Since 2011 is coming to an end, I thought it would be fun to look back over the past year of this little blog's life, along with ours of course, and round up some of my favorite posts.  I have to say, I really enjoy this blogging thing!  So out of the seventy-seven posts written to date in 2011, here are some of my favorites.


It's gotta be the spiced pumpkin chocolate chip cookies I made several times this past fall.  I made them for the first time last year but nailed down the recipe over the four or five batches made in the past couple of months.


Even though there's been fun little projects along the way, like homemade wreaths, birthday presents and little furniture re-vamps, our best did-it-ourselves project has to be our wine.  We made it from start to finish over the period of about three months and now... there is not a bottle left to be found.


This one has to go to my husband, who when I told we needed to bring a green dessert for a St. Patrick's Day dinner, much to his amusement, he suggested something eco-friendly.  He's a witty one!


I love fall, so naturally, the best "loving" post has to be my fall fashion one.  I found some cognac-colored boots shortly after writing that post too!


Theo, of course!  He's about twice this size now, however.


There was some stiff competition here, considering we ventured from the ritzy beaches of West Palm to the gorgeous mountains of Vail.  So it's a tie between Vail for our first anniversary and Cocoa Beach for my grandmother's 80th birthday.  Both were so extremely special for very unique reasons.


Ok, so it's the only award of the year, but winning "Best Group" at The Stanley Hotel's Shining Ball was pretty sweet.


Pinterest, duh.


We found a house!  And we close in less than a month!  More details soon...



I loved Kathleen's idea of a grown-up Christmas list this past month.  She's featured a few on her blog and I love the perspective it gives during the holidays.


Well technically it's not ours, but it's definitely the biggest and best accomplishment of the year... my mom earning her Master's.


Besides ones from my mom and mother-in-law, because that's biased of course.  This was a tie, between two way too sweet and generous comments.  Seriously, these totally made my day.

"Just wanted to swing by and say how much I love your and Ryan's blog. My girlfriend and I just bought our first house out here in Boston back in May and just love the projects, the decorating, the cooking, the wine, and most notably similar collecting our wine corks. Needless to say, you've inspired us to begin our own photo blog! Congrats on the house, it seems like you are living life to the fullest!"

and this one:
"Hey girl - I just spent a good 20 minutes looking at your blog (I may or may not still be at work right now....) and can't decide whether I want to find someone to marry so you can take the pictures, buy a house so you can decorate it, or become famous so you can blog about my life. It's fantastic! You are amazing - SO creative!"
We hope you enjoyed looking through some of our favorites over the past year and had a fabulous 2011 yourself.  We cannot wait to see what 2012 will bring... a house is already in the works so who knows what else will come our way!


We hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!  Our Christmas season was pretty busy up until the day of, so having a relaxing Christmas day was just what we needed.  My grandparents were still in town, so it was wonderful to be able to spend lots of time with them too.

On Christmas Eve Eve, we had dinner with Carol and Stan, a tradition that used to be every Christmas Eve, but has now moved to Christmas Eve Eve to accommodate for growing family and more people to see.  Thankfully they're flexible and it's great to see them whatever the day.  Then on Christmas Eve, we spent the morning at Ryan's mom's house, went to our church for the Christmas Eve service, attended an annual get-together and then headed over to his grandparent's for chili and more gifts.  Oh yeah, and then we went to a beautiful Christmas Eve midnight service at First Pres downtown!

On Christmas day, we relaxed, spent time with my Nana and Grandpa, and stuffed ourselves on my mom's amazing food, naturally.  Here are some pictures that tell the story much better than words.  I forgot to take some during the few days before, probably because we were so busy.  It was all wonderful though...

Our handmade ornaments from last year sitting pretty on the dining room table.  Kind of crazy to think that we've already had two Christmases as a married couple.

Ryan's favorite food in the world, my mom's prime rib.  It is a Christmas gift in itself, as you can tell...

Merry, merry Christmas everyone!  We hope yours was blessed by God and spent with loved ones.



This past weekend the whole family, including my grandparents, went up to Fort Collins to attend my mom's graduation ceremonies and celebrate!  She graduated from CSU(GO RAMS!!!) with her Master's of Social Work.  Oh yeah, and she did it with a 4.0 GPA and while working and doing her internship.  Yep, she's super-mom!

Here we are at the first ceremony, which was for her fellow MSWs.  This is where she got hooded.

It's official!

I love this next picture of my mom and my sister... she jumped in at the last second and it ended up being one of the sweetest pictures ever.

If you know our family at all, you know we're not the average, run-of-the-mill, boring, old family, not by a long stretch.  So of course, we ended up with some pictures that were a little strange...

Ok, now we're normal...

My grandparents came out from Michigan to celebrate with us.  I love having them here and am so glad to have seen them several times this year, especially during Christmas!

The hubs was so proud... and a big shout-out goes out to him for taking so many pictures and being so incredibly supportive of me, my mom, and my family.

The fabulous foursome... I joked with my mom that it's like Sex and the City goes to college!

Now we're at the second ceremony of the day.  This one was for all the Master's graduates and was held at Moby Arena.

Kind of intimidating... that is a whole lot of very educated people in one room.

CONGRATULATIONS MOM!  We are all so proud of you and how you have accomplished so much in the past several years!  You are going to be one kick-butt social worker!