All because two people fell in love...

We met in February 1989, started dating in May, and got married in September. And Josh came *almost* 11 months later, just in case y'all were wondering. And then no more came. We waited, and waited, and then Lauren decided to make her debut in May 1995 (5 weeks early), and then Kayley 1997, Jacob 1998, Krissy 2001, Lindsey 2004 & Joey 2006. We lived in Texas until 2005, and then we moved to Arkansas, just about 25 miles north of Texarkana, Texas. Fortunately all my children are Texans (and my handsome husband) because Texans are just cool. Wish I was a Texan... but husband had to settle with a California gal, which I think is pretty cool too.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Small pictures

Before I came to Killeen to visit my parents/family, I quickly uploaded pictures to Facebook so that I could download them to the laptop after arriving. But the pictures turned out small. The one picture that was taken of Josh in 2000 (or now I'm thinking it was 2001) was already on the computer, so I'm thinking that is why that one turned out bigger? When I do blog at home and add pictures using dial-up, I select "small" pictures because it doesn't take as long (even though it's already taking 15 minutes to add 5 pictures!) to download.
Dial-up just stinks!

How could I forget Christmas?

I tell my kids that on Christmas morning that they can't come out of their rooms until about 7:30am, and only when I am ready for them to come out. I have to get ready, turn on Christmas lights, Christmas music, and then yell out to the kids (who are usually in Lauren's & Kayley's room) about all the cool stuff that Santa had brought. I also let the kids know this year that Santa was not bringing a lot of stuff because I told him that we didn't need a lot (hehe).

Krissy & Lindsey still were excited about the things that Santa brought...
And so did Jacob...
Lauren and Kayley were checking out the make-up and Bath & Body Works stuff...
Uh, hello? Are you awake Shawn?
Jacob got a cool remote-type plane, and I think Shawn had more fun with it!
After we see what Santa has brought, we had our big Christmas breakfast of crepes, eggs, sausage, fruit and whatever else we decide to have. It's the same kind of breakfast that I had when I was growing up. I have a friend that I met in Bryan, whose family did the same thing. I thought that was cool. Elder Miller finally called right after breakfast. I don't know what happened to the picture of Shawn talking with Elder Miller, but this picture is while Shawn is talking with him... Lauren was bored: playing Barrel of Monkeys!
First present to be opened on Christmas morning! Yay, for Joey!! He got a Memory Game from Lindsey.
Lindsey got this cute doll that looks like her... dark hair and blue eyes!
Krissy got a cute one but with lighter hair but big brown eyes like her...
Jacob got some cool church shoes that he really wanted.
Lauren got $100 from Shawn & I. She wanted jeans, but she needed to try them on, and she wanted to choose the ones she wanted, so she suggested that I just give her a $100 bill so she can go buy them!
Kayley got a really neat purse and wallet that she wanted.
And the train tracks for Joey!!

Fun Monday

This past Monday we headed to Killeen to visit my parents and family. But we had to make a detour to Winnsboro, Tx. Why, you asked? In November I took Lauren to a Gilmer, Tx Stake dance in Mt. Pleasant. And she met a cute boy named Preston, and ever since they have been texting and Facebooking. This is that, and that is this... and next thing I know our whole family was invited for lunch on Monday at their house. Met Preston's family, and saw where he lived, and all were so cute, and so fun!! They used to be in the Texarkana Ward back in 1996, but because we hadn't moved up here yet, I don't remember them. They weren't in the ward for a long time, but now they are in the Quitman Ward (or Branch). I think I have found a new friend, as his mom is awesome and really fun. Next dance for the Gilmer Stake is January 9th, and I have been told I am going. LOL!! I told Shawn I probably wouldn't be home until 3am!


My baby, my very last baby (!), turned 3 on December 27. It was also his last official day in nursery. On the way to church, he was in such a happy mood, and was all smiles!
But by the time we finished lunch (we fed Elders after church at the church) and was ready for his cake and to sing "Happy Birthday", he would not smile. Stood there and pouted.
Such a moody child!! A cute moody child! Like his white shirt & tie, and missionary name tag?

I asked him a few days before his birthday what type of cake he wanted, and he said "o-wange" cake. So I made a pound cake and put an orange-colored glaze on it. It was good. He got some new Chevron cars and a Thomas train for his tracks... Good day!

Love you Joey!! Happy 3rd Birthday!!

First Christmas away...

and I think Elder Miller was good. Just before Thanksgiving he wrote home telling me how homesick he was, but I wrote him back telling him that if he did what his mission president told him to do on Thanksgiving and Christmas, then he would be fine. I guess just the thought of him not being there for the 1st time ever for the big Thanksgiving Reunion, or the Christmas Eve stuff, was making him sad. On Thanksgiving day, he and his companion put up their tiny Christmas tree, and took pictures...

Elder Miller called us on Christmas Day around 9:30am. We spoke with him for about an hour. He sounded good, and so grown-up. He said that he had already opened up the gifts we sent, and had seen what "Santa" had brought to him in his stocking. He said he loved them all, and that he wasn't disappointed. I got him a dk. red sweater from Target with a tie that match from Kohl's. I also got him candy, food and whatever else I got him. I can't even remember now! It wasn't lots, so maybe that's why.

For all you mothers out there who think that your young son's mission is so long away... it'll happen before you know it!! But we have been so blessed because of it!!

Christmas Past

I think this was Christmas time 2000. Josh was being an elf with his Uncle Scott as Grampa Pritchard was seeing what cousin Austin wanted for Christmas. It's hard to tell because Austin was always a big boy, and has always been 1 head or 2 taller then his other 4 cousins his age. But I am sure this was Christmas 2000.


When I was like 7 years old, maybe younger, I remember my mom making gingerbread houses. She used real candy, and I remember them being so cute, and so dang the coolest things ever! I am sure I was about 7 or 8, and that my mom had her 5th or 6th child, and gingerbread houses were never made again.
For years I have wanted to make them with my kids, but recipe after recipe I found I had to roll out the dough, etc... to me, just a chore!! But for the last few years I have seen the pre-made ones by Wilton at the stores. I would debate, and end up not getting them because I was to cheap to buy them. This year I went to Texas-side Walmart, and they were $3 off on Christmas Eve morning. I bought 4. I had just been to Sams, and they had some for $9.99 but they weren't pre-assembled, so I opted not to get those. I get home from Texarkana, and the fun begins! The frosting was made, and visions for the perfect-looking gingerbread house was, well... visioned!
Krissy & Lindsey shared a house to decorated.
Awwwww, so careful with those round candies!
The next "Cake Boss!"
Don't ask what Lauren was thinking about... Kayley trying to be the next Cake Boss too!
Joey sneaking in a bite of frosting...
and loving it!
Ta-Da! The finished gingerbread houses!! They were the centerpiece for our Christmas Day breakfast and dinner. They turned out cute, and the kids really loved doing them. Maybe this will become a Christmas Eve day tradition.

But I will have to either try the ones Sams had, or learn to make my own, because these were the nastiest tasting gingerbread houses & candy that I have ever tasted!! I will never buy the Wilton ones again!! Any good recipes out there?

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Eve Eve 2009

Since moving here in 2005, I have hosted a family Christmas Eve Party except in 2006 when I was 100 months pregnant with Joey and had Christmas in Killeen (but I think, if I recall, we did something earlier in the month that year). We usuallt coordinate with Shawn's brothers, as both work odd hours/shifts. Perfect time this year was the 23rd. I decided to do easy dinner, as in turkey/ham sandwiches on rolls, chips, fudge, cookies, Shirley Temples. After we ate, we did the T'was the Night Before Christmas pass-around. Shawn's family loves doing it. We always have lots of fun, and lots of laughter. Lindsey got a belt buckle the size of a dinner plate that says "country girl"... her favorite gift of all time, I think! We also took pictures...
Shawn and I... celebrating 20 years together!
Our family minus our Elder Miller... Our beautiful children!

After all the fun and laughter was over, we watched a 3 minute music video that my friend had done for my YW daughters on "Wisemen Still Seek Him." It was very nice, and hopefully set the Christmas spirit in everyone!

Lake Greeson, AR

Shawn decided one morning before Christmas, which I really think was the Tuesday before, that he wanted to go for a drive up the mountains. Now, Arkansas mountains, where we live, are not like mountains in Utah, or even Pocatello. To me, they are very large hills, and granted, I bet if I was to stand at the base of one of these so called hills, and look up before I climbed, I would think it would be a mountain. But I had errands to do first that morning, and we didn't leave for the drive until like noon. We stopped in Nashville, AR first for lunch at our favorite KFC (only time we ever eat there... like 1-2 times a year), and then head up. Of course, I think Shawn is taking the wrong road, because of the map (we don't have a TomTom or even GPS), and so he turns around to go the other way, only to find out later that we were on the right road. But Shawn wouldn't turn back, and so we drove up to Lake Greeson, past the dam...
and took these 2 pictures.

Then we went home. End of story.


Yes, it's finally happened! Shawn tiled my entry way!
Here it is being laid...
Here it is completed, almost!
Krissy & Joey enjoying it too!!

When I left the other day, the trim is now up around the front door, and most of the floor boards are up, and my whole hallway is done too!! It's amazing! Shawn did such a good job! He only tore up a small bit of tile after deciding it wasn't right, and redid it all. It's now almost perfect (can't say it's 100% perfect), and I am so happy because of it!! I want a dark red rug by the front door. I have a found a few on-line that I really like. I want it to be round, as I think it would be totally cool. But if I have to get square/rectangle, then I will.

Thanksgiving 2009

The 5th annual Pritchard Family Thanksgiving Reunion was held the week of Thanksgiving, of course! 38 people shared my house mostly throughout the day, and at night 5-6 people left to stay in a hotel in Texarkana. We had people everywhere, including 3 tents out front, and 8 dogs to go sleep with them too. Shawn did a great job at coordinating all the deer stands & deer hunters. 4 deer were taken down, and some were shot at, but were never found.
Family starts arriving Monday night, and all stayed until Saturday. We never had a dull moment, and actually everyone got a long. Friday night night, after the hot dog roast/s'mores, was the Talent/Skit night, with really only 1 talent being done by Madi, age 6, singing "How Firm a Foundation". The rest were silly skits.
Jacob having a great time!
Lindsey posing as usual...
Joey playing with Jared & Ella... the 2-3 yr olds!
The 8-9 year olds... Krissy, Colby, Rachel & Jannie
Meghan, Rebekah, Lauren & Kayley shopping at Central Mall on Black Friday.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


They are coming!! I am trying to upload pictures to Facebook, so I can download them on here the week of the 28th, when I have wireless for 5 WHOLE DAYS!! Some of the topics will be:
Thanksgiving 2009
Christmas Eve Eve
Gingerbread Houses
Elder Miller
Joey's 3rd Birthday
Man, that is a lot!! I can't wait!!