Monday, December 31, 2012

Favorite Things--Houston Edition

 On a recent trip to Houston,
I got a group of my friends together
for a Favorite Things party.
Thought you'd like to see some of the
Denise's favorite was Sonic Drinks. 
Aunt Terry shared some jewelry bags. 
Aunt Kim's was chocolate. 
Joyce's was body lotion.
Caitlin's was soft peppermint.
All three of these beautiful ladies are my nieces.
I had two more beautiful nieces there,
but I don't have photos.  
Sweetie's were picture display "things" and
bath oil.
I cannot remember what Larraine's
favorite thing was but thought
this was such a cute picture
I had to include it.
Donna very unselfishly
shared Hostess Twinkies.
The company had just announced
that they were closing so these
boxes were in high demand.
No, she didn't give Amber away.
Holly's favorite was a special
salad dressing.
Linda shared Puzzle Books.
Barbie's favorites were Reese's
Peanut Butter Cups.
Darlene's official favorite was
a CD but I think
this picture shows what all of our
favorite thing was that evening--
 Baby Graham, son of Stacie.

Thanks to Jenny for being
the official photographer.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

A Visit to Salida

Because both of our children
had their other families in town for 
Christmas Day, and because we had
already had our Gibson family Christmas,
David and I decided to explore
a little town in Colorado that we had heard
about called Salida.  
We left home on Christmas Day at about noon.
We fortified ourselves with lunch and lots
of car snacks because we didn't know if
there would be anything open
on Christmas evening.
We were pleasantly surprised to find
a little Italian restaurante just
a short distance from our motel
which was open on Christmas.
Does anyone know what
New England Style Dining is?
We couldn't figure it out.
We drove around town and saw the most delightful
sight.  A hill at the very end of the Main Street,
was decorated to look like a giant Christmas tree.
It was hard to get a good angle to do it
justice especially since all I had with me
to snap a picture was my Iphone.
A local Methodist church
had this unique Nativity scene all carved out
of wood.
Yes, this is real snow.
It was VERY cold.
Poor baby Jesus looks cold.
On Wednesday morning we went
to the town's famous Pancake Restaurant
that Jeremy recommended.  When
he went on Wilderness Trek when he
was in high school, they ate at the restaurant.
David delighted me with snippets
from this charming little book which
was on our table.  
I got in some antique shopping.
The only thing that I was interested in
was a very old rolling blackboard.
I had never seen one like it but
when the shop owner told me he would
be glad to pack it up and put it in my
car, I asked the price.  $2000.00
was a little more than my budget.
When I mentioned the item to a lady at a
another Antique Store in town, she said
"yes, and it's a little pricey--$900.00.
I must have looked like I had some money
to spend for him to quote me $2000."
The town was very quaint. 
These statues were very unusual.
Perhaps the funniest thing we saw was this
sign by the elevator in our motel.

Hope your Christmas Day was as full of surprises
as ours was.  

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Bird's Christmas Carol--A Very Special Book Review

My third grade teacher was
a very special lady named 
Mrs. Nadine Monroe.
Mrs. Monroe taught me
in third grade at Freeman Elementary as
well as my two brothers and sister.
I credit her with my desire to
become a teacher and with
starting my love of Children's Literature.
It was Mrs. Monroe who first
read me Charlotte's Web,
when our class returned from
the lunchroom each day.
She also read us a book called
The Bird's Christmas Carol
by Kate Douglas Wiggin.
I remember crying at the end of the
book and of borrowing Mrs.
Monroe's copy and trying to copy
the whole book down in a Big Chief tablet.

For years, I wanted my own copy of the
book, but didn't know where to find one.
Years ago, one of my fourth grade
students found a copy in her bookshelf
and told me about it
(since I had told my
students how much I loved the book.)

The Scholastic version shown above was
reissued in 1972 with a new title
Carol Bird's Christmas.
I now own four copies so that
I'll never be without one again.
The copy above is also
a Scholastic version published
in 1972.
This beautiful collector's edition
(I must not be the only one who remembers
this book with fondness) was reissued
in 2001 by Welcome Books and
has gorgeous illustrations.

This is the book that I read from
this Christmas Eve, the first time
I had read the book in quite a while.
My brother, Lynn, found it
for me.  The copyright on this book
is 1929 by Houghton Mifflin Company.

The original was published in 1886 but
this 1929 version is just as special
to me as if I had an original.

I leave you with a quote from
this precious little gem of a book

"And pray a gladsome Christmas
For all your fellow-men;
Carol, brothers, carol,
Christmas Day again."

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Merry Christmas--2012

My custom for the past few
years has been to create
a Christmas ABC post
for our annual Christmas "letter".
This year, I decided to go into the 
picture archives and just
randomly pull some of
my favorite Christmas pictures 
and memories.  I decided that
since the Christmas ABC's
had 26 pictures representing
the 26 letters, I could not exceed that number.
This post is picture intensive.  I 
have learned that creating a blog
is as much for the writer and for the
reader.  So, if you choose to not look
at all the photos, I will never know,
and will certainly not be offended.
If you stop here, just know
that David and I wish you a 


For the brave among you, read on.

Our first Christmas with a grandchild. 
It's hard to believe that this
little guy is almost 6
and is in Kindergarten.
I bought this Santa at Tease Me Hair Salon.
I love taking it out every year.
For many years, I had a Christmas tree forest.
It is one of the few things I regret
"weeding out" when we moved.
David taught the young adult class
at Southeast Church of Christ for
many years and we hosted an annual
brunch for "our" kids.
Miss those sweet faces.
Our stocking selection has grown as
we have added more grandchildren.
Mandy and Jeremy.  A favorite shot. 
Classic Kelly.  Love this photo.
Much like Poppy used to do to Jeremy,
Aunt Kelly has stolen Caleb's special blanket.
I love baking with my 3 little guys.
Our first Christmas in Colorado at our townhouse.  
You have to wash your hands before you start the
Christmas baking.
What a fun Christmas all four
of our kids were expectantly
waiting for their two little guys.
It's hard to believe they are 2 1/2
years old now.
A favorite "self-timed" Christmas photo.
Yes, that's Caleb talking to Elmo.
Now his brother loves Elmo and he's into
Super Heroes.
Sweetie and Poppy would always
go from house to house to their
4 children on Christmas Day.  What
fun memories!
Last Christmas, we visited Harding for
our nephew Ryan's wedding to
his sweet bride Caitlin.  
These 3 little guys truly love each other.
I can't wait to see how they
will react to the little girl
Kelly and Adrian are expecting in April.
We had our Christmas on December 1st this year.
What a lot of fun!!!
This creation, made by Caleb and Aaron will
certainly become a Christmas heirloom.  
See the Santa in Aaron's hand?
It cost Nana $1 at the Dollar store
and was his favorite present.
I didn't get a photo of this,
but wish you could have seen David
chowing down on all the
goodies in his stocking.
He had a field day!
If you have made it this far,
you know that David and I count it
all joy to have such a precious family
close to us here in Colorado Springs.

We pray for you
JOY as you enjoy
this special season of the year.