Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mealtime Mirth

Who doesn't like having lunch with friends?

 gotta love of the mid chewing/munching shot

or dinner for that matter?

Sunday, January 22, 2012


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Save your Marriage

Save your Marriage in Five Minutes a Day. By Bonnie Jacobson with Alexia Paul

Let me start off by saying my marriage isn't in trouble. When I posted that this was what I was reading this I got a few comments to see if we were okay. Brad also saw me reading it and said, "You can't tell people you're reading that they'll think we have problems." Let them think what they will, I'm comfortable enough with my marriage that I don't mind saying I want to be a better person, spouse, mother, friend, etc.

With that kind of feedback I think it's clear there could have been a better title for this book. It's not just for people who have a marriage in trouble. This book has great insight and tips for ANY marriage. A more fitting title would be "Strengthen your Marriage in Five Minutes a Day" or "Improve your Marriage in Five Minutes a day." The author says right in the introduction, "I wanted to write a book...a marriage vaccination to be used for cure or prevention, depending on whether a union is floundering or flourishing."  I really like how she likened it to a prevention. My goal would be to never get to a point where our marriage would need "saving" but that it would be on a path where we are continually striving to improve and strengthen ourselves and our relationship. We're far from perfect so our improvement path is LONG but the one we want to be on. She reminds us of the movie Groundhog's day where the character wakes up to the same problems each day until he changes himself.

Each chapter addresses a different dynamic and talks about them then at the end of the chapter there is a quick reference for things you could do in just five minutes a day to work on that area. She also shows easy ways to ask questions in a non-threatening manner to try to understand and help your spouse understand the why and how you differ in personality or points of view.

One of the chapters deals with affection and why it is important in a marriage. I like how she states, "You need continuity of affection to keep you and your spouse bonded; without it, you risk being together, but feeling alone."  As part of the five-minute strategies she gives the reason why this is important. "Offering your spouse affection through touch is a simple- and quick - way to cement your love on a daily basis. A tender gestures only takes a few minutes, but like a stone thrown into a pond, it will reverberate throughout your day. And, in your darker moments, taking fave minutes to physically shore up your marriage will let the light back in."

Obviously, not everything in the book applies to everybody but there is a little something for everyone, I think. "Five minutes a day is nothing. You likely take that much time to look for your keys or shave, What could be more important than devoting the same amount of time to offering your spouse a daily affirmation?"

One of my favorite quotes from the book has to do with happiness and joy. "Happiness is transient. It is the fun meal out, the day at the spa. Joy is deeper--and more challenging. With joy often comes struggle, but when you get to the other side, it provides deep satisfaction."

All in all I liked the book. There are some good useful tips that I'm trying to incorporate and other items that it was good to be reminded of.

I received this book complimentary from Thomas Nelson via their Book Sneeze Book Blogger program in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

10 months....I mean 11

I totally spaced doing a 10 month photo shoot. In my defense I did spend most of the day traveling.

At 11 months Em is walking, has two teeth, and is quick to smile.
I feel like she's gained about 5 pounds in the last week...seriously she feels so heavy to me suddenly. 
 She wouldn't let go of the ducks as we where playing today. 

 "Hey give'em back!"

"What does this say?"


 Totally strutting her stuff. (With duck in mouth)
(Yes, I should have been folding all that laundry but playing with the baby was more fun!)

We love this kid!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Real Snow

We finally got some good snow. The girls wanted to go build a snowman. (You know when small children want to build a snowman what they mean is they want you to build a snowman while they run around and play and give you direction and pointers and tell you to make it bigger, etc.) 

Snowball fight!

 Ems "playing" in the snow.
  Emily enjoyed the snow for awhile but was ready to be done by the time we took snowman pictures.  

Finishing touches

Saturday, January 7, 2012

The girls were dying to get out and play in the snow. No time to take off their dress-up clothes. They just donned their snow clothes right on top.

 Excited to be outside.

It's looks like she's praying to Mecca but she's just tasting the snow.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A little peek at Christmas

Here's a little taste of how our Christmas turned out.

We had fun getting packages in the mail.
(Especially the ones filled with packing peanuts.)
We made cookies for Santa and bread for the neighbors.
Christmas Eve included a candlelight dinner, a movie, matching pjs, and a sleepover in the family room.
Daddy got some pjs too, just not pink zebra ones. 
(Although I was SOOO tempted to make his pink.)

We woke up to stockings, new bunk beds, & a doll house.

We opened all kinds of fun presents:
 hats from Cathy,
hats from Aunt Lisa,
(I don't want to hear anyone saying they can't find a hat to wear.)

Emily enjoyed her first Christmas of
Homemade blocks,
first official steps,
and climbing the stairs.

Of course, we enjoyed all kinds of Christmas goodies.
How was your Christmas?

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hello 2012

We might have to try this photo shoot again. It'd be nice to have a picture of the 3 of them together, all smiling and looking at the camera. (I know, I'm setting mighty lofty goals but that's what the new year is all about.)