Friday, January 30, 2009

New Years with the Yarnells

I am officially coming back to bloggeville. I contemplated for these past few weeks and decided that I wasn't going to feel the least bit guilty nor worried about not blogging. Thus, the feeling got carried away and so did any posting with it! I guess you could say it's been a busy month in many, many ways. Trying to get back in the swing of life after the holidays always proves more strenuous than I ever anticipate. Not my forte. But here we are, back on track in many areas, and still some to go. Thus is my life. 

So with the happenings of this past month, I tried to compile them as you will see. 

Hope you are all well...better than I am! I have been so sick and between that and all the snow we've been getting I have not left the house in a whole week. Not kidding!!!

New Years with the Yarnells:

Sometimes traditions happen on their own. Before you realize it, the repeating of an event or celebration becomes nearly expected and when fulfilled, it is officially a tradition. Well, that is how our little get togethers with the Yarnell's have come about. There's usually a phone call, a "if you have nothing else going on...come on down" and there you have it. We have so much fun with them and they are SO GREAT with the kids! We have enjoyed our annual New Years celebration with them. 

Carrie's beautiful new china. 
She loves polka dots and they are so delicate.

"Miss Carrie" is a FABULOUS cook, right guys!!

Notice the colors in the background (which isn't quite the same in this pic). They did a lot of decorating since last time. 

A Recipe I  keep wanting to share with you that I made for our little New Years Eve bash:

1. Melt one bag each of chocolate chips and butterscotch chips in the microwave. Stir until mixed.

2. Combine one bag of mini marshmallows, one container of Chow Mein noodles and one can of cashew pieces. (do this first actually, or the chocolate will set up.)

3. Mix chocolate with the dry ingredients gradually (but quickly) until the dry ingredients are covered in chocolate. 

4. Scoop on a cookie sheet and chill. I use one of those cookie scoops which works great. Each cookie should be a round little pile. This makes a lot!!! 
(didn't count, but probably 4 dozen)

*sorry, forgot to take a finished product picture.

BOYS will be boys

This picture right here pretty much sums up our photo taking ability this trip. 

Thanks for our great toy, Mr. Brion!!!
Miss Carrie and Drew hard at work on a masterpiece.
Two peas in a pod!
The kitties!!! Jack would not leave the poor kitties alone. He LOVED them!

This was our New Years Eve party (+emily who is taking the picture).
This was in the beginning, when things were calm. Then we downed tons of sugar and caffeinated beverages and moved to the table where we brought out the games. THEN there was blood, my friends. Who knew this sweet looking group could get so competitive?? (Thankfully, it all happened while the boys were sleeping!)

L-R  Tommy & Kelly Ardnt, Me, Jack, John, Carrie, Drew, Brion, doggie (can't remember her name...)


We got a pet.

Well, sort of.

Meet SQUIRE...

This adorable rag-a-muffin opossum is our newest member.

And he travels with us.

He is full of inspiration and always brightens my day when I see him or give him a squeeze. 

He's quiet. Gets along great with the kids. Completely complies and best yet, cleans up after himself!

Isn't he the cutest??? Another perk is that he has a long, skinny rubber tail. This has proven useful in many ways!

SHE made him and I got him half price at our museum store's closing sale. Her studio is right here in town & awhile back she held a craft fair of sorts in her old church-basement studio that a friend and I went to. It was fabulous. Her stuff is so...tactile. I love it. She had HUGE bins full of color coordinated wool sweater scraps. 

OK. On to the rest of the inspiration. Sorry most of this is Christmasy, but it was New Years so everything was still out. Moravian Book Store is our favorite shop to visit while at Brion & Carrie's. It's web site claims this: The Moravian Book Shop, founded in 1745, is the oldest continually-operating bookstore in the world! It is located in the heart of Historic Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. It is like an endless bookstore. It starts out as a stationary store, then merges to a cafe/bakery, then on to the children's boutique, the book section, and ends with an upscale gift store. It's so much fun to peruse! Here are some things that caught my eye:

A Time for Everything

We received a phone call about John's great uncle Bill right before Christmas. They found something pretty severe and it wasn't looking good. It was brain cancer and he was going to start chemo right away. Well, he didn't make it much past new years. With great sadness, we were glad to be able to make it to the funeral down in NJ to see John's mom's family. It was a quick trip but well worth it. Perspective is priceless. 

Later that week I got a starbucks coffee, and this is was on my cup. I thought it was quite fitting.

The Way I See It #292

"The way we get to live forever is through memories stored in the hearts and souls of those whose lives we touch. That's our soul print. It's our comfort, our emotional nourishment at the end of the day and the end of a life. How wonderful that they are called up at will and savored randomly. It seems to me we should spend our lives in a conscious state of creating these meaningful moments that live one. Memories matter."   -Leeza Gibbons

Now I know there are some holes here in speaking of eternal matters, but what I liked most about it was the reminder of what "we" who are left have to hold on to. And how while we are here we are doing things that are burning those "soul prints" into the lives we touch.

Jack & his GGS (great grandpa stra)

Our sleeping quarters. 
Needless to say the boys had way too much fun and took way too long to fall asleep!

A picture of my beautiful mother-in-law from yesteryears.

Jack all dolled up. A picture of my mother-in-law and her sister hangs above.

At the catholic church for the funeral.  

So Jack and mommy had a little date in the foyer.

And thankfully, mommy had a little bag of mini m&m's.

And a pad of paper. And some hungry little friends as well.

So we kept ourselves occupied in a most magical way. 

All the while having a yummy little snack.

At the burial. Uncle Bill was in the army during WW2. He was a gunman in a tank and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. His military burial was so honorable.  

His flag for his wife.

A final goodbye. Something I will never forget. Tears fell unbridled. I hope I never forget this moment. We have but a lifetime. 

Even Jack knew there was something unique going on.

From generation to generation. (Drew & his Bop-Bop)

Uncle Bill was quite the artist. He drew this picture when he was only 6 years old. After the war he went to art school. He was a master doodler and creative writer with the most witty style. 

Back at the house. John's grandparents live in the Boardwalk neighborhood.

At the end of the sidewalk is the ocean.

So welcoming. 

A visit to Lucy the elephant before heading home.