Happy Birthday Sofia!

Happy 6th Birthday, sweet Sofia!

Doll Bed

This has been a very long-term project for no other reason, than that I was just lazy about finishing it. I found the wood doll bed at a tag sale and then painted it. This past week I started working on the bedding, which only took about 2 1/2 hours to finish. I may add more bedding pieces in the future, but this is it for now. The Heather Bailey fabric is one of my favorites, so I was glad to be able to use it for the bed.

The Day of Eva's Birthday

We did not do very much on the day of Eva's birthday, as I think we were all still exhausted from her party! When the kids woke up in the morning, we let Eva open her presents first thing. Then I made mickey mouse pancakes for the kids and put a candle on Eva's. Later that day, after Justin got home, we decided to take Eva and Andrew to Rainforest Cafe to celebrate. Unfortunately Eva was so scared of all the robotic animals, that Justin had to take her out of the restaurant and she didn't even get to eat her food. Andrew and I stayed for the meal while Justin and Eva walked around the mall. We had ordered delicious food that we had to get boxed up. Meanwhile, she ate a pretzel.

Eva's Birthday Party

I'm sooo late on this, but here are some photos from Eva's birthday party. We hosted it several days before her actual birthday at Gma and Gpa's house. It was so very cold out, but we were mighty thankful that it didn't rain during the party, as predicted. The party was a success and it seemed like everyone had a good time. We had lots of fun, especially Eva. She just beamed when the birthday song was sung to her.
Although we tried to keep the party very small, we still ended up having over 30 people there. We are blessed to have so many wonderful family and friends nearby.
I still can't believe little Eva is 2! This is such a wonderful age and I'm looking forward to seeing this little toddler blossom into a little girl!

2008 Book List

Wow! I got a lot of reading done in 2008-- 19 books. So I decided to write a little about the books that really stood out. I'm disappointed that I didn't get to finish every book on the list, but I'll add those on to the 2009 list. First, here's a list of books I did finish. (To Kill A Mockingbird and all the Jane Austen books were selections from my book club).

These is my Words
I Capture the Castle
To Kill a Mockingbird
Pride, Prejudice, and Jasmin Field
Eat Cake
Mansfield Park
Pride and Prejudice
Sense and Sensibility
Northanger Abbey
The Secret Garden
The House on Mango Street
Fall on your Knees
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime
The Case for Christ
Love in the Time of Cholera

The most memorable books were all six of the Jane Austen novels-- each one delicious for its own reasons. My favorite two are Persuasion for the wonderful character development and the exquisite way that Austen is able to write about the conversations in people's heads. I also love Pride and Prejudice for the love story that leaves you yearning for lots of romance! Who doesn't need a Mr. Darcy in her life?

Night is a book that every person should read at some point in their life. It's an incredibly fast read, at about only 100 pages, of a person's memory of the Holocaust. It is heart wrenching and scary to read about a person who lives on the brink of death and struggles to survive at practically any cost. It is an absolutely stark look at many of the evils inflicted on innocent people during the Holocaust.

There were several books on the list that were just plain fodder and a few that were national best sellers, award winners, but didn't quite live up to my expectations.

One book was by far my favorite for the year and it was an absolute surprise. I attended a fundraising event for some friends and local authors were there to sell their books and donate a portion of the sales to the organization (PEO). Each author had several minutes to introduce him/herself and discuss their books. The last author, Nancy E. Turner, captured the audience as soon as she started talking. She lives in Tucson and consequently writes about the Tucson area through the perspective of a territorialist in the late 1800s, early 1900s. It is in a diary format and is very loosely based on her great-grandmother. The book is almost like a Western for women, and it's filled with romance, action, family relationships, survival, and lots of history. This book doesn't fall under the genre I typically read, but I was so intrigued with the author's presentation that I purchased this book and the sequel to it. It does not disappoint!

On to my 2009 booklist. There are soooo many books on my list and hopefully I will be able to do lots of reading this year!