Thursday, December 18, 2008

The holidays are underway...

The Christmas season is well underway. There's so much holiday stuff to try and fit into the schedule....maybe that seems especially true this year since we're getting ready to go to North Carolina next week. And maybe because we keep getting snow, which has forced me to spend way too much time on the road.

Here's the schedule for the next couple of days...

Tonight: book club Christmas cocktails
Friday: work, Holidazzle
Saturday: bake Christmas cookies, double-date with Rachel & Romo
Sunday: church (I'm a greeter this week), see Four Christmases with Beth & Dave
Monday: work, pack
Tuesday: work, bring dogs to their sitter in Belle Plaine
Wednesday: Depart for NC at 6:30 a.m.

Not much going on at all...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Another week flies by...

It seems like my blog posts have been slowing down to just one or two a week. Life seems to be criss-crossing between super busy and super boring -- although much more of the super busy. This past week was more of the super boring variety. Lots of work...but then just coming home and relaxing with the boys. I've also had a sore throat most of the week, so I've been trying to lay low in hopes that it doesn't turn into full-blown cold.

Today there's a rain/ice/snow storm, so we've deliberately decided to stay home most of the day. Luckily, the roads didn't start getting bad until after church. The great part of having storms is that it forces you to relax and to enjoy the season. If it wasn't snowing, I'd probably be running around doing errands. Instead I wrapped some Christmas presents and did some shopping online (oops...I accidentally shipped Anthony's present here...and the whole purpose of buying it online was so I didn't have to pack it!) Dave's watching the Vikings game. I fixed some of the remaining Christmas ornaments that needed ornament hangers (I improvised with some ribbon). I can't quite say that I'm all cozy and warm in my home -- the truth is that my feet and hands are freezing. But I guess it's much warmer inside that outside!!!

Yesterday was not so relaxing. Melissa and I met in the morning at Caribou and then went to the gym for yoga class (did I mention I've given up caffeine!!! I had a delicious hot apple blast). Afterwards, I went straight to Becky's house for Amanda's b-day party. Of course a watermelon cake was requested! I brought the cake and iced it at the party. The girls love helping put the jelly beans and chocolate chips on it, so of course everyone got a chance to help. Deborah asked all the kids who had been sick in the passed week to raise their hands. I think all put one kid put their hands in the air. Great! At least they washed hands first. And they actually listened when we told them not to lick their fingers until they were all done helping. Becky took some pics, so hopefully she'll email me some. Then I went to my parents house to hang out with my dad for 20 minutes or so and to give them a USB cord for their printer. Then I went home and got the dogs and we went to Belle Plaine. We went to visit the person who'll be dog-sitting the boys when we go to North Carolina. I always hate leaving the dogs and am apprehensive about where they I had to visit the house first. I decided that it should work well for the boys. The house has three dogs and two cats -- so they obviously like pets...and the woman works at a vet clinic. They have a fenced-in yard, and I know Otis and Cooper will enjoy being able to run outside anytime. In fact, I have a feeling they'll be asking for one for Christmas (well, if they could talk they would). Dave and I decided to go to El Loro for dinner. I have a new favorite meal there! Burritos Mexicanos. Well, I guess it's basically a pre-made fajita...but with a creamy white-queso sauce on top. Yum! And I got left-overs in the fridge, which I may go heat up now. Hooray!

This next week will be busy. A holiday party for work and a holiday get-together for book club. It's the last full week of work until Christmas. Hooray! Hooray!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Weekend Update...

This weekend was a busy one. Today I feel dehydrated and have a sore throat and freezing hands…so hopefully I don’t have the beginnings of a cold. I’ve had fun-filled couple of days, and I’m excited to share the details…

Thursday night was my first night of Theology on Tap (#14 on my 101 in 1,001 list). It was a small group of people close to my age and we shared some appetizers, coffee and tea, and some interesting thoughts about the Bible... where it came from, why (or if) it’s relevant today and we discussed some quotes that people have said about the Bible and if we agree with those people. Going forward we’re going to meet once a month. We decided to focus mostly on social issues and how they relate to our faith and sometimes have speakers. I’m excited to have some good discussions, deepen my faith and form deeper friendships with the people in the group.

Friday, my nieces were dropped off at my office and I took them to my house for a sleepover at their Aunt and Uncle’s home. Unfortunately for Dave and I, having a sleepover at the end of the week translates to having some tired girls. After some minor disagreements (and tears) over dolls and dinner plates, we had a good night eating pizza, watching a movie and playing with American Girl dolls. By 9 p.m., the girls were actually wanting to go to bed. So off to bed they went (in our new hide-a-bed), and slept until 6:30 a.m. the next morning…

Saturday was a big morning for us. We had big plans to go have breakfast with Santa at the YMCA. Well, they were big plans from my point-of-view. The girls weren’t that excited, b/c they’re shy around Santa. They wanted to stay at my home and watch PBS Kids. But they also wanted to go swimming at the Y, so I was able to convince them to go to breakfast too. Emily and I got our photo with Santa (will be posting later). Amanda was too scared, so she just stayed at the table while we got our photo. Krissy was one of the elves, and was taking pics for all the families there. Amanda and I ate our breakfast (Emily didn’t like pancake and sausage so she didn’t eat). The thing that both girls enjoyed was making a Christmas ornament. They spent an hour working on it. After that we all went swimming. We had a lot of fun racing, pretending we were American Girl dolls, and me pulling the girls around while they held onto a noodle. After all that was said and done, I drove the girls back home and I was exhausted! I went to shop at Kohl’s and it took me over an hour to decide how to spend my $10 Kohl’s cash. Lol. Needless to say, I went home and laid on my bed for a couple of hours and watch Anne of Green Gables.

Later Saturday night, Dave and I went over to Ron and Laura’s apartment. Ron is of one of Dave’s friends from work. We had a fun night together. Laura works for a medical insurance company, and one of her clients was my old work. So she knew a bunch of people from HR from my old job…so it was cool to have some connections to each other. It’s such a small world. Speaking of a small world, we went over to Major’s later on that night. Our friend, Heather, was there too. It was definitely fun to see her! Reminded me of old times when we used to go out dancing.

Church on Sunday was fun. We listen to scripture and sang lots of Christmas songs while watching the snow fall outside. Rachel and I took my mom to lunch at Friday's and to see Australia for her b-day (it was her b-day on Saturday). Something happened that I never ever thought would happen. I cried during a movie and Rachel and my mom did not! If you know my mom and Rachel, you'd know how unbelievable that seems! They cry at almost anything that's the least bit sentimental. We also went to the mall between the movie and lunch. Rachel got a couple of sweaters and I found some slippers that I really want.

Between the cold wind on Sunday and the six inches of snow today (only took me 1 1/2 hours to drive home today (usually takes 25 minutes)); I am ready to visit some warmer weather. Although, the snow is really beautiful and magical. I dug out my wool socks. Dave and I took Otis and Cooper outside to play in the snow. They always get so hyper and run around and stick their faces into the snow. And they got to play with their friend Lexi. It's time to make some hot chocolate, so I can finish thawing my fingers!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


December! I can’t believe it’s already the last month of 2008! This month will be busy for us, especially since we’re going to North Carolina for a whole week! I think this might be our longest trip there ever, and I’m looking forward to it!

This year has been a great year! And I’m looking forward to 2009! I’m sure I’ll be blogging some sort of “reminiscing the year” post later this month, but not today. I’ll also have to take a good look at my 101 in 1,001 list and see what I really want to try and accomplish in 2009.

Here’s what the Balow Bunch is up to this month…

  • My mom’s b-day
  • A sleepover with Emily and Amanda and we’re going to have breakfast with Santa
  • Holiday party for Jenny’s work
  • Theology on Tap (the Bible study group my church is starting for young adults (ages mid-lates 20's - ?))
  • Book club "Christmas Cocktails"
  • Dave finishes another semester of school
  • Amanda’s b-day
  • Annual Holiday cookie baking event
  • Traveling to NC
  • Celebrating Christmas