Actually, I just want to say that I love birthdays -- even this close to Christmas. Everyone in my family (except Mark) remembered to call and some of them even sang! Liam, at just 5 months, wrote me a card and posted pictures of it on his blog (thanks Danny and Denise), and -- most importantly -- I had a wonderful birthday with my fabulous husband and incredible girls!
Chopper has been bringing me little presents all week: flowers, a chick flick with back scratching (Chopper, not the movie), quilt magazines, a bag of tamales (he knows just what I like!), and then last night we celebrated as a family with cake and ice cream and more presents!
I finally have a double-boiler and so I took advantage and made my mom's cooked frosting -- I love this stuff! It's really simple to make but you do need the double-boiler and I particularly love that it is light and not overly sweet like the store-bought frostings.
And it makes a beautiful cupcake!
Chopper has been working on a furniture refinishing project. I saw this console sitting in a yard down the street several weeks ago and since it sat there for a few days I figured it wasn't something they wanted. Chopper went down and asked the people what they were doing with it and they told us to take it. So we did! It is a nice solid piece of furniture but was painted a butter yellow done in the shabby chic style which we didn't love, so he set out on the task to strip and refinish and he did a wonderful job.
We didn't get a true before picture -- the drawers have already been done here.
These two give you a better picture of the color and finish. It's not bad -- just not our style or color choice.
And this is the finished piece! It turned out so beautifully and perfectly houses the new TV. Yeah, we got a new one. The one we had (still have really) is an 18" box that was supposed to be temporary 2 years ago. We've held off on buying another tv partly because we knew we would have to get a new entertainment center or console as well (ours only holds box tv's) and we didn't have the money for it all. So when this one came home the first thing Chopper said was, we're going to have to get a new tv! We should've put the old one on there and taken a picture . . .
It's a lot of tv to look at when you're only used to 18" by the way. My eyes needed to adjust actually! We may never go to the theater again -- ok there are certain things you still have to see in the theater but I'm not kidding when I say watching our movies is like seeing them for the first time. You can actually read any translations in the movie and see the details!
Finally, Megan is an avid reader. I frequently find her "reading" her books when I'm busy with other things. The first video is just finding her in her tent. The second is her "reading" one of her Critter books. When she reads, the story often involves pieces of other books we've been reading together, parts of movies she's watched, even songs we sing or things we talk about around the house. It's a lot of fun for me to listen in. This year I'm going to start her on letters and sounds and words and while I'm excited for the world of reading to really open up, part of me doesn't want to destroy this world of make-believe that she reads for herself out of books. I hope that it continues in other ways.
I think that's all folks!