Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Time with Family

Merry Christmas everyone.

So far this Christmas has been going great. We arrived in Tennessee after a very long drive (through the night). We took a little nap in order to get us through the rest of the day.

We went to a CD debut party for one of the local folk bands up here with my parents. It was pretty interesting.

On the first day we arrived something happened that has never happened in my life. Our Christmas tree fell down. My parents had it up for about 2 weeks before we arrived. However, it decided it wanted to fall down. About 15 ornaments broke. Luckily, none of them had a lot of sentimental value. It was still sad however. We lost some that I had painted when I was a kid, and some that my mom painted. Luckily, we didn’t lose any baby’s first Christmas ornaments.

Anyway, we had a wonderful Christmas. We went to see the show “It’s a Wonderful Life” at a local theatre. It was pretty good. My only criticism is that the main actor was way too old for the lead female character. It definitely grossed me out when they had to kiss.

I have been also spending a lot of time on this trip researching life insurance, identity theft insurance, and local doctors. I also launched my new ministry blog which I hope to be able to keep up to date.

I have spent this trip just trying to get everything ready for busy season. I know that I will have barely any time to do anything once I get back. I am trying to get it done now. 

We also had fun decorating Christmas cookies. 

Christmas morning we got to open presents. There were definitely some neat gifts. I got everyone in my family Scentsys… which they loved!!

Ivan’s gifts included a Miles Austin Jersey, an NRA membership, and some guitar strings. I also got him a bike. In order to surprise him, we put a note on the tree which led him to other notes. The final note let him to the tree where the bike was. It was definitely fun. My parents got Ivan and me an Apple TV (which will be great for watching movies, since we are getting rid of our cable).

I got a bunch of pretty neat gifts. I got 5 new James Avery charms: an elephant (to represent the Republican party), a Starbucks coffee cup (to represent my love for Starbucks and my time on the NOAA engagement), a house (to represent our new house), ballerina shoes (to replace the other ugly ballet charm I had before), and a microphone (to represent my love for singing). Before I left I also got a gingerbread house charm to represent us decorating our new house for Christmas. J (Any excuse to get a new charm).

I also got some neat gifts from my parents. I got a signed book from a local author in the Woodlands called Capitol Hill Cooks. It is a recipe book with past presidents’ favorite recipes. I am in love with it! I can’t wait to get home and start trying them out. 

We have spent the remaining days just chilling because we have received about 2 ft of snow. Harmony had a blast running in it. 

It also gave us some time to drink cocoa, and just relax. 

I also posted another post on A Mighty Fortress Ministries, so don't forget to go over there. 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Mighty Fortress Ministries-A New Blog

Hi everyone,

If you have been a frequent reader, you have probably read that I have wanted to write bible studies. For years I have been doing Beth Moore bible studies. Ever since I was in highschool, I have wanted to do a similar thing (I have always wanted to intern/mentor under her :) ). In college, I started writing blogs that were extensions of bible studies that I was currently studying. I stopped doing that when my major got more intense. I have finally decided to start writing again.

I can definitely say this is a very unnerving venture. I am by no means and expert or a scholar. However, I pray that God will use me to help others grow in the Lord. I am hoping to build my resource library as I continue. Currently, I am just starting with my internet resources, my bible maps & timelines book,  my Strong's concordance, and my NKJV bible. I am hoping to add some commentaries and Greek/Hebrew resources.  As you will be able to see throughout the blog (in the future), I am extremely interested in eschatology and biblical timelines. I am hoping to integrate a bit of this throughout the studies.

Now before I write any more... here is the link...(click the picture)

Since, I will be in busy season from January-March at my work, I may not be writing much. I just wanted to get it up and started for the time being. Also, if you would like to suggest a topic or a book, please let me know by posting a comment on the introduction blog post.  Please also "follow" the blog if you want!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Dickens on the Strand and Moody Gardens

The weekend after the Renaissance Faire... We went to Dickens on the Strand and Moody Gardens down on Galveston Island. Kristin had left early in the week so it was just us and my parents. It was a pretty neat festival. I liked seeing all the people dressed up. The only thing that was bad about the event was the heat. I heard from some people who have been before, that USUALLY the event is REALLY cold. However, this year.. it was definitely in the 80s.  We still had fun watching the carolers and shopping.

 This was the parade that came though... It was pretty neat.
This is the Queen..... 
These are the Civil War re-enactors. This is a couple decades after the Dickens era and in the wrong country, however it was still fun to watch.

They were out there trying to recruit people to join their team.

Ivan and I really want to do this so we may sign up.

After Dickens, we went to see the Moody Gardens Festival of Lights. It was difficult to get pictures because the camera couldn't focus well in the dark. Either way, I am still glad that we attempted.

We basically walkthrough the lights, got some hot cocoa, and really enjoyed the evening.

 Yes... this was me goofing off... gotta love that awful face I am making. 

 They had this awesome nativity that lit up. There were like six different pieces that went with it. It didn't all light up at once though.  Basically there was a sound system that would tell the story of Christ, and as the story was told, different pieces of the nativity lit up. Every 10 minutes, the story would start again. It was VERY neat.

Here was the wise man piece that lit up 

As you can see, the camera had some issues. I love this humming bird. The wings fluttered as well.

My sister loves sponge bob, so we took these pictures for her, 

Gotta love Texas!

Texas Renaissance Festival

These last few weeks have been super busy. The weekend of Thanksgiving, we went to the renaissance faire. The Texas renaissance faire is the largest in the nation, so we HAD to go. We definitely had a good time.  Here are some stories of events that happened.

Ivan and Kristin (my college roommate) were busy playing all these games at the faire. The first one they tried their hand out was archery.

The next game that was played definitely "made the day". Ivan and Kristin decided to try their hand at throwing axes (definitely NOT easy).

Ivan then amazingly.... hit a star!!! 

Kristin also tried throwing the axes....

Since, Ivan got on a star he got a prize. The prize was a piece of paper that read "Free Kiss -from anyone willing". Well, Ivan didn't want it because he isn't going to go kiss some random person. SO, we gave it to Kristin. Little did we know what would happen....

We saw a street performer who was basically dressed in a pretty awesome centaur costume (you know half man half horse). Anyway here he is... isn't he pretty lol....

Oh yes... and what is that little card he is reading? is the FREE KISS CARD!!!!

Kristin is a brave girl... that is all I have to say!!!! This definitely did create a lot of laughs!!

We also did some shopping, got some yummy food, and met some more interesting characters

This is a tree person

 Kristin was NOT eating both those "cheesecake-on-a-sticks". She was holding them for someone else. But it was definitely a funny photo opportunity.
 This person's costume was amazing!!!!

LOL.. we found these medieval goblets.. this is  " Kristin act like an old drunk man"... haha  :) fun. 

 I also bought this corset... :) We took this picture with no flash because the flash was causing a shadow... so this picture shows how it cinches. The next picture is a better depiction of the color.


So this year, we have had a very busy Thanksgiving season. The week of Thanksgiving, my parents arrived and so did my college roommate Kristin. We all spent the entire Thanksgiving day cooking. I don't know if any of you know, but Ivan and I have been eating almost solely organic foods lately. Therefore, Thanksgiving was no different. I think the only "non-organic" item was the marshmellows for the sweet potatoes. Here is what we made:

-Mashed Potatoes-from scratch
-Green beans with turkey bacon and onions (Ivan and I don't eat pork so this was an alternative)
-Sweet potato casserole (made by Kristin... it was sooo good)
-Homemade stuffing (yes, I even made my own dried bread)
-An organic turkey
- An apple pie (which I also made from scratch).

My aunt brought: This AMAZING vanilla bread pudding, and homemade cranberry sauce which was super good! Here are some pictures:

 The turkey....

Me reading some recipe....

Stuffing the bird.

This is me finalizing the pie...

Here is the finished turkey :). I was pretty impressed with myself figuring this is the first turkey I have ever made. Last year we made a ham.

Here is us... ready for the food :). Yes, we forgot to take a picture of the table, and everyone :(. Booo.... well at least we have these pictures.

The day after Thanksgiving... we spent the whole day visiting my mom's cousins James and John Calaway. We also visited my great aunt Ivy. :) It was a very fun day. I think we were all ready for the weekend (which will be my next post).