Saturday, December 27, 2008

December Whirlwind!


That's what it's been like around our home for the past several weeks. It wasn't enough to be preparing for Christmas - we also had to work on preparing our house to sell and continue checking in on our house being built! Our contractor painted the entire inside of our house last week - chaos! But it is oh, so beautiful! What a difference paint makes. I went from white white walls that blended in with all our trim to a lovely warm straw color. Even my laundry room is lovely!

See?

Amidst the Christmas bustle we have been packing and moving and staging. But it has been a fun Christmas. It will also be our last here. I can't think about that too much right now - I am not ready to start crying about leaving this, our first home! So many memories here after 9 1/2 years. I know I will cry - no, bawl - but I am terribly excited about our lovely new house too!


Christmas (and birthday) photo journal!


Jacob had his birthday party with friends on the Saturday before Christmas. This was his cake. He had some special friends over to play Wii games and Legos.

Jacob with his great friends and his brother and sister!

Jacob was all smiles and excitement on his birthday morning (December 23rd) as he opened his gifts from us. We all had a fun day together.
By the end Mikey was all worn out.
And of course, I wasn't busy enough so I decided I really was going to finish making one of my sisters a set of quilted hot pads. And so you won't think I'm a slacker, I threw in a quilt top for my other sister (not shown). Yes, I'm crazy!
On Christmas Eve we went with my parents to Mass and then went to their house for our traditional Christmas Eve tamales and some time together. The children loved spending time over there and opening a few presents. Mikey especially loved his stuffed doggie!

And the delight in an 8 year old boy's face when he gets just what he'd hoped for - ANOTHER Star Wars Lego set!
Here are the children making their way downstairs on Christmas morning to see what Santa had brought them. What a precious photo - Andrew with his eyes closed and Jacob walking backwards. :)

That would be Andrew behind his brand new Cars Wii game. And see that yellow and blue stomp rocket on the floor next to him? Talk about a hit!

More 8 year old delight! The Apples to Apples game he'd been wishing for (from my sister).

All righty. I know this is an absolutely AWFUL!!!!!!! photo of me, BUT. This is me receiving my favorite Christmas gift - a diamond bracelet. Not just any diamond bracelet. It is the diamond bracelet I lost!!!!!!!!!!!!! Several weeks back I had lost the bracelet I had received from Mikey after he was born. We had looked everywhere and I had given up hope. Brian found it on the Sunday before Christmas as he pulled all the seats out of the van in preparation to take stuff to storage. He saved it and wrapped it up. I couldn't be more thrilled!

Brian and Andrew. He had just opened the screwdrivers that Andrew had picked out for Brian. Brian and Andrew love to work together on building and fix-it projects and Andrew has a special little knack with tools.

Time for opening stockings.

We spent the rest of Christmas day (lunch on) at Brian's parents. The kids had more fun opening presents and we shared a lovely meal together. The only missing piece? Brian's brother and his family. They couldn't make this year and the kids really missed them!

This is Nicole with her Gamma!

Andrew with his Pappa.

And this is what Jacob has been up to for days now. Couldn't be better.
And the fruits of his labor.


And here is my sweet Nicole with her favorite Christmas gift - Little Mia! The three of us are off to run a few errands.


I want to wish you all a blessed Christmas season and a Happy New Year. You are all a blessing to me.

Now back to my Christmas fun (even though I've had it since the day after Thanksgiving!).


Friday, December 12, 2008

A First

The first thing I made on my new sewing machine (my early Christmas gift)! I was even able to do an all over random stippling stitch for the quilting. I have been wanting to do it for a while now! I am so excited. I passed this table runner on to a dear friend of mine.

Snow and a Shuttle!

Here are a few more lovely snow photos. Too fantastic! A hurricane (it was even snowing on Galveston Island) and a snow all in one season!

The following photos are from right as it stopped snowing around 11:30.



The next morning a lot of the snow had melted, but there was enough that the kids could play a bit more in it.



We were so excited to get such a nice accumulation of snow. We didn't expect to be doubly blessed with a special Shuttle piggyback flyover the next day! On their way back to Florida after landing in California, the shuttle made a special trip to circle our Johnson Space Center several times. What a Christmas gift for all the wonderful people who work for the shuttle program! It flew so close to the ground. These photos were taken by someone Brian works with and they are impressive. We drove out to JSC at lunchtime to go see it (15 minutes away). What a once in a lifetime experience.



Many Advent Blessings,
Celeste

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Snow 2008




Well, things just don't get much more special than this! Snow! In Houston! On December 10th! My goodness! It snowed only four years ago!!!!!!! I was telling the kids this evening that it is amazing that in 4 years it has snowed twice! Before the Christmas Eve snow of 2004, Brian and I had never seen snow like this. We have lived here all our lives. Our kids are so excited. The crazy thing is that yesterday the temperatures were in the 70s! That's Houston weather for you!

Excuse me while I go enjoy the snow a bit more. It should warm up into the 50's tomorrow, so it is short lived.

Blessings,

Celeste

Monday, November 24, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

All Done


Last night I spent about an hour and 15 minutes finishing up this cute little quilt. I absolutely love how it turned out. So sweet and colorful. This is the first quilt I designed myself and put together to completion. There is nothing complicated about it, but I am pleased nonetheless.

The binding is actually leftover binding from a baby quilt that I made for a friend. It was the perfect color and style. I sewed together the four pieces of left over binding (this was before I taught myself to do continuous binding with mitered corners) and had just the right amount. Enough to go around the quilt with four inches left over. Now that's resourcefulness!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I'm not sure how this happened

The other evening I went upstairs around 9:30 to quilt for just a bit. I wasn't even sure what I was going to work on (not a problem when you have as many "in progress" projects as I do). I decided to pin the little triangle rainbow quilt I had finished.

I descended an hour and a half later and told Brian, "Well, I didn't intend to do it, but I quilted the entire thing. One thing led to another and it was done!"

How does that happen?

Now for the binding!

Pictures later.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Quilt Show 2008

This past Saturday I attended the annual Houston International Quilt Festival. As usual, I enjoyed myself immensely. There are two halves to the show. There are the quilts on display for rows and rows and rows and the vendors for rows and rows and rows. Since I can only go for one of the four days it is here, I rarely go see the display quilts. I spend my day with the vendors and that alone takes the entire day. There is so much to see, so many quilts just in the vendor section, you can't believe it. It is so incredible!

I went with a great friend and we so enjoyed walking and walking and browsing and browsing and dreaming and oh, I guess some buying too. I could buy so much, but then I have to pace myself because I already have enough to keep me busy for years!

I bought this adorable little kit at one booth. It makes the most adorable little purse out of two fat quarters. I bought the pattern and if you bought one of the fabric kits to make it, you got the pattern for 4$ instead of 8$. So cute, plus they had a kit in one of my favorite recent fabric lines, Posh.


I went to the quilt show interested to see several new fabric lines I'd seen in a catalog. And as I have experienced in years past, there is ALWAYS one fabric that draws me in at the show booth after booth. This year it was Moda's Charisma fabric line. It is beautiful. I walked into a booth and saw a very simple small quilt done in the Charisma fabric. I picked it up, but then I turned the corner and saw a quilt kit I liked even better using the same fabric. And I snapped it up!


The other fabric line I loved was Moda's Woodland Bloom. It is such a wonderfully colorful, modern, fun fabric. I wasn't even sure I would buy any of it, but then at the end I saw a booth that had their charm packs (packs of 5" squares of a line of fabric) of Charisma for 7$ a piece. I bought 4. That will make a great size quilt top for a great price! I found this wonderful way to use charm squares on a blog and I started putting some blocks together last night. This is super fun and easy - a great way to showcase this lovely, lively fabric.


Lastly I bought a couple of preprinted panels to use to make a couple of quick baby quilts for a sweet couple that is having their first babies (twins) in a couple of months. These were so cute.


I wish all my dear friends could share this fun day with me every year! I always try not to miss it. So anyone wanting to come with me next year - hop on board for mid October!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Quilting Night

Some friends and I got together last night for our monthly quilting/crafting night. It was so much fun! There was so much wonderful creating going on and lots of great conversation! I hosted it once again thinking it might be the last time I get to host it in this house. We had such fun!

I worked on some new quilting squares based on this quilt I saw a while back and this recent tutorial from one of my favorite quilting blogs. I am excited to see this one come together. It is so easy, it's pitiful!



Then I finished up my mini quilt top. I love how it turned out!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nothing Sweeter

Than hearing your three year old say the Act of Contrition all by himself at bedtime. We have been saying it so Jacob can memorize it for his Sacraments this year. In the mean time, as with many things, Nicole and Andrew have picked it up. What a beautiful blessing.

O my God, I am heartily sorry
for having offended You, and I
detest all my sins, because of your
just punishment; but most of all
because they offend You, my God,
Who are all good and deserving
of all my love.
I firmly resolve, with the help
of your grace, to sin no more, and
to avoid the near occasion of sin.
Amen.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Miscellaneous

Digging in the dirt this weekend!


Mikey helping out with the shovel.


Wow, Mom! Look at all this great dirt!

Oh, and look at those precious little dirty feet - my favorite!


Celebrating Jacob's Saint Day Last Week!
St. Edward, pray for us.

A little coloring for everyone and a contest.

His dessert choice - chocolate cake!

My Sweetie!