Sunday, January 30, 2011

Weekend

I love a clean house.  I hate cleaning, but I loooove a clean house.

There’s just something about freshly vacuumed carpet, dust-free furniture, spotless bathrooms, clean dishes, empty laundry baskets, and fresh sheets that makes me happy.  However, all of these things NEVER happen at the same time in my house.  Never.

Until yesterday.

I spent the better part of the day doing laundry, organizing kitchen cabinets, putting away toys, cleaning out junk drawers, dusting, and scrubbing down the house.  I’m not sure where all the energy came from, but I was thankful to have it because my house has not been this clean or organized since we moved in two and a half years ago!

After I was done with the house, we took Christopher to the park to run around.  It was in the 70s and gorgeous outside. However, apparently every other parent in Mena had decided to do the same thing. The nicer of our two parks was packed with families, so we headed to the smaller park.  There were still quite a few people there, but the playground itself only had 3 or 4 kids running around on it, so we parked there and let Christopher play for a little while.  It’s not quite as toddler-oriented as the main park, though, so there’s not much he can do except go down a slide or two.  We stayed for probably 15 minutes then left.

Next, we went to our local Stage store because I wanted to get Christopher a new pair of tennis shoes. I had a coupon for 25% off, plus they were having a sale where if you bought one athletic shoe you could get the second for 1/2 off, so I was able to get one pair for 25% off $18.00 and the second pair for 50% off $14.00, meaning I got two pair of tennis shoes for $22.00!  I love Stages sales and the fact that you can use coupons even on sale items. I got one pair of size 6 shoes for now and then I bought a size 7 for him to grow into.

Next was a half-price drink from Cruizzers for me and Stevo, then we headed out to my parents house to take them a few things I had found when I was cleaning.  Christopher was excited to see his grandparents (as always) and didn’t want to leave to come back home with us (as usual.)  Sigh.  While we were there he got his PawPaw to swing him HIIIIIGH in his swing and got his Granny to take him for a ride on the 4-wheeler. I think he probably had more fun at my parents house than he did at the park. :)

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This morning Christopher slept in late (thank you baby! Momma was TIRED after yesterday!) and we skipped church and stayed home and snuggled.  Well, snuggled for as long as it took Christopher to eat his breakfast on the couch, then he took off to play with toys and make a mess of the clean house.  ha!

After the beautiful weather yesterday I’m ready for spring and summer.  One of the gifts Stephen and I got for Christmas is Season Passes to Silver Dollar City.  I am SO excited about them and I’m already planning several trips to Branson this year.  We (meaning Stephen, his mom, and his brother) have a timeshare type thing with a company of Condos where we can stay in the condos for free during the odd years. Since it’s 2011, we have pretty much unlimited use of the condos ALL YEAR LONG and one of the Condos is located in Branson.  For Christmas, Stephen and I also received almost $100 in gift certificates to restaurants in Branson, which basically means Stephen and I can go to Branson and have free lodging, free access to Silver Dollar City, and several free meals!  All it will cost us is gas and whatever we buy while we’re there. I’m so excited about it! I have been thinking about trips to Branson all morning.  I can’t wait for summertime and I’m hoping the whole family can go – my parents also have Season Passes and we can take Deanna, Tyler, and Britney with our “guest passes” a few times!  Again, I’m really excited.  Unfortunately, it’s just the end of January – but I’m hoping time flies and summer is here before we know it!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

a non-update update.

So... no [non-picture] post for a week a half, but there's really not much to say!

The highlights of the last few weeks include starting the Spring semester (my LAST Spring semester of undergraduate work!) and playing Charades with my family.  Aaaand that's about it!  Ha!

So far this morning I've been working on the house.  Not sure why, but I woke up with a burst of energy and I've been working on Christopher's room and laundry.  I put away his 12-month PJs this morning... which made me really sad for some reason.  I remember when I first put those sweet 2-piece PJs on him and thinking that he looked like such a big boy and now they're too small for him.  I know that his normal 12-month pants are too small/short, but I have a few outfits that I'm just not ready to let go of yet... so they're staying put for the next month or so!

Today is a gorgeous day, and later I plan on dragging Stephen out of the house and taking Christopher to the park to play or possibly going up on the mountain and doing something fun up there.  The last few days have been very non-winter like, and it's making me wish for spring and summer, green grass, hummingbirds, flowers, etc etc.  :)  I love winter and snow but I love warm weather more... which, Stephen pointed out earlier this week, means that we probably shouldn't move to Alaska like I've been begging him to.  He looked up the average temps there in order to convince me why I would not like living there permanently, and that pretty much convinced me to stay below the Mason-Dixon line.

And now I'm going to get back to working on the house.  :)  Happy Saturday!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Project 365: January 19-26

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1.19.2011 – Christopher enjoying some cinnamon graham crackers.

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1.20.2011 – Sweet Jasper asleep in my lap.

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1.21.2011 – Hanging out in his (new) PJs.

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1.22.2011 - This was the time it was when I realized I hadn’t taken a picture this day… (Photo taken with my iPhone)

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1.23.2011 – I gave Christopher two tortilla chips and some water, and he sat down in his little chair at the coffee table in the living room and made himself a “plate”  with the chips, a clothes pin, and a mini tape measurer.

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1.24.2011 – Why play with toys when you have pots and pans?

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1.25.2011 – Every night before I go to bed, I go into Christopher’s bedroom, check on him, and give him a goodnight kiss.

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1.26.2011 – Christopher found a new playing spot… Jasper’s cage.  Lovely.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Recap of 2010

I started this at the beginning of January, but I just sat down and took the time to finish it. It took me longer than I thought it would, but I’m glad I finished it. I enjoyed going back through the year and seeing all the fun things we did in 2010.

January:
Stephen, Christopher, and I flew to Salt Lake City, Utah, to visit Stephen’s biological father and grandparents. We also got to visit Park City, Utah. I loved the mountains!
We participated in the baby dedication at First Baptist Church.

Feburary:
Christopher tried his first solid food. (green beans!)
Christopher turned six months old. (sniff sniff)
After being home with Christopher for the first six months of his life, I returned to work. (SNIFF SNIFF SNIFF!)

March:
I didn’t blog much, and I think we mainly worked. Nothing extremely special happened in March.

April:
Christopher started crawling and turned 8 months old! He started looking less like a baby this month.
Stephen and I made our first big purchase together as a married couple – a 2008 Pontiac G6.

May:
We attended Aunt B’s graduation ceremony.
My favorite brother turned 21.
Strawberries were in season. Exhibit A and Exhibit B.

June:
Sweet, sweet summer arrived.
I turned into my mother found a new love for working in the yard!
Christopher made the front page news.
Christopher started WALKING!
I quit my job at Walmart and prepared to go back to college!

July:
I took two summer college classes at HSU and put a lot of miles on our car!
Operation Holly Bush Removal took place and my front porch was transformed!

August:
I finished up my summer classes at HSU and received an “A” in both classes!
Nana got a pool!
I threw Stephen a surprise birthday party.
Christopher turned ONE YEAR OLD and we had his Birthday Party!
I started the Fall Semester of college at HSU.

September:
College football started and Christopher and I cheered for the Hogs!
I had major test anxiety over my first Accounting exam, then aced it.
Christopher had his first haircut.
Stephen and I went to Branson, Missouri for our 2-year anniversary.

October:
I turned twenty-five years young.
Christopher continued to grow and be way too stinking cute.
Christopher was a monkey for Halloween.
School continued on at full-speed. (Read: not much happened, including blogging.)

November:
I started the Couch to 5K program.
Thanksgiving Break finally arrived.
I took sweet fall photographs.

December:
We went to the local Christmas Parade and fireworks show/Park Lights ceremony.
We visited the Christmas Train & Santa.
The fall 2010 semester ended. (Four A’s and a B in Accounting!)
We celebrated Christmas with our families.

2010 was a GREAT year for us! The highlights were Christopher turning one and me returning to college. I can’t wait to see what 2011 brings us!

ankles, classes, and jobs (oh my?)

Friday morning, I woke up to Stephen hollering (in a panicked, I’m-in-alot-of-pain way) “Baby! Baby! Wake up!” When I finally realized what was going on, I looked down at the foot of our bed and saw my husband laying facedown on the carpet, clutching his chest. (Maybe he wasn’t clutching his chest, but that’s what I thought he was doing.) I immediately thought that he’d had a heart attack (not sure why that’s the first thing I thought of) and started asking what was wrong, what had happened.  He told me to check his ankle, so I was relieved to know that he wasn’t possibly dying. Ha!

I checked his ankle, expecting to see bones poking out of bloody skin, but saw nothing like that. We eventually got his shoes and socks off and couldn’t really see anything out of the ordinary, so I helped him get to the couch and then went outside to turn off his car, which he had started to warm up before he left for work.  He had started his car, then was taking some trash from the front porch to the side yard trash can for me, when he slipped on some black ice on our driveway and twisted his ankle pretty badly. I got him some pain medicine and called in to work for him and we decided to wait a few hours to see how it looked/felt before going to the hospital.

We ended up going to the ER to get it checked out and three x-rays later (can’t wait to get that bill) we discovered that he just had a sprain.

SO… we he spent the next several days laying on the couch with me taking care of the kiddo, the puppy, and the house. Fun times.

***

Yesterday, Stephen and I headed to Arkadelphia to get him registered for classes. Since I’m going on Tuesday/Thursday this semester, with classes starting at 9:30, we were trying to get the same schedule for him – but since it was the day before classes started, we had trouble finding classes that weren’t already full.  We had to get permission from three different teachers so that he could get into classes that were already capped out. Thankfully, we were able to get him into 12 hours – nine on campus and three online. He’ll have to wait on me on Thursday afternoons while I’m in one class, but I think it will be a good time for him to play games on his iPhone work on homework. I’m SO SO excited about Stephen going back to school – in a few years we will both be done with our undergraduate degrees and hopefully have good-paying teaching jobs and possibly working towards our graduate degrees. I don’t want to wish time away (I’m trying to ignore the fact that my baby boy turned 17 months old yesterday and will be a year and a half old next month) but I am so ready for the next “phase” of our life – moving from Mena, buying a newer house, possibly maybe considering thinking about making Christopher a big brother.  :)

***

Speaking of jobs, I am also SO HAPPY to announce that my husband turned in his two weeks notice at Walmart today. He’s been there for entirely too long seven and a half LONG years and he deserves a better job, which is exactly what he got. He is the new SPORTS EDITOR for the Mena Star, our local newspaper. He and I are both really excited about this opportunity. His hours will be more flexible than at WM and he’ll be able to do it and still go to school, which is perfect. I just know he is going to LOVE the job and everything that it entails. He’s excited about everything that he’s going to be able to do and I don’t think there is a better man out there for the position!

***

Today is my last day of Christmas Break. I need to be picking up the house, catching up on laundry, and ordering textbooks, but instead I’m enjoying the day at home, covering Christopher with a thousand kisses, laying around in jammies and watching TV. I’ll clean when Christopher naps and get ready for school after he goes to bed tonight. It’s a bittersweet day because I am excited for Stephen and I to start back to school (for the sole purpose of being excited about being one semester closer to graduating) but I am going to miss my lazy days at home with my favorite little boy.

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Project 365: January 10-18

I’ll admit that I’ve ALREADY screwed up this project because I didn’t take a picture on Friday. Actually, I did – but it was of Stephen’s swollen foot/ankle and let’s just say he doesn’t have the prettiest feet, so I’m going to spare y’all and not post it. :)

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1.10.2011 – Christopher’s first time to play in the snow

01 10 11_1110 1.11.2011 – Bella and Jasper

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1.12.2011 –This one was taken while we were at our favorite Mexican restaurant, Papas. His shirt says, “Have an ICE Day!” which I thought was appropriate because everything was still snowy and icey.

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1.13.2011 – Christopher helped Momma make home-made biscuits. (His great-grandmother’s recipe.)

1.14.2011 – the day Stevo sprained his ankle (while taking out the trash for me!)

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1.15.2011 – Christopher enjoyed his first taste of Cheetos!

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1.16.2011 – My super big boy. My mom bought this outfit for him for his birthday and we thought it was SO big and that it wouldn’t fit until after cold weather season!

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1.17.2011 – So sweet. (Sorry this is so similar to the picture I took a few days ago, but it’s the only one I took on the 17th.)

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1.18.2011 – love.this.stuff.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Christmas Card 2010

I know this is WAAAAAY late. I didn’t do this before Christmas, because I had such a fiasco with my Christmas Cards and I didn’t want to post my card on here until everybody got theirs, then I just never did it. I remembered today and thought I would go ahead and post it anyway, just because it’s too cute, and of course for my own records in case something ever happened to my copies.

This was the front of the cards:scan0001

This was the inside!scan0002 

The colors are a little off here, but I absolutely loved the cards and will definitely be using Shutterfly in the future. :) I got lots of comments on how cute they were and I was super happy with them. In the future, I am also going to try to order my cards early so that people aren’t getting them on Christmas Eve. Ha!

list-style

*Stephen and I start classes at Henderson ONE WEEK from today. I have mixed feelings about it. I’m super excited that Stephen is going back to school, and I’m super excited about starting my last year of classes (next Spring I’ll be doing my teaching internship!) but at the same time I know that I’m going to be SO busy this semester and I dread all the time that I’m going to be away from my little man.

*Speaking of the little man, I’m about 90% sure that I am going to try to enroll him in Daycare two days a week.  My mom has always kept him, but I know that this semester is going to be very time-consuming and I feel like it would be best for him to be in Daycare two days a week and with my mom three days a week. I’ve always said that at 18 months I would be okay with putting him in public Daycare, and believe it or not, he’ll be 18 months in February. He would be in Daycare on Monday and Friday, which means I will be right here in town in case something happens and I’m needed right away; he would be staying with my mom on Tuesday-Thursday, which are the days I’m in class.  I’m much more comfortable with her having him on the days that I’m out of town. I think (and hope and pray) that he will like it and it will be a smooth adjustment for him. The social interaction will be good for him. :)

*Jasper has been having much less accidents inside, thank goodness.  He has been staying in a kennel all night long and NOT making any messes in it overnight, and he goes out first thing in the morning. He spends several hours a day in the backyard with Bella, which is part of the reason we’ve had less accidents inside. I thought I was going to lose my sanity there for a few days, but things are MUCH better now. (Knock on wood.)

*I haven’t watched a single episode of Grey’s Anatomy today. I think that today is the first day in a week.  Even Stephen has gotten sucked into it. I took a nap a few days ago and dreamed that I was a surgical resident at Seattle Grace Hospital and that Dr. Bailey called me telling me that I was needed right away for a big emergency. Think I’ve watched a too much Grey’s lately?  Funny thing is that Stephen had a dream last night that he got bitten in half by a shark and taken to Seattle Grace and McDreamy was called in to look at his wounds and told Stephen that they would be able to fix him up with minimal scarring.  I could NOT stop laughing today when he told me that.

*Since I haven’t watched Grey’s today, I have picked up my whole house, done two loads of laundry (plus hung up laundry that’s been clean for like, a week) cleaned my bathroom, vacuumed, cleaned the kitchen, and am about to start working on organizing Christopher’s books and toys. No TV = productive Stephanie.

*It seems like I always think of things to blog about (like while I’m cleaning) then  can’t remember any of it when I actually sit down at the computer. Oh, well. Happy Thursday!

Snow Day

This past Sunday afternoon it snowed for several hours and resulted in a few inches of beautiful white snow!  For those who don’t know this about me, I LOVE, love lovey love love snow. :) Since it was still snowing heavily Sunday afternoon, I didn’t take Christopher out in it. We waited for Stephen to get home Monday afternoon and took him out in it for a few minutes. He loved it!  He liked to put his hands in it, but then would kind of squeal because he didn’t necessarily love the cold, wet feeling it left. He had fun just walking around it and he did NOT want to come back inside after we had finished playing in it. I know that he will LOVE snow days when he is older and I am SO glad that I will be a teacher and be able to enjoy those days with him, building snowmen and having snowball fights. :)

This is a video I took when we first took him out. It’s mainly just him walking around in it. And tripping and falling facedown in it! ha!

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Monday, January 10, 2011

Project 365

I’m going to attempt to participate in Project 365! I didn’t hear about it till a few days after New Years, and I originally thought I wouldn’t do it, but I’m going to attempt it! I get so busy during the days (or sometimes, so lazy,) that at first I thought there was no way I’d ever follow through with it. And I probably won’t… but I’m at least going to attempt!

I think that this is a great idea. Christopher is growing up so fast, and while I do take pictures of him pretty often, I don’t take them every day. Aaaand, while he is my favorite subject, I am going to try to take pictures of other things as well. I will probably… no, let me rephrase – I KNOW there is no way I am going to blog a new picture every single day, so I’m going to try to do what other bloggers are doing and blog once a week, probably on the weekends. Or so. Depending on how crazy my semester gets, it may be every two weeks. Or once a month.

We’ll see. Ha!

I’m also excited about this because it will get me to using my new (except I’ve had it since August so it’s not THAT new) camera, which is a Nikon D3000. So far I’ve loved taking pictures with it, but I want to work my way out of Automatic and be full-on manual by the end of the year!  Of course, I’m sure I won’t always be shooting with the Nikon, there will probably be just as many (if not more) photos taken with my iPhone. :)

Since today is January 10, I will try to do this until January 10 of next year. :) Or so. Maybe. We’ll see.

I’m starting today and will post my first few days either later in the week or this weekend. :) I’m excited! Wish me luck!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

midnight ramblings

I love the fact that Christmas Break during college is twice as long as public school. Those first two weeks fly by so fast, with Christmas and New Years excitement. It’s be so nice to continue to relax and enjoy my precious time with Christopher.

I’ve pretty much been a bum all week long! Stephen had Thursday, Friday, and Saturday off.  When he got home from work on Wednesday evening, I had a honey-do list waiting for him that had no less than 8 jobs for him to work on over the next 72 hours.

Wanna take a stab at how many of those he completed?  Or started?

ZERO.

Normally, I would be all upset and huffy puffy about it – but I’m in such an “I-don’t-care” kind of attitude, I really don’t mind at all!

I was supposed to paint my laundry room at some point over those three days, and that didn’t happen, either!

Stephen and I watched movies, played Mario Brothers Wii, and spent time with Christopher. And we enjoyed every single second of it!

I do know that at some point over the next week I’m going to have to put down the TV remote, clean my house, put up my Christmas decorations, (they’re packed up, but not put away. They’re just sitting in random boxes in my kitchen.) paint the laundry room, and help Stephen with his honey-do list.

…but first, I must finish Season 6 of Grey’s Anatomy.

I just started watching the show at the beginning of the current season (Season 7) and loved it, so I found Seasons 5 & 6 on instant streaming through Netflix and I want to finish Season 6 before going back to college.

Today, I realized something for the first time in my life.  I could never work in medicine.  It’s something I always wanted to do as a little girl. I wanted to be a doctor, then as I got older I decided I just wanted to do nursing… and long story short, nursing school didn’t work out for me in college then the LPN program I was supposed to participate in didn’t work out because of my L&D with Christopher, and then last summer I decided to teach.

Anyway, I could never work in medicine, because I just get too attached. I don’t think I’m emotionally capable of working with sick people.  And I’m really glad to know that, because I think I would have always wondered if I made the right decision, by not going into nursing/medicine. I know that teaching is what I’m supposed to be doing.

*******

The new puppy, Jasper, is quite the little pooper.  And I mean that literally.

He poops ALL.THE.TIME.  I never knew such a little dog could crap so much.

I’m so sick of cleaning up puppy poop! I remember now why I did not want any more dogs for a LONG LONG time!

He also barks non-stop if he’s left alone. The first night we had him, I was up until 1:15 on the couch, holding him, because he barked for almost an hour straight in a kennel in our bathroom. (We have to put him in our bathroom because anywhere else in the house would wake up Christopher.)

When Stephen woke up and realized I wasn’t in bed, he decided to put Bella, (our female Boxer) in the bathroom with him, so that maybe he wouldn’t bark so much. When I woke up the next morning they were all cuddled up together on Bella’s pillow and I thought, Aw… how sweet!  What a great idea we had!

That worked for about 2 nights.

Then, after me bragging about him being so good, and SO smart he stopped going on the puppy pad, and instead leaves FIVE DIFFERENT POOP PIILES in my bathroom floor.

Stephen cleaned it up the first two mornings it happened (because he was off work those days and is a freaking awesome husband like that) then this morning, when I had to clean it up, I decided I would NOT be doing that again, and that I was SICK of my bathroom smelling like puppy shiz-it, and that he would be sleeping OUTSIDE from now on.

Except it’s freezing (literally) outside and there’s snow on the ground and I can’t do that to a 7-week-old puppy.

So tonight, I decided to put him in the KENNEL in the BATHROOM, but to go ahead and put Bella in the bathroom as well, so that he wouldn’t be alone, but he’d be in a confined area and cleaning up the POO wouldn’t be as hard.

We did that tonight, and Stephen laid down in bed while I came back into the living room to read blogs. Jasper started barking and yelping non-stop, and did it for probably 5 or 6 minutes, until I heard a deep bark come from Bella, and then blissful, wonderful silence.

Even though Jasper was in his kennel and Bella couldn’t actually get to him, she let him know that there was no reason for him to get all separation-anxiety crazy over it and to SHUT UP AND QUIT BARKING. I sat at the computer, thinking about how funny it was that he had actually stopped (he even yelped a bit right afterwards, as if she’d actually hurt him) and what a great dog she is for making him stop. (Does anybody else watch The Dog Whisperer? Bella is a well-balanced dog!) Stephen came out of the bedroom a few minutes later laughing and he couldn’t believe it, either. We’re both glad to know that the bathroom floor won’t be covered with poop every morning when we wake up!

And yes… If you’re a Twilight fan, we did name our dogs after the characters in the book. If/When we ever have more Boxers, we plan on naming them Emmitt and Alice. :)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

all caught up!

I know I haven’t been the best at updating – but when I go back and read this in a few years (or a few months, whatev!) I just need to remember how much I have enjoyed this break!

Christopher is at such a great age right now. We play all day long, usually in our jammies, while Stephen is at work. I know – lazy, right?  I don’t mind.  :)  I know that this is only a 4-week break that I’m getting, and I will be crazy busy with school next semester, (I’m enrolled in 19 hours for the Spring semester) so the way I see it is that I deserve  little down-time before a time-consuming semester starts.

Anyway – I’m going to just put all of the last few weeks activities into one big blog and just get it out there and over with so that I can move on!

After I wrote this post out and added pictures to it, I realized that it could win an award for Longest Blog Ever. My apologies, but I’m not changing it now! Ha!

We spent Christmas Eve afternoon at my parent’s house, with my family – Mom, Dad, Tyler, & Britney.

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I used to be able to spike Christopher’s hair – but now he messes it up and it ends up looking like this. I promise, this isn’t how I originally fixed it. :)
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My dad reading about the birth of Christ.
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Christopher and one of his favorite ladies – Aunt B.
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Unfortunately for me, this vacuum isn’t real. He loves it!
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Hiding out in Pawpaw’s new toolbox.
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Kiddo loved his new shoes. (Can you see the smile on his face?)
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I told him to go thank Pawpaw for his new shoes, and to give him a hug.
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Granny, too!
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Then, (just for the heck of it?) he gave Aunt B a hug, too!
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LOVE my new Hogs hoodie from Ty and B! It’s super warm and comfy!
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Aunt B and Uncle Tyler got Christopher this awesome 4-wheeler! He loves it!
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Granny and Pawpaw with C-monster. (And another pair of shoes he got from them!)

We spent Christmas Eve evening with Stephen’s mom. We were supposed to do gifts with her and his brother/sister-in-law that night, but they were late getting in from DFW, so we ended up doing them the next day. We had dinner with Deanna and played card games after Christopher went to bed.

On Christmas morning, we woke up and realized that Santa Claus had come to visit Christopher! Apparently, he was a good boy this year!

We got a video of this, but I haven’t uploaded it to YouTube yet, so here are a few pictures of Christmas morning (at our house.)
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Christmas morning, we went to my parents house. Santa still stops by my parents house to leave our stockings full of gifts. :) We got some neat stuff in our stockings there and had a yummy breakfast of homemade biscuits and gravy, sausage, bacon, and Paul Deen cinnamon rolls. (Which I got up at 6:30 in the morning to make but was SO totally worth it, cause they are so ridiculously delicious.)
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Pawpaw and Uncle Tyler had put together this gift for Christopher.

After breakfast, we went to Nana’s house to do Christmas with her, Jim, and Cristin.12 24 10_0310 12 24 10_0312 12 24 10_0313  12 24 10_0324 12 24 10_0327 12 24 10_0329 12 24 10_0331 12 24 10_0353
This is Stephen opening his “big gift” – a new Blu-Ray player.12 24 10_0354
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That would be yours truly, acting crazy. :)

We had a great Christmas! Mine and Stephen’s “big gifts” were Silver Dollar City season passes and gift cards to a couple of our favorite restaurants in Branson (Cantina Laredo and Shorty Smalls – YUM!) and we lots of other neat smaller gifts – too much to remember or mention!

We spent New Years Eve at the Rehearsal/Rehearsal Dinner for my brother’s wedding. Christopher stayed with his Nana that night, so Stephen and I rung in NYE by… (wait for it…) playing his new Mario Brothers game on the Wii.

We said Happy New Year to each other around 12:05 and were in bed by 12:15 (I’m just glad we made it til midnight!) then slept in till almost 10 am the next morning!

Saturday, January 1st, Tyler and Britney FINALLY became Mr. and Mrs. Speer!  I could not be happier about officially being able to call Britney my sister-in-law and I am so happy for them! Stephen was a groomsman and I was a bridesmaid.  It was a gorgeous wedding and reception and a great day all-around. :) I don’t have any pictures of it yet, so they’ll have to wait for another post.

This day after the wedding, Stephen and I got a phone call that we could finally go pick up Christopher’s last Christmas present…

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We have a co-worker who breeds boxers. We had planned to breed Bella, our boxer, with their male boxer, Apollo, but the timing didn’t work out and I decided that I didn’t really want to have to deal with a litter of puppies while I was in college anyway.  But she told Stephen and few weeks before Christmas that she had a new litter and gave us a GREAT deal on a purebred, registered puppy that we just couldn’t refuse!  We went to look at them immediately. We knew we wanted a male, and  she had the prettiest little brindle-colored male – but another puppy with a gorgeous face walked right over to Christopher and started licking on him – and I knew immediately that he had picked us!  We brought him home Sunday afternoon and named him Jasper! He is going to be a GREAT dog, I just know! Christopher loves him already and so do we. :)

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I think that pretty much covers all the big highlights over the last couple of weeks!