Merry Christmas! A little…late.

I swear, every time I thought to post a Merry Christmas post, I had to go do something else. Last week was crazy. This weekend was busy. Just when I think I have time to take a breather, I need to clean up Christmas from the house. I hope you and yours had a wonderful, magical, fantastic Christmas and you were blessed with lots of love, good food, and good books. I got the love, the good food and a couple of books (1 cookbook, 1 crochet book, and 1 YA book, pretty good for me!) I also got this:

Come on everybody, squee a little with me! I got a Nook Tablet!! And, even though I really liked my first Nook, this is a vast improvement. It’s so much easier for me to read on this one. AND, considering my goal is to read more classics next year and I have like, almost 100 on here, I think it will help me with that goal. I’ve already started a reread of Pride & Prejudice, which is just as wonderful as I remember.

The kids were spoiled, the hubby kid was spoiled, the new puppy and the old kitty were spoiled, I was spoiled. And we were all together and happy. So it was a wonderful holiday for all.

How was your Christmas? Get any good books? Do tell all, I want to hear!

Advent Tour 2011

I had a completely different intention with my post today. I was going to show you all the ornaments I’ve made this year, to replace all the ones I lost this summer, when they decided to take a nose dive from the attic, but something so huge, so amazing, so completely LIFE CHANGING happened, and I had to change my plans.

We decided to give the kids their Christmas present early.

Mainly because he would be very hard to hide.

Meet Castiel. Blue. We had a family discussion. And we changed his name. Whew.

He’s an Australian Shepherd-Terrier Mix and he is super adorable. And some one is SUPER happy.

We had to give him a little early, since we can’t hide him. So far, I’m pretty sure this is the BEST CHRISTMAS EVER for one little girl.

Happy Holidays everyone, I hope you’re holidays are wonderful.

Other stops on the tour today:

Shannon @ The Savvy Reader

Virtual Advent Tour – A Trip Down Memory Lane

It’s strange to say, but at 32, I am just about the last member of my family left.  I have an aunt and uncle, and of course my kiddos and hubby, but the core family unit I grew up with isn’t around any more.  My parents are gone, as are the grandparents who raised me.  This time of year can be, well, depressing for me.  Yet every year, when the tree goes up and those old, handmade decorations come out of the attic , I feel my family with me in ways I don’t feel them the rest of the year.  For they are here, in my favorite ornaments, the nativity scene that was made by my aunt and put up every year (this will not be pictured as it is not out this year. I do have a very adventurous three year old!), with loving care on top of the piano by my grandmother  and the feelings in the air.  They are still here, which is a part of what makes this such a wonderful time of year for me.

My grandmother gave me an ornament every year.  This would have been when I was 1.  She continued this tradition for many years.  I think I got most of them after she died.  There were a few lost to breakages, of course, and I can’t remember how long she did it.  I still have 1981 though!

Then, there are the ornaments I made over the years.  I think Mama kept all of them.  I didn’t put many up this year, again because of that rambunctious three year old, but I did put this one up.  It’s one of my favorites. I made a TON of these about 12 years ago.  It’s a clear ball with paint in it.  You let the paint drain out into a paper cup and when it dries, it looks like this!

And then, there are the new memories we’re making.  All the Disney ornaments I have from my time working at the Disney Store…

All the ornaments my kids are making…

And all the new ornaments we’re buying because of love….

and the hope that if one falls (see crazy child) it won’t break because it’s cheap and from Walmart.  It may not have value now, but if it’s still around in 10-20, it will then.  It will be a survivor!

So, I hope you have enjoyed this brief tour of memories.  I hope if you are missing someone you find comfort and that the memories you make with those still here are a blessing.  Just remember to pay attention.  Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, have a Wonderful Winter!

All I Want for Christmas…

is a few books.  And, like most readers I know, I didn’t get many at ALL.  In fact, I got two. Less than my hubby, less than my daughter and even less than my son; all of whom are NOT READERS.  *sigh*

I put bunches on my wish list. I can’t understand why they don’t want to get me what I looooove.  They get my hubby movies and games! Lots of movies and games!  *sigh*

However, I did get LOTS of other fantastic presents!!!!! Clothes, coats (which I really needed), a new Lightwedge (Yes!! Finally!!), boots, Julie & Julia (which I have already watched and LOVED), and lots of little doodads in my stocking.  And my kids got me things for the kitchen.  Paula DEEN things.  Like, a new rolling pin!! 

I really need a bread cookbook.

The kids really racked up.  Spoiled rotten, the both of them. And hubby too.

The new books in the house?  Because I am totally jealous of my hubby and may just have to read his books too?

  • House of Mystery Volume 1 by Bill Willingham and others
  • House of Mystery Volume 2 by various authors (These two are mine)
  • World War Z by Max Brooks
  • The Living Dead by various authors
  • Arkham Asylum by … I’m not sure who, it’s a graphic novel I got the hubby, it’s a 15th anniversary of the original.
  • Locke & Key 2 by Joe Hill (which is sure to be absolutely insane. I have to read it) (Obviously, the last four are the hubby’s loot)
  • And lots of science books for the daughter.  Six years old and she is obsessed with rocks, science, space, animals, and the like.  It’s so… surprising. And very, very cool.

I hope very much that you and yours had as wonderful a Christmas as we did. 

Oh yeah, one last thing.  My MONITOR died on Christmas Day.  So, I may be missing from here and from your blogs for a few days.  I had really hoped to use this weekend to catch up on my blog reading and commenting!  I’m using the hubby’s laptop now (which is why there aren’t any pictures).  My new monitor is SUPPOSED to be here Tuesday. Hubby let me order a new one!  Woot!

Virtual Advent Blog Tour

Large Advent 1This is my first year participating in the Virtual Advent Blog Tour.  I’m not sure why I have stayed away until now; I guess I’ll chalk it up to my tendency to be a bit of a Scrooge.  I love Christmas, don’t get me wrong, but the whole “starting Christmas before it’s even Thanksgiving” annoys me.   I’m not so much into the whole getting presents thing. Hey, I love getting presents but there is so much to be enjoyed during the season.  Family.  Love.  Movies.  FOOD.  And music.

Because really, that’s when it all starts right?  Walking around Walmart, buying Halloween candy to the strains of Silent Night, Holy Night, marks the beginning of the season in these parts.   So, to celebrate the season, with one of my favorite parts of it, here are a few carols to get us started right.

One of the rockin-est versions of Carol of the Bells I’ve even heard and definitely my favorite.

And John Berry’s version of O Holy Night never fails to bring on the chills and goosebumps.

From one of my favorite holiday movies! I really prefer the her singing it with Will. That version with Leon Redbone grates my ears!

For my uncle. 🙂

I hope you’ve enjoyed a very brief tour of some of my favorite Christmas Carols. What are some of yours? Happy Holidays!!!

Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

Sweet, eh?
Sweet, eh?

Today was one of those days where I felt very much the Grinch.  Or Scrooge.  No, that’s not true.  I don’t begrudge anyone their holiday cheer, nor do I want to cheat them out of their last farthing.  But I definitely feel a sincere lack of the usual excitement that comes with this magnificent holiday.  One would think I’d be feeling it a little more.  I have a 5-year-old who is beside herself with excitement.  A 15-month-old who is terrified of Santa and screams whenever he sees him yet is still entranced by the displays of Christmas lights, presents, and trees.  Dozens of beautiful Christmas cards with their depictions of Santa, Christ, and general Christmas cheer have flooded into our house and I have sent an equal share back out again.

So what gives?

Well, one, this time of year, more than any other, I miss my grandparents.  (In case you didn’t know, they raised me, so I might as well say, my parents.)  They were never ones for big displays at Christmas, but still, I keenly feel their loss right now.  It’s so hard to believe my Papa has been gone almost 7 years and my Mama just barely 3. 

How to cheer up then?

Well, for starters I am very, very, very much looking forward to having next week OFF work!  Monday will be spent wrapping all the presents and putting them under the tree.  I’ll even help out Santa and wrap his presents too!  And I’m going to watch lots of Veronica Mars, which I recently discovered thanks to Netflix and am now totally addicted to. Which really sucks, since it was cancelled and all.  And I’m going to knit some more presents.  Tuesday will probably be my annual shopping trip with my uncle (another father figure).  Wednesday, I will cook.  And then Thursday and Friday will be devoted to family and presents and foooooood.   And of course I’ll try to fit in a few more good books before the end of the year.  So I’ll get straigtened out.

All I Want For Christmas…

Saw this on a livejournal blog and just had to steal…

For fun, and since it’s the holidays, list (in any order you want) ten things you want from any (fiction) book that you’ve read.

What can go on the list: Characters, character traits, objects that are NOT found in everyday life like brand names, character abilities, a specific world, anything is up for grabs. What can’t: Real world brand name stuff (Brand name dress worn by CHARACTER to prom/dance/wedding/special event = no. Scarlet’s dress that she made out of curtains? Yes. Ordinary Mercedes Benz owned by male character = no. Flying car = yes.).

Real people (Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth? No.) Have fun with it! Don’t forget to list the name of the book/series and a short comment on why that one.

Well, I could only think of eight, so…

Eight fictional things I want for Christmas

  1. That bag Hermione used in HP7 to store all their things.  It could hold all my books!  Although, woe to me if I lost it! 
  2. A Quick Quotes Quill.  From  various HP books.  It makes writing seem remarkably easy!
  3. Pemberley.  From Pride and Prejudice. Because it would come complete with Mr. Darcy.  Nuff said.
  4. Annabeth’s cap.  From Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series.  It makes you invisible.  Would probably come in handy someday and it seems less cumbersome than Harry’s Invisibility cloak.
  5. The book “The Neverending Story” from The Neverending Story.  Coolest book ever!  If you’ve have only seen the movie, it is NOTHING nearly as good as the book.  And I really like that movie.  You must read the book though, if you are any kind of fan of the movie.
  6. A glass book from Glass Books of the Dream Eaters.  Oh come on, aren’t you the least bit curious?
  7. A vis bulla from Rises the Night, etc, by Colleen Gleason.  Cause they sound wicked cool.
  8. The Traveling Pants, from Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares.  Jeans that look good on anybody?  Sounds good to me!

5 down, many to go!

Well, after 19 days on this Weight Watcher’s thing, I have lost a grand total of 5 and half pounds!!  Woot! 

It’s been really easy so far.  I’m still eating what I like, just less of it.  And thank the Lord, it’s coming off of the belly!!  Now if only it would come off the hips, thighs and buttocks! 🙂

Things in our household have been…interesting…this week.  Ellie has a cold.  Wesley got his first shots Monday, so he’s been a little ill-pill.  And poor Ellie; on top of it all she’s going to get a flu shot today.  Poor thing!! 

Is anyone else positively terrified that Christmas is barely a month away?  I just can’t believe it.  Where did the month go?  I started my Christmas shopping last week by buying something for my aunt.  I have no idea what to get for the kids though.  Wesley will only be 3-months-old and Ellie just wants more horses.  She only owns about 300 of the things!!

And of course, the most important thing – making the list of books I want for Christmas!!