Sunday, December 30, 2007

Priceless Christmas gift

There are only two times in my adult life that I have been truly surprised.  The first was when Brian flew my best friend, Pam here for my birthday, and she showed up in the meeting room of my office in Tampa (everyone in the meeting apparently knew what was going to happen, too!!).

The second time happened this Christmas when I opened the gift from my mom.  My gift from her this year is something that brought tears to my eyes, and took my breath away in an instant.  On a gold chain are the wedding band and engagement rings that belonged to my grandmother AND great-grandmother.  She had both sets completely restored, cleaned, and the prongs reset (to insure that the diamonds don't come loose after all this time), and passed them on to me.  I have very few family heirlooms, so things like this hold a lot of meaning to me, and I could not contain myself when I opened this, and realized what I was holding.  I still get emotional every time I see them.  

The picture just doesn't do them justice, but truthfully it wouldn't matter what they looked like.  Knowing who they belonged to, and where they came from holds the meaning to me.  I have to say that this was one very special Christmas for me.

Thank you mom.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Disney with Erin

Erin and I spent the day at Magic Kingdom today.  It was the perfect ending to our week alone together.  This week with my girl has been priceless.  We have spent time shopping, eating out, playing outside on the swing set (and in the hose), lounging around on the couch watching tv (which I NEVER get the chance to do any more), eating ice cream, and just having fun together.  I had no idea how much I would enjoy this one on one time with her.  She is an absolute blessing, and just a true pleasure to spend time with.  

Friday, December 28, 2007


This is what Brian was doing today:

And then see the next post down to see what the weather is like here.  Erin has been playing in her bathing suit in the back yard on her swing set, and in the hose for the past two days.  It was 85 degrees today.  I think Brian said that it was in the 20's or low 30's there in Milwaukee today.  Ouch!  His body is going to go into shock when he returns to the 80 degree weather on Monday.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Watering Daddy's plants

This afternoon Erin decided that she needed to water the bushes along the back of the lanai (from the inside of the lanai!!).  When I asked her why, she said that since daddy isn't here to turn the sprinklers on she needed to take care of the bushes for him.  

Christmas pictures (just a couple)

The first is of Erin just after she fell asleep on Christmas eve, and the second is of her with her dollhouse just after she saw it on Christmas morning.


Round one is over, and it's been a blast.  Erin and I spent Christmas eve, Christmas day, and the day after with Grandma B.  Santa brought Erin her giant dollhouse with the elevator, and her purple iPod shuffle as well as many other goodies.  She was so excited to see the dollhouse (it is taller than she is) standing there by the tree on Christmas morning, and she is so excited to have her own iPod, and not to have to beg to listen to Sean and Brendan's any more.  She also got an itunes gift card so that she can download some of her favorite songs.  We'll be doing that later today.

The boys called, and they got their new four wheelers (they each got their own) from their dad and Martha, as well as Guitar Hero 3 (for the Xbox 360), and other individual things for each of them.  They still have Christmas to celebrate here at home when they get here on Monday, and I can't say what they will be getting because I know that Sean checks the blog!  I can say that they are going to be VERY happy though.  I'll also be getting my Christmas present from Brian when he gets home on Monday, and Erin has more presents from Santa when her daddy gets here, too!!  So Christmas is far from over for us.

I've got a few pictures of Erin to download from Christmas morning, and I'll get that done later today.  We just returned home last night, and I've still got to get unpacked.  I'll be taking more pictures of her playing with her new gifts throughout the week, too.  Once the boys get home I'll be sure to post some pictures of them opening their gifts, too.  

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Happy birthday Jacob

"Little footprints, how softly you tiptoed into my world. Almost silently, only a moment you stayed, but what an imprint your footsteps have left upon my heart." Dorothy Ferguson

Erin's Christmas show

Erin had her Christmas show on Saturday, December 15th.  She was so excited leading up to the day, but it was a different story once it was time to go on stage.  She got so nervous, and she wasn't at all happy about all of the people (about 200) looking up towards the stage.  She was crying, but she still wanted to participate.  I sat in the first row, and once she got up there, saw me, and started singing her songs she got a huge smile on her face, started giggling, and everything was ok.  She did great.  She had a leading role as Milton the mouse during one of the songs (that's why she's dressed as a mouse), and she was perfect.  Her signing during Silent Night and Let There Be Peace On Earth was flawless.
The pictures aren't great (the microphone was in my way most of the time), but here are a few. 

Monday, December 10, 2007

It's going to be a busy week

My last two finals of the semester are this week, and then I have a break for a month!  On Friday I have a mandatory company meeting, followed by a semi-party (the meeting is being held at a local movie house that shows current movies and serves dinner/drinks).  Following the meeting we are being treated to a viewing of "I Am Legend", dinner and drinks on Actsoft.  On Saturday we have Erin's annual Christmas show (she has the lead role), and then that evening is the Actsoft Christmas party.  Then on Sunday we are headed to Deltona so that I can take family pictures for Aunt Diana and Aunt Linda.  They have requested pictures of their families with Nana.  So it's going to be a busy week, but lots of fun stuff, family, and a wrap to an interesting semester of school.

We've also had a drastic change of plans for Christmas since Larry decided to have the boys for Christmas this year.  It'll be a lot of fun for them, and we'll just have to wait to do NYC next year.  So the boys fly to Atlanta on the 22nd, and come home on the 31st, just in time to celebrate New Year's Eve at home with me.  We'll celebrate our Christmas that morning when they get home, too.  Brian is still going to Milwaukee for Christmas, but Erin is staying here with me so that I'm not alone for Christmas.  He leaves on the 21st and will come back the same day as the boys (31st).  So it'll just be the two girls!!!!  She and I will spend Christmas Eve and day with Grandma B in Jacksonville, and the following day we'll head to Orlando for a Disney treat just for the two of us.  I'm sure we'll have a lot of fun together. 

Now I just need to get my butt in gear and start my Christmas shopping!!!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Anah Belle

Getting Anah was such a great decision.  She has turned out to be a wonderful dog, and has fit so well into our family.  We are lucky to have found her when we did, because she has brought a lot of joy into our lives.

Monday, December 03, 2007

My girl

Erin and Santa

This was taken while she was waiting in line to see Santa

She was describing the doll house to him here.  

She RAN to him, hugged him for a long time, and then made her wish for the one and only thing that she wants.  No long list for this little girl.  It was so sweet.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thanksgiving and football!

It's been a busy week.  We spent Thanksgiving with Grandma B in Jacksonville, had a wonderful time with her, ate a lot of great food, and just enjoyed spending time with her.  On Friday we went to the annual tree lighting at the Jacksonville Landing.  We go every year, and the kids love it.  I didn't take my camera, but I did get a before and after picture with my phone so I'll try to get those posted later today.

On Sunday we went to the Jaguars game with the tickets from my cousin Liz.  Talk about a surprise.  We were on the first row, Club seats, directly behind the Buffalo Bills bench (see the pictures).  Brendan was in awe when we walked out of the door and he realized that we were right on the field.  It was a great game, and the Jags won 36-14.

Thanks again, Liz.  We had a blast!

Friday, November 16, 2007


Isn't this a perfect shot of the two girls?

The nine-seater bike that we rented down at the St. Pete Pier

I couldn't resist.  Ivee looked so pretty, and she was willing to "model" for me, so I took advantage of the situation and got these beautiful shots as a result.