Love and Food in the Big D

Friday, December 19, 2014

Kelley Christmas House, Mini Tour - 2014

Every year Christmas always seems to sneak up on me.  With Everleigh's birthday at the end of September  kicking off the long list of holidays, birthdays and anniversaries in our family (that just so happen to fall before New Years), the hub-bub of Christmas usually hits me like a ton of bricks.  

This year though, I felt the urge to "deck our halls" WAAAAY before Thanksgiving even hit us.  Maybe it was the cold snap we had in early November, or the Christmas commercials that I swear I saw before Halloween.. or maybe it was the fact that we WEREN'T frantically trying to re-paint a room, or trying to get new furniture in the house before family arrived (like we were doing last year).  Whatever the reason, I was ready for it... Chad on the other hand, not so much.  ;)  After a few weeks of slow and steady persuasion (read: nagging ;) he thankfully came around.  ;) 

A few weeks ago, with plenty of time to enjoy our festive house, it FINALLY began to FEEL a lot like Christmas at our house  :)  

So without further ado, a Kelley Christmas house MINI tour
(because we really didn't put up THAT much 

 The one thing that I was most excited about this year was the purchase of our new Balsam Hill Fraser Fir Garland.  It definitely was more than I would've normally spent on garland but I really wanted something that looked realistic and would be long lasting. 

Compared to the fresh fraser fir wreath hanging nearby, the garland looks amazingly realistic.  
So very pleased!  Can't wait to get more "filler" for it next year..this year I chose to keep it pretty simple.  

We actually have plans to eventually re-stain the whole mantle to match the kitchen cabinets (we aren't big fans of the cherry stain)..but since Jesus is the reason for the season, the previous owner's stencil "God with Us" seems fitting for our Christmas decor.  

Took some FREE fraser fir Christmas tree cuttings and went crazy covering the top of our console and making a new, simple wreath with berry stems and wired ribbon from Michaels.  

And because what post would be complete without Everleigh.. here she is, redecorating her very own tree again.  

Glitter balls off.  Glitter balls on.  Glitter balls off.  Glitter balls all on one single branch at the very bottom of the tree making half her tree bare.  Glitter balls off.  ;)  And repeat.  

And because (according to Everleigh) her Christmas tree decorating skills were needed at her cousins house, she went crazy over there too.  ;) 

Friday, November 07, 2014

Fall Fun at the Dallas Arboretum - 2014

Ever since I was a little kid, Fall has been my favorite season.  Even growing up in deep, deep, DEEP South Texas, where the leaves didn't change color, the weather was a constant degree of HOT or HOTTER almost all year long.. (read: yuck, or yuckier) there was still something about the Fall that appealed to me.  So when I moved to Dallas 8 years ago.. and I realized that you could, in fact, experience all four SEASONS in Texas, I was ECSTATIC.  The leaves change color, the weather changes and pumpkins come out in mass.  Especially at the Dallas Arboretum! It really is a sight to see.  I can't imagine the shear amount of truckloads that must filter in for days to have the number of pumpkins they have there each year.   According to their website, there are over 65,000 pumpkins, gourds and squash!  

This year, Chad surprised us with some time off of work so we could take our bear to join in the festivities...and officially welcome Fall to Dallas.  She LOVED every second.  :) 

 Excited about the new squirrel friend she made.  :)

Really was the friendliest Squirrel around.. 
Everleigh and that squirrel "chatted" for a good 10 minutes :)

Happy Fall Ya'll!!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Kelley's Go Camping - Broken Bow, OK

I usually don't pay much attention to my birthday as it comes and goes each year.  Other than wanting to spend the day with my family and possibly close friends (if given the chance)... the day usually comes without much fanfare or production.  And that's usually the way I like it.  This year though, the day hit me like a rock.  And NOT in a good way.  It WANTED me to remember it.  Late Monday evening, right before my birthday on Tuesday the 14th, the countdown began on 36 miserable hours of the worst stomach bug I have ever remembered having.  Worst BIRTHDAY EVER.  I was miserable and I hated every second of it.  

Luckily for me, the timing was right (if there ever really is a right time to get a stomach bug) and it came and went before it had a chance to ruin our weekend camping plans to Broken Bow, OK  :)  Thank you baby Jesus!  Our trip was still on and we were MORE than a little excited to get out of town for a couple days.  

It was such an amazing Birthday redemption weekend.  Perfect weather.  A very cooperative bear.  An amazingly beautiful drive....and nature for miles.  :)  We can't wait to do it again.  

Let the (Cabin) Camping Adventure BEGIN!  

So we didn't rough it or anything.  Cause who has time for that kind of tent camping non-sense.  ;)  
We did go without cell service and a wifi connection though.  That's "Roughing It"...right?  ;) 

Our home away from home for the weekend.. :)

Hidden amongst the trees.. 

Our very own BEAR to welcome us!  :)


After a 3 hour trek, Momma Bear and Baby Bear were happy to be out of that car! 
Silly Selfie time :)

The next day.. (Saturday, October 18, 2014) after a leisurely morning, we attempted a hike :)
(Everleigh was NOT a fan of the pack we tried to put her daddy came to the rescue and carried her most of the way ;)  She really did enjoy it though.. so it was worth the back ache.  ;)

She was easily entertained by throwing rocks in the water.  :)

Peter Toth Indian Sculpture - Forest Heritage Center
Located near the main entrance of the Forest Heritage Center, this Indian Sculpture is one in a 50 state series known as the "Trail of Tears" sculptures by Hungarian artist, Peter Toth. Mr.Toth came to Oklahoma to sculpt Oklahoma's Indian monuments. Mr. Toth's goal in life was to complete at least one sculpture in each of the fifty states. To date, he has done 67 monuments. All of his monuments are his own concept of the North American Indian and bear many similarities, except for certain characteristics, which pertain to the Indians of that region, such as feathers, headbands, or other decorations.

She spent least 30 minutes just throwing rocks into the lake.  :)

Dinner Time at this quaint little Southern Spot - The Blue Rooster 

With these cuties.  :)

Sunday - October 19th, 2014
One last hike before heading back home.  

Our new little Mud Bug friend.  

What a fabulous birthday it turned out to be :) :)