Best Shot Monday – 12/10/07 – Holiday pictures

After receiving a couple of Christmas cards in the mail this weekend, I realized that if I was going to pull off my plan of having Christmas cards printed with a picture of the kids on it and actually get them in the mail, I needed to get crackin’ – like actually taking a picture! So on Sunday, with the help of 8 inches of snow on the ground translating into a lot of natural light reflecting back into the house (I need all of the help I can get in the winter), I attempted to take some pictures of the kids.

First I did Julian (while Jody bathed Ava – i.e. kept her out of my hair) and got several cute ones of him.

Next I did some of Ava, and, again, got several cute ones of her.

And finally, enlisting my trusty assistant’s Jody’s help, I tried to do both of them together. I’d like to say I got lots of cute ones of the two of them, but that’s just not how it went down. By that time Julian was tired and ready for a nap and Ava had to be bribed with chocolate chips. I don’t use bribery often, but to get a good picture I will pull out all the stops. ;) I did end up with two decent shots of them together, but they weren’t exactly what I had in mind. (Isn’t that always the way?) Anyway, I’m not sharing those captures today, but I am sharing the only other two that I’ve edited – one of each of them individually that I am rather fond of.

12/9/07 - Ava 12/9/07 - Julian

I would love to try again for a great shot of the two of them, but I’m a realist and I know that probably won’t happen for this year’s Christmas card. So I will be happy with what I did capture. And one of these days, when I’m feeling incredibly ambitious, I need to try for a family picture with all four of us in it, since we haven’t done that again since Julian was 15 days old. It’s time.

See more best shots over at Picture This (click the button):
little bsm button

Green tip of the week #5 – Creative uses for used wrapping paper

gift wrapThank you to Heather at October Daisy for this great holiday green tip.

Instead of throwing away all the holiday gift wrap most people accumulate from gift giving, save it! Run it through a paper shredder and use it to stuff gift bags or baskets. The finished result is beautiful!

And here are some more ideas:

Another use for use wrapping paper is when taking down your Christmas tree, use wrapping paper to wrap delicate ornaments, and to provide cushioning between ornaments wherever they are stored.

Also wrapping paper can be shredded and used to protect items you have to ship throughout the year.

Lastly, if you can’t find a use for the old wrapping paper, please recycle it, rather than throwing it in the trash. Check with your city to find out if wrapping paper is accepted in your recycling bin or if they have set up a special program for recycling it after the holidays (which is what my city does).

Have any green tips you’ve recently learned? Please email them to me and I may include your tip with a link to your site or blog in a future post. :)

Yep, crazy

Watching the parade of lights - 12/8/07At the parade of lights - 12/8/07Yes, we are crazy. We braved the cold and all of the snow (we must have 8 to 10 inches) to go to the parade of lights and a holiday lights walk tonight. Lots of bundling and layering was done to ensure adequate warmth. And I had my little heater (Julian) strapped to the front of me. :)

Other than some grousing by Jody as we drove there (well, he drove as he cursed the windshield wipers that were not doing their job) and walked five blocks (he with Ava on his shoulders, and me with Julian in the Ergo) to catch the parade before it ended, it was a good time.

Ava in the snow - 12/8/07The kids enjoyed the parade and lights. We got free hot chocolate and cookies, saw fireworks, and Ava said she saw “two Santas!” So it was a bit crazy with the cold and the snow, but it was a good, fun kind of crazy. :)

Can ya tell I took that pic on the right of the 4 of us with my arm outstretched? Don’t I look a bit manic? LOL See, crazy.


snowIt’s been snowing all day, the current temperature is 18 degrees and feels like 6 degrees and it’s not even dark yet, but we’re planning on taking the kids to watch a holiday parade of lights tonight. Are we crazy? Quite possibly, yes.

Flaunt it Friday: Guilty Pleasures

I saw this carnival over at Penny’s blog and thought this week’s theme – guilty pleasures – seemed like a fun one to jump in on.

chai teachai teaMy newest guilty pleasure is Celestial Seasonings’ Chai Tea – Vanilla Ginger Green Tea flavor with some honey and rice milk mixed in. It’s divine I tell you, and a lot cheaper than picking one up at Starbucks. :) I’m drinking some right now. It’s really the perfect drink for cold snowy mornings, like today.

vanilla ice creamcookiesMy old stand-by guilty pleasure is chocolate, and of course, ice cream. What better thing than to combine my two loves with vanilla ice cream (Alden’s is delicious!) and chocolate sandwich cookies? Mmmmm. I could eat some of that right now and it’s only 9:30 in the morning. ;)

John KrasinskiMy other non-food guilty pleasure is watching “The Office” or, more specifically “Jim Halpert” (played by actor John Krasinski). It would appear that my subconscious mind has developed a crush on Jim, because two weeks ago I dreamed about him three nights in a row. He told me he was going to leave Pam for me (LOL), but I had to prove that I was committed to the relationship. Of course, I couldn’t do that since my subconscious remembered that I am married and have two kids! So it looks like Jim and I won’t be hooking up after all. :oP

Hmm. Drinking chai tea, eating ice cream and cookies, and watching The Office? Now that would be a tasty combination!

What about you? What’s your guilty pleasure?

More Flaunt It Friday participants.

NaBloPoMo burnout

Julian at the park - 12/4/07Am I the only one who’s been feeling slightly less enthusiastic about blogging since NaBloPoMo ended? I admit having the pressure of posting every day removed has allowed me to be a bit more lax in my blogging efforts, and I’m enjoying the break.Julian & Ava at the park - 12/4/07

It’s allowed me time to take the kids to the park when the temps nearly hit 70 degrees on Tuesday (fun!), and to catch up on cleaning, grocery shopping and laundry (not so fun).

It’s allowed me time to submit some pictures to a magazine photo contest – America and the Sea (crossing my fingers).

It’s allowed me more time to spend reading “Pushed: The Painful Truth about Childbirth and Modern Maternity Care.” The book is now overdue from the library, but I can’t bring myself to return it until I finish it. Hopefully that will be in the next couple of days or I’m going to start racking up some serious overdue charges. ;) I plan on reviewing the book once I finish it so you will hear more about it. So far though it’s been excellent!

It’s also allowed me time to work on a new holiday gift guide for women (well, many of the gifts would be great for men too), with lots of giveaways and coupon codes, that I think you will like. That should be up early next week. Yes, I know that’s for my blog, but still. (Jody’s boss has told him that’s the way to win any argument. End it with, “yes, but still.” hehe)

What about you? Are you keeping up with the daily blogging now that NaBloPoMo is over or are you taking it easy and enjoying a bit of a break?