Friday, December 30, 2011

Catch up.

As you can see, I sort of lost all motivation for posting on Christmas. We had a wonderful time with my family and Judah definitely loved opening presents. Pictures to come soon.

For now, though, I'm back at work and still a bit under the weather. This cold I just had was a doozy.

I did lots of homemade gifts again this year, although I didn't manage to photograph what I did. Here are some of the links I used:

1. Casserole Carrier
2. Rocket Ship
3. homemade vanilla
4. Bird's nest necklace

And I got this awesome homemade menu board made with chalkboard paint from my brother and SIL. I love it and can't wait to use it.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

December 24

Well, I didn't get this posted last night in between the church service and some last minute pajama sewing. To me, though, this is what Christmas is about- celebrating the light who came into the world.

"For the people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined."

-Isaiah 9:2

Friday, December 23, 2011

December 23

Jeff, Judah, and Ian

Thursday, December 22, 2011

December 22

Finally on vacation!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

December 21

After dinner playtime. you can tell it's after dinner because he has yogurt on his shirt.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

December 20

Baking night!

Monday, December 19, 2011

December 19

Busy work week + a miserable head cold = not taking many photos. I was wondering around the house tonight trying to find something to photograph. What you get is one of my more favorite Christmas decorations - candy cane ornaments inside a glass jar. Here's hoping this head cold goes away before vacation starts.

More dpp here.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

December 18

Christmas part 1

We opened presents with Jeff's parents last night. Judah was very, very excited about his new car.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

December 17

South Carolina in winter. No snow, but we do have nice camellias. Not exactly a fair trade, but nice nonetheless.

Friday, December 16, 2011

December 16

 Yes, I took these yesterday, but since I worked all day today, I had to post them. The zoo was a blast!
Judah especially loved the giraffes.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

December 15

Sadly, the battery and power cord died on our laptop so I can't access all the great photos I took at the zoo today. Jeff's parents are in town and we had a wonderful time at the zoo. Now we are enjoying a rousing game of scrabble, a common activity when they visit. Hopefully we can get back to better photos tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

December 14

We've been nursing a sick boy today and this morning I had to take a renewal CPR class. Thus the resorting to an instagram photo. But I do love how festive it looks.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

December 13

Ever since I first found out that my dear Aunt Lynn had lung cancer, I wanted to grow my hair out to donate. Today I finally, finally cut it all off. Although it might be a little bit shorter than initially anticipated, it does feel great to have done this. Aunt Lynn fought cancer bravely for as long as she could, and then let Jesus do the final healing. We still miss her.

Earlier this year, a very dear family friend was also diagnosed with breast cancer. She, too, has been fighting hard and so this is also for her.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Lip balm tutorial.

So I've been wanting to make homemade lip balm for at least a year ever since I first saw this recipe in a Martha Stewart magazine. Last year I couldn't find any beeswax locally and could only get it after Christmas when I finally made it into a craft store. Then every time I thought about making it, I could never find any appropriate containers. Since a quick internet search solved that problem, I decided this was finally the year when I'd make a bunch of lip balm to give away as a gift. I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was and so thought I'd do a little photo tutorial in case anyone else out there wants to make some this year.

1. Ingredients: beeswax, carrier oil (I used a combo of sunflower and almond), and essential oil in the scent of your choosing. (These can be purchased fairly inexpensively at a grocery store like Whole Foods if you are lucky enough to live near one, or a GNC which is where I went since my town doesn't have Whole Foods. Sigh.) I found a block of beeswax on sale a while ago, but the pellets would work better if you can find them.
(before it's melted)

2. Combine 2 TBSP. of carrier oil for every 1 TBSP of beeswax in a jar sitting in a pan of boiling water or over a double boiler. I used a big glass bowl which allowed the wax to melt well, but was fairly annoying to clean up afterward. Let all the wax melt. You know it's all melted when the wax is completely clear and liquid. According to the website, this should make enough for 2 0.5-oz.-tins, so I usually at least tripled it since I was making such a big quantity.
(after it's melted)

(the final color I had)
3. Remove from heat and add a few shavings from an old lipstick if you want it to be slightly tinted. When the lip balm sets, it will be a much lighter color than it looks now, so add more than you think you need. This is also the time to add the essential oil. The recipe says to add the oil one drop at a time, but at least for the scents I was using (orange and grapefruit) it took a LOT to make it have any noticeable scent. I added probably at least a tsp. each time to about 4 TBSP of beeswax, and the lip balms still weren't that strongly scented. I also tried to add some vanilla extract, but FYI - vanilla contains mostly water and alcohol, both of which are immiscible in oil. Oops. Apparently I forgot that bit of basic chemistry momentarily. You can use vanilla bean, though.

4. Using a cheap turkey baster, suck up some of the liquid and pipe it into the container of your choice. Allow to sit for at least 20 minutes, then you are ready to go.
Finished product. Doesn't it look great?

December 12

Office play time.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

December 11 - Christmas party!

LSPC had the annual Christmas party at our house tonight. I think the pics speak for themselves! For previous parties - check out this. and this.

For the rest of the DPP, head here.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

December 10 - the outtake

My SIL and I did a little photo shoot of all the kids to use in not so secret Christmas project. Here is my favorite outtake, of my goofball of a nephew, Caleb.

Friday, December 09, 2011

December 9

The women's bible study I take part in goes, every Christmas, to visit a local residential facility for recovering addicts. Last year, my first year in the Bible study, I had to work the day they went and so was unable to go. I am so thankful I made it this year. We sang some songs and shared a bit with them about the powerful God we serve. Then they got up and shared about how God has been changing them. It was incredibly moving - sometimes in my somewhat sheltered life, I forget how powerful God is. And that he came to set the prisoner free. A good thing to be reminded of this advent season.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

December 8 - baby shower

 Tonight I had the pleasure of attending a baby shower for a fellow resident and friend. (Isn't she lovely?)
We had a wonderful time talking, eating, and playing my personal favorite baby shower "game" - the "decorate a onesie" game. No melted candy bars involved. :)

On my way over to the shower, I was thinking about a blog post I once read (and I can't remember where, or I'd link to it) that was talking about how to deal with infertility in the church. I remember there was lots of good advice, but it all basically boiled down to "weep with those weep, and rejoice with those who rejoice." Which certainly sounded like good advice. It is easy to become bitter and upset when other people get the good news you've been waiting and hoping to hear, and it is always good to be reminded that the Bible calls us to something better. I would add, though, that the way that we rejoice with our rejoicing friends in the midst of heartache may not necessarily mean attending every last baby shower we are invited to. For a long time while I was struggling with infertility I felt the need to attend every shower there was, but I quickly realized that I could rejoice with a happier heart by sometimes skipping the shower and sending along a gift when the baby was born. I learned my limits and realized that while the Bible does command us to be joyful and not bitter, it doesn't say that we have to accept every invitation that comes our way.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

December 7

We (finally!) got our tree up yesterday. I had been feeling rather bah-humbug this Christmas season because we had no decorations up yet, so I was so excited to get our tree up and decorated yesterday. I had this whole plan that we were going to make hot cocoa and listen to Christmas music and get our house decked out. Then I got called into the hospital to deliver a baby. This sweet girl was having her first baby, and since the last delivery I got called in to do, I actually missed, I was feeling a bit over zealous and went to the hospital well before I was really needed. She ended up having the baby around 9:30 or so and I was very bummed that we were going to have to postpone decorating for another day since I didn't get home until after 10.

But I have an awesome husband who was totally game to do our decorating late! I still made hot cocoa, we turned on some Christmas pandora, and got the tree decorated and some stockings hung. We definitely still have some halls to deck, but I'm feeling much more "Joy to the World" now. It also helped that I spent much of today working on some homemade Christmas gifts.

Since we did the tree after Judah went to bed, he was so excited to explore it this morning. It was adorable how excited he was about all the ornaments. He just back and forth around the front of the tree touching all the low-hanging ornaments.

And this isn't that great of a photo, but here is Judah's "busted" face - the one he uses when I've caught him doing something he knows he isn't supposed to be doing. In this case, touching the glass ball ornaments. I do love that I got it on film.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

December 6

What can I say?

I have a really cute kid.
For more photo fun, check out this.