Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Mario and I bought this movie and has become one of our favorite movies. It will definitely be a movie that will touch your heart and if you’re married will remind you of the importance of the vows you took on your wedding day with your spouse before God. The story along with the acting is just beautiful. Please rent or buy it and watch it with your spouse, I promise you will not be disappointed! :) Amy

Monday, January 12, 2009

The end of a great day!

Ethan found the pile Mario had made from Friday's snow when he snow shoveled made a perfect spot for sledding down! He had so much fun so I feel better about letting them enjoy a little of the cold. We never laughed so hard! It was the best 10 minutes we have had in a long time. Unfortunately over the next few days it is going to be COLD, deathly cold so this won't get to happen again for awhile. For the low one night the actual temp will be -17! But with the wind chill it will feel more like -30 we were told by our local news! We were watching a show on Antarctica yesterday and I found it humorous that in the summer it warms up to around -4 degrees there. We now know what that feels like! Ethan asked me if we could get a pet penguin after watching them on the show! I started to explain that it would be too warm here in Iowa for a penguin but decided to just go with the basic, "We are already have 2 cats, a fish, and a dog," answer!!! Ah! Have a wonderful week. We are playing a lot of board games. ~Amy

More Snow, A lot More!

Maybe our family is going a little stir crazy, but I saw nothing wrong with Emma mowing the snow! Ok, the kids had been begging me all morning if they could PLEASE go outside! So after about 2 hours of saying NO, I had a change of heart! The temp was holding at a whopping 22 degrees with a wind chill of 10 degrees! I heard every motherly instinct in my head saying "Are you out of your mind these kids are going to get sick!" But it took me longer to bundle them up than we were actually outside. And they really did enjoy their 10 minutes of freedom! I think Ethan more than Emma.

My new dishes for $10!!!

We like to stop by Half Priced Books to let the kids look at the books. Since I knew Mario would check out their record collection Emma and I decided to take a peak at Pier One and I'm glad we did. I found this collection of dishes on clearance for cheaper than if I bought them at a garage sale! I bought all my local Pier One had left, which was 9 plates, 6 mugs, 5 salad plates and 2 bowls. They were all around .58 cents a piece. And I only paid just under ten dollars for the entire set!!! Pier One still lists the set on their web site so you should definitely check out their sales!

Snow again!

This is in our neighborhood on Sat., isn't it just beautiful! I took this picture as we were leaving our street to go do a little grocery shopping before the Arctic temps hit us. This is where we enjoy walking, it is so relaxing with all the big old trees. As you can tell we got a lot of snow Friday night. Poor Mario spent 2 hours snow shoveling Sat morning. He said he used stomach muscles he didn't know he had! But it sure is beautiful with the sun shining! I just had to share some pictures!

Yes I know it's the 2nd week in Jan. and we still have our garland and lights out. But it has just been so snowy in our defense. And we seriously can't get to the extension cords because they are frozen to the ground under snow. :)

The day we packed our Christmas tree and decorations away!

Emma wanted just one last picture in front of our Christmas tree before we said good bye and packed it away until next Christmas. While we pulled down garland, stockings and decor the kids decided to have some fun dressing up. Ethan is Iron Man with some help from Mario on making the costume complete. Yes, that is an old camera lens taped to an old tie around Ethan's neck. Hey we get very creative in our family! And Emma is a very stylish Mommy, isn't she! And then Emma decided she was tired and she was just going to relax for a few but she ended up following asleep! The kids don't take naps anymore so this was somewhat of a rarity! I just had to take a picture to treasure the moment! Sweet dreams, Emma!

Monday, January 5, 2009

The kids doing what they do best, being silly!

I told the kids to keep an eye out for our friends that were coming over for dinner and this is what they decided to do. Pose and be silly. I think our friends were very entertained! Have a good week! :) ~Amy

Some good Daddy fun!

Yes, Emma has moose ears on her head. My uncle always gets the kids something fun for Christmas. :)

Emma opening Christmas presents.

This year was a lot of fun because this was our first Christmas that the kids didn't try to open presents early. So I was able to have everything wrapped and ready. My favorite part of opening presents is watching the kid's face light up with excitement. That to me is worth it all. The hectic shopping for specfic toys, wrapping, and cleaning up all the left over toy packages and wrapping paper! :)

Ethan opening Christmas presents.

Ethan was very excited he got some Transformers for Christmas. We went to Old Navy and Ethan really wanted this sweater. He said he liked it because it had the color Chocolate in it. Yes he calls it Chocolate. He knows that is my favorite color. That's our boy. He also likes to decorate and clean with me. His wife some day should appreciate me!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

It's a sad day...

I received a letter in the mail from Cottage Living today stating due to today's economy the company will no longer publish it. And the website will be shut down soon. I have had my subscription since it launched in 2004. We really enjoyed all the landscaping ideas and advice from the articles. I will truly miss getting my magazine each month and sharing with Mario. Here is the article I found on line.

"November 18, 2008

To: Time Inc. Employees From: Sylvia Auton Re: Cottage Living Magazine

I regret to inform you that we will no longer be producing Cottage Living magazine. The November/December 2008 issue, on newsstands now, will be the magazine’s last. will also shutdown. However, the company will keep the brand alive in one of its other leading shelter titles and these plans will be finalized over the next few weeks.
Since its inception, Cottage Living attracted significant advertiser support and fostered a loyal following among readers. However, the economic downturn has particularly affected the shelter market and while the brand was genuinely loved by readers and advertisers alike, the economy inhibited its ability to grow and therefore, sadly, we had to make the decision to close it.
Cottage Living launched with a unique editorial mission. Its readership celebrated community and character over conformity, personality rather than perfection, and informality instead of pretension. The brand’s tagline: ‘life just right,’ showed how one could ‘live large,’ even luxuriously, in a lighter footprint.

Launched in September 2004 with a circulation of 500,000, the brand quickly grew to 650,000 in January/February 2005. One year later, Cottage Living increased its rate base to 900,000, and then to one million in January/February 2007. Cottage Living also produced many one-time special-interest publications including Cottage Christmas and Cottage Makeovers.
Cottage Living also received many industry accolades including AdWeek’s ‘2005 Startup of the Year’ and Advertising Age’s ‘2005 Launch Worth Watching.’ It was also named to AdWeek’s ‘Hot List’ 10 Under 50 list for two consecutive years: 2006 and 2007.
I want to thank the many dedicated and talented Cottage Living staffers. It was developed, edited and published by some of the best talent in the business and we can remain proud of its many achievements.


Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! ~ The Andreani Family