Thursday, January 13, 2011

A day of paradox

Yesterday was the 4th anniversary of my brother's untimely death. For the last three years I had a box in my bedroom that sat next to my that box was the notepad that I was scribbling information and numbers on as I received the news. I never used that notepad again, but over the last three years, I would get it out and read over my scribbles and remember my emotions.

Most of all, I was concerned for my parents. I had to make the call to them, then I had to get to Houston to take care of my brother's things...then I had to get back home and pack and get to Illinois as quick as I could, to be with my parents. Looking back now, I don't know how I did it, how it all worked out...but it did and time has past and life goes on.

Yesterday, I heard the heartbeat of my grand baby. Ashley had a doctor's appointment and went alone. How surprised I was when I got a text message and it was the audio of the heartbeat. Her doctor recorded it on Ashley's iPhone and she sent it to us.

Even though the day reminded me of a time of loss, how quickly my emotions changed when presented with the sign of life.

The bible is full of paradox, our lives are full of paradox.....I find it exciting to know that things change, for the good and for the bad, we never know what our day will hold. We do know this....God is unchanging and He holds our days.

To celebrate, I took Ashley out for dinner! I snapped this picture at the table, I can't help but see her as my "little" girl here.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New Year Wedding

Ashley made a beautiful bridesmaid for Jose's sister's wedding this past Saturday.
The wedding took place at the same plantation that Ashley and Jose had their reception at. Since their wedding, the plantation owners have built an outdoor cathedral. It is just beautiful. The weather was perfect...just a little cool.

Ashley and Jose during the recessional.
The cute couple - Monica and Jonathan Guzeman. They are enjoying the warm weather in Florida this week for their honeymoon.
I enjoyed the wedding, so glad that I could just sit and enjoy.......I'm still a little on edge from having to plan two weddings in a row. My final "to do" is still not finished from both weddings! That is ordering pictures to be framed and hung. I have had all the 4x6 pics from Ashley's wedding printed, but not put in albums. Still need to decide which ones to have printed larger and framed.
I have not had any of Brittany's printed yet. So that is my first project for this year. Brittany did give me great hardbound books of each wedding and small softbound books for Christmas. They are beautiful. Thanks Brittany!!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Dogs love Christmas too!

There is Cooper! He is such a sweet boy - he absolutely loved helping us host our family and our grand-doggers. He was so sad when everyone left.
Penelope loved all of her gifts, but she is rather territorial. At her house, she literally sat by her stocking, every waking moment, guarding it from the other dogs....and none of the other dogs wanted her stuff. Ashley had to finally take it down and put it away, to give her peace of mind. Here she is on Christmas morning at our house, as her gifts were opened, she would lay on them to guard them. The blanket was from me, the toy from Ashley and the outfit from Brittany and Justin.

Bella is not as territorial, but she did like her new blanket.

Cooper was checking out one of his gifts and Penelope was making sure her name wasn't on the tag! Benny loved gifts too and we have cute video footage of him opening his gifts. He was so cute, he would tear off all the paper.

No more gifts opened them all!

After opening gifts, we started making dinner. It was a casual dinner, as far as our place settings, but it was a really good dinner. I mean if you are going to be eating in your pajamas at 5:00 p.m., I wasn't too worried about making the table all fancy!
We had spiral ham, a boneless shrimp stuffed turkey, scalloped sweet potatoes, garlic mashed potatoes, corn souffle, baked beans, broccoli salad, stuffed artichoke, deviled eggs and rolls. It was really good and we had leftovers for a couple of leftovers!

These pictures were taken the day after Christmas, when we finally decided to get dressed. We were on our way to church.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Christmas Morning

Christmas found me back in the kitchen. I made us a quick breakfast and we waited for the kids to come over. The great thing about grown children, you don't have to get up super early on Christmas morning. Brittany and Justin stayed with Ashley and Jose, next door. When they got up, they sat around Ashley's tree and opened their stockings to one another (the spouses). While I was next door at our house preparing a breakfast.
I made canned cinnamon rolls in the shape of a tree and tinted the frosting green....I think I would have rather kept it white and put green sprinkles on it.

I made a casserole. This one was different than the sausage/egg casserole I usually make. This was called Breakfast Bacon Pizza. It was a layer of Crescent rolls, some hash browns, bacon, eggs and cheese. Everyone liked it...but I like the old one better.
On Christmas, we keep our pajamas on the whole day. No one has ever complained about it and even Mom and Dad stay in their pajamas. After Breakfast and before we started opening gifts, we took pictures by the tree.
Brittany, Justin and Benny

Ashley, Jose, Bella and Penelope

Mom and cute!

Me and Terry......where is Cooper??
I will post the picture tomorrow, along with other pictures of the dogs opening their presents. Those dogs sure did enjoy all their gifts! I wonder if they will get as much attention next year??

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! Last night we celebrated very low key! First time we have been home in years. We stayed in with Mom and Dad....watched some T.V., played a little Wii and waited for midnight! Dad went to bed around 11:00 and told mom to wake him up at 11:45. She did and surprisingly, he got up. Terry poured some sparkling cider and small glasses and we listened as Dick Clark counted down the New Year on an hour delay. We toasted, kissed, stepped outside to watch the fireworks and went to bed. I also spent a little time talking with the girls on the phone and texting with a friend.

Poor little Cooper had a rough afraid of the fireworks, and they started shooting them off around seven. He was under my folks bed and then made his way in their bed, under the covers.....and when I woke this morning, he was under our covers. Today, he has finally calmed down. He is following mom all over the house as she is trying to pack and pull everything together for their early departure in the morning. He sure is going to miss their company.

I'm making some pork chops, white beans and rice a little later on. I tried to buy some black eyed peas for Dad, he likes them, but Wal-mart was all out yesterday. So, white beans will have to do! Oh, I will make cornbread too!