Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Merry {late} Christmas!!

This year Christmas was way more toned-down than last year's. We had stuff going on for days last year...but I didn't mind because I got sick. Yup! The 3 days before Christmas (the days I was supposed to work on my talk) I was sick (I had a high fever). We still went to my parent's house on Christmas Eve...I was feeling better and I just knew I almost over my sickness. Well, my Grandma (whose in her 80's) came and my fever came back. So I was banished to the basement for our traditional Christmas Eve candlelight dinner. Shawn brought me food and I worked on my talk. After that, my fever subsided and I was allowed upstairs away from everyone. We did a little program complete with acting out the Nativity. Shawn was Joseph, Cambree was Mary (she loved swaying to the music), Brinley was an Angel, Mom was a Shepherd (LOL at the pic!), and Dad was a Wiseman. I narrated.The girls then got to open their pajamas from Grandma Hancock. Brinley got horse ones (perfect) and Cambree got Princess (perfect). They were happy! We set out cookies for Santa and the girls when to bed while everyone (but me) played games.The next morning, we were awoken early (thanks to my sisters...and yes they are older than 16!), had breakfast, and saw what Santa brought us. Cambree was most excited about her Barbie DVDs (as you can see from this picture...that is all that you can see is the DVD!). Brinley was happy to get her Dora Flying/Walking Pegusus Horse. Santa brought me a point-and-shoot (not my NICE one!) camera since Cambree broke mine a few months ago. Then we opened gifts from family and got many more wonderful things.Ang, this pic is for you! That purse is just DARLING!! Thanks so much!The rest of the day, I was able to get a nap or two in (I still wasn't quite myself yet) and we played Ticket to Ride and watched a movie (The Errand of Angels...Mandy, of course, got it for Christmas...it's all about sister missionaries. It was good).
The next day, we took the girls (Mandy came too) to see The Tale of Despereaux. It was a good little movie with a great moral.My mom wanted a 4-generation picture of us girls. We even color-coordinate! It was great to have my Grandma there. She's such a sweetheart and DANG good at games!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

SMOOOTH Sailin'....Or So I Thought!

Yeah, my shopping's done, decorating done, everything is checked off my list so I can relax and enjoy the week. I was expecting a nice, low-key few days before Christmas...until we went in to tithing settlement. I got a calling (tell ya later) AND got asked to speak on Sunday in church!! We'll be in and out on Christmas and thereafter until Saturday night! I have 2 big family shoots on Saturday and a huge family party...I guess I need to start writing my talk, like NOW!! No procrastinating! I was SO CLOSE to saying that we were too busy, but who's not at this time of year? But I HATE giving talks!! The only clincher is that most likely everyone is gone for the holidays, so it won't be like I'm talking at Stake Conference! Our ward is that big! Anyway, I'm just lamenting my not-so-relaxing-anymore week!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas IS COMING!!

So things are slowing down and I've been able to now enjoy the season more. I guess this will happen every year, if I keep doing Photography. (I'm finally all caught up on my Photo Blog, so check out it out to see all my hard work!.)
As far as Christmas Cheer is concerned...I'm pretty much done shopping thanks to Black Friday. Whew! We always do a Christmas Chain countdown (it makes it so the kids are constantly asking how many more days until Christmas?). I do a Christmas Card every year (see above!). And I'm kinda happy I don't have to make a million neighbor gifts this year, first cuz we hardly know anyone and second, the neighborhood did donations for Toys for Tots and the Food Bank instead of neighbor gifts. But my girls were feeling like they wanted to make cookies yesterday so we did. I'm so NOT a BAKER, so there will be NO PICTURES of our funny looking cookies and we WILL NOT be delivering any either! But it was fun and they're yummy. We've watched a few movies together as a family...for Family Home Evening we watched Mr. Kruger's Christmas...it might turn into a tradition...I don't know why...it's not THAT good. Next week I think we'll watch The Nativity. We've also watched Santa Claus, Rudolph, and Frosty the Snowman. Shawn DVRed "The Flight Before Christmas" that we plan to watch tonight. Never heard of it so we'll see how good it is.
So that's about the extent of our festivities! What do you guys do? I've read a few blogs saying they read Christmas stories...that would be great...I just need to get a collection going. We need to come up with some fun traditions!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Finally! A Little R & R!! And Those Long-Awaited Pictures You've All Been Waiting For!!!

So after doing TONS of Photo Shoots for Christmas Cards and having my Christmas Party, it was time for some Rest & Relaxation!! Shawn took his "shopping day" on Friday, so he didn't have work that day, but I sure worked him! Sorry honey! But we got more stuff done on the house! I'm actually going to post some pictures of our house with some of our meager Christmas decorations! (Of course everything looks better with paint & furniture!)

Welcome! The view from the front door...not too different. Only painted 1/2 the arches.

The stairs just off the hallway...didn't paint it, but I LOVE my cool wall hanging!

Yes! The GOLD living/dining room!! You can hate it if you want (and it's really not that bright in person)...Shawn does. But I really like it! I do wish I did the brown darker, but I'm sure it will never get fixed. I still need to hang up some pics and someday we'll get a coffee table and c
hairs to replace the pathetic Christmas tree, but for now, this is it! Yes, the awesome piano was Shawn's parents'. Shawn got it cuz he played the most! It's an antique and just gorgeous! I love it even though I don't play!

The Kitchen...not the same angle. And Brinley was sick when I took this so I didn't want to make her move.
We just got flu shots last week! Can you still get the flu?

The family room...wish the fireplace had a blower! But I like it! Got the couches from Shawn's brother for a steal of a deal! They're pretty much brand-new!

So this bathroom I just didn't know if I would like the black
wainscoting. But after I got my French decor (there's in there, I think it goes great and LOVE it!

The Laundry Room...yes, we even had to paint that! I should've taken a picture of the hole in the wall. Luckily, the previous owners left 3 gallons of this surprise paint (and the coat rack hooks)! I really like the color!

The stairs...they don't look THAT different. We actually didn't paint, but I did make new curtains (that's a first!)! You can't tell, cuz they're still brown, but I used the old ones in the kitchen.

Brinley's room!! SO cute!! My friend and sister-in-law totally did it all! I just LOVE how it turned out! I'll even give you a different view!

Cambree's room...and I just realized you can't even see the beadboard that Shawn and Jeff just put up!! It's super cute though! I want to someday add a bright pink! That would be cute!
(And I got lucky! Over Thanksgiving vacation, Cambree forgot how to crawl out of her crib!! She hasn't done it since! Whew!)

The office. We didn't paint in here either, it didn't look that bad...but it does need touchups!

The kids bathroom. I've had ducky stuff since we first got married. And I took baby pictures of my girls with ducks. So I just couldn't NOT do ducks!

The Master Bedroom. We didn't paint it even though Shawn says it looks pink. It had a fresh coat of paint on it anyway. It's alright with our stuff in it. And of course nothing's on the walls! That's the last room to get done!

The master bathroom. We didn't paint in here either. Although there are several traces of red on the edges of things...I'm guessing that was the color this used to be! And I made that cute hair-bow holder that you can't really see!

Yes! We had to paint this stairwell going to the basement! It was really dinged up! We painted it after we moved in so we could ding it up all we wanted when we moved our stuff down there! I kn
ow! We're so smart!

Here's the bedroom Brinley wanted. But it's in the basement. When she gets a little older we'll move her down there...but for now, it's my craft room! I'll hate to give it up when the time comes! Nope! Didn't have to paint it! It's so cute!

This is another bedroom in the basement. It'll the guest bedroom and Shawn's BYU room! We didn't paint it...it was still good!

Storage room...not much of an improvement. Someday we'll afford shelves...but it is organized chaos!

Rec Room I'm calling it...VERY bare still! And Shawn's scared to try and hookup the surround sound they left...it probably doesn't even work!

Other side of the Rec Room...toy mania!! The closet under the stairs is still being worked on (we need to get on him to come finish!) and that's where all the toys will go!

Here's a picture of the basement bathroom (I'm taking the picture from the shower). We still need to hang up the mirror, but it's really cute I think! I didn't get a before picture.

And last, one of my cool DI finds! I just LOVE these plates! I've had them for awhile but didn't have anywhere to put them!

What brought all these pics on was my friend, Nicole, and her husband and family came over that night. Jeff is REALLY good at doing stuff, brought all his tools, and taught Shawn how to put up beadboard and a chair rail in Cambree's room(so I wanted to show that off)! Yea!! It looks SO cute! Meanwhile, the girls played and Nicole and I made her Christmas cards. Nicole also taught me how to take the extra slats out of the blinds...so that'll keep me busy for a while! We stayed up way too late!
Saturday, I went to a R.S. breakfast where we put together gift bags for Meals on Wheels and meals for the Food Bank. It was really fun to serve. Then, we napped...we have worn ourselves out! Our niece came over to babysit so I could take Shawn to Twilight!! Yea! I got to see it again!! Shawn didn't really like it...too much sexual tension, I guess! He didn't even like the baseball scene!! He critiqued it the whole time (said if Emmett really threw the ball that it would've hit the ground!)! And I realized why I like Emmett so much...he looks like Shawn! Don't you see it? (yeah, I've had a little more time on my hands! It's not a perfect head swap, but you get the idea!)

Then, we went to the Timpangogas Temple. It's been a LONG time since I've been to that temple. I think I've only been there once before. Ahh...nothing like shutting the world out. It was a great weekend!