Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Why The Silence?

No, we have not dropped off the face of the earth...

Or been swallowed up by holidays...

Or become stuck in a snow drift...

We are spending time with our wonderful family, on Stephen's side! After an adventurous beginning... getting kicked off of an overbooked flight, and not being able to fly out until the next morning; getting delayed on our second flight, as the plane was being deiced; and then, probably being one of the final flights into our destination, thanks to weather, we made it!!!! We've been able to have lots of good times with the family: Mom and Dad M., Grandma D., all the siblings and the two cousins! Clara was really getting to love her cousins by the time they had to leave to head home! She had good times sitting at the table with Phinn, drinking their sippy cups and snacking. The last morning she was thrilled to see Gigi come through the door and scurried over there and even gave her a sweet hug... which is NOT normal for Clara!

We have a little more time here with Mom and Dad before heading home. It's been such a blessing to be able to take this trip and catch up with our family!

And yes, LOADS of pictures have been taken and, Lord willing, many will find there way here before long! :-)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Brag Moment

I must beg leave to have a quick brag moment. What or who would I like to brag about, you may ask? Well, my handsome husband, of course!

Last night, at the fabulous suggestion of my man, we met a couple families we are good friends with, at a local bowling alley. We loaded up three lanes and had a grand old time knocking, and attempting to knock, pins down. Well, folks, I tell you, it appears my husband just MAY have missed his calling in life. On our third and final game he racked up a whole load of strikes and spares! And then to top it all off... on the last round he nailed not one, not two, but THREE strikes IN A ROW... also known as a Turkey! His score: a grand total of 157! Made for one exciting finish and some very loud cheering!!!!!!!!

Thank you for indulging me with the brag moment! :-)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

"I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas Eve's Eve, Eve, Eve, Eve, Eve, Eve!"

Last night it actually snowed here!!!!! I was so happy!!! I'd really been wanting snow! I grew up where that almost NEVER happened, then lived in the desert for a short time and now am living in a place where it again, rarely snows. Last winter, the only time it stuck was when we were out of town! So, needless to say, this has been a big treat! We were at the home of some good friends last night, when it started snowing, and we enjoyed driving home and seeing the dusting of snow around us. At one point when we'd stop so Stephen could try to fix the windshield wipers, which appeared to have frozen joints, he and I had a mini snow fight!

Message in the snow!

And what a beautiful morning!

The time came to take Clara out to really experience snow for the first time! Mommy had been lookin' forward to this so much! We got a little girl bundled up!

Our little blue snow bunny.

Already looking a little dubious about all this!

Comin' outside.

We were ok for about 30 seconds, the tragedy struck. Somebody's mittens were too big and didn't fit right and were strange and new to the little girl anyway, so they had already come off. After marching across the flower bed area and trying to step down, someone fell down and our little hands contacted the shockingly cold stuff and that was the end of that! We didn't even want to walk in the "horrid" stuff and became generally quite miserable. We proceeded, as a family, to walk around the house and check out the snowy sights, but it was a short adventure and not at all what Mommy had been hoping it would be. :-( Ahhh well, Mommy has enjoyed having the snow, and perhaps next winter our little girl will have a different perspective. For now she says "I was born in the desert... and that pretty much explains everything."

Not lookin' too happy! But Daddy sure looks good, in Mommy's humble opinion!!! :-)

And this is pretty much Clara's assessment of snow, summed up in one look!

Silverware Lessons

Daddy has now giving the girl a couple silverware lessons! He's a super teacher! He makes her put it in the right slot and get it all the way in! And he patiently works with her and shows her the different sizes. Clara loves it!!! She also loves to clap for herself when she accomplishes something correctly! :-)

Friday, December 18, 2009

Pony Tail!

As is quite obvious, a lot of the hair is still to short for this "style" to be practical, but still cute and fun to try!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


More Christmas Baking!

It's so fun to have Clara getting to the age where she can "help" more!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009



... SO...

... VERY...

... HARD!!!



Monday, December 14, 2009

Menu Monday... And Other Monday Events! :-)

Busy day! Mommy had a dentist appointment at noon. The plan had been for Clara to stay with some friends of ours, but due to a car seat mix-up on our part and Stephen having to drive here from work to bring it to me, I ended up just taking Clara to the dentist. The dentist's wife (they're friends of ours from chapel) volunteered to keep Clara while I was getting my teeth cleaned. That worked out great for a while but then our friend had to get on the phone and Clara ended up getting scared or something and having to come back to Momma. Well, as she was brought in the hygienist was still working on me, so I couldn't really sit up and make eye contact with Clara or anything and I think the poor girl got scared about what was happening to Momma! She started crying away. I remember her little face looking up at that "mean" hygienist as she heartily cried! Well, with a little comforting from Momma, and her blanket being retrieved from the other room, she calmed down and sat on Momma's lap, sucking her thumb and quietly watching the cleaning continue. After our friend got off the phone, she came and got Clara and everything seemed to go fine after that. When I was all done, I found her sitting on our friend's lap drinking apple juice and eating fish crackers!

We went and grabbed some lunch and then did grocery shopping, followed by dropping off videos at the library. It was a full, long outing and a little girl crashed in the car and is now out to the count in her crib.

Alright, now for another Menu Monday:

Chicken breaded with flour and french fried onions (run through the food processor); mashed potatoes and gravy, salad

Greek style veggie burgers (Big thanks to Sarah!)

Buffalo chicken burgers; parmesan potato wedges

Chicken curry, couscous, Nan(?) bread (It's a type of Indian bread you can buy from Trader Joes, and probably plenty of other places too)

Shrimp scampi: Butternut squash

Chicken orzo skillet (yup. this was on last weeks menu. It was one I didn't end up doing, so I gonna try to take a shot at it this week)

Swiss chicken Casserole, Couscous or rice, Some kind of veggie :-)


I did two of the recipes I posted last week and want to try some of the others this week

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ahhhhh... Christmas Baking!

Clara and I decided to try our hand at Panettone yesterday! I liked it, to a degree, but wasn't trilled to death. Got some fun pictures of our darling little disaster!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I've enjoyed reading other people's menus when they put them up on their blog, and thought I'd do one up this week and post it. My menu planning is pretty hit and miss. Sometimes I do it quite often... and sometimes I can go a long time without doing one. Also, I don't know that I've EVER done a whole week according to the plan, but at least it gives me ideas and I can plan my shopping trip accordingly and try to have the stuff I'll need. Some ladies I've seen are great... they plan ALL three meals of the day! I tend to just do suppers and usually just the main dish. This week I also put in side dishes... 'cause I knew I was planning to blog it! :-) Our breakfasts are usually very simple and quick... cereal, toast, etc. Sometimes when I'm menuing, I'll jot down a few ideas for breakfasts, is there something new I want to try or if I just want to remind myself to do something DIFFERENT (I can get stuck in boring ruts!). And lunches are usually something pretty simple or leftovers from the night before or whatever. Anyhow, this week I was in the mood to pick some new stuff to try so there are several things here that are new recipes to us. All the names that are in a slightly different color and are underlined are links to on-line recipes. If you'd like to take a look at them and possibly try them out, just click on the name.

Monday: Black bean soup, leftover breadsticks. I did stick to the plan last night. The soup was ok, but not a real keeper in my book. We've been trying to do vegetarian once a week... this was the planned vegetarian one.

Tuesday: Chicken, Twice Baked Potatoes, Salad

Wednesday: Layered Chicken and black bean casserole, "refried" beans. I'll plan to make the refried beans from dried pintos. After re-hydrating / cooking them I run them through the blender with some butter and salt... So, they're not REALLY refried beans.

Thursday: Shepherd's Pie, Butternut squash

Friday: Chicken Orzo Skillet, salad

Saturday: we're planning to have some friends from Stephen's work over for one of our family traditions: crepe brunch! In the evening we have the company Christmas party!

Sunday: Tacos for lunch and something simple for supper, like frozen pizza.

And of course being the Christmas season, you HAVE to pick out some fun baking to do! So here are a few I want to do in the next week or two!

Cream cheese sugar cookies I did these today, turned out yummy!!! Great recipe! See pictures below of Clara!


Finnish Nissua



Enjoying the sugar cookie beater!

"Hey, don't laugh!!! Your face would look like this too if you were 18 months, were trying to get over a cold, AND were enjoying cleaning up a cookie beater!" You may want to click on these to blow them up, so you can more fully appreciate the yuckiness!!!

"Ok, so even Mommy thought these pictures were pretty funny!"

Sunday, December 6, 2009

This and That

Couple New Words:

Bible: adorably pronounced "Ba-ba"

"Wow!": often said with apropriate emotions of awe, amazement, appreciation or being impressed!

Once in a while while I'm making the bed I'll drape the blanket over a chair and let a little lady have a little tent time!

"Cool people do tricks like this!"

In other news, the Daddy and little girl in the family have been pretty sick the last few days. :-( However, they seem to be on the mend. Momma and the littlest munchkin seem to be doing quite well... it looks like we may have been spared whatever the nastiness was! And speaking of the littlest munchkin, we're now 20 weeks along! Yay! Half way there! The morning sickness seems to be pretty much all gone, another big blessing to give thanks for! And I've been feeling some sweet little movements which I think I may be able to attribute to something other then bubbles!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The LONG weekend: Days 2-4

The first night we stayed at an Inn on a military base. In the morning, Stephen got a hair-cut and showed me around his old stomping grounds! He had been at this base several years ago, going through some training, so there was lots to show. We even got to watch some groups going through the same training... getting yelled at, etc.!

And then it was on to the original purpose of this trip!!! To introduce Clara to her Great-Grandpa and Grandma Y.!!!!! Oh, AND it was also so we could see them too!!!! :-)

Our hosts were my great Uncle Dan and Aunt Jeannie, who treated us royally, putting us up in a comfy hotel, feeding us GREAT food and even taking us out on the town. Our "out on the town" trip included a trip on the metro, a visit to Arlington National Cemetery and a stop for a yummy dinner. Here are a bunch of pictures from Arlington.

Looking toward Lincoln Memorial from ANC.

The grave of JFK and his wife and the "eternal flame".

A sober sight

Grandpa did a ton of his great-granddaughter's stroller pushing

Despite the chill... a little girl finally dropped off for her nap.

Tomb of the Unknown

Changing of the guard ceremony

Custus-Lee Mansion

My stunning model of a husband!!!!

Grandpa Y., Grandma Y. and Stephen

Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument in background.

Aunt Jeannie, Grandma Y.

Later that evening...

Sweet moments with Great-Grandma Beth!

After a very long, wonderful day!

Sunday and Monday morning slipped quickly by with plenty of time to relax and spend time together! After a lunch out with Grandpa and Grandma we headed for home, and a little girl was OUT before very long!

Oh, and isn't that one cutie footie???!!!! I wuv it!!!

What a treat that trip was! Thank You, Lord Jesus, for Your many blessings!