Thursday, December 31, 2009

Yours for the taking

Remember my friend Jamie who made my awesome blog layout? Remember my old, plain button that I made? Well check out what Jamie did!

I consider the Jenna above the tanner, thinner version of myself. Oh and with better hair. But Chris and B look pretty right on!

Thank you Jamie for the awesome button!

Scroll down on my left toolbar and there is a code that you can grab to put the button on your blog!

And if you want your very own button, check out Jamie's design site here!

One last clue...

I'm giving y'all one last clue before Brayden's birthday theme is revealed!

This time, it's not a picture, but rather the slogan for his birthday!


Oh what fun, Brayden is ONE!

OK, guesses???


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Giveaway Time!

Hey all! I have a great giveaway and review coming up for you on Jenna's Reviews and Giveaways! I think you are going to love it! I'll give you a comes from Rachel Ray Cookware! Any guesses? Stay tuned for the giveaway!

And be sure to give me YOUR opinion on binkies and blankies here! Thanks for all your advice!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Binkies and Blankies. I need your help!

MOMS - I need your help!

Somebody is very attached to his Mr. Binks. So much so that if you ask him where Mr. Binks is, that he hunts it down and shoves it in his mouth. This is, of course, assuming that it isn't already in his mouth.

Exhibit A:

I was reading an article that says its best to start binkie weaning at 12 months. Now, we actually aren't going to do that because I've also been told that using a bink can help with his silent aspiration, and we don't go back for B's swallow study until April.

Exhibit B:

But, assuming he passes, I am gathering up tips and tricks for how to get him to hand over the bink. So bring on your thoughts, examples and stories!
And as for blankies, we decided to give B a blanket tonight because his room just stays colder. I have the heat on 75 up there and it's still chilly in his room. He wasn't sure about the blankie at first...any thoughts? Is it just something that he will get used to?

Top 10 Fave Buys in 09'

I realize that this is random, but I thought I'd share a list of my top 10 favorite finds or buys in 09'...

No, B is not the buy...but his binkie is! I really heart Gumdrops pacifiers. They rock. And everyone asks where I get them. The only negative is that you can't just go buy them at the store, you've got to order them from Hawaii Medical. But they ship them to you quickly and you can buy them in bulk.

When Chris and I got married we received a set of knives as a gift - but after about a month it was clear that those knives just wouldn't stay sharp. I asked Chris for a set of Rachel Ray Furi knives for Christmas and he got them for me. I LOVE THESE KNIVES! The handle is great and your hand never slips off of it, but the blades really do stay sharp!

Chris has several North Face jackets and he's always saying how warm they are. I didn't really buy it that they would be any warmer than any other jacket - until I put it on one day and went outside. Oh. My. Word. So, he had to get me my own so I'd quit stealing his.

You may remember my jeans post? Or the follow up on the jeans I bought? Well, Paige Premium Denim is my new BFF for jeans. Anyone of any size an wear them. And if you've, say, just had a baby and are a little insecure with how your waist fits into your old jeans, then check these out!

Do you remember my old slippers? And how much Chris loathed them? I asked you all for advice and most of you loved Ugg Slippers - so that is what he got me for Christmas. And you were SO right! Love em'!

If you've ever met me in person, then you've seen me whip out my Burt's Bees chapstick...a lot. I mean, I apply it probably 25 times a day. So maybe this isn't a 2009 top pick...its a forever top pick!

I love these open loose sweaters. I have two just like the one below from Nordstroms that I ordered on clearance for like $14.00 or something crazy cheap like that. Color? Oh, black and gray of course!

Dust it. Need I say more? If you missed my post on how Dust It changed my life, just go here.

Not a fan of boxed dinner kits? You've got to taste this one. You can see how easy it was for me here.

I'm in love with the Conair 1875 hair dryer I got at Wal-Mart for $14.00. We stayed at a hotel recently that had it and I loved it so much that I actually wrote them for the exact info on it. My hair is dry in like 3 min's with this!

I've got a ton more favorites like my long pj's from Old Navy and a cool dual shower head that's changed how I feel about getting up in the morning, but I had to stop somewhere!
What were your fave buys in 09'?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Clue Two

OK, I'm not telling you if anyone guessed correctly just yet, BUT, I have to comment on one guess! It is 100% not cruise related! I'm terrified of cruises! I'm weird, I know. (I gave this hint on Twitter - you can follow me by going here!).

Image courtesy of www (dot) mccullagh (dot) org.

FYI - totally not my ear.

OK, any more guesses?

Remember, it's not an overly specific theme!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

I'll Give You a Hint...

I've been planning Brayden's first birthday party for a few weeks now, so I thought I'd give you a hint as to his theme. I use the theme part loosely, because it's really not overly themey...if themey is even a word. By the way, Spellcheck is telling me that it is indeed not a word. I beg to differ.

I had originally (like um, before he was even born) planned to do a blue and brown monogrammed party because that's just what I wanted to do. But B seems to have a little more personality for a almost one year old than I've really ever seen before and I don't think he wanted a blue and brown monogrammed party. He's a little bit of a control freak. I have NO IDEA where he gets that from.
So above, is your hint. It's not much to go on, but I think some of you might just guess it. It's not an over the top kind of party because it's just family, so bear that in mind.
Brayden is in toy overload right now, and our house looks like the entire toy section of Wal-Mart! So, we are going to ask all of our family to donate what they would have spent on his birthday to Arkansas Children's Hospital in Brayden's honor. We're really excited about it!
OK, so any guesses?

Friday, December 25, 2009

I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas

I think this might be the last year that we all wake up before Brayden on Christmas morning.

This morning, when we heard the first peep from Mr. B, all 5 of us (my parents, brother and Chris and I) stormed in to get him. He was a little taken aback...

Our attempt at a morning family picture...he was still not really sure about what all was going on!
But once we started opening his toys he really warmed up to the idea of what was happening!

Grammy and Granddaddy got B his very first red wagon and so we propped B up - can you spot him in between all the toys?

Mr. Man and his loot!
Chris and Brayden got me a David Yurman ring with his birthstone. It matches a necklace Mom and Dad had bought me and a bracelet that Chris and B got for my first Mother's Day.

Buster showing his Christmas spirit!

My favorite gift, I don't actually have a picture of right now. But Chris sponsored a child in Honduras for me for a year (we'll continue the sponsorship of course!) through Compassion Intl. It was my favorite gift and so, so special.
Brayden with a toy in each hand...and his mouth.

Oh, and the white Christmas part?
How's this?

That's a view of our lake. And here's the bridge leading up to our cabin.

And to show you how much snow we got, here's what was on Chris' mirror when we took off for a ride around the property this morning!

Have a Merry Christmas everyone!!!

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”- Isaiah 9:6

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Twas the Night Before Christmas...

Merry Christmas Eve!!

We're spending Christmas out at my families cabin this year which is about 15 min's from my house. Grammy and Granddaddy bought Brayden a toy that proved impossible to wrap so B got an early gift!

Unkie Jeffie wanted to join in on the early gift giving too, so he let Brayden open his Elmo phone.

Buster was sad that he was being left out of the the present partaking so Chris gave him his squeaky moose toy - and then decorated him with the ribbon and bow!

We had to do cookies for Santa before heading to bed, so Brayden sat on the hearth (don't worry, that grate isn't hot) with his "Cookies for Santa" plate. The cookies are gingerbread that I baked and decorated yesterday. Santa told me they were his favorite!
And finally, our area is supposed to get a White Christmas so here is a sneak peek of what it looks like right now!
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas, and remember the real reason for the season!

All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"—which means, "God with us." Matthew 1:22-23

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Santa Baby

Today was my dad's Christmas office party and so we dressed B up and headed down.

Mom and Dad with Santa...I mean Brayden!
Unkie Jeffie:

I've really been looking forward to today because I was a secret judge in the dessert competition that they started this year! I got to sample about 20 different desserts and we picked a winner for best taste and most creative. The one that won most creative was an oreo ball that had chocolate puddled around it and the she painted it like a melting snowman. So cute!
Then it was time for the other Santa to stop by. Mr. B was over an hour late for his scheduled nap and not in the best mood by this point.
Right now, he's okay because he sees his Granddaddy and a camera...

But he just can't handle it.

For all those who think B never cries, well here's your proof!! As I'm sure you guessed, we left almost immediately after this picture was taken!
Merry almost Christmas Eve!

Monday, December 21, 2009


Here are some of the recipes you all asked for. Let me know if you make them!

Chili Verde.

Place 4 lbs of pork butt or shoulder chunks in pan and cover completely with water. Boil until water is gone and pork is tender.

Add two cloves of minced garlic, salt, pepper, 1 lg chopped onion, 1 large or 2 medium can(s) stewed tomatoes, 1 lg can of Ortega diced green chilies and 1 small jar of salsa.

Simmer for at least 1 hour. Serve wrapped in tortillas. This last time I used the cheddar jalepeno tortillas and we usually top it with grated sharp cheddar and light sour cream.

See's Fudge

2 c sugar
1 sm can evap milk (2/3 cup)
10 large marshmallows

Combine, bring to a boil cook over med and then continue to heat 5 ½ mins constantly stirring.

Combine in a bowl:
1 t vanilla
1 cup choc chips
1 stick butter (edited for Tori - I take it straight out of the fridge)
1 cup nuts (optional)

Combine all things together and cool in a buttered dish.

Being a choclate fanatic I've had a lot of fudge but this is hands down my favorite. It takes a little while to make but it's totally worth it.

Early Christmas

This past weekend we had Chris' dads family up for an early Christmas get together.

This is Chris' brother Jayce with Brayden.

Dinner - Ham, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, cranberry pineapple jello salad, rolls, and salad. My appetizer pics didn't turn out so well or I'd put those on here too.

B woke up in time from his nap to enjoy a little ham. Later I was holding him and eating a rice krispie when he lunged forward and took a big bite and chewed and swallowed it before I could get it away from him. He loves sweets apparently.
Opening his gifts.

You all wanted the See's fudge and chili verde recipes right? I will do my best to post those later. Let me know if there were any others you needed!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The many fashions of Mr. B

I've been asked a couple of times where I shop for B, so I thought I'd put together a little post about his clothes!

Really, my mom and I shop everywhere for him. Everywhere! This outfit for example...

The fleece pullover is from Kohl's, the jeans are True Religion from Nordstroms and the shoes are Puma from BRU.

This outfit came from Gymboree - I actually got it at the outlet in Branson. It also has a matching hat that hooks under his chin - the only kind I can keep on him!

But my very favorite baby store is Janie and Jack. Mainly because they have really cute stuff for boys, not just girls. If I had a girl I think I'd be in real trouble because everyone seems to make cute girl stuff!

Recently I ordered him a really cute Christmas tee from Etsy that I can't wait to show you. It was my first Etsy purchase for B!
I have clothes for him from every store from Wal-Mart to Nordstroms and I love them all! I think B does too!

Friday, December 18, 2009

I had a TON of cooking to do today so once B was up and I was showered and ready, we headed to the kitchen.

Buster wanted to help by picking up any little scrap I dropped:

While B was awake - and you can see he's already tired here - I made green bean casserole. It hasn't cooked yet, but once I cook it tomorrow I'll add the fried onions to the top.

I boiled the sweet potatos for my next casserole while B was up, then fed him and put him down for his nap so that I could slice them, and top them with brown sugar and butter. Once they bake I'll add a topping of marshmallows.

Next was See's Fudge. See's is a really wonderful candy store based in California. They have stores in a lot of states but not here. Anyway, my grandmother somehow got the recipe decades ago, and she gave it to my mom who gave it to me. I usually make 2 batches, 1 with nuts and another without, but I only had time for one today.

Then it was layer cookies and rice crispies...
And I forgot to take a pic of the jello salad, but who hasn't seen a jello salad?! Ha!
For dinner I made Chili Verde...not an overly appealing picture, but it is really good.

It's pork meat that cooks all day with salsa, chilis and a few other things.
I'm finally sitting down! Yay! But I still have a LOT to do tomorrow! Have a great weekend!
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