Day 30: Thankful for Nest Necklace

I love creating.
I am thankful for the abilities & talents that I have been given, to create fun and beautiful things.
So besides my best creations {KIDS}, even the hour or so of free time I find throughout the day can be so refreshing.

Today, I was able to do this.
Weeks ago, I signed up for a gift exchange over at Freshly Picked here so I got to crafting.
Here's what I got:

These necklaces are so simple and so beautiful.  I got the tutorial from HERE

I was able to do all the die cutting via my eCraft machine.  I love their sd cards they have.  Then I added some gold ribbon as the bird's wing.

It's a very simple card but I love it.

Day 29: Thankful for Friends

I waited for the end to do this because I was hoping I could get some pictures of friends during this month.

But nope.

And that's okay.  I would have a lot of pictures of friends which would have made a very long post.

So a little about me, I like having friends.  I like feeling accepted and wanted and liked.  Who doesn't, right?

The past 3 years have been rough making friends since we have moved every year.  So now, that we are somewhat in a stable place, friends are back in my vocabulary :)

Don't get me wrong, through each move, I've made friends along the way that I still talk to.  It's so nice to have such an array of friends from different backgrounds and places.

If it wasn't for friends, I wouldn't have survived high school, college, dental school, parenting and beyond!

I am thankful for friends through out the years that I have had, to help me grow, love, laugh through the worst and best of times.

I can't list them all but if you are reading this, then that right there proves you are my friend ;)

Thank you!

Day 28: Thankful for the Christmas Tree

Tonight was "the" night...setting up the Christmas decorations!
The kids were really excited all day since we picked up a tree from Target today.

We opted for fake since the benefits of lasting a long time, already lit, no needles, no water, no poking...

Luke wasn't into the fun decorating that i had hoped for.  He instead liked to throw the ornaments at the tree and knock down all the ones already on the tree....BEDTIME!!

The girls were pro at this.  I just sat there and let them do all the work ;)

Alright, back to normal color ;)

This is how it turned out.  love it.  I am going to pick up some colored ornaments so it's not to gold.  thinking pink or purple :)

Day 27: Thankful for Joe's Family

Joe grew up in a big family.
He is the oldest of 9 kids!

So there are lots of them scattered all over the country (one even in Panama right now!)
So we usually can only get together for weddings.

Joe came from a great family!  Strong in the church and very intelligent.
It's a fun stage right now, as everyone is getting older, everyone starting to get married, more girls coming into the family ;)

Grateful that I was married into this family.  Our kids adore each of their uncles and aunts.  They love their grandparents too.  They are really spoiled.

And again, miss them around the holidays.  Until the next time we see each other!  (Maybe Tim's or Stephen's wedding?!)

Day 26: Thankful for MY familiy

 Holidays tend to be spent with family.
Sadly, all mine are in UT while i'm over in WA.
I miss them like crazy but then that makes the reunions that much sweeter.
These were taken May of 2010.  The babies have changed but that's about it.  Oh, and maybe I don't have long hair anymore ;)

My family has traditions that I want to implement into my own.  Especially around the holidays.
I miss my sisters and the fun we have together.  I miss my brothers and the bond we share through Nin 64 ;)
My parents are always sacrificing something for us.  I love them so much.

 Love my brothers and sisters. even when they do stupid things that make me want to slap them in the face...cough cough ;)

If only we could live in UT!!  Oh well.  We can be the fun Aunt and Uncle who live in "cool WA" for now :)

Day 25: Thankful for Tradition

This was our first year that we celebrated Thanksgiving alone, as a little family with a real turkey.
We were kind of intimidated about the whole thing.
And of course, the day off, we finally read the books on what to do and with what and how long.
Joe was a bit nervous that we were going to blow it.
I didn't know where to start.
But Joe stepped it up and took care of the turkey, while I did all the rest of the traditional food.
seriously so glad Joe knows how to cook!
So here's our beaut fresh out of the oven.  Turned out so great!

What's Thanksgiving without the mess :)  Ha and look, you can see me in the window...kind of scary...

Sneaking a taste ;)

Enjoying our feast!  It was so fun this year because 2/3 of the kids were old enough to know what was going on and enjoy it.  Emma was so excited for our "feast" and eat turkey.  It all turned out so great.

We know have a month's supply of turkey that we can now eat millions of sandwiches.  Then we finished up with Pumpkin & Apple Pie (apple pie courtesy of the Dotson family, who graciously stopped by that morning and dropped it off!  What a sweet surprise!  Emma is going to draw a picture for her.  Thank you!)

Traditions are so fun as a family.  It's a time of our lives where it's crucial to get them started so it gets ingrained in the kids lives ;)

Day 24: Be Thankful

Above says it all.  I am so truly blessed.  I am so thankful for my Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ.  He has given me so much & more.
That's what i've been focusing on this month.  Listing one thankful blessing per day.  It's been so good for me to focus on those things i've been given when I do not deserve them.

I am in debt forever to Him.

Day 23: Thankful for my Health

At the beginning of the day today, I felt fine.

By the end, my throat is sore, achy and burning.
I hate being sick!

And it's only when we are sick that we realize how nice life is when we are not sick.

Majority of the year, I am in fine health.  I am grateful for that.  I am thankful that the extent of my sicknesses is a running nose, sore throat or the flu.

And definitely a tender mercy to get sick on Thanksgiving break, where I can live in my PJ's, watch Christmas movies and lounge around all day long.

So the big question for tomorrow....

Turkey or Ham?

Day 22: Thankful for Kate

I had the good fortune to take some pictures of my dd#2 as a model for a headband.  I got it at a discounted price so I was excited.
But my girls weren't!
There may or may not have been some bribery to get Kate to take these photos.
But it was worth it because I love how they turned out.
Kate is such a joy in our family.  She's definitely the silly one in the family.
She can always make me laugh with her silly faces or funny talking.
She's very sassy and very very sneaky.
But she's a big sweetheart.
I love my Katers!

Day 21: Thankful for Deep Cleaning

I wish it was natural for me to clean correctly.  It would make things much simpler.
Instead, I quick clean, which neglects the corners and other areas that most don't notice.
But then over time, your house starts to feel "blah".
And in my case, it doesn't help that my house was built in 1910.  Yes, it's been remodeled but it still has that feel.  The Layout itself screams "old".  My living room is the size of most people master bathrooms.
So on top of age, we've got size issues.
We've been in this house for 11 months.  Over those 11 months, I've collected and hoarded finds.  I admit that I have a problem.  I have a "garage sale and thrift store" problem.  So with my hoarding and lack of "a good deep cleaning", my home was beginning to feel very cramped, cluttered and overwhelming.
I've known this problem and on my own, I've tried to fix it.  But it never was meant to be.  There was no way that I alone could fix this problem since I was the one who started it. 

So when my husband, about a month ago, said we needed to do a full haul to our house, I was SO RELIEVED.  He knows my problem but he himself didn't know what to do.  He grew up where nothing was thrown out.  Nothing.  There is no reason to waste things that are still good.   Well I can see the good in that thinking.  But in our case, that was harming us.  So we got to work!

Last week, after sorting through our home, we filled our van completely with junk.  We had folded the benches down and out so we could fit everything.  Our "stuff" completely fill up the van.

Wow.  kind of embarrassing.  Kind of relieving.  Kind of a wake-up call.

A month later, and I can say our house feels so much lighter.  Now, we still have little projects to work on around the home (we are just renting) and we still have our issues that we are working on.  But this experience has opened my eyes to see what type of home I WANT.  The rental I am in now isn't my living's life sentence.  And just because it's old, doesn't mean I can't make it look new.

I was allowing my surrounding take control of my life and way of living.  I am taking back my "Dream Home" dream and how I want my home to look.  I don't have to wait until I have that home to start.  I can do it now.  DUH Lyssa!

Sometimes, you just get so used to how life is that you get stuck in a rut and don't realize what is going on around you.

I'm thankful for this "deep cleaning" experience!  And i'm glad I am getting this out, so that I can read back when my issues start creeping back up...

Day 20: Thankful for Consistency

This is really cute.  Found it from this website.

One day, I will have a cute board on my wall to announce to my family what we are having for dinner that week.  
But for now, I want to first get into the habit of menu planning.
Which i'm proud to say that I am posting another week's plan :)

So here's what we are having this week:

Wednesday: LOs

Thursday: Traditional Thanksgiving Meal. Yes, we will be having either Turkey or Ham...still haven't let go of meat completely...

Friday: LOs

Sunday: LOs

Thankful for Consistency ;)

Day 19: Thankful For Music

Don't you love when you hear a song that you instantly want to hear over and over again?

I love Music.  I love that it does that to you.  You get excited to hear something you love, or you know the words to.

I have always loved music.  Even when I was in elementary school, I would listen to the Lion King soundtrack over and over again as I went to bed.

As I got older, when I would clean my room, I would blare the music, open the window and get to work.

When I was sad or depressed, when the guy I was in love with liked someone else, I would just lie in bed, listen to sappy, depressing music really loud and just think.

Music has always been my constant companion.

Do you love music?

Let me tell you about a website that I think you will like then.

It's called Passionista Presents.

Now, this isn't an endorsement of any kind.  I don't think she even knows who I am.
But I love her site that much.

Each month, she puts together a mix of her favorite artists and songs, mostly artists that probably most don't know about.  Yet they are so good.

I leave it on on my computer as I clean my house. I wish I had them on a cd so I could listen in the car.

And at the beginning of each month, she gives you a chance to win that month's mix.  Pretty cool huh?

I am thankful that music has been part of my life.  I guess I can thank my Dad, who has a large array of records and cds that he had playing always in his study.  I guess it rubbed off on me!

Day 18: Thankful for Ruffled Sunshine

That's Jenn above.  That's her site, Ruffled Sunshine.
I'm over there today guest posting how to make this:

I'm Thankful for Jenn and letting me guest Post!
Go check her site out!

Day 17: Thankful for Quiet Moments

I experienced one of those quiet moments today.
Luke was taking a nap...of course...
the girls were downstairs playing in the toy room.

I was in the kitchen washing hand...still..
Our kitchen sink is in front of a window to the outside.  So as I scrubbed dishes, I could hear what I was doing, I could feel the quiet.  I would look outside to the beautiful fresh snow.  It was so nice.
It was one of those moments that allowed you to reflect your life and really see and enjoy it, especially the small things.  But it sure helps to live in a place like this....

I took these after dropping off Emma at Kindergarten.  Sure glad I did since when I went to pick her up, the snow was gone.

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