Why I have two refrigerators
Christmas Menu

This week is family mania week. My all-time favorite Christmas movie is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. It’s just so relateable!

“No one’s leaving. Nobody’s walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no! We’re all in this together! This is a full-blown four-alarm holiday emergency here! We’re going to press on, and we’re going to have the hap, hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f*ckin’’ Kaye! And when Santa squeezes his fat white a** down that chimney tonight, he’s going to find the jolliest bunch of a**holes this side of the nut house.”

Continue reading

What New Year’s Resolution?
The Classics: Lasagna and Chili

Who’s idea was it to clean up my language and when exactly do I have to start? So yesterday was Little K’s daycare Christmas Show. Little K’s class sang “I’m a little snowman” to the tune of “I’m a little teapot” and I missed the whole friggin’ thing. E caught it on video and there really wasn’t much to see anyhow, but I can’t tell you how irritating it was to leave early, battle traffic, to walk in to the conclusion of the whole deal. Yep, plenty of expletives – LOUD ones too – were launched in my car last night. Honestly people – the roads weren’t that bad. Why were we driving 30 miles under the speed limit two hours before rush hour? Infuriating. Luckily I watched this a half a dozen times now and I’m a lot calmer.

Little K is the one being held for most of the video by the lovely Miss Cassie. The whole thing just cracks me up. The kids have no idea what’s going on, only about two of them even attempt at doing the hand gestures, and Little K spends the whole song transfixed on the crowd. Exactly what I would expect from a group of one-year-olds, and exactly 325x more adorable than expected.

After the week I’ve had, I’m feeling pretty Grinchy today – though I still have bouts of random Christmas Spirit/dementia thrown in for good measure – so I’m especially looking forward to my weekend of Christmas baking, shopping, and parade watching. I have absolutely no concrete plans written in my planner this weekend and it’s the best thing for me. The past week has been booked, busy, and bothersome (oh, alliteration. You are my friend.). Last weekend we had several house guests, here are the reviews on the recipes served.

Continue reading

I’m a little Snowman
Favorite Christmas Recipes

Happy Christmas, everyone! I love this time of year, especially if there’s snow, and I find myself getting ridiculously giddy at random times throughout the day. I believe the symptoms of being in the Christmas spirit are often confused with early warning signs of dementia. Or vice versa. In conclusion, I either have Christmas spirit or dementia. Lets enjoy it! [*random excited giggling*] Tonight is Little K’s Christmas Concert. (Yeah, I was shocked that one-year-olds have Christmas concerts too.) And he’s singing “I’m a Little Snowman” to the tune of “I’m a Little Teapot.” I’m sure it will be hilarious to watch the teachers try to wrangle the 10 kids on stage. Can’t wait!! I’ll grab a photo of the chaos for ya.

Part of this season is thinking about year-end resolutions. I generally don’t really participate in that tradition – making promises that I often don’t keep or should have vowed to do regardless of the season – but this year I think I’ll partake. I know it’s a little early to make the New Year’s Resolution Declaration, but who the hell cares?

  1. Resolution One:I really do want to write on this blog more often. I use new recipes from cookbooks or blogs nearly everyday, so content isn’t the issue. The issue is the same as it is for 99% of the other negligent bloggers out there: time and interest. As a mom with a full-time job, a kiddo, and a long-arse commute, I don’t have much free time. As a blog still in its infancy, my readership and comment count are both painfully low.Those two items conspire to keep me from blogging. It’s as simple as that. Taking the two minutes to pull photos off my phone/camera or sit down with a computer after we finally put Little K to bed just doesn’t often seem worth it when it feels as though there are a whopping three readers (and two of them share a surname with me.) So, I’m going to make some changes in an attempt to make it easier on myself. Less ratings and less photos. I’m primarily reviewing recipes that come from blogs with photos galore (and stellar ones at that). I don’t need to add my sh*tty smart phone pics to the mix. If there is something interesting or misrepresented (like their finished product looks straight out of a magazine and despite my best efforts mine looks like spam) I’ll show ya, but otherwise lets just skip it, eh? And the rating system was grueling and at the end I don’t know that it really told you whether it was a recipe  worth trying or not. So now, we’ll do an easy overall review (essentially a pass/fail grading system) so you can see whether I say try it or not. Again, if I want to call your attention to something really interesting (like a wonderful recipe with every dish in the house dirty, or a fancy-pants recipe that cost next to nothing) I’ll call up a rating for that area in particular.
  2. Resolution Two: I need a bar of soap to chew. I think this comes from spending too much time yelling at other commuters and listening to angry radio, but I say a lot of expletives. Not necessarily George Carlin’s Seven Dirty words or anything, but enough that I don’t want Little K picking it up. So, much to my chagrin, I’m going to try to class up my vocab. You won’t notice a difference since I generally only use those words on the fly – not in my marginally thought-out written words here.

Continue reading

Let Me Show You Around
Meet our new house

I’ve finally taken the 10 minutes it actually takes to get some pictures of the house, and I’m ready to show you. We’ve been busy on home projects, tough work schedules, a bossy baby, and hosting and visiting family.

In the few weeks since my last update we had happy days and sad days – many more happy than sad. However, we did say goodbye to our dog Beaker. As a dachshund, he was born to have back problems, but Beaks had it especially rough. His prior owner was abusive and lead to some major back damage that meant he couldn’t control his back legs well – and sometimes his bladder. Once we moved into this much bigger house, things only got worse. It was clear it was time to put him to sleep. It was a sad day, but the right decision. Here’s to you, Beaks. We miss you.

Fortunately though, we had plenty to celebrate around here too. My sister-in-law got married and the entire family was in the wedding.

Good looking crew, eh?

Little K was a stinky skunk for Halloween.

IMG_6788And Little K finally started walking!

He’s much more stable after a couple of weeks of practice, but he’s not without a few extra tumbles these days!

So anyhow, we’ve been busy. I’m hoping the hibernating phase of winter starts soon! In the meantime, let me show you around our new place:

IMG_7060 Continue reading

Catching Up
I own an island now

In the last several months I turned 30,

Little K turned one,

my sister Rachel moved to Arkansas,

my sister Michelle started sophomore year of college,

529466_667200106639382_1609189446_n

and E and I bought an island. A kitchen one.

I’ve always wanted a kitchen island, but when we first found this house I just wasn’t sure it was all I hoped for in a kitchen. I don’t love the orange wood cabinets with the golden wood floors with the teeny snippet of slate tiles under the cabinets with the really dark maroon walls. Somehow it just didn’t feel “right” when I was standing in it. I knew that it had the makings of a great kitchen and we were sold on all the other parts of the house. So saying yes to purchasing this home was a no-brainer. Still, now that we’re here and unpacked, I’ve gotten a chance to make this kitchen mine. And guess what? I love it. I still don’t love all the orange-ness (though it’s not quite as extreme as this picture), the slate tile with bisque colored outlets every foot, or the heavy maroon walls. But that’s all the styling of the home and I can work on that – very slowly, no races here! – over the next many years we’re in this house.

I’ve not yet had the time to take any pictures myself, so all of this furniture is from the last owner. We’ll do a tour in photos very soon though!

What I do love is the openness of this room adjoining the eat-in kitchen table, the deck, and the upstairs living room. When we have company over it’s so much easier to entertain without forcing everyone to sit at the kitchen table for hours on end.

I love the amount of cabinet space. Yes, I doubted the ample amount of space that this kitchen has. I know, I’m certifiable. Somehow I thought our last kitchen had more cabinet space, probably because it seemed like it had a larger footprint. Reality though is that this kitchen has more counter space and storage, thanks to that beautiful island and the huge pantry storage with slide out drawers.

And lastly, I love how at-hand everything is in this kitchen. I know a lot of that has to do with my mom and all the fabulous organizing and unpacking she did in my kitchen. But even still, the amount of space means I’m not fighting with ten other dishes when I’m trying to get something out of a cabinet, all of the appliances are well spaced so people aren’t on top of each other if they’re working in the kitchen together, and the appliances themselves are really new with awesome functionality.

I’ve had a moment or two where I miss something about our first home. It was the home E and I lived in before we were even married, where we brought both dogs and Little K home to, where we found sanctuary after long days and tough times. We left some of ourselves in the landscaping and decorating, and it was hard to walk away from that. Even so, the time it took for me to feel home here surprised me. We’ll always look back fondly on our first home, but we’re even more excited to look forward at all that comes with our second home.  

PS: I’ll do my best to post a little more often than once a season around here. My next to do: a walking tour of the house in pictures.

 

Just a quick test

We’re having some trouble with email subscribers getting their emails and comment notifications working. Just testing to see if we found the bug!

(Update: Looks like we did!!)

The Macklemore Thrift Shop Challenge – Got $20 in my Pocket

When John and Sherry at Young House Love (YHL) issued the The Macklemore Thrift Shop Challenge, I knew I had to get in on the action.

If  you’ve haven’t been officially introduced, this is Macklemore and his song “Thrift Shop.”

(The official song, dirty words an’ all, is here if you’re interested.)

After a moment of inspiration listening to this song on their way to go thrifting, YHL came up with the “100% Unofficial Macklemore Thrift Shop Challenge.”

Continue reading