Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Haul Out the Holly

I have always wanted to host a classic Christmas open house. I think of the candles, goodies, hot drinks, coats and scarves piled on a bed, the music, the door opening and closing each time guests come or leave allowing a welcomed burst of outside cold into the warm cozy home, I love it all. Well, this year I got my wish. I had such an enjoyable (and exhausting) time baking and decorating for the party. It was a beautiful night with lots of friends. Come join us next year.

Heat wave

December is so unpredictable. One day it is 30 degrees and you have to bundle up to get the mail. The next it is warm enough to go for a run in shorts. We took advantage of the beautiful warm weather this past week. The girls love to play in the front yard while waiting for Daddy to come home for lunch.

Miller faces

The many faces of Annalee and Shelby. Please forgive the blurry pictures. They never hold still in the bathtub. Note the tramatizing effects of Annalee on her unsuspecting little sister. Shelby is so very dramatic.

Thanks Nanny!

Shane's mother is a fabulous dress maker. She made these beautiful dress for the girls. We get so many comments on them each time they wear them. They have been great for the holidays!

Birthday Fun in November

November 20th is mine and Shelby's birthday's. My mother's is the 22nd. It was fun to have us all in close proximity so be could have a big (well, kind of small) celebration! We had a big lunch with the VA family including my sister and Shane's brother. We had a strawberry-cream cheese cake. Hmmm... I wonder when it was that I started making my own birthday cake. Oh, yeah, when I married a man. My parents got the girls a kitchen set. We got Shelby a baby doll which she loves to love. I made my mom one of those super warm double knotted fleece blankets. I could go to sleep just thinking about it. So many goodies!!! It was a fun time by all. Shelby particularly enjoyed the part where she had emerged her hand in a glob of ice cream and began to scream for no apparent reason. We soon discovered the frostbitten fingers and warmed them with love and kisses. P.S. Annalee continues to sing "Happy Birthday" to herself daily. Everyday she asks when her birthday is. We always answer the same thing..."In the Summer." Poor girl has no clue how long away that is.

Monday, November 20, 2006


The other morning, as I was leaving the house for work, I told Shane he could let Annalee play with my makeup brushes that didn't have any color on them. She had been begging me all morning. Here is proof that sometimes, my husband just doesn't listen to what I am saying.

Fredricksburg with the Family

I am so very thankful to be back in Virginia. My family is only 2 hours away, in my favorite town, Fredricksburg. We visited them a couple of weeks ago and "went out." They treated us to a little Mexican place where Shelby practically drank her beans and cheese. Afterwards, we went to our favorite ice cream place in all the world, Carl's. it is an old 50's joint that is always hoppin'. It has been "the place" to go for Virginian's for years. There is always a long line, even in November. The girls had a ball. Thanks to my parents for a great evening!

Birthday Parties!!!

Annalee attended her first birthday party (that she can remember). She is now obsessed with birthdays. She sings "Happy Birthday" all day, every day. We practiced this song to get ready for her friend Izabele's party and then when the time came to sing, Annalee just stood there, overwhelmed with excitement. I am half-tempted to throw her a 1/2 birthday party just because she is so excited, but no, no, the time will come.


I know, to write about Halloween at the end of November really shows how much of a slacker I have been about my blog, but you gotta start somewhere, right? We really have been so very busy. I started a new substitute part-time job a few weeks back and it takes up all of my free-time, of course. So, I have a few moments here this morning and thought I would begin to update the world on the Miller's. Halloween was super fun this year. I love dressing up and this year we were able to get our small group to have a party. Everyone dressed up, including the parents and we had a big chili dinner. Then we took the kids out trick-or-treating, oh, so fun!!! Annalee loved the night. She ran from house-to-house without letting up. It was a pleasure to watch her get into it. She always gets extra energized when other people are around and the streets were full of excited kids, so you can imagine. We really enjoy our small group and they are great sports. One family took on the Wizard of OZ theme. The baby had a metal funnel on his head! Other families were: coyboys and girls, Disney characters, Toy Story and Aladdin. Annalee was a fairy of some sort, Shelby a ladybug, and Shane and I were "peace and quiet." Great night!!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Fall! Hmmm... my favorite!!!

Fall in Virginia is absolutley perfect. The colors make nothing less than giddy, the tastes are scrumptious in my mouth and the cozy clothes are what my body craves all year. I have lots of fall favorites. Here are a few:
  • The sun shining through the trees on our winding back roads
  • The taste of sweet and creamy Cream of Wheat
  • Or, hot steamy oatmeal made with vanilla and cinnamon
  • Warm sweaters
  • Comfortable sweatpants , or stretchy pants of some sort
  • Chenille socks
  • The sound of leaves crunching under my feet while walking the Blackwater Creek Trail
  • Seeing the girls all dressed up in their hats and gloves
  • Wearing my calf-length black wool coat lined with silk lepoard print material, ohhhhhh...
  • Making all kinds of food with nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice
  • Drinking fall flavored coffee
  • Hot chocolate becomes a staple this season
  • The list could go on and on.....

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Liberty Homecoming was fabulous! My very best college freinds came to town and we had tons of fun together. Alena has a way of making reality come to life. You just can't help but be totally transparent with her. Angela truly cares about any and everything that is happening in your life. Of, course that makes everyone feel special. Stephanie has this permanant smile on her face that makes you feel like you are in the best mood ever, even if you are not. Times spent with these girls are very special and always memorable. We went to the parade on Sat, and of course had a HUGE tailgate party. The game was fun, although we lost. Then we spent the afternoon touring the "new" campus. The rest of the night we spent chatting, which is what we do best. Sunday we wne to the HUGE Thomas Road Baptist Church. They were amazed, of course as we all are. Then we said our goodbyes. Until next time, I love you ladies!!! Click here for more pics.

Having fun

Annalee and Shelby have so much fun each day. As Shelby gets older, I can see them interacting more and more. Annalee dresses Shelby up and reads books to her. Oh, but she gets upset when Shelby wants to touch everything she is working on. Annalee is such a perfectionist. She lines up her crayons before playing with them, she has to have her books in order before moving on the the next thing, she spends nearly all day arranging things. This makes for a very neat child, but a very SLOW moving one. Shelby just watches it all happen. Shleby is our little monkey. If left alone for any amount of time she will climb on the table, climb upstairs, or stand on chairs that can fall over backward any second. As soon as she catches your attention she claps for herself! I look forward to the days when they can entertain each other for hours while I whip up gourmet dinners in the kitchen. Ha, yeah right!!!I am not that naive.

Friday, October 13, 2006


Grandma's make every day more fun. My mother has been with us for this past week. She cooks great meals and cares for the girls when we are on the run. She is very flexible and always willing to do what she can. I am so grateful for her. She is the absolute, hands-down, best cook, EVER! Shane loves it when she comes because we eat so well. Yesterday she made a bunch of soups and stews for me to freeze and eat for the next couple of moths. Last night we had carrot soup, naturally sweet and creamy, it was delicious!!!!!!! Annalee likes to help her cook and Grandmommy always takes the time to teach her something in the kitchen. Now I must say the the same things can be said about Shane's mom. She loves the girls so very much and we miss seeing her. Nannie gave Annalee a bunch of books a while back and in the front of one of them she wrote, "Always remember, God is with you and you are the joy of Nannie's heart." Everytime Annalee reads any book outloud, she repeats that inscription. It is so sweet. Nannie is a big help when she is around, too. I am so blessed that my children have such great grandmas!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

A day in the life of a Podany

Our friend's, the Podany's live in Lincoln, NE. They are a crazy bunch, to say the least. I enjoy observing the dynamics of different families and how they operate. We have shared many experiences with them over the past two years. When I try to think of a word that describes them, I cannot help but think "family." At first, that may sound a little uncreative, even boring. But, it is perfect for them. Not that they are uncreative or boring, oh no! They just define that word better than anyone I know. They enjoy each other. We are not the only one's who think Heath is an amazingly patient, caring, hardworking, gentle loving husband and father; Kim a beautiful, full of life, talented, fun, creativley amazing mother and wife; Blake a too-cool-for-school 5 year old; and Camyrn a tough, darling of a girl. We like them lots. I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy friends like these.

We should start charging

While in Lincoln, Shane was a college pastor. Well, as it turns out, this little college group has exploded into a breeding ground for newlyweds. We ran about 20-40 students on a regular basis. Of those 20-40, we had a core group of about 15. Let me just tell you from the time we started the group until next spring, Annalee will have been a flower girl twice, Shane will have officiated three times and been a best man once and we will have attended a total of 6 weddings, all from this core group! And, there are still who are "just dating". It has been both a pleasure and an honor to see this all unfold. Kate a Troy were married this past weekend. They are super cute together. Kate could not keep still during the ceremony, she was so excited. God often blesses me with these little glimpses of His heart.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Around the country in 5 days

We left last Tuesday for a little trip. Leaving the girls with my very accomodating mom, we headed to Atlanta for the Catalyst Confrence. I always tease by calling it the metrosexual confrence because it seems like a big fashion show for people in the ministry. But, none-the-less, there are great speakers, awesome worship and super networking ops. We were able to stay with our freinds Bryan and Amber Davidson. We hung out with many freinds while at the conference. I even got a good talk/walk in with a few girlfreinds. God is so real to me when I can see Him working in the lives of those around me. We also spent an evening with my cousin and his family. I am so excited to be closer to them! After our little stint in Atlanta we jumped on a plane to Lincoln, NE. Shane was officiating a wedding for our friend's Troy and Kate. We stayed with the Kramer's in their camping trailer. It was super nice. Big soft bed, our own space, heated... it was perfect. Of course we were able to fit in time with lots of other friends, as well. Never enough time to fit them all in. God has been so good to us. I enjoyed my days with my very good freind, Kim. We laughed, talked, hugged, shopped, ate and just lived life together for a few days. That is what I love about freinds. You can pick up right where you left off. We flew into Atlanta Sunday night and then drove through the night to get to Lynchburg Monday morning. I crawled in bed with Annalee and held her until sunrise. It was a great trip.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Mom Time

God has blessed me with two ladies whom I have become friends with her in Lynchburg. It makes everyday better when you can share the ups and downs of motherhood with friends. They are both first-time moms with little babies. We get together on Wednesdays for lunch and coffee. Time always flys and before you know it, it is 5 pm. We often just sit on the couches and chat. Their babies eat and sleep the entire time while I try to keep my little ones from destroying their houses or their children. Everyone should have a fun mom time.


I love to eat out! It is probably my favorite thing to do. Especially with my husband, although I am always up for a fun group of friends. My friends from college used to eat out lots. We would drive all the ways to Roanoke or Charlottesville just for a good time with food. But, it is not the food I love. In fact, I really like my own cooking; it is the atmosphere. I would never waste my money or time with take-out. It defetes the purpose for me. I think I am this way with dessert, as well. I don't really like to eat it by myself. Eating in general is an entire experience for me. Shane always eats half his meal before he gets to the table. I think that is such a waste of calories. I would rather sit down, enjoy the time. He is just a hungry guy! Although we don't get to do it too often, it is still my first choice for fun. And, if I can't afford the meal, I often settle for a great latte at a very atmospheric coffee shop. So, come join me sometime for a night out. I know all the great places. Here is a picture of our latest dining experience. My mom treated us to Isablla's, my sister's personal favorite.