Saturday, December 31, 2011

new years eve

this year for new years eve, we made plans at the very last minute. jay was comparing notes with tony on their newest grilling escapades when an impromptu get together was formed. gotta love how men and their meat come together in celebration of a holiday. it just so happens that it was maloney's birthday the day before so lindsay brought a cookie cake and we surprised her by all singing happy birthday as she blew out her candles. here are some pics...tony brought over some ribs that he had grilled out earlier that day while jay smoked a boston butt, and grilled hamburgers and hot dogs for the kids. all of the munchkins played great together and it was too cute watching abby push greer around in the play stroller. next thing you know, everybody was rotating turns. also, another sweet moment was when greer sat beside baby jemma to play and enjoyed helping her put her binkie back in her mouth. it was like a game they were playing with each other. she's spit it out, he'd put it back. rinse and repeat. here are some pics...while the kiddos played, we enjoyed watching football and chatting it up all night. we wanted a group pic of the kiddos, but the only way to make it happen was to pile them on top of me and ask random questions as a distraction method. it worked and they even wore their new years eve hats. even baby jem-jem and the godfather. score. here are some pics...later in the night, the guys headed outside with some of the kids in preparation of shooting off some fireworks and letting the little ones enjoy holding some sparklers. haswell and greer bounced on the mini-trampoline for a bit while jay and tony continuously handed lylie a sparkler after sparkler and then it came down to her double fisting two at a time. she's fearless and talented like that whereas careful and cautious big sister, abby, watched from the back porch. here are those pics...lastly, it was getting to the point of being past everyone's bedtime. this is when we decided to open up some sparkling grape juice for the kids to enjoy why the parents partook in the real bubbly champagne. it was the first time for greer to have a sip of the sparkling grape juice, and he loved it. also, it was so funny and sweet to see the girls clank their glasses together and say "cheers!" i had no idea that they knew to do that. these little ones truly do love a good innocent celebration. here are some pics...all in all, it was a wonderful low key new years eve with some great friends and their kiddos. everyone left around 11-11:30pm because they were fading fast. that's how you know you're getting old when you can barely make it to midnight to bring in a new year. after the house was quiet and our girls were asleep in their beds, jay and i counted down the new year together and watched the ball drop on the tv as we kissed each other for not only traditional purposes, but for a good night. farewell 2011, you definitely had your ups and downs, but we are more than looking forward to a fulfilling, healthy, and happy 2012!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

playing with cousin hudson

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

wordless wednesday

so abby took these pictures on her camera and i gotta admit, they turned out pretty cute. also, i love the way baby jem-jem's eyes look in the first pic. still can't believe how the filipino gene was completely washed out with that one...

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

noccalula falls

over the christmas break, abby begged and pleaded that she wanted to spend her special one-on-one time with tita karmie since "it was her turn." that said, i called up karmie and told her of my child's request. she then tells me to send her over so that abby can spend the night and then they would go to either ruby falls or noccalula falls the next morning. in karmie's words, "depending on the weather, we'll go to chattanooga or gadsden. she won't know the difference either way...both are waterfalls." true. so very true.

so i drop abby off at her tita karmie's house where they make a fort in her den. check out those old school sports-themed bedsheets...awesome.the next morning they woke up to lots of rain, thus noccalula falls was named the adventure for the day. nonetheless, abby was excited. tita karmie told her of the legend of princess noccalula as they peered over the waterfall and saw the nearby statue. abby liked her long braids the best. if you're not aware of the story, legend has it that princess noccalula was arranged to marry a rich chief by her father, but instead was in love with a different man within her own tribe. instead of obeying her father and going along with the planned marriage, she jumps off the waterfall to meet her death and her troubles were over. not sure if a 5 year old can fully wrap her mind around that story, but oh well, some times disney is not much better. here are some pics...after their fun time at the falls, they decided to eat lunch at the waffle house since abby was craving eggs and grits. a girl after my own heart. also, i love that they took pics of this. all in all, abby had a great day with her tita karmie.

Monday, December 26, 2011

tita karmie and her favorite nieces

Sunday, December 25, 2011

the douglas family christmas

this year we offered to host christmas dinner at our house considering our usual traditional place (the family's restaurant: home field) had been damaged due to april's tornadoes and the city is still giving them difficulty with rebuilding. boo. hiss. so we wanted to make sure the family had a place to all come together and celebrate since "being together is the best gift of all."

thanks to the amazing help of auntie jess, preparing the food was easier than expected. jay woke up early that morning and started smoking two turduckens on his new green egg that he got a couple of weeks earlier in preparation of the holiday. i swear he grilled out nearly every night making sure he felt comfortable with the settings of his new toy. that man loves to grill out. thankfully, both of the turduckens turned out absolutely delicious. my favorite was the one that had the duck and dressing stuffed inside the turkey. here are some pics...lyla even helped spread out the french fried onions on top of the green bean casserole while jess and i set up and decorated the long table...we practically turned our den into a dining room and it worked out pretty great with just the right amount of chairs needed. here are some pics...once everyone arrived, we all stood behind a chair at the table, held our traditional english crackers (aka, goofy hats) while jay said the blessing, and then popped the crackers open to reveal a small little prize and a colored hat. it was then time to eat as everyone made their own plate full of every casserole imaginable. everything was sooo scrumptious deliumptious. here are some pics...after dinner, we broke down the tables and removed some chairs so that there was more room in the den for opening up presents. everyone bought something small for the kids while later the adults played a game of dirty santa. abby and lyla had so much fun dressing up in their new costumes and seriously tried on every single one. playing dirty santa was a blast, especially at the end when gracie swapped presents with jay so that i could ultimately have the massage envy gift card...i love that woman. here are some pics...so just when i thought i had my highlight of the night by winning said gift card, i was surprised again. auntie jess pulls something wrapped under the tree and says, "oh, we missed one...this is for you, kim." i looked at it and was confused. it said it was from santa. i knew i had already received a pair of boots from santa (aka, jay) so i wasn't expecting anything else. i tear into it. it's a pandora charm bracelet that i've been wanting for a long time, but only spoke of it once, months ago. i guess jay was listening. the charms he added to it were absolutely perfect. they were three little girls with each a beaded gem stone (abby, lyla, and jemma's birthstone). i loves, loves, loves it and never leave home without it. thanks, santa...you are so thoughtful and good to me. here are some pics...lastly, the night was winding down and it definitely felt like the best christmas we've had as a family together in a long time. the kids all played and got along great and the adults got to truly enjoy each other's company being that we were all within the same room the whole time. once everyone left, it made us realize how lucky we are to have such a strong support group on both sides of our family. and the fact the we keep growing is pretty awesome too. hope everyone had a very merry christmas. here are some pics...