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Merry Christmas, Y'all! Things at my house are still going full speed in preparation for Christmas dinner and dinner with my folks tonight. I hope you too are anticipating a wonderful Christmas with your families!

As for me, the out-of-town packages have been sent and all the remaining gifts are wrapped & hanging out under the tree. The last couple of weeks have been a blur of crazy-business at work, decorating for Christmas, and finding something special for all my loved ones. This year, instead of spending tons of money and breaking the bank to buy gifts, I tried to remember that how much you love someone is not measured by how much you spend on them. This was hard for me because I feel the need to lavish lots of presents on everyone! But, I'm trying to keep in mind that Christmas is not supposed to focus on the number of boxes and bags under the tree! In that spirit, I fashioned several handmade gifts for a few of the people on my list. Y'all, I hope you like them!

I …

Maybe mice aren't always icky

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Remember how in one of my recent posts I told you all that I'm having fun with felt these days? Well, today I got to visit with my new-found friend for a good chunk of creative craft time. And since it is the Christmas season, what better to make than an ornament? Nothing, I say.

It also helped that I needed an ornament for an o-swap (sorry, tired of typing "ornament") that was occurring tonight. At a Bunco party. A game that I have only heard of in passing, yet not ever participated in. Which was actually really fun and not too taxing on my strategy-deficient brain. If I have to think about more than one or two things at a time while playing a game, then forget it. If I have to think about those things and-be-quick-about-it? Nah. I might as well hang it up!
So anyway, I spent a chunk of my time today with my friends the needle and thread. Oh, how I love them! My sweet hubby actually came up with the idea for this ornament. I asked him on Thursday night, "Sweetie, I …

I really must have too much time on my hands!

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Hello everybody! Guess what I'm doing right now? Sitting at home typing at you, that's what!

I'm actually supposed to be working today, but I was put on call this morning. And I called work to see what the possibilities of me getting called in were, and they said it probably won't happen. Woo hoo! Although, if I did get called in, I would be making time and a half. So, it's good either way, I guess.

Anyway, I've been playing around on the computer and I found the neatest thing! I get e-mails from Better Homes & Gardens about decorating ideas and projects. Through one of them, I found a little site where you can make your own virtual snowflake! It's so neat! And you can even add a Christmas message to it when you're done. If you want to go to the site and look up my snowflake, there's even a place to click on and find it! Ha! Who would've ever thought?! To find my flake, just type in my name (Ashlie, duh) and my location (Louisiana). Oh, and si…

Welcome back, December!

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Well, y'all, my blog is all decked out for the holidays, but my house has yet to get the same attention. Hopefully, that will change this evening. Hubby and I are gonna have chicken & sausage jambalaya for supper and then deck the halls. Should be fun with the local Christmas station playin' on the radio. And this year is going to be low-key as far as the tree goes. We had a real tree last year but decided not to get one this year. And I don't want to pay full price for a faux one, so I'm going to wait until after the holidays and try to get one on sale. Don't worry, though, we won't be completely tree-less. I have a topiary tree that I used in my wedding and I plan on sprucing it up for the season. I'm gonna try something different this year and make a Christmas vignette. I have a picture in my head of what I want it to look like. We'll see if I can bring it to life!I'm just starting to get into the Christmas groove. I just can't bring myse…
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Happy Thanksgiving to you!

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

You look like a turkey,

And smell like one too!!

I hope y'all have a wonderful day full of food, family, and friends. Don't feel bad about eating too much. God knows it's a requirement on this day, and therefore waives the rule about not being a glutton. Just for one day, though. What you do with the leftovers is on your conscience, not mine.That said...Eat! Drink (non-alcoholic drinks, of course)! And be merry!

This is the kind of thing you only hear about happening to other people

My family and I were side-swiped by a HUGE blessing on Friday.

The morning started out normally, until I read my mom's text that said, "Ash, call me as soon as you get up. I have a problem I need advice for." I immediately thought, "this can't be good." I mean, what does my mom need advice from her daughter for? She's the one with all the wisdom, right?

So, I called her right away and she said there was something wrong with her eye. A floaty thing in her left eye that darted back and forth when she turned her head. And she'd been seeing the floaty thing for about a day. Uh. Oh. A floater? That could be really bad news. When I had my Lasik surgery back in April, the doctor told me to call immediately if I ever saw any floaters because they can be a sign of retinal detachment. Which, hello! That can lead to BLINDNESS!

Why is she seeing a floater dart around in her eye, you ask? Well, she's had a monstrously bad sinus infection-slash-bronchitis for ab…

Yay! It's Kelly's Bloggy Baby Shower Day!

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Jenna, Faith, and Heather are throwing Kelly a baby shower today and we're all invited! Click on the link to Jenna's blog to mingle with the attendees!Kelly's blog was one of the first ones I found when I started my own blog about a year ago. Her cute layout and fun personality had me hooked from the start! I've been keeping up with her almost daily since I found her (she updates way more frequently than I do!) because her blog is such a fun place to be! There are yummy recipes to try, super-cute outfits to see, sweet friends, and encouraging words from the Lord. Even in the midst of a very real and very emotionally draining struggle with infertility, Kelly kept her eyes on the Lord and her faith in Him was unwavering. She claimed Ephesians 3:20 as her promise from God, "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us..."And we were all so ecstatic when she announced on her blog that …

It's her official debut, so be kind, please

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The sewing project I mentioned in my last post? It is done! Finished. Finito! I wasn't able to finish it before church on Sunday morning but I made a lot of head-way and got it done late that evening. Late, as in, 1:00 Monday morning! And I had to work, so I was going on 4 hours of sleep! It was so worth it, though! I have lots of pictures to illustrate the process (well, some of it. I got impatient) so lets get to it. I found an entire yard of zebra print suede-like fabric in the remnant section of Hobby Lobby awhile back. At the time, I had no idea what I would make with it, but I was 900% positive I could find a use for it at some point. This fabric was just too fabulous to pass up! Scrumptious, even! Then, at JoAnn Fabrics (I'm sorry Hobby Lobby. I'm not cheating on you, I swear! You'll always be my first love!) I picked up several fat quarters in various blue patterns. Once I brought these new pretties home, it hit me! A purse! I shall make a zebra purse with blue…

Achoo! God bless you!

Me, that is. God bless me since I'm the one sitting here trying not to sneeze and let nose juice run down my face.

We had a Sunday School party last night and the hosts had 2 weenie dogs, dachshunds is the proper name, I believe. Don't get me wrong, these little dogs were super cute and I would puppy-sit any time. It's just that some animals wreak havoc on my allergies. It's crazy, really, because I live with an enormous black lab and he doesn't mess up my sinusoidal cavities at all. And my in-laws have 2 cats, whom I couldn't even tell were there, when we stayed at their house for a week this summer. But you put me in a room with rabbits, or certain breeds of dogs, and watch out! Here come the wheezy, sneezy, snot works!

So naturally, by the time we left D & A's house last night, I had that deep-down wheeze goin' on that made me sound like a smoker begging for one last drag. And this morning I awoke to a constant tickle in my nose that has me keeping…

First Down and Found

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After my last post about the amazing concert we went to got a little long, I decided I should break that post up into a couple bite-size posts. I just didn't think that telling you about my hubby's first buck of the season went very well with tales of Christian band good-ness and starving children. Although, I'm sure those starving children would be very grateful for a bite or two of Nathan's grilled venison tenderloin...yum!!Yep, on his very first day out hunting this season he brought home a 10-point buck. The antlers of which are lying on the recliner waiting to find their new home on one of our walls. They've been cleaned, of course, and just need to be mounted on one of those antler-mounting-thingys you can get from Bass Pro Shops. He was so excited! He called me at 7:15 that morning and I just knew he'd fallen out of his tree stand or something. I don't think too clearly when being woken up out of a dead sleep, ok? I said, "Are you okay?!" a…

Unexpected Blessing

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A couple of weekends ago we got an unexpected blessing. A friend of our's called Nathan at work to say that he had 2 extra tickets to see Mercy Me in concert if we'd like to go. Of course we decided to drop all of our Friday night plans to go see one of the most popular contemporary Christian bands ever. Actually, we had absolutely nothing going on and it was a double blessing just to look forward to going somewhere. Sad, huh? We like to keep things low-key around here. We got to the church where they were playing in time to park a million miles away and walk uphill in the pouring rain just to get in the doors. No, not really. I would totally have made Nathan drop me off at the door if it had been pouring rain. But we did have to walk quite a-ways! Once we were inside, we found our friends and our seats, which were really good, and waited for all the wonderful-ness to begin. And let me just say that before we got to the concert, I had been having one of those blah days where I…

Excuse me while I get the sock fuzz out of my mouth...

Pleh! Blech! Pleh!

That's me spitting the fuzz out of my mouth from where I just about swallered my foot!

I hate when I do that. Stick my big ol' fuzzy-sock-covered foot in my mouth, that is.

Last night I stopped by the Circle K for an after-dinner treat (because we are fans of treats around here) and that's when it happened. I was standing in line to check out and noticed that the cashier was a young man with a very jovial personality. I was in a good mood, since I was getting a yummy King Cone, and thought I'd exchange some friendly banter with said cashier. I noticed that his name tag said "Semaj." See if you can tell where this is going.....

I jokingly said, "Is your name really 'James'?!"

**I know y'all have seen the silly names that crazy teenagers sometimes put on their name tags, right?**

The poor guy gives me a semi-pained smile and says, "No, it's 'Semaj'- James spelled backwards." What could I do but just give …

Not your everyday tag

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I've done tags before where I had to tell little-known facts about myself or things that I love/like/dislike etc. But this tag from JuJu required a little more thought. I'm supposed to tell 3 things that I love about myself! The three things can be physical or personality traits. I don't know about you, but this is kind of hard to do! I don't spend much time pondering what I love about myself. So, after a few days of mulling it over, here's what I came up with. 1) I love that I am a good listener and my friends (sometimes even strangers!) feel comfortable confiding in me.2) I love that I am sentimental and keep random things just because of who gave it to me or what the object meant to me at a certain point in my life.3) I love that I am dorky and have several quirks that make my husband and family roll their eyes. Life is more fun when you can laugh at yourself!!Okay, I'm going to pass this tag on to a few beautiful women. Take a few minutes to appreciate your…

Go rest high on that mountain, Daniel.

My heart is heavy tonight. This dear man went home to be with the Lord today around 4 pm. He fought a short but hard battle with cancer and won the victory today. Not in the way you might imagine, his body was not cured, but his spirit was set free. Free to be with Jesus forevermore.

I haven't seen Daniel in years but he's one of those people that you never forget. I'll always remember his huge smile and ready laugh. The sound of his voice raised in song is something I'll treasure forever. This was a man who made impressions on everyone he met. Impressions that last a lifetime. Go look at his blog and read the comments from all the people who love him, then maybe you'll get a sense of who he was. He was a man who deserves to be remembered.

He wanted everyone he met to know that Jesus loves them and died on the cross to give them a second chance at true life. And if he wasn't sure if someone was a believer, he'd ask! That is cause for awe in my timid mind. I …

The secret's out!!

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No. I'm not pregnant. Let me just squelch your excitement now. I'm talking about a project I was working on that I couldn't show y'all until now. You see, I made a Ragamuffin Garland to send to my sister and I didn't want her to see it before it arrived in the mail! That would have defeated my whole intention of sending her some unexpected Happy Mail. Once again, this is a copycat project, which I found on the ever-creative Darlene's blog. In case you didn't know, I am not above copying other people's creative ideas. We can't always come up with masterpieces on our own, now can we? Anyway, this was a super simple craft and really fun to make. I made one to send to my Sis and of course I had to make one for myself. I'm a little selfish that way. Our two garlands were slightly different but don't worry, I'll show you both of them! Remember to click on the pictures to enlarge them.Let's get started...I painted my wooden letters "An…