Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Million Dollar Smile

Mom, I need to talk to you about something.

I'm a little confused and I need some answers.


Why is this hairy thing with the cold wet nose
always sniffing me?

And why are you making all those funny faces and noises at me?

Are you trying to get me to show my dimples?

Okay.  I will.

I know how much you love my smile.

Annual Deer Hunting Trip

Every year in early December we head to my sister Lisa's house.  Travis hunts and the kids and I hang out with Aunt Lisa and all the cousins.  It is such a fun time and something we look forward to each year.  Travis really enjoys hunting and loves being out in nature.  I love hanging out with my sister and nieces and nephews.  It's a win-win situation.

My brother-in-law Chris and nephew Christian with his buck.

Travis and Christian

Papa and his girls.

Aunt Lisa snuggling Thomas
This year Travis got an 8 point buck on the first morning out hunting.  He was very excited!  He is having it mounted so if you would like to come meet Bambi, you can.  (The deer was supposed to go in his studio but now we aren't sure if it can be out there.  So we are negotiating where it will hang in our house.  I"m trying to compromise, people!  Wish me luck!)

He also got a big doe when he went hunting with his mom's neighbor back in Milo.  (I don't have any pictures of that one yet.) 

The girls love venison and can't wait for deer steaks.  They can have my portion.

And Papa can't wait to take his girls and Thomas hunting one day.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Family Traditions

A few years ago I learned that decorating the Christmas tree as a family is WAY more fun if I set up the tree and put lights and bead garland on by myself.  I usually do this part a day or at least a night in advance.  This way our tree decorating traditions don't include mommy swearing and being in a bad mood. (Papa used to do this job but was forced to resign.)

We turn on Christmas music and I dig out my blinking light bulb necklace.  (Because that's normal, right?  Wearing blinking jewelry?) 

Papa is in charge of the ornaments and doles them out to very excited girls.  We all wear Santa hats and clap when Papa puts the star on top.  We got the star light on our honeymoon and the girls never tire of hearing the story of how we found it.

Once we are finished, we admire our work and then break out the hot chocolate and candy canes. 

Next year our littlest helper will be 14 months old, and surely considerably busier than snuggling with me this year.  I can't wait for him to join in.

In order to ensure minimal swearing while decorating next year, I donated our Christmas tree when I took it down this year.  That way I will be forced to get a pre-lit tree.  Smart thinking I hope!

Although the tree is down and the decorations packed away, the memories we made are here to stay.

(Wow.  I am really amping up the cheesiness for 2012.)

This year we started a new tradition, a gingerbread house.  Grandma Marker (Trav's mom) gave us the pan last year and we put it to good use. 

More later,