43 and a little contest!

Well, I've lived to the ripe old age of 43 (ha!) and been treated for two cancers (so far)- yuck!  My doctors tell me that, of course, I'm not immune to getting others as I age which is rather a bummer.  This one really makes me thank my lucky stars for each and every day I have to spend with my friends and loved ones.  When you face your mortality it really makes you appreciate the little things.

For one, I have the adorable little Santa that Chloe made for my birthday. She made him at one of the camps she went to this summer.  It's unglazed and was fired right in a fire pit.  Most of the other items that were fired broke during or after, but this Santa survived and is so solid that I'm sure he'll be treasured for many, many years.  Chloe knows how much I love Christmas, Santas and all things handmade! 

I love how the colors of the books on the table looked so nice with the little Christmas table topper.  Anyone recognize the Sanna book above?  It's by one of my readers and favorite bloggers, Roxie at Sanna's Bag.  This is the first Sanna book which we just received and haven't started yet.  Roxie just told us the second one is available now as well.  Sanna's story involves a lot of knitting, so be sure to check it out!

My other present is a new Bernina 440!  There are still many things I need to learn to do with it, but I've been using it for lots of things.  I have yet to use the Stitch Regulator, but it's the main reason for buying this machine.  My dear husband finally talked me into getting it for my birthday.  I stalled when he suggested it for Mother's Day, but now I'm glad he persisted.  Isn't he great!

Now, onto the contest.  My favorite holiday has always been Christmas.  The lights, the songs, the chill and possibility of snow (I grew up in Massachusetts) and of course the presents. Though as I've gotten older it's much more about the giving than the receiving.  It's been important enough that both my kids have middle names that reflect a love of Christmas.  Now, I'll tell you right now that they are pretty normal American names, not something like Jingle Bells!

So, here's the contest.  Guess Chloe and Ryan's middle names by commenting on this post.  I'll award prizes to two lucky winners.  One will be for a randomly selected person among those (if any) who guess both names correctly.  The other will be randomly selected from all the guesses.  If no one guesses correctly at all, then I'll pick two from all the guesses.  Now, anyone who knows us closely is exempt from the guessing, so don't even try!  The prizes will be whatever I come up with in the next few weeks.  I'm thinking something handmade by me and perhaps some other little goodies, but you can guarantee that they will have a Christmas theme!  Deadline for entry is Sunday, December 2nd at midnight.  Good luck and Merry Christmas!

PS:  The last three photos are from the Sisters Christmas Parade on Saturday.  It's a very small home town parade- my favorite kind!  There are always llamas and alpacas.  Scrabble got a lot of comments in his little striped shirt!