Friday, December 31, 2010

The Little Man Turns One!

I had to take a picture of Archer in his birthday suit on his birthday. I know some of you are worried that this might be a tradition and Mark's birthday is next month. No worries. I only take pictures of folks in their birthday suit on their first birthday.

All the printed materials came from
She has wonderful ideas for hostesses and great products. We had one issue and I must say her customer service is great.

The set up. The Little Man is infatuated with balloons. The decor made his sweet little day!

You can't tell in the picture but the banner spelled out "Archer."

With so many people there I don't know why I was the one taking pictures! I should have been in this one.

The big cake said "F.D. Archer" and "Engine #1".

Arch's personal cake and a sparkler in the shape of a "1". He was bedazzled by the small fire and was a bit frustrated when we would not let him grab it!

My brave grandmother allowed Archer to feed her cake.

The cakes were made by my friend Rachel's friend, Lauren in Dallas. I was worried about where to get a cake on a Sunday, the day after Christmas. But, she really came through. I thought the cakes turned out adorable and best of all they tasted great too. If you are throwing a party in Dallas, she's your girl!

Overall, I think Archer had a great time at his party. He seemed to enjoy being the center of attention and putting on a show for guests. Not once was he overwhelmed with center stage. For those of you who already call him "little Mark," it's just another characteristic to add to the list!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from our house to your's!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Musical Happenings

Archer is a bit obsessed with his daddy's guitars and tried to join in the strumming. He likes to dance and make music all at the same time. Kindermusik is paying off!

Savannah was an angel in our church's children choir musical. For weeks she begged to listen to the practice cd for the musical in our car. That's one sweet sound hearing your 5 year old belt out love for Jesus in song from the back seat.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

One Sweet Tea

Every other year I host a Neighborhood Christmas Tea in hopes of getting together with the people I live so close to but don't always see. I love the ladies in our neighborhood and what better way is there for women to spend time together than over petit fours, dainty tea cups surrounded with wonderful chatter.

This is the first year Savannah has been old enough to attend the tea. She has been anticipating this day for years. An in honour of her coming of age, I chose the Nutcracker Suite as out these.

Not only is Savannah into tea parties and the The Nutcracker ballet, she is also into posing. Can you tell? What happened to my dirt-loving tom boy?

You can catch a peak at my "good memories" apron mentioned in a previous post.

Did I mention big hats and lacy gloves are highly encouraged? If I am going to throw a themed party - which I love to do - I am going to go all out. That said, I am in search of a bigger hat. Let me know if you come across one!

And lastly there is my mom who was in charge of Archer during our feminine soiree. I would have still been in my pajamas and serving delivery pizza if she had not come to my rescue!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Got Milk?

"Why should all virtue work in one and the same way? Why should all give dollars? It is very inconvenient to us country folk, and we do not think any good will come of it. We have not dollars; merchants have;let them give. Farmers will give corn; poets will sing; women will sew, laborers will lend a hand, the children will bring flowers."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

This quote made me think of a friend of mine who has little money so they tithe in fresh milk from their cows. Their pastor is never without that nourishing vitamin rich liquid which in return makes him stronger for Christ's work.

I can think of all the talent and resources my friends have, of which money is the least of these. If we all gave of these things would we need big government to provide such services? What if we paid our taxes with what resources we had? For some it could be money. For others it might be sewing clothes for the poor. Or knowledge waiting to be shared.

I just paid for my CPR certification class with 2 homemade meals. I'm sure I could toss out a few more for the homeless as a means to pay taxes. My cupboard holds and excess of homemade pear preserves laced with warming cinnamon. A congressman can use that as payment right?

My Dad works for the IRS. Maybe I should bring this subject up over the holidays. He is sure to either agree wildly or ask me when I took up the habit of smoking pot!

I do love the quote though. Money really is the least imaginative of our resources.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Thankful for Thanksgiving

We had 22 hungry family members in our humble abode this Thanksgiving. And surprisingly it was a fairly calm day if you leave out the fact that we had 2 small fires. No one was harmed and luckily it happened before anyone arrived. On a positive note we learned that our fire extinguisher has expired and no longer works. Now at least we can replace it before we really need it.

Uncle Allen is really telling a good story here. What would he do if he knew his picture was posted on the Internet?

Archer fell in love with Chaney. For someone who is normally attached to my hip, I hardly saw him all day!

Behind Savannah and Berkley, you can still see flames around the turkey fryer.

Dad, Janette, and Sherry visiting over snacks.

Gigi and Arch

Savannah's favorite part of Thanksgiving is the turkey leg. She gnawed on that thing all weekend.

We are thankful for the opportunity to open our house up to family. We are thankful to have family to open it up to.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Memory Stitch

Do you know how to sew? Ever used the technique, memory stitch? Here's a short tutorial.

First you must have several women. The memory stitch is a multi-generational event. Extra moms, grandma's, sisters, aunts, and great-grandmothers are needed for wisdom, expertise, cooking, and baby holding. After all this won't be just a 2 hour event! You are going to need some help. If women are not abounding in your house, go out and get some. Or at least draw on the memories of a wiser generation with a phone call while you sew.

Next, decide what project you want to make for and with your loved ones. Below are pictures of my first quilt, a gift for Archer.

Once you begin your project soak up every moment. My grandmother, great aunt, and mom came out to help me with Archer's quilt. About a month later my sister, her 3 kids, my mom, my great aunt, and my grandmother all came out again (I'll have to get pictures from my mom to post). This time my sister and I made labor intense but beautiful aprons. With all the knowledge and experience floating around the room you must be like a sponge and soak it up to create the memory stitch. This tip is not relegated to just the topic of sewing.

The beauty of the memory stitch does not lie within the skill or precision. In every stitch of my quilt and apron I see stories shared over thread, needles, and a few cups of hot tea. And the more crooked the stitch the more giggles I remember. New sewing skills learned that now show on my work display memories like a storyboard. My memories and even my grandmother and great aunt's memories from tales of their young learning years with my great-grandmother are woven through.

Blood (I'm just learning to sew after all), sweat, tears, laughter, stories, memories old and new, the touch of many hands from several generations, and a little frustration are all present on that tiny thread.

I call my apron my "good memories" apron. And every stitch in Archer's quilt holds love and affection from myself and those who taught me. The fruit of my labor from both projects are things I will cherish forever no matter how tattered they become. Or perhaps more so the more tattered they become. And with the realization of what the memory stitch holds, I think I will go curl up on the couch now with a cup of hot tea and the quilt my grandmother made just for me.

October Review

The cat and dog.

Soaking up a mild fall day before the cooler weather hit.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Kids, kids, and more kids

Here are a few recent pics of the kiddos. They were taken at a family reunion last weekend.

At 9 months of age, Archer is ready to explore the world in spite of being a bit of a Mamma's boy. And as you can tell, Savannah as always is highly entertaining. The picture of my kids with 2 extra kids includes my cousin Brenda's girls. I have a picture of Savannah at her first reunion with these two sweeties holding her just like they are holding Archer. They make great pseudo-big-sisters/cousins.