goodbye 2010

New Year's Eve Ball, 1978. Photo credit: The New York Times.

Honestly, I’ve never enjoyed New Year’s Eve. I don’t know what it is about the day — whether it’s the slightly depressing fact that another year has come and gone, the pressure to go out and do something absurdly fun, or something I can’t put my finger on — but I get a little grumpy. It’s just the way it is. However… it is an excuse to pop open a bottle of champagne, so I do enjoy that aspect of the evening 😉

2010 was not the easiest year, but we made it through. Here’s hoping 2011 will be great! I hope it will be filled with…

… more reading
… more writing
… more crochet
… more sleep
… more veggies
… more opportunities
… more adventures
… more love & laughter & all-around happiness.

However you celebrate (whether it’s with a giant dish of guacamole and a movie like me or something slightly more thrilling), may the new year bring you nothing but good things.

it snowed

DSC_0164Did you hear about the snowstorm on the East Coast? Heh! Yes, it did indeed snow and blow last night. It didn’t look like much (honestly), but all told we probably got around 18 inches. The panic everyone seemed to have was a little silly. I mean, it’s winter in the Northeast. Snow happens 😉

At any rate, shockingly we did not lose power and it’s been business as usual here. The boys played outside for quite a while, running around and building a snowman. There was an attempt at sledding, but the snow was too high for it. Now they’re warming up in the den. I’m sure they’ll be back out this afternoon, though.

As for me? Well, I’ll take the comfort of my fuzzy socks and my wood stove. It’s a great day to lounge around in sweatpants (though I used to have a pair of medical scrubs that were really comfy, too). I’m catching up on tons of laundry and once that’s done I’m hoping to organize all of my yarn, knitting, and crochet supplies in the rolling tote that I got for Christmas. (I think it was Drew’s way of politely asking me to stop leaving my hooks and projects all over the house, hee hee).

I’m eager to start getting the house back into order of the chaos of the weekend. I’m excited for January and the new year. It’s such a great time to start fresh and organize! What are your plans for New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day?

down to the wire

Oh boy, who would have thought that being down for the count for one day could set me back so far? I was so ill on Tuesday that I got absolutely nothing done. In fact, I took two naps. If you know me at all you know this: I do not nap. I think it was some kind of 12-hour bug because yesterday I was back to my old self. Unfortunately I just can’t make up the lost time.

With this being the case, I’ve decided to cut out a few of the things I was planning to do for Christmas Day — like make a floral centerpiece. I could certainly do a search for a local florist. Something like “flower delivery Mobile, AL” (assuming I was in Alabama). But I think I’ll just use my poinsettia as a centerpiece. You can’t do it all.

I’ve also tweaked my menu (yes, again). So lunch will be:

Spinach & artichoke dip with sweet potato chips
Cheese plate
Shrimp cocktail

Hickory-smoked spiral ham
Meatballs in tomato sauce
Penne a la vodka
Caesar salad
Crescent rolls

My brother-in-law and his girlfriend are going to bring dessert. For Christmas morning, I’ll make some cinnamon rolls and if I’m motivated tomorrow I’ll prep an egg strata since they will be spending the night on Christmas Eve. If not, no big deal.

Hopefully you are a lot more organized than I am!

one week!

Goodness — a week from today it will be Christmas Eve! I need to do my grocery shopping for Christmas Day. I am super excited! There are some fun surprises this year. Nothing like Samsung LCD televisions or anything quite that extravagant, but some good stuff nonetheless. I have a BIG one for Drew. I took a chance on a purchase, and hopefully he’ll like it.

Since my MIL will be cooking beef tenderloin for Christmas Eve dinner, I am resorting to my old standard: the spiral ham. Hopefully I can find a small one. I don’t particularly like spiral ham, but I do like ham salad and pea soup, so I have plans for the leftovers at least. I’ll also be serving spinach and Gruyere strata, meatballs, marinated shrimp cocktail, rolls, fruit salad, and other odds and ends. I just arrange a buffet and people can eat what they want, when they want. I like a low-fi, casual, relaxing kind of Christmas Day.

Now I just need to finish wrapping everything!

oh christmas tree, oh christmas tree

… wherever are your ornaments?


Well, she might not be as bad as Jake was (he broke the antennas of an adorable snail ornament when he was Laura’s age), but she is without a doubt a huge pain when it comes to the tree. She loves taking the ornaments off and bringing them to me, whatever room I happen to be in. We have a whole bare spot that she’s already worked through. Our painstakingly decorated tree now has the ornaments just tossed toward the top, wherever we can get them to stay. Maybe Santa will fix it all when he delivers presents on Christmas Eve 😉 As much as I love our decorations, this year I am really ready to take it all down, just because I’m tired of scolding and chasing Laura around the house, and trying to rescue things before they break.

Next year it will be easier. The boys both know better (and have since about age 2, so that’s why I’m confident that next year won’t be such a problem). They’ve been very helpful redirecting her, and hanging things back up.

Hard to believe that Christmas is so close, though. I still have to finish wrapping some gifts — yikes!

cute & cheap stocking stuffer

By now you are probably very familiar with Groupon. You know how it works: every day they have a deal at a pretty good discount, you opt in, and if enough people snag the deal, you all get it for that price. Most of the stuff on Groupon is for local stores and restaurants (as well as some online shopping sites). But there are other similar sites out there. One I just found out about is called groopdealz and wow — do they have some cute stuff!

Today’s deal is for these sweet Rosette rings from Love Stitched. They are only $4 (plus $2 flat rate shipping, no matter how many you buy), which makes them a really affordable stocking stuffer or gift for your girlfriend. I thought they were super cute and wanted to share them with you!


I still can’t believe how cold it is! This morning, things were even a little colder in the house. We realized that a pipe upstairs was frozen. Yes, in exactly the same place as five years ago. It’s a long story, but suffice it to say that our wonderful plumber fixed it. Sure at about 6:30 this morning I was wishing I could snap my fingers or click here to fix the situation, but at least we caught it before it turned into a real problem. Home ownership is always an adventure, isn’t it?

In other news, this morning a new neighbor came over for coffee. She brought some pastries from Me Oh My Pie Shop in Red Hook and Me Oh My! Were they ever delicious! I think I’ll have to take a visit over there myself.

This week has flown by and I’m not even sure what I’ve accomplished! I think that the closer it gets to Christmas, the faster they days go by. Our weekend is packed full. It’s better than sitting around, bored, though.

Anyway, I just wanted to pop in and say hello! Hope you all had a great week.

menu plan monday, keeping it simple edition

I don’t know about you, but I’m still feeling a little cooking burn-out from Thanksgiving. It could also be due to the fact that we had a jam-packed weekend and Laura’s been waking up around 4 a.m. Yes, by the time dinner rolls around I’m not feeling very motivated. Can you blame me?

Sunday: Indian take-out

Monday: Chicken soup, hot dogs

Tuesday: Chicken cordon bleu, rice with peas, vegetables

Wednesday: Crock Pot chili, beer bread

Thursday: Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, veggies

Friday: Pasta & sauce, salad

Saturday: Steak, fries, salad

For more menu planning ideas, check out Laura at Organizing Junkie.

begininng to look a lot like christmas

This morning this is what we saw outside!

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, isn’t it? It’s just a dusting, but it made me feel a little more festive. I did a little more Christmas shopping today — some toys and mens clothing. I’m practically done! Next week my mother-in-law is supposed to watch Laura for a day so I think I’ll finish things up then.

In today’s mail I received all the photo prints for my Christmas cards, so I look forward to writing out those 🙂 Yesterday we took the kids to see Santa at a local mall. Laura wouldn’t get within five feet of him, but the boys loved it. Noah was so excited he couldn’t stop giggling! This Santa was great. He spent a lot of time talking to the boys and he got a great shot too!


How are you coming along with your holiday preparations?

smile :-)

So today I broke down and bought a Sonicare toothbrush. As you get older you expect certain things: tired bones… crow’s feet… the need for deep wrinkle cream. Never did it occur to me that “dental pockets” and tartar would be on that list. It seems as though since I had Laura, every time I go to the dentist there’s something else. I admit: I’m not the best teeth brusher in the world. I brush at least twice a day, but I’m kind of lazy about it. My hygienist has recommended Sonicare on the last two visits, and it happened to be on sale at Target this week, so now it’s charging. I really hope this makes a difference. I never had dental problems when I was younger. But now that I’m getting old, well… I guess it’s just one more thing that’s falling apart, LOL!