Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Few Of My Favorite Things

Three of my favorite gifts that I received for Christmas this year would have to be my Pioneer Woman Cookbook (yay!), the platter and bowls that match my dish set, and the hat hubby got  me.

I just purchased this piece to hold my cookbooks..  They were previously on my window sill which worked for a while but my window was soon full of cookbooks so I could barely see out the window anymore.

Here's my new favorite cookbook mixed in with all the rest.

My parents are the ones who got me PW's Cookbook.  I found out that they stood in line for 3 hours to get her to sign the book for me.  I was sooo excited when I opened it up to find a little message for me!

Here are the additions my parents got for my dish collection.  I still love them and can't wait for the day I can use them all!

Last, but not least, I love the hat that hubby got for me.  It's been a lifesaver!  I basically haven't done my hair since that day.  ha!  Not really.  I just haven't done it as much as I normally would.  I believe I've worn this hat at least once a day since I've gotten it.
So hopefully you will start seeing picture of PW recipes on my pretty dishes and you won't only see me in a hat from now on!


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Playing In The Snow

It snowed last winter but it was the typical Oklahoma snow - dirty, slushy, and didn't last long.  So, we're considering this year to be JJ's first snow.  He even got to get out and play in it!  Christmas morning we took JJ outside in my parents yard to play for a while before heading to the in-laws.

He wasn't so sure about it at first...

Then he decided that he definitely didn't like it.
As soon as we put him on the sidewalk he was happy as could be.  I actually had a hard time getting him to come back in the house later on.
Hubby with Bentley.
Back inside, peeling off all of the layers.  I love his rosy little cheeks!
  Looking out the window with Brandi.
Bentley decides to join in and see what's going on.
Looking out the window one more time before going to Grandma and Grandpa V's house.


Christmas Blizzard of 2009

I do realize this is after Christmas but I just haven't had time to post.  I do hope you all had a wonderful holiday with your families.  We certainly did!  It was definitely a different Christmas for us this year.  The plan was to have Christmas with my parents and brother on Christmas Eve, our little family would have our Christmas on Christmas morning, and then we would spend the rest of Christmas day with Jorge's family.  That was the plan.  My, how things change.

I made Holiday Cheesecake and Autumn Surprise Pie to take to my parents on Christmas Eve.  They both turned out very good!  My favorite was the pie.

It was the first time I've made a lattice crust so I was pretty happy with how it turned out.  I have finally figured out how to make a great crust (thanks to Pioneer Woman!) so now I love to make pies and this one had such great flavor.  The spices were heavenly!

The cheesecake was very good as well.  It was a basic cheesecake with a hint of orange topped with cranberries.  I 'm not a big fan of cranberries so I could have done without the topping but everyone else seemed to like it.

We planned on leaving the house around 12:00 in the afternoon to head for my parents house (which is about 30 mins. away).  It started sleeting the night before which turned into snow that afternoon.  We knew we were supposed to get about a foot of snow and it would take longer to get to my parents house than normal (thinking maybe an hour) but we had no idea of the events that would follow.  It wasn't too bad when we first got on the road.  Traffic was slow but we were moving and heading in the right direction.  After a while, we got stopped on the highway and sat, moved an inch or two, sat some more, etc.  This went on for a couple hours.  We eventually made it to an exit off of the highway (they closed down the highway) and found ourselves stuck in another huge mess.  It was so surreal - like watching a movie.  There were abandoned cars left in the middle of the road, people were walking, trying to get cars out of ditches and snow drifts.  Thankfully, we were not part of any of these events.  After several hours we decided to stop at a CVS to use the restroom and get some water and snacks.  By this time it was starting to get dark and we thought we were going to have to spend the night in our vehicle.  We were in contact with my parents this whole time to let them know what was going on.  While we were at CVS my Dad decided that he was going to get into his work truck and start heading our way to see if we would even be able to make it to their house that night.  He got to us within 30 minutes.  From there, we followed him to their house and arrived about an hour and a half later.  It took us a total of 6 1/2 hours.  I never would have imagined that it would have taken us so long.  We were so thankful to have arrived safely.  There were many people involved in accidents, many people involved in getting stuck in the snow, and many even had to spend the night in their cars.  A few people even died.  I know God was watching over us and protecting us and we are so grateful.

We had our Christmas meal and opened presents with my family that night.

It was a wonderful evening together.  We, as well as my brother, were not about to attempt to make it back home so we all spent the night at my parents house.  The next morning I made the Pumpkin Goat-Cheese Cheesecake to take to my in-laws while Hubby and my Dad headed back to our house in Edmond to pick up some things.

We made it to the in-laws house about 5:00 that evening and spent the rest of the day there.  JJ got a cute little OU Sooners hat and sweatshirt and a Cowboys outfit.


We didn't get to have our family Christmas on Christmas morning, as planned, so we had it on Saturday morning.  We had a wonderful little family Christmas, just the 3 of us.

All-in-all, it was a great weekend. Didn't turn out exactly how we planned but we were able to spend time with family and no one was severely affected by the blizzard of 2009.  And we got to have 3 Christmases!  :)

It was definitely a memorable Christmas!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Picture With Santa

Last year we started the tradition of taking JJ to get his picture taken with santa.  He did a great job and cooperated beautifully.  This year was a different story.  Last night we went to the mall to get his picture taken.  I was so excited!  I had him dressed in a cute little Christmas outfit and was imagining how precious he would be sitting on santa's lap.  Boy, was I wrong.  It definitely didn't turn out like I had imagined.  I carried JJ to santa and tried to put him on his lap.  JJ immediately stiffened up and clung on to me for dear life.  I knew that that there was no way he was going to sit on santa's lap alone.  We had the option of forcing him to sit on santa's lap and have a picture of a crying little boy or we could join in and have a family picture with santa.  We chose the latter.

Waiting in line to see santa.  See?  Isn't his little Christmas outfit so cute???

Still waiting in line...

Our family picture with santa.  As you can see, we weren't really dressed for the occasion.  If I would have known, I would of had us all dress alike.  Oh, well.

Maybe next year will be a different story and a different picture!


Christmas Cookie Decorating

It is a tradition in our family to decorate Christmas cookies.  We've done it for as long as I can remember and this year was no exception.  Last Thursday our family got together to decorate our Christmas cookies.  It was Jorge's first time so it was fun that we all got to do it together!

JJ was playing with the presents and the tree before we started decorating.

Here's our cookies and decorations.  My brother looks thrilled.  ha!

My Dad is the creative one.  He always has been.  He comes up with things that I would never think of!

Here's Hubby, our Rookie.  Looks like JJ's helping!

My Mom is the one who started this tradition years ago and is the one who has kept it up.  She is the glue that holds our family together.

Here's our Rookie again.  Wow, he got creative on that one!  ha!

Don't know why I look mad here.  I'm not.  I think I'm just concentrating.  This is hard work!  :)

Here's our finished products.  We normally have about double the amount of cookies but we cut back this year.  We decided we really don't need to eat that many cookies.  ha!

Here's a plate with some of the better decorated cookies.  The big one in the middle is one that Dad came up with.  It's an upside down gingerbread man decorated to be santa in a hot air balloon.  See, I told you he was creative!  I never would have thought of something like that!

And this is Jorge's plate of cookies.  We had to take a picture of his because this was his first time - a momentous occasion!

So there ya have it.  Our 2009 decorated Christmas cookies.  I think I get less and less creative every year.  It's a great tradition though and one I am excited to share with JJ in the coming years!



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