Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmastime is..

lingering. The decorations that once adorned every square inch of our quaint home are now in the comforts of the gray totes they came out of almost a month ago. And all that remains of our beautiful Christmas tree can be found in our vaccuum bag. All the presents that we graciously have accepted from our dearest loved ones have found a place in our home as well. Well, almost all of them. Some will have to wait until tomorrow when I have more energy. Christmas music will no longer be blaring from every speaker in our home or cars. Traditions that I have grown so found of, some old, some new.. have been kept up and done another year. And the memories will be well preserved within our minds and of course, plenty of pictures.

Yet, something is lingering here. Something majestic. Can you sense it? Do you feel it? (No, I'm not talking about the indigestion you have from eating far too much.)

I pray you truly feel it. You know, that nostalagia that comes with Christmastime and all the wonderful festivities. But unfortunately, I know for many of you.. you may not feel it. Maybe its because you may not truly comprehend what happened that special night over 2000 years ago. A baby boy was born. But not just any baby. It was JESUS! The Lord and The Savior! And this baby that was born over 2000 years ago, that grew to be a child.. who grew to be a teenager.. who grew to be a man.. who then laid down His life to cover all our sins.. and then rose again 3 days still rocking this world. His life and His story is still being told.. its still being worshipped.. and its never going to die down.

So while the presents that came in celebration over His birth are so very nice and gladly accepted, I can't describe to you the unexplainable joy I have over this baby boy being born. Its something far deeper and more meaningful than nostalagia.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Oh, and Did I mention..

that the Amazing Mr. had a really amazing surprise waiting for me when I got home? 

Jade and I left the house looking like a tornado had blown through mine and the Mr.'s room. We came home to find that the Amazing Mr. cleaned it and the rest of the upstairs from top to bottom. (Coming and going all weekend leaves the house in a little dis-array with multiple wardrobe changes flying about in there.)

To top it off, he treated his lucky ladies to a wonderful dinner at one our favorite-but-not-frequented-too-often restaurants. Oh NitNoi, with your creamy peanut sauce, soft spring rolls (and crunchy for the Mr.), and Peanut Chicken.. we love you! And just in case you were wondering, Precious Princess favors her Daddy's preference of spring rolls.

Christmas Cookies

Last year's Cookie Day with a very rosy, cheeked, just-summoned-from-a-nap-through-it-all Jade.

The much anticipated, favoritist (almost at least) Christmas tradition has come and gone folks! When I was younger, I could not wait for Christmas Cookie day with my Granny and siblings. Who wouldn't be excited about eating (i.e. sneaking when Granny wasn't looking) cookie dough until your ears are practically oozing it out?

As I've gotten older, the real joy is in seeing my nieces and nephews take such delight in this special day with Granny. I pray that Jade will be able to have some of these special memories with Granny also. For now, she is only interested in terrorizing her younger cousins and mooching food off of people.

Next year, I will make motion that we start Cookie Day at 6am. Last year, we were supposed to start early.. like 9ish. I don't think a batch of cookie dough was actu
ally made until like 12. This year, it was supposed to be 12:30. We started around like 3:30. Don't ask me what we did for 3 hours before we actually "got to it." I couldn't tell you.
What happens when you leave kids alone in the kitchen for 10 minutes that are supposed to be diligently working on their cut-out cookies?
A self-inflicted flour face of course!
The Money Shot A*K*A* posed picture for the sake of memories. Jade did not really particpate much in the actual cookie day. However, we do have a few photos that say otherwise.

Sadly, this is probably the most Jade and I contributed to cookie day. Girlfriend was all about exploring her aunt, uncle and cousin's new house. And I was busy chasing after her, snapping pictures and getting approximately all of 30 seconds of video footage.

I can't wait until next year!!!

Weekend Recap

The somewhat condensed version.

Friday : Amazing Mister's company Christmas party, great prizes, awesome food, good company and conversation. Thank you to Nana and Papoo for entertaining our precious Princess while we were at the festivities.

By Saturday, we were getting into the groove of Christmas celebrating. We headed over to Meemaw and Pawpaw's a little early to get in some extra sweet lovin' and cheek squishin' for one of our new little cousins that lives several states away. Unfortunately, the rest of the Brantner clan had the same idea we did. But who am I kidding? It was great to get to hang with the fam without feeling like we were rushed. Although, Precious Princess was pretty much napless that day and was surely testing our patience! Girlfriend snatched toys left and right from younger cousins, shrieked, and was a terror. But of course, she had her undeniably cute Ms. Priss angelic moments too. 
Jade being "chute." She does this a lot to show off.

Sunday was the perfect end to a great weekend. That morning we went to see Jade's absolute favorite cousin sing in his little Christmas program. (You know, the cousin's name she says only about 5 million times a day.) I'm not sure he expected to see her there though. She kept "shouting" his name, and when he finally looked at her.. it was priceless. His face lit up.. and it was like he was performing just for her. I'm so grateful that Jade has such a close bond with her big cousin. After church, we enjoyed the best lunch ever at Outback, which was a very rare treat for us. Jade took an awesome 2.5 hour nap. And before we knew it, we were heading out the door again.

Our church worship band (with a few special guests) put on Andrew Peterson's "Behold the Lamb of God." I'm a little biased, but I'm not sure many would disagree. We have like the best Worship Team ever! I mean sure, they have bu-coo's of talent.. but they also really worship with their entire being.. and I love it! The words of each song sang were so powerful. And like our worship pastor said (well, paraphrasing here) I always thought of Christ's birth as the beginning. But really.. its just another step in God's plan. He had this whole thing ordained and thought out way back in Exodus. 

Oh and PTL, Jade was truly a precious princess that night. They did not have nursery, so we were at the mercy of whatever I had packed to entertain her. Baby Girl "colurred" for at least 30 minutes with a pen and piece of paper, snacked until her belly button almost popped, and went through other knick-knacks I had packed in all of about 5 minutes each. Overall, she did spectacular during the hour-long musical.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Much Better

Saturday should have been a little clue as to how our week might turn out. But yesterday almost took the cake. Pretty Princess got to bed pretty late Wednesday night, tossed and turned throughout the night, and woke up bright-eyed but not so bushytailed at 7 am on Thursday! Say what?!?! We had a Christmas Party the night before.. so I had stayed up late working so I wouldn't have a bazillion things to do the next day. Needless to say, I was not too enthuiastic about Miss Priss waking up early. The morning was rough, the afternoon to mid day was splendid (we went to Chick-fil-a with Jade and two of her favorite cousins), and our late afternoon was not much better. We were both tired, cranky and a bit out of sorts.

When KK picked Little Miss and I up that evening for a girls night out with some of the family, I mentioned that I wasn't sure if most of the day went awry because of the Little One's attitude or mine. At the end of the day, I was exhausted and felt like a no good Mommy.

Today, however, has proven to be just what we needed. A day filled with laughter, playing, puzzles, coffee (mostly for me), lots of kisses, a little cuddling, coloring and much needed napping.

I think its a beautiful start to a wonderful weekend! Its amazing how Father God takes care of us even in the smallest things. Praise the Lord for our joyful spirits today and for a day just to be Mommy and Daughter!

Tonight we have the Amazing Mister's company party (and Jade will get to spend time with her beloved Nana, Papoo and some more of her favorite cousins), tomorrow we have an extended family Christmas celebration, and Sunday we will go see two wonderful Christmas Concerts. The first concert will be performed by one of the cutest red-headed kids. And the 2nd will be performed by the best Worship Team ever!! (Our church worship team is putting on Behold The Lamb of God. Never seen it, but super excited to!)

Which will take us right into a whole week with the Amazing Mister being at home with us!! We are so excited! And of course, there will be non-stop Christmas Festivities going on that week!! (Monday, much anticipated Christmas tradition of making cookies with my Granny, sisters, neices and nephews! This started with my older sister and has been an ongoing tradition for like 30 years! Tuesday, good dinner with good friends! Just an excuse to have friends over and use the Christmas dishes we were given almost 3 years ago at a "Christmas" shower that was thrown for us. Wednesday, Christmas Eve celebration with Amazing Mister's maternal extended family, and then a celebration with my extended family. Thursday, CHRISTMAS!! Hang here for a blink of an eye, shoot over to my mom's for Christmas Breakfast, then to Kk & Pop's for "linner"-late lunch:early dinner-, quite possibly a movie. Friday, Christmas morning do-over at KK & Pops.. with Amazing Mister's immediately family. We always do this the day before CHristmas Eve or day after Christmas.. spend the night, watch movies, and wake up next morning like its Christmas day!)

SO, the next time you hear from me, I will probably be sweating red and green all over...because I will just be oozing of Christmas-y.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

I'm tired ya'll.

Our day, in semi-random order (because I'm too tired to remember the real order):

*alarm goes off at 6:15am for no apparent reason. After a little bit of half-asleep headscratching, we come to the conclusion that MS. Princess must have been playing with the buttons yesterday.
*have a nice breakfast with Amazing Mr. while Jade was recovering (i.e. sleeping in) from her late night of gazing on Christmas Lights with KK, Pops and the whole rest of the Brantner/Skinner/ Weaver/McKee bunch.
*Princess wakes up, eat & get dressed in a flash
*Wonderful Aunt Marlene picks us up to begin our day of fun
*Drop by two houses to pick/drop radom things up/off
*head down to Aunt Marlene's house so she can "freshen up" before we meet Amazing Mr. for lunch
*had GOOD lunch with Amazing Mr.
*race over to complete opposite side of town to amazing tea party hosted by one of Aunt M's new friends
*Jade acts worse than a bull in a China closet, I had maybe two sips of tea
*Jade tumps ENTIRE cup of tea all over both us
*Momma almost loses it from embarrassment, instead musters enough grace and humility to give my most sincere apology to the host
*head back to Aunt M's house to wait on Mr. to get out of school
*Ms. Princess refuses to stay asleep when I try to lay her down at Aunt M's house
*Mr. gets out of school, we head to Galleria
*walk 10 million miles in my pointy toe heels
*make one measley purchase at Macy's
*eat awesome Mexi food, but realize we want something sweet
*walk halfway cross the Galleria to Candy Store, then walk right back by Restaurant to our parking garage
*Get home after being gone from house for nearly 13 hours
*NOw, going to go pass out from the exhaustion.. or may shamelessly beg Amazing Mr for footrub.


Friday, December 12, 2008

I heart...


Holy Cow. I told Mr. Amazing that his concert tonight was almost a toss up between Coldplay. I nearly got kicked out of the moving truck. No, but seriously it was awesome. I don't know when the last time I danced that much was. No. Wait. To be honest, it was earlier today when Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas" came on the radio. But you get the point.

I have to admit, when we were invited to go, I didn't give the concert my 100% excited reaction. Of course I was looking forward to a fun evening out with friends..and I always enjoy a concert. But I don't know every single Toby song by heart. Needless to say, my expectations were not very high. Even if they had been, I think they still would have been TOTALLY blown away.

"What would people say if they find out its true? Oh, oh, oh!"

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

While on Hiatus..

The precious princess and I had the pleasure of going with our Mothers Day In group from church to the Children's Museum downtown. We both had a blast and came home completely tuckered out. 

I guess I should start at the beginning. Ever since I can remember, I've wanted to be a mom. Not just a mom, but a Mommy. When I had Jade, I dreamt of the day when I could all day just playing with her and teaching her about the awesome God we serve. And along with playing with her, I imagined us being a part of a play group.. and raising her in the environment I had growing up. I have such fond memories of spending time over at my own friend's houses while the moms made those hideous jumpers that were so popular for little girls in the late 80's. 

Well, while I was on hiatus from blogging, Jade and I went to the Children's Museum with our Mothers Day In program from church. I don't know who had more fun, me or Jade. Not only was the Museum so completely AWESOME (and super cheap), but it was a dream come true for me. Seeing Jade interact with kids around her same age, and being part of something that I've so longed for! We are so incredibly blessed to call our church "home" and to have such wonderful friends there!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Did you notice?

The sidebar had to go. I put a nice little doo-wop up a while back, bragging about all the words Jade can say now. But Little Girl has become quite the chatterbox lately. Somebody told me she is like a little parakeet, and by George, I think they've got it. Sometimes, I wonder where she really learns the things she says. And just bless your heart if you make it all the way through this post! (This is mainly to document her newest little milestones for us, but indulge if you wanna!)

But some things that we have really been working on are animals and their sounds. So far, we have "hoewiss" (horse), cat, dog, sheep, cow, owl, pig, rooster, and duck. But when we get to fish... and making fish lips, she just looks at me like I'm a weirdo. 

I think the most fun we are having at this stage though, is actually seeing how her little brain correlates things. Like when I pick up my phone during the day, Princess instinctively says "Dada?" (Because 90% of the time we actually call him.) Or sometimes she'll say "Dada go?" (Like where is he?) And I'll say "work." Or sometimes we'll say someone's name like Nana.. and she'll say "Papoo."

And Precious Princess may soon become a little Domestic Diva. She loves to "holp" (help) me clean, cook, do the laundry and the dishes! So, every time I get ready to do my "chores", Baby Girl is right there waiting for her little instructions. While unloading the dishwasher inevitably takes 20 minutes now, it is so precious to see her taking such delight in "holping."

Merry Christmas...

and Happy Thanksgiving.. and Happy Halloween!

Now, lets just backtrack a minute, shall we? Jade was the cutest little Punk Rock Princess this year for halloween. We had the best time at a fall festival with some of our closest friends and family and their kiddos. And at this fall festival, they had horse rides. The princess didn't quite know what a horse was at the time, or how to say it at least. But since the girl is such an animal lover, we figur
ed she would love it. So, when it was her turn for a ride on the horse, she really didn't know what to think. But after about half a minute, she decided it was the best ever! After the fun at the festival, we headed over to Buffalo Wild Wings..and that was our Halloween.

Thanksgiving this year was awesome. My green bean casserole got great reviews from my husband at both festivities we attended. Our daughter, on the other hand, was not impressed with Turkey Day food at all. The girl wouldn't touch a thing on her plate. However, I'm pretty sure there may have been some nutritional value in the 8 pounds of cookies, crackers, and bread she filled up on! And no worries about the Princess packing on anything from all the carbs she had. Baby Girl did nothing but run and play HARD at both festivities. Needless to say, we were all pooped after all the fun!

**This is where I wanted to insert a cute Thanksgiving picture of Jade. But all I got were shots of her running around like a little loon!**

And finally Merry Christmas! My FAVORITE time of year. Where we get to celebrate the birth of Jesus. The Christ. The Savior! I pray that I would truly be focused on that this year, and that we would help our Precious Daughter see that He is truly the reason we are celebrating.
And so, I leave you with a blast from the past. (Please excuse the tag on Ms. Minnie Pearl's hat.)