Saturday, December 19, 2009


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PICTURES! Yes, pictures! Thanks to our friend and neighbor, Pam! My mother-in-law came down (3 hrs. away) on Tuesday. I asked her to bring her software for her camera so that I could load it on my computer. That way, whenever she comes to visit I can get the pictures right away. She doesn't have a computer, so she just uses her memory card at Rite Aid. I took several pictures of the boys for our Christmas photo, only to discover that we never thought of her USB cable! She never uses it, so she didn't think of it... Then that same night, I called our neighbor who has the same camera as my broken one. In fact it's because we liked hers that we decided to get the Fuji FinePix! I was able to borrow it for the next couple of days. I took LOTS of pictures. 71 of the boys the first day and 102 of them the next day. Believe it or not, there were only 3 pictures to choose from (out of 173--so you don't have to do the math!) Sure there are a lot of fun ones--making faces, turned away, laughing with mouths wide open! It was difficult to give back ;o( Didn't realize just how much I missed taking pictures!

Christmas is coming too fast for me! Not ready yet. It took me quite a while to get in the Christmas mood. I don't know why... maybe it's the weather. We had a little snow a couple of weeks ago. That helped. It sure is cold now though! Glad I'm not in Virginia or Maryland!! That's where my mother-in-law is now visiting Jim's brother! They're getting hit hard!

Last Sunday was the Christmas Cantata at church. My niece Leighanna is in the adult choir. Nathan, Jared and my other niece Rebecca sang in a small group of 9 kids for a couple of songs with the adult choir. At the last minute, Jared had a small solo in one o the songs--the other boy didn't feel well. It was sweet to hear Jared. They sang the contemporary version of I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day. Typically I don't like modernization of traditional songs, but I really like this. It's arranged by the lead singer of Casting Crowns. Here's a link to a video of the song.

This coming Sunday, my boys and my nieces will sing in a worship choir for the Sunday School Christmas program at church. I can't wait! They have a 2-hour rehearsal tomorrow, and Jared really wants to sing a solo! They'll know who gets what solos tomorrow! I wish Nathan would do a solo, but at this time, he thinks it's a fate worse than death! Owen can't wait until he can join a choir!! They all sing well. Both N & J can sing harmony, which I think is a blessing. A couple of weeks ago, I heard Owen sing a harmony line in a song. I was so excited! I taught them when they were very young -- it comes naturally to me. They also listened to the Gaither Vocal Band regularly when they were little, so hearing those harmonies helped reinforce harmonies.
Owen will be dressed as a shepherd singing with his Sunday School class.

Next Wednesday, Jim's Mom comes back this way -- she'll fly into Albany from Baltimore. She'll spend the night with us, and the boys and I will take her half-way home where we'll meet Jim's brother Jerry who will pick her up. For some reason, she was okay taking the bus to Albany, but she doesn't want to take it going back home. It's the day before Christmas Eve... it'll be a really tight squeeze, time-wise, but we'll get it all done (I hope!!)

I still haven't composed a Christmas family letter! I don't know if I will get one done this year.

Here are a few holiday pictures...

Blue Ribbon Sugar Cookies (we love them, and they're super easy to make!)

Owen posing in front of our tree (doesn't he look innocent?)

Our basket of Christmas books

Just one of the many goofy photos I got the 2nd day!

I think it was finally getting to Nathan! This was near the end of 102!

Gotta call it a night. It's late again. I never manage to get to bed before 12:30! Until next time...

blessings, joie

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


This is our second snowfall of the season! The boys are outside shoveling our "parking lot". The idea is grand until they do it for a short while. Then they're complaining! Not a good thing...
Update: Nathan and Jared ended up doing a great job on the driveway! Dad was really pleased!
I'm adding a few pictures from Christmases past...

20 years ago with my sisters!

I can hardly believe it's already the 9th of December! I'm not ready for Christmas yet! I cannot proudly boast that I'm done with my shopping. Hey! Christian Book Distributors (CBD) has a free shipping deal going on until midnight tomorrow (12/10) I'm definitely taking advantage of that! Your order has to subtotal $35 or more to get the free shippig--easy to do! I placed one order already for Christmas, but I found that there are several more things I want--marked down 90% Gotta love that! Just enter promotion code 305633 at check out!

Sisters 1972

Hoping to make cookies and watch a Christmas video today. Sadly, Nathan and Jared don't seem to be interested in Christmas videos this year.... :o( It kind of surprises me. Owen has watched The Little Drummer Boy 4 times already!

Christmas with my cousins--1964
(I'm front and center!)
Instead of "Keep Christ in Christmas", we believers should "Keep Christmas ABOUT Christ!" There's a world of difference!

Until next time...

blessings, joie
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Saturday, December 5, 2009


Well, the Christmas season is upon us. It doesn't seem that long since we celebrated last year! It's a little like the Twilight Zone!

I'm writing this blog AROUND the pictures I posted from Picasa. I can't change the order, once they're on, but I can move my text around.

As you can hear, I put up my Christmas playlist on the blog! It was fun creating it! There are a LOT of songs that I would've like to put on it that just aren't on

I STILL have no camera to use; it's so frustrating. Not sure what I'll do for Christmas. I really don't want to get a cheap camera just to get by. Since I love to add pictures on my blog, I decided to use some from LAST Christmas.

A cute photo of Owen from LAST Christmas

This is the picture I took last year of my neighbor's lawn that they used for the Christmas card. I was so tickled!

We have our tree up and many colored light strands around the house. We even have lights up outside this year! I think it's the first time ever. A few years ago, Jim thoughtfully put up C-9 lights along the A-frame of the roof. When we plugged them in, they didn't work anymore! We were all disappointed. After all that work, I told him to forget about them... Nathan's the one that's hung ALL our lights this year. He enjoys it and I have no problem letting him!

Our tree from last year with some notes I was going to scrapbook with.

After much thought, I've decided to let Nathan start his own blog. Actually, it was MY idea! I read recently on a homeschooling/homesteading blog of the value of kids doing blogs. I want it to be his, but he has rules to follow. I consider it an on-going learning project--part of school. He'll develop skills in: typing, vocabulary, punctuation, spelling, creative writing, communication, and faith-training--just to name a few. I'm excited about this. Jim, on the other hand, doesn't share my excitement. I assured him that Nathan's time will be limited, and EVERYTHING will be approved of by me before it is posted--even down to his playlist! We spent time last night creating his blog playlist together. Since the advertising messages are sometimes offensive, I'M the only one who will be on the Playlist website. My goal is to help him with the sharing of his faith, his ideas, and his interests. He's already planning on adding recipes, Scripture verses etc. I have to be careful, as I'm very controlling, and want this to be his. Again, as in life, there are rules to follow. He's only put a very short post on so far. Last night, after creating his playlist, it was too late. So shortly he'll be creating a new post. Check out his blog at Your encouragement and comments will be so appreciated by both of us! Add yourself as a follower to his an my blog! It only takes a click if you have a google account. If not, it only takes a minute to sign up!

(last year's Christmas photo shoot)
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Until next time...
blessings, joie

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