Christmas and New Year’s

Hello, strangers! Yes, I’m still alive! As I was typing this post up last night, Cory asked if I was writing a blog post and when I responded yes he said “You still do that? I thought you quit blogging.” Ha!

I didn’t intend to take such a long break but I have sooo enjoyed it. Sometimes you just need time away from something {and lots of lazy days in sweatpants} to really miss it, right? I wasn’t even going to recap the rest of my Christmas break because like the worst blogger ever, I barely took any pictures. Normally, I’ve got hundreds of pictures to sift through from Christmas but I ended up getting really sick and didn’t even get my real camera out on Christmas morning.

Heck, I actually slept through Christmas morning. But I don’t want to forget this Christmas, sickness and all, so here a few pictures from the rest of my Christmas break!

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We spent a lot of time just like this, ya’ll.

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Before we headed out to Austin, we did Christmas with Cory’s mom’s side of the family.

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Christmas Eve

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On Christmas eve, we headed to Cory’s grandmother’s for Christmas with his dad’s side of the family.

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And by this point, I was pretty miserable. My eyes wouldn’t stop running and I had some awful sinus junk. Afterwards, we headed to my parents’ house where we help them play Santa every year so I had to suck it up and get to wrapping.

Christmas Day

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The only picture I got on Christmas morning. Gracie had picked out toys for all the dogs and even wrapped them herself. She has such a kind heart!

You guys, I woke up and got to see Gracie’s face when she saw what Santa had delivered and then crashed again until after breakfast and then for lunch, we headed to my aunt’s house.

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Later that evening, my sister and her family came to my parents’ house for us to exchange gifts and Carson was very curious about what he got!

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I crashed hard again that night and then proceeded to not get out of my pj’s for the rest of the weekend!

New Year’s Eve

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In the past, I’ve done really festive New Year’s parties but I still wasn’t feeling good {and had been in my sweat pants for three days straight} so we kept it really low key. Half of our normal New Year’s buddies were out of town so we had Allen, Tammie and Amber over for dinner and to watch Clemson in the Orange bowl.

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My real camera was nowhere to be found so I pulled out my selfie stick from Rwanda.

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Jessica and I have spent every New Year’s Eve together for as long as I can remember but they were at the beach this year so we had to Facetime instead.

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Einstein has managed to photobomb pictures from our last couple of New Year’s and we couldn’t let his tradition stop now! The last couple of years…

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2015

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2014

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And we ended our break just like we started it…lots of naps and puppy snuggles.

Speaking of puppy snuggles…this past weekend marked one full year with our girl. Charley has made so many improvements this past year. It hasn’t always been pretty but our lives would be so much less…eventful without her!

Thanks for welcoming me back and I can’t wait to share a few things I’ve been working on plus I promise to finish recapping our trip to Rwanda!

Happy week, y’all!

You can see our past Christmas recaps here!
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2013

Easter Weekend

Happy Monday! Our Easter weekend was full of family {since we are staying at my parents’}, a little bit of relaxation, and some work on our house. We were hoping we’d get moved back into the house today but it looks like it will be Wednesday before we can get back in.

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Apparently, staying at MeMe and Boo’s is exhausting. You know, playing outside all day and sleeping on the back of the couch is pretty exhausting.

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On Saturday, we headed over to the house to work on our DIY shutters and get the grass cut. We couldn’t go in, though, because they had put the finish on the floors that morning!

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Big boy got a much needed haircut. I’m ashamed of how homeless he looked.

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After a couple of hours of working at the house, we went back to my parents for pizza and a little fetch with the dogs.

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Easter morning at church with my best frann.

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After church, we had lunch at my aunt’s house.

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When we picked Stein up from the groomer on Saturday, they had a sign on the door that they’d be open on Easter. I thought to myself that it was ridiculous for them to be open. Why would anyone need to go to Petsmart on Easter?

Well, I went to feed the dogs Sunday morning and their food bin was completely empty. I guess Cory forgot to tell me that he used it all when feeding them Saturday night. I guess that’s why they are open on Easter. As much as I hate their employees had to work, my furbabies sure were glad to get Easter dinner.

How was your Easter?

this post is linked with weekending, manic monday, mingle monday, weekend recap

New Year’s Eve

Happy Monday, y’all! I started my day off with a healthy breakfast, the first day of C25K and an arm and ab workout from the Tone It Up girls…pretty productive if I say so myself. I’ll share more about all that tomorrow though.

Since I took Thursday and Friday off from blogging, I wanted to recap our New Year’s Eve.

Unlike last year, we kept things real low key to ring in 2015. Partly because Cory and I had to work this year but mostly because I still wasn’t feeling 100%.  I thought I just had a cold but after five days of the worst sinus pressure I’ve ever felt, I finally gave in on Tuesday and went to the doctor. Turns out, I had a nasty sinus infection and started a round of antibiotics and a steroid spray. Between feeling under the weather and working, I just didn’t have any energy to decorate {or even plan} a party.

Thankfully, our friends don’t need the decorations to still have a good time!

New Years Eve

This is the first year that Kaylen has spent New Year’s with us and she was so much fun! She was so proud of her outfit, especially her necklace.

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The Hensons were out of town for Christmas so we let Kaylen open her gift before everyone else got there.

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And Uncle Cory Ninja painted her finger nails. Bless it!

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We snacked on some good food, watched some football, shot off a few fireworks {which K loved!} and waited for the ball to drop.

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No one else I’d rather ring the new year in with!

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Allen had to show off his New Year’s attire. Pretty classy, right?

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And the boys wanted a picture just like the girls :)

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Mine and Jessica’s traditional New Years picture included K this year to which she was trying to show off her nails. This girl cracks me up!

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We love us some Allen and Tammie! This is the fourth New Years we’ve spent with them.

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My love. So excited to spend another year with this guy.

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And we can’t forget the furbabies.

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Cory thought he was to avoid the mess that is confetti this year but right before the ball dropped, I remembered I had a couple confetti packs left from last year. Good thing K can’t read because they had 2014 on them.

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Judging by the smile on her face, she enjoyed the confetti. A year old and all.

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And then she immediately wanted to clean it up. A girl after Uncle Cory’s heart.

When I woke up on Thursday morning, Cory had already cleaned up the  house {you can be jealous, it’s okay!} and we spent the entire day in our pjs, watching football. There were lots of puppy snuggles and cheering for Oregon and Ohio State. A lazy New Year’s day has kinda become our tradition and there’s no other way I’d rather start 2015!

Check back tomorrow to hear about my life goals for 2015!

this post is linked with biana.

Thanksgiving in Austin

We are home from Austin and our hearts {and bellies} are so full! I didn’t realize how much Cory and I needed a little break to escape the craziness of everyday life and couldn’t think of a better place to retreat than Austin with Caleb and Anna.

Even though we picked the worst possible time to visit, what with their busy work and school schedules, we are so thankful for the time we had.

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We headed to Atlanta Wednesday afternoon to catch a flight and what better way to pass the time  than with a little Elf, which is my favorite Christmas movie.

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We landed in Austin late that night and the airport was deserted! We couldn’t believe how empty it was the night before Thanksgiving.

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We didn’t check any luggage {Queen of Over-Packing over here} and somehow I got everything in my carry-on! I was extremely proud of myself and had to share my packing skills.

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We woke up Thursday morning and I Facetimed with my family while Cory and Anna started cooking.

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This picture just cracks me up. My Nana wanted to show me the new carpet in her bedroom and apparently Taylor was enjoying the softness. I promise it’s not a dead body!

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Cory and Anna did the majority of the cooking sooo…Caleb and I were just in the way a lot.

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Our poor ugly hard boiled eggs. None of us had ever made deviled eggs but apparently, we did something very wrong.

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But Cory did a great job on the ham…it was as tasty as it looked!

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Our impressive spread! Makes me want a plate just looking at it.

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The deviled eggs were actually really good, even though they look horrendous.

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Caleb, you had ONE job. Just slice the cranberry sauce. One job!

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But he totally redeemed himself with his awesome center piece.

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Caleb’s friend Josh joined us for dinner, since none of his family lived close. The guys had a good time discussing comic books and movies with him and he fit right in!

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I must say that I really enjoyed not going to five different places on Thanksgiving. We love all our family and hate not seeing them on holidays but as you can see, I didn’t even fix my hair because I knew we’d be hanging around their apartment all day.

I wouldn’t hate it if every Thanksgiving was as laid back as this one.

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After dinner, the boys went outside to play a little football City-Style–in an empty parking lot down the street.

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We ended the night with a little football watching until Cory and I decided to venture out for a little early Black Friday shopping. I was so excited for Cory to get to “experience” Black Friday but when we walked into Target at 10:30pm, there were no lines, no crowds and plenty of items still on sale.

What the heck?

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Friday morning Cory and I slept in while Caleb and Anna headed their separate ways for work and school projects {Anna’s in grad school at the University of Texas, in case I haven’t mentioned that}. Cory and I headed for lunch at Ross’ Old Austin Cafe for some chicken-fried steak on my Dad’s recommendation.

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Well thanks, Dad–it didn’t disappoint!

Funny story, Cory had filled up on leftovers before we left so he wasn’t that hungry and got a grilled cheese. When the server bought out our food, he said “I’m just gonna guess here” and set my plate in front of Cory.

Negative, Ghostrider–I’m the big eater today! It was as good as it looks and I finished the whole plate.

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We took a plate to Caleb for lunch then headed to downtown Austin to see the Capitol.

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I busted Cory taking a selfie.

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Said selfie.

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Paige the Pioneer woman. Ha!
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We spent the rest of the afternoon driving around and getting lost because Google maps did not want to work in Austin. I can’t tell you how many U-turns we made over the course of four days.

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After Caleb got off work on Friday night, we headed for mexican at Amaya’s.

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And I had the best tacos of my life.

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The next day, Cory got up early to hit some comic book shops around town that Caleb recommended. Apparently they turned out to be some kind of nerd Mecca like Cory had never seen. Also, please note the 27 selfies {not really} that my husband took. He said he wanted to “document” his part of the trip for the blog.

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Well done, Cory. Well done.

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Now we may not have bought season tickets this year, but that doesn’t mean we stopped bleeding orange. Clemson was playing their arch-rival and bitter enemy South Carolina on Saturday so no matter where we were, we had to find it on TV. Cory and Caleb had made plans to watch it online, but Cory couldn’t get the ESPN website to work.

Insert Panic Attack Here.

After fighting it for what seemed like hours, we gave in a went to a sports bar around the corner from the apartment. It turned out well though, because we were able to watch three games at once with all the TVs around us. Plus I got some killer wings and Cory had what he called the “best chicken and waffles he’d ever had”.

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The best part was that Clemson FINALLY won after a five-year losing streak to USC {last time we beat them, I was on the field cheering}! Seeing a win like that made all the frustration worth it.

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Our “Clemson finally beat USC” faces.

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Cory got a call from Caleb saying that his boss was letting him leave work early, so we picked him up and went out to his favorite street in downtown Austin for the evening. Everywhere we went was so unique and fun! The environment was so relaxed with live bands and fire pits and we had a blast just walking around, enjoying the evening with Caleb. Poor Anna had to stay behind and work on a project she had due.

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Please excuse the grainy iPhone photos.

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I was with boys the majority of the weekend and they could care less what I had on. I had to take advantage of a full length mirror even if it is a bathroom selfie. #noshame

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I promised myself years ago that as long as Cory keeps making stupid faces in photos, I’ll keep posting them hoping he will stop with embarrassment. It hasn’t worked yet, obviously.

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One of the best things about Austin: FOOD TRUCKS. Everywhere you go, there are food trucks and the food is phenomenal. If you ever make it out there, be sure to try some.

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Caleb’s degree is in Film, so he always knows the best place to see a movie. He told us we had to catch a movie at the Alamo Drafthouse, so on Sunday afternoon we went to the matinee to see the new Hunger Games movie. The Alamo Drafthouse is a really cool 50’s retro-styled place that shows current movies as well as older movies and independent films. While you watch, they serve food and drinks from a really professional menu. Definitely on the recommend list as well!

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This guy was selling ugly Christmas sweaters by the side of the road. Yes, please!

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We took the rest of the afternoon just strolling around and hanging out in Zilker Park, which is where the Austin City Limits Music Festival is held. It’s a beautiful park where people go to play frisbee, rugby, soccer, or just hang out and the dogs roam free!

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Don’t tell Einstein but Cory made a new friend named Petunia. And now I want a French bulldog.

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I’d never trust my crazy dogs to just run free without a fence. I’d be in constant fear that they would run into the street but all the dogs were so well behaved.

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We spent most of our time just people watching and saw some crazy yoga happening.

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I think they were showing off at this point.

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Pink ears- we’ve got to dye Einsteins ears sometime.

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We went out for our last dinner with Caleb and Anna at another cool place called The Punch Bowl in a shopping district called The Domain. Inside the restaurant/bar is an eight-lane bowling alley, arcade, pool tables, ping-pong tables, and a few other games.

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And of course I did some more extraordinary packing.

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So there you have our Thanksgiving trip to Austin! We had a fun time and it was great to get to see Caleb and Anna, but I’m glad to be home in my own bed with my pups!