Thursday, December 31, 2009

oh wow!

Merry Christmas friends! And a Happy New Year!

We had a great Christmas this year! Thanks to all of our family and friends who made it wonderful. We started our Christmas on Dec. 17th when we had the Reynolds Family Christmas Party. We decided during Thanksgiving to not exchange gifts this year and to "adopt" a few kids to buy gifts for. It was awesome and I hope we continue to do that. We played a game-boys verses girls. Boys won! I made some chocolate chip cookies and the recipe is from my great grandma! It was so fun to make a family recipe for others to eat. My grandma really enjoyed them and she asked all of my mom's sisters if they remembered them. That was really fun for me!

On Dec. 22nd, Guy and I went on a Christmas date. We try to do that every year-we've seen Phantom of the Opera, The Christmas Carol, Benjamin Button at the De Lux theater, and this year we went to dinner at Brio and saw Disney's Christmas Carol at Newport. It was so much fun and dinner was delicious. We had a coupon and free movie tickets so the night was pretty inexpensive for us. We were also celebrating Guy completing his first semester! Yeah! I don't want to brag, but he made the dean's list! woo-hoo!

The next night, we went to Montgomery Inn Boathouse for our bible study dinner! That was awesome! All the girls dressed "fancy" and we enjoyed spending time together. That is also a tradition that we started a few years ago. We missed Ben and Maria though-but not that much because they were in Hawaii with their family! Whatever!

Then on Thursday, Christmas Eve, we spent all day with Guy's family! We played Monopoly and Guy destroyed all of us. Why can't monopoly money be real money??? We had a great time visiting, snacking, and opening gifts. Braylen's two favorite gifts of the night: a wagon and a wooden train set! He loves trains right now. He says "choo choo" and pulls his arm up and down like he's pulling the whistle. He's adorable. After the Christmas Eve service, a few people came back to our house for a Christmas Eve breakfast party! We served breakfast casserole, pastries, biscuits, juice and coffee. This is also a tradition that we've done since my high school days (yes over 10 years ago!!). We used to go to the Waffle House but we outgrew it and have been meeting in different homes ever since. So fun!

Christmas morning we woke up around 8:30am (thanks to Braylen for sleeping in!) and went right to opening gifts! We surprised Braylen with another little train set that goes around a small plastic track when you press the conductor. He loves it! Each time he opened a gift he would say "oh wow!" It was so cute. He had a great time opening gifts. We skipped one tradition: we usually eat cinnamon rolls for breakfast but since we were so full from all of the delicious food we've been eating, we opted out of breakfast. That afternoon we went to my parents house and ate some more food! Mom fixed a ton of snacks and it was awesome! Once Braylen woke up from his nap, we played Wii (yes, Braylen did too!), ate our turkey dinner, then opened more gifts. We are so blessed! Braylen got an awesome table and chairs for our house and I got a sweet Vera Bradley overnight bag. Can't wait to use it when we visit Jess and Vince in Charlotte!

The next night, we went to my grandparents house for the Hicks Family Christmas. There are now 19 of us so we no longer have sleep overs but we have such a great time getting together. Grandma fixed turkey in a box (my fav) and I made oatmeal cookies for the fam-which is my grandma's recipe. Braylen stayed up until 11pm that night! He is so flexible. He had too much sugar I think. He kept sneaking M&M's all night. oh well. It's the holidays!

Needless to say we had an awesome Christmas! We hope you all experienced the Love of Jesus this year and all year around! Thanks for reading! I'll be posting our family New Years goals soon so that everyone can hold us accountable. Here are a few pictures!

Here is Braylen playing Wii
Mom reading to Braylen at his new table
Wearing his new hat!
Sitting in his wagon!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Mind ya' bizness!

I love being a stay at home mom! What an incredible blessing!! However, it is pretty tough financially! So in order to help supplement our income, I have been trying to come up with a ton of "small business ideas" to make some extra cash on the side. You all know that Braylen takes wonderful naps everyday, so I usually have somewhere between 3-4 hours in the afternoon to be working on something. Currently I have been helping NKY YL a few hours each month. Which has been awesome! I am really excited to help grow the area and expand our donor list! has really inspired me to come up with my "thing." Everyone has something that they are good at. What am I good at??? Cleaning up messes, diaper changing, peeling bananas, etc. :) I tend to be really excited about something but then it just seems to die down. For instance, last month, I learned a ton of stuff about ebay. I got all of my old-giveaway clothes into a pile so that I could take pictures of them and then I wanted to try and sell them. I uploaded one NFL football zip up jacket and had no bids. Needless to say that pile of clothes is still in the basement. ha!

Here are a few things that interest me:
-helping a family friend work on her caramel apple business (she sells over 450 every holiday season)
-learning graphic design so that I could offer personalized items (birth announcements, invitations, cards, calendars, etc) at a less expensive rate. There a people who create these items for buyers, and then they email the item to the buyer who simply prints it from their home computer.
-creating DVD/CD picture slide shows (Guy and I have created 5 slide shows for weddings and birthdays in the past year)
-creating family recipe books for people. This would work by collecting recipes that have been in the family for years and creating an actual book for them to have.

Which one is your favorite?

I don't know if any of these would work.............but I should try one of them and find out. There are so many great websites where you can advertise your "goods." Esty, ebay, craigslist, facebook.

Happy Thursday everyone!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wild and crazy kid

I have received some really nice compliments about Braylen lately. Yesterday, a woman from the YMCA child watch told me that Braylen is into everything in the playroom! She said he is so curious about things. I said yea he is pretty crazy! And she said well maybe, but he is such a good boy! My little heart melted. I was so touched! I am so thankful that we are able to go to the y so that he can have more interactions with other young children. He really loves going there. And I am so thankful for my little wild man. He really is such a good boy.

We have our Christmas decorations out and I am so excited about it. Guy and I love having the tree up. For the most part, Braylen doesn't really touch the tree. I put a few Christmas stuffed animals and books in this little container under the tree and he loves to play with those things. We are looking forward to teaching him about Christmas. And of course taking him to see Santa will be great fun. :)

The holidays will be bittersweet this year because my sister and brother in law are moving to Charlotte, NC after Christmas. We will miss them so much! They are like our best friends and things will be different once they are gone. We are so excited for them to start a new journey and to see how the Lord shapes them into who he wants them to be. I am looking forward to visiting them many times.