Sunday, December 20, 2009

This is the picture that should have gone into our Christmas cards!

And, for my record, (so I will remember what we went through while taking this picture) I'd like to note how many devices we used to hold our camera, which has a curved bottom, up right. Head bands, one of Cambree's shoes, a cow stolen from one of the nativity sets, several books, a jewelry box, a Playbill, wooden blocks....we got creative.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Advent

Well, I did it. I found a picture of a really cool project and actually completed it successfully.
Well, mostly.

I convinced my mom to do one too and she ended up making 3 in less time than it took me to make this one. But I am a beginner. This was my first big machine applique project and my very first attempt at free motion quilting. I love the look of free motion quilting and I plan on getting better in future projects. If only I could get my little sewing machine to help me out. :)

I don't know if you can tell but the number squares are actually little pockets. We have cute little Christmas quotes and Mad Gabs and fill-in-the-blanks in ours, one to read each day (Thanks Mom!)
I love the fabrics. It is so colorful and cheerful on our drab wall.

I think I just might keep it up year round.

I found the project (as well as many others for my "future project" list) here.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Thanks for the Giving

We have been blessed so much by visits from The Grandmas and Grandpa. My (Julie's) parents surprised us a couple months ago with the news that they would be joining us for Thanksgiving. While far away at the time, it has been something I have been looking forward to eagerly for months. As it happens, their week here was wonderful but it was over way too quickly and now I am still mourning their departure. But what am I saying? This is a Thanksgiving post after all.

From the moment Grandma and Grandpa walked in the door, our girls were nonstop grins and giggles (ok, so maybe that describes me too). Grins for Grandma who shared her eyebrow pencil and lip gloss and all the gum from her purse and who read them story after story, never mind the pushing and shoving for the best section of her lap. And Silly Grandpa Mark, for tickling and horsey rides and popcorn and for teaching them what it means to be "full of bologna".

We enjoyed a small, somewhat quiet Turkey Day from what we have been used to and the food, if I do say so myself, was excellent. (I definitely recommend brining your turkey next year if you haven't yet tried it. The girls particularly liked the legs!) The boys ran a 5k in the am in frigid temps and us ladies came along -- shivering-- to cheer them on. On Friday instead of hitting the shops, we went to our apple/pumpkin farm and cut down our Christmas tree. Chilly again but lots of fun keeping up with that tradition. I think I would be sad someday if we are unable to have a live tree in our home. Ah, but I am so grateful for it. It looks beautiful, smells beautiful and adds so much life and cheer to our front room. Cambree still oohs and ahhs every time we turn on the lights and has loved more than one ornament to death. Haylee is very good at watering the tree and reminding me to vacuum up the needles or plug in the lights.

This holiday season has filled our 2 little girls with wonder and it is so fun to watch. I can't wait to see what the rest of the season will bring!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Halloween II

We continued on with our haunted gingerbread houses. Unlike last year, however, I had LOTS of help. We invited a family from our ward over to join us and while it was a little chaotic and there was little sticky bits of candy absolutely everywhere for a week or was all expected and who cares. I think we will definitely keep up the tradition.

More goodies....the chocolate cookies with the candy corn kisses were yummy. A nice variation on the PB ones and...

You can't not do Halloween sugar cookies can you? Well, we can't.

Ok, isn't this cool (despite the horrible pic)? I got the idea here and I really like how it turned out. Because of BJ's current occupation, however, we referred to it as our "Freaky Pharmacy"

Surprise, surprise. # 2 is the one getting gooey and # 1 is staying as far away as possible from the yucky stuff. She did, however, give very explicit directions to how her Hello Kitty jackolantern was to be carved.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

1 of 28

Did you know that November is NaBloWriMo ??? Or, for us not-in-the-knowers, National Blog Writing Month.

It's an annual
challenge to post on your blog each and every day throughout the 30 days of

My watch says it is the 3rd, which means I am 2 days late. But I don't really care. I think I will still try to post something every day for the remainder of this month. Don't worry, I will try my absolute hardest to keep things interesting. Mind you, it might not be as interesting to you as it is to me. Oh well. Maybe I'll share some deep thoughts too and that would be interesting.

I think I will start with Halloween.

Everyone else is doing it. I did go a bit overboard with Halloween this year so I have a lot to post/share and so I will probably split it up a bit. Also, I will go in reverse order. So, here are the kiddies in their costumes...

I did make Haylee's costume. 100 % by myself. I thought once or 10 times about sending it out to my mom to finish but I didn't. It was hard, well, not difficult in method really, difficult in trying to learn the language of a Simplicity Pattern (simple my eye!) I do much better with tutorials than patterns. No tissue paper either, hate that stuff. Anyway it is sooo not perfect so please don't look too closely but I think it turned out cute. I like the wings the best.

Also...Haylee just floated and danced around the place whenever she put it on, I half expected her to burst out with "I Feel Pretty" even though she didn't. But wearing it made her feel special and
I love that!
Was it worth it? For her, yes!

The Butterfly

Say Happy Halloween!

One more note of interest. We were warned ahead of time (and I'm glad we were) that St. Louis does Trick-or-Treating a little different than most places. The candy handerouters request a joke or riddle before they will give you your candy. Kind of fun.

Here are some of my favorites that I heard:

What do you call a monster who ate your mother?

Gladiator (Glad he ate her)

What's the difference between roast beef and green peas?

You can roast beef but you can't pee green.
(I beg to differ. I knew someone who did just that, once, not roast beef, the other one. Just beware of gummy bears mixed with bubblegum ice cream.)

Another one I thought would be really funny but the kid's mother stopped him ("I SAID to keep it CLEAN!") before he got to the punch line explaining to me that "it's not my fault, he has older brothers." I wanted to ask her whose fault it was that he had older brothers but I thought better of that idea.

Happy 3 Days after Halloween!!!


It is a train.

I know that because she "chugged" her arm up and down while going "whoo wooo" when I asked her what she was doing.

Also, if you notice our shiny our floor is in the first picture it is not because I just waxed it (heck, I barely get a chance to swiffer it before another episode like this takes place) but I might as well have. It is PAM. I caught her at the end of the act and she was spraying it all over... much the same way I do with Febreze (and I do use A LOT of Febreze around here so she knows how to do it) ...only, it was PAM,
not Febreze.

Just a note, many of you may assume that I just left the PAM out, like on the floor or something in plain reach.
I didn't.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Grandma Time x 2

Yet another plethora of pictures to make you wish you could come and visit the Edwards fam in St. Louie. Seriously. If you visit, we will see that you are entertained.

BJ's mom Marianne and our nephew Tyson came out for a week. I think Tyson was a little upset that he didn't get to visit us while we lived in NC so we could take him to the beach (as we did with Kirsten, Josh, Hope, and Sami) but I think we did a pretty good job coming up with alternative activities. (Let me just note that as we froze our hineys off while doing all these alternate activities, we may have thought once or twice how nice it would to be boogie boarding instead but nevermind. We had fun.)

stop 1
Meremac Caverns, the official hideout (it is a proven fact) of Jesse James et. al and hiding place of his booty (and all the stuff he stole)
This was very cool, unlike some of the other caves we had seen. Dark and moist and a little difficult to walk around in with a wiggly kid in your backpack at times but some of the formations were really spectacular (that's a fancy word for really neat).

This right here (above) is a ginormous mound of pure onyx.

stop 2
We went to the arch again but this time we went all the way up.

Whoa, who took that cool picture???

(so Ty could say he touched the Arch, Haylee, as you can see, didn't quite understand why she was doing it too but still wanted to be in the pic)

At the top. Notice the tini tiny windows behind us. Great view of the Cardinals ball park. It just may have been the closest we will get to going inside.

stop 3
Not a stop really, this was more like a visit. We revisited Eckerts Farm (where we picked our apples) only this time, our purpose was to pick our pumpkins and play around at the carnival-like atmosphere. We all decided to kill a couple birds with one stone and got another bunch of apples on the way out to the pumpkin patch. It wasn't hard to carry both the apples and the pumpkins all over the place and chase after our runaway 2 year old...just in case you were wondering.

Tyson chose a smaller pumpkin so it would fit in his backpack to take back home to Utah.

One cannot walk by one of these insert-your-head-here thingies without taking a picture. It took a couple tries but Ty finally got the expression right.

Lastly, I must tip my hat off to Tyson. He was quite the trooper to put up with the 2 girls (as he had to sit in between them in the back seat whenever we were in the car) and their poking and squealing and such. Also, I had heard he was a pretty picky eater but he tried, and ate everything I made him. (He did alter the seasonings of each with his own garlic salt but that's ok, I wasn't offended in the least.) He is a very fun kid to be around and definitely made the week more enjoyable. Marianne did too. (But that's a given, Grandmas always have fun, I just didn't want to leave anyone out. :) I regret to say that there are some pictures I cannot post of Ty and the girls but I don't have them. Even if I did he probably would never talk to me again if I did.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Oops, let me add a note here to say that I do not have the kind of news you all are thinking...I just thought it was funny.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Just Goin' For a Jog

Cute combo, don't ya think?

At least she was warm.

And pleased that I let her wear what she wanted.

Monday, October 5, 2009

It's Such a Good Feeling... know you're alive.
It's such a happy feeling: You're growing inside.
And when you wake up ready to say,
"I think I'll make a snappy new day."

Jog some memories anyone?

Today while Haylee and I were folding laundry and thumbing through the channels, we happened upon Mr. Rogers! I had no idea it was still on air! I made Haylee watch it with me even though she wasn't excited about it at first since it most definitely did not look like her tv. It took a minute or two. But when Mr. McFeely narrated a video of how to make construction paper, she was hooked.

We were reacquainted with King Friday and Prince Tuesday and Lady Aberlin and Lady Elaine (the one with the big red nose and funny voice) and oh, what a wonderful time I had reminiscing of my own days with Mr. Rogers. He has such a calming way about him. If only we could get some other classics like Today's Special or Pinwheel back on the air...even so, I set the Tivo up to tape it for the rest of the week. Call me pathetic I know but it beats the heck out of Spongebob does it not?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Grandma Time!!!

My (Julie's) mom came out to visit a couple weeks ago and while we enjoyed every minute of her stay (the girls especially) the highlight had to be our apple picking adventure! We took a wonderfully bumpy hayride out to the fields and got to shine the apples on our pants and test them out, right fresh from the tree. Cambree probably "tested" 8 or 9. So fun.

I remember picking apples (not so) long ago when my family was in MI and just how fun it was. When I heard that there are orchards around here to pick your own I put it on our to-do list immediately. Not that I remember much from my childhood picking days, but I picture apple picking to be very romantic. Why? Because I can't think of apple picking without picturing the scene from Anne right at the end when she and Catherine (with a "c") are picking apples (you know, right before the diamond sunbursts and marble halls on the bridge scene?) and Anne says she wants to make sure Marilla has 2 full bushels....we didn't get that much but we did a bunch.

Sorry, I digress. This post was supposed to be about my mom's visit. I just realized that I don't have any pictures of her at all from when she was here...probably because she took all the pictures. Sorry. She really was here though. Besides apple picking, we had a picnic at the park and found my local fabric store and played lots in the backyard and played adult games at night (oops, what I really mean is nonkid games...meaning that we didn't play Zingo or Memory after the kiddies were in bed). Oh, and she rented a car so we had wheels to go places during the day! It was wonderful! We are already, literally, counting down till Turkey Day when we shall see Grandma Jan again, only this time she gets to bring Grandpa along too. YEAH!!!

Fearless this one...she wanted to make her Uncle Twinkae proud rock climbing at 2!

We also took my mom to what has become one of my favorite places here in St. Louis. The Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery. If you've been to the one in Arlington, it's pretty similar. It is enormous! I think it is the 2nd largest national cemetery in the country. Acres upon acres of perfectly positioned, evenly spaced headstones dating way back. If you come visit, we'll take you too.