Thursday, December 31, 2009
In February, I went on the Girlfriends Cruise.
In March, I had my 34th birthday.
In April, we took the kids to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.
In May, I had the best Mothers Day ever!
In June, we hosted a fun family reunion with my Mom's family.
In July, we had an awesome trip to Maui with the Victorine family.
In August, the kids started a fun soccer season.
In September, we celebrated Abigail's 9th birthday on 9/9/09.
In October, Sandi and I shot our first wedding together; Andy and I celebrated our 11th anniversary, and we celebrated J.T.'s 6th birthday.
In November, we had a great Thanksgiving weekend and I re-designed my photography website.
In December, we had a great Christmas and I found ebates.com.
2009 was very good to our family. It makes me happy to look back and see all the wonderful things that happened.
There is one other thing I want to add to my highlights of 2009.... that is my re-connection with my friend Sandi. We were very good friends many years ago and lost touch for various reasons. We reconnected this past summer and I am so glad we did. Not only do we share the love of photography, but we have many other things in common too. Our love of bargain hunting is very dangerous! Our kids have gotten to be buddies too, which has been fun to watch. I look forward to enjoying our friendship even more in 2010!
Monday, December 28, 2009
We had a great Christmas! The kids were very excited about what Santa brought them! A few photos from Christmas Day....
The Nintendo DSi's they received....
Santa even left gifts at Grandma Pam and Grandpa Charlie's house....
Grandpa Charlie wrapped up an orange for J.T.....
Sunday, December 27, 2009
The kids (not so) patiently waiting to open gifts after dinner....
Abigail was very excited about her new American Girl Bitty Baby that she received...
And J.T. was ecstatic about his new Lego set. He said, "This is the best day of my life!" He and Andy are looking at all the pieces...
We had a great meal and lots of fun exchanging gifts. Thanks Grandpa Chet and Granny Karen!
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Abigail loved holding her cousin, Miss A...
Santa brought Abigail an indian doll...
And J.T. got some leather chaps... he was so excited!
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
The Bible tells us that it is better to give than to receive. Giving of ourselves isn't just the right thing to do, it makes us feel great. We get a wonderful feeling when we give or do something that makes someone else happy or helps them with a problem. There's no doubt that giving is good.
But while we have been taught that it is nobler to give than to receive since childhood, I think it is also noble to receive. How would we feel if a person to whom we are giving said, "I don't like this," or "I already have one." If someone pays you a compliment and you respond with, "It was nothing" or "No, it really wasn't that good," deflecting their compliment also deflects the joy of the giver, because the compliment wasn't fully accepted. Rather than deflecting or diminishing the message, what if we responded, "Wow, thanks. That really means a lot to me."
Sometimes receiving is even better than what passes for giving! Giving with the expectation of getting something in return or making someone feel guilty isn't really giving at all. It is emotional blackmail.
We are rotten receivers. Many of us are uncomfortable with compliments. We feel that we should get everyone a gift who gives us a gift. We are so uncomfortable receiving that even when we desperately need help, we are reluctant to ask for it.
This Christmas there will be a lot of giving, and therefore there will be lots of receiving. Focus on being a good receiver. Let the gifts, especially the emotional gifts of love, kindness and support, have their full impact so that the giver can experience the full joy of giving.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
We started our week of Christmas celebrations with the Renner (Andy's mom's side) family progressive dinner last night. We visited three houses for appetizers, dinner, and dessert. We ended the evening at Andy's mom's house with a festive game of bingo complete with prizes!
Tonight, we will celebrate with Chet and Karen (Andy's dad and step-mom) at their new home in Fortuna. Dinner, gift exchange, and family togetherness will make it a great evening!
I will update as the week progresses.... Have a wonderful Christmas week everyone!!
Monday, December 21, 2009
Fortuna Middle School's 8th grade graduating class...
It's been a great year. Thank you to all my clients who made it such a fun year! I look forward to 2010...
Friday, December 18, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Christmas shopping done-- check.
Tree up and decorated-- check.
Lights on outside of house-- check.
Christmas baking done-- check.
Gifts all wrapped--almost done.
Christmas dinner menu planning-- not even close!
I guess we better decide what we are having for Christmas dinner so I don't have to do the shopping at the very last minute...
Friday, December 11, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Mary, Jeff and Michela arrived Wednesday night. We went to my parents' house on Thursday morning to hang out and visit. The kids had a great time playing with Michela!
On Saturday morning, my mom treated Mary and I to pedicures, while she watched the three kids. Thanks Mom! After that, we attempted to get some pictures of the kids in their Christmas outfits. It was a little challenging, but we got a few. Here's one of the favorites....
On Saturday night, we went to Shamus T Bones to celebrate my parents' anniversary (on Friday). The food was great and it is always cool seeing my western photos up on the wall.
Mary, Jeff and Michela left this morning. The four of us and my dad went riding this afternoon at the beach. It was such a beautiful day with no wind! Just amazing..... My mom came along too so she was able to take a couple pictures of us all...
We had a great weekend, to say the least! Now it's back to the routine of school days...