Monday, November 23, 2009

Sleepy Kids...

Kitty Bug sleeps in a ball...

Penny Baby sleeps in a ball...

Copper Budd... definitely does NOT sleep in a ball!

And when he truly is dead to the world, his ears stick straight out!

Stairway to Heaven...

When walked into the front door of our soon-to-be new house over a year and a half ago, Andrew and I both pictured his guitars following the angle of the stairs up the wall. Our living room and stairway to the second story is opened up to the height of the second story's ceiling, so we have a LOT of empty wall space. Our little apartment had an angled ceiling, so we staggered Andrew's guitars to fill up the wall space there... and we knew the perfect spot to hang them in our house would be up the stairway. This weekend, we finally put them up!

Andrew getting started. We decided to hang 4 of his guitars, so we got started with the first landing. He measured how high up we wanted the guitar to hang, centered it on the landing, and leveled the hanger.

The first guitar is up! We wanted the 'big part of the guitar' (excuse my terminology) to a little lower than eye level rather than the neck (that's the right term! wait- or is it arm?) of the guitar. Once this one was hung, we did the same measurements at the bottom of the stairs. Then we ran the tape measure from the bottom one to the top one, and calculated where the middle two should go.

All done! The two acoustic guitars and the electric guitar 2nd from the left are all guitars that Andrew will take down and play from time to time. The 3rd guitar from the left was a gift from Alan and LuGina Brown- Andrew's friend Josh passed away the summer after we graduated from high school. They both played a lot of music together, so Andrew was given Josh's guitar and drumsticks.

This looks like a posed shot, but I was in the other room and heard Andrew start to play, so I snuck around through the dining room and snapped this picture on the sly. ;)

The Ray House in November

Andrew and I have been having a pretty relaxing month at home... but I don't have any pictures of that! Here are some shots of what the 'kids' have been up to.

Andrew and his sweet Penny Baby. She loves snuggling with him and giving him lots of smooches! (Kitty Bug is jealous.)

Copper Budd says, "Momma, not another picture!" He used to pose for me. Now he's sick of it.

Kitty Bug perching... she likes to 'babysit' the pups. Also know as- be a gargoyle kitty.

The girls snuggled up for a nap.

Every night, the pups find their spot on the kitchen floor and snuggle in for the night.

So far, so good with the pups sleeping indoors. We are keeping them contained in the kitchen using baby gates. We've woken up a couple of mornings to minor destruction... a few recipes, Penny's Rumpkin, a few items out of the trash can, and a few pieces of mail. Thankfully, nothing major has been chewed up. Andrew is still convinced we will wake up one morning to chewed table legs and chairs. Kitty Bug used to keep my feet (or my belly, or my back, or my head) warm at night, but now she shares the kitchen with the pups. At first, she slept on the table, then the counter... now she curls right up on the blankets with the pups! This morning, they were a row of 3 little sleeping balls... so cute! I have to try and get a picture of it.

We've been so lucky with Copper and Penny. We had no idea how they would turn out, but thankfully they are fairly calm, sweet, non-barkers who are happy with a belly rub and a snuggle! Yesterday was horribly rainy, and they stayed inside all day just dozing and playing with Kitty Bug. They are amazingly calm for still being less than a year old! They seem to contain their craziness in the house, and instead go wild in the yard. Though we've only had them for 8 months, I can't imagine life without a Penny smooch and Copper snuggle!

Little Nugget Visit!

Last Tuesday, Justin and Kara came down to Macon for dinner... and brought their sweet little baby girl, Avery. She has the cutest chubby cheeks, and I couldn't help but call her Nugget all night long. We all enjoyed some good dinner and conversation at Mellow Mushroom, and took turns holding the sweet Nugget!

Little holding Avery... and enduring the jokes that Avery is already half her height! Heehee!

Nuggets got to eat!

Andrew and Avery

She was right at home with "Uncle" Andrew!

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Lalla Family Christmas Transition

Growing up, the Lalla family had a simple holiday transition rule... in order to make sure Thanksgiving gets enough r-e-s-p-e-c-t (channel your inner Aretha, folks!), we were not allowed to do ANYTHING Christmas-y until Santa went by in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. It was always worth the wait... we'd be in our pajamas watching the parade, smelling all the good stuff coming from the kitchen, dancing to the parade performances. And FINALLY, Santa and his rosy cheeks would be waving to us from the TV... Ma would immediately turn on the Christmas music, and it pretty much played from then until New Year's! No Black Friday shopping for us, we'd spend the weekend putting up all of the Christmas decorations and decorating the trees.

Things have changed now that our family has grown to include 3 spouses. But, thankfully, the Lalla Family Christmas Transition still takes place in some form or fashion. My sister and I may not be in our pajamas dancing together in front of the TV Thanksgiving morning, but we are sharing the big parade moments through text and picture messaging (and possibly stepping away from the in-laws tables for a quick phone call to squeal "SANTA! SANTA!").

While the holidays can get a little stressful as we try to get from one family to another, I have to say that we are so thankful to have 2 loving families to share it with. I love that the Lalla Family Christmas I grew up with has expanded to include decorating the gingerbread house with my sis-in-laws, Secret Santa, and early morning Christmas Breakfast with Andrew's family. I love that Andrew and I have our own little Christmas the night before we head to Cartersville to be with our families. I love that this year I will be hanging two little puppy stockings on our mantle, next to ours and Kitty's.

This year flew by, but thank goodness it is the most wonderful time of the year! :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

She's watching...

Do you have a little someone who eyeballs you while you're on the computer?

I need this little bug to keep an eye on me at work, too!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

TKL J Turns 25!

This past weekend, Andrew and I took a little drive down to Moultrie, GA to visit the Joneses! Trisha and Carlton moved into their new house about a month ago, and I was just itching to get down there and see their home, my best friend, and of course little Vespa pup. Trisha has a great blog post of the weekend (and she took more pictures), but I wanted to share the few that I took. We drove down Friday night, and after we got a tour of the house, Carlton and Trisha took us to a downtown Moultrie restaurant called Blue Sky Grill - which was very good! I love renovated downtown buildings... this one had clouds painted on the ceiling!

Saturday morning, we spent a little bit of time lazing around before Trisha and I headed to Wal-Mart to get some baking and lunch goodies. I'm pretty sure that I saw every single person that lives in Moultrie at Wal-Mart! It was crazy busy... must keep that in mind the next time I head to the one here in Macon. It was still the most fun I've had grocery shopping at Wal-Mart. Come on, I was with my best friend and we were chatting endlessly about recipes and food... it doesn't get any better than that! When we got back to the house, Trisha's sister and her boyfriend (Kristen and Scott) were there, and we were ready to get some lunch grilling. Carlton and Andrew already had football on, so we just relaxed and cooked and had a good time hanging out with everyone.

Later that evening, we enjoyed a few trick-or-treaters that came by before we headed out to Trisha's birthday dinner. We went to Cafe Marebella in Thomasville, which was actually in the Historic Train Depot! It was a beautiful Italian restaurant... if it hadn't been so chilly, we could have eaten outside where the lanterns and greenery made for a gorgeous setting.

(L-R) Trisha, Carlton, Scott, Kristen, Andrew and me getting ready to dive into our delicious food! Andrew had the lobster ravioli (which was amazing), and I had the classic chicken parmigiana with fettucini alfredo (oh so yum!).

cll & tkl, best friends 14 years and counting!

Surprise! Birthday cake (song and all) for the birthday girl!

Sunday morning, Chef Andrew went to work in the kitchen making a Birthday Breakfast of french toast, bacon and eggs. Trisha walked in saying, "It smells like Waffle House in here!"

After breakfast, Trisha sat down and opened her birthday cards. With Daylight Savings, she got a whole extra hour to her special day... how lucky is that? Too soon, it was time for us to hit the road and get back to our pups. (This was our first time leaving them at the house while we traveled- I was a worried Momma, even though my friend Sierra was checking on them for me!) It was a great weekend with my wonderful best friend, and I can't wait to do it again soon!

Happy 25th Birthday, Trisha!