Friday, December 28, 2012

Oh What a Year!

It was almost a year ago that I posted on here the adventures I wanted the Busy Bryants to go on during 2012.  If you don't remember it you can read that post here.  I remember when I wrote that post it seemed like a wish list of things I really wanted us to do but didn't think we would be able to find the time to ever get to.  I am happy to say we really did get a lot marked off that list! 

In January we spent a few days in a cozy cabin with the kids and my parents.  James River State Park is every bit as picturesque as their web site describes.  I think a return trip in the Summer to go tubing is in order.

In February we headed to Nelson County and tried our luck at snow tubing and zip lining.  Then we warmed up by hitting a few wineries on the way home.  Awesome day!

In March we visited friends in Harrisonburg and celebrated birthdays. 

In late March, early April, the races started gearing up...............lord why do we torture ourselves?

Shamrock 5K

Monument 10K
Muddy Buddy

In May we finally got to go on one adventure I have been eyeing for a couple years!  We went on a river boat tour of the Rappohannock River.  The fact that a winery was also on the tour was a total surprise...haha.  Ok yea I knew.  So what. 

Ingelside Winery

In June we slipped off to Orlando with my sister and my brother-in-law.

Emma started it!

I don't LIKE it!

We came home from Orlando just to pack our bags and head to Tennessee in early July.  We stayed in an absolutley amazing house with some even more amazing friends. 

We came home...recooperated just a bit and had some fun doing the biking and running thing again :)

High Bridge State Park

High Bridge State Park

Pre Color me Rad

Post Color me Rad

The Color Me Rad race still has to be one of my favorites!  I'm already signed up for 2013. 

In August I went on a little camping trip in Natural Tunnel State Park.  It was breath taking.  Not just because it was beautiful...but also because we had to share the camp with skunks :)

In September we visited another place I had really been wanting to check out.  Westmoreland State Park and Colonial Beach. 

Westmoreland State Park
Westmoreland State Park

In October we took our second trip to Manassas to watch Tommy run.  Then we hit up a pretty awesome come maze. 


November was a time to reflect on all that we have to be thankful for.  We celebrated Thanksgiving and spent time with family.  We spent a weekend at Bear Creek State Park and marked that adventure off our list :)

We also ran the last race of the year for us.....The Dunkin' Donuts Munchkin Run

In December we completed the year with a great adventure/surprise birthday celebration for my mom.  We went to Virginia Beach and checked out the lights on the boardwalk!  

Whew!  As I was go back looking at all the things we did this year I feel so blessed that so many of the things we did were with our family.  At times the kids complain that they feel like we are always on the go...but when we sit down and talk about all the things we've done they just smile, laugh and then say how much they enjoyed it...But it's not nearly as much as I've enjoyed spending the time with them.

I know there were a lot of pictures for this post....and you know what....even with all the adventures I posted and pictures it's still not really a list of ALL the things we did.  It was an amazing year!  I can't wait to see what next year holds :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

From Cavas to Chalk Board

I recently posted some pictures of the Christmas decorations in the house.  I also posted them on Instagram.  I had a couple people ask about the new chalk board in the kitchen....the one with the Christmas Tree.

Yes that Christmas Tree....over on the left. 

It was a super easy project!  And since I am no artist it was a super simple Chirstmas tree with no frills :)

All you need is a canvas, chalk board paint and if you want it to look a little nicer a pretty frame.  I am lucky in that my mother-in-law paints, so frames are not hard to come by and after I explained my project she gave me a painting she didn't like and told me to just paint over it.  I did and the final product came out just as nice as if I used a blank canvas.  I used Martha Stewart's chalk paint form Michael's. 

I applied a coat of the paint once a day for three days and just left it laying around in between times to dry.  Then I stuck it in the fame and voila!

I had thought about painting a wall in the kitchen in chalk board paint.  Something like this....

The Lettered Cottage

Or maybe something like this..........

Under the Sycamore

I'm afraid that the size of the kitchen and the lack of natural light won't support such a large effort.  Maybe I'll broaden my horizon get braver next year :)

Speaking of next year....I'm looking at future adventures the Bryants can get into....what sort of things have you and your family always wanted to do but never tried?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Post Christmas Blahs

All the gifts are unwrapped, the living room looks like a tornado touched down in it and if I eat another Christmas cookie I might just toss my  Spending Christmas with my family is truly a blessing but thank God it happens only once a year! 

Today we are back to work. The weather here is a cold, windy, rainy type day.  And wouldn't you know I left the house this morning without my coffee or my cell phone?!?!?!  I guess I got so out of sync that I totally didn't know how to act this morning.  Not to worry I am all straight (well as straight as I can get) now.  But looking at the house I totally have the post Christmas Blues.  You know what I mean.  All the good cheer and joy of Christmas is gone.  All the excitement and anticipation of the big day is now just a memory.  And all my stomach can do is groan and mumble something about needing some TUMS.  I do wish we could spread that good cheer out for more of the year...and maybe find a way to capture that excitement and focus it on something else.  I did find one place that is perhaps trying to do just that.  I Believe in Strangers.  After the tragedy in CT I committed myself to doing 26 random acts of kindness.  I have3 down and 23 more to go.  I don't feel pressured to do them all at once or even in the next couple weeks...but in the next year.  It's my hope that each one with cause a person to smile and maybe feel like it's Christmas that day for them. 

I hope your day is not rainy and if it is I hope you are someplace warm.  Glad tidings :)

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Christmas Style Bling for your Coat

I wanted to spice up my winter coat just a bit and help it get into the winter spirit.  I was tinkering around one night and come up with a cute (at least to me) idea. 

All I needed was a couple pieces of fabric in Christmas Colors (I used three), thread and needle and a bar pin to attach it to your clothes.

1. Make a few yo-yos out of the holiday material.  If you don't know how to make one....check this out.

2.  I attached the three yo-yos together with thread.  You can use fabric glue and probably hot glue.  But I had a needle and thread already at my disposal so I just put a few stitches in to hold them together.

3.  Attach the bar pin to the back of the yo-yos.  Again the glue will work but I had thread available.

And viola....your ready to show off your new creation.

I'm happy with how it came out...and at the price :)  Free to me since I already had the stuff around the house.  Happy Wednesday.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday Love

I've always loved the feeling of a fresh start.  And usually Mondays give me that start over.  But this Monday I'm just not feeling it.  Today I'm feeling thankful that my kids are safe.  I'm feeling angry that life seems so unfair.  I'm feel sad that there are parents that don't have their babies any more.  Frustrated that there are no answers to WHY some bad things happen.  The only thing that has felt bending the rules over the weekend and sharing our bed with Emma, staying on the couch for a few hours to watch Christmas movies and getting in extra hugs like there is no tomorrow.  Maybe I'll feel a fresh start coming on tomorrow....maybe not.  But in the mean time I'll be taking all the hugs I can get from a certain 2 year old and I'll be hoping she turns out to be a genius and can skip having to ever go to school.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Red and .......Turquoise for Santa

Usually I stick with the traditional red and green theme for the house when it comes to Christmas.  But this year I just could not help myself!  While in Walmart, of all places, I come across some of the cutest turquoise colored ornaments ever and they just jumped right in my shopping cart.  Really, they DID!  So who was I to argue?  So this year and I expect for many years to follow (or until I no longer have an obsession with the color) we'll be seeing red and turquoise for Christmas :)

Then there are rooms in my house that look like this...............

Ho Hum.....

I hope the Holiday spirit is touching you all...Happy Thursday peeps.