December 26, 2009

Daily December Activities Revisited

December 1: Holiday Mail for Heros
December 2: Zoo Lights
December 3: Christmas Coloring Page
December 4: Gingerbread House
December 5: Toys for Tots, Letter to Santa, and Christmas Party
December 6: Let's Say Thanks and Ornaments
December 7: Make A Child Smile and Ornament
December 8: Christmas Cards
December 9: Learn About Another Countries Christmas Traditions (United Kingdom)
December 10: Any Soldier
December 11: Office Toy Drive and Online Cookie Exchange
December 12: Purchase formula for shelter, Fourth Avenue Winter Street Fair, Parade of Lights
December 13: Christmas Candy (to share with neighbors)
December 14: Deliver most of Christmas Candy and Attend Party at Florentino's
December 15: Deliver the Rest of Christmas Candy, Donate Formula to Shelter, and Alex's Letter from Santa
December 16: Cookie Exchange and Gabe's Office Party
December 17: Color Me Mine
December 18: Winterhaven Festival of Lights
December 19: Holiday Festival and Follow That Star
December 20: Hand Print Mitten Ornaments
December 21: Christmas Carols and Dancing
December 22: My Special Christmas Adventure Book
December 23: Driving around looking at Christmas Lights and Watched How the Grinch Stole Christmas
December 24: Library Story Time, Watched Rudolph, Read The Night Before Christmas, Read Luke 2:1-18, Made Cookies for Santa
December 25: Opened Presents and Christmas Party

December 15, 2009

December 15

Today Gabe delivered the remainder of the Christmas Candy. I donated the formula that we purchased to the shelter. Alex, Gabe, and I read Alex's letter from Santa.

Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14.

December 12, 2009

December 12

Today we purchased some formula to donate to a shelter. They have several new babies and formula is a really big expense for them. Next we went to the Fourth Avenue Winter Street Fair. We walked around the fair and had dinner at Magpies. After dinner we walked to the Parade of Lights route, had a seat, and waited on the parade to begin. The parade was a lot longer than I expected. It was around an hour and a half. Alex liked watching the lights, but he especially liked the trucks. Of course, Santa made an appearance at the end of the parade.

The storm trooper made it to this parade too.

One of the trucks that Alex liked.


Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11.

December 11, 2009

December 11

Today we donated toys to the toy drive at Gabe's office. He is actually in charge of the event and I always (well, since last year when we moved here) make the ornaments that hang on the tree. They are simple little circles in different colors with an age, gender, and gift on the tag. There is always a practical gift listed on the tag as well. For example, the word "toy" will be on the tag along with either "socks" or "soft lunch box". Something that is needed along with something that is wanted. I guess it is more than just a "toy drive", because things are purchased for adults too.

I am participating in an online cookie exchange over at The Mom Creative. Check out my recipe here.

On an unrelated topic, our new kitchen table is going to be delivered today. I am pretty excited about it. Also, our friend, Kevin, is coming over for dinner tonight. I am going to make fajitas...yummy! I think we will have some strawberry ice cream for dessert. Gabe and I made it in our ice cream maker. We have also tried the vanilla, but so far the strawberry is my favorite.

I also finished The Shack. It is an interesting book. It managed to keep my interest and keep me thinking. I was always wondering what was going to happen next.

Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10.

December 10, 2009

December 10

Today's daily December project was sending care packages to deployed troops. You can do it too! Just go to the Any Soldier website and click on Where to Send. A list of soldiers will show up on the left of the screen. I chose to sort by the number of times that the address had been requested and chose to send packages to two of the individuals that had the least number of requests. The packages are distributed to a soldier in the group that does not get a lot of mail, however, all of the contents are shared. They also have little websites where they can enter special requests.

Some of the items that we sent were zip lock bags, hand sanitizer (in a zip lock bag), hot chocolate, mac and cheese, word search books, pens, water flavor packets, candy canes, smarties, DVDs (not all groups have DVD players), frisbee, baby wipes, and some other odds and ends. Basically whatever I could stuff into a priority box. If you use the military flat rate box (and you are sending the package to an APO, etc.) you get $2.00 off of the large flat rate priority mail box rate. If we send a package again, I think I am going to fill a box with canned goods, then I will really get my monies worth on the shipping. Technically our packages were for Any Marine. Any soldier goes to all branches of the service, or you can select a specific branch like I did.

Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9.

December 6, 2009

December 6

Today we each sent a postcard through Let's Say Thanks. You can do it too! It is easy and free. Just select the postcard you would like to send, choose a message or write your own, and hit send. Xerox prints the postcards and sends them to deployed troops. It only takes a second to send one or even more.

We also made some Christmas ornaments. I did most of the prep work, but Alex glued the cotton balls to the popsicle stick.



I actually had a more age appropriate ornament activity planned, but I could not find the contact paper.

Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.

December 5, 2009

December 5

Today was a pretty busy day. We went to the Pecan Festival. It was actually more entertaining than we thought it would be. I really liked the parking lot. Instead of gravel, they used pecan shells as a covering. What a creative use!

Pecan shell parking lot.

Next we headed to Toys R Us. We dropped off our Toys for Tots donations. Alex has both of the toys that we donated and he really likes playing with them. So hopefully they are good ones. December 6 is the last day to drop off toys at Toys R Us, but you can always make a donation online.

I have a picture of Alex and the Marine, but I didn't ask permission to post the picture and I haven't blurred the Marine out of the picture yet.

Our next stop was the mall. We had to mail his letter to Santa at Macy's. Macy's will donate $1.00 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation for each letter collected.

Dropping off the letter to Santa.

We came back home to get ready for the Christmas party that we went to tonight. It was fun. I don't have any pictures right now. I did take my camera, but our friend was taking pictures with his fancy camera, so I am just going to get copies of his photos. He is also the same guy that ended up taking pictures for Alex's first birthday party.

So, I realize that we completed more than one Christmas activity today, but it is just how things worked out.

Follow our other daily December activities. December 1, 2, 3, and 4.

December 1, 2009

My Spin on 25 Days of Christmas & December 1

Along the lines of Ali Edward's 25 Days of Christmas, I am doing my own spin on the idea. I have a scrapbook with one page for the first 25 days in December. I am going to add one photo or item for each day. To help this project along we are going to do one holiday related activity everyday in December. Some must be done on certain days (ex., open Christmas presents) and some can be done on any day in December (ex., learn about Christmas traditions in another country). I am pretty excited about this little project. At a minimum, I will try to post our activities on a weekly basis. I have also been considering going back and adding activities since Thanksgiving because I couldn't wait to put up the tree and Alex has already had his picture taken with Santa.

So, day 1 is already scrapbooked and in the album. There is a program called Holiday Mail for Heros and it is sponsored by the Red Cross. Basically, individuals or groups send cards to a P.O. Box and then the cards are distributed to service members, families, or veterans across the United States and abroad. There is still time to participate in this program, but you must do it soon because the deadline is quickly approaching. For more information, visit the Red Cross.

November 12, 2009

Craft Hope Quilt

On Monday I finished and mailed my quilt for Margaret's Hope Chest. They will be distributing quilts to the 200+ homeless children in the Grand Rapids (Michigan) Public School system during the Christmas season. The organizers of the event work through a site called Craft Hope. This is the fist project I have participated in, but if I am able to make the craft I will participate in many more.

Craft Hope Quilt.jpg
This is the quilt that I sent for the project. There are flames printed on the black material. The request was for boy quilts, since they were receiving a lot of girl quilts. The back of the quilt is flannel and I even sewed a little pocket. It is a soft and warm quilt. I hope that someone really enjoys it. Due to my time restrictions, I just made a simple nine block quilt.

September 30, 2009

Las Vegas (Wednesday - 09/30/09)

We left for Las Vegas today. I have a conference to attend. I still need a few TQ CE credits. Basically, it amounts to listening to a 2 hour lecture and taking a test to see if you actually paid attention and learned something. I have quite a few hours I will be attending.

Alex Plane.jpg
Alex on the airplane.

Once we checked into our room, I changed clothes. Gabe, Alex, and I grabbed lunch at the Grand Lux Cafe and then I went to class. Gabe & Alex headed to the airport to pick up Gabe's parents and then to Target to get some necessary supplies (i.e., diapers, baby food, etc.). I joined them again in the evening and we went to the buffet at the Wynn for dinner. Since this is our hotel, we didn't have to go very far for dinner. I think I got my monies worth at the dessert portion.

I was pleasantly suprised when Gabe's mom gave me several baby blankets for Greyson's Gift. Be sure and check out the website and/or my original entry to see how you can help.

September 26, 2009

Greyson's Gift Blankets

I mailed these blankets out today.


If you missed my post on Greyson's Gift, you can read it here.

September 17, 2009

Can you sew, crochet, or knit?

Can you sew, crochet, or knit? If you can, please consider joining me in making baby blankets for Greyson's Gift.

I am looking for your help. Hospitals all across the country are in need of small, very small, baby blankets. In cases of fetal demise, babies are so tiny, even the smallest nursery blanket is much too big to wrap around their tiny bodies.

what they need:
12" x 12" and 24" x 24" flannel receiving blankets, in small pink, baby blue, white, and yellow prints. Use your best judgement, we don't want the prints of the blankets to detract from very small babies.

The blankets also need to be double layered.

I am off to the store to buy some supplies.

July 31, 2009

Mostly Finished Packing

Thursday I went to my book club meeting. It was a lot of fun to get together and discuss the book. There is a meeting once a month and I plan on going to the August meeting too.

After the meeting Alex and I ran some errands. We also dropped off nine cans of formula at a shelter. Gabe does some work with the shelter and there is an infant there currently. There were multiple types of formula. They were all unopened. I was going to take them back to Wal-Mart and get my money back, but it turns out they just throw unopened food away. After giving me back my money, they would have thrown away the nine cans of formula. The idea of trashing perfectly good formula really bothered me, so I donated it instead. You might be wondering why I had nine cans of unopened formula. We went through twelve types of formula with Alex until we found one that he could take.

I finally finished packing. I still have a few last minute items to pack (like my laptop). Hopefully I won't be too tired to remember tomorrow morning.

I managed to finish two Christmas presents last night and two more tonight. I think I am down to 16 or so. Go me!

December 14, 2007

Toys For Tots

I have been donating to Toys For Tots for several years now. Unfortunately, this year Gabe and I did not purchase the toys and make it to the donation location in time (today at noon was the last drop off location that I could find). The good new is that you can donate online, so that is what we did. The donations are primarily used to purchase toys for older children. If you are in the giving mood and would like to make a donation to Toys for Tots click the link. Donations are tax deductible.

December 7, 2007


We have been working on the house a lot. Our bedroom is painted and now all we need to do is install the floor and new closet doors. Gabe is going to take half of a vacation day today so that we can work on the floors. The bathroom has a few small finishing touches for our part of the update. The bathtub and shower doors are going to be professionally installed sometime in early January. We watched the movie White Coats yesterday. My advice would be save your time and watch something else. I could see how the series Scrubs could be based off of it. However, I really like Scrubs and White Coats just didn't do it for me. We are going to my office Christmas party tonight and Gabe's Christmas party tomorrow night. I have been reading Double Cross since Monday. Actually I read it on Monday and for about a half an hour yesterday. I only have about 50 pages left, so I just need to find some time to finish it. Hopefully today, otherwise tomorrow. I just donated a sink, vanity, mirror, faucet, some bathroom hardware, another sink, and counter top to Family Rescue. They found one of my listings on Craigslist, but then I gave them quite a bit more. If you have some things that you don't need they would greatly appreciate the donation. They will even come and pick up your unwanted items. I was going to have a rummage sale this spring, but now I am seriously considering just donating everything.