24 December 2008

...and to all a good night!

Christmas Eve. How ever did it get here so quickly? Wasn't Thanksgiving just last week?

We are in Austin (Pflugerville, actually, having a pfantastic and pfun time...) visiting Tim and Megan, Kennedy and Lleyton. And waiting for Santa to come. Although he will come only for Lleyton and Kennedy.

You see, I had to call the North Pole earlier in the season to put in an official "hold delivery" request for us. And it took me forever to get an actual person! (elf?) Automated systems abound and let me tell you, I think I actually got someone in India at ONE point. I think this outsourcing thing is really getting out of hand.

But I finally got through and was able to get my request to delay delivery till Saturday as all five of my grandchildren will be there to wake up and have Christmas at Gramma and Papa's. And we need Santa to visit.

It totally pays to have friends in high places.

So while it may be Christmas Eve technically it will be Christmas Eve for us on the 27th. But for the rest of you, have a restful and joyous Christmas Eve.

May you have been good enough to get lots from Santa. And may you be surrounded by those you love and who, in turn, love you.

11 December 2008

To my adorable canines...

Izzie: "Yes, you needed something?"

It's a dog's life...literally.

Yup, this is definitely the life.

Nothing special here. Just a shout-out to Shelby and Izzie who have followed me around with perplexed looks on their faces the past couple of weeks as I've gone "to and fro" with boxes of decorations, wrapping supplies, trips to the attic, up and down the stairs. And then we had cold enough weather that it actually SNOWED in HOUSTON! Nope, didn't stick, but hey, it snows here about once a decade so it makes the news. And Izzie was wondering WHAT was with the cold fluff stuff. Plus it was super cold outside.

So I put on the fire and they have been comatose lying on their special pillow, soaking in the ambiance ("the holiday spirit" combined with a real fire = Doggie Heaven).

Merry Christmas, mutts. I love you guys.

Shoes for kids...

I like Robeez shoes - I've bought them for my grandkids since Day 1. They are soft, washable, lasting and according to my sources, when outgrown do well on eBay! So I get emails from them throughout the year. Well, they sent one today about a program where you send (free) eCard wishes and for EVERY eCard you send, they donate $5 to Kids in Distressed Situations (K.I.D.S.) We don't get anything out of it except warm fuzzies for doing something so easy and simple that enables another party (Robeez) to make a donation. Okay, it's perhaps "shameless" product placement on the part of Robeez but, hey, I'm OKAY with that! They DO make a GREAT product, my grands have been wearing them long before I heard of this donation program and I'm more than happy to give them a product quality shout out!

So go ahead and start emailing. And don't forget to have a look at the cute shoes - especially their latest "invention", a soled shoe line called "Tredz" which a very cute! And I have the grandchildren to prove it...

09 December 2008

Deck them halls, ya'll...

I've spent my time recooperating productively I'll have you know. The house is now decorated to the "nines" and today I finished wrapping gifts (at least the ones I have so far...hurry up, Amazon, time's a-waistin'!) Still have cards to get out but that's small potatoes compared to getting the halls decked and the gifts wrapped! So, for your "viewing enjoyment", I present Christmas 2008 at the Drennon house...

03 December 2008

And now I have a CTD...

Luke discovers Gramma Cheri's Famous Apple Pie on Thanksgiving Day

...which stands for "child transmitted disease". I have to make an appointment and go see my physician posthaste on the morrow as I am miserable right now. I want to take my nose off and put it in the freezer for awhile.

As if.

But I do not for a minute regret HOW I got this "lovely" sinus infection and head cold. Who can resist the chubby arms held up to you by your grandson who has JUST learned to say 'gramma, hold you?'

And the kisses. He gives kisses. Big, sloppy, wet kisses. Melt your heart, make you float kisses.

So now I'm paying the piper. But it was SO totally worth it.

I miss you, Lukey-Luke. And I hope YOUR cold is better.

A long time ago, on a planet far, far away...

I love facebook. I've found friend there that I haven't been able to find on classmates.com or through other avenues. And in reading the "walls" of those friends, have discovered many wondrous things not the least of which is this wonderful tribute to Star Wars and John Williams. It brought a tear to my eye...through laughing so hard! :)

But seriously, it's seriously CLEVER and definitely worth watching and hearing.
And thanks to Mark Charles who had it on his facebook wall.

When it rains...well, you know...

It appears to be "take mom to SURGERY" week around these parts. As previously posted, my mom had cataract surgery on Monday. Doing well. All fine there. But yesterday, an hour or so after leaving Mom off at her house following her post-op appointment with the optometrist, I get a call from Mike saying "mom is in the hospital and had surgery". Talk about confused and having an adrenaline rush! "But I just dropped her off a bit ago! Why didn't she call me?? What's going on???"

Turns out it was HIS mom up in Bedford. She'd had abdominal pain on the weekend and finally agreed to go to the ER early Monday morning. Tests. Redo test. Infection of some sort. To make a long (and believe me, it's a LONG one) story short, she had keyhole surgery last evening to remove her gall bladder. She was discharged this morning and (hopefully) is doing well now at home. Jenjer works at the hospital where the surgery was done and actually had her in her care last night (Jenjer is a nurse's tech) so we felt she was in especially good hands!

We have high hopes for an UNeventful remainder of the week on the health front. Actually, uneventful on ALL fronts would be nice, thank you very much.

02 December 2008


Mom's surgery went really well. In fact, as soon as we were in the car to go home, we headed to Starbucks for the obligatory post-surgical caffeine-in-a-red-Christmas-cup toast. What? You never heard of it? When's the last time YOU took someone for cataract surgery, pray tell??

Anyhoo, she was home by 3pm and "took the day off". We go back for a follow-up Tuesday (which is technically today since it is 12:36am and I never got the update done on Monday...sigh...)

Soon she will literally be "seeing straight".

Talk about an eye-opening experience...

01 December 2008

Waiting for Mom in surgery...

I'm on my iPhone in the waiting room at the Sugarland Surgicenter waiting for the doctor to do Mom's right eye cataract surgery. It's outpatient so we should be home by early afternoon. We got home from our Keller trip about 11pm yesterday so she barely had time to get turned around before heading out this morning. We stopped in Pflugerville on our way home yesterday so we could eat dinner with Tim and Megan. It took "like forever" to get from Keller to Austin due to what the Brits aptly call "sheer weight of traffic". I suppose everybody (and their mother - ha ha!) was driving home following the Thanksgiving holiday. Anyway, we spent HOURS in stop-and-go traffic on I-35 south. Sigh...but we had a good audio book ("Twilight" by Stephanie Meyer oddly enough - Mike and I had seen the movie Tuesday night...) which was fortunate because otherwise it would have seemed even longer. I was sick of football on the radio and I think Mike was sick of Christmas music. :)

So we are home, Mom's getting her eye "done" and I'll post how she's doing later on today. I also hope to post some photos later too.

28 November 2008

No, I haven't died...

It seems ages since I've posted and there's a reason for that. I'm up in Keller with 3/5ths of the grandchildren and 2/3 of the children. For someone who hates math, I got rather technical about those figures I suppose. But we left last Friday to come up north and it's been go-go-go ever since. I'm catching my breath right now as youngest grand, Mirai, sleeps peacefully in the guest nursery. We have her basically for the day (yeah!) while Jenjer, who has worked two night shifts in a row, is home hopefully peacefully sleeping as well after getting off between 7 and 8am today...yucky hours.

Thanksgiving was a blur - dinner for 12 at 1pm yesterday followed by a massive kitchen clean-up, dessert and the ladies going to see the matinee of the movie "Australia" (which by the way is FANTASTIC! Go, no, RUN to see it! I think it's a great date movie and plan to take Mike back to see it so will get to see it twice! Whoo-hoo!). By 8:30pm yesterday, I was "dead woman walking" and had a hard time staying up till what was an EARLY bedtime for me between 10 and 11pm. Tim and Megan's crew were in George West celebrating with Megan's folks. We plan to drop by Austin on the way home to Houston and get a quick visit in.

So the week has been and will continue to be full of FAMILY which is as it should be!

Just wanted to "check in" and show of the fancy-dancy blog banner Jennifer put together for me as well.

Hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving (all you Americans) and let you know that indeed I am still in the land of the living even if my blog would indicate otherwise. More updates and PHOTOS later...

18 November 2008

My little musician...

Ah, the thrill of seeing AND hearing your grandson's first violin recital! Jennifer just posted this video and I have to share it. Ben started violin last summer when he was three years old. Initially, Miss Elizabeth, his ever patient and very talented teacher, had him practice on a foam violin (which they call a "foamalin") until he has down how to hold, position and bow. I believe he received his real violin just a couple of weeks ago.

Now, I'm a grandmother so I have privilege of being inordinately proud. But also being a musician, I see great potential in this young man! And I'm ever so proud of him (and his parents) for the many trips to lessons and then practices at home that have occurred over the past several months. Music brings such joy and peace to my life, and I'm seldom happier than when I'm singing my heart out (voice being MY "instrument"). I certainly have high hopes that music in all its forms will do the same for our young Ben. And who knows, perhaps he'll be a vocalist as well some day?

Ben's 1st violin recital from jenny b on Vimeo.

You can "read all about it!" at Jenny's blog. Way to go, Ben! I'm SO proud of you!!!

Also, you are QUITE the handsome young man in your concert attire. Hmmm, does Janie & Jack make tuxedos in 4T??

Happy Birthday to Megan...a wee bit late...

Megan with niece Mirai on Mirai's 1st Birthday, July 2008

November 15th was Megan's birthday and we traveled to the Austin area to help celebrate. It was a very busy weekend for her - helping a friend who is getting married in a couple of weeks with her "bridal hair-do" appointment, helping me get the kids photographed for my Christmas card photo, getting ready for a baby shower she was hosting the next day, HAVING COMPANY (us!) and on top of all that, nursing a head cold.

Getting "old" ain't for sissies. :) I can say that since she's ONLY 28! I'm 51 and still recooping...

Megan at 4 years

And I did be sure to gift the traditional "birthday slipper pair". Some things are just sacred and can't be messed with.

But while she was out helping Lonna decide on her bridal "do", we were scurrying around at home trying to get some things done to surprise her with later on that day. I baked a chocolate cake (which for someone who is swearing off carbs for, oh, probably the rest of her life, was a labor of LOVE since it smelled so durn good....Kennedy was right there to help me be strong and do all the beater licking of cake batter and icing...such a sacrifice on her part). Then we got flowers to arrange. We sealed up the cake in the "cake taker" and Tim hid it in the kid's shower under some towels. We swore Kennedy to silence.

After getting the kid's pictures taken, we headed to P.F. Chang's for some serious birthday chow. We had the perfect table in a corner which, if you've ever dined out with kids in a nice place, is the optimum dining pleasure location for both the other patrons and ourselves. The kids aren't so overstimulated by all the noise which is huge. If you've ever eaten at P.F. Chang's, you'll know how loud it can be! Shoot, I'M overstimulated when we leave (as well as hoarse from trying to talk over everyone else and be heard) so the corner table was a real boon!

Then on the way home we talked about how another birthday was over, how they kind of waned as you got older, etc. Then when we got home, Tim lit all the candles on the cake in the bathroom while we kept Megan in the kitchen. Then the "amazing blaze" came forth with us singing and she WAS surprised! Then gifts came out and we had a proper birthday party at the end of a very long day for her.

Birthday Cake with 28 candles

So it's a bit late on the blog front, but happy birthday Megan! We love you!!

Tim at 7 months

And I know your "cowboy" loves you too.

12 November 2008

Coupon heaven!!

The bad economy is good in some ways - I guess stores are desperate for sales leading up to the "supposed" best sales period of the year. I've received, in the past two days, two SUPER coupons worth sharing (and both "shareable") so print them out and enjoy.

The first one is good Nov 14-16th and the second one good Nov 13-16th so get shopping - posthaste!

And don't say I never did nuthin' for ya!

(P.S. I notice upon publishing that the entire coupon does not show up. If you want one of these "in it's entirety", email me and I will send it to you.)

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Friends and Family. 25% Off* entire purchase. New Holiday Arrivals. Shop now. Print this email & bring it to a shop or redeem online with the code above.
Frinds & Family 25% off* entire purchase including new holiday arrivals. November 14-16, 2008.
Use Online Code: JJFRIEND. Print this email & bring it to a store or shop online with the code above.

Your Friend wants you to get 30% off¹ during our best-ever friends and family event. We're calling it Give & Get, because for every purchase you make, we give 5% of the amount you spend to Boys & Girls Clubs of America, a nonprofit partner selected by Your Friend.

During our August Give and Get event, we donated $1.3 million to our nonprofit partners. So here's a proven way to make your shopping count.

Certain restrictions apply.¹ See below or ask a sales associate for details.

06 November 2008

Long...but oh so worth the watching...

A dear friend in Australia posted this on her blog today. We met years ago at the Wembley congregation in London when we both lived in the U.K. and have continued our friendship even though both have moved to our homelands and we are thousands of miles apart. She is like a daughter of mine as well as a sister in Christ.

This deals with abortion. And this is sometimes uncomfortable to listen to. But this is reality - in particular HER reality. And it does make you think.

The video is in two parts. Together, you will be watching for approximately 15 minutes. But please see it all. I hope you'll be glad you did.

As I watched this today I am stunned with this young lady, Jianna Gesson. She is slightly older than my eldest, Jennifer. Our Jennifer was longed for, prayed for, welcomed with loving arms. But Gianna was someone that was considered for wont of a better word "disposable". She is an abortion survivor. And not only is she an abortion survivor, she is advocate for the unborn who risk not even BEING born.

And as she says, it is not considered PC to mention God or Christ these days - especially in the government building in Australia where she delivered her speech. I am anti-abortion as well but have never heard it articulated as well as this young lady, who by "all rights" (yes, pun intended) shouldn't even be alive today.

I'm humbled by her courage to speak out. And I agree with her. I personally have been silent too long.

03 November 2008

01 November 2008

It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown...or the few that are left anyway...

We took Jennifer, Luke and Ben and joined the throngs of families who visited a pumpkin patch this past week. Even grandparents totally buy into the hype of seeing cute children frolic through fields of hay and produce with inflatable bouncy pumpkins and strategically placed merchandise for sale. And we were strong - we resisted the urge to spend $24 for a pumpkin that is $3.98 at our local Wal-Mart and opted instead for the 'baby pumpkins' for $1 each - which were immensely cuter than the aforementioned behemoths of extraordinaire expense.

I got a kick out of this little exchange between Luke and Ben. Is it just me, or does it remind you of a Magic 8 Ball? Is Ben messing with Luke's mind?

Luke's seems to be highly dubious of this however. Smart boy.

And of course, when at a pumpkin patch, Miss Manners says you should ALWAYS take a hayride!

We had a blast. And I'm glad that Mike was finally able to join us.