The Christmas Train

Earlier this month my dad was reading the Big Nickel newspaper and saw that the Christmas train happened this last weekend. One day it was from Seligman, MO to Rogers, AR and I don’t remember the other day. I don’t remember because we were planning on the Saturday trip, we had plans for that Sunday. We were excited because it happened to be a Tbug weekend so we bought our tickets and made plans to ride the Christmas Train.

I really wasn’t sure what to expect and it wasn’t quite what I thought I might expect, but it was a lot of fun either day.


The Ginger Bread House

Every year I have the best of intentions and every year I fail when it comes to making a Ginger Bread House… until this year. Truthfully I think last year was the first year I really attempted to even try, usually I mention that we should but we run out of time. Last year I actually made the house pieces although they were horrible and we didn’t wind up putting it together so at the end of the season on clearance I bought a kit. Then I forgot I did that… sorta.

So jump forward to this year and while we were in Ft. Worth I found this really cool kit that had all the cutters and everything you’d need for making a ginger bread house (not the actual pieces, oh no, recipes to make your own!). We bought it and away I went making the dough… The dough was easy to make… SCORE! and for the most part it all worked out good. I had a few hiccups along the way, but isn’t that to be expected the first time out of the gate?


Ft. Worth Bound!

Ah, the yearly pilgrimage to Ft. Worth, Texas. Every year is different, obviously. This year as I was playing on Facebook during the 7 hour drive I saw where you ask Siri “What are you doing for Christmas?” This was her answer.

If you play in Snapchat any at all I’m sure that you’ve seen you get the ‘Tis the season from the different states you’re in. I should have taken one from Missouri before I left but didn’t think about it. I can also tell you when you get right inside the Texas border, it doesn’t show up yet. So I feel bad for those people… I forget which town I was trying it in. It took getting closer to McKinney before it showed up.

We made great time. Usually we make good time but somehow we made great time. When we got into Ft. Worth we decided to go on and eat. We decided on Hoffbrau’s. YUM!


The Day I got “In Trouble” for buying something I collect…

It’s snowing outside if you can believe that. We’re supposed to get less than 1 inch accumulation, I almost think we’ve succeeded that though. Where am I you might ask? Well I’m sitting on the fireplace. No no no… not burning my rear… that shelf in front of it that is bricks and my back is up against the door handles. I love fireplaces like this!

Anyway… I thought this would be the perfect time to tell you about the perfect “gift” I bought the other day that I “got in trouble” for buying. Walk with me, or sit and read, whichever!

Years ago, and maybe I’ve told you this story, but years ago when I was about 10 years old, one Christmas I told my grandma that I wanted to collect something. She asked me what I wanted to collect and I told her I didn’t know but I wanted to collect something.

My grandma was an avid reader of magazines and the newspaper, and one magazine article in particular that happened around that time of me telling her that was about a lady who collected Mr. and Mrs. Clause Salt and Pepper Shakers. My grandma showed me the article and this lady had been collecting them for like 30 years or something and had an entire room in her house dedicated to them. Grandma asked if this was something I’d be interested in? I told her I don’t know, maybe. And so it started.

That year for Christmas my grandma bought me my first set of Mr. and Mrs. Clause Salt and Pepper shakers.

Sadly at the age of 10 years old I wasn’t real impressed with the gift. I know I know, I told her that I wanted to collect something and she was helping me out, but at that time I didn’t really treasure what had been given to me.


Christmas Tree 2016

A lot of people will have an opinion that is not favorable for the fact that we put up our Christmas tree, but that’s okay. We’re happy and we’re still very excited to celebrate Thanksgiving. And also, my big thing is to make sure that Tbug is involved with decorating our tree. I always want her to feel included and this is a way that I make it a point…. So 2 weeks ago, yes 2 weeks ago we put up our Christmas tree. No, I haven’t forgotten about Thanksgiving!

Anyway… We actually bought a new tree at the end of last year. We went out the day after Christmas and actually found this tree at Lowe’s. It’s so friggin cool. So it is prelit but there aren’t cords you have to plug in together to light it all up. Instead once you place this piece to that, the plug in is in the tree base itself. Very cool. Only bad thing is there is not an easy way to get light to our tree topper, but it doesn’t fit anyway… hit the ceiling so we left it off. I do believe it needs a topper but I’m not sure what to do just yet.


4th Annual Chili Cookoff – But remember the kids are the real winners!

Since I kind of took a small hiatus during October, I’m finally getting caught up with October goings on but I still have much to chat about… like the Chili Cookoff…

The Chili Cookoff was October 22nd. The day before we went out to Deb and Grady’s house to set up everything we could for the next day. I was fighting a horrendous cold so I tried to steer clear of people so I didn’t spread it although I was on the downhill slide of it. While Jared, Hubby, Karen, Deb, and SW set up, I sat at the patio table and set up an excel worksheet with the help of text messages/emails from my friend Kalem.


Newton County Christmas for Kids & Chili/Non-Chili Cookoff and Silent Auction

Imagine it’s Christmas morning. You’re laying under the covers and wondering just exactly what Santa has brought and left for you under the Christmas tree. Now, imagine that your family has stumbled across some hardship in the form of loss of jobs, extreme medical bills, etc. Christmas might seem like just another grim morning when you wake up. Enter the NewtonCounty Christmas for Kids organization.
What exactly is Newton County Christmas forKids? We are a non-profit organization run solely on the generous donations to help make a better Christmas for the less fortunate kids in Newton County. The Newton County Christmas for Kids is made up of volunteers from the local Newton County Fire Departments, Newton County Ambulance, and the Newton County Rescue and Recovery groups.
With local support, the Newton County Christmas for Kids helps over 190 children from Granby, Neosho, and Joplin Head Start with gifts at their Christmas parties each year as well as helping over 400 children in Newton County have a better Christmas each year. All donations are used to supply toys at Christmas for the less fortunate Children of Newton County.

Now that you have a history of what Newton County Christmas for Kids is, let me tell you about one of the fundraising events coming up October 22, 2016… Drum roll please…. The 4th Annual Newton County Christmas for Kids Chili/Non-Chili Cookoff and Silent Auction.
Four years ago we set off to come up with a way to help raise funds for the Newton County Christmas for Kids fund. The idea of a chili cookoff was presented, put into action, and here we are on the 4th annual chili cookoff.