Christmas Spirit!

Christmas day is always fun when it includes the grandkids! We started the morning with Greg, Erika, Robert, Anthony, Kourtnie, and Launa. Just as we finished opening gifts to and from each other the rest of the family started arriving. All together we had 19 of us for the day. I love it! It makes the Christmas spirit so much more fun.

Christmas Love!

Christmas Fun! Something was funny.

Christmas Music! Anthony played music for us on his saxophone.

Christmas Happiness! Kourtnie was happy with everything.

Christmas Princess! Launa got her own vanity and kitchen.


Christmas Baking

I don't do a lot of baking for the holidays. A little a here, a little there. Glenn & I teach a Sunday School class- 16,17 & 18yr old students. We asked them what kind of Christmas lesson they wanted this year. Before we could even talk about a lesson they wanted to put in their orders for goodies. I promised their favorites: chocolate chip cookies, snicker doodles and milk.

Launa & I spent all day Friday baking. Once Kourtnie got home from school she helped us finish. We ended up with dozens and dozens of cookies. Anthony, Kourtnie and Launa wanted to know if it was ALL for the teenagers at church. Ha! Do you really think my grandkids weren't going to get any of these cookies?
I was surprised to learn that Kourtnie and Launa had never heard of Snicker Doodles. They loved rolling the dough and covering them with the cinnamon/sugar.

Rolling the dough.


Super Bowl Champs!

Anthony's team, the Ojai Eagles, went to the Super Bowl today. They had an undefeated season and were playing the Santa Barbara Dons who had only lost 1 game. We drove to Santa Ynez for the game. It was really exciting to watch our guys play their hearts out. They won 20-0. The coaches said that they're the first Eagles team to go all the way undefeated.
Anthony on the line.

Anthony plays corner back and wide receiver. Today the coaches also put him on the line. He did great! Anthony said he loved it. We're so proud of he and the rest of the team!Is that one happy guy or what?


Papa & Anthony

Glenn & Anthony are close. Anthony found out Papa was going to put up the Christmas lights. He asked to help. When they were finished they sat and watched football together and ate pizza.

You can't tell from this picture but this spot on the roof is about 20 feet high.

Before going home Anthony told Papa that he had a school project he needed help with. He has to make a Polynesian mask. The next day Glenn went to Lowes and bought the wood etc. Anthony came over that evening and they were on their way. Anthony has come over every day since to work on the painting.
Measuring the wood
Cutting the woodDrawing the face.
Painting the face.


Christmas Decorating

I hadn't planned on it yet. We'd just returned the day before from our vacation. I had laundry, bills etc. But...... when you're 3 year old granddaughter says, "Grandma, let's decorate for Christmas." aaaahhhh What's a grandma to do?

So, on Tuesday we decorated. I dragged the ladder over in the garage, climbed up and pulled the numerous plastic buckets and other decorations down. We spent until afternoon nap time decorating. Launa had her own ideas as to where things should go. I was surprised, although I shouldn't have been-not with Launa, at how well she remembered where a lot of the things went from last year.

I bought some new talking stuffed animals from Hallmark. She confiscated Rudolph and it's now a new decoration at her house. She doesn't know I had secretly planned that. Each year I buy the newest musical promotion from Hallmark. This picture is Launa playing all of them at the same time.

Packer Fun!

Glenn & I went to a Packer football game against the Dallas Cowboys in Dallas. I'd never been to a professional football game and Glenn hadn't been since 1969. What a Blast! Okay, yes, the Packers lost and Favre got hurt. If we'd been watching it on TV we would've both been really bummed. I admit we weren't happy that we lost BUT we had so much fun it was hard to be as bummed as usual.
The fun began before we even left California. As soon as we entered the terminal at Burbank airport a guy saw my Packer jersey. He was wearing a Cowboy T-shirt and began ribbing us. Turned out that half the people on the plane were going to the game. Unfortunately for us most of them were Cowboy fans. Even the pilot got in on the fun. As we began taxing out he announced that the "charter flight for the Dallas Cowboys" was leaving now.
Can you tell who Jon & Tracy were rooting for?

We went to the game with the couple who got the tickets for us. Jon works with Glenn. (Thank you for getting us the tickets Jon) Our seats were in the upper deck in the end zone near the press box. I don't think there are any bad seats in the stadium. We could see great. I think almost half the fans were Packer fans. Most of the fans around us were Packers. So much fun!
First look at the field from our seats.Favre goes for a pass
Glenn & Wenona in the stands

We returned to California the next day, drove home from the airport, repacked our suitcases and drove up north for an anniversary weekend. We spent 3 nights/2 days at Sycamore Mineral Springs. Very relaxing.
Dinner at McLintocks restaurant. One of our favorite places to go. If you've never tried it, go next time you're near Pismo. The food is great. Check it out here.


Happy Birthday Ben!

My younger brother turned 50 on November 16. (we won't talk about my age) We had a surprise party for him on the 24th. There was a small family dinner on his birthday. Glenn & I weren't there because we were in Reno at a conference. Ben must have thought none of us figured his birthday was that big of a deal. Ha!
By the look on his face he was definitely surprised.
We weren't mean or anything with our decorations. hee hee This skeleton was wearing Ben's work uniform.
Ben and his wife Judy
Ben and Ben Jr.
After the kids tried to break the 50 shaped pinata, Ben finished it off.
The kids got all of the candy though.

17 Wonderful Years!

Our anniversary was on Saturday, November 24. It's been 17 great years together. We're going away next weekend to celebrate to our favorite spot....Sycamore Mineral Springs. Before heading up north to Sycamore we're taking an overnight flight on Thursday to Texas for the Packer/Cowboy game. Go Packers!

I'm one of those lucky wives who receives beautiful flowers each year on special occasions. I dry 2 out of each bouquet and have a pretty gold basket full of dried flowers. It's hard to tell from the picture but for this year's anniversary roses Glenn picked out deep reds and multi-colored pinks. They're beautiful!


Afternoon with the Grandkids

The kids got out of school early each day this week. Today Launa didn't want to nap at preschool so I picked her up early too. It's always a contest between Anthony & Kourtnie to see who gets to the computer first. Anthony and his friends won today. Kourtnie was bored so I got out the bucket of paints and crafts from the shelf while Launa was napping. After Launa's nap she decided to paint too.
I took this picture of Anthony with our next door neighbors Ian & Spencer 3 times. I couldn't get Spencer or Ian to smile. Boys! Anthony's grown up with a camera in my hands. He knows it's just better to turn and smile for grandma because she's not going to go away.
Kourtnie worked hard on this pretty box for her mom. She was able to finish it before Erika got home from work.
Launa tried just about every color we had. She was pretty good about not getting it on herself except her hands. My floor was another story. Ha!



This was Anthony's first year playing football. Of course he had to choose tackle instead of flag football. He's playing for the Ojai Eagles and so far his team is undefeated. Because Anthony is in his 1st year and because he needs to add a few pounds he wasn't on the first string. The good thing about playing at this age is everyone gets some playing time. The good thing about Anthony is that he is loving the game and as Coach Dave says, "Anthony plays with all heart." He puts his 'all' into it. He plays corner back and wide receiver. He's gotten a few tackles and even recovered a fumble.
Anthony won't let this guy get through. Practically the whole family came to see the last game. Greatma & Greatpa Marcus were at a previous game and wouldn't you know it, it's the one game I forgot my camera.


Birthday gifts are fun!

It's been almost a week since my birthday but I was waiting to see Elisa before blogging my gifts. Tonight was our once a month Nibble & Knit class. Lucky for me it's held here in Ojai. Elisa drives up here and we meet with a group of great women. We crochet, knit and talk talk talk. Oh yes, and someone brings goodies. It's a lot of fun! There are all levels of expertise and also lucky for me there's always someone willing to help.

Elisa brought me my gift. It's a table runner she weaved. I LOVE it. I had already decorated my table for Thanksgiving and it's the perfect touch. After Thanksgiving it will also fit in perfect in my dining room.
Okay, I know nothing about weaving and can't explain about the pattern she developed except to tell you that it spells my name. You'll have to go to here on Elisa's blog to read the explanation. What I can tell you is that I have an original table runner and it's beautiful!
She also brought me a fun gift. Can you tell what this is?
It's a dolphin. It opens up to hold my crochet/knitting notions. Way cool!

I'm a very lucky girl. My family also spoiled me. Glenn gave me an ipod. It has a video feature that I've already used and holds lots of songs. If only I'd known you can download from your CD's before I used up some of my itunes gift card. oops.... Erika & Robert gave me this cool digital key chain that holds about 80 photos. Now ask to see pictures of my grandkids. Ha! Greg got me a gift card from Barnes & Noble that I can't wait to use. Going there for me is like a kid in a candy store. Soooooo exciting! And last but not least (by any means) Anthony, Kourtnie & Launa gave me a necklace charm that says "#1 Grandma".

As I said, I'm a very lucky girl!



The morning of Halloween in the middle of my workout Erika called me. Launa attends the preschool where Erika works. The kids were going to start their Halloween parade in 45 minutes and Erika wasn't going to be able to get out of her classroom to walk with Launa or take pictures. "Mom?" I finished my workout, washed up a bit, threw some halfway presentable clothes on and rushed to the school, camera in hand. It was worth it! Launa looked so adorable as Ariel the Mermaid. (grandma's not prejudice)

Launa had fun parading through the convalescent home and then the doctor's buildings where the kids were given candy from the nurses and a toothbrush from the dentist. She looked so cute walking around in her mermaid costume and holding her wand.
Poor Launa! The hem of her costume ripped and it kept getting caught on her shoe during the entire walk. But she was a trooper and didn't want to be held. I took the costume home and fixed it before the evening trick or treating. I had also done a little bit of alterations on Kourtnie's costume and some mending for Erika earlier this week. Erika called me her "personal seamstress" as I left the school. It's good to be needed. :)
The back of Launa as she was parading through the hospital.
Launa and her best friend Amber sitting with the rest of the kids.
That night Erika and I took the kids trick or treating to one of the busiest neighborhoods in Ojai.

Anthony wore his football uniform.
Kourtnie the Indian.
Launa as Ariel.

These are the beautiful roses Glenn sent to me today. I'm so lucky. What a wonderful husband!!!!


Happy Birthday Mom!

Yesterday was Mom's birthday. Everybody sing "Happy Birthday"! Mom will kill me when she reads this and finds out that I'm telling the world how old she is but I think she looks GREAT! Mom turned 75 yesterday yet looks and acts a lot younger.

The family went out to dinner at a restaurant in Ventura last night. There were 16 of us. We had a room all to ourselves. It made it a lot nicer for talking, laughing etc. It's the first time that we'd been to Chicago Ribs and my sister, Debbie, declared that it'll be the family get together place from now on. Debbie brought cupcakes for all of us with the chocolate homemade frosting that she, our brother Ben and I beg for each birthday. Next the restaurant brought a huge birthday dessert that mom had to take home. She received a lot of nice cards, cute drawings from the grandkids and great-grandkids. Her main gift was a day of pampering at a spa in Ojai.

My mom and me....
Mom with Debbie, Ben and I
Mom & Dad