize that I need to stop my complaining when something annoys me...such as I'm cold, or hot, or tired, or uncomfortable.  I need to get over it.  And not expect God to take it away.  It's life.  And I deserve every bit of it because I'm human and a sinner.  Loved by God and His child, yes, but a sinner nonetheless.  Instead I need to look at all the blessings around me and cherish them, especially the fact that I am saved and one day will be free from the pains of this world. 

If anyone deserved a break from suffering, it was Mary...not me.  My life has been a picnic compared to hers.  Who am I to ever complain?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Free Christmas Music!!

I'm not quite sure how I found this, but Amazon is giving away free Christmas mp3s until Christmas, with a new mp3 being available each day.  I'm pretty excited, since it appears that some of the artists are popular Christian singers/bands that I already listen to.

Check it out! :)

Amazon 25 Days of Free