Tuesday, January 24, 2012

One Little Turkey, One Little Ham!

Rewind back to Thanksgiving Day!! {Happy Birthday, Meggie!!!!} 
And that's where we'll start:

Here is Savannie during lunch time snack time.

Only in Pineville do you follow a dead,
gutted dear into the Walmart parking lot.

Thanksgiving Pig Roast with the Lifegroup!!! 
This was so neat, so gross, and something Wade looooooved getting to do!!
I, personally, enjoyed Jen's Cranberry Streudel-Topped Muffins much more.  :)
{See the tail....EWWWWW!!!!}

Here it is!!!  Our very first FIRE in our very own fireplace!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
{I know it doesn't look like much,
 but I was too excited to wait to take a picture!}

One little ham...

And one little turkey!!  And there's Savannah, too!!  Haaaa!  :)

Our full-fledged fire.  Perfection.

During Thanksgiving break, two of our favorite Texans came to visit!!  Hezzy picked out the wedding dress of her dreams, but those pictures, obviously, won't be on today's post. 
That will have to wait til May 19, 2012.  :) 
 But I can say this...  it was made for her.  It's beyond perfect. 
She will be the most beautiful bride
and I am sooo incredibly excited about not only her wedding day, but about her marriage to Jasey Jase and having a new brother in the family.  My heart is so happy and I'm so thankful that the original Brinker family of 6 has now turned into a Brinker/Sharbono/Poole/Kees party of 17. 
Our God is so good...

After wedding dress shopping, Heather, Jen, and I went to BB&B to register!!!  I made Hez take us with her so we could help and explain what every engaged-couple-going-register needs to hear...  that you don't need the most expensive toothbrush holder, the nicest plunger, the biggest toaster, or the sheets with the highest threadcount. 
Instead, go more for things you can use...  like shower caddies.  Pahaha!  That one was for you, Jase!

Scanners = cheapest and greatest form of entertainment!!!  :)

Who else would not only go with you, but ENJOY
every second of the 5 hours of wedding planning...  but a sister?? 
We love you soooo much, Hezzy!!

Wedding planning is exhausting.

November 24, 2011:  THANKSGIVING DAY!!!!
For Thanksgiving this year, I made 3 loaves of Pumpkin Bread, Praline Apple Pie, Dutch Apple Pie, and Apple Cherry Cider...  and while my sweet husband wanted to help me cook, once he put white sugar instead of brown sugar on the top of my pie, he was dismissed as chef and got a new job as the photographer. Haa!!   Here is me and my Vannie, patting our homemade crust into the bottom of our pie plate!!  I was soooo happy to have countertops big enough to handle 4 different recipes going at the same time!!  What a huge blessing!  And there was even some extra space for Savannah to sit and help Mommy..  a sight I look forward to seeing for the next 20 years.  :)

Praline Apple Pie.  Recipe by Taste of Home. 
Made with Love by Mom and Van.

Mrs. Dixie's Cornbread...  ohhhh gosh, soooo gooooood.
{Y'all know I have to post pictures of our Thanksgiving menu!  So much work goes into it, I just can't forget a single dish!!  I'm hoping it's not lunch time when you read this...  otherwise, grab a napkin to catch the drool.  :) }

One of my most favorite dishes from the day!  Jen won't answer the phone so I can't ask what the official recipe was called, but it was some sort of Spinach and Bean Salad with a Vinagerette on top.  I'm requesting this for EVERY dinner from now on..  seriously, soooo yuuuum.

Cheesy Baked Potato Mashed Potatoes...  sound good enough??  It was faaaaab.

It's not Thanksgiving without Green Bean Casserole!!!

A new dish using a mixture of yellow and sweet potatoes...  so interesting and truly wonderful!

Wade's PERFECT rice dressing.

Mrs. Dixie's Dressing...  another one of my favorites from the day!!  Dressing is not even something I necessarily love, but this one I am crazyyyyyyy about!!!  Okay, now I'm  drooling.

Do you prefer turkey??  Or ham??  Because BOTH are diiiiiiiiiivine.

Corn!  In honor of the Pilgrims and Indians and the very FIRST Thanksgving.  :)

A loaf of my pumpkin bread!!  It was good...  not my most favorite ever, but pretty good!!

Jen's Pumpkin Whoopie Pies...  Yes, that's Heath bar wrapped around the middle fluff!!! Yes, it was the greatest thing ever!!! Yes, she will be making them for every Thanksgiving from here on out!!!

The other greatest dessert in the world...  a pumpkin roll covered in a thick chocolate ganache.
There are no words!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The inside of my Praline Apple Pie with the homemade pie crust...  I was so proud.  :)

A bounty for which we all were truly grateful.  :)

My sweet family with my sweet boo boo boy!!!!

It was Andrew's FIRST Thanksgiving!!!

Who knew lovebirds was on the menu???  Ha. Ha. Ha.  ;)

Andrew Paul is my 2011 blessing, my precious son, my littlest turkey.  This Thanksgiving, he is on the top of my list for things that I am most thankful for....
I love you, Bubs!!!!!!!!!!!!

Even though I'm 2 months late, I hope you all had an awesome Thanksgiving!!! Ha!!

Love to you all!!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Moving Out & Moving On

Even though we just celebrated Wade's 26th and Andrew's 1st birthdays, I'm still going to try to recap what's been going on since....  before Thanksgiving.  Shameful, I know.  Buuuut that's what happens when we STILL don't have internet at the house!  {We heard they should be laying the cables in March!!!  Can we wait another 2 months...??  Ughhhh, it's going to be a looooong Februrary!}
Thankfully, though, Jen and Nathan have internet and so here I am!  :)

I FINALLY have a front porch to decorate!  :) 
The very SECOND thing I moved to the house {after hubby's Bible!}
were my 3 pumpkins and my Halloween/Thanksgiving wreath.  #priorities

I learned how to cook meals for our family
of three AND four on this stove...  :(
Here is Vannie, cooking our very last meal in the rent house...
Heather's Creamy Crawfish Pasta!

Simply. Fabulous. Print this one out, people. 
You will thank me, I promise!!!
Is 2 years old too early to teach them how to read?
And cook?  And do manual labor??  ;)

Apple Strudel Cheesecake Bars...  google the recipe. 
Again, phe.nom.en.al.

One the way to our new house, I had to marvel at how beautiful the roadway was... 
those gorgeous trees, just praising our Creator.  It reminded me of this verse::
Isaiah 55:12 - "For you shall go out in joy, and be led back in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall burst into song, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands."

I have to say that I ADORE living in the country...  where you wake up to the smell of pine woods, look out across gorgeous green pastures, breath the fresh, clean air, and hear the trees rustle together to create a gentle whispering that resonates with your very being. 
 I know I sound crazy, but just come over to visit. 
You'll understand. 

Here are a few pictures of our rent house as we pack it up and say goodbye::
One shelf emptied by my little helpers....

Our very precious, very PRICELESS besties, Meggie and Justin,
 drove down from Shreveport to help us settle in!!!!! 
They were our very first houseguests!!!!!!! 

Ready for my license, Dad!!!

Y'all didn't know I had married a mighty lumberjack, didja???  :)

Here is our FIRST meal in the new house!!!!! 
And what else could it possibly be but
roast, carrots, and potatoes!  It's a family tradition!

How do we already have TWO children driving????? 

Not only is he a lumberjack, but Wade is also a carpenter!!!!  Look what he did all by himself!!!!!  Isn't it the most perfect mailbox EVER???????  {Disregard the crooked box part and how it's not centered...  We didn't have long enough screws, sooooo this is what's working for us now.}  Haaa!

I would put my new address here {it's SOOO pretty!! I was SOOOO excited about our street name!}, but I don't think you're supposed to do that on the internet, so when you're ready to send us mail to our new mailbox at our new house,
let me know and I'll send it to you!!!! 

I'm so glad I had Megan to document the next few pictures for us...
This is when we were almost completely finished packing up the rent house and
only had one last trip before turning in our keys....

We have had so many wonderful times in this rent house...  it's where we learned how to be parents.  The good, the bad, and the ugly.  It's where my babies learned how to eat, how to speak, how to walk.  The front window is where Savannah laid in her bassinett as a newborn baby when she had a touch of jaundice.  The back window is where Andrew pulled on the blinds as a toddler and our curtains came crashing down and we could never get them the same after that. The kitchen is where we taught the kids not to play in the refrigerator and that a stick of butter is not really a snack. The front bathroom had a crack on the inside of the doorframe and I would always worry that Savannah or Andrew would push on the door when someone was using the bathroom and it would push right open.  The front room was Andrew's nursery.  Who are we kidding...  it was our storage room with a crib in it.  Haa!  Savannah's room was in the middle, making it really easy access to our room on very dark nights...  {which were most nights, especially when Wade was working that dang night shift!}  Our room was in the back, but it's really where Dolly and Piggy and Rella spent most of their time and where the ceiling fan NEVER got cleaned.  Not even once.
Such sweet, sweet memories that I hope I never, never forget.

November 20-30ish::  Our last time in our "old house."

"Are you guys sure about this??"

Hahaha, this one just makes me laugh!

All that's left to show that the Pooles ever partied here... 
Savannah's writing on the wall. 

where Wade sat for HOURS by the a/c unit when Savannah was a newborn
because that was the ONLY place she would stop crying...
Now look who's crying...

One last shot of our Poole Party before locking up this rent house...
and our precious times there... forever.

Wade's face right here is written on my heart forever.
What a special, yet bittersweet, moment this was for our family.

Sometimes I wonder if I should have written the next residents a note...  letting them know that 8 is the perfect number to put the stove on when you need to boil pasta. That the fence doesn't always latch behind you, even if it sounds like it did.  That the neighbors across the street always decorate for the holidays with giant blow-up figures and that that makes for a great field for the kids. 
That clover patches in the front yard make for the best pictures, right, Shan???  :)
 That if you don't secure the garbage lids, a dang white cat WILL find it's way in.  That I've scrubbed those floors for the past 2 years and I'll be so mad if they mess them up.  And that I'm sorry for not ever cleaning that ceiling fan.

But I guess they'll have to figure all that out on their own...

I'll never forget what Wade said as we loaded up the car 
and drove off to our new home..
"It's time to go make some new memories."
And that's what we've been doing ever since...

About Me

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From childhood friends to high school sweethearts, and now newlyweds and brand-new parents, Wade and I can only thank Jesus for His incredible blessings. Our three children are the ULTIMATE gifts from God and we pray that our lives glorify Him. He is our everything.