Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 in Review.

I did and 2011 recap last year so I thought I would do it again.
I like looking back.

Traveled to New Mexico for NCAA tournament.
Made it to Kansas City for Big 12 championship.
Neil changed positions at work.
Sold too many mustache party supplies.
Took my parents to Gull Lake for the first time.
Started a second blog for New Year, New You Wellness program at work.
Redid 75% of all our floors in the house.
Planned a successful 5k.
Roomba changed my life (the robot vacuum I got for my birthday)
Neil met Sandra Day O'Connor.
Visited The Shanks in Chillicothe for the first time.
Paid off my school loans!!!! (and there were a LOT)
The Silhouette changed by little business.
Held the second year of BOUNCE summer camp for girls.
and too many beautiful, romantic, silly memories to count!

What a great year it has been!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Moran Family Photos.

It was decided that we would coordinate a family picture since we have not done one in years. 
So I set up my camera with the timer and ended up with some great ones!

What happened before this picture is another story in itself. You can tell that dad and Meg were laughing and Neil looks guilty. That pretty much sums it up.


This was a request from Meg but I like it because it shows each personality pretty well.

 And this was one of my favorites.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Minute to Win it Christmas.

With 80 people at my mom's house for Christmas, it can't be boring!
But we are also a competitive bunch. 
This year, I hosted a few MINUTE TO WIN IT games - Christmas edition.
We played boys vs. girls. I was hosting so I did not get pictures of all of them but here are a few.

Snowball nose: Without using hands you have to dip your nose in Vasaline then transfer cotton balls from one bowl to another. Girls won! Krissy was a cotton ball nose machine!

 Christmas Cliff hanger: Each contestant is to blow Christmas cards across the table and make it hang off but not fall down....yes, its as hard as it sounds. No points were given :(

 Gingerbread cookie monster: Start with a cookie on your forehead and without using hands, get the cookie into your mouth. She looks cute doing it but her husband shows what a winning face looks like.

 Nutstacker: using a pencil, you have to stack 6 nuts (like nuts and bolts) on top of each other. Boys won but it was close.

Hung with Care: two teammates have to get ornaments onto a ribbon using only their 
Also, the ornaments get smaller each time the get one on!
Neil and my sisters bf were nominated. They were great sports. And lets just say that from different angles, the ornament was not in view AND lots of pictures were taken!
 They got two.

 But the girls won! They got all three on with 20 seconds to spare!

We also played: 
Conveyer belt: With a long ribbon at their waists, two players must turn slowly to get an ornament from one person to another. Didn't get a picture but here is a video of the Blueprint if you are interested.

Ornament fan: a set of ornaments is set up on the floor and using a top to a gift box, must fan the ornaments into a taped off square. 
This picture is similar but not our own - source.

Ornament bulldozer: Wearing a headband with an ornament tied to a long piece of ribbon, the contestants must knock down paper cups.

Christmas family game night ideas.

This is a picture similar but not our own - source.
Great Blueprints and videos can be found here on YouTube by Blueprint Guy.

Monday, December 24, 2012

2012 Christmas Card

Merry Christmas blog family!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


I have been brought to tears a few times that I can remember in the past couple of weeks. That's more than I've cried in years! I tend to be a joyful person. Not many things bother me and I do not make emotional decisions (just ask my dad). He has always said that I should talk about how I feel and that sometimes logic is not enough. Growing up I held grudges, sought revenge, and used my "powers" selfishly. I chalked this up to my competitive nature. He often reminded me to forgive 70X7 times. My sister though, she wore her heart on her sleeve. And I always admired it. And though it seems we have switched places, I've noticed something recently...I'm softer. (I have also witnessed this phenomenon in they get older they soften :) )

Sandy Rock, A Man and his Family, witnessing battered women's stories and other tearful moments have make me realize that the harder life is the softer I must become. I think I have come to realize that softness is not weakness. It’s proof that I am alive. It sends me into action and prayer. And softness can be powerful. Afterall, water is soft, and rocks are hard. Over time- the water wins. Even the rock succumbs to water, eventually. With all the pain in the world, softness can only help, right?

Monday, December 17, 2012

Christmas Card Rejects.

I get pretty excited about Christmas Cards! Last year we gave pictures that did not make the cut (here), so I thought you might want to see again.

Treats are my trick in taking pet photos :)

Boys will be boys. He really wanted this one on the card...

Of course there is no bad picture of me....jk.
I just didn't want to reveal too much of the card :)
For those not on my snail mail list, I will post the final card after they have been received by family.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Dating in Dallas.

No, this is not a dating service for those in Dallas. It is a post about a random date my husband took me to in Dallas. We woke up on Saturday morning and headed 1.5 hours to Fort Worth to visit the Kimbel Museum of Art.

The architecture alone was pretty amazing. Every hall had rounded ceilings with a sliver of light.
We visited at a great time. They had all of their permanent collection out. Usually they keep some in an exhibit that you have to pay to see. Everything was free when we went.

There were many pieces of Mayan art which we have been drawn to after having visited many of the ruins in Mexico and Belize.

We are always surprised to just see a Picasso hanging around. There were a couple others, too. 
This one was "Man with a Pipe"
 We both loved this Monet. The colors were so vibrant and the description said it was done during WW2 and it seems such a beautiful work to be done in a time like that.

 This was one of Neil's favorite. It is by Caravaggio, a favorite artist. 
This painting is "The Cardsharps" and wow was it nice and so realistic. I had to keep reminding myself that these were not photos!

These were some of my favorites:
I was drawn to this one because of its ability to draw you directly into the center of the scene.

 "Girl on the Pier" was so colorful yet felt ominous.
 But this was my favorite and Neil was able to tell right away that I would like it. 
Which is interesting because I am not sure why I like it so much....
I like the grey, blue colors.
I like the architectural interest.
And I LOVE that the man is stepping out of the frame. 
So I guess all of it :)
 We had a great time admiring this true art. It was a great date! My turn to make the next date and this will be tough to beat!

As we left we realized that the Modern Art Museum was right next door. We did not get to go in but I immediately recognized this HUGE piece outside.
The artist is KAWS who started out as a graffiti artist. I have recently gotten read up on him.
"KAWS often explores Pop-culture imagery in his work, borrowing from existing cartoon figures, advertisements, posters, television, and film. Tweaking and manipulating these universally identifiable images, KAWS morphs the familiar into something new."
He also had a balloon float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. He is there until Jan 6th so I'm glad we ran into him :)

Happy Dating to you!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Homestead Heritage #2.

My parents were up here with Beautiful weather so we decided to visit Homestead Heritage. We have been there before but my parents had not.

It is a self sustaining community that focuses on some beautiful trades.
Pottery making
 Wood working. This is the leg to a table, chisled by hand! You can see part of the drawing down at the bottom.
 This is the gristmill but I just love the house.
It looks like something out of a movie with a working pulley at the top, too!
 This is my favorite though!  The craft of textiles. They make scarves, rugs, blankets, quilts, etc. Its so colorful in there and it is fully functional. When we were there, there were a group of retired women who just go and knit together and chat...a lot. They loved Neil. They were trying to convince him to take up the hobby of bee keeping.....I think not! I can only imagine the allergic reactions!!!
 Neil was in awe with this massive water catchment system!
 Of course they farm but this was pretty interesting to me. There was this small chicken coop in the middle of the garden ....
 with wheels! They lift from the front and move it around so they can fertilize new beds! Never would have thought of that!

They also have a restaurant that we had lunch at and it was sooooo good! The menu is not extensive and its a little bit expensive but it was good!

We spent a couple of hours there and then headed to the Baylor v. Kansas State game so it was a good day!

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Man and His Family.

My heart was broken Friday as I drove past a man holding a sign. This happens often. Waco has one of the highest poverty rates in the United States. But this one was different. He had his family with him. His wife and two small children. They sat just behind him as he shamefully held that sign. My first thought was for his children that they had to witness their father in that situation. Then I hoped that they would also witness strangers giving. And I gave. But as I drove off, it didn’t seem like enough. I turned back and got off to offer them some resources in our community. With clothes in a plastic bag, smeared faces, and humbled eyes, I approached them only to find out that we could not speak. Their language was not mine. In fact, it was not one I have ever heard. As we mimed back and forth and tears streamed down all our faces, we ended with a smile and a hand holding and a few burgers.

I have not stopped thinking about them all weekend. I don’t know their situation but to be a family on the street with small children, no English, and no money, I can’t imagine that it would be easy finding help or a place to stay or a job. I can only pray that they find refuge. This is the prayer I pray for the man and his family.

- Joshua 1:9