Sunday, December 27, 2009


Today is my nephew Marty's 40th birthday. If an occasion like that isn't a kick in your mortality, nothing is. Anyway, his mother gave the party for him today. This one is the PG version, he is having another adult party at Kirby's down in Delano this evening. It was nice to visit with him and his mother who we don't get to see that often anymore.

Christmas at my sister's house

This was my sister's year to hold the Gerdes Family Christmas. We all went over to her house in Augusta in the afternoon. The little kids all get gifts and it was chaos while they were opening everything.
I started feeling bad while I was there, and couldn't breathe. Ray took me to the ER, where it was determined that it wasn't my heart, but no one had any idea why I felt so bad. I am hoping that it was a one time allergic reaction to something there. I had never been in the emergency room as a patient before and I don't want to do it again.

Here are some pictures taken Christmas morning here at home. The Blomberg's came over for Christmas Brunch after which we opened presents. Wyatt enjoyed opening his packages a lot, and he liked what he got. Of course the clothing was tossed aside quickly. Once again, we are so blessed to have the kids so close by.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Brown Family Dinner

We had Ray's family over last night for dinner and celebrate Christmas. For a while we weren't sure if it was even going to happen. People kept cancelling out with conflicts. In the end, everyone who could make it had a great time. We had supper with chicken and noodles, vegetable soup and hoagie sandwiches. Donna provided cake and sugar cookies for dessert. Too much was eaten by every one.
Ray had the kids so excited about opening their gifts that they could barely sit down. He even got them to cooperate in putting toys away first. It felt so good to spend time with family and enjoy the Christmas season.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The last Christmas Cards

I have made ten of these cards in different colors and patterns. They are being sent to our immediate family. The photo of Ray and me was taken in October for our church directory. We actually really like the picture, and splurged and had it touched up so we looked better than we do in real life.
I used Basic Grey Eskimo Kisses paper, and die cut snowflakes from my Silhouette. The design is a scraplift from last months Creating Keepsake. The original card was by Jen Jockich.

Christmas Photos

Nicole dressed the kids in red when she brought them over and asked me to take some pictures of them. This was easier said than done today. Wyatt was cheesy smiles and Andrea was headed out of the picture every time she had an opportunity. I managed to get on Nicole like and she is going to order cards with it. I remember now why I always thought it was hard to photograph children.

Walking here, walking there

Andrea took her first steps today. I knew it was going to happen very shortly. She had been doing everything needed, but hadn't taken her first step. Luckily for her mother, she did it while Nicole was here. Of course everyone is making a big fuss over her and she is eating up all the attention.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas with my Friends, Part Two

I went out to dinner with my friends that I worked with at INTRUST last night. We go out every year at Christmas and always go to Olive Garden to eat. It is tradition after all. Diane, Toni, JoEtta, Sharon and Joyce are always a lot of fun to be with. We catch up on all the news, eat too much and sometimes get too loud. However, we have never been asked to leave, so we must be fairly well behaved. I am very blessed to have all my women friends, they enrich my life so very much.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

High Tea

Nicole and I went to high tea today with my friends from when I worked at BankIV. We do this every year for Christmas and it is a lot of fun. A couple of people only come to this tea, so it is great to see them.

See my tooth?

Actually, there are two teeth in there now. The first tooth came through about a month ago, but it took this long for it to get big enough to be seen. Andrea wouldn't let me put my finger in her mouth to feel it unless it was to chew on it. Now all Andrea needs is a top tooth and she will be able to eat pizza.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Christmas Cards

Here are three cards from the Basic Grey card set that will be done on Sunday at Scrapbook Garden. I am not teaching the class, but I asked for the instructions and I am glad I did. The class is set up as winter cards, but I was able to change the sentiments on ten of the twelve cards to Christmas. I don't know if the class is full or not, but I would encourage anyone to take the class if they want to do some hand made Christmas cards.

My Christmas Trees

This is my downstairs tree
This is the little upstairs tree

I did the Christmas decorations last night. It went easier than I expected. I had sent a lot of the stuff I didn't use any more to the church bargain sale, so all I had to do was put out what was in the crates. I might even buy some more after Christmas this year. The downstairs tree is the main tree. It is decorated with all the decorations we have collected or been given since we were married. The oldest decoration is a Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer which had been on my parents tree every since I could remember. The newest is a clay Hopi Madonna that we bought last year in Raton. It is so much fun to think about each piece when I put it on the tree. Wyatt helped this year and he was so excited. I don't remember Nicole or Andrew enjoying decorating the tree so much. It just is different with grandchildren.
The smaller tree is upstairs and is more color coordinated for the room. I do get to put part of my village pieces under there and I enjoy that. I am waiting to see how Andrea responds to the trees after she gets used to them. She clapped her hands when she first saw the big tree, but isn't paying very much attention, she is more interested in climbing up the stairs at this point.

Crazy Squirrels

Some years the squirrels go about getting ready for winter very calmly. Other years, it is like they have gone crazy and are in a panic. This seems to be one of the panic years. We have seen as many as a dozen congregating around one tree doing some sort of rodent convention. I looked out on the patio this morning to see these too climbing up and own on the posts. They didn't run off when I took their photos. Ray and I like watching the squirrels and we don't even mind feeding them along with the birds in the winter. This strange behavior is just more to enjoy watching.

Thanksgiving 2009

Here we all are gathered around the table for Thanksgiving Dinner. We had a great meal this year. The original plan was not to overdo it with the food selections. Jackie and Nicole stuck to the plan pretty well, but I kept adding to the menu. There was more than necessary left to put in the refrigerator, but not too much. It was a great day spent with family.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Like Climbing Mount Everest

Andrea is now going up the stairs by herself. It took me by surprise, luckily Ray was home and told me when she was about a third of the way up. She is fast about it too and very pleased with herself. I don't have the security of knowing that she will stay in the basement now. My baby is turning into a little girl.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Retirement Card

I just finished this card to celebrate the retirement of one of Ray's co-workers Phyllis. I hope she enjoys retired life as much as I have. I used Basic Grey Indian Summer paper, American Crafts ribbon and Prima Flowers. The colors are so warm and pretty. The design is from a sketch in the November Cardmaker magazine. I love that magazine, it keeps me going when I am stuck for an idea for a card.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Working on Christmas Cards

No pictures tonight. I have started working on Christmas cards. I am doing fourteen to sixteen of each type then I will do another design. I had hoped to get the first batch done this evening, but there is a fair amount of coloring, then cutting by hand for these, so I will finish them tomorrow. During the day if Andrea lets me. I do between 60 to 70 cards each year so avoiding boredom is key to getting the job done. At least Ray does the addressing and signing. I still have to do the annual letter. As much as I am not ready for it mentally, Christmas is coming.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Old Photo Time

This time I am going way back to 1951. This is me, my brother Jeff and my sister Chris. Chris was about three months old, Jeff was two and I was four. I don't know what Jeff got that year, but that set of dishes beside me was totally neat. They were blue and white plastic. I played with those until they disintegrated. If I remember correctly, the box in front was plastic glasseware to go with the dishes. I was Suzy Home Maker for sure.

Teresa Collins "Documented" Family Album

This is a mini album I will be doing a class on at Scrapbook Garden in December. The album uses envelopes, folders and cards by Teresa Collins. The book is bound using the Zutter Bind it All. The album isn't difficult. The hard part for me was finding and scanning in the pictures. I chose the story of my parents and our family up until I was about twelve years old. All the photos are black and white and really fits the mood of the album. I am not going to journal the album until after the class. I will print more of the old photos and put them in the envelopes. I plan to give it to a family member for Christmas.

A Little Bit will do Ya!

This photo is the result of one little tiny mini Oreo cookie. I am talking one of those little cookies less than an inch across. I gave Andrea one after lunch one day last week. I went to clean up the kitchen and when I looked over at her this is what I saw. Of course I realized a photo opportunity when I saw it. Out came the camera and little Miss Chocolate Face cooperated by giving me this huge grin. I hid the bag with the rest of the cookies. Her brother can eat those, she is going to be limited to animal crackers.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Halloween Pages 2009

I finished the Halloween pages for Andrea and Wyatt today. I used my Paperworks Kit for October. The paper really did suit the pictures I took this year.