Project 365: Days 341 – 347

Well, I was hoping to keep updating my Project 365: The 25 Days of Christmas Edition daily so that you wouldn’t have to wade through too much information at one time, but alas, here I am, putting up a whole week at one time! I will try to not spend too much time talking about the days, but you know I can be incredibly wordy!

December 7 – We made another set of Christmas card fronts! This time around, I decided to have a star theme. Josh was fabulous and made star stamps out of a potato using a cookie cutter as a model. Oh yes, you read that right, a potato. One must be creative on a budget! We used silver metallic acryllic paint to stamp our stars onto our red paper, which turned out quite festive.

Here is Ava with our potato stamp. Daddy did a great job!

December 8 – We made a fun Christmas snack to take to Ava’s preschool class the next morning.

Can you guess what it was?

Give up?

Rice Krispy Treat Wreaths! These are a great snack for preschoolers, and pretty easy and fast to make! Numerous recipes are available; I basically use 1 stick of margarine, 1 bag of mini marshmallows, and 6 cups of rice krispy cereal. (And green food coloring, of course!) I also opt to use sprinkles to decorate the wreaths instead of candy; it’s faster and then I don’t have to worry as much about choking hazards and allergies and all that fun stuff.

December 9 – We had some friends over for dinner so some other people could enjoy the decorations. Baby Ria’s family, to be exact…I tried to find the newborn pictures I posted of Baby Ria so that I could give you a linky to a picture of this adorable family, but now I can’t find them, even though I’m pretty sure I’ve posted some. ANYWAY, Josh works with Ria’s father, and I have done two photo shoots for them. Each time, they have been SO gracious and invited the whole family to come when I do the shoot, and they’ve fed us a meal! The second time, they even served us an authentic Indian meal! (They are from India.) So it really feels more like a visit than work when I do a shoot with them! And, of course, I’ve been itching to feed them a meal, too! In honor of the occassion, Ava and I made some more pumpkin chocolate chip cookies (or maybe it was butternut squash chocolate chip cookies, but I’ll never tell…) and we “Christmas-ized” them with some red and green sprinkles!

On this day, Izzy also got a sock monkey that his Daddy was given for giving blood that day. Because he only got one, we were worried that it would cause a huge altercation between our kids, but Josh really wanted Izzy to have it because it is blue, and so we took the plunge and gave it to him. And, surprisingly, it has not been a big deal to Ava. And…

He loves it!

December 10 – This was a big Chrismas-sy day, even though I didn’t take any pictures. FIRST, Ava had a special invitation to go to preschool an extra day to attend their Pajama Party/Gingerbread House making party/visit with Santa party. I have issues with the visiting with Santa part, but this blog is already getting long, so perhaps I’ll save that rabbit trail for another day. THEN, after preschool, Ava and I made our third set of card fronts! We made fingerprints with stamp pads, and then I used a black marker to connect them, and we put a little sparkle on each print, so they look like Christmas lights! (Either that or a cluster of grapes, but the goal is Christmas lights!)

THEN, thanks to some friends and Josh’s sister babysitting in shifts, Josh and I got to go on a REAL live Christmas shopping date!!! Not only did we get to do our Christmas shopping, but we got to have dinner together AND see a movie, which is a very rare occurrence indeed! Dinner was Five Guys Burgers and Fries because I had never eaten there before, and everyone who knows me knows how serious I am about cheeseburgers, and it was great! And we saw the third Narnia movie, which was also great! (I will review it on here, either at the bottom of this entry or in a future one.) And, even though it meant going to Wal-Mart after midnight, we have FINISHED our Christmas shopping, which is possibly the greatest thing of all!!!

December 11 – Saturday started with me cooking a breakfast as a thank you for my sister-in-law who drove a couple hours Friday just to babysit for a few hours, and then, after breakfast, was going to drive a couple hours back…and just to show that my cooking is not always sensational, I tried making a cheesy bacon apple strata from my Christmas cookbook…and it was not. that. good. So not that good I’m not going to post a picture, even though I did take one.

My parents spontaneously decided to join us for the day on Saturday, which was a pleasant surprise! Ava, my mom, and myself made our next set of card fronts…

(That’s a whole lot of joy!)

And then we went to help set up luminarias for our neighborhoods annual luminaria lighting. Our church volunteered to set up luminarias in the public areas (homeowners were responsible for their lots), so we spent the afternoon shovelling dirt into little paper bags and topping the dirt off with candles. There was a HUGE mound of dirt that had been trucked in, and my kids had the best hour and a half of their lives climbing on the mound and playing in the dirt! Best. diversion. ever!

Saturday evening we enjoyed some of the luminaria festivities before I came home to wash the dirt off my kids. Ava had a princess painted onto her face at one of the booths…

…and I knew it would cause grief that I would have to wash the princess off in the bathtub approximately 30 minutes after the princess was painted on, so I had the foresight to say “Let’s take a picture of the princess before we have to wash your face so we can always remember what it looked like!” 2 points for me!

December 12 – We made our fifth and LAST set of Christmas card fronts!!! For this one, I decided to let Ava live a little and free style with green paint and red, silver, and gold glitter glue. Izzy even did three cards for us! But I can’t get excited, yet, because my Christmas cards are not nearly finished! I still have 90 of them to glue on to the card blanks, and then Josh gets to cut slots to slide the picture in, and then I have to print and fold 150 newsletters, and then we get to put address labels on 150 envelopes…you see what I am saying!

We also attended the Christmas Pageant that the church we attend on Wednesday nights had. It was a huge, fancy, musical event! Izzy stayed in the nursery, but Ava sat with us and saw the 2 hour pageant…and with the help of some pieces of candy cane that Josh slipped to her, she stayed pretty still and attentive. I kept looking at her and thinking how incredibly grown up she looked sitting there watching a Christmas pageant! sniff, sniff!

December 13 (today) – I’m not exactly sure which Christmas-sy project we will do this evening (we have several to choose from), so I will fill you in later!

OK, and that leaves me with one more picture that I owe you for Project 365! One happy thing that has occurred for me today is I have finished editing all of my Christmas related shoots!!! So here is one of my favorite pictures from eight Christmas mini-shoots:

Of course, I would have to pick an “artsy” one! This is my friend, Tiffany’s, three girls…of course, the focus is the baby (I tried very hard to get a good baby picture since this is her first Christmas!) but I thought it would be fun to have her sisters’ feet in the picture…and I think I was right!

Will save my Narnia review for another day when I don’t have so many other things to write about!

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