Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Great Christmas Morning…





For Daddy (parents of little ones know who this is)…


All topped off with The Best French Toast Ever recipe from A Soft Place to Land.  I went to two grocery stores to find thick sliced bread and they were both out.  One of the ladies in the bakery suggested using King’s Hawaiian bread, which I’ve never had.  It turned out SOOO yummy.  Thick sliced cinnamon raisin bread would be wonderful too.  Kimba, thanks for sharing your yummy recipe! 


Merry Christmas

I hope you all have a wonderful day with family and friends and make some beautiful memories to treasure forever. 

Here’s our little sweetie right before we left for Grandma and Grandpa’s for Christmas Eve.  Her smile lights up a room!


She LOVES her new Go Go Puppy.  I would say that was the hit of the evening for her.  After we got home we set out cookies and milk for Santa.  Lauren had to do a little taste test to be sure they were good enough.  ;) 



Monday, December 20, 2010

Cookie tins done…

These yummy ginger cookies are packaged up in my cookie tins this year.  If anyone is a fan of ginger and molasses, let me know and I’ll post the recipe.  They melt in your mouth and with a drizzle of icing…yum!

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Sunday, December 19, 2010

The great gingerbread house debacle

It started out innocently enough.  Lauren and I set everything up to assemble our Tarjay gingerbread house kit.   We put the house together just as instructed using the icing bag they give you in the kit and waited 15 minutes for the icing to set just as they tell you.  


While the icing was setting, we opened all the candy and put it in little bowls for easy access.  By the way, this kit says it has LOTS of candy…ah, NOT! 

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Once we started decorating the roof, it started to slowly separate.  That’s okay, I thought, and just added more icing and held it together for awhile.  We finished decorating, with me holding that damn darn roof on the entire time.  As we were sprinkling our coconut “snow” around the house, the roof was slowly slipping until it slide right off!  It was a sad sight.


That’s okay, I grabbed my E6000 industrial strength craft glue, slapped some on and put the roof back in place.  Here’s a look at our pathetic modest little house. 

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I had my back turned as I was cleaning up at the sink and when I turned out here’s what we had…


Yup, pretty much total collapse.  Even the front and back pieces are drooping down.  That’s it…I’ve had it!  It’s now just sitting like this…I needed to walk away from it.  Lauren looked over and said…awwwww.  Maybe once it’s totally dry, I’ll take out the hot glue gun and see if it can be saved at all. 

Next year, I’m gluing the entire base of the house together first and letting it thoroughly dry before we go anywhere near it with icing and candy!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

We're back from our Disneyland trip and we had a blast! The first morning was a little shaky with Joe and me just getting over being sick, but we were both fine by mid-morning that first day.

Lauren's favorite thing was visiting Mickey and Minnie in their houses in Toontown. She LOVED seeing all the characters and it was so much fun watching her give them all big hugs. Our favorite thing was just watching Lauren have so much fun...she was jumping up and down with excitement and loved going on the rides. She even went on the Haunted Mansion, which was totally transformed for Christmas, and the Matterhorn and loved them both. It was very cool to see the Disney parks all decked out for Christmas and the lighting of the castle was beautiful.

I put together a video of our trip, which pretty much sums it all up.'s a little over 7 minutes long. Also, you can watch the video in full screen mode by clicking on the bottom right icon in the viewer (the one that looks like four arrows).

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Upcoming wedding plans…

IMG_3893Our niece, Christa, is getting married this coming March and she asked if Lauren would be the flower girl.  YES, OF COURSE was my response!  Christa, and her sister Jessica, were junior bridesmaids when Joe and I got married, so I think it’s extra cool that Lauren will be part of her wedding party! 

This morning we met up at David’s Bridal  to pick out a dress.  Lauren had only tried on a few before we decided on this simple, little beauty with flowers around the neckline and a balloon hem.  I can’t wait to see her all dressed up in this with her hair done carrying a little satin basket filled with rose petals.  She’s going to be so darn cute!  Christa, it’s going to be such a beautiful wedding…we all can’t wait!  Thank you so much for including Lauren in your party, it means so much to us. 

Flower Girl

Fun stuff…

If you’re fans of Charlie and Lola in your household, pick this adorable DVD up next time you head out to Tarjay.  It was only $5.99 and has a Christmas episode plus six others! 

The Christmas episode is very cute.  It follows them as they open the doors on their Advent calendar and Lola’s letter to Father Christmas gets mixed up with another card and not sent off.  They have a little adventure making sure that her letter is received in time for Christmas.  Lauren just loves it and is watching it right now.  We watched it last night for the first time and she asked for it again first thing this morning. 



There are no fancy Advent calendars around her this year.  I have all the supplies for a Pottery Barn Kids inspired x-mas tree calendar, but it will have to wait for next year.  Instead, this one from Tarjay will have to do…


I’m guessing Lauren likes it anyway, since I found it later propped up on top of her kitchen…


We also picked this up, inspired by M3’s post.  So after I actually get our tree up and the house decorated, then this will be next.  Ughh…I’m so behind this year!


Monday, November 29, 2010

We have a house guest…

for the week and his name is Virgil.  He’s the mascot at Lauren’s pre-school and he’s spending a week at home with each child.  He comes along with a journal to record his antics, including pics. 


As you can see from the hanging thread that used to be his mouth, Virgil has been around the block a few times.  I think we are the six or seventh family to host him.  I hope he survives his time with us…time will tell.  ;)


Here’s a few pics from Thanksgiving at grandma and grandpa’s house (Joe’s parents).  She loves her “Unca Ed” and had a great time with cousin Jessica, who we haven’t seen in over a year.  She just finished up a 10 year stint in the Navy. 

 Mom & Lauren Uncle Ed and Lauren Grandpa and Dad with Lauren Jessica and Lauren

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Counting my blessings

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!  I hope you can slow down a little today and take some time to count the many blessings in your life.  Sometimes in the daily whirlwind of life, we get stuck on some of the ugly stuff.  Today we get to focus on the positive and leave that stuff behind!  

This year we are heading to my in-laws for dinner.  I’m making the Pioneer Women’s Cornbread Dressing with Sausage and Apples.  It’s the recipe she used when she was on Throwdown last week with Bobby Flay.  I can’t wait to see how it turns out.  After dinner, we’re off to my side of the family at my brother’s place. 

This evening it’s time to plan my strategy for Black Friday shopping.  Yes, I’m one of those crazy people who get up before the sun to stand in line at Kohl’s and Target.  It’s a holiday tradition and it wouldn’t seem like the start of the Christmas season without it! 

Speaking of blessings, here’s one of mine.  We made pumpkin bars on Monday night and I brought them into the office this week.  She LOVES to help me bake and I spent many years dreaming of a baking assistant!  ;)

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Not a sight you see everyday…

It was quite a surprise to see Hello Kitty as large as life as we drove back to the office from lunch.  Apparently, it’s Sanrio’s 50th Anniversary and they have teamed up with Target for a little road show.   Of course I parked and headed over to check it out. 


Can you see the Hello Kitty head rests in this truck…


Bet you’d get lots of stares in this Smart Car…


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They had lots of 50th Anniversary goodies for sale, but nothing I had to have.  Lauren could really care less about Hello Kitty at this point, although I think she’s darn cute.