Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Eve 2008






This Christmas Eve was magical, to say the least. We had over 30 people in our house! It was wonderful. My mom cooked most of the day and we had a traditional Mexican Noche Buena with tamales, pozole, frijoles charros, rice and many other good foods! We also got a pinata for the kids to break outside. Good fun was had by all. At the end of the evening, the missionaries made their Christmas presentation and read some scriptures. It is very important to my family to remember Christ at this time of year, as I am sure it is in yours. Because of the economy my husband and I decided that our kids would each only get three small gifts for Christmas. For each other, we got things that we really needed, like a new set of Pj's for me, a new belt and new gloves. Sergio got some new Old Navy T-shirts! What a simple guy :) For the kids' stocking stuffers I decided to start a new tradition-magic memory boxes! I bought some inexpensive boxes at Michael's and decoupaged them with each of our kids' favorite characters.Prior to the big day, each of the kids wrote down on a card "what I love most about (insert sibling/parent's name here). They then put it in each person's respective stocking for reading on Christmas morning. My eyes filled with tears as each child took turns reading out loud what someone had written about him/her. Each note was placed in their magic memory box along with their favorite picture of the night. This, I told my kids, is for them to never forget what Christmas is all about---LOVE. The love our Savior has for us and the LOVE we have in our eternal family.
May your new year be filled with hope, peace and joy and may it bring you a renewed positive perspective. Here's a few pics including the magic memory boxes :)














































Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Charlie Brown Christmas







Well I finally finished making my Peanuts characters to put on my front lawn. It was so inexpensive and fun. I am going to start a tradition and add one more character each year.



Sergio taught me how to use his jigsaw and I am so proud of myself I can now cut wood LOL






Each piece of MDF cost about $6.50 and two characters came out of it. Very economical versus going to those road side places and buying some premade ones.






Decorating the Tree







I forgot to post these pics. The boys love to help me decorate the tree. We have our MAIN tree in the dining room and the other tree ( a smaller one) is in our family room. The ornaments are all mostly gold colored and I have been collecting them since Ellison was 2. I have quite a collection. We decided to put those on the smaller tree and we bought some new silver and blue ones for the big tree in the dining room. It's a wonderful feeling watching the boys decorate the tree.



Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cleaning up a VERY messy room!

So today I thought I would clean my boys' very messy room! I had been putting it off for many months. And this is what I had to work with.




After 9 hours of work, 2 bags full of trash and 2 boxes filled with toys and old costumes that went to Freecycle I was done! I threatened Josh and Aaron that if they moved any one of those Star Wars action figures I so lovingly placed on their dresser, there would be no more Christmas for them!!
Here is the result: I should be a friggin' professional organizer after this task! I also want to point out that this bedroom also had a hideous wallpaper that was peeling at the seams. It took 6 of us to scrape it all off and repaint the walls. I love this new color. It is so soothing. It is called "crisp celery". I love a clean, organized house :)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Artsy Family

Josh is also a very good artist. He took some art classes this past summer with Annie Royer who is an awesome artist! Highly recommend her. I am saving up some money to have his paintings framed so I can have them up.
Here they are:



The first one is my favorite. This was his very first time working with acrylics and learning about colors and composition. He will continue his classes with her probably in the spring.

Feeling Crafty

Outdoor Christmas Wood Cut Out
Today I was feeling crafty and in the Christmas mood. One of my favorite holiday movies is A Charlie Brown Christmas so I decided to create my own painted, wooden outdoor decor. Here is the pic of the Snoopy I painted:


I still need to cut him out and his doghouse is painted but needs to be put together. I will also paint Charlie Brown, Lucy, Woodstock and the tree. I will post pics once they are set up outside:)
Tutorial:
MDF Boards (you choose the size)
Pencil or chalk
Craft Paint
Brushes or Sponge Brushes
Black Sharpie
Jigsaw
Wooden stake (either bought or you can make your own)
Clear Acrylic Spray to protect the wood


First I printed out a picture of what I wanted to draw. I wanted Snoopy so I got my copy of A Charlie Brown Christmas and made a copy on my all in none printer.
I then just freehanded it onto the board with pencil (here it's plywood, but believe me when I say BUY MDF it's much easier to work with as I later found out.)
Then I started to paint it. When I finished painting it I had my hubby show me how to cut it with a jigsaw.
He said I should have waited to paint it AFTER we cut it, but I didn't care. I wanted to make sure I saw where to make the cuts. You make the call cut either before or after. Any scratching I did on the painted surface was quickly touched up. Then I outlined the character with a black sharpie (one of those fat tipped ones) or if you have a steady hand you can outline it with a brush and black paint. Then you just spray it with a clear acrylic coating to protect it.
Then I nailed a stake 2/3 of the way up from the figure on the back. The stake was made by my hubby.
And there you go! Instant Christmas Outdoor decor for a FRACTION of the price of the roadside vendors.




Christmas Door Hanging
This year instead of a wreath on my door I decided to do something different. A couple of months ago I went to the Octoberfest downtown and picked up some old wooden shutters for like $2. I decided to turn one of those into my door decoration. Here are some pics of it:
I simply took the shutter and a Pine Spray I had in storage. I saw this really pretty birdie at Target and I got him for about $4. The ribbon I already had on hand. I just used some floral wire to tie the pine spray thru the shutter slats and I used the same floral wire to tie the bird to the pine sprig with a dab of hot glue. And that's all there is to it. I'll have to post a pic of it hanging on my door soon.
Linking up to these parties:
Thrifty Decor Chick Before and After
Centsational Girl Christmas Linky Party
Funky Junk Interiors

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Bathroom Re-do

When we first moved into this house a year ago most of the rooms were covered in pretty hideous wallpaper. It made the house look dated and quite frankly ugly. After many, many hours of intense labor, we took off all the wallpaper and re-textured the walls with a faux finish and repainted. Here is a pic of our "new bathroom"


I only have the little bench seat to recover. I am going to cover it in a nice burgundy sheen fabric to match the curtains. Also, the curtains cost me only $14.99 for the whole window set at Wal-Mart. What a deal! The rest I already had.
We also redid the kitchen. We actually took a pretty turquoise vase and had them color match it at home depot. We absolutely love it!
Here are some pics of that:




The reason I am so proud of this endeavor is that it took 5 of us, no 6 of us to take down that darned wall paper! Whoever invented wall paper should be shot! It is the worst invention ever!! Ok..rant over. So, anyway, there you have it, our new kitchen and bath sans wallpaper.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Relaxing Sunday


Sundays are a special day for us. Yesterday we just went to church and came home and loafed around. We mostly watched movies the rest of the day and I felt like baking. So I started baking some cupcakes.

At the end of the day we just crashed from all the past week's exhaustion of Thanksgiving and shopping. I am glad to get back to normal.
Now I have the Joy of cleaning up our study (yuck)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008





I am so happy and thankful for my wonderful family. Especially my grandmother who is here visiting from Laredo. My grandmother raised me and taught me some valuable things, such as:
Be a hard worker-do a great job no matter what the job is- from pet store poop cleaner to CFO of a rural town!

Be honest and treat others with respect

Be clean-maintain a clean home, it doesn't matter if your floors are dirt floors (they used to be) or made of the finest imported italian tiles, keep your house clean!

Be pretty-this one has always stuck...my granma told me, always look pretty for your husband, he is out working all day with pretty women who are all "dolled up"at work and the last thing he wants is to come home to a wife with no make up on and sweats! I always remember this bit of advice and I NEVER EVER wear sweats! I want my husband to come home to a pretty wife (so far it's worked, we just celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary..and they said it wouldn't last (I was 15 he was 19 when we met ;)

My granmother is a treasure chest of knowledge, experience and wisdom. I am honored to be named after her, Aurora.
We celebrated Thanksgiving by taking the kids and my grandmother to the Tanglewood resort for lunch. It was yummy!! And no dishes to wash! We are so thankful for the many blessings that our Heavenly Father has bestowed upon us!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Only four more working days!!

YESS!! Next Wednesday is my last day working at my current job. I am SO looking forward to being my own boss again. I haven't had time to actually get excited about this new venture in my life because all week I have been battling this awful crud that is going around. It has caused my skin to break out something awful especially around my nose,and so, needless to say I am not a pretty sight!! I got my doctor to finally call me in some pretty strong antibiotics so hopefully I can feel better for Thanksgiving and the family photo shoot we have scheduled for the following Saturday. On a happier note, my grandmother is visiting me and we always enjoy her coming over. We love her so much.
I will be going to "market" this Saturday to purchase some merchandise that I will have on hand for my holiday open house on the 5th and 6th. We always have so much fun with these and I love meeting other ladies who are at home crafters and home based businesses.
Well, I guess I better go off to bed now.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Trophy



Last Friday Aaron's T ball team met up at Peter Piper Pizza for trophies. He was so excited to get there. It was our first time there and his second season at TBall. He played the advanced Tball this time and he really seems to like it. He's even pretty good, and coming from artsy-fartsy, geeky (me) parents like us, this is a BIG deal!! He will play again in the spring and he is getting good at it so he will most likely not need the T anymore. We are proud of him. We especially love to see his silly faces. This kid's a character.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

An Historic Night!


Tonight my family and I stayed up to witness a historic event! We are overjoyed that Barack Obama is our next president!! I had predicted his win many months ago. I have always seen in him a freshness and innovation that has been lacking in the current political climate. As a government employee, I am intimately aware of how politics works. And I am very excited to have a brand new voice for the people. Hurray!! I explained to my children how this is a time in history that they shall never forget!! We had a little election party here at home with my sister and her family.
I shall never forget this night :)

Friday, October 31, 2008

Nightmare Before Christmas!

This year we decided on a Halloween theme

Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas!
If you haven't seen this masterpiece you are missing out BIG TIME! Ever since Ellison was 2 she has been in love with Jack Skellington. The movie is all claymation and the songs are wonderful. It took my family (mostly Sergio and Ellison) over a month to hand craft the characters and we're not through yet! We are planning on adding more characters for next year. We had lots of people taking pictures in front of our house and video taping our display :)
We even had the soundtrack playing. It was a great Halloween. Josh and Aaron were Boba and Jengo Fett. Ellison was a cute witch.
And Sergio and I had a blast handing out candy to all the neighborhood kids. Now on to our Christmas display (hee hee hee )

HAPPY HALOWEEN!!

Well I set out to make some Halloween memories with the kids by baking some Halloween cookies, except they weren't interested in the least! So I ended up making them by myself. At least they had fun eating them.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Proud Parents

Sergio and I went to talk to Josh's teacher, Ms.Galyon. Josh is in 5th grade now. We were not surprised to hear her rave about him. We are so lucky to be his parents. These are the words she used to describe our son:
Self Motivated
Respectful
Mature for his age (he just turned 11)
He's not a goof ball (that's good)
Incredibly bright
Gets along well with everyone
Wish all 30 of them were just like him
He is funny!
He does not want to attract attention to himself
I recommend he goes into the GT program-Alpha

Needless to say, Sergio and I were beaming with love and pride for this wonderful boy we get to call our son. He is exactly the same way at home. Josh has been recommended to enroll in the GT (gifted program) before when he was in the 2nd grade. But I tell ya, this guy is so sharp he figured out what the testing was for, and now, years later, informed us he purposely failed it!! He didn't get a 97% percentile, he got 95% percentile and did not get in. We were puzzled of course, since he has always been so bright. I asked him why he didn't want to be in alpha, and he simply said, I don't think it's important...that is not going to guarantee that I am successful in my life". Can you believe that?? I tell you this guy is sharp!! He is exceptionally gifted in math and science but he told us he DOES NOT want to be "different". He states " my life is great right now..and I don't want to change it". This is also the same kid who has very deep, spiritual conversations with me and I do feel there is an old spirit living within that 11 year old boy's body.
Now, for Aaron's conference tomorrow morning. This little guy is a character LOL But he is a sweetheart too. :)

Saturday, October 18, 2008

UNT and Driver's Permit

Well she finally did it! Ellison has her driver's permit.
YAY!! She was so excited! The line was long but we stuck to it.

She doesn't look excited in the pic >>>>>> lol

Now come April she will be a licensed driver. We plan on taking her out driving many times over the next few days and months.

Here she is with her driver's permit





Then we took her to UNT to take a tour of the University. She plans on applying to their art program and maybe interning for Disney in the future!!

Ellison actually has enough credits to graduate this year (her junior year) but she wants to take a bunch of art classes next year just for fun!!

She also is doing very well in school taking 3 AP classes!! She was taking a 4th AP class which was actually a GT class YIKES!

Her counselor asked me if she was planning to major in Engineering with all the advanced math she has under her belt, but I told her art will be her major. She then recommended that we take her out of the GT class and into her favorite subject which is Algebra 3. We took her recommendation and took a load off of Ellison.

Anyway, back to the UNT tour.

Here's a few pics of the tour:







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