Sunday, November 30, 2008

Tree Tour Part One

David's cousin Hugh and Marie gave us a beautiful set of wedding ornaments last year when we got married. There's a church, a bouquet of roses, a heart with wedding bands, and this adorable bride and groom.

If you didn't already know, David played football in high school. He also played Santa in a Santa outfit that his mom made. There are several Football Santas on our tree.

I made these Cinnamon stars 5 or so years ago and they still smell great. For the dough, just mix a cup of Cinnamon with a cup of applesauce. It's a lot of Cinnamon, so I buy the cheapest that I can find - usually at the Dollar General Store. Form the dough into a ball, then roll out to 1/4 inch between two sheets of waxed paper. Cut out with cookie cutters, and use a straw to form a hole for a string. Air dry for a few days until hard. I store them from year to year in a tin.


It's been a busy weekend! David and I (okay, mostly "I") finished decorating the house for Christmas yesterday, then worked on getting him packed for another trip.

Today I went with my parents and Dawn and the boys to Chuck E. Cheese. It was pretty busy, but lots of fun. The boys won a total of 255 tickets - it's amazing what you can do with 255 tickets! Not much. :) They had a great time though and were please with their "prizes."

Gracie has decided that under the tree in my office is her new favorite place to lay.

We got a little snow today, but most of it melted as it hit the ground. It was a good day to stay inside. I've wrapped gifts and finished a few more ornaments. I'm also watching Christmas Vacation for the 3rd time today. Before you think I was just a lump all day, I really just had it on in the background while I did other stuff. Wouldn't be the holiday season if the stores were any less hooter - hotter - than they are!

More Favorites

A few more of my favorite things...

From left to right:
Longaberger basket recipe box - contains several favorites such as the chocolate cake
Boston Cooking School Cookbook by Fannie Farmer, copyright 1945 (Flea market find)
American Woman Cookbook, copyright 1942 (Another flea market find)
Betty Crocker's Picture Cookbook - 1956 - This belonged to David's mom and must have been well-loved as the front and back covers are both coming off
Cambell's Soup Recipes - 1972 - Also David's mom's
Old blue Mason jar - I'm not sure why, but I love old jars

I Call This Picture "Take Me With You"

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Stockings Were Hung By the Chimney With Care

And the lights were hung, and the trees - all 4 - were decorated, and the mantle was greened-up, and the candles were lit, and...

I started decorating for Christmas yesterday and finished this afternoon. Wrestling all the now-empty boxes back in to the closet was the final step! I'll have a few pictures once Blogger decides to play nice and show me the pictures in my edit window rather than the html code. I'm also planning to give you a Tree Tour. A few ornaments at a time, we'll work our way around and through our Christmas tree - exciting, huh?!

Much to Be Thankful For

Blogger isn't cooperating, or I would write a little between each picture. We had a great Thanksgiving and hope you did too! My aunt and uncle hosted us. We enjoyed way too much of a delicious lunch, then spent a little time four-wheeling in the woods. The weather was glorious - the sky was perfectly blue and we couldn't have asked for a better temperature at the end of November. We especially enjoyed having a new member of the family at Thanksgiving this year - my cousin's new baby Ryan. It was a great Thanksgiving!

Peter Petrie's Egg Separator

Is this the funniest thing? My Aunt Connie gave it to us. It's for separating eggs into the whites and yolks. When my cousin was little, my mom gave him a tool set with a real wood saw. When I was 6 or so, my aunt gave me a Barbie perfume maker. I think maybe Peter Petrie's Egg Separator is part of the ongoing quest between my mom and aunt to give each other's kids gifts that are either messy or gross. ;) If so, it worked - my mom was pretty grossed out! I think it is hilarious.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Freedom from Want, 1943
Norman Rockwell

I Am Stuffing!

You Are The Stuffing

You're complicated and complex, yet all your pieces fit together.

People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Favorite Things, Part Two

Welcome to the 2nd installment of Favorite Things. This is the Favorite Things You Can't Buy in Any Store edition.This list could go on and on - it's much longer than the list of Favorite Things that can be bought. I'm lucky that way.

1. When this guy comes home. It's not just me - I think Gracie is just as glad!

2. Being awake early enough on a Saturday to see the November morning light

3. The smell of the first pumpkin bread of the season

4. Spending time with my oldest friend. There is something to be said about knowing someone for 28 years.
6. Hanging out with any of these yay-whos - and the ones who aren't in the picture

7. That I belong to these people

8. This place -not the building, although I do like it, but the home that's within

9. Lunch with these lovely ladies
Like I said - this list could go on for quite a while. If you think I missed something, you would be right. But, I've been sitting here with this laptop for 2 hours now, and I'm getting hungry. Time to close and eat and get ready for a short work week!

Favorite Things

When I introduced you to my new slippers, I mentioned that if I was Oprah, I'd include them in My Favorite Things show. My bloggy friend Keetha suggested a Favorite Things post, so I've been thinking. Every now and then I'll come across something I use and think "Oh! That should be on My Favorite Things list." So, here 'tis. Free advertising for a few companies...The Holiday Edition of Erin's Favorite Things.

The aforementioned L.L. Bean Wicked Good Slippers - This is what I used to make a book of the first year of blogging and a book of our wedding pictures. It was easy, and I love the final product. A book of the 2nd year of Road to Wedded Bliss is coming soon!

Cryin' Over Cayenne seasoning - makes a great dip and is the best taco seasoning I've had.

The Green Works product line from Clorox.

Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm

Jewelry Design by Denise - Christina and I met Denise at the Farmer's Market. Denise designed and made the jewelry for the big day to my very picky specifications. You can't beat her reasonable prices.

For dry winter hands - Burt's Bees Beeswax Hand Creme

Beanpod Candles

Basis Face Wash - I haven't found any for a while, but stock up when I do find it

Life is Good t-shirts - I think I have enough to wear a different one every day for a couple of weeks.

Thanks Grammie!

Dear Grammie,

You are the best! Thank you for the Vanilla Woofers! You should see me hustle up the stairs for one of them. Thank you!


Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and CAKE!

We celebrated Todd's birthday at the Annual Viewing of Planes, Trains, and Automobiles with a delicious chocolate cake made by Krista. Somehow, it didn't make it in the picture though.David made some really tasty chili - the recipe is over on the Fremont Kitchen blog. It was just the right amount of spicy goodness.
Tuley was a great host - by laying in the kitchen in everyone's way. :) That's me on the left - I got new jeans!

Todd had no trouble blowing out all 40 candles, despite his advanced age. The video isn't all that funny, until the end when everyone says "oooooh!" It sounds like we're really surprised at his abilities. :) And we were!

Happy Birthday Todd

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Inferno

I did some Christmas shopping this week. Online. It was nice - I shopped a couple of places that offered free shipping and found some good gifts. It was the antithesis of stressful Christmas shopping.

Also this week, I received a coupon for a large department store by e-mail. There happened to be something on my Christmas list at that large department store, so today I ventured out to Dante's 4th Circle of Hell - the mall. On a Saturday. Those to whom I mentioned my plan either laughed or asked if I was nuts. My goal was to be very Zen about it. I understand there will be no parking. I understand there will be crowds. I am not in a hurry. I have no schedule to keep. It will be okay. I was right about the parking and the crowds. It was a busy place! I went to the nameless store, carefully made my selection and found the line. As I stood patiently in line, a woman who'd been rifling through a nearby sale bin stepped in front of me. A few minutes later, she asked if I'd been in a line a long time. What? Oh - she has just realized that perhaps she butted. Oh well. Zen, remember? You're fine, I told her. I meant it. Merry Christmas. Soon, it's my turn at the register of fate. The woman behind the counter rings up my items, then scans my coupon. None of your items are eligible for this coupon, says the counter woman. Zen, remember? Oh. Then I don't want them, I told her calmly. And turned and walked away. I've been pondering what went wrong. I did read all of the fine print on the coupon. I don't know why my items were ineligible. Yet, they were. So I left them, all forlorn and confused about their abandonment there on the counter.

Realizing that the Zen was wearing off, I headed back to the car. I was almost safely out of the mall without completely loosing the Zen feeling, when a woman with a sizable and squishy caboose backed into my person while I was walking toward the door. Did she turn around and apologize profusely for almost knocking me out with her derriere? No. Did she even turn around. Not so much.

As I drove away, I had to laugh a little. I will probably go back to Dante's 4th Circle later this week. To buy the items I abandoned a little while ago. **Sigh** Hopefully the caboose won't be there.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Step That Step

The country band Sawyer Brown says it best...

You Gotta Step That Step-

Walk That Walk-

Shake That Thing-

And Honey...

Talk That Talk!

CAUTION... Man In The Kitchen

It’s with three pound sledge and sharply honed machete that I enter the battleground; carefully studying my prey as I stalk the parameter. All senses on full alert the primal response of “kill” or “be killed” takes over my body. The age-old struggle of man verses chili pot dates back to pre Mesopotamian when ancient winds swept across the vas plains of the Serengeti.

Hey, taste this...
Does it need more Cumin?


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Christmas Crafty

While Mr. D has been out on the road, I've been working on a little Christmas craft. Little ornaments with family pictures, to decorate the family tree (clever, huh?) in my no-longer-pink office.

Now you're picturing me wearing my new slippers and hot gluing buttons to felt, aren't you? And wondering if I've slipped a little? I guess posting pictures of my cats doesn't really help that image. I think I'm becoming the crazy cat lady! I may need some sort of intervention.

Wicked Good

Last year, about this time, we received a lovely wedding gift from my cousin in Maine. It was a gift card for L.L. Bean. Each season, we perused the L.L. Bean catalog and website for the "just right" thing. The longer we waited, the bigger the decision became. It had to be perfect. As colder months neared, all things cozy and warm began to climb to the top of the list. We have all wood floors downstairs, and our toes can get pretty frosty. After much thought, we decided. His and Hers "Wicked Good" slippers. This may officially make us old fuddy-duddies, but we were pretty excited when these arrived in the mail. Well, I was especially excited. I think David was mostly amused by me. But...they are wonderful! Soft and warm - and they don't slip on the stairs. If I was Oprah, I would have these on My Favorite Things Show. Just as described in the catalog, they are wicked good!

Two Weeks of Henrietta

Gracie noted that it has been 2 whole weeks since the last post. Every time you've checked the blog, you've found Gracie's sweet furry face staring back. Cute, sure, but not very interesting after two weeks. I had high hopes of a far more entertaining post, but looking at the pictures on my camera, no such luck! So, for the next two weeks, here is Henrietta.
Okay...just kidding. I will think of another post, but I can't promise that it'll keep you on the edge of your seat! We are approaching that wonderful time of year when I try not to leave the house if it's less than 40 degrees outside. And if I don't leave the just get pet pictures. :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

More Fun Than a Bag Full of Kittens


This is a great story by one of my favorite authors - Robert Fulghum: A Vote for Ozzy Davis

Sunday, November 2, 2008

One Pitiful Hungry Dog

Tuley's entire existence revolves around food. He sleeps, he eats. That's about it. So the time change is really having an adverse effect on him. He thinks it is 6:00 and that is time to eat. Instead, it's 5:00. He's drooling and whining and pacing. He's had two hot dog buns to ease the misery, but I don't think he'll make it. Wish him luck.

Slow Visitor

This guy was creeping down our sidewalk this weekend. It's the first turtle I've seen here and I wonder where he came from. Does he live in the ivy? He crawled under it and soon the only sign of him were wiggling leaves.