Monday, May 22, 2017

A Santa Birthday Party

Yes, I know. Another late post. I promise this is my last one from six months ago. My next one will be why I am too busy to keep this thing updated regularly, haha.

Back in December, my mom turned 60. The year before, my dad turned 60, and I surprised him with a surprise party. Of course, I had to give my mom one too. I'm pretty sure she was half expecting one. You can't fool this woman. She's known everything I've ever done. Even before I did it. This was a hard party to pull off. I even thought about having it in about October to really fool her. What I ended up doing was having the party two weeks before her birthday and involving lots of other people and making up a lot of lies. HA! By golly, it worked!

Here's the details of the party...
My uncle cut out a wooden Santa hat, and my grandmother painted it. All the guests signed it.
Lots and lots of Santa decorations! Did you notice the Santa belts on the table? They are made from black table cloths and yellow scrapbook paper!
My Aunt made her cake. It's made out of cupcakes.
She also made this cake. My mom collects Santa Clauses and Pillsbury Doughboys. She had asked for a Doughboy cake for her birthday. Well, she got one...with a Santa hat on.
Reindeer Chow. It's just snack mix with white chocolate chips melted in it.
Santa Hats. Brownies/White Icing/Strawberries
I had a love/hate relationship with ol' Santa here. He's made out of frozen bread dough. I'm pretty sure it ranks up there with birthing kids, college math, and showing up to work at the courthouse in terms of the hardest things I've ever done. His beard wasn't exactly supposed to be covered in mozerella cheese, but after it took like three loaves of bread to form him, he was too fat and too close to the top of the oven. In other words, poor Santa got sunburned. I'm glad he at least looks like Santa. Maybe Chernobyl Santa.
M&Ms. Self explanatory.
Santa Cheeseball.  It's a cranberry cheeseball. I picked cranberry because the cranberries could be used to make Santa's hat. You can find this recipe under my recipe tab ^^.
Milk and Cookies for Santa, duh!
Our drink table included water, Christmas Punch (recipe also under recipe tab ^^), hot chocolate and coffee with all the fixings (marshmallows, peppermint, chocolate chips, etc).
And there's the birthday girl! It was a miracle we pulled it off, but it happened. So don't expect it again. LOL.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

An Anniversary Trip...

This past October, Lance and I celebrated ten years of marriage. Yep, seems a lot longer to me too. Ha. Since Lance was smart enough to let us get married during cotton picking season, so we would never have time to celebrate, we have never gone anywhere except out to eat. We honeymooned in the Smokies. It's our favorite place to go. I've always told Lance that when we got to ten years of marriage, I wanted to go back and stay in the same cabin again.
I knew we wouldn't be able to go on our actual anniversary, so I planned on a January trip. Because we also have chicken houses, we have to wait till the last minute to plan anything. Before I got to book our cabin, it burned up in the huge fire in Gatlinburg and the National Park in late November. Talk about upsetting. You can't plan something like that for ten years and not be upset.
After that, I wasn't sure where or when we would go.

So many cabins had been burned,  we decided to go a different route. I found a place called "Bearskin Lodge on the River" in Gatlinburg that looked pretty neat and told Lance about it. I always drop hints, nag, and flat out beg for stuff like this, but he usually ignores me and tells me to quit planning. This time he surprised me by booking a room! (Won't happen for another ten years).
And it wasn't just any room...it was a suite! And he surprised me with roses and chocolate! Who is this guy?!

The room had a great view of the creek, and you could even see the Gatlinburg strip around the corner.
We could also see the Ober Gatlinburg tram go by every so often.

We found our new favorite breakfast place. "Crocketts Breakfast Camp." Lance's food was served in an iron skillet, and I had the biggest cinnamon roll pancakes I have ever seen.

We rode around looking a fire damage for a while. This is all that's left of our cabin. It was called, "Journey's End." Fitting.

We went to one of our favorite places, "The Island," in Pigeon Forge and shopped till we dropped.

Or at least shopped till we found the ice cream store.

And what's a trip to the Smokies without visiting the park?

Before we had kids, we camped for a week in Cades Cove each summer. We hope to start back this year!

We walked the Gatlinburg strip. Bubba Gump's is one of our favorite places. For our first Valentine's together, I bought Lance a "Life is like a box of chocolate" box of chocolates from Bubba Gumps. Haha.

We also found a new place we like to eat at. The Cherokee Grill. We were looking for somewhere to get all fancied up and have a "date" at. We don't ever have dates. We ate a lot on this trip. Can you tell?

This was our first time going in the Hollywood Star Cars Museum in Gatlinburg. We were looking for something we hadn't done before and picked this. Me being a huge race fan, and Lance just being a man, it was great. In case you can't tell, I'm standing by Barney Fife, lol.

Oh, and Lance's outfit (and my outfit in the above picture, including the boots that are hard to see) are from Stages West in Pigeon Forge. We are obsessed with that place. I'm pretty sure we could spend an entire day there.

These shooting galleries get Lance every time. He can't pass one up!

One of my plans for our ten year anniversary trip was to recreate the picture at the top of the sky lift they always take. Well thanks to the wildfire, the only swing still standing was the one at the bottom. So, here we are, ten years later. :)

P.S. This was our first trip without kids that wasn't a farming conference!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Favorite Christmas Memories of 2016

These are some of my favorite pictures from this past Christmas!



 Christmas program at our church.
 Christmas program at school.

 Christmas Program at my parent's church.

 Seeing the Rock City lights.
 Rocky the elf with Reed and cousin Noah.



Turtle Power!

 Yes, like usual, I'm extremely late with my Halloween post. I never want to completely skip it though, so I can look back each year on what we have done.

Reed decided much earlier in the year that he wanted to be a ninja turtle for Halloween. That idea was perfect since there are four of us and four turtles.
 I'm all about saving money, so I found the kid's costumes at a consignment sale. Reed's was the whole suit and came with a purple and an orange mask. Jade's suit was just the top, which was perfect because I made the two of us into girly Ninja turtles with homemade tutus. I found my shirt at Walmart and ordered Lance's off Amazon. I used bandanas we already had for the red and blue "masks."
 Since we always have to have a trunk or treat idea, it hit me at a Young Farmers meeting where we had pizza. Ninja Turtles love pizza. I have free pizza boxes. Fill the boxes with candy like I'm giving out pizza! Talk about a cheap idea!

The kids loved it!


Friday, January 20, 2017

So Long Big Bertha

Long-time readers, remember Big Bertha? If you don't, please get acquainted here. If you do, then you also remember what she did. Remind yourself here if you need to. 


After two years of seeing her looking like this every time we were in this field, she has departed from us. Finally.















Somebody was very glad to see her go.