Monday, December 29, 2008

love dare...

Ben and I started the Love Dare three days ago. It's a book that was created for the movie, Fireproof (recall my post here). We were a bit nervous that the challenge would be much like the film...a bit cheesy. However, it's been so much fun already.

Each day there's a small written segment that describes what is needed to love your spouse as Christ loves us. From there, you're given a small dare for the day. Each day builds on the previous day(s). So, you're constantly challenged to repeat the daily dares.

So, whether you find yourself enjoying pure marital bliss, or you're a bit frustrated by your mate, consider picking up this book! It's well worth the $.

P.S. I'm not being paid to say any of this...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

merry christmas... all and to all a good night!

The Simmons family would like to extend our warmest wishes for a most wonderful Christmas!

We would also like to remind you that this blessed day is not about gifts, family, friends, a decorated house, or the "spirited feeling." Instead this day is celebrated because of our Savior's birth. Let us not forget the true reason behind our gatherings and gift exchanges! Without Him, we would have nothing to celebrate.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

how does this work...

I did my last bit of Christmas shopping online, December 6th. Included in this order were two gifts for Ben and one for my mother-in-law, Suzy. I figured it would be here by now. Since I was a bit concerned by the delay (we are heading up to the Island on Saturday, so I need to make sure I can wrap it and such), I checked my email for the original information.

Turns out Amazon sent me an email today apologizing for the delay. That was nice. However, it went on to say that the book for Suzy (above) would not be in until the middle of January or February. Really? Oh, and they also mentioned that the other two items would ship shortly and should be here AFTER CHRISTMAS! What?

Am I missing something?

Friday, December 12, 2008

i should clarify...

My post below was not meant to offend. I should be careful what I say and how I say it. No matter how you and your family go about your Christmas greetings, it's all good! :) My apologies.

Alicia, I'm excited to use I don't need anything now, but I saved it to my Favorites.

Christie, I'm sure your Christmas cards will be lovely!

Kara, keep an eye on your mailbox. But don't get too excited. They're nothing monumental.

Lisa, I will think of you the next time I read a personalized note. I'll be smiling too. :)

christmas cards...

Lately we've received a handful of Christmas cards in the much fun. However, I must say that I'm extremely disappointed with the way it's all carried out these days. Suddenly there's nothing personal about the cards. No one actually writes a personal message. Instead, you get these cute pictures with a standard greeting. Often times the address is even printed off on a label. I miss the days when people would actually sit down and hand write a personal note. I was never the one doing this at our house - I was too young. Instead, my mom would write out every single Christmas card by hand. Then, I would eagerly check the mail each day, looking for letters from our friends and family. It was so much fun. Now, it's kind of a disappointment.

This year, we have Christmas cards (for the first time) and I've typed up a specific note for each person/family. I wanted to write them by hand, but I was fearful I would run out of time. Ours is not a great novel about this year's adventures. Instead, I've just made it a point to get specific and personal for each recipient.

I don't want to see these Christmas traditions as bothersome, or taxing. Instead, I want to enjoy it. I want to sincerely wish people a Merry Christmas. I want them to know that they are thought of during this blessed season. I also want to remind them of the true meaning behind it all.

Maybe we've all just got too much on our plates during this season...and that shouldn't be the case. It's my goal to simplify things and continuously remind myself that there's more to Christmas than just the long to-do lists.

Can anyone else relate?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

the cutest...

...twins in the world (although Shawna and Scotty are pretty cute too)!

Ella - The more relaxed of the 2 sisters. Ella doesn't really fuss too much and she's a pretty easy-going little lady. She loves to cuddle and she's quite good at burping up her food.

Evie - I didn't get a close up picture of Evie this time. I'm already struggling to "keep things fair." She is a mama's girl...or a daddy's girl. Basically, she just wants to be some body's girl. She loves to be held and she doesn't want to miss out on any of the action. She's not a fan of sleeping all too often either.


We spent the night at Emily and Ryan's last Wednesday. This was done for 2 reasons - 1) Ben and Ryan were playing football early on Thursday morning up in Edmonds and there was no way we were going to make that drive on Thanksgiving. 2) The extra night with Emily and Ryan, also meant more time with Evie and Ella! To some this may seem us, we recognize it as a duty - as an auntie and uncle!

Wednesday night we stayed up late and played a round of Settlers. Emily did well as a first-time player. And although Ben and Ryan argued over the game as if it truly mattered, my husband proved victorious. I also think it's important to note that I was planning to lay down the win with my next turn. Ben was seated to my right and his turn preceded mine...I could taste the victory and then it was quickly stolen.

Emily is playing with Evie on her lap. I held Ella most of the game...they're just so cute. Anything that only weighs 8 pounds is just absolutely adorable!

Once Ella's eyelids became heavy, I put her in here to sleep. She watched us play for a few moments and then she was off to dreamland. So sweet!

Thanksgiving on the Island was great. The ferry ride there and back were not as pleasant. I could do without the waits. Oh well. We had some yummy food and it was nice to see Grandma Nancy, Bob, Kathie, Don and Suzy.

Check out the cute grandparents. Can you tell that they're thrilled to have these little blessings (Evie on the left with grandpa, Ella on the right with grandma)? It's great for each of 'em.

Monday, December 1, 2008

some feedback would be nice...

As soon as I'm done entering my grades and comments (maybe Wednesday), I plan to put together the greatest Christmas playlist ever! Yeah, this one may actually top the NKOTB's Merry, Merry Christmas album. Hard to believe, I know.

So, here's where you come into play. I need to know what tops your list of favorite Christmas tunes. I can tell you right now that mine is O Holy Night. It doesn't matter who sings this song, I love it...any and all versions are lovely.

I must confess that I'm not a big fan of Christmas music. To me, it's like watching a movie over and over again...I don't find it all that fun. However, there are a few exceptions. So, now you might be able to understand why I need your feedback. Feel free to leave me a comment with some of your favorite songs - and please include the artist(s) as well.

Worth mentioning - I do not care for instrumentals, the Little Drummer Boy, or O Christmas Tree. Got it? But I totally favor Mariah Carey's, All I Want for Christmas. That's right, I said it.