Christmas Trip 2013

Paul and I have been “together” for 9 Christmases, 2005-2013. Every year we do something completely different, depending on where we are living, where we are working, etc…. ๐Ÿ™‚

So….we don’t really have any “traditions” or things we HAVE to do, places we HAVE to be, or people we HAVE to see. So….this year, knowing we were going to be by ourselves on Christmas Day, we decided to go to San Antonio. If we were just going to sit around the house doing nothing, we might as well go on a trip! ๐Ÿ™‚

IMG_20131223_161749Christmas Vacation ready to commence….

So….we went to San Antonio. It was Paul’s idea to go to Holiday in the Park at Fiest*a Texas.

HIP-Logo-600xIt was so fun–I absolutely loved the shows! We didn’t ride ANY RIDES, just watched every show they had…..

"Have Yourself a Looney Tunes Christmas"

“Have Yourself a Looney Tunes Christmas”

It “snowed” at the end of the show (in the seats kind of to the side of us). It almost looked like “soap” as it was landing on people’s heads. I told Paul I was glad we didn’t sit “over there.”

CAM02146They turned the Log Ride into Santa’s castle. We didn’t “see” Santa but we walked through the castle, looking at the decorations, until we hit the line to “see” Santa (we turned around).

in front of Christmas Trees at Santa's castle

in front of Christmas Trees at Santa’s castle

cute little "claymation" Elves

cute little “claymation” Elves

I really loved the Looney Tunes Christmas show, but the next one was REALLY GOOD, as well. “Happy Holidays” show was a lot of singing, dancing, etc. So….so….good!







After that show we went over another theater for the Majesty of Christmas. It was beautiful with real-live animals (sheep, goats, donkeys, camel, etc.) and angels that were flying over the audience….


CAM02191This is a much better picture courtesy of this website.

overtxchristmas1After the Majesty of Christmas, we went over to see the Christmas Tree Lighting. We got there at just the right time….



They had fireworks after the Christmas Tree lighting….CAM02196

We went to Chick-Fil-A on Monday night for dinner (gift card means FREE DINNER)!!


On Tuesday (Christmas Eve) we went to the San Antonio Zoo. (Just FYI it is open 365 days a year, even on Christmas)….

It is a great zoo–we spent almost 3 hours there!! It really is a wonderful zoo to visit, if you’re ever in San Antonio.



They had hippos at this zoo, which I thought was really cool (because I don’t know of very many zoos that do).

They were H-U-G-E!!CAM02205


I don’t know if you can tell, but in the picture below there were monkleys and seals in the same cage. The seals weren’t in water (they were on land), and they lived among the monkeys. At one point the seals were trying to “nip” the monkey’s tails….it was so funny!


After a lazy morning at the hotel we headed home today, Christmas Day. We will travel again on Friday, going to Waco to see my family…..craziness will ensue!

LOT 2013

Two weeks ago I volunteered at Lights of Te*jas with Lillie and Lindsey. You can read about our SUPER COLD night here. Well, last night Paul and I volunteered together. The weather was MUCH MORE pleasant, and, in fact, Paul wore shorts/T-shirt because it was so warm.

We volunteered last year as well (but I looked back and I have absolutely NO PICTURES from LOT last year).

Anyway, we volunteered last night from 5:00-9:30. You’re really supposed to stay until 10:00 when you volunteer, but that had SO MANY volunteers last we decided to check out early. We were home by 9:45 and Paul was asleep on the couch by 10:00!

Here’s the entrance to LOT:

CAM02122Here’s the GRINCH and his lovely face when he found out he had to work in the Marmax and listen to Christmas music for 5 hours (which turned out to only be about 2 1/2 hours between our dinner break, our regular break, and us leaving early)!

CAM02119Here’s the Marmax:


“Selfie” (in terrible lighting because of the recessed lighting above us and all the Christmas tree lights in front of us).

CAM02116Here are some of the decorations outside of the Dining Hall:

CAM02120(Oopps….I’m not sure where my other pictures went)….

Here’s a “selfie” of us under the Trail of Lights, as we were leaving.

IMG_20131221_192717(A little fuzzy, but overall cute).

We were at home, nestled in our beds couches by 10:00. Paul, sleeping and me, watching TV. ๐Ÿ™‚

A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That….

Nothing big or significant has happened over the last month or so, but I have managed to take some pictures. Not very exciting but documented, nonetheless.

Here’s a little “Christmas cheer” in our duplex. Yes, that’s our tree. No, we don’t have a “big” one. No, we don’t want a “big” one. We are both OK with our little one…..

CAM02066On Saturday, December 7th Baylor beat UT and won the Big XII Championship. I wore my shirt to school last week (to show off my BU support).

CAM02068Last week I worked at the Intermediate School for 4 days. The 1st 2 days I was the 4th grade hallway bathroom monitor while they took their Benchmark tests.

CAM02061 On Thursday I was “promoted” and got to work in the office….

CAM02062This past Wednesday we went on our annual Kids’ Christmas hayride/caroling trip! I didn’t get any pictures of the kids ON the hayride but we did stop at the Placke’s house and have cookies/Coke, so I took some of their pictures there…..

Faith and Brae

Faith and Brae





Kaydien, Zoe, Kiersten, and Victoria

Kaydien, Zoe, Kiersten, and Victoria

Brookland and Heath

Brookland and Heath

Luke and Mason

Luke and Mason

Brooklyn, Abraham, and Brooklyn

Brooklyn, Abraham, and Brooklyn

This past Thursday I worked at MOPS (which I due twice a month)…..we made Christmas trees (with sugar cones, green icing, little M&M’s, and sprinkles. Here is Westin…..(I love that he’s licking his lips as I’m taking the picture)….

CAM02090I subbed three days this week (even though it’s the last week of school). Here’s a card from one of my students in the 4th grade.


On Thursday I was a chaperone at the M.S. Christmas dance. (What is my life coming to)!!?

me all ready for my M.S. dance

me all ready for my M.S. dance

chaperoning the dance...

chaperoning the dance…

Madison and Lindsey

Madison and Lindsey

Linsdey, Leighton, and Kiersten

Linsdey, Leighton, and Kiersten

So, that’s our life right now…..Christmas is almost here!

A Weekend in Waco

I have been to Waco three times in the last 4 weeks…..I didn’t really “plan” it, but it’s just how it worked out. I went to Waco this past weekend (even though we were just there for Thanksgiving 10 days before). My mom’s church was having an Advent by Candlelight service (as part of their Women’s Ministry) and she wanted me to go to that, along with my dad and I going shopping, me getting a massage, and having lunch with a friend!

My mom has “Wrapping Central Station” in one of her spare bedrooms. Tape, scissors, wrapping paper, bags, tissue paper, etc are all on the bed. So, naturally, after we went shopping, I helped Dad wrap my mom’s presents.


CAM02044Last year my dad used a cereal box (as a gift box) for one of my mom’s presents.

dscf4476This year he used a cookie dough box…..

CAM02042Silly, silly….

No trip to Waco would be complete without going to a rent house with my dad…..

Here’s evidence I helped the last time I was in Waco….

dscf2290So….this time I helped him fix a shower that was dripping.

CAM02046Really all I did was hold the flashlight and keep my mouth shut. It was advice from my mom, and it seemed to work pretty well.

While driving around Waco I looked over and saw myself driving in front of me! I did a double-take because I seriously thought it was Paul in front of me (but I was driving our car, so it couldn’t have been him)!

CAM02060On Sunday night we went to Advent by Candlelight.

IMG_20131208_205544It was a nice time with my mom and her S.S. class.

And a trip to the “big city” is not complete with a “red cup of deliciousness”


I came home on Monday night, after having lunch with Dawn and getting a massage (thank you, Michelle)! ๐Ÿ™‚

I think I’m home for now….at least until Christmas!

A Night of Ministry

This past Friday night (the 6th) I took 2 of the M.S. girls from our church to “volunteer” at Lights* of Tejas. Every year C*amp Tejas presents LOT and they rely on volunteers to help “work” it….Paul and I helped last year (and are helping again this year), but I thought it might be fun to take some M.S. girls with me (on another night). Friday night when we worked, it was SO COLD! A cold front had come in on Thursday, and the high on Friday was 26 degrees. By Friday night I think it was about 21 degrees. We weren’t sure whether we were going to be working inside or outside, so we dressed for the weather. But, PRAISE JESUS we were inside! ๐Ÿ™‚

serving dinner with Lillie and Lindsay

serving dinner with Lillie and Lindsay

Because of the cold weather/ice warning/freezing temperatures, LOT had a very low attendance. The Friday before they had served about 300 people for dinner. On Friday night we probably served about 10. So….it was a slow night, but fun, nonetheless. After we were done serving (they closed early) we walked around for a bit because Lillie had never been there before.

Lindsay and Lillie

Lindsay and Lillie

Lindsay and me

Lindsay and me

all three of us

all three of us

me and Lillie

me and Lillie

Lillie had never roasted a marshmallow over a campfire before, so I happily obliged. We made s’mores, ate them, and then ran back inside to warm-up (It was SO COLD)!!!





I had a good time, and I think the girls did, too. Paul and I will go back next Friday, the 20th, and volunteer again. ๐Ÿ™‚

(I’m not sure we would ever go ourselves because it’s SO EXPENSIVE and geared more towards families with young kids), but I like to volunteer (and we get 2 free meals and a free night’s stay at camp when we volunteer)!

Turkey Day 2013

Well, another holiday is over….on to Christmas! ๐Ÿ™‚

But, here is documentation that we did, in fact, celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends.

We drove to Waco on Wednesday afternoon and had dinner at Panera Bread* with my parents and the Derrick girls.


Dawn, me, Ally, Lindsey, and Sarah

The Derricks have been a part of my life since 1998….I started babysitting them when Sarah was not even one years old and now she is 16! ๐Ÿ™‚

I love seeing them when I can….

On Thursday my mom hosted the Brister Thanksgiving at her house, so we didn’t really have to GO anywhere, just wake up early and help with the preparations. We had about 12 people at her house, so that was nice…..and, because, I was terrible at picture-taking, I have NO pictures from that day…..

Thursday afternoon, around 4:30, we hopped in the car and drove over to Hamilton. We tried to make there in time to see David, Paul’s brother, which we did. We saw him long enough to say hello and snap one quick picture….

The original Tanner five Donna, Susan, Paul, David, and Mike

The original Tanner five
Donna, Susan, Paul, David, and Mike

Thursday night we just spent hanging out and playing Bubble Talk*……it was so fun!

CAM01969Friday we went to Stephenville and had lunch with “Uncle” Jake and “Aunt” Dorothy (which is really just Jake and Dorothy’s restaurant) but every time we go to Hamilton, we drive over to Stephenville to eat there, so they have lovingly become part of the family…..

Friday afternoon Paul decided he was going to clean out his old room (that he shared with his brother)–it was LONG process which consisted of throwing away stuff that had probably not seen the light of day in 15+ years. And he reminisced as he went through stuff….

I have NO WORDS!!

I have NO WORDS!!

not sure why he had this hat.....

not sure why he had this hat…..

It was H-O-T!

It was H-O-T!

And, why did he have a clown wig?

And, why did he have a clown wig?

Friday night was another night “in” playing Balderdash. I had never played before, but it was fun, too.

CAM01983We left Hamilton on Saturday morning around 10:00 and spent the rest of the day in Cameron, hanging out with Kris, Heidi, and Aubrey. We got home around 4:30, just in time for the 2nd half of the Baylor game.

So, not a bad Thanksgiving…..just enough time away from home (not too short/not too long).

Now we wait until Christmas and do it all over again!