Monday, December 17, 2012

Best past few days ever. Kent is HOME.  

He loved running around with a bulletproof vest and rubber rifle while avoiding fake land mines and pretending he was a GI Joe Medic- but I'm just happy to have some holiday time with him! because we ship out this week and leave him to continue working.  I'm so blessed to have a husband with a great job and a great work ethic- even if it means I don't spend as much time with him as I'd like! Thanks, Kent- for doing it all.

The past few days with Kent have been FULL of festivities!  I love christmas parties!  I love ALL parties really.  

Friday night was Kent's work party. I didn't get any pictures- but it was great.  Kids were invited but I threatened to not go if Kent wanted to take the kids. It was a fancy dress up party and I had no desire to dress up and then wrangle kiddos while eating fancy hors d'oeuvres that they wouldn't touch.  It was lovely to have a night with just Kent.

Saturday night we had our Christmas Extravaganza.  Wear your most festive outfits- and bring your tackiest gift.  It was so fun.  My cheeks hurt from laughing so much!

I got my sweater on a black friday special at Meijer. Kent's is from the Goodwill. The mistletoe and antlers are from Target.

I didn't get nearly enough pictures.  I missed most of the couples who came.

I need to get myself a singing tie and candy cane turtle neck.
The white elephant gift exchange is my FAVORITE part of any party.
Check out the Unicorn picture.  I found that beauty at the goodwill. The Darth Vader Mug (and another wookie mug) were the hot items of the night.
We won Kent's hat and an assortment of canned fish from Russia. Just what I wanted.
Two of the best gifts that night-  wwf talking figurines.
And best sweaters of the night. Amber's santa was a toilet seat cover?!? and Travis' sweater lit up.  Very nice, Barlows.
The rugrats are so excited for Christmas.  We haven't seen some of our family for TWO YEARS!!  that it waaaaay too long and I can't wait for the parties.  Plus- everybody needs to meet our Miss Metta.  Her Auntie Metta has never even seen her in real life!!

She looks more and more like an elf every day with her red scrappy hairdos and her pointy ears. The striped leggings help, too.  She is the funniest little girl.  
And I had to include this picture.  She constantly has her mouth wide open.  It must be genetic- because I have the exact same problem. Always talking or eating or laughing.  She'll even pose like this!  really.

And finally- I HAD to include this.   It's classic.  Yesterday our home teacher called and asked if he could drop something off for the Holidays. Guess what he brought?!  A real live made from scratch ginormous and heavy as a brick classic FRUITCAKE.  He says it's his grandma's recipe.  He also said his wife told him not to deliver them to his families!  that it would be tacky.  

I had to take pictures.  I think if we wrapped it up- it could last for years :)  this thing was a BEAST.
if by chance our home teacher reads this- we ate the whole thing. It was delicious.
Merry Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

staying busy without Kent!!

I'm a busybody. And with Kent gone- my busybody goes into full force.  I like to be out and about distracting myself from lonlieness :)

We've had Christmas parties and all sorts of other fun nearly every day!  Just a few days left.

And qunicy has been having all sorts of her own fun :)  here are a few of her antics from the past week!

this one was Zeb's favorite!  She decided to go for a flight on the plane he made at Lowes.

This little trick made Zeb FURIOUS!  He folded his arms and told me he was 'disappointed' in qunicy.  I had been hesitant about having the elf do anything 'naughty' (aren't we trying to get our kids to be nice?!?) but I thought toilet papering the tree would be fun.  Boy- was I wrong.  he got on the bus grumpy because of it.  "What if I need to Poo, mom? and Qunicy used all of our toilet paper??".

Sunday, December 9, 2012

here we go....

Trying out the real deal photoshop for the first time.  With Kent gone- I gave myself a goal of jumping into my photoshop elements program and figuring out the basics.  I've never used it before (I've only used  small contrasting/brightening tools already in our windows picture viewer). 

 Here's to hoping it makes a big difference with my picture taking.

And here's to Miss Metta in her Holiday dress.  I bought it at the Gap in 2004 when I worked there right after I got home from my mission.  I paid three dollars! and now- 8 years later- I'm finally using it :) 
Every morning I wake up to find her hair a little wilder and her personality a little crazier.  I'm pretty sure all babies this age are wiggly and extremely vocal (?)- but the other 17 babies at church are a little younger- a lot quieter- and 100% less mobile.  So I feel like she's UNRULY. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

just spreading a little christmas cheer.

  We've succumbed.  The Elf on the Shelf made it into our house.  I remember elves on shelves at my Grandma Oswald's house every Christmas growing up- so this little elf brings back fond memories.  I wasn't going to cave into the insanely overpriced elf until Zeb couldn't stop talking about it.  ALL of his friends have elves on shelves.  Why didn't Santa send us one!?  and then I found the whole book and doll shebang online for 13 bucks.  Still a stretch- but better than the 29.95 Target was asking!!

And so we present- Quincy.  Our elf on the shelf.  Named after Zeb's good pal.
And here are some pics of the rugrats sending Christmas cheer to Kent. He's gone. For waaaay too long (which really isn't all that long) at field combat/casualty training.  I guess it's supposed to be really fun (minus the fact that he has to eat MREs for days on end- which apparently leads to constipation! ha! ).  He's training to be a doctor out in the 'field'- so that way if/when deployment occurs- he's ready :)  

Best picture of the day.  I love her angry face.  
And Zeb- my Christmas tree head.  This Elf thing is getting him so excited.  I love seeing his little eyes light up- and his head churning-while he tried to figure out how it works.
Ike's christmas list is impossible. It grows exponentially each day.  Every commerical he sees- he shouts: "I want that on my Christmas list".  Every store we go to- he adds items to it.  He's even creating Metta's list when things are "too girly" for him.

Monday, December 3, 2012

 I haven't blogged very well the last week.  I've been crazy busy- which I love.  working, playing, chasing kids.

This little ragamuffin has suddenly become not a baby anymore.  She's climbing stairs.  She's going through a crazy growth spurt and is obsessed with solid foods.  Bottles just don't cut it these days.  She loves broccoli, beans, blueberries, carrots, zucchini, and even tomatoes.  I am going to force her to be my good eater.  So far so good.

and look at her hair!!! so crazy red.  people comment on it everywhere we go.

Oh- and before I forget- I need to write this down.  Last week after church Zeb was upset about Kent having to go to work.  He turned to me and said word-for-word: "mom, I hate to tell you this- but you talk to me too much." and then he turned to Kent and asked: "can mom go to work instead of you, dad?".  Zeb is usually my buddy.  The one who loves his mom the most.  We're 'best friends' he tells me.  I guess I've got to stop talking to him so much, though.

I've also been doing a lot of picture taking lately.  I've been trying to practice with friends in the area.  I've realized I don't really like taking pictures of babies.  I prefer families or toddlers.  I really do like just taking pictures, though.  and I definitely like to learn new stuff.  

Check out my practicing here.  Don't judge- I'm definitely in the thick of the learning curve, still.  Photography is pretty stinking complicated.  Really I want to be able to make a few bucks so I can buy my dream camera (the nikkon d7000!!) and some new lenses.