Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Birds of Winter

Cold and snow mean lots of birds in our yard. Here are few shots from the last few days.

One of these things is not like the other
I was so excited to see a Cedar Waxwing mixed in with the flock of Robins. I hardly ever see these birds and they are so pretty.

Robin in the snow
BERRIES!... it's what's for dinner!

Windy Much?
Hold on tight little lady cause it sure is windy today!

Dark-Eyed Junco sitting atop a snow pile.

One of my favorites
One of my favorite winter visitors. This bright Pine Warbler hangs around all winter.

Blue Jays love them or hate them, they are fascinating...big gluttonous pigs....but fascinating.

Phoebe & Charlotte's favorite past time
Why have all this bird action if you can't play with them??
Jeez, no fair!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas 2010

Christmas was perfect this year. So many times I reminded myself to take in the moment and breathe it in and lock it away. That's one of the good lessons that cancer teaches you - being aware of trying to live in the moment more often.

My mom spent the holiday with us so it was just the 5 of us. It was wonderful to be with the people I love and spend time just being together. No schedules, no orders, nothing but being in the moment and being together. We were again thankful for the reason we actually celebrate Christmas. The birth of Christ. He revealed himself to me that first night Ellie was in the hospital and I am so thankful for his birth and the sacrifice he made for all of us. Ellie is here with us and we are so very thankful as a family for this amazing blessing.

The other side of Christmas was great too. Ellie and Emma were so happy with their gifts. We are fortunate to give our girls many things and we know better than to spoil them silly but we do like to go a teensy bit overboard. We also spoiled my mom a little this year too. I got her a few Williraye pieces and Steve got her a George Forman grill so she can whip up a nice juicy steak without having to go and turn on the gas grill outside and then we gave her her favorite gift...a new color Nook. It's the latest e-reader from Barnes & Noble and I know she is going to really love it. She reads a lot so this was perfect. She can also borrow library books with it and lend books to me on my Ipad. Glad my mom is so hi-tech and savvy in her golden years.

Steve and I don't like to over do it with each other at all since we both agree Christmas is for the kids but we both gave each other some really nice things. We decided this year to have turkey for Christmas dinner. We were so sad that we didn't have leftovers at Thanksgiving this year (we went away for Thanksgiving) so it was a no brainer to make turkey. Steve actually made it all. He always make a delicious turkey. As we sat to eat in the dinning room, the snow began to fall really hard. It was perfect. I wish my dad were with us but he was there in spirit and I know he is much happier where he is now.

Merry Christmas everyone - I hope you enjoyed yours as much as I enjoyed mine.

Santa was here
Christmas Eve after Santa arrived and the girls were sleeping.

grandma and her girls
Grandma Marilyn and the girls on Christmas Eve

Christmas snacks
Holiday treats!

Sweet Ellie
Merry Christmas from Ellie!

So happy
Surprise! Emma so wanted this jacket but didn't think she was getting it. Love when a surprise actually works out!

Crafting Mama
A new DS game for Ellie. She has Cooking Mama, Gardening Mama and now Crafting Mama.

A new DS
The DS is compliments of Grandma. She was using Emma's old one for a long time and now she has her very own.

3x the fun
Justin Bieber times 3! She is in heaven

Who wants coffee?
Steve adores his new coffee maker!

New Brighton Jewelry!
New Brighton Jewelry for me!

Snow on Christmas
Christmas Day as the snow started to fall.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Almost Finished...

I am nearing the light at the end of the work tunnel. Finally!! Oi Vhey, I am getting too old to work these many hours. My yearly cold decided that last week would be a fabulous time to visit too and I have been suffering through with some painful sinuses over the last few days. I can deal with that for the most part - cannot deal with the lovely cold sores that sprung up because of the virus. So with my scary looking thumb (the nail came off this week so I have half of a flesh thumb at the top because the nail hasn't grown that far yet) and my oh so pretty mouth sores, I am looking like something more Halloweenish than Christmasy. Stress, the gift that keeps on giving. But all the major stresses are behind me now. First and foremost, clean, clear and cancer free scans for Ellie, work orders are almost done and my yearly cold has pretty much come and gone. It has to be smooth sailing into 2011. I'm ready.

Next week the girls have off (and the past two days due to snow) and we have some craft days lined up, pedicures, going to see Tangled and some baking. Lots to look forward to... Yeah for normal hours and having a life again!

A days worth of orders in early December.
We were doing about 35 teacher notepads a day.

We sold a ton of melamine plates this season. They are so cute!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas Ornaments

I am working as hard as one of Santa's elves these days getting all of the holiday orders for Tickle Bellies out the door. 10 more days or so of the craziness and then I am thinking I can take a break. I have been able to sneak in lots of online shopping over the last two weeks so I am actually chipping away nicely at my gift list. Kudos to me and to online shopping too! So since I am soooo busy right now with work and not venturing out of the house much, I thought I would show you some of the ornaments that adorn our tree.

Our Christmas tree is quite the hodge-podge of ornaments. Some are handmade by the girls, some are of their favorites characters or shows from whatever it was they were into that particular year, there are those that Steve and I got together as a couple or that were given to us and then ones that I have fallen in love with and purchased myself. I try to get at least one special ornament each year. So many memories hang on those branches. There is nothing better than sitting with some hot cocoa at night in front of the tree reminiscing.
So here is a little photo display of some ornaments that adorn the Bouchard Family Christmas tree.

This beautiful ornament sits atop the tree, a bit crooked, but I love it!
Williraye are one of my favorite collectibles and I have many pieces throughout the house.

This was a wedding gift. So glad it hasn't broken over the last 18 years

Ornament from my girlfriend Laurel from many years ago

Emma made this in elementary school

Ellie loves Ariel...
She got this several years ago but still smiles each time we take her out. Oh and she sings too.

This is probably my favorite ornament. I bought this the year Steve and I were married to go on our first 'official' Christmas tree. Classic Hallmark. The cookies in Santa's belly move around and now it is one of Ellie's favorite ornaments.

Krinkle ornament that I got in a cute shop in downtown Richmond a few years ago.
Sadly that shop became a casualty of the recession. :( ba humbug!

Just look at them!
Ellie was about 13 months old & Emma is 7.
We lived in Marlyand at the time of this photo.

I believe my mom got this for me. She knows I love birds almost as much as Ellie loves Ariel.

More Williraye - sigh...

This is for our Shepherds - Austin and Shane. We miss them

This snowman isn't technically on the tree but he is sitting at a neighboring table so I am including him. Another cute Williraye snowman.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Woo Hoo!

Tis the season for me to be super duper busy! A quick update to tell you that Ellie had her 3 month check-up at St Jude on December 1st. Thanking the good Lord above that she remains cancer free. We don't have to head back to St Jude until May 31st now. What a nice break that will be! So happy that stressful time is behind us (for a while anyway).

Plugging along with work for the next 2 weeks so I will update when I can... Enjoy the beauty of the season!