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merry christmas from michigan!

Today is the day we trade in sunny ATL for the chilly midwest.
Hello, 12hr. road trip to Michigan!
I can hardly wait to be surrounded by family and friends :)

Here's to a merry and bright Christmas!
See you in 2012!

brown paper packages.

I'm still not sure about "These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things" being a Christmas song.  However, I am very sure that I love brown paper packages tied up with strings, er...ribbons. :)  Yesterday, I made THESE homemade samoas for a potluck dinner with friends.
(FYI: Delicious, but A LOT of work.)

Now, what to do with the extras?
With some encouragement from friends who assured me that this gesture was, in fact, awesome and not creepy, I decided to package several of them for each of our neighbors in nothing else but brown paper bags and ribbons.

And I left them on each neighbors' doorstep.
They looked pretty adorable propped on each door. 
 I hope the neighbors (and MAILMAN) enjoy a homemade Girl Scout cookie. 

Happy Christmas, mailman!

And in case you weren't convinced that I truly love brown paper packages, here's a look at some of our gifts this year. Love, love.

Happy Almost Christmas! 

happy early christmas to us!

You know what's the best?


You know what's even better than surprises? Early surprises.
Because early surprises are more surprise-ier than regular surprises. Right? Right.

Well, this beauty of a camera was our first Blossom birthday, christmas and save-a-lot gift to each other.  This present happened to come lots earlier than expected.  Joe just couldn't help himself.  Thus, an early surprise.

And this is me trying to get a picture of the camera while holding it, proving to be far more difficult than anticipated.

Expect photos on the ol' blog to be far more fancy and impressive than before (maybe, let's hope).

Can't help the cheesiness.  It's natural.
 And lastly, we also saved up for this awesome, awesome camera bag which holds our not-too-large camera in style.  It is an Etsy true love.  Find it and others like it here.
It's the perfect size, has plenty of pockets, is durable and in my opinion: adorable.

Happy Monday, y'all!
( Since I live in Georgia, I can say ya'll, right?)

teacher perk

Cappucino from Murphy's.  Fav ATL brunch spot.
You know what the best part of being a teacher is?
(Okay, maybe not the best part, because there is that whole 'educating children to be world citizens and make an impact on society' thing, which I also enjoy.)

It's like being a college kid again, except the loans aren't raking in and I have a large stack of papers to grade and unit plans to write.

Regardless, I am excited to finish up Christmas shopping and galavant while drinking coffee with new friends (obviously).

Here's to Christmas-y goodness.  And much more time for blog posts and picture-taking. :)

christmas lists. or lack there of.

Oh, we are so behind on Christmas gift buying, creating, preparing.  It doesn't help when these are the "Christmas lists" I get from my parents. 

V neck casual shirt long sleeve
V neck sweatshirt
XBox 360 or 361
One lump coal
V neck sweater
1 quart oil
General cool T shirts that say cool things such as "I brake to pick my nose" or "Booger on board"
That is it.
Love, your Daddy
Well I am not sure what I want for Christmas.  I am just excited that we will all be home for the holidays. I guess that's not good enough of a list though.

         Just surprise me

So, it looks like I'll be "buying" Mom the gift of my presence and Dad a quart of oil or a booger shirt.  Merry Christmas?

Gotta love them. :)

the comfort of familiarity.

I've noticed that familiarity either breeds one of two feelings: boredom or overwhelmingly-wonderful nostalgia.

I made a great discovery just now: Little Women is on.  Not only have I always wanted to play Jo March on stage someday (it could still happen, right?), I instantly find my childhood self on an Ohio horse farm nestled under a quilt accompanied by marshmallowy hot chocolate, my blonde little sister and my lovely grandparents.

It's funny how something as small as a familiar movie can remind me of such sweet memories.  This incredible movie and even better book, instantly reminds me of how blessed I am to look on childhood with such happiness and warmth deep in my heart. 

And then Jo goes and says something like this:

"The wonderful thing about a good book is...
it makes you feel like you're home."

Gosh, I love her.

small snaps. & a fun recipe.

Life last weekend? Christmas-y, sweet and so, so enjoyable. 
Take a look-sy....
My Meme's homemade Christmas ornaments. 
Recipe below.

Beer cheese soup and homemade pretzels.

So much Christmas cheer.

Homemade pumpkin pie. DUH.

Interested in making your own cinnamon apple  Christmas ornaments? DO IT.  Just be warned that your house will smell like Big Red followed by cinnamon rolls for several days.  Yes, days.  Read on.

Meme's Cinnamon Apple Ornaments
-a ton of cinnamon (we're talking 3cups-ish)
-a spot of applesauce (yep I said a "spot")

Preheat oven to 250.  
Mix a bit of applesauce with the cinnamon until your dough begins to resemble cookie dough.  DO NOT ADD too much applesauce or your ornaments will be two sticky to roll out/cut out.  Trust me, I experienced this.  Once it resembles cookie dough consistency roll out the dough to be about 1/4 of an inch thick.  Do not make your cut outs too thick or they will bubble while baking.  
Before placing the cut-outs on a greased cookie sheet, be sure to use a pencil to make a hole in the ornaments before baking.
Bake the cut-outs for 6 hours at 250.
Let cool and tie with pretty string. 

Enjoy your new cinnamon factory (er...home?). 
Here's to another lovely weekend! Happy Friday!

call the cuteness police.

 Over Thanksgiving, we finally bought the camera of our dreams.
Happy early Christmas to us!

Not to mention, we finally basked in precious time with two of our most favorite little girls.
Tea parties, coloring, dress up and countless photos.
Being an aunt and uncle is the best. We love us some baby Blossoms.

Especially when they're this adorable...

Oh does she love her Uncle Joey!

Styled by THEE Grace Blossom herself. 

Someone found a bunny friend. FAVORITE.

Happy Friday! :)

"corn stalk you". letters from dad.

Our tree is here! Stay tuned for Christmas cheer.

First things first: I don't post on school nights, so I hope you're amazed, baffled and beside yourself with glee.  And because of the first statement, this will be short.  (Teachers ALWAYS have homework.)

I am simply dropping in to share the following text that I received from my dad last night:

"Dear Bloggerpersona,
Need web address for your lame blog so I can corn stalk you. 
Love, Daddy"

This is why he's awesome.  We are exactly alike.  Although, I wish I had thought of "corn stalk you" first.  Props to Dad for a sweet new saying.  Dad: 1, Ash: 0.

P.S. It's almost Friday.  Hang in there. :)

Disclaimer: My dad doesn't actually think I or this blog is "lame".  He has much love for both, I'm sure.