Thursday, December 29, 2011

Elf on the Shelf and Front Door Decor

I've taken a leave of absence from the blog lately. Well actually from the computer altogether and I must say, I've thoroughly enjoyed it. I've been off of work since December 14th and haven't really felt like I've had much of a vacation until yesterday. Deuce and I went to VA to visit my dad for a few days and when we came back, we hit the Christmas shopping hard. I was up past 2am every night through Christmas night and up and on the move by 9am each day. There was no time for blogging, I checked my email through my phone and only rarely checked in on my facebook. So I have a lot of catching up to do. I haven't even loaded my pictures to my computer yet. So we'll see how much posting I get done. I don't go back to work until January 3rd so hopefully I can utilize the rest of my time wisely.

We started the Elf on the Shelf tradition this year. I decided not to "adopt" the real $40 book & elf that I knew would be torn up in our house and opted instead for the $12.99 stuffed elf that would be safe if some littles happened to get their hands on him. {I knew TJ would figure out a way to get his hands on him even if he wasn't allowed to}. Although I wanted to give him some sort of quirky, holiday name like "Wink" or "Snowy", I left the naming up to TJ and he decided on Alfie. Deuce was the first to get a hand on Alfie before he was given his name and you can see how attached he became. I let him hold the Elf until he was named and became "magic" and he was stuck to him like glue, snuggling him, giving him hugs and dragging him around by his legs. You can see how well it went over when I took him away. So on December 1st he made his first official appearance on top of the entertainment system. The boys really enjoyed looking for Alfie everyday and were really sad to say goodbye on Christmas Eve. I have a picture of Deuce waving goodbye, but it's not on the computer yet, of course. Alfie made appearances in the bathrooms, the boy's bedrooms, the kitchen, the plants, in the Christmas tree and even in the freezer. TJ found him in the freezer holding a chocolate bar. :) They are already talking about Alfie making his appearance next year.
The wreath pictured above was actually made with the intentions of hanging on the front door. I made it with a wire hanger and cheap dollar tree ornaments. I was really excited with how it turned out, until I realized that it wouldn't fit between the glass door and the main door to the house. The glass door wouldn't close. So I decided to hang it over the mantle with an old frame and I taped all of the Christmas cards to it as they came in. I decided to stick with the frame idea for the front door by creating an alternative to the wreath, using supplies that I already had or from the Dollar Tree {except for the frame that was from goodwill}.
I got the frame for $5 from goodwill. I removed the print and the glass to leave the frame open. I used a gray primer and then a coat of silver spray paint. I attached four ornaments from the Dollar Tree with my staple gun to the back of the frame and then tied a bow, using a roll of ribbon also from the Dollar Tree. Then I hot glued the "Peace" sign on to the lower left corner. I love the way it came out and for a total of $10? Heck yes!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hales Family Reunion

So I'm going back a few weeks to catch up. Back in November was my grandmother's family reunion in Micro, NC. And yes, it's called Micro for a reason. There is a stop light and a gas station. My grandma's house is literally right next to both. Plus there are train tracks that run on the other side of the stop light and the Amtrak comes through like every 15 minutes. I remember thinking as a kid that I would never get any sleep at grandma's house when I spent the night there because of that durn train.

The reunion is held every fall at the fire station and we haven't been able to make it for the past several years because it's always scheduled on the same day as a Carolina home football game. This year, it fell a little later and on a bye week so we were good to go. Deuce and I headed to Raleigh to pick up my sister and then went on down east to Micro. We all made side dishes (I made my super famous baked macaroni & cheese) and the meat was brought in from Smithfield's Chicken & BBQ. Oooh wee! My stomach is growling right now just thinking about it.

The fire station was plenty big for Deuce and his cousin Weslee to run around and play basketball and football. Weslee just turned 3 and he was so perfect with Deuce. They chased each other all over the fire station and played catch. My dad was in heaven.
After the reunion was over we headed back down the 100 foot section of road to Grandma's house. Deuce and Weslee continued their play fest running in circles at Grandma's house. They went into the kitchen and got really quiet and when I went to check on them, Weslee was showing Deuce how to eat those cheese and cracker things that come with the little red, plastic spreader. Deuce had stripped down to just his pants at this point and they were so cute together. Deuce was looking up at Weslee like "I'm going to do everything you do." It was hilarious.
sorry, i took this one with my phone but i had to get him flexing. you know....

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


This video is a few weeks late but I still wanted to post it. The Saturday after Thanksgiving was the 2nd Chapel Hill HS Alumni 80s v. 90s basketball game. Ed and his brother played against each other again and I had a great time seeing old friends.

After the game was over, all of the kids took to the basketball court to shoot around.
There was a DJ and Deuce couldn't decide if he wanted to play ball with Chanler and Jalen, or dance...
And I'm not sure who the kid in the skinny jeans are but I would have walked away from him too for having those pants on if I was Deuce. He ought to be ashamed of himself for cutting off his circulation like that!

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