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!!

Friday, November 20, 2009


Can you believe it? He is already eleven months old! I can't believe how fast the time has flown by. Next thing you know he will be driving, registering to vote and heading off to college! Make it stop! Ok, so maybe he isn't growing THAT fast, but I am definitely having the best time enjoying my little guy every day. I am so glad that God has allowed me to be home with him. We have big and small adventures and he is the greatest! (behind daddy of course).

If we see you within the next few days, wish the baby boy Happy 11 Months! (Even though he will have NO idea what you are talking about). Ha ha!

Happy Birthday Little Man! I love you!


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sandals Church

Sandals Church Building Announcement from sandals church on Vimeo.

It is a very important time in the church I have called home for the last ten years. We finally have found a building that we can call home. Like all buildings, it ain't cheap! Sandals needs to raise over four million dollars to move.

Sandals has asked for its members to pray about a faith commitment over the course of the next two years to help us own this building. Sandals has been a part of every major event in my families life. Pastor Matt married Colin and I, Colin was baptized at Sandals, Kellen was welcomed upon his birth, and was dedicated at Sandals. Colin and I have prayed and we have decided to faithfully commit to giving to our church. The funny thing is, it is not about a building. My perspective has been challenged and has changed over the last few months. Especially now that we have a child. This is a place where people are going to come to know that Jesus loves them, for the the first time in their lives. A place where my son will one day be challenged to take up his cross. THAT alone is why Colin and I will sacrifice all the money in the world to make this building a reality. Houses, cars, STUFF will one day be gone, but knowing that my son will one day spend eternity in heaven with His creator because a church stepped up when they were called to sacrifice is worth it.

Unfortunately, we don't have all the money in the world, but we will give with a cheerful heart as much as God will allow us. Please watch the video above and if you call Sandals Church your home, please pray about what God is calling you to do. If you are not a member of Sandals Church, and you still feel called to give, by all means please do so! Finally, please keep Sandals Church in your prayers, God is faithful!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Today my nephew Nolan came over for a visit and we had a great time. After we had lunch, danced in the living room with Uncle Colin and Cousin Kellen, we started to watch Cars, and Kellen had a bath and a nap. The little guy has Roseola... a rash that thankfully doesn't itch or hurt him, but it is crappy none-the-less.

SO- while Kellen was napping and Colin was out at a meeting with his soccer coaches, Nolan and I decided to make some cookies!!

First, we had to put on our proper attire. Nolan chose the blue one, and I had on the white one. Then, Nolan helped me pour all the ingredients into the bowls and mix it together.

Cookies! from Mindie Gilliland on Vimeo.

Then of course, we had to taste it to make sure that it was ready to go into the oven. Nolan, enjoyed eating a small amount of dough (with wheat flour instead of white) before we rolled it onto the dishes.
Then, he helped me put them into the oven. After posing for a picture first!

Then, Nolan helped me supervise the cooking process... our oven is not hot, so he can touch it.

Then, he posed for a picture with the help of Uncle Colin with his just ready to eat cookie. As soon as I gave him permission, he stuffed it in his mouth! It was so funny. I said, "Nolan, ok you can eat it." And he said, "OK," with it pretty much in his mouth already!

You should have seen the chocolate all over his face, while he wasn't stuffing it in his mouth! Good times~

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween from our Little Lion

Ok, so this was obviously our first year trick or treating and Kellen got to wear his cute lion costume to three different costume parties. First, we headed to Trunk or Treat at Sandals Church on Friday evening with cousin Nolan and auntie Cassie. Then, our bud Nathaniel had a birthday party Saturday, and then the Lopez's invited us to their home to trick or treat and have dinner. Here are some pictures from some of the events: Mr. Lion crawling his way around the Shovlowsky's playrooom. He was slipping all over the place trying to get a grip on the slick wood floors. We took so many pictures of him!Our gracious Halloween host, Sara Lopez, made the cutest cup cakes with ghost faces and hershey kisses. They were not only cute to look at but yummy to taste!

Do you see the scary spiders on the plate? The Veggies were arranged to look like little spiders inside the dip. Another yummy treat!

What drink would be complete without sour worms crawling around the outside of the bowl. A few actually fell in and added some crazy flavors to the limeade.

The lion costume gave him a little heat rash the first night, so we were going to have him dress up as a track star, but it was way too cold outside. So, he sucked it up and put the costume on again. He didnt' seem to mind that much.

Here he is with half his costume on. It was so cute watching him crawl around with big ol' feet and a normal upper body!

The jersey was a little big (there were shorts tucked into his diaper underneath because they were falling down to his ankles). He kept the track outfit on under his lion costume and we stripped him back down after he went trick or treating.

Here he is in the wagon, while daddy pushed him from house to house to get candy. I think he is sitting on his candy bucket at this point, he kept slipping off of the back seat into the middle and dumping the candy over. He was such a good boy, and daddy was the best pulling him around in the wagon. It was a successful first halloween. Hope it was happy for everyone!!