2010 Photo Recap

It would be really nice if I wrote an actual post, but that’s just not going to happen.  Instead, you can watch our year progress in way too many photos.  Wishing you and yours the very best in 2011!

January

February

March

April

May

June

July

(Insert non-existent picture of Stephanie and I at her wedding here.)

August

September

October

November

December

I definitely think we’ve had enough fun and excitement to last for one year.  Bring on 2011!

Thankful

This year, we have so much to be thankful for…

Two lines.

Twins!

A healthy pregnancy.

A birthday for Evelyn.

A birthday for Charlotte.

A new daddy.

A new mommy.

A family.

A homecoming.

Sisters.

We are so very thankful for all of the joy that has come into our lives this year.  Especially the joy that comes from  my dad, who has been battling cancer for 10 years now, becoming…

…a grandpa.

It’s Christmas Card Time!

I love sending out Christmas cards every year, and I have to say that I’m more than a little excited to be able to send out cards this year featuring two of the most beautiful babies that ever lived!

I’m not the kind of person who writes a holiday letter, or even a personal message.  Maybe that’s tacky, but I send out a lot of cards, and I only have so much time.  So, I’m a huge fan of the photo card.  Past years, our photo card has featured cheesy pictures of our dogs.  Let me tell you…those photos were always a frustrating afternoon-long photo shoot to get!  This year, though, it’s all about my baby girls.

I used Shutterfly for the first time this year to create lovely birth announcements for my girls!  I loved that they offer a stationary card option so that you can easily write notes on the back of the cards.  I was really pleased with how the birth announcements turned out, so I’m very excited to use Shutterfly again for our Christmas cards!  They have such a great selection of photo cards that I’m having a hard time choosing my favorite!

I love the idea of this card instead of the traditional holiday letter.  Of course, my top 10 would all be about the babies!

This is another of my favorites!  I would love to do a pregnancy photo, a newborn photo, and a family photo.

Or, I could just go really simple with one gorgeous baby photo.

There really are just too many choices!  I guess I’d better figure it out soon, though, since December is next week.  Yikes!

So, what do you think?  Should I use one of these options, or do you have another favorite that you think would work for me?

Do you send out cards at Christmas?

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Bloggers can get 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly: http://bit.ly/sfly2010

Crucio, 2009, Crucio!

It’s no secret that 2009 was one giant sucktasm for me.  Seriously, I’ve never been so glad to see a year go.  Still, 2009 had it’s good moments too, so my 2009 recap will serve as a reminder of the tiny moments of shining light in the dark.

January: Family trip to the Caribbean!

February: Got an iPhone!

March: Knit awesome wrist warmers.

April: Snuggled with Kaya.

May: Celebrated 5 years of marriage.

June: Spent 24 glorious hours in Vegas.

July: Got my geek on at Harry Potter.

August: Renee‘s wedding!

September: Rufus was precious.

October: Took a crapload of self-portraits.

November: Awesome murder mystery party!

December: Found time to laugh.

Now that we’ve gotten that over with…bring on 2010!

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Have you voted for the 20sb Bootlegger Awards yet?  I’d really appreciate your vote!

Repost: I Still Believe…

This is a repost from December 2008.  Just a little reminder to myself of the magic of Christmas…

I remember the joy of believing in Santa when I was a child.  I remember my dad pointing out Rudolph’s nose lighting up the night sky on Christmas Eve.  I remember being too excited to sleep, yet somehow sleeping anyway.  I remember waking up on Christmas morning with my stocking at the foot of my bed (really a clever move by my parents to keep us kids in bed a little bit longer).  I remember sitting at the top of the stairs with my brother, the anticipation growing, while my dad set up the video camera downstairs.  In our house, Santa didn’t wrap the presents, and there was something truly magical in that moment when I was still on the stairs but could see the pile of gifts from Santa.

I was in fourth grade when I learned the truth about Santa Claus.  I went to a friend’s house after school one day, shortly before Christmas.  I don’t even know how Santa came up, but I remember very clearly her saying to me, “You don’t really still believe in Santa, do you?”  And she laughed.  I laughed too, “Of course I don’t.”  But the truth was, I did still believe.

Did I still believe that a man in a sleigh with magical reindeer flew around the world delivering gifts to all the world’s children in just one night?  Well, not really.  But, I also didn’t believe that Santa was an elaborate ruse thought up by parents.  I still believed in…something…but I wasn’t sure just what it was.

I went home and talked to my dad.  If anyone would know the truth about Santa, it was my dad.  Dad told me that my friend was wrong.  There was such a person as Santa Claus.  No, he didn’t fly around in a magical sleigh on Christmas Eve, but he had been a very real person.  That was the day that I learned about Saint Nicholas.  He was a protector of children and had a reputation for secret gift-giving, thus he became the role model for Santa Claus.

So, yes, at 29 years of age, I still believe in Santa Claus.  I believe in the power of giving to those we love and to those in need.  I believe in the power of one person to make a difference in the lives of many.  I believe in the magic of Christmas, and I cannot wait to share the story of Santa Claus and Saint Nicholas with my own children.

Merry Christmas!

Missing: One Christmas Spirit

Usually, Christmas is my favorite time of year.  I love sending out Christmas cards, buying special gifts for my loved ones, decorating the tree.  I love looking at all the Christmas lights as I drive down my street.  I love the way lights look in the snow.  Usually, I’m bubbling over with Christmas spirit.

I seem to have misplaced my Christmas spirit this year.  Has anyone seen it?

We didn’t put up lights on the house this year.  We bought new lights to replace old ones, but we just never got around to putting them up.  We just never felt like it.  Truthfully, I’m glad they aren’t up.  Lights on houses always makes me feel like it must be so cheery inside…and we aren’t very cheery this year.

We didn’t put the tree up either.  I have so many cute new ornaments, but no tree to put them on.  We planned to put it up, but we just were never in the mood.  Something about putting up a Christmas tree just felt wrong to me this year.  Again, I’m glad we didn’t put the tree up.  I think it would just mock me with it’s Christmas spirit, and I would want to punch it.

I did mail out nearly 80 Christmas cards.  Usually, I love getting the cards ready.  We torture the pups to get their pictures taken, and then I put the card together.  I mean, nothing says Christmas spirit like dogs in Santa hats, right?  It’s supposed to be fun.  Not this year, though.  I felt like every card sent came with a special announcement shouting “We’re still not pregnant, but here’s some cute dogs to distract you!”

I’ve tried watching Christmas movies, listening to Christmas music, baking Christmas cookies.  I’ve tried it all.  And still not a drop of true Christmas spirit.  So, I figure I’ll just keep faking it with the hopes it will show up eventually.

I guess we don’t feel much like celebrating this year.  Christmas is a time when wishes are supposed to come true, and our one wish is still ungranted.  It’s just too hard to be excited about gifts, and cookies, and carols when there is a hole in your heart.

If, however, while you are out and about, you happen to stumble upon a lost Christmas spirit, please send it my way.  I really would like it back.

Confessions of a Retail Widow

In case you hadn’t noticed, the holiday season is in full swing.  For most people, this means getting to spend extra quality time with the ones they love.  For me, it means I never see my husband.

For those of you who don’t know, my husband is a manager at a major bookstore chain.  Normally, it’s nice that he has flexible hours, and it really doesn’t bother me that he has to work on the weekends.  However, as soon as Thanksgiving comes, I lose all contact with my husband until after Christmas.

From Thanksgiving until the New Year, Ted works at least 6 days a week.  I won’t even talk about how many hours a day he works.  Often, he is either gone before I wake up so he can get to the store by 5 a.m., or he’s closing.  During the holidays, the store is open until midnight, and he works until one in the morning.  I am sound asleep by the time he gets home.  It sucks.

Certainly, there are nights that he’s home, but the holiday season is a busy one, and it seems I always have something going on when he’s actually home.  For example, last Thursday night Ted was home, but I had my work holiday party after school.  We still had not actually spent anytime together since finding out we were not pregnant.  It’s all kinds of lame.

So, while you are out doing your holiday shopping, remember that those people ringing you up belong to someone’s family.  When you are running into the store at 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve begging the manager to stay open just a few more minutes, remember that those employees are missing Christmas with their families so you can buy a gift.  And when you are standing in a long returns line, remember that the employees have had just one day of rest before coming back to help you out.  Be sure to give them a little holiday cheer rather than your bah humbugs!

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

So, if you really are the awesome magical being I believe you to be, you already know my Christmas wish.  I realize, though, that you probably don’t carry babies in your sleigh or slide down chimneys to impregnate infertile women.  Yeah…that would be weird.  Truthfully, I’m not in the holiday spirit at all, and I really could care less about presents, but presents are better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.  So, this year for Christmas, I would like…

Awesome USB Robot Owl.  Seriously, I might die if I don’t have this!

These gorgeous plates of scenes from London.  I need them.

Silver Swirl Leaf Necklace.  So pretty!

Cute wellies to keep my feet dry.

That’s really all I can come up with.  Hope you have a safe journey, and that you aren’t stressing out too much about getting the toys made!

Love,

Erin

p.s.  I really do feel that I’ve earned extra presents this year.  Do you know how many times I’ve had to take off my pants at the doctor’s office this year?

Christmas Card Photo Session

Now, I know you all love puppies on a Christmas card.  Who doesn’t?  Let me tell you, though, that it is no easy task getting two pups to cooperate for their annual holiday photo.  This year, instead of trying to get one photo of both dogs, we decided to photograph the pups separately.  It worked out well, if I do say so myself!  You’ll have to wait for your card to see the winning photos, but here are some of the rejects…

Thankful

Happy Thanksgiving!  This year, in spite of everything, I have a lot to be thankful for.

I’m thankful for my amazing husband who works hard every day and comes home and puts up with my crazy self.  He is the glue that holds me together.

I’m thankful for my two sweet and cuddly pups.  I couldn’t ask for better dogs.  They put a smile on my face every single day.

I’m thankful for my job, money in the bank, and a roof over my head.  I’m so grateful that we are able to buy the things we need and the things we want, especially when so many people are struggling.  I’m thankful that we are able to give back to those in need.

I’m thankful that my dad’s PSA has dropped from 600 to 400.  I’m thankful for the time I get to spend with him and the rest of my family.

I’m thankful for my health insurance that allows me to do my fertility treatments without worrying about breaking the bank.

I’m thankful for medical technology that helps keep my dad alive and is helping me to make a baby.

I’m thankful for the nurses who laugh, cry, and hold my hand on every step of this journey.

I’m thankful for my hard working little ovaries.  Right now I’ve got several follicles (20, 20, 17, 16) that are ready for our double IUI Thursday and Friday.

I’m thankful for this little blog, and all that it has brought me — laughter, solace, release, and friendship.  I’m thankful for all of you who read and support me.

I’m thankful for the life I live — the joy, the hardship, the everything.

What are you thankful for this year?