2011 Year in Review

2011 has been a year of change and an abundance of blessings.  Here is our year in review in pictures:
We rang in the New Year with family in Gatlinburg and had fun playing in the snow. We also got an offer on our house and had a big move ahead.
February was a blur as we were knee deep in a remodel busy stripping wallpaper and countless hours of painting. We said goobye to our home and moved into a new one.  Although it was harder for me emotionally than I thought, the change has been great for our family.
We spent March unpacking and finishing up on remodeling.  We loved spending time outside on the warmer days in our new yard.  We celebrated St. Patrick's Day with a green meal and tried out geocaching.  We also welcomed Michaela's new baby, Casen, to the family.
In April, construction on the tree house began, Landon and I ran in a 5K in Lebanon, the boys started ball,  and we celebrated Passover and Easter.
In May, Bobby and Sara said "I Do",  we had fun at the park, had a homeschool track and field, had quite a mishap including paint and my van, and celebrated Memorial Day with family and friends.

We made tie-dye shirts, went to Deeper Still, Dollywood, and made some cool superhero capes!
Also in June, we had our prayers answered.  We found out we are expecting!
In July, we went to Indiana to celebrate the 4th of July, went to the Treehouse in Crossville, the Art Mill, and All Nations Camp.  Landon and I celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary!
In August we swam,  Landon ran an 8K, and Logan started 2nd grade.
In September we went to Indiana for Labor Day Weekend, went to the fair, played at the sandy park, had a play at church, and found out we are having another boy.
In October, we ended our trip to Disney World, then headed to the beach.  I turned 32 and Lucas turned 5 and we had a great time celebrating Halloween.

In November, Logan participated in the homeschool International Fair, we went on a nature walk, and we celebrated Thanksgiving.
December was a busy yet wonderful month.  We had fun with advents, making our Christmas Story Christmas card, having a Christmas party, performing in our Christmas play, seeing where Ralphie was each morning, and of course, Christmas get togethers. 

We are looking forward to what 2012 holds! Happy New Years!! 

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away;
behold, all things have become new.  2 Corinthians 5:17


Angry Bird Cupcakes

Jamie, my friend, came over before Christmas one day to work on making some gifts.  I showed her a couple of ideas I had found for Logan's birthday party.  When she saw these cupcakes, she insisted that we make them. She said she would help, so I agreed.  It was a little intimidating to me because I hadn't ever done anything like this before and I didn't want them to turn out like this:

Sometimes a project just doesn't turn out like you planned on but I thought ours turned out really well.

Here's what you need:

1.  Cupcakes (I used a confetti cake mix)

2.  Icing (I used a generic brand of cream cheese icing)
3.  Food coloring.  I got this at Hobby Lobby.  Regular food coloring won't work because you won't
     be able to get a bold enough color. 

4.  Colored sugar, also from Hobby Lobby.  I didn't use near as much as I thougth I would.  I didn't
     even use a fourth of this bottle.  I recommend getting a smaller bottle of this.

5.  Large and small marshmallows
6.  Orange slices
7.  Mini chocolate chips
8.  Black licorice.  The example we looked at used string licorice, but I couldn't find any.  I used black
     Twizzlers, but they were hard to cut up.  If I were to make them again, I would try to find it like      

How to steps:

1.  Make your cupcakes and let cool completely. 

2.  Pour icing into separate bowls.

3.  Add food coloring to icing and stir.  Add more if you want a darker color or icing if you need it   

4.  Frost cupcakes.

5.  Pour sugar into bowls and put cupcake upside down to coat a layer of sugar on top. 
I thought this was brilliant.  I would have made a mess with the sugar trying to sprinkle it on top.  Also you don't use as much this way. 

6.  Cut marshmallows.  The large ones need to me really flat.  I cut one into four slices.  The small
     ones were just cut into two pieces.

7.  Cut orange slices into thirds.  Also, we thought they were too tall and ended up cutting them into

8.  Place large marshmallow on the red and blue cupcakes.

9.  Place beaks on cupcakes.

10.  Place mini chocolate chips into the small marshmallows. 

11.  Jamie put some icing to hold the eyes on better. 

12.  Place eyebrows and you're finished!

Logan's Birthday

For the last year Logan has said he wanted a skating party for his birthday. It was really difficult to schedule his party this year around his actual birthday so we ended up having it after Christmas instead. 

I still like to do themed birthday parties for them to make it special for what they are interested in at the time.  This year, the theme was Angry Birds.  Both boys love the game and play it often on Landon's Ipad and my phone.  I found some great ideas from pinterest, including the birthday invitation.  Seriously, this is my favorite invitation EVER.  I am not a professional, so you can tell it was photo shopped, but I still love it!
Amber Weatherly made the awesome hats!!  It makes me want to learn to crochet, but I don't have time for another hobby. 

I always pay someone to make my birthday cakes but since it was so close to Christmas I had trouble getting someone to make it.  I had to make it myself. 

I was impressed with how the cupcakes turned out.  Jamie Sullivan and I made these.  Click here to see how to make these.
Vicky Brady made the cookies.  They were so cute!

Party Favors:
I am no artist, but these weren't hard to make.  Click here to see how to make them yourself.

Lucas decided it was easier to skate with his hands instead of his feet.
This was so fun to watch all the kids skate, but even more fun to watch all the falling.  I can't help it, but when people fall in my presence I laugh.  So this party was really entertaining.  Michael posted a funny post on facebook last night, "Just discovered why parents like to have skating parties for their kids. So adults can stand on the side with a sinister smile while they watch their kids fall all over themselves like idiots...AND THE KIDS ENJOY IT."

Logan got a magic set from Santa.  He has been working on some tricks and wanted to do a show for everyone at his party.  He has a little work to do to get them down, but he has had fun learning them. 
I should have done this picture earlier before other moms left.
I can't believe he is 8!!!