Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Merry Christmas Y'All

Warm Christmas wishes from our family to yours this holiday season!!!  We are excited to celebrate the birth of our Savior and what a wonderful gift that it was.  Recalling 2010 makes us thankful for the blessings of family, health, & happiness.  We have had a busy year and would like to share a  few highlights (click on pictures to see them larger or on the highlighted links to see more about that topic).

Nicole turned 15 this year and is quickly approaching that milestone 16th birthday.  We have been "enjoying" riding with her as she learns to drive.  So far she has done well if you don't count some curbs and lawns that now have tire marks on/in them :)

She also finally got that puppy she has been begging us for for years!!  I guess dreams can come true. (click here for the puppy story)

She still plays a mean game of volleyball.  She was chosen to be captain of the JV squad, and was moved up to varsity to play a few games.  Prosper volleyball made it as far as the Regional Final game, but lost to Lovejoy - the #1 volleyball team in ALL the state of Texas.  Prosper finished 5th in the state. She recently tried out for and made the 17's National team for the Texas Titans volleyball club, so she will continue to play volleyball throughout the school year.

Finally, she has served as Mia Maid class president for the last year, but that will change in January when she turns 16.

Melanie turned 13 this year (that makes 2 teenagers in the Romney house!).  She continues to be an outstanding student. She made the high jump team at school in the spring which was something she had never tried before.  She discovered that she really loves to jump and is quite good at it.  She finished the season taking 4th place at the district meet.  She also played volleyball on the 8th grade A team.  Her team won their district, and in fact did not drop a set the entire season!  She is currently playing her first club volleyball season on the 14's Elite Texas Titans Team.

This summer she and Nicole split time babysitting for their cousins and training Blossom to do tricks.

At church Melanie is serving as the Beehive class Secretary - perfect for an organized girl like her!

Harrison, or as we like to call him Big Handsome, is 10 years old and a 5th grader at Rogers Middle School this year.  He has lots of friends, and you can usually find him playing football out in front of the house with kids from the neighborhood.  This summer he and his friend Ty spent many hours fishing in the lake out front.  They even caught some decent sized fish!

He played football for the 5th grade Prosper Eagles and is currently playing basketball for Da' Heat.  His basketball coach, Coach Slim, gave him the nickname of SlowMo a few years back, because "he has so many skills, the only way you can see 'em all is in slow motion!" ;)

This summer he spent a week at Cub Scout Twilight Camp and is currently working on earning his Webelo Award.

Ryder, the Romney caboose, turned 8 this year!!!  He was baptized on November 27.  He was also excited to turn 8 because now he can go to Cub Scouts too.  He has earned his Bobcat award and is working hard on earning his Wolf award.

Ryder played his first season of tackle football this year for the Prosper Pirates.  He loves to play, did really well, and had some great coaches who taught him not only about football, but about responsibility and accountability.   A few weeks into the season Ryder broke his pinky finger when another kid was horsing around and knocked him down. This led to some x-rays, and a couple of weeks of missing practice and games.

Ryder spent his summer playing outside with friends and swimming in the pool.

Darren and I spend our time making sure everyone gets to scouts, mutual, church, school and sports on time.  We love watching the kids play in all of their many sporting events.

Darren is currently teaching Seminary to the Freshmen at 6:00 am every  morning.  I continue to be the Stake Family Search Indexing Director.

We have LOVED having family come to town.  We had a great time with Grandpa and Grandma Muffett at the Fort Worth Stockyards, and felt so lucky to have my brother Win and his family come spend some time with us early in September.  We had an awesome time together, and my brother (an Oregon State alumni) got us awesome seats in Cowboy Stadium (4th row!!!!) for the OSU vs. TCU football game!  We also had a couple of great visits from our Houston cousins, the Tonini's, and were able to enjoy Six Flags and lots of swimming.

Once again, Merry Christmas to y'all from our family to yours.  We send you our love and wish you a warm and wonderful holiday season!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Ryder's Baptism - It's Great to Be 8

On Saturday November 27, 2010 our youngest child, Ryder, was baptized and became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  It was a wonderful way to end Thanksgiving week. The Toninis (Uncle Greg & Aunt Raena and cousins Drew, Jacob, Corina & Carson) drove up from Houston to stay with us for the holidays, so they were able to be there along with Kimball, Angela, Maya, Adrienne, and Morgan Romney.

There was lots to do in order to prepare since it wasn't part of the regularly scheduled Stake Baptism Day.  Programs, talks, music, etc. all had to be prepared in advance.  With so much going on something did get overlooked - we forgot to bring Ryder's white baptismal clothes to the church!  We discovered this at 10:45 when Ryder went to change and get ready.  Soooooooooo, with only 15 minutes until it was time to start, I drove very quickly home to retrieve the forgotten clothing.  I managed to make it back just after 11:00 (no speeding tickets, thank you very much). Ryder did a quick change and then proceeded to have a very special day.  During the actual baptism, when Ryder was in the font with his dad, he actually got to be baptized twice just to make sure the wording of the baptismal prayer was said correctly. All these little hiccups made for a baptism day that we will remember for years to come.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Guys and Gals

Here are a couple more photos from our recent family photo shoot.  It was almost November and still an absolutely gorgeous day.  I LOVE Texas :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My Secret Garden - Motivating or Discouraging?

My garden is a mess!  I haven't done anything with it in months.  No watering or weeding or trimming or picking - nothing.  I ended up with a few spare minutes the other day and thought to myself, "I really need to pull up some of the weeds and dying plants before winter sets in."  So I went out and started working and lo and behold found this:
That's right, fully grown, ripe watermelon that I didn't even know were there.  By the way, I didn't even plant watermelon this year - these are volunteers!

I also found these raspberries which was a surprise since it didn't appear my 1 year old raspberry bush was producing berries, but I guess it was.
And of course I have a healthy bush of serrano peppers - again, I didn't even plant serrano peppers this year. They just came on their own.
We had many wonderful cantaloupe this summer, but I thought all the vines were dead and that they had stopped producing - I guess I was wrong!
I also had a wonderful beet crop this summer, and left some of the smaller beets in the ground when I picked the rest to can them - looks like they grew up :)
I also pulled up my 6 sunflower plants at the end of summer - they were attracting too many bees!  I guess they weren't ready to go yet (the bees or the sunflowers).
All in all it was a wonderful surprise harvest.  I still have more beets and carrots and tomatoes and raspberries yet to pick.  I also picked lots and lots of tomatoes this day, but they didn't make the pictures.
We have obviously had some magnificent weather this fall - sunny and 80 degrees most every day.  A rain shower would come through once every couple weeks to keep things wet.  I'm embarrassed to admit that I don't think my garden did half as well when I was actually tending it.  Next year I think I'll just toss some seeds on the dirt and come back in a couple months to see what grew.  Neglect - the key to a bountiful harvest.
Parsley bush is thriving
Cherry tomatoes on the vine
My weeded garden

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Dear Grandma . . .

A picture's worth a thousand words - and the tears of joy you will shed when you see this picture!


Your amazing and adorable grandchildren

P.S.  You're welcome :)

P.S.2  I have many more to share :)  :)

P.S.3  Click on the picture to bring up the full size image - then copy and save to your computer - well, if you want a copy that is :)  :)  :)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Are You Ready For Some Football?

Ryder's having a stellar year playing football.  It's amazing how much he is learning.  He started out the season as the new kid on the team, so they just used him to fill in on both offense and defense, but he has shown great improvement and is now a starting running back.  I just love this picture.  When Ryder first saw it his comment was, "Mom, Chase (red #77) is holding."  Love that he understands the game.

Here he is again.

He can also block bigger kids.

And recover fumbles.

And of course do the fun stuff like have everyone cheer for you as you burst through a banner! (Yes, they do have their own Pirate Cheer Squad!)

Life on the football field is good!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Not For the Squeamish!

Wow, have we had a time of it lately.  Normally we are super healthy and see our physicians only for immunizations and well visits.  Unfortunately, both Melanie and Ryder have had to make trips to the doctor in the last few weeks.

First, Ryder broke his finger at football practice.  Now, I know you may be thinking, "that's what happens when 2nd graders play tackle football," but it happened when another kid tackled him when he wasn't looking - goofing off.  Ryder doesn't usually cry much, and he didn't this time, but I knew when he didn't want to go right back in that something was up.  He sat out with it on ice for a while and then tried to play during his very favorite tackling drill at the end of practice, but he couldn't do it.  It just didn't seem to be improving, so I took him in to have it x-rayed that night.

Sure enough his right pinky finger was broken.  They put him in a splint and scheduled him with an orthopedist to have it evaluated further.  Fortunately a splint and no football for 2 weeks was all he ended up needing.

OK, now for the gross part.  Seriously, if you can't handle gross, don't look at these next pictures.

Melanie tells me she had a hang nail that she pulled off, but when she pulled it off she also pulled a big chunk of skin out from under her toenail.  Well, it swelled up like this.  We tried to treat it at home, but nothing worked, and she could hardly walk and certainly couldn't play volleyball.  So I took her in, and they numbed her toe up and removed a portion of her toenail. and gave her some antibiotics.

I took this picture while the doc was off looking for a silver nitrate stick to stop the bleeding.  When he was done he wrapped her toe up in this enormous bandage.

Do you think it's big enough?  Melanie wanted to go back to school that day, just to show off her ouchie.

I am so crossing my fingers that we are done with doctors for a very, very, very long time!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Goody Bags

Every year I get at least one chance to make the goody bag for Nicole's volleyball team.  Basically it just means we're providing snacks for the girls to eat before their match, so they'll have lots of energy and WIN!

Last year I got to do the bags for their game on Homecoming Day, so I made these bags with little mini mums attached.

That was fun.  So this year I decided to make a fabric gift bag to put all their stuff in.  Here are the bags all sewed up and lined up.  I just love the volleyball ribbon I found for the handles!

Here's a peek at what was inside.  I'm pretty sure no one went hungry!  By the way, those Butterfinger Snackerz are delicious :)

What's inside
The girls must have had plenty of energy, because they beat their opponent easily.

Now the rest of this is just a tutorial to follow if you want to make a fabric gift bag.

How to Make a Fabric Gift/Goody Bag

You'll need:

1/3 yd. of 44" fabric per bag
12" x 22" piece of coordinating felt per bag
2 feet of ribbon for handle
2 feet of ribbon for ties
pinking shears for cutting top edge
coordinating thread
sewing machine

1/2" seam allowance is used for all seams

1.  First cut your fabric and felt rectangles.  I cut my 44" wide fabric into 12" strips with my rotary cutter, then cut them in half to make my 12" x 22" rectangles.  For my bags I used one black, one print, and one felt rectangle for a coordinating effect.

2.  Next I made a "fabric sandwich" layering fabric, felt, fabric together.  The felt should be against the wrong side of the fabrics so that the outside of the sandwich is the outside of your fabrics.

3.  Then with the layers pinned together I measured and cut the sandwich in half to make one front and one back piece.

4.  I flipped one piece over so that the finished bag would have a different fabric on the front and on the back.

5.  Cut the top edge of each piece with pinking shears, and pin handles and ties in place.  I just laid a yard stick on each piece and placed a handle at 4" and 8" with the tie pinned at 6".

6.  Stitch across the top of each piece to lock handle and ties in place.

7.  Pin and sew front and back pieces right sides together along 3 edges (2 sides and base).

8.  To create the bag base open bottom seam out flat to create a diamond shape as shown.  Draw a line where the triangle is 2.5" across.  Pin and sew across line.

9.  It should look like this.

10.  Turn right side out and there you have it!  Fill with your choice of goodies or gifts :)

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