Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye 2009

Here it is the last day of 2009. Wow! Can it be? I hope everyone had a fun December. I finally downloaded some photos so here's a sampling of our December.

Our very first gingerbread house. Not too bad!

My little donkey at his preschool Christmas program.

Getting ready to open a gift on Christmas Eve (hint: PJ's)

After church Christmas Eve

Mini#2 digging into candy Christmas morn.

Mini#1- the first time he was quiet on Christmas morning! Thank goodness Santa brought headphones!

My beautiful Christmas white bouquet from (Trader Joe's!)

Tonight we're off to my friend's house for some homemade Asian tapas and cheer. Should be a fun night. Not too crazy or crowded. Got to appreciate that after a crazy, busy month. Have fun celebrating tonight. Goodbye 2009, hello new decade!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Good Riddance

Good morning! I hope you all survived the Christmas holiday and had a wonderful time with families and friends. I was watching one of the morning shows this morning (ahhhh, nowhere to be so I can leisurely stay in bed late a few mornings!) and it was talking about the 3rd annual GOOD RIDDANCE day in New York City. People could write down on a piece of paper all they wanted to get rid of in 2009 and then simply throw the paper in a shredder in the middle of Times Square. Great idea. It made me think. What would I want to get rid of from the last year? That's a hard one! However, I will admit that PULL-UPS quickly came to mind. And we did get rid of pull-ups early this year. I never have to buy pull-ups again (do adult diapers count? Not for many years I hope!). Seriously though. I would get rid of angry/rude people. I would get rid of half of my closet! I would get rid of the NC State Wolfpack's football season this year (except the win over UNC). Ok, enough. What would you get rid of this year? Let's hear it. Get rid of it!

Friday, December 25, 2009

To you and yours...

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas with your families!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Quick and easy

If you're frazzled like me (Santa has it soooo easy with those elves of his doesn't he?), then you will appreciate this simple post of some fun pics I've found. Of course, there are the obligatory "Paris in December" photos. Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

'Twas the Night Before Christmas- Mom style

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the abode

Only one creature was stirring & she was cleaning the commode.

The children were finally sleeping, all snug in their beds,

while visions of X-Box & Barbie flipped through their heads.

Yes, and dad was snoring in front of the TV,

with a half constructed bicycle propped on his knee.

So only the mom heard the reindeer hooves clatter,

which made her sigh, "Now what is the matter?"

With toilet bowl brush still clutched in her hand,

She descended the stairs, and saw the old man.

He was covered with ashes & soot, which fell with a shrug,

"Oh great," muttered the mom, "Now I have to clean the rug."

"Ho Ho Ho!" cried Santa, I'm glad you're awake."

"your gift was especially difficult to make."

"Thanks, Santa, but all I want is time alone."

"Exactly!" he chuckled, "So, I've made you a clone."

"A clone?" she muttered, "What good is that?"

"Run along, Santa, I've no time for chit chat."

Then out walked the clone - The mother's twin,

Same hair, same eyes, same double chin.

"She'll cook, she'll dust, she'll mop every mess.

You'll relax, take it easy, watch TV and rest.

"Fantastic!" the mom cheered. "My dream has come true!"

"I'll shop, I'll read, I'll sleep a night through!"

From the room above, the youngest did fret.

"Mommy?! Come quickly, I'm scared and I'm wet."

The clone replied, "I'm coming, sweetheart."

"Hey," the mom smiled, "She sure knows her part."

The clone changed the child and hummed her a tune,

as she bundled the small one in a blanket cocoon.

"You're the best Mommy ever. I really love you."

The clone smiled and sighed, "And I love you too."

The mom frowned and said, "Sorry, Santa, no deal.

That's my child's LOVE she is going to steal."

Smiling wisely, Santa said: "To me it is clear,

Only one loving mother is needed here."

The mom kissed her child and tucked her in bed.

"Thank You, Santa, for clearing my head.

Sometimes I forget, it won't be very long,

before they'll be too old for my cradle and song."

The clock on the mantle began to chime.

Santa whispered to the clone, "It works every time."

With the clone by his side, Santa said: "Goodnight.

Merry Christmas, dear Mom, you'll be all right."

Sometimes we need reminding of what life is all about.

Especially at times when the Holiday season shouts,

and all we do is clean, bake, and procure.

You get the picture -- I'm sure.

So stop for a moment and hug that little one so dear,

whether he/she is 2 or 22, or even older this year.

For they are the gift that God gave us from Heaven above,

And what a special gift to be treasured, with endless LOVE!

I hope this post finds you all well, stress-free and happy! I just returned from my friend's father's funeral (3rd friend to lose her father in a month!). She is really struggling with the pain of sadness as so many are this time of year when you've lost loved ones. This is the first Christmas Mr. Pink will be without his mother. All of this made me call my dad on the way home just now to tell him I loved him! Now you do the same (even if they drive you crazy sometimes!). Merry Christmas! Love, Mrs. Pink.

Friday, December 11, 2009

I love this house.

This is the house in one of my favorite movies, The Family Stone. Being in the south, you rarely see snow around Christmas. It gets really cold (like this morning!!) though. Today I would love to be baking away in this house and then relaxing in front of a fire by a Christmas tree watching it snow! Wouldn't you?

It's been a fun week. A quick recap. Last Friday night we went to the "Walk Through Bethlehem" at mini#2's preschool (it's a church). Real sheep and suspended angels. We love doing this as a family. Saturday we dressed up (Fun for a SAHM!)and went to a fun neighborhood Christmas party at a local restaurant. We went to Charlotte and ventured over to nearby McAdenville to see the lights one night. It's a tiny town where all the houses and the quaint downtown area decorates with Christmas lights. They've been doing this for 54 years. I especially enjoyed all the lights in the small lake. We went to visit Santa while in Charlotte. He was a "good" Santa, too. Authentic looking. We returned home late Wednesday. We've made sugar cookies and wrapped presents. Today I'm getting ready for our friends to come over for dinner. Tomorrow mini#1 and Mr. Pink will walk in our local Christmas parade with the cub scouts. Busy, busy, busy. I hope all of you are enjoying this busy, yet fun time of the year! Have a great weekend!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Short Family Visit

I'm in Charlotte with the family visiting my parents and my brother shown above with our VP- Joe Biden (taken overseas last fall). My brother has been in DC taking a certification class for 8 weeks and will be returning overseas at the end of the week where he works in one of the US Embassies. Don't ask me exactly what he does. I just know he has a lot of responsibility and a long title. Who would have thought he'd turn out so responsible as an adult? I remember my mom being so frustrated about him forgetting things at school/home when we were growing up. Ha! He has another year and a half on this assignment before he moves onto another country. When/if he moves to Paris, I'm moving in with him. Anyway, we're having an early Christmas with him. My parents will be coming to see us for actual Christmas Eve/Christmas.

In DC last March when I took mini#1 on a weekend trip.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

This made me smile.

Pulling this handmade ornament out of the Christmas decorations last week made me smile. Mini#2's preschool class made these last year. A full length photo glued onto a tongue depressor with feather wings. I loved it then and I love it now. The angel wings remind me that, yes, even he has some angelic moments and I thank God for giving him (and mini#1!) to me everyday. Even though he had a sense of humor and gave me two BOYS!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Five on Friday

I've seen a few of you post your favorite Christmas cd's so I'd thought I'd post mine. I LOVE Christmas cd's! I add to my collection every year. So here are 5 of them this Friday!!

1- My newest cd- Andrea Bocelli. I own several of his cd's already and his Christmas cd does not disappoint. How gifted this man is!

2- Sarah Mclachlan "Wintersong" - Some oldies and some of her own songs.

3- Michael Buble- My friend gave me this cd last year. I love this crooner.

4- Josh Groban- Again, this guy is gifted as well so I knew when I heard (last year?)he had a Christmas cd I had to have it.

5- Harry Connick Jr.- still a favorite. I believe it was in 2003 when I saw him perform these Christmas songs at Atlanta's historic FOX theater. Fun night. He's such a lovable guy.

I put these on shuffle and really get into the Christmas spirit. So what are your favorites? Do any of mine make your list? Have a great weekend!

EXTRA- I forgot this one!! I love Diana Krall, too. Can't leave this one out of my favorites.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Where are They?

I miss my friends Stacy and Clinton (especially Clinton)on TLC Friday nights! Where the H-E-double hockey sticks are they? I love this show. Are they on another night?? Because I HATE this show....

It bores me to no end. Trying to push too expensive dresses on brides with their surrounding "loved ones" offering to many opinions flustering or angering the bride in most cases. Not fun entertainment. It's uncomfortable for me to watch.

I know TLC has not run out of unsuspecting guests for What Not to Wear. So bring this show back!

Ok, had to get that off my chest. Now back to my busy life. My first Christmas party is this weekend. At a restaurant; not my house! Then Sunday we're off to Charlotte for a few days to visit my parents and my brother before he heads back overseas where he lives. Lots to do before we go!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

We had a visitor over the weekend.

Do you know who this bright green turtle is? It's Franklin of the Franklin books and children's series. Mini#2 is in the turtle class this year at preschool and when it's their turn to be the terrific turtle for the week (supplies ALL the snacks, etc), they get to bring Franklin home for the weekend. Then we get to work on a scrapbook page for the class Franklin scrapbook chronicling Franklin's visit to our home. It was so much fun looking at the already completed pages and mini#2 LOVED this animal and I thought we might have a difficult time returning him to school yesterday, but we didn't.

See how excited he was to bring him home after the school's Thanksgiving "feast" last week?

Here he is introducing Franklin to his Webkinz. He literally introduced each by name to Franklin. "Franklin, this is Gavin the guinea pig. Gavin, this is Franklin the turtle." Thought we'd never get the lights turned out!

Franklin all snug in mini#2's bed.

Franklin having Thanksgiving day dinner with us. Mini#2 said he likes pumpkin pie.

Franklin was fortunate enough Saturday to watch the WOLFPACK win against those "boo" Tarheels as mini#2 calls them. We even had a mini helmet for him to wear.

Then Franklin got to ride on mini#2's scooter. This was such a fun activity for mini#2. He got to share about visit and his scrapbook page in class today. He told me all about it. I'll bet you didn't have a turtle at your table last Thursday!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

In-state Rivalry


GO WOLFPACK!!! Mini#2 and Mr. Pink are just off to the stadium now. This game is always a nail biter no matter what our seasons have been like. We won last year. Not so sure that's going to happen today... We have injuries and have just had a bad season, but maybe our strong DISLIKE for the Tarheels will pull us through today. One can hope.

Update: NC State Wolfpack beat UNC 28-27. Whew! We'll take it!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving funny

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving day with their families!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Imagine my surprise...

Do you know who this is???

What about him here, much younger, on the far right???

Yes, it's Jerry Mathers a.k.a. the Beaver from "Leave it to Beaver". He was on a float in the Raleigh Christmas Parade last Saturday! Imagine my surprise seeing him on a float after I'd seen the umpteenth marching band stroll along playing Christmas music in NC on November 21 (I have a thing about listening to Christmas music before it's December. I think I'm the only one that has this "thing" though). Mr. Pink and I were all giddy with excitement. Apparently he's going to be in a Cinderella-ish production in Raleigh sometime soon. I was too surprised to figure out what the float was for and I'm just too busy to research it for this posting! Anyway, mini#1 (8) was wondering why his parents were freaking out a bit. So I had to explain it to him in his language. "You know. It's like if you were an adult and you brought your kids to a Christmas parade (in November before turkey day!!!) and saw Miley Cyrus (or Jonas Bros or Zack & Cody)all grown up on a float. You'd be excited and tell YOUR kids that you used to watch her (them) on TV when you were younger. She'd look older, but you'd also be older and it would be fun to see someone that reminds you of childhood." He smiled as understanding passed across his face. And to think I sometimes doubt my parenting abilities! Well let's just hope he never sees an episode of "Leave it to Beaver." I don't think June Cleaver ever once lost her cool with the Beaver...or Wally...or Ward. What the heck was her secret? Good writers I guess and cocktails after taping I'm sure!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Yes, I did.

Yes, I was a part of the record-breaking crowds that saw this movie this weekend. I went with 4 thirty-somethings last night and we loved it. Even saw my hairdresser. And see, now everyone is jumping on my Team Jacob bandwagon. I'm always a sucker for the underdog (pun inteneded in this case!). Still I shouldn't be drooling over a 17-yr old, but my, my the boy works out! So, did you see it? What did you think? I liked it better than the first one, but am really looking forward to Eclipse- my favorite book of the 4. And, if you haven't read the books, you just can't get the full effect by seeing the movie can you? Ok, Edward, I still love you, too.

I'm all over the place in this post and real life. Since I'm hosting my father-in-law and his wife for Thanksgiving, I've already been to 2 grocery stores today, just pulled cupcakes out of the oven for mini#2's "feast" tomorrow and I've got to rush out to the gym to squeeze in a workout before I have to pick up mini#2 from preschool at 12:15. Then at 1:15 I have to be at mini#1's school for a writing celebration and fall party. Whew and mini#1 is out of school after Wednesday until Jan. 4!!!! Track out for Christmas break. I'm putting him to work. He gets to help me decorate the house next week. He'll enjoy it.

Ok, I'm off. Have a great day!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Happy Anniversary!

Still ever facinated by all things royal, I learned today on a royal blog I follow that Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip were married on this day in 1947- 62 years ago! She was 21. He was 26. What a life they've had with their four children and eight grandchildren. Cheers to the Royal Family of England today as they celebrate this bit of history.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

What does your Thanksgiving meal say about you?

What Your Thanksgiving Meal Says About You
When it comes to the holidays, you follow and love the big traditions. You look forward to them every year.

You see the holidays as a time to be close to loved ones. It's a good time to reconnect and make memories.

You like the more adult aspects of the holidays - parties, cocktails, and having time off from work.

During the holidays, you are likely to feel energetic. At your worst, you feel bored.

You consider yourself to be a bit of a purist, and you're proud of it.

You tend to spend your holidays sharing and pitching in. You'll do whatever needs to be done.">Blogthings: A Fine Line Between Insight and Stupidity

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Ok, so I posted this last year, too, but it still cracks me up.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Wish I were...

....instead, I am here:

Today I have been running around doing errands, squeezed in my H1N1 shot, struggled through a muscle class, juggled appointments (cancelled my dental appointment tomorrow in order for mini#1 to get his H1N1 vaccination before they run out), ordered some Christmas gifts online and now it's back to cleaning my house. However, my mind is on Paris with shopping, yummy food and wine! I must return soon!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Five on Friday

What a week! Here's a glimpse at mine: leaky window, crazy rain and wind for 2 days, a dryer that is just about to call it quits, a conference with mini#1's teacher (smart kid who is easily distracted or can distract others!) all combined with a bit of PMS. So today, my audience participation day, I ask you a few simple questions.

1- What age did you marry?

2- What age did you have your first child?

3- What was your major in college?

4- What is your favorite food at Thanksgiving?

5- Will you be shopping the Friday after Thanksgiving this year?

My answers:
1- 25; he was 29. (said he wouldn't marry until he was 30! Ha!)
2- 30
3- French Language and Literature (changed from Business Mgmt as a senior because economics was kicking my butt and I was already getting a minor in French.)
4- Dressing (as we say in the south)
5- I did last year. Not sure this year. I've already started on my shopping so, unless I hear about a major deal, I may skip the madness!

Now, see my poll to the right for an extra question. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Risotto Recipe

Remember I said I was going to make an Ina Garten recipe last Friday? Well, I did and it was so yummy that I wanted to share it. Very colorful and a good 'ole comfort food for a chilly night.

Butternut Squash Risotto

1 butternut squash (2 lbs)
2 tbsp olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 cups chicken broth
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
2 oz pancetta, diced
1/2 cup minced shallots (2 large)
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tsp saffron threads
1 cup freshly grated parmesan

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel the butternut squash, remove seeds, and cut it into 3/4 inch cubes. You should have about 6 cups (think I had a little less and it was fine). Place squash on a sheet pan and toss it with the olive oil, 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper. Roast for 25 to 30 mins, tossing once, until very tender. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat the chicken broth/stock in a small covered saucepan. Leave it on low heat to simmer.

In a heavy-bottomed pot or dutch oven, melt the butter and saute the pancetta and shallots on med-low heat for 10 mins (I did this while squash was roasting), until the shallots are translucent, but not browned. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains with butter. Add the wine and cook for 2 minutes. Add 2 full ladles of broth
to the rice plus the saffron, 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper. Stir, and simmer until the stock is absorbed, 5 to 10 mins. Continue to add the broth, 2 ladles at a time, stirring every few minutes (or more often!). Each time, cook until the mixture seems a little dry, then add more broth. Continue until the rice is cooked through, but still al dente, about 30 mins total. (I cooked 35-38 mins) Off the heat, add the roasted squash cubes nad the Parmesan cheese. Mix well and serve. Serves: 4 to 6.
Enjoy. We sure did!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Where did you get that outfit?

I recently ordered some items from Mini Boden because mini#1 found the tiny catalog I received in the mail and gave me his wish list! This British company has the cutest clothes for kids. I've never ordered anything for me, but the kids' clothes are really cute. He loves his new coat. It's great quality, too.

And for those of you with little girls, look at this precious coat and sweater. It's a good thing I don't have girls...I wouldn't be able to buy anything for me because I know I would go overboard with frilly, girly things. Ha!

I got to use a 15% coupon and got free shipping for my first time order. Then they emailed me another coupon! Gotta love the recession and all of these coupons!