Friday, December 31, 2010

gingerbread cookies

Christmas Eve was spent at my dad's house. We spent a lot of the morning baking all kinds of cookies. Carson (my little half-brother) wanted to help me make the gingerbread. He helped measure and pour and mix. Once the dough was formed, we carried it to the fridge because it needed to harden. As we put the dough in the fridge and placed it on the shelf, Carson said to me, "We both make a great team." Uhhh, have you ever heard anything so cute?!

Here we are with the dough before refrigerating it, and below is the mess we made.
Faith is Carson's little sister, my half-sister.
Evelyn working hard!

Yay for gingerbread cookies! They were quite tasty too!
All this cookie baking and picture taking makes me think of this, and that makes me happy :)

enough said

smoked turkey

Every year (well, starting last year) each staff member has received a fully cooked smoked turkey just before Thanksgiving. I decided to bust mine out of the freezer and have people over. We made smoked turkey sandwiches with homemade cranberry sauce, and it was de-licious!

Adam made the cranberry sauce and I will never go back to canned cranberries again. All it is is a 12 ounce bag of fresh cranberries, a cup of sugar, and a cup of orange juice. Just let it do its thing on the stove, and ta-da! you're finished!

Turkey and champagne- what a great combination! We actually used the champagne to make poinsettias (champagne with cranberry juice).
The meal was a big hit!

Sonja came in town for the weekend, so she was able to partake in the festivities!
Adam and Linden were there too!
All in all, a great night!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

christmas party

Our classroom Christmas party was a big hit. The kids decorated cookies, played a Christmas game, decorated ornaments, and completed Christmas word finds and crossword puzzles. Afterward they showed off their mad dance skills!!

staff dinner

We had our first ever Christmas event for staff outside of Yellowstone. A big outing was planned to the original Ninfa's! It was so much fun gathering outside of school and having a good time celebrating the end of semester.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

100 posts!

Wow, I never thought that I would be able to blog so much! 100 posts in one year and still counting!

Here are a few highlights throughout the course of the year.

A video of our wonderful dog Dallas, showing the youngster how it's done.

Trip to San Francisco with Leticia to visit Laurin.

Moving Rachel to Omaha.

Going to great concerts, including this one.

Trip to the DR!!!!!!!!!!

Fun outings.

Weddings, including this one!!!

Great time with family.

Monday, December 20, 2010

new york :)

Yes, its true. New York. Twice in one year. Heck yes.

So, Leticia moved to New York in August and I went for a quick visit for her birthday. I wasn't quite sure what the weather would be like, as it was my first trip to the Big Apple in December, but for some reason it did seem to make the holidays more apparent. What is it about cold weather that does that?!

When I landed into JFK I had to put on BOTH of my enormous peacoats (along with scarf and gloves) to feel somewhat warm. Fortunately it warmed up as the weekend progressed, though I guess I wouldn't've minded if it had snowed...

The next day we started the day off right by going to the hole in the wall Dominican restaurant. We thoroughly enjoyed chicharrones de pollo, arroz y habichuelas, tostones, y cafe con leche (claro). SO GOOD. Man, I miss the DR. Leti and I were talking about how very few people would have enjoyed that as much as we did. We were the only non-Dominicans in the place, the chef kept yelling out from the kitchen (spitting image and mannerisms of a cobrador, I kid you not), and we were only allowed to pay in cash. Ha!

That afternoon we tried to walk off the comida by doing some shopping. Christmas markets were set up everywhere. Vendors selling everything from knit hats to ornaments to jewelry to vegan hot chocolate (Poof, it was so good!). I may or may not was able to get quite a bit of Christmas shopping done. Check.

That night we went to this really cool restaurant called Burger and Barrel, and devoured gourmet burgers and a bottle of wine. The place had a really cool vibe, and the birthday dessert topped off the night!

The next day, Leti and I met up with my really great friend Daniel for brunch. His girlfriend Kelly met up with us and we walked around the city, taking in more Christmas markets, decorated Christmas trees, and ice skaters. We went up to Daniel's office (as it is in the heart of the city) and got some coffee out of the cold.

Later that afternoon as it started getting dark, we made our way to the tree at Rockefeller Plaza. All we could pretty much do was get a picture and skidattle. There were so many people there it was ridiculous!

We quickly escaped the crowds of tourists (after shooting a few more pictures) and explored more of the city that has become Leti's home. We passed Christmas trees for sale outside of mini-marts, and walked through markets and other groceries and stores off the beaten path. We had dinner in the East Village at this amazing Thai restaurant and after a bit more exploring made it back to her apartment in Queens.

It was a super quick trip, but so good and so worth it! Happy Birthday, Leti!!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

dinner party

The other day I went to a dinner party with new friends! You may remember my friend Lindsey, who went with me spur of the moment last year to a John Mayer and Michael Franti and Spearhead concert. She invited me to a dinner party with some of her Houston friends, Heather, Greg, and Bronson. We took a few pictures, unfortunately none of the food which was sad because it was dang good! Enjoy!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

chase gets married

My cousin Chase got married over the weekend, and it was definitely a family affair! Below are some highlights of the big night!

Siblings- Mike, Toddy, Larry, Dianne, Kathy, Cheryl

Pictured here with my grandma. man, she had a lot of kids!

Chase and Melina

cutting the cake

a proud father of the groom.
who would not stop filling people's wine glasses, i might add.

my grandparents back in the day

Brace yourself for the next pictures.........

my grandma kissing Evelyn's chest

thinking that it is hysterical

and finally posing for a "normal" picture

no words needed

reliving the glory days!