Monday, November 29, 2010

Very Merry Christmas Cards

This year, I am longing to try out Shutterfly's holiday cards. It has been years since I sent out cards - the cost plus the need to have a good family picture have precluded it. But this year, I have an opportunity to get 50 free cards from Shutterfly, and I am going for it! (Although with Shutterfly, the cards are so cheap anyway that I might have done it!) They are offering the free cards to bloggers, and so here we are. 

There are so many great cards to choose from that it may be difficult to decide!!! I really like the message on this one, along with the use of pops of color:

I would love this one, maybe with a picture of the whole family in the middle and one of the boys on one side and the girls on the other:

And this one is just fun with the snowflakes and the colorful letters against a black and white photo, whether I use a family picture of one of just the kids:

Or, finally, this one, which is a folded card, and which I think is just so simple and beautiful:

I also like the gift options that Shutterfly offers, especially the calendars, which I am thinking might make a good gift for certain family members:

So there are my top picks from Shutterfly for this holiday season - what are yours? If you blog, head on over and fill out the form too! It is one way to make your Christmas a little merrier!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens

Let me start off by saying that I dislike the song whose lyrics are composing my title this morning. As a matter of fact, looking back to yesterday, I referenced another song from that production in my title as well. I actually do not care for that movie. I know what you are saying on the other side of your computer screens. "What, does she kick puppies too?" No, I don't. Well, except for that one time. But he was asking for it...

The reason I chose those lyrics for this post is not because I am thankful for raindrops on roses or whiskers on kittens, but rather because that song is composed of a seemingly unending list of what the singer's favorite things are, and after missing a few days of posting, that is what my list of things I am thankful for is starting to feel like. So let us catch up to today, before it gets any more out of hand.

Over the weekend, I came down with the cold that I have been fighting off in Anna for the last week and a half. It was inevitable, I suppose, but my 6th day found me grateful for health as I was saying goodbye to my own.

Sunday was the 7th day (how appropriate,) and the weather here was rainy and cold. I was thankful for the rainy day, when I was able to just stay inside, in comfy clothes, on my bed, fighting the cold and rading and playing Lego Harry Potter on the Wii (don't judge - it is an addictive game.)

Yesterday, Monday, day 8, I was thankful for being able to get up and make breakfast for my kids. Most mornings I work out early, and the kids have already fended for themselves by the time I get home. Since I was still kind of sick, I didn't workout, but instead made the kids French toast. (I hate French toast, but they love it.) They had bellies full of warm food, and that made us all happy.

That brings us to today - number 9 in the lineup. Today I am thankful for a combo - vitamin C, zinc, and Airborne. Thanks to those, and copious amounts of water, I am pretty much over my cold - a record 2 1/2 days in length - and was able to go to the gym this morning and run my first-ever 5K on the treadmill.

Ah, I am all caught up (can I be grateful for that too?) What are you thankful for?

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Hills Are Alive

Tonight, I get to do one of my very favorite things. I get to go and see one of my favorite bands play live in Sacramento. They are an independent band from Arizona, Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers, and they play at Harlow's, which means a smaller crowd than the big bands get, which means that if I choose, I can be right up in front of the stage. Typically, that is where I go, but the last time we went to see the band, Jon ended up feeling ill afterward, and came down with the swine flu the next day, which he conveniently blamed on being too close to the stage (something about his height and being too close to the speakers making it worse for him than average size people - have I ever told you that he blames everything on his height???) Anyhow, he has determined that he no longer wants to be up in the crowd, but rather back at a table where he can sit (does he sound old or what?) So we will see if I end up on the floor alone or back at the table with him - last time I was waiting near the stage before it started and Jon wasn't with me yet, and some guy complemented my shirt while staring at my chest. I'd rather not be alone in the crowd ;)

Anyhow, this all brings me to what I am grateful for today. I am extremely thankful for music. I LOVE music. I love to sing (I sang tenor in high school and was in a musical where I was a gospel singing nun.) I love to dance. Music makes me feel lighter and happier when I want to, or it embraces my melancholy when I need it to. I love lyrics and melody. If I had to make the horrible choice between being deaf or blind, I would have to go with blind, because to never hear music again would make my life miserable. So that is what I am thankful for today - what about you? Oh, and here is a picture of the guys I will be seeing tonight - I'm not sure the picture does him justice, but the lead singer is hot. Just an added bonus to how awesome he is live.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Jamie, I'm so glad you're mine

On my fourth day of counting my blessings, I am thankful for my sister-in-law Jamie, who came to save me today when my car ran out of gas on the freeway. If it were not for her, I would, at the very least, still be walking home. Not only did Jamie save me from possibly being picked up by a random trucker, but she has done many great and wonderful things for my family, besides the fact that she is just funny and fun to hang out with. She is more than willing to dance, sing, or just do other random crazy things, bringing some spontaneity into anyone's life. And so I am grateful for Jamie Sartain.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Sweet Child of Mine

I am finding so many things to be grateful for that it is hard to choose which one to use which day.

On day #3, I am thankful for my youngest, 3 1/2 year old Jonathan Neil Joyner. With the other three in school all day, he and I get to spend a lot of time together. He is extremely cute, just ask any of the women who he charms each week at church. He flirts with women shamelessly, at the store, the library, the school - any age, any shape and size - he is equal opportunity! Jonathan constantly tries to talk his way into/out of things, starting sentences with "How about" or "I know!" and raising his eyebrows repeatedly at you to try to get you to do what he wants. I am completely immune, unfortunately for him. Since being potty trained earlier this year, he is determined to mark his territory, asking me at every place we go "Do they have a bathroom here?" I have started telling him no, just because I can't take going into one more bathroom when I know he is forcing himself to go (he also has amazing control over that!) He can be cute and cuddly or independent and willful, and I love watching him figure things out each day. One of my favorite things is the fact that he can pick up almost entire songs the first time or two he hears them, and I will catch him singing parts of them while I am driving or while he is playing (makes you pay attention to what he hears - he was singing "Highway to Hell" from the backseat a while back.) I am thankful for all that he adds to my life and our family.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Thank you, thank you

Today as I sit at my desk, making phone calls for dental appointments, calling for support for our upcoming hospital stay, and checking in with family and friends, I am thankful for Mr. Alexander Graham Bell, inventor of the telephone. I know that there are days when I wish that the telephone wouldn't ring anymore (last night, when all the politicians kept "calling" me to secure my vote is a good example) and I long for a trip to a desert island where no one could find me, but this morning I find the telephone to be an invaluable invention.

What are you thankful for today?

Monday, November 1, 2010

Counting My Blessings

Somehow it is already November. I have no idea where it came from, or where the year has gone, but there it was this morning, waiting for me when my alarm went off. As we all know, the big deal this month is Turkey Day. Also known as The Day We All Eat Too Much. Or The Day Before Black Friday. Or, for some of us, The Day We All Get Dressed Up To Go and Fight With Our Families (I haven't experienced that one, but have heard stories.) But, officially, it is known as Thanksgiving.

This month, in order to keep  my blessings at the forefront of my mind as our family is going through some hard things, and in order to truly remember to give thanks for those blessings, I am instituting the 25 Days of Thanksgiving. Every day I will post something that I am thankful for. I encourage you all to do the same, whether you post it or not, just take some time every day through Thanksgiving to write down one thing that you are thankful for. Keep the list to look at when times are darker. Or if your times are dark now, use that time every day to find a shaft of light to follow. Surely in this world, where we are all alive and surviving, where we have food and clothes and roofs over our heads, we can find just 25 things to be thankful for.

So today, on the 1st of November, I am thankful for a body that is able to run (even if it doesn't like it) and then go and take a workout class without passing out or throwing up. What are you thankful for?