Archive for November, 2008

Advent Calendars

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Advent is just around the corner.  The official first day of the advent season is Sunday.  Every year our church organizes a huge event called Family Christmas Workshop.  It is a 4 hour long crafting workshop for families to attend & at end of the event everyone goes to the auditorium for presentation of some type.  This year the kids did a puppet show & drama.  Each family that attends receives a devotional that walks them through the advent season.  Hopefully it brings families together during this busy time of years, reminds them of the real meaning behind Christmas & promotes family time.

Last year I designed the devotion book and this year they asked me to do it again.  I came up with the idea of doing a day of the week calendar & a magnets that coordinates.  The magnet has 21 family activity ideas on it.  Each day, the devotion refers back to the magnet & encourages the family to do an activity together.

Elle is a bit young for the entire devotion section, but we are going to adapt it a bit for her.  Plus, she would LOVE to do nearly all of the activities.  I mean, who wouldn’t love Root Beer Float Night!?  Or video taping “I remember when” memories!?

Here is what the books & magnets ended up looking like (please ignore my sausage, I have gross hands):

I have fallen in love with some of the ideas here.  I can pretty much guarantee that I will be stealing some of her ideas.  Elle will be ready for an official advent calendar next year, plus it would look super cute on my dining room table…in fact, maybe I’ll whip one up this weekend…

Speaking of advent calendars, they are everywhere this year.  I have seen them everywhere when I’ve been Christmas shopping.  I love it…but do we really need Barbie or Bratz Advent Calendars????  Do people even know what the advent season is really about? I’m not sure Bratz & baby Jesus have much in common.


Nursery Decorations

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Remember this:

Like how they are displayed here!  I'm very classy.

Well, they are done…and they look like this:


I’m really happy with how they turned out.  Now the sign-in desk looks a little less like an airport ticket counter.  No more, “Will you be flying to LAX or dropping your baby off while you go to church?”

Chef Kelli

Friday, November 21, 2008

Ok, so we all know that I am not exactly a gourmet chef. In fact I am far from it. But lately I have been trying to step things up. You know, make new things, try different recipes, prepare food in advance. Most of the time it has worked out really well (I know, I know…you’re thinking about this. Leave me alone, I’m not perfect).

This past week I tried a new recipe (we were having dinner at Nicole’s house & I wanted her to think I was domestic) & I was really happy with it. So in honor of Thanksgiving, I thought I would share the recipe. Us blog readers got to look out for each other. Maybe you need to bring something to Grandma’s house next week? Maybe this would be the prefect addition to your mother-in-laws Thanksgiving feast? Maybe you are 500 calories short in your minimum caloric intake for the day (that’s always my problem)? Anyway, enjoy!


  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust deep dish pie (or use a Pillsbury pie crusts like I did…shhh, don’t tell Nicole)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 cups thinly sliced & peeled apples (I used half Granny Smith & half Jonathan)
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 20 caramels, halved
  • 2 tablespoons milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

To Make Taffy: In a small bowl combine brown sugar, melted butter or margarine, and 1/3 cup flour. Mix well and set aside.

To Make Apple Filling: Place apples in a large bowl. Add white sugar, 3 tablespoons flour, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Toss until all ingredients are mixed well and apples are thoroughly coated. Refrain from eating the apples like that…they will look tasty, but you need them for the pie.

Spoon half of apple filling into pastry-lined deep-dish pan. Top with half of caramels and half of taffy mixture. Repeat process with remaining apple filling, caramels and taffy mixture. Place top pastry over filling and seal well (this is very important–if edges are not sealed, caramel will leak out all over). Cut steam vents and brush top crust with milk.

Cover pie with foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil from pie and bake for another 20 to 25 minutes, until crust is golden.


Friday, November 21, 2008

Hanging 3 pictures in a straight line is difficult to do on your own.  But these needed to be hung the second they arrived in the mail.  It look quite awhile to get them straight & several extra nail holes, but they are perfect.


Eye Contact

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Lazy. This seems to be a very appropriate word to describe me lately. There have been FOUR loads of clean unfolded laundry sitting in baskets in my living room since Sunday. I have been avoiding looking directly at it, as if I don’t want to make eye contact with laundry. But the guilt is growing & today I WILL turn my gaze to the baskets.

My poor husband actually requested that I put the laundry away. He is normally pretty laid back about that kinda stuff. It’s got to be really bothering him for him to say something. He nearly fell out of bed last night when I told him that I would even iron some of his dress shirts for him today. It made me feel like a wonderful wife, let me tell ya.

Ok, so my question is…what is the one thing in your life that that you refuse to make “eye contact” with? Falling leaves in your yard? Dusty ceiling fans? The scale in the bathroom?