Friday, November 30, 2007

Getting Decorated!!

I'm almost finished with my Christmas decorating. I've finished the kitchen and just need to get the big tree up in the living room. We are having a fresh tree this year so we'll wait until next week to get it. I think we're going with a Douglas fir. So fragrant and Christmasy!

I'll try to get to the front porch tomorrow when the boys can help me drag garland out of the storage shed. Lynn will do the lights whenever he gets a few minutes. I love the look of our house with Christmas lights and garland and the candles that Dad made us lining the street. So festive! Our house is very small, so it reminds me of a little Christmas cottage when it's all decked out.

I'm planning to get our bedroom done either Sunday or Monday. We'll see how that goes!

Hope all of your decorating plans are on schedule. What a great time of the year!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Christmas countdown banner

Miller Holiday Goals

Here's a list of things we want to do this holiday season. Some of the things we do every year, and some are things we've always wanted to do and never seem to get around to doing.

1. Jingle bell journey-send the kids to bed at the regular time...then sneak into the kitchen and pack some snacks and thermos of hot chocolate to take with us...get the kids up and wrap them in warm blankets...hop in the van and tour the city looking at Christmas lights!
2. Ice skating at the outdoor (temporary) rink at Hot Springs-we'll try to do this on our way home from Becki's Christmas party on December 22.
3. Our town Christmas parade and visit Santa in the gazebo. I take a thermos of hot chocolate for the kids and coffee for Lynn and me and make everyone wear Santa hats and ring jingle bells.
4. Caroling party. I'll be posting details about this later. I think this would be great fun. Our family used to do this on Christmas Eve and it was lots of fun.
5. Shopping trips-I want to try to take the boys one at a time shopping for the other two, then out to lunch or ice cream. I don't really know when we'll fit this in our schedule, but I'd really like to do this again this year. We do it at school clothes buying time, and they seem to really like it. I already have gifts for Benjie and Jonah from Jacob, so maybe we'll just go to a movie instead of shopping on his day!!

That's all I can think of today, but I'll be adding to this and hopefully checking some things off as we go!!

Catching up!

I was scolded twice over the Thanksgiving holiday for not updating my blog more often. Nice to know that someone is reading it!! Ok, Michael and Becki, I'll try to do better!

We had a good, peaceful holiday. We had a wonderful start to the Christmas season-Benjie was saved on the Sunday before Thanksgiving and joined the church on the Sunday after Thanksgiving! Praise the Lord! I woke up Sunday with a pinched nerve (self-diagnosed) in my neck and was not able to attend church that day. I was sorry to miss it!

I am currently trying to get the house decorated for Christmas, but have been slowed considerably by my neck problems. I have managed to get one small tree put up in the kitchen, but had planned to be almost done by now. Today I'm putting the snow villages up, but not as I'd planned. I had planned to put the big village on top of the cabinets, but now I'll put them in the "chicken coop"-a small yard sale find that normally houses 6 or 8 chickens and roosters. I don't think I'm quite up to climbing on top of the counters to put it on top of the cabinets!

I love the tree I have managed to get put up. It's a 4' white tree with white lights, red and white balls and black satin ribbons. I'm adding in black and white checked bows and redbirds. I think it's coming together nicely.

Benjie and Jonah will each have their own trees this year. Benjie wants (here's a big shock) John Deere and Jonah has finally settled on a red and white football tree. That should be easy enough to put together.

Jacob has his Coca-Cola tree-small tree with white lights and Coke cans tied to it with red curling ribbons! It's really cute.

Our room is going romantic/Victorian/French Country! I'll post pictures here and on my Photobucket account as soon as it's all done.

We'll be using multicolored lights outside-but that's a job for Mr. Miller!! I'm not allowed to climb ladders-Lynn's rule!

I love this time of year. I hope to be able to do several things this year that we have always planned, but never got around to!! Tomorrow, I'll post a list of activities that we want to do this year! Maybe some of you will get some inspiration or have suggestions or advice on other things to do that we haven't thought of!

Until tomorrow!!

Monday, November 19, 2007


This is one of my favorite weeks in the year. Although I consider Labor Day the beginning of "Cathy's Holiday Season", things really kick into high gear this week!

My kids are out of school from Wednesday on. I've been trying to think of things to keep them busy while I prepare for two Thanksgivings. We'll eat with my family-all 50 or so of them-on Thursday, and then host Thanksgiving for Lynn's family on Saturday. I like both celebrations. We'll have similar menus at both parties-turkey and dressing of course, along with ham, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans (made southern style with bacon and onions and cooked all night long in the crockpot. Yummy!) and all kinds of other stuff. Desserts will be a close second to the turkey as the star of the day. I am making a pumpkin gooey butter cake to take to Mom's and a strawberry cobbler for our house. Benjie has commented that he loves strawberry shortcake any time of the year, so I guess we'll have one of those as well for one of the celebrations. Or maybe both.

I wish everyone could be with us on this holiday of gratitude. I miss my Arizona auntie and cousins, and my Florida and Georgia cousins. When I get rich, I'm going to have a huge Thanksgiving celebration and fly everyone in, and then have the parts that I don't like to make catered. I like to make pumpkin gooey cakes and strawberry cobblers!! And strawberry shortcake!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you have much to be grateful for, and that you are suitably grateful!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Happy Birthday, Braylen!

Happy Birthday, Braylen! My great nephew is 1 year old today! He's exceptionally smart for 1-he can say "love you", point to himself when asked "Where's Bray-Bray?" and signal "touchdown" when prompted. He is such a blessing to our family! He has been great therapy for us since my dad died last spring. You just can't be in a bad mood around him very long...he's always got a little gap-toothed smile just when you need it most. His mom has always been the same way! Have a good day, Bray-Bray! Have a vanilla wafer and go crazy!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Making a Joyful Noise

It's only 16 days until Thanksgiving here in the US. I love this holiday. It is one of the few days of the year that has as it's focus God's blessings on us. Yes, there's lots of food, football and fellowship, but the bottom line is the day is to thank God for everything He's done for us in our lives. We should do this everyday, but I think we tend to forget sometimes.

At our church, we have a tradition that I especially enjoy. On Tuesday before the holiday, we have a church wide Thanksgiving service. Our kitchen crew prepares a full turkey day meal-ham, turkey and dressing, potatoes, sweet potatoes, green beans, salad and dessert, along with homemade yeast rolls. Oh, yeah! It' a wonderful time of being together with our church family and sharing God's bounty.

After dinner, my favorite part-even better than the pecan pie-begins. We move from the fellowship hall into the sanctuary, and the many, many talented people in our church take turns presenting musical praise. I love this part of Thanksgiving. The list is sometimes very long-30 or so people, or not so long, but it is always wonderful. Last year, my middle son, Benjie sang with my friend Melissa. They sang "Jesus Loves Me"-all 4 verses, and it was so sweet! Melissa has an amazing voice. I love to hear her sing, and she was so patient with Benjie. What a friend!!

This year, my entire family will be singing! Lynn (my husband) and Benjie can actually carry a tune...the rest of us will be warbling along! I absolutely cannot sing, but I promised them that I'd get on the stage with them IF I don't have to use a microphone! It's going to be scary for me, more so for those listening to me! It will be fun, though, and I'm trying to remember that God just expects us to "make a joyful noise!". Hope everyone else remembers that, as well! It will be joyful, just not on key!

Friday, November 2, 2007

Getting reacquainted with an old friend!

I recently stumbled across an old friend and have been delighted to get to know her again. It's Victoria magazine. I loved that magazine years ago when I was living a Victorian era house, and although my tastes have changed considerably, I still think it's one of the most beautiful magazines on the market. The pictures are exquisite, and the current issue is the November-December issue and has Victoria's trademark Christmas tree on the front. It is beautiful. The magazine is on newstands now, or you can check it out at

Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!