Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Show Us Your Life - Christmas cookies and treats

I don't do a lot of baking at Christmas time (or really ever) but I really want to start. Some of my sweet neighbors brought over a thing of goodies last night. As Harper gets older I want to bake with her and make that a tradition. I know a lot of us always have cookie exchange parties to go to this time of year.
So let's get some good ideas - share your cookies, fudge, treats that you make this time of year!

(My blog friend JESSICA hosted a virtual cookie exchange yesterday you might want to check out also - HERE)

Show Us Your Life - Christmas Trees

Christmas Tour of Homes with The Nester


Welcome to my home! I'm excited to share my Christmas decorations and participate in the Nester Christmas Tour of Homes. (If you are a blog reader of mine - I'm not going to do a MckLinky - I thought we could all just sign up on the Nester!)

This is my bright red and green and zebra tree in our dining room. I got this tree for like 75% off a couple of years ago. I used it as our main tree last year. I have kind of collected the ornaments over the last few years and I made some of them.
Last year I made a lot of these monogram ornaments for gifts - and I made them for our family!
I love the big present ornament and the zebra ornament above it. I got both of those at major sales after the holidays! (It pays to shop after not before!)
Another fun idea was to get large (or small) balls and instead of hooks - use fun ribbon to tie them on the tree.
Our first year in this house - we bought this big 9 ft tree. I use a lot of golds and browns on it.
I bought these letter ornaments several years ago and bought 2 H's - just in case I ever finally got my Harper and Hudson. Or Harper and (Hadlee, Hattie, Holden, Hutton.....whatever name we use if we have another girl). ha!
I used stickers to put our monogram on large balls on this tree also!
Some of my favorite gold and brown ornaments
When I was single - I had this little tree and now we use it in our kitchen and I use only gold ornaments and gold mesh. My kitchen and breakfast room are all in golds and browns so I love how it looks in here.

And this year I added this little pink tree in Harper's room and I'm in LOVE with it! I took down her changing pad off the dresser my dad made her a few weeks ago because she is just too big and I'm not just using it like a dresser top.
I love the pink, green and brown ornaments. I've been saving these for a while to use!
A few of these ornaments on this tree were special gifts to her this year.

Show Us your Life - Christmas Traditions

Oh my goodness - Y'ALL - I totally forgot our Show us your life tour this week! Sorry - being out of town for a week and on holiday - I didn't even realize it was FRIDAY!

I'm going to leave my post blank but I would LOVE to hear your family Christmas traditions. I want a lot of great ideas for us to do with Harper.

I have a regular post below this one I just posted also!

Show Us Your Life - Pets

Today is all about Show us your Pets! Most of you know that this is my dog Dawson. Scott gave him to me for Christmas in 2002. A year before we got married. We had gone to Barnes and Noble one day in November or December and someone was outside selling little Bichon puppies. I had never seen a Bichon before but I held one and loved it so much. And then right before Christmas one cold night - Scott rang my doorbell and when I opened it - he pulled this little white ball of fur out of his coat. And it was love at first sight.
I put him in my bathroom right off my bedroom that night with a baby gate. He bounced and cried all night. I tried it again the next night. Same thing. So the third night I gave in and put him in bed with me. Seven years later and he still sleeps with me. Only now it's right between me and Scott.
Bichons are great dogs because they have sweet personalities and they don't shed! They are great for people with allergies.
But in these two pictures - you can see how life has changed this year. Dawson used to be the grand dog. He used to be #1 around here.
And someone has stolen his place. (Don't worry - my dad wasn't driving the 4 wheeler in either of these pictures. They just sat on it for pictures).

But Dawson will always be my first baby and I dread the day he ever goes to doggie heaven. He is my little shadow. He follows me constantly. He loves Scott but he is a momma's baby.

Tell us about your pets!?!?!

P.S. I'd also love it if you would go read Shaun's post and Patricia's post. They are worth a few minutes of your time!

Show Us your Life - Thanskgiving Recipes and Traditions

Today is Show us your life Thanksgiving Recipes and Traditions!

I am SOOOOOOOOOO late getting this up - I apologize!

We have the traditional Turkey at our house. My mom usually makes cornbread dressing, green bean casserole and potato casserole. We have the relish dish - with pickles and olives - do ya'll have that? It was always my brother and I's favorite thing! And pumpkin and pecan pies! Yum!

This is the potato casserole we always have:

Hashbrown Casserole

1 package frozen hashbrown casseroles
1 8 oz container sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 cups cheddar cheese
1 stick butter melted

Combine 1st 4 ingredients and put in a 9 x12 baking dish. Top with cornflakes and melted butter. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

I look forward to seeing any unique recipes you might have or anyone that might stray from the normal turkey!!!!

Show Us Your Life - Halloween Costumes

This week we are showing off Halloween costumes. Show us what you have planned for this year or what you have worn in the past - you, your kids, your pets:

We have always dressed Dawson up for Halloween - these are from the past few years:

Dawson the bat
Dawson the horse - see the cowboy riding him?
Maybe my favorite - Dawson the Hawaiian tourist

I can't wait to see your costumes and maybe get some ideas for the future!

Show Us Your LIfe - Fall Decorations

First of all - last week was a great success!!! I hope you all enjoyed shopping! I'm going to keep that post up over on the Show Us your Life blog! (I haven't put it up yet but it will be soon!) I thought maybe we could do that every 3-4 months! It's a great way to feature Moms who make stuff and a great place to get good finds!

Well - I don't really decorate for fall. This is about the extent of it. In fact I forgot to take a picture today so this was last year and this year I haven't even bought mums yet (mostly because I can't figure out how in the world I would get big mums and Harper around in a store). I LOVE fall but I'm just not big on decorating for it. But I'm SO ready to get going on Christmas. I realize it is going to be insane this year with a little monkey in my house who is into everything but I'm going for it anyway!

But I can't wait to see your fall decorations ...............maybe you will motivate me for next year!

Show Us your Life - What do you Make???

What do all these pictures have in common?

These are just a few things that I have either bought Harper or we have been given as a gift that have been made by other women/moms/ladies like yourselves. WAY more creative women than I will EVER be.

I love buying stuff from other women because I know it helps them (and it helps me!) Plus shopping on websites and etsy is so much more fun than the "mall" and can be done anytime and anywhere. And you find so many cute and unique things! For yourself, your child or your home!

I thought it would be a great way to either showcase what you make or shop until you drop before the holidays! So if you have a website - please link on and put in the subject a hint at what it is (exp: bows, picture frames, pillowcase dresses, etc......)

PLEASE NOTE: Please don't include any home based businesses such as Avon, Mary Kay, Pampered Chef, etc..... Those are all wonderful things but this is a carnival for homemade items. All others will be removed. Thanks!!!!

P.S. This post will stay active on so go back and refer to it at anytime. I'll have it there next week.

Show Us Your Life - Tailgates and Favorite Teams

I think you all know I'm crazy about my Arkansas Razorbacks! My parents both went to the U of A and we have been coming to games as long as I can remember. I thought I would share some of my favorite recent pictures and memories (even though I have a lifetime of these).
In 2006 - College Game Day came to Fayetteville for the first time when AR and TN were both ranked. We got up early and came and watched the show and then we BEAT the vols that night. We were not quite "#1" but that night it felt like it!
One of our favorite game day experiences is when our families can come and be with us. Scott's parents usually come up for one game every year. They are coming this weekend for the Auburn game only just the men are going this time.
My parents come for every game so it always gives us an excuse to see them. My dad also comes to most basketball games - he is a crazy fan. I love basketball SO MUCH too but my very favorite is Football. I can not stand baseball (sorry to all of you who love it).
In September 2003 - Scott and I went to Austin with my family to watch the Hogs beat Texas. That was so fun but it was also the HOTTEST I have ever been in my life. It was an 11:00 kickoff and we were sitting in the direct sun. It's also the most sunburnt I've ever been.
Scott and I went to Los Angeles to see Arkansas play USC in the coliseum a few years ago. It was such a fun trip. The game - not so much. I've tried to erase the score from my memory but I'm pretty sure it was like 77-14. yikes.
In 2002 I hitched along with a group of people going to watch the hogs play in Knoxville. I only knew a few of this group but I've always wanted to go to a game in Neylend Stadium so bad. I had a great time but once again we lost. In 6 overtimes. BRUTAL. The Tennessee people were SO nice - I would love to go there again. It's a dream of mine to visit all SEC stadiums at least once before I die. I really need to get moving on that. I have 10 more to go.
I love this picture because it was Harper's FIRST Razorback game. I was about 5 months pregnant. This was also the first time I really felt Harper kick a lot - during the game. I guess all my screaming and jumping got her excited. ha!
My friend Hillary is as crazy as I am about the hogs. In fact - we got season tickets the same year and out of almost 80,000 seats - we wound up right next to each other which to this day we still think is amazing. She got married last year and we all posed with Hog noses! How cute is that? I wish we would have done that at our wedding!
And of course my favorite tradition now is dressing Harper up for game day. I can't wait until we can start taking her to games. It will probably be a few years but I hope she grows up loving college football and the hogs as much as I do. I'm pretty sure she has no choice.

The Razorbacks have a tradition of Calling the Hogs! We do it all the time at games, pep rallys, just randomly walking down the street (just kidding). We raise our arms and shake our hands and yell:
Whooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Pig Sooie
Whooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Pig Sooie
Whooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Pig Sooie
and then shake our fists and say "RAZORBACKS"

Our team also has the tradition of running out into an "A" formed by the band at every game!

Hog fans love to tailgate as pretty much every school does. What you will probably find the most at each tailgate is Barbeque. We love BBQ in Arkansas. Which is ironic - if you think about the fact we are eating "pork". ha!

Let's hear it for your teams!


Update: you asked for it so here it is:

Show Us Your Life - Baby Gear

Welcome to Show Us Your Life Friday!!!
You can find all the other "Show Us Your Life" posts HERE!

Notice next week we will showing off our teams, tailgating, traditions, etc. and then the following week you will be able to feature your home based businesses - things you make and sell - and we can all do a little early holiday shopping and support other moms! (If that goes well - we can try to do it again in the spring/summer)

When I was pregnant with Harper - I did a little blog polling about what I really needed for a baby and what really wasn't necessary. It helped me a lot so I thought it would be great if we all shared again and then all of those who are pregnant or hoping to be pregnant can refer to this!
The thing to remember is all babies are different - so what worked great for me - doesn't mean it will work for you but I am still happy to share my experiences!
(By the way - how cute is the little princess in her crown onesie - find it HERE)

1. Bouncy seat - I had one made by Boppy. This was one of our best buys. Harper slept in it for the first probably 8 weeks of her life. It was also a great place to lay her down and it always kept her happy and calm. We had to quit using it around 4-5 months once she started climbing out.
2. Boppy Pillow - if you are nursing - I highly recommend it. It was the perfect fit for Harper to lay on and it made it so comfortable. We are still using it. She took a lot of great naps on that boppy pillow.
3. Pack and Play - Harper slept in this until she was 6 months old and we finally moved her to her own room. It was also a great changing table for those first 6 months. And this weekend - I'm finally converting it to a play pen for her and I think we will continue to get great use. (and in the meantime - it's been a great clothes hanger in our bedroom - ha!)
4. Swing - we had a Graco swing. Pretty much everything we bought was neutral colored so if we have a boy we can re-use. At first Harper HATED the swing but eventually she liked it. She took a few great naps in this as well. We quit using it around 5 months because she kept trying to climb out.
5. Exersaucer - she didn't like this at first but it's been a lifesaver for the last 3-4 months. She loves being in it and she sits in it every day and plays and eats a snack and just laughs and has so much fun. And I can cook dinner or take a shower!
6. Car seat/stroller system - we bought one by Graco and have loved it. We have taken a lot of walks in her stroller both when the car seat was in it and now facing out. And it folds down nicely. It's been great for shopping or walking.
7. Bath tub with sling - Harper loved bath time. We always used this in the kitchen sink. Just in the last month we have started giving her a bath in the bathtub sitting up and it is so much better - we both love baths this way. But her little bathtub worked great (a yellow $20 kind from Wal-Mart).
8. Humidifier - We have a cool mist and a warm one and they have both been important and have helped Harper sleep. I highly recommend having both.
9. Hooter Hider - if you are nursing - this is a MUST! (if you ever plan to leave the house)
10. Praise Baby DVD's - we have Baby Enstein but Harper is not the biggest fan but she NEVER gets tired of these and the music is so soothing and inspirational. It's a blessing to me and her.

1. Diaper Genie - I don't know if we didn't like it - we just opted out of this. It's been plenty easy to keep a small waste basket and just empty it in our big trash barrell every other day or so.
2. Wipes warmer - just never wanted to take the time to use it and since the hospital didn't use one - we never even tried.
3. Bumbo - I liked this but she probably only sat in it a few times for me to take pictures or maybe a few minutes a day. I was always worried she would fall over in it so I really didn't use it much. Probably not worth the money to me.
4. Sling/Baby Carrier - I had two different kinds and Harper HATED both - never used either one. But a lot of babies love these - so you never know.
5. I spent a lot of time worry about bottles and we have yet to use any. ha! Harper has probably taken less than 5 bottles in her life.
6. Swaddler blankets - regular blankets worked just fine and Harper really didn't love being swaddled after a few weeks anyway.
Crawl or walk over and show us what you used!