Friday, December 26, 2008

Had to Stop

You all know by now that I am a flower lover, so it won't surprise you that when I drove by this house I had to stop and take a picture. Look at this cute yard. The brightest, happiest mix of flowers I have ever seen. Click on the picture so you can see the cute Santa by the door, the french awnings and the gorgeous flowers!

This house is by a friend of mine. I was going there at night and again it blew me away and I had to stop. The scalloped lights with the bright round lights inside each one. How adorable is that! Who is this cutest lady? If the outside is this cute, what must the inside look like?

Friday, December 12, 2008

Outside dinner- Birthday Party

Jade, my party planning daughter, came up with a really fun idea. She got 6 couples together and made a dinner group. It is run kind of like bunko. Two times a year you host a dinner party at your house. You bring the hostess $20.00 to help out with the food and decorations. Instead of going out to dinner you get to know these other couples, be in their home and get to go to a party a month. Sounds like a great thing for these newlyweds to do. My two daughters are in the same dinner group. Jade put it together and she was the first one to start. She went all out of course with decorations, yummy homemade food, favors and games.
The next night it was my 14 year olds birthday so Jade decided she could duplicate the party she did with her friends the night before. It was quite a treat for all of us to go in her backyard where her husband had made a table for 12 out of plywood. It was covered with a beautiful tablecloth and fancy china. She put on a 4 course meal.

Spinach, candied walnuts, dried cranberries, feta cheese, pears and homemade poppyseed dressing. So good!

Butternut Squash soup that we all love. The recipe is a few posts back. She also had good bread with homemade herbed butter in the left corner.

Lemon herbed chicken, sweet potato casserole (recipe from Thanksgiving post), scalloped potatoes, and mashed potatoes. Our family loves potatoes.

Texas Sheet cake by request from the birthday girl.

Jade is a dish collector. She has several sets of china, fancy dishes and antiques. She bought herself these 12 days of Christmas dessert dishes a month ago.

I thought this idea was pure genius. They put revolving heaters under the table. We wore jackets to dinner and we stayed toasty warm.
Here is what else I wanted to pass along. This originated from my famous quilter sister Amy. She does back to back Christmas parties. She makes double the food, decorates once, and the house is basically cleaned from the night before party. She will do one friend party, a neighbor party or church party. It is a really brilliant idea.
Just like Jade's party, it was a lot of work for her friend party and just a little more work for us to come over and be treated like royalty. Thanks Jade!!! We would love this to become a family tradition:)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Tiffany & Co. Keychain

My visiting teachers are the best ever! First of all they have not and will not miss a month. I get the message every time they see me regardless if it is a lunch date, a drop by gift or a sit down in my living room visit.
What great women I have coming to see me!
This month Lori Costello and Shelly Brown stopped by to drop me off a little Christmas gift. I couldn't believe what they handed me. It was from Tiffany's! How fun it was to open such a beautiful box and find a CTR key ring inside. I feel so spoiled.
Thank you ladies!!!!!! You are amazing!!!!!!!!!! Love you!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Paying attention to our Strengths

Sorry I haven't been posting very faithfully. I have lots of things in the pipelines but no time to put them all together (picture, correct English etc.) I have been so giddy about my retreat that it is all I can think about and spend time doing.

Here is one of the assignments I am having the ladies do before they arrive. I posted it last April. Here is the link if you haven't done it yet.

This is one thing I got from taking the test. My #1 strength is creativity, ingenuity and originality. I use ingenuity constantly. I am always looking for the fastest and best way to do things. It has always been kind of a game for me to see if I can improve how things are done. I really never knew that I was unique in this area. After it was brought to my attention, I realize that this is a gift of mine.
What is funny is that this strength of mine is also one of the things that drives my husband crazy about me. When he is doing a project and I walk in I instantly see a better way. He says that he doesn't care and doesn't always want to hear that he is doing it "wrong" or not efficiently.
I think the main point of taking a test like this is for personal awareness. See what your strengths are and how you use them. Maybe you use yours too much like in my case with my husband and can tone it down a little.
You may want to look at the last one on the list, which is an area you can improve.

When you know yourself better, you can choose the best ways to use your strengths.