Monday, December 26, 2011

A great way to end - Day 25 - 25 Days of Christmas

It was great waking up and watching the kids open their gifts. They got what they asked for and even a few extra things. We spent the rest of the day with Justin's family, good food and lots of family time is a great way to end Christmas. I'm ending this with the picture my husband and I took when we made it home.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Family Time - Day 24 - 25 Days of Christmas

My mom, my brother and his family all came to our house to spend the day.  The kids got to open gifts from my mom and brother.  It was a really nice relaxing Christmas Eve.

I fixed a nice little spread of snack foods.....


We celebrated Izaiah's birthday, even thought it's technically not until the 26th...


I got to give my mom her gift I made her...

Friday, December 23, 2011

My Husband - Day 23 - 25 Days of Christmas

He made Christmas special for me again....
it's when he proposed to me.

When I met Justin I was just back on my feet from a divorce. I had just built a new house all my own, my kids were adjusting well, you could say I was pretty happy alone. But I am not a person that likes to be alone but I knew I needed that time to re-adjust and re-claim myself and my independence. I had it in my mind that I was not going to just settle for anyone, I told myself I would know when the right person came along.

Sure enough it wasn't too long before I met Justin, it was November of 2005. We talked on the phone here and there, it was not a love at first site type situation, we actually stopped talking for a while and then out of the blue we decided to go out. After meeting him in person the bond got stronger, I loved that he was a great father, I loved that his family was so important to him, I loved that god and church was important, I loved that he was a bit old fashioned.

He became a powerful part of my life, a part that made me feel good about myself because he loved me so much. Christmas 2008 was our first Christmas together in our new house, we had just built it earlier in the year and I was really looking forward to the holidays. We had talked about marriage but we both knew there wasn't a rush and that it would happen eventually. He surprised me with the most beautiful ring, he had hung it on an ornament on the tree. I felt so special, yes I cried, lol, but for him to go out of his way o make it special for me just meant that much more. Yeah we could have just bough rings and said "We're getting married" but this was better, it was like the stories you see in the movies. A nice thought out proposal and even though it was not a big dramatic scene it was simple, special and intimate between us.

So, to me Christmas is special for many reasons, he being one of the biggest for me.

When we got married he wanted a nice wedding and I can't lie once I got into the whole planning process I was excited to have one too. During the planning his big concern was the music, he had to have say in all of our music, I gave him the reins I let him choose the songs. There is one song that he chose and every time I hear it, I get lost in the words, it even brings me to tear up. Because he chose this song, I feel like the words are coming from him each and every time I hear it and it truly makes me feel so blessed that he loves me the way he does.

Don't get me wrong, we do not have a perfect marriage, we have our ups and downs and it's hard having a blended family with different discipline ways, we were raised differently and I can respect and appreciate that. He was raised in a definitely southern family, strong in every sense of the word family, his mom and dad are still together and very much happy. It's wasn't just his mom and his dad it's a closeness he share with his aunt, grandmother, grandfather, sister, nephews and cousins, they see each other every Sunday for family time, it's simply amazing the closeness they all have.

Now me on the other hand, I came from a family that consisted of my mom and my brother, my mom raised us. She is an amazing woman, she was my father and my mother. We did have the backing of her parents but as we got older we seem to drift away. I'm not really close with any of my aunts or uncles. We basically had holidays, there were not a lot of lets just all have a great time together as family especially after my grandparents died. Don't get wrong my aunts, uncles and cousins are important and I love them all dearly but it's just not a close family, we don't all stick together, lol.

When our worlds collided I saw what he had and I wanted that his family has made me feel so welcome and I love them all. We may disagree with somethings but I know he means well and I try to understand where he came from, I am a free spirit and I'm stubborn, I know that but there are somethings we have to just let ride and let time work through it for us.

Okay enough with the history, lets get into some pictures. I took this picture of my husband last weekend while at dinner. I love when he wears a hat, not sure why I just do. And below that you'll see a picture of my ring that he had hanging on the tree that Christmas when he proposed, I love my ring.




And remember that song he chose for our first dance at our wedding, well I couldn't talk about it and not post the words for you to read:

Someone by Musiq Soulchild

I never wanted a woman that wanted me for my name or material things, see
I always hoped for a woman that's so sure emotionally secure with spiritual faith

A woman that I can trust with all of my secrets And even listen to all of my issues A woman who never judge me or how I was She deals with me strictly through love

Someone who will put up with the things, loving me can bring And still be there to see us through Someone who would put up with the strange and complicated things
'Cause I would do the same for her too

Someone who I can be real with, ain't gotta be perfect 'Cause loving one another is all that matters It's not hard to explain, so believe me when I say That I found all of that in you

All that I hope for a friendship that's so pure A girl I can talk to 'bout whatever's on my heart A woman that needs me, that trust and believes me
That won't take my kindness as some kind of weakness

A woman who bares her soul, who's willing to let go That wants me to lead her but knows how to take control And when I am feeling down 'cause things are going wrong

She fills me up, make me feel strong

Someone who will put up with the things, loving me can bring And still be there to see us through Someone who would put up with the strange and complicated things 'Cause I would do the same for her too

Someone who I can be real with, ain't gotta be perfect 'Cause loving one another is all that matters It's not hard to explain, so believe me when I say That I found all of that in you

You are that someone who loves me through all my imperfections You know my heart is filled with nothing but good intentions You are the one that told me long as we got us, nothing matters You are the one that sees the joy through the pain

You are my light through the rain, here and now Girl I am saying, it's you, you're my heart, it's you You're that someone I can truly say that I'll never find Another love like you

Someone who will put up with the things, loving me can bring And still be there to see us through Someone who would put up with the strange and complicated things 'Cause I would do the same for her too

Someone who I can be real with, ain't gotta be perfect 'Cause loving one another is all that matters It's not hard to explain, so believe me when I say That I found all of that in you

Someone who will put up with the things, loving me can bring And still be there to see us through Someone who would put up with the strange and complicated things 'Cause I would do the same for her too

Someone who I can be real with, ain't gotta be perfect 'Cause loving one another is all that matters It's not hard to explain, so believe me when I say That I found all of that in you

Thursday, December 22, 2011

He got an early gift too! - Day 22 - 25 Days of Christmas

So, I'm not the only one around here getting a gift early. My husband knew he was getting the new iPhone 4s, so like he said what's the point of me wrapping it. Lol

It's so not fair, I want one too!!!! I have been chatting with Siri all night. It's really amazing all the crap she knows.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Cup of Happy - Day 21 - 25 Days of Christmas

I didn't take a picture of the yummy starbucks drink that I love so much, but I had taken a picture a while ago and decided tonight I wanted to put it on a scrapbook page, so today I took a picture of the page I finished, lol.  I liked the way it turned out and I was able to use some items from my actual cups.  Yes I do save silly stuff...

The Good Stuff - White Chocolate Mocha





I also started working on my Project Life book for 2012, I didn't finish last year and I have a new approach for this year so I'm hoping I can follow through this time.

Here is a look at the first part of my title page.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Our Traditional Early Christmas Gifts - Day 20 - 25 Days of Christmas

A little background on myself and my husband, we seem to give each other gifts early...I think last year was the only year that we made it to Christmas day.  BUT we had already showed each other the gifts we got each other prior, but we wrapped them for the sake of Christmas morning, for all intensive purposes.

I don't know why we do it, I cannot hold water when it comes to a gift and it never fails I can pretty much always guess what some one is giving me.  My brother is the same way, his wife calls us both gift ninjas.

Well this year my husband had to have a gift for me delivered to, guess who, me...{insert evil laugh here}.  So the FedEx package was delivered and I could not help myself, see I already know what it was, but I just had to open it.  It was sitting there calling my name...."April, open me, you know you want to, Justin won't find out, try me out"  And I cracked, I ripped open the FedEx package and eagerly opened my gift and to my surprise (not really) it was my blue tooth keyboard and case for my ipad.  I quickly read the directions, synced my iPad, took it for a quick spin and then placed all back in the box and even slid it back into the Fedex package.  I felt satisfied but then I was mad because I wanted it, how dare he tease me with a gift and not let me have it. lol

Here is text messages back and forth...




Okay so I guess I should show you my gift, right?  I really works great and I am so happy to have it.  Oh, wait how would I know that, it's a Christmas gift and Christmas isn't even here yet........DUH! I got it early, there was no sense in wrapping it up, I mean why waste the paper. :)




My screen looks really dirty in this picture, oops, guess I should have cleaned that first, good thing I don't do product photography, I would suck.










Sunday, December 18, 2011

Presents & Wrapping - Day 17 & Day 18 - 25 Days of Christmas

I spent the weekend sorting the gifts and wrapping presents.....OMG way too many.  It worked out the kids have 7 gifts each (my OCD insures they have the exact same amount to open) so times that by 4 kids and that means I had to wrap 28 gifts...ugh! Lets just say I am glad this weekend is over. 

Day 17 - The Preparation

I printed my labels, cut them and I just had to round the corners on them this year, lol.  Yes it is blurry I shot at 1.8 I wanted to insure you couldn't tell what the gifts actually were in case my kids look.  You can sort of make out my nephew's gift but that's okay.  Oh and you can see yesterday was wash our sheets day, lol, please excuse the bare mattress. 


Day 18 - Finished

I have a huge mess in our room, the trash and pieces of corners are all over my floor, but the gifts are wrapped and I can officially say I am done, thank goodness.




Friday, December 16, 2011

Wrapping Paper Color Scheme - Day 16 - 25 Days of Christmas

In keeping with my colors this year I'm using silver patterned wrapping paper with pink, green, blue and red bows.

So what else for today but a picture of that...

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Ugly Christmas Sweater - Day 15 - 25 Days of Christmas

Today was our annual Christmas luncheon and our 2nd annual ugly Christmas sweater contest.

Here's the one I wore...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Camera Hog, I mean Dog! - Day 14 - 25 Days of Christmas

Oh...Hi! < ---That is exactly what he looks like he is thinking.

I was trying to get a nice blurry picture of our tree today but some one thought he could be a camera hog.  None other than Mr. Kaos....he is not camera shy...in fact he has been know to go sit himself on my backdrops when am getting set up.
See the evidence below!

Hi !


Case in point -
I was just setting up and here he comes.


The nerve of him....

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Mini Inside Wreaths - Day 13 - 25 Days of Christmas

My picture today is just a little peak at the two mini wreaths I made for inside my house.

PEACE & NOEL

Monday, December 12, 2011

Catching Up - Day 10, 11 & 12 - 25 Days of Christmas

Okay so the weekend had me busy, I went to a Christmas party with my mom, we took family pictures on Sunday (don't get me started on that).  I was just so busy I never sat down to edit any thing.  I was doing so good too.  Oh well at least I took the pictures, that is an accomplishment in it's self.

Day 10 - Tiffany, My Mom & Me - Headed to the KBR Christmas Party



Day 11 - The Whole Family 

**Quote from my brother about our big family picture " Tiffany and I look like the cracker neighbors that just jumped in the picture" LOL...I love my brother.

And when we did the picture of just the grand kids, my sister-in-law sang "one of these are not like the others...."  My little nephew is the one not of mixed race...


Day 12 - Our Christmas Tree
I'm really happy with how it looks this year, I love the new colors I chose.





Saturday, December 10, 2011

My Favorite Ornament - Day 9 - 25 Days of Christmas

If you know me you know I love Frogs, my favorite ornament is the one my son Izaiah got me. It's a round fat frog, I call butterball.

So that's my picture for today...

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Door Wreath - Day 8 - 25 Days of Christmas

Today's picture is my DIY Wreath...

After looking at all the beautiful wreath inspiration on Pinterest, I was inspired to make my first door wreath.  I wanted to spice things up this year and have a really fun color palette.  I'm doing green, red, blue and pops of pink.  As my husband said "Pink is not a Christmas color" but I beg to differ I think any color could be a Christmas color if you want it to and I wanted Pink. lol  I'm really happy how all of my decor is coming together, I've got more to finish and show later...so stay tuned.

It was really simple, I took a dollar store wreath and tied different colored tulle around it. I then took a bag of dollar store ornament ball garland and spray painted it silver. (They only had them in these dark colors and as you can see that would not have matched my color scheme this year.)  I also bought a dollar store bell, it was green, they didn't have silver, so I had to spray paint that as well.  The Merry Christmas sign was, you guessed it a dollar at the dollar store.  The ribbon I already had and the tulle was half off at Hobby Lobby a while back.  So this cost me about $10 give or take.







Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Just the girls - Day 7 - 25 Days of Christmas

Today was the Volleyball banquet for my girls....it was supposed to be a "dressy" occassion and since we were all dressed pretty I figured it would be a great chance for a mom and daughters picture. 

So today's picture is of me and my girls... (oh and keep scrolling down you can see more of my girls)

I'm not sure why Sonja does this silly face it's her weird smile....she is such a beautiful girl but she says she hates her smile.  She is still beautiful even if she gives this goofy half smile.


 And this one here, oh my she just looks so grown but she's only 17...everyone things she looks just like me, hmmmm I don't know.


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Almaguer Family Session - Houston Family Photography

I have photographed this family from maternity session, to newborn, to cake smash and now another family session.....an I'm looking forward to another maternity session next year. I acutally used to work with the mom, I used to be her boss and she didn't like me very much, lol.  We're great friends now and I love photographing her beautiful family.