Saturday, January 22, 2011

family things

well, if you've been reading/following my blog for a while, you'll know i went through some major family events these past two years.

two years ago in March i lost my first grandparent. Gramma Grace Mason, whom i am named after, passed away. she wasn't sick but more so passed from old age. it was a sad event, even more so because my dad's family is all in England so my sister, mother and i were unable to attend the funeral.

around this same time, my mom's mom, Gramma Betty Koos, had a major decline in her health. she had been suffering from lung cancer and passed away in June of the same year. it was a major struggle because we had to deal with weeks of declining health, amazed that she kept hanging on.

about a month before Gramma Koos's passing, we found out about health issues for Papa Dick Koos. about a month after Gramma died, we found out he, too, had cancer. he passed away last February. although his battle with cancer was much shorter than my gramma's, we were happy he wasn't in pain for as long.

a month after Papa Koos's passing, my beautiful niece Chloe was born. we are sad she never was able to meet our grandparents; however my brother-in-law's grandparents have had the pleasure of meeting her, and she has brought such a joy to our lives.

several months later, as you should recall, Josh and i got married. it was sad not having any of my grandparents there, but i am blessed to have two new grandma's on Josh's side. Josh's Gramma Julie is very strong in her faith and i know my Gramma Betty would have gotten along with her so well.

here we are, 2011, and unfortunately starting off the year sad. my dad's dad - my last grandparent - passed away last Friday, the day before my dad's birthday. he was not really sick, just passed from old age and natural causes. he was almost 88, i think. he had a great, full life with wonderful, caring children. my dad will fly over to England for the funeral in a week.

i have been incredibly blessed to have two sets of God-loving grandparents, both married for 50+ years, to set amazing examples for my parents and my sister and i. although they are gone, we believe they are celebrating in heaven - cancer-free and in new bodies not affected by old age. they were all amazing, and i miss them every day. we are comforted knowing we will see them again.

2006 - last time i saw both my dad's parents

granddad + gramma mason, 2006

dad, nan + granddad, 2006

Friday, January 21, 2011

fun things

in fun news...i have my first residential "consult" tomorrow. i'm going to help a family from my small group/church in coordinating a few things at their new house. i'm excited! i'm grabbing a paint deck now so i don't forget.

also, i want this pillow from target. however, i don't think Josh is a big fan of accent pillows (also, it's sold out. also, probably too expensive for a pillow).

Monday, January 17, 2011

birthday cake

so, i made this (also here, here, here...) delicious cake for my dad's birthday on Saturday - "Perfect Party Cake." unfortunately i have no pictures, but i'll share my experience none-the-less.

i first saw this cake on Cafe Fernando's blog (i love that blog), and i knew my dad would love it for his birthday. i didn't have many mishaps with the cake, however it didn't seem to rise much so i was unable to slice the two layers resulting in a 2-layer cake as opposed to the towering 4-layer that i had hoped to make.

i made my own raspberry jam concoction with cornstarch, sugar and raspberries(delish) and made my own frosting, just standard buttercream (just butter, milk, some lemon juice + lots of powdered sugar). i wanted to make the frosting that was called for, but i just couldn't frost the cake knowing 3 sticks of butter were incorporated into the frosting. i'm sure it is delicious and looks beautiful, but seeing as i am trying to loose weight, i thought this might set me back a whole week.

the cake turned out great (other than not really rising) and though nervous that it was going to be dry, was a great consistency. will definitely try making again.

wish i had some pictures to share. mine looked okay, nothing like the gorgeous ones in the above blogs though...

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

life update

life is good. i'm counting my calories (not very effectively, but i'm trying) and so far have eaten almost zero candy/chocolate/sweets for over a week (do you understand the accomplishment in this - especially with all the christmas candy still at our house?). haven't seen any progress so far, but i'm proud of how i've been doing. i'm also trying to get on the wii fit every day. not so successful on that and i know that using the wii fit will not give me the real workout needed to drop a bunch of weight, but i do enjoy the yoga and strength training and it's better than sitting on my butt just watching cartoons (yes. i watch cartoons).

other than that i've been reading a lot (all-booked up - book club with my SKANK girlfriends) and cooking a lot (Rachael Ray Look+Cook) and loving my husband a lot. work is getting busy again which is always a good thing. also, it's been really cold. i usually go to bed and end up sweating in a tank top and shorts, but i've been sleeping in sweat pants, socks, t-shirts and zip ups for the last few days. this is VERY weird for me. all this cold really makes me want to move south!

anyway, happy Tuesday. sorry i've got nothing more exciting to share as of now :)

could we go back here please?
excellence resorts: playa mujeres - our honeymoon location :)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

2011: goals

i had a whole post dedicated to goals and hopes of achievements for this year, then i looked at my goals for 2010 and realized they were all the same and completely left un-achieved and i felt a little depressed and lousy. 2010 was a great year for me - don't get me wrong. i would not change a thing. but seeing a list of goals untouched after a year has gone by can be a little...disappointing.

so, my one and only goal for 2011 is this:

stop saying you're going to eat better, starting next week - and just do it already.
stop saying you're going to take advantage of that wii fit - you're never going to beat Josh's scores without plugging it in.
stop saying you're going to learn a new skill or expand your mind - and sign up for a class, read a book, go to the library.
stop - i'm sorry, but - being a discontent lazy-ass and do something about it!

so. here's to 2011. a year of doing!