Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It's My Party!!

Alright, the grand event finally came and went. Kellen turned one last Sunday, and as a first time mommy I think we did a pretty good job. I REFUSED to go overboard and waste money on things he would not remember (tons of decorations, matching plates, napkins etc) it was simple and fun. We ate burgers, had some chips, cake and other yummy desserts and celebrated the baby boys first birthday. Below are some pictures from the event. If you missed it, you missed some pretty great times. Thanks to everyone that came to make his day special.
Home made cake made by mommy. Aunt Cassie let me borrow these little pans that made the three pieces to the cake.
Kellen woke up from his nap just as the festivities were about to begin, perfect timing since he would only get one nap for the day.
Daddy BBQ'd all the burgers, they were yummy.
Jeff and Nolan hung out with Colin outside while he cooked.
John, Tymon and Brittani were in attendance at the festivities.
OK, so he opened one gift a little early. It wasn't wrapped so he was a little ahead of us. Grandpa got him a bike and a helmet. He LOVES it even though he can't reach the pedals yet. We put on the helmet and ride him to the mail box every day. Thanks to Grandpa's handy dandy handle that he attached to the back of it!
Here is the helmet.
Aunt Renee and her friend Mike got Kellen a remote control car!! It is SO cool!
Jeff and Ashley bought him this really cool Caterpillar that talks and sings. He likes to push the buttons and watch the ears light up.
Bill and Jeannine (though unable to attend, we hope Grandpa Knight is doing better) gave him a walker to help him practice walking (still a crawler) and when he has mastered walking he can ride on it instead!
Uncle Tymon and Aunt Brittani (and Baby Olivia) got him a sweat outfit from Old Navy, our favorite store!
Our super cool, (and super normal, YAY) neighbor, Mike, gave Kellen this cool puppy dog toy! It sings and talks and teaches him all about body parts!
Great Grandma and Grandpa McDonough bought him this SUPER CUTE Adidas sweat outfit! And they gave him a savings bond! Kellen loves to save!
Uncle John, Aunt Cassie and Cousin Nolan bought him some golf clubs (plastic :=) and a really soft Mickey Mouse! He likes the clubs, and even likes to share!
Uncle Chad and his friend Julia arrived a little later and brought a new Harley with them!! Kellen tries to scoot around in it and LOVES to be pushed around the living room really fast on it!
OK, so the cake mess begins. He was slightly hesitant at first to touch it, but then once he tasted it, it didn't take long!
Drinking some milk to wash it down.
Time to get cleaned up! Yikes! He is covered from head to toe!
One last shot before Grandpa put him in the sink.

Here is a short video, the messiest part was not taped... it came later.
Thanks to Aunt Cassie he was sparkly clean in a flash! The poor sink on the other hand needed some additional TLC. There was a ring in the tub once we got him out! All in all a successful first birthday! We had so much fun! Thanks to everyone that came! Those that couldn't attend, you missed out. BUT you have the blog to reminisce!

Monday, December 14, 2009

I'm Turing ONE!!

Friday, we took pictures for our Christmas card and for Kellen's 1st birthday. Elle Bee Photography came to our home to capture the Christmas moments. Our Christmas tree has been up since the day after Thanksgiving, and our home is filled with so many Christmas decorations (see earlier blog for pictures). I don't even have to turn the heater on, the tree keeps our house warm when it's all lit! As usual, we were so pleased with how the pictures turned out, and so thankful that Lauren was able to take them. Here they are!

Getting ready for our family photos, we weren't all ready to look at the camera! Ha ha!

OK, now we are...

Daddy and Kellen hanging out

This is one of my favorites... such a great shot.

Showing his boyish charm... what a sweety!

Lauren did something cool with this picture, I love how the background of the tree stands out.

Something about his look in this picture made it another one of my favorites. I bought a 5 x 7 of it.

This is the first professional picture Colin and I have taken together since we were dating (that I can remember). We are so blessed by Lauren and her talents... if you don't have a family photographer, I HIGHLY recommend her. Merry CHRISTmas Everyone!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Women's Christmas Brunch

Every year Grandma Bardsley invites me to her church for their annual Christmas brunch, I call it the "Christmas Kick Off." Grandma Sue attends Mariner's Church in Irvine, it is similar to my church, Sandals, in that it started very humbly and had grown to be known as a pretty amazing church.
The brunch consists of all the ladies in their church getting together with friends and family, eating brunch, singing worship songs and listening to a key-note speaker. This year it was really amazing. The speakers name was Sheila Walsh. An author, speaker, singer and former 700 club co-host. She shared with us her testimony and how God has changed her life and brought her to where she is right. Not only was she funny, and well spoken, she had an amazing singing voice! She has a book called, "Let Go: Live Free of the Burdens All Women Know." I bought one for my mom for Christmas. We had a great morning of catching up with the ladies and worshiping God. Here are some photos of the festivities. Our tradition is to take photos in front of the Christmas tree after the Brunch is over.
This is a photo of Grandma Sue, Shelley and I by the tree.
This is a photo of the room as you walk in. My camera does not take panoramic photos, there are still more ladies to the left and right of the room. It is quite the event.
The lady to the right is Norma Hanson, Grandma Sue's neighbor. Grandma and Norma have been neighbors for fourty years! They walk together in the mornings to keep fit, they are both in great shape. Jill is Norma's daughter. Jill and Shelley grew up together and Jill attended Westmont College, the school that Colin attended. Jill and her husband Ken met at Westmont and Colin heard so many stories over the years and had visited several times and knew that is where he was supposed to go to college. Jill and Norma are amazing Christian women.
What a day! What an event! What a year!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

My New Hat

We went to Target yesterday afternoon, after a cold morning run. I decided that maybe if I bought Kellen a warm hat and gloves that he wouldn't be as cold while out and about during the winter time. He usually hates hats, or just likes throwing things and ripping them off his head, so I knew I would need to outsmart him. Make it soft, and have some sort of tie so that he can't take it off!! Here are some cute photos of him wearing his new hat.



Thursday, December 3, 2009

Power out... but we can still have fun!

Power outage... from Mindie Gilliland on Vimeo.

So the Power went out last night for about 30 minutes, in the middle of dinner! Thankfully I had a candle lit on the bar so that it wasn't pitch black in our house when it went out. I lit a few other candles so we could see our food and then Colin gave Kellen a flash light to play with.
He was trying to figure out where the light was coming from.
He liked playing with the flash light and it looked pretty funny when he put the light end in his mouth. My kid is so much fun!

Monday, November 30, 2009

The other day after Kellen's afternoon nap, we brought him downstairs after we pulled down the Christmas tree and the Christmas decorations. We made sure to set up the Christmas tree while he was napping so that there would not be any baby drama. Below is a short video of the first time that he saw the Christmas tree lit up.

OOOHHH from Mindie Gilliland on Vimeo.

Here are a few other pictures of the house, once it was finished being decorated. I'm sure there will be more to come later, I usually end up adding more as the month progresses! This is a tissue box that my mom made me a few years ago. The tissues come out of the chimney and it looks like little smoke. It sits in the bathroom.
As you walk up the stairs there is some greens! I added white Christmas lights last year, but I am not sure if I want to do that this year.
My humble little dinning room table with the home made place settings that Grandma McDonough made me, with the napkin holder my mom gave me, and all the pieces to the calendar that is below... the count down calendar.
Another home made item. The "Count Down" Calendar was also made by my Grandma McDonough and Kellen and I will count down the days to my birthday, his birthday and Jesus' birthday! The Santa door knob decor is from my mom... Kellen likes to touch the beard.
These are the stockings that my Grandma McDonough made. The far left is Kellen's, the middle is Colin's and my stocking (the oldest) is on the right. They are hanging (by hooks) on the fireplace that we never use because they are fake logs and you have to turn the gas on to get a little flame without actual heat! One day we will have a house with a real fire place so we can enjoy the flame and the heat without adding to the gas bill.
This is the wreath that I made for the front door. The door needs to be repainted, who knows if we are allowed to do that or if the HOA people have to do it. I bought all the parts to it on sale at Joann Fabrics.
Finally, the grand finale! The Christmas tree. We broke down a few years ago and bought a fake one at Costco. The branches really do look real! Plus, no bugs, dirt tree trimmings to pick up and the lights stay on the tree; you plug them in (after putting the 3 pieces together) and instant beautiful. Just add ornaments and ribbon if you wish. We buy the Christmas tree candles at Bath and Body Works and there isn't much to miss. (Unless you like the dirt and bugs...)

***Still to come, the Dicken's Village! I have to wait until the weekend for Colin to help me out by drilling holes in the back of the cabinet so the cords don't hang for Kellen to play with. I will add those pictures once it is all done. MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Crazy Cooking Ladies

This is my second time being involved in the "Cooking Co-Op." Well, that is what I call it. Here is the scoop:
So six ladies get together, we each get a grocery list, we have "homework- AKA- items to prep before the big cooking fest," and then we all get together to put 20 meals that can serve 4 to 6 people per meal into freezer bags, Tupperware and cooking dishes.
This is some of the food that we bring, buy, and/or borrow for the big event. Then, we split up and start prepping meals.

Here, Liz is rolling a bunch of meat balls. Haven't had this one yet, but you can use them for spaghetti or sandwiches, etc.
We even recruited some of the kids to help do small tasks like opening cans and separating jars. Hannah was such a good helper.
We started some of the meals, Nesha and I on the left were working on the Pesto chicken (OMG it was so good!!!) Angel was prepping one of the yummy soups. I haven't had it yet, but I'm sure it will be fantastic!
After hour 2 miles decided to order the hard working ladies some pizza for dinner. What a great guy!
We get into a pretty good rhythm and there's just no stopping us!
This time it took us a little less than 6 hours, mainly because we stopped for a dinner break, and had some new meals that we were not completely sure about. However, at the end of the day, each lady only had to dish out 132 bucks for 20 meals!! HOW AMAZING IS THAT!?! We have so much food, we usually only have to get together every other month. My freezer is loaded! And it is so great to have meals prepped that you know are going to taste good, and won't take as long to make, and didn't cost and arm and a leg, and thigh etc... :)
I definitely recommend signing up to do this cooking group stuff, or talk to the master, (Heidi Thompson) and start your own group! It was so much fun, and so cheap!!