Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Piece of History

I spent time this weekend doing some genealogy research on my moms side of the family. I was amazed when I found my great great grandfathers WW1 draft registration card and a record from the 1930 census that shows my great grandparents. Pretty awesome. Can't wait to discover more.
1930 Census that shows my great-grandparents

Great-great grandfather's WWI Draft registration card

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Very Merry Indeed

I am always so sad when Christmas is over. I think half the fun of the holiday is the anticipation and preparation leading up to it. That said, this year was full of wonderful memories that I can look back upon fondly.

This was a busy year in that we had to fit 3 Christmases into a span of 24 hours. This is not a feat I wish to do again anytime soon so I hope we figure something else out for future years.

We started off with having Christmas Eve at my dad's house. It's always such a fun and lively time and is a great way to kick off the celebration. It's awesome to be there with my brothers (includes surrogate brother Joe), sister, and three delightful nieces. The little ones are growing up so fast and they always make the holiday so fun especially when they open their presents and you see their faces light up. After our traditional dinner of ziti, we all congregate in the living room and put on Christmas Vacation (my favorite xmas movie ever). A bonus of the evening is that we get to celebrate the December birthdays of John, Aunt Mo, and me - of which the highlight is Andrea's peppermint red velvet/white cake swirl cake. It's the best holiday dessert ever -- I need the recipe!

My niece Alise (hey that rhymes)
Poppop and Bella
My niece Abby - she's a trip and a half.

December babies! Aunt Mo, me, and Johnny
Get in me belly. Now. 
Christmas Eve night and Christmas morning we spend with my mom. She always makes everything so incredibly special and she's the reason Christmas is my favorite holiday.  Our Christmas is always so calm and relaxing but still very fun. We take our time to get up and after we get the animals fed and a cup of coffee in our hands, we all find our spots on the floor to open presents. Each year, I make us wear something ridiculous - whether its an ugly Christmas sweater, elf or santa hats, or, as was the case this year, hats from Oktoberfest. After we take our sweet time opening presents, mom always makes egg sandwiches and kielbasa (a Polish tradition we've had for years...the kielbasa part - the egg sandwiches are a mom/steffi tradition).
Mom's gorgeous tree and the 8billion presents! 
The bear is always a good sport...

Me and Boarat
Mom got our lil family of three monogrammed stockings! 

We even made the dogs wear hats
Me and Lewis opening up gifts

Usually after we have breakfast, we all cuddle up in the living room and watch A Christmas Story and nap a little bit. This year we had to skip that part and head down to Roanoke to see the Foutz clan. We finally made it down to Jerry's parents house around 6:30 and arrived in the middle of dinner. It's always great to catch up with the family. We opened up some wine, watched some football, and later in the evening opened presents between just the immediate family. All in all it was a lovely time.

Jerry and I both made out like bandits this year but the material things are so inconsequential. I love Christmas because of the time we get to spend with our families and because of the memories the day brings. It was a very merry Christmas indeed.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A Keeper

The other night, Jerry surprised me with a belated anniversary present. I posted a picture below but it is a canvas print of one of our wedding pictures with our vows written across it. I couldn't stop crying and hugging him after I opened it. Not only was it a sweet surprise but the picture is so quintessentially us and the words that we spoke that day about cherishing our friendship and love forever really got me. 

He's a keeper.