Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Holiday Card '09 & New Year's "They're Going To Happens"

with edits=)

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year friends and fam!! We hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

Holiday Card '09
We LOVE receiving picture holiday cards and letters from friends (and Hubby's Aunt and Uncle) every year. It is so much fun to read a summary of their year and see pics of their fam. And so wonderful to see and hear more about friends who live far away now, who we don't get to see often enough!

I We procrastinate because when we're almost ready, some'em ain't right, outfits, skin like one of us is 16... are so thoughtful that we I always usually (we've only been doing it for a few years) send our cards and letters out a little late because we know how fun it is to receive them, we spread 'em out for our fam and friends. ;-)

Holiday Card '09

We used Shutterfly annnnd because we picked them up at Target we saved over $.20/card from the Shutterfly site! I liked some of their other pretty backgrounds but I loved the labels on our card for this year. We also sent out a letter talking about all of our big happenings this year, what the little ones are doing, what Hubby and I have been up to, and what we are looking forward to doing next year. Here's our card from this year=) And thank you to some of my twitter friends for picking this one over the other one I showed you! This was the one I chose too=)!

New Year's
Did NY's sneak up on anyone else?? It completely snuck up on me! What are you guys doing? So I haven't really been one to do New Year's Resolutions, because I was always told why make them because so many people don't actually follow through. But this year I'm doing it. I'm making some resolutions. Because really, they are things to strive for. So here we go, New Year's "They're Going To Happens" because they need to happen people!

[1] Stop letting what other people think get to me so much. I just waste too much energy and emotions worrying about what other people think. I run scenarios through my head waaaay too much, over and over, how should I say something, did I say something wrong, did I offend someone. I mean I will always be sensitive and think about those things, and continue being empathetic, but I can also be a little um lot healtier about it too=). If someone doesn't think I'm "cool" enough to be friends with, I'm not going to change who I am. I love to smile, be happy, and real, have fun w/ friends, (and be close to family), and want to keep that up!

[2] Lose these last 11-12 lbs! Oh boy=)

[3] Spend more time in God's word. Quiet time. Reading. Studying. It's a must for me!

[4] Get more involved in our new church (the church near our new house) like we were in our previous ones (and we're still going up there for some playgroups, MOPS, and gettogethers w/ friends=)). Make new friends around our new house. It's been a little tough after moving and having our sweet second baby, for various, some frustrating (not bc of any of my boys!), reasons. So I'm going to get over those frustrations and get out there and continue to meet new friends (we've already met some great ones) and keep in touch with old friends! Friends are so important and we love our dear friends who are true friends, and no matter how much time has passed, it's like none has passed at all. Those are wonderful friends! We are so excited to continue to grow those friendships even deeper in 2010!!

Happy New Year!!! We wish you an amazing, fulfilling, prosperous, God-driven, full of joy New Year!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Decorations '09

I love decorating! And you girls have been so inspiring with all of your beautiful decorations each season! There have been several years that we haven't really been able to decorate too much because we were moving or packing or unpacking (do you notice a trend here=)), so I was so excited to decorate this year.

This is our first "real" fake tree! When we were first married a co-worker passed her old little artificial down to us and after many years it was time to say goodbye to our first little tree.

So this is a 7.5 foot prelit tree [I got it for 65% off plus an additional 15% off, couldn't pass it up!]. Most of the ornaments are gold, silver, and red. Some sparkly, some velvety, some shiny, some matte. There are a few ornaments that we've bought or been given by my Mom too. Remember this Jewish [believing in Jesus girl] just started celebrating Christmas when I met ma Hubs so I'm still working up our decoration collection.

A few faves. Love the sparkly snowflakes. Love gingerbread houses - I even bought supplies to make them with my kids when I taught, we had so much fun. And cute little snowmen.

This is the family room=) This is really the first year we've had stockings. These were the cutest ones I found for a good price and we all like snowmen, they're just cute and fun. And I bought six of them!... because we are hoping to have four little ones=)... they all had to match! And we love our lone big nutcracker and hope to add more to our collection of one in the future=)!

There are a few more here and there and lots of yummy smelling candles everywhere but I'll show you those in another post=)

If I don't get a chance to say on the day, Merry Christmas friends!! I hope you have a wonderful holiday and lots of time to relax with family and friends! And I wish you so much JOY!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

What To Do When You Have To Hunker Down

Hello friends from the land of snow! It started snowing around 6pm last night and currently there are over 15 inches of snow on the ground! (this pic was around 14 1/2 in=)) ETA: they're calling for over 20 inches!

What to do when you have to hunker down! And you know you won't be leaving your home for at least two days.

Shop! Go out as early as you can after you are sure they are actually pretty certain you are going to get over 1/8 of an inch of snow and get milk, eggs, fruit, veggies, and any ingredients you'll need to make yummy food and treats, cold weather supplies, etc. before they sell out... by noon the day before it's supposed to start snowing!

Cook comfort food: Chili! It's never the same every time, but it always contains ground beef (or turkey), red or pink or both kidney beans, canned diced tomatos, a little tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and most of the time a little crushed or ground red pepper. [This is what I cooked for our first (little) snow a couple weeks ago]

Corn Bread
Served with: sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, diced onions, and lots of butter for the corn bread!
Pumpkin Pie (w/ homemade crust): made the next day because I was too tired that night=) Our cute little BooBoo was a little handful that night and tuckered us out=)
Get bundled up [from this morning]
ETA: And when the little ones are in bed make homemade hot chocolate with Peppermint Schnapps! =)We were supposed to have a really fun last day of Hanukkah party today but we had to cancel it due to the feet of snow. We had almost 30 people coming! We're hoping to reschedule the partay for the end of January. So that means we will be eating tons of sugar cookies topped with buttercream frosting. I will definitely be sharing the recipe! I hadn't baked all the cakes yet, just in case! Good thing! I'll do a what you missed at the party post soon=). But I cut it down and just made one batch of Spinach and Artichoke Dip, love love. So yummy. I'll share that one too.

I hope you're having a great weekend so far! What's the weather like where you live??

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Look Who's 5 Months Old!


This sweet little guy is 5 months old. We can't believe it! He is such a sweet boy. Here's what he's up to:

[1] Loves to smile, giggle, and laugh. Tickling, making goofy faces or sounds, playing "up and down", making him dance =), and seeing Daddy (Mommy and BabyBoy too) just walk towards him =) all make that sweet little giggle happen.
[2] Can sit for a little bit by himself. And has been responding to his name for a long time now.
[3] Reaches for, grabs, and plays with toys.
[4] He's a roller. He mostly rolls from his back to his tummy!
[5] He says dada! I even got the first time a couple weeks ago on video=)
[6] He gibbergabbers and talks like crazy. We LOVE it. He kicks it up a notch especially when there are a lot of people around. It is so cute. Looks like we have another little performer=) And he has quite the conversations with the couch pillows!
[7] One of his favorite things to do is stand up, and has been pretty much since he came home. He's a little powerhouse.
[8] He sleeps from about 7:30pm until 7:30am. There are times he'll wake up and we'll either go in, comfort him and he goes back to sleep, or if he's having a little spurt, I'll feed him and put him back down until it's time to start the morning. =)
[9] He is teething like crazy. The only way he's showing that is by sticking as many fingers in his mouth as possible to gnaw on, or very few times some fussing. Note the "Teeth Much" pic in his excersaucer below. =)
[10] He loves when BabyBoy talks to him, sings to him, hands him a toy and says here ya go Next Edition you can play with this, tells him all the happenings of his day, or says, "It's ok NE" if he cries. He adores his big bro.

And we adore him. He is such a good boy. He is such a gift from above. Oh my goodness we love this little baby! It brings a tear to my eye and butterflies in the pit of stomach when I think about how amazing he is and how thankful to God we are for him.


Happy 5 months to our love!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Party Attire!

Hubby's work Christmas Party attire that is. Let's begin.

Hubby: "What are you going to wear to the party?" he innocently asked

Me: tilted head, dejected tone "I have no idea..."

Hubby: knowing what a crazy process I make the 'what to wear' decision =) "Don't involve me this time" he said smiling

Me: "uuh" said like "How rude" from the Olson twins from Full House (what up Megan=))

Hubby: knowing I would probably stand in our closet for the next three days straight saying I have nothing to wear "if we find a sitter, you can buy a new not too expensive dress."

Me: smile and the mind starts racing

So I went to the outlets yesterday and no. luck. I inadvertantly tried on a dress for $959.?? Yeah, move the decimal over to the left, I thought it was that plus 50% off! Annd it was the one that I would have gotten. I mean it was originally $3000. ha.

I did not get it.

I'd never been to Off Saks 5th Ave before but Hubby's cousin said she's found cute things for great deals so thought I'd check it out.

So as I tweeted, Suggestions are welcome! (exact dresses, stores, anything really, bring it) Spanx are a given :).

And I might need a cute new pair of heels too. =) Maybe with a bow or flowery "thing" on it, or a cute peeptoe. Loving the peeptoes, bows, and flowery thing on heels. It's been forever since I've purchased a new pair of heels. My cousin is getting married next summer, I can wear them there too, =) our photos, I'll wear them to the grocery store if I must, the possibilities are endless.

Oh and the party is this Saturday, so we need to act fast. I've been sick and feeling terrible since yesterday early evening, so shopping didn't happen today. I've pretty much been in bed all. day. Uh oh. Need a cute dress girls!

And again I say, I am so sorry for being so behind... I have 525 unread posts in my google reader... why is that so stressful? Thank you for sticking with me, you are so sweet, and I appreciate every comment, seriously, makes that big ole goofy smile appear on ma face, every time.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Guilty -{Yummy}- Pleasures

The following items are really getting in the way of my weight loss.

Breyers Loaded Waffle Cone Ice Cream - didn't know if I would like it at first, had it at Aunt's Dottie's house, ummmm, go get some. And eat responsibly.


Homemade Hot Chocolate with a dash (or more ;-)) of Peppermint Schnapps, a dollop of Cool Whip, and sprinkled with cocoa powder. Need I say more?

[ok, not the best shot, but don't judge a picture by it's... picture. it was yuuuummy! and made w/guilty pleasure below.]

Ghirardelli Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips - makes for a yummy snack. My Aunt Dottie sent us home from AZ with a 5 lb bag because she knew that we/I would use them, bake with them, or eat them by the handfulls. Do these count as good for you dark chocolate? =) Not high enough in cocoa %? Ok, don't tell me if the answer is no. Half way done Aunt Dottie!


One month no poundage lost to maybe a pound. But I can't stop. Love sweets. And food. We've been trying not to keep too many sweets in the house, but if nothing is packaged then I have to bake! The answer... I need to work out more so I can maintain my sweet and ... food tooth. We just joined the gym (no initiation fee and one month free, yay) and I've gone a couple times... I need to start a routine.

Verdict: Routine's are hard to start.

I know 21 days.

Verdict: 21 days is a long time.

I get more motivated when I see myself in a pic. Where did my toned arms go? And smaller non-preggy looking tummy, and slightly smaller booty and thighs. sigh. That's quick motiviation right there. I'm going to the gym tomorrow!

Just in case you missed 'em, check out my Packing and Moving Tips and see if you are just as crazy office supply organization-exciteable dorks as we are=)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

7 Tips for Packing and Your Move - Updated with GIVEAWAY Winner

We have moved 8 or 9 times (it's all a blur now =)) and we've been married 6 1/2 years (and we're not military=))! We haven't meant to move that much, but they were good reasons...=) Our professional movers certification is in the mail. ha.

Some Packing Tips NCF Style : Make your packing, move, unloading, and unpacking more efficient! With a... Spreadsheet! Who's with me?? haha. Ok, don't leave, it's not that bad, I promise! It's easy! And you're going to want to bury yourself in ice cream the night you move, it may take you a while to unpack, and you need to know what box the ice cream scoop is in.

Did we get ridiculed, laughed at, and made fun of by some of our family and friends, yes. But did we know exactly where everything was without opening one box when we got to our residence... well almost everything... the system is slightly flawed when you get to the end, are packing exhausted, and have to throw random items into random boxes... but almost everything, yes!

[1] Get your mindset ready. You have to pack up your place friend. It's gonna be ok. And even better, you'll know where everything is when you arrive at your new home! Doesn't organization, color-coding, and Sharpie markers and spreadsheets excite you? Ok maybe that's just me, but it's still gonna be ok.

[2] Plastic bins. We have a lot of the big plastic bins as well as boxes, love them. They go on sale everywhere. They're reusable, easily labeled, and they don't harbor spiders!!

[3] The liquor store. You can try to get free b0xes and/or p acking paper off of craigslist. But you can also find great book boxes or for packing the kitchen at ABC stores! You don't have to drink your way through the boxes, although that might help you with [#1], but usually they'll let you take a bunch for free! Most have dividers in them (that are removeabe) that are great for glasses and stemware!

[4] Have your laptop next to you with your excel spreadsheet open. Label across the top: Box #, Room, Color, Contents... (Plastic) Bin #, Room, Color, Contents. And then number down the side.

ETA: For those who get excitement out of color-coding, it makes it even easier, when everyone is helping you unload boxes (just feed them pizza, chips, and soda for their help ;)), to see the color with the room name, to correctly distribute them to the right location annnd you don't have to write in super small script on the label the contents or partial contents of the box. When you look up the number on your spreadsheet, you'll be golden to find the pizza cutter your first night in your new home (since you won't be cooking ;)). Or when searching for that one little item you need, you can just go on your super sweet spreadsheet, click Ctrl F - to find - and search for that one little thing you need.


[5] Get your labels (I used 2x4") and all the Sharpie colors your little heart desires right next to you too. Right up your label when you're done and slap it on! Last time I made two labels per bin/box, one for a front and one for a side so you could see if from a couple places more easily, but this time I only had the patience for one=)

[6] Use towels or linens to line boxes padding when packing up your kitchen or fragiles! Doesn't cost you any moola, doesn't get dirty because everything is wrapped, provides great padding, and you can feel comfortable filling up your box without things getting damaged!!

[7] Take pictures of how you have things organized or placed on the walls if you like it! When you get to your new house and are trying to remember how you had everything placed that you loved so much, all you have to do is look at pic and be reminded!!


It even promotes good teamwork too, while one of you is finishing up and closing the box, read out to your mate or friend the contents, they can type it in, write up the label, and your onto the next box!

If you have any of your own tips do share, and if you're moving soon, good luck and Happy Moving! =)

Update:
The NCF GIVEAWAY WINNER is...

I went to random dot org and the winner is #1! And we never think that #1 wins =) So the lucky winner is...

Kristin from BonBon Rose!
Kristin said... How do I not have a wine decanter. I bought one for scotch but not wine. Craziness! Fabulous giveaway lady! After browsing the stores, I would say I would hit up CSN Home first.

Congrats Kristin! Just email me your information at naturallycaffeinatedfamily {at} yahoo {dot} com and the wonderful folks at CSN Stores will send you your fabulous new wine decanter set! (and if you choose to switch your choice you just let me know too =)) Enjoy and congrats!! =)

...and time got away from me and I kept forgetting to post who won my last giveaway! It was Sarah S., and I'm sure she found lots of great with her T arget G iftcard! Congrats again!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Our "Quick Order These Books" Order (and my GIVEAWAY!)

Underneath this super sweet little face is a strong willed little guy.


Now, we've been working on obedience with a lot of great advice from some fam, great friends, and several books, since he was bitty, before he started walking, and he's been doing really well.

So whenever we tell people who have been around him that he is strong willed they say, BabyBoy?? Nooooo. And we smile and say, BabyBoy?? Yeeeeeessss. =)

We are actually glad that he has a strong will. Crazy? Maybe. But we pray for wisdom from God so we can help him use his strongwilledness for good. =)

The day of Hubby's surprise party, BabyBoy figured out that he could (climb out of his big bed) open his door and come out of his room. Freedoooooom, Fredooooom. [We tried not to teach him and he had been a pretty obedient rule follower until he figured it out himself, then he believed he had new freedoms=)]

So currently he is using his strong will to: open his door and come out of his room before he falls asleep for his nap or bedtime, after he's woken up from his nap... early, or when he has woken up in the morning... very early... waaaaaay very early... like 3:30am early. Yeah. The bitty baby doesn't even get up that early. But I'm glad to say that a couple weeks later, yesterday he came in our room at 7:40am and the past few days after about 7:15am. Yay. We're getting there!

We have dealt with this a couple different ways, we're staying consistent, and staying a united front, me and the Hubs. Oh and part of it is, insert little voice "I need to go potty on the teelet (ok that's how he used to say toilet but it was so cute)"... =)

After going upstairs about 27 times during naptime on Sunday, while Hubby was up there the 28th time, I popped online and quick ordered the following books that have been recommended to us multiple times, that we had been meaning to purchase and read:




I wanted to overnight ship them, actually I wanted to call Amaz0n and see if they'd have someone fly them to us the moment I clicked purchase, but instead of paying an additional waaaay more than we actually paid for the books... I had to go with free super sav er ship ping.

He is such a good sweet boy and overall so obedient, we are also praying for patience, in addition, our little border collie is a little more rambunctious in the house right now, take him out and he obeys even better. He needs his cute little boy self more adventure and new curiosity seeking environments. We go to storytime at the bookstore, playgroups, church/nursery, the park, stores, walks, Hubby plays with him outside everyday. Adventure. =)

So my commenting will be (and has been) a little slim for a bit, and if my posts are incomprehendible or any comments I do leave are completely goofy, please forgive me and don't think that I lack all grammar or syntax skills. This is just another stage. It is, don't tell us otherwise. ;-)

Don't forget to enter my GIVEAWAY to win Rachael Ray Cookware or a Wine Decanter, your choice!!! :-)

Monday, November 30, 2009

Getting Caught Up and GIVEAWAY!!

[1] A couple weeks ago I had a great time at a GNO with these gals. The sweet cute one in the middle moved and got to come back for a visit. We got to visit and stay with her (her Hubby and three little ones) when we drove across the country! We had such a great time=)

[2] Don't forget to enter my GIVEAWAY!!! You could win Rachael Ray Cookware or a gorgeous Wine Decanter! You have three ways to win! Hurry on over friends!

[3] Several weeks ago we went to a fantastic farm/pumpkin patch! They had slides galore, a super fun hayride, animals to see and or pet, live music, and you got to pick your pumpkins on your way out. [I'll post more pics in another post=)]


[4]
I am so excited! We (finally ;-)) got our new camera, the Canon Rebel T1i! I had been wanting a DSLR for so long. We got a good deal and I can't stop saying, I LOVE this camera, how incredible is this camera. And Hubby is waaay more impressed with it than he thought he'd be! I keep hitting love tapping him saying seeee! I told you it would be awesome!

The one thing I'm not caught up on is your blogs!! Soon =) I hope you have a fabulous day friends!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Going Old School Thanksgiving - The It Started Everything Edition

It was November 25th, 1999. It was the end of the night. We were at my Mom's house... just hanging out like pretty well behaved college students.

We probably enjoyed Thanksgiving with my soon to be boyfriend, Hubby to come's family. I can't remember now because this is what I do remember...

We were standing in my Mom's living room, by the fireplace. I can't remember if it was burning or not. I can only remember standing in front of him, holding hands, looking, yes, into each other's eyes. =) We were starting to say our, don't want to but have to say goodbyes for the night.

Then we had the conversation. The I think we're dating/courting but it's not completely clear conversation. Neither of us were interested in anyone else. We were spending all of our free time together. Hanging out in college. Campus Crusade. Playing sports, watching tv and movies, going rollerblading at 2 in the morning (ok, that was only once, we were so young, maybe story to come). And we knew we wanted to take it to the next level. Courting meant that if we agree to this, then we know we are moving forward with the intent of marriage. If we found out later it wasn't right, then ok, but for now, noone else was in sight.

It might have been me that prompted that conversation. =) Hubby was so sweet and going with the flow and didn't want to do anything at the wrong time. It had been months of hangin' by this time and we knew there was something going on.

I had butterflies when his sweatpant wearing chill self walked into a room. And I found out later that on our first date, him teaching me how to play tennis, that he wasn't just watching the ball when I had to chase it across the court (and ... pick one up either =) blushing...).

So I might have said, in a fun sweet I'm hoping so tone, "so what's going on here, are we dating?" =)

That was 10 years ago!

I am so incredibly thankful for my amazing Husband, I cannot even begin to find the words to explain how much. We have grown so much together. He's made me stronger, he's become a phenomenal man and leader of our family, he's been encouraging me and working on my confidence for 10 years, he's become more detail oriented and more up for anything... we balance each other in so many wonderful ways.

I am thankful for so many things...

...including God's never ceasing provision and undeserved blessings, our gifts from God healthy amazing changed our lives in the best possible way babies; my Mom, who gave me away at our wedding, who I talk to on the phone all the time, about pretty much everything, even when either of us buys a new piece of clothing that we're excited about =), and yes we can get annoyed but we get over it; our families; and true friends...

...and not to take away from anyone or anything else, I am the most thankful for my husband. There are too many reasons to even begin to list (I've tried, that's why my posts about him are so long and there's always more=)). Next to God, he is my absolute rock. I do not know what I would do without him.

{pic from just after we were married in 2003 =)}

Happy Thanksgiving friends!!! I hope you have a wonderful holiday and feast =) with your families or friends! Hope you enjoyed my trip down memory lane!


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