New Year's Eve 2010

New Year's Eve was a completely different experience for us this year.  For the last 4 years, we've spent NYE racing around like crazy people, putting on a student ministry event for 400 teenagers.  Wild, crazy and fun, but also stressful, exhausting, and a major interruption in our own Christmas break.  This year, Trav and the staff decided to try something new, much smaller and generally easier to pull off (I think??).  They hosted a 12 hour drop in worship/prayer thing at our Church for all ages.  It was still a bummer for the kids and I because Travis had to leave Iowa early to go back and work, but I'm so thankful that it was much easier on him this year.  I think he actually got to enjoy the whole break without having to worry about a huge event to come back to!  And he enjoyed ringing in the new year with people from our Church of all ages, worshipping, reflecting and praying for 2011.  Still, we missed him :)  
 I did find some solidarity with my sister Jennie and her friend Cady, who were also without their husbands on NYE.  We are wives of a restaurant manager, a youth pastor and a police officer.  All 3 of them working hard while we enjoyed ourselves!  Ha Ha!
 Of course the first thing we thought of in our family, was the food :) What can I tell ya, we are hearty midwesterners and we like to eat!  
 We even roped Jesse in, as the only husband left, to help us!
 My Mom had a migraine, so my sisters and I happily took over for her.  I told my Dad, "This was a serious advantage to having 3 daughters!"  To which he replied, "Yes, but only one of many advantages" :) 
 Meet my Dad. 
His name is Steve and he is addicted to Sparkling Grape Juice :)  
I'm pretty sure he bought at least a dozen bottles for us to drink over the holidays.  
Every time we turned around, he was ready to fill our glasses again!
It's a really good thing we aren't actual alcohol drinkers or we might have a really big problem :) 
 Cady and Carter
 One of our new additions to our appetizer buffet, these little smokies wrapped in bacon...Heaven in a bowl.  I will refrain from telling you just how many I consumed over the course of the evening, but I will share the blog where I snatched the recipe very soon!  
 Yes, there was also a fungus among us :) 
 Some corn chowder and raw veggies...
 Crusty bread with dipping oil and my Mom 's famous grape salad.  
And those were just the appetizers :) 
 Grandpa had Carter grinning from ear to ear while they watched football together
 And as I snapped this picture, I realized just how much Carter's "look" had changed over the course of our visit!  Can you see it??  He is losing some of the roundness in his face and really starting to look so much like Travis.  His features are becoming a little more pronounced.  
Since Daddy was away, Uncle Jesse came to the rescue!  
He played with Ava in her little tent for a long time :) 
 Deb, with my "not so little" Carter :) 
Needless to say, he wasn't looking like a good candidate for staying up til midnight with me!
 The boys :) 
 Happy new year from Jesse and Stacie!
And Jennie and Dave!  
(Dave made it just before midnight after the restaurant closed)
And finally, Happy New Year from 3/4 of the Armstrongs :) 
If I couldn't ring in the new year with my man, I was grateful to still be ringing it in with my babies.  
Ava was happily sleeping in her bed while Carter was dozing in my arms...Not a bad way to greet another year!  


Erin said...

yummy look at all that food. Glad you enjoyed your New Years Eve this year and glad Travis got to do something a little more low key!!

Darla said...

Cute pictures, Stephanie! Your comment (and picture) about your Dad made me laugh out loud...addicted to sparkling grape juice. :)

Marianne Elkins said...

I feel your pain with missing your husband! Mine has a mission trip where he takes a group of middle school students on a mission trip to Miami over New Years weekend. This year he did limit it to 105 so it took some of the stress off. I get to stay home with my 2 girls and hang out with my parents. Much more relaxing on my end, that's for sure!

I've enjoyed reading your blog!