Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Twas the Week Before We Left For Detroit…

So, for those of you who know me well, I tend to over commit at times. Crazy, right? The thing is, I have fun doing all the things I over commit to. Such a conundrum! What made this year a little more challenging was our decision to drive to Detroit for Christmas. It had been over 2 years since we’d seen my sister and her family, and I just wasn’t willing to wait any longer. Stay tuned for a post on our trip and visit. We left here on 12/18, so I had to get all my December tasks done before that! To add further complication, James spoke at our church’s youth retreat on 12/16-17, and we went with him! So, essentially I had to finish my tasks before THAT!

Christmas Eve Pajamas

One of our family’s Christmas traditions is opening one gift on Christmas Eve that is our pajamas to be worn on Christmas day. Usually we don’t get matching since it’s hard to find pajamas that are the same in all of our different sizes. Now that I’m more comfortable with my sewing machine, I decided it would be fun to make the pajama pants this year. THEN, I realized we’d be together with Jenn and her fam and thought how cute it would be for all of the little cousins to be matching. And I couldn’t leave out Dave and Jenn, too, so I ended up making 11 pair of pajama pants. (I’m nuts, I know.) I finished the pants the week before my crazy week, but I was wanting to add something to the shirts (all solid red and white that we just bought) to tie them all together. I added the embroidery to the kids shirts (isn’t that snowman pattern cute?) and the initials to the adults. Here was the finished product before we left. Stay tuned for photos of everyone wearing them in my Christmas Day post.

P1010513 All 11 pair!

P1010515 Close-up of the kids’ embroidery. There’s an eyes and nose of a snowman, and the kids’ names are the mouth

P1010517The adult versions. I also put ruffles on the bottom of the girl ones to make them a little more girly.

Teacher/Staff Gifts

Again, since I have the resources and am enjoying my sewing room so much, I like to make personalized gifts for the staff/teacher gifts if I can. This year, I found a cute tutorial for fabric bookmarks and decided to give that a try for the girls’ teachers and the staff at our church that James works with. Everything was going great until I realized I’d made a mistake about 75% through the first batch (of 15!) and would have to start over. Shoot! I did, though, and managed to still get them finished in time – barely!


I made boy ones with the tassel and flowers for all the ladies. People seemed to like them!

P1010489 Here’s the note that went on the teacher ones from the girls (including all the teacher’s Ellie interacts with at her public school).

Gift Wrapping

Then of course there was the actual wrapping of presents to be done! :) James and I did that around 10pm the day before we left. Whew! But, we got it done!

Emma’s Happy Birthday Jesus Party

As if all of that weren’t enough, I volunteered to make the cake for Emma’s Happy Birthday Jesus party at her school. This is where I admit I may have gone a bit overboard. :) BUT, I did a pretty simple cake trying to remind myself that 3 year olds aren’t my toughest critics. Here are some photos from the party including the cake:


P1010495  Working on a cute ornament craft

P1010500 Doing a little Christmas Story play where they ALL did EXACTLY what they were supposed to – HA!

Woodbury Visit

Our good friends the Woodbury’s have been living in London for the last year and a half. We ALWAYS make time to see them when they’re here in town, and they were free on Thursday afternoon. As soon as Emma’s party was over, we jetted home to spend time with them. James and Ellie joined us as soon as she was out of school. As always, it was so great to see them!

P1010502 Ellie and Brylie reconnected as if they hadn’t spent any time apart.

P1010505 How cute are they?!

P1010508 Thanks to Ellie for being our photographer on this one. :)

P1010511 All the kids (and be impressed that they’re all generally looking at the camera and pleasant looking!)

P1010512 Emma: “I need some help!” LOL – Yes you do, child….

James spoke at church the Sunday before we left and then at the youth retreat (3 times) the Friday and Saturday before we left, so he spent much of those two weeks prepping for all of that. The kids did great letting me spend time in my sewing room to make this all happen. Most of it happened during nap time and after bedtime, though. In addition to all of that, I also went to Ellie’s class party on Friday, had an eye doctor appointment, and had a fun play date and dinner with a sweet friend. I almost lost it once or twice, but I’m so excited to have gotten it all done. It was also SO nice to head out on our trip and be done on the 18th with shopping, presents, etc. It made for a great trip to just be able to relax after all that craziness! Stay tuned for our trip post!

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