Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving Wrap Up

We celebrated Thanksgiving Day with Lunch at the Sugar Hill Diner with Amber and Bob, had our annual tradition of Chinese food dinner with his mom, dad, sister and her friend, and spent time with Dana and David for the late night. I wish I took pictures of each of these events, but I did not. We had a full day of fun, family and friends. I also did some baking of the turkey that you already saw.
 As David was slicing the turkey you saw and of course you know who was sitting right next to his feet.
 Our turkey was so juicy and wonderful.
 I made sweet potato casserole for our day after thanksgiving celebration
and also Apple Pumpkin bread, which is always a favorite. I made a mandarin orange jello as well, but I must not have taken a picture.
On Friday it was time for our real thanksgiving celebration. We went over to Davids sister Gina's house. Look at all the great table settings. 
Here is the whole gang. I think we had around 20 people.
 Individual family shots. First up Darrin (his brother) Stacey, Ashley, Austin, Annslee. Can you tell that Uncle David has rubbed off on Austin.
 Mary and Kaleb
 Gina, Mark, Adam, Kathleen, Ian
 Kim, Scott, Jake, Josh(working).
Me and David
The siblings with his parents. We had a great celebration and I'm so thankful to have a wonderful in-law family to spend gatherings with. Pin It

Monday, November 29, 2010

Highlights of Thanksgiving Weekend

We had a great time relaxing, cooking, cleaning, cooking, cleaning and enjoying friends and family. I wish it didn't have to end. Here are some of the highlights for a quick monday post.
David and I made a turkey. His parents had an extra and we were making it in case we needed extra. We had fun marinating and cooking it. It's nice to just see if you can do it and we had fun. I have made 1 before and it was disastrous. It was for work and it was so big that I couldn't lift it out of the oven. David wasn't home that year and I spilled liquid into the oven which caused smoke everywhere and our fire alarm to go off. I swore I would never do one again, but this was only a 12 lb turkey and I had a good helper.
 I wore boots over my new skinny jeans! Thanks to my friend, Dana I really liked them!
We did a little black Friday shopping, nothing crazy as we really didn't need too much, but I think next year we want to plan to go since most stores open at midnight we can stay up and get started. I got these flannel king sheets from Target for $14! They are so toasty and warm, I love them already. Stay tuned for more weekend fun this week. Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. Pin It

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope everyone has a great holiday filled with family, food and lots of thanks. We'll be spending Thanksgiving day with family and friends here in Georgia, but we don't celebrate our Turkey day until Friday with Davids family. I can't wait. As you read this I'll be cooking away I'm sure. I also want to wish my family (shout out to my sister in TX, brother in Vegas, grandma, parents and extended family in NY) a Happy Thanksgiving, wish we could be there and everywhere. We are thankful for health, family, friends, each other and all our blessings. We are very blessed. Happy Thanksgiving. Pin It

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Work Thanksgiving Luncheon

We had our work thanksgiving luncheon last Friday and  it was so very good. It is nice to get in the Thanksgiving spirit a few days early.
 Here is our table shot, please don't look at my socks. It was a casual day, not like any other day isn't, but lets just go with that.
 Some of the gals. Missed you Leah.
Some of the food spread. I was very excited because there was honey baked ham!
I made Pioneer Woman Creamy Mashed Potatoes and brown sugar glazed carrots. If you are needing a last minute mashed potato recipe then you have got to use this one. It was amazing! 
 Brown sugar glazed carrots
Here is my plate. Of course I had to get noodles and pasta. That's one reason I like our potlucks here, there is always a fun variety. Pin It

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Date Night in Atlantic Station

On Saturday night I planned a date night, on a budget of course. My plan was for us to go to the Bodies Exhibit (David has been wanting to go for forever), Grab Dinner and drinks at the Grape, and Watch the tree lighting all at Atlantic Station. I got half off tickets for bodies, originally $26 but from half off depot they were $12 each. I also had a groupon for $25 (paid $10) to the grape. It is a wine bar place, but they have food and other beverages.
 I wanted to show off my outfit, this is my sweater dress, fancy tights and my new boots.
 This is the tree before the lighting obviously. It is in the center of all the restaurants. If you've never heard of Atlantic Station, check it out here. It is basically an outdoor shopping mall area with restaurants and a movie theater with underground parking. There are apartments and such above the shops and down the street are really cool condos. David and I always pretend that we live in one of them and that we go to our second house on weekend and are hip and trendy in this life.
 Here we are before we went to the Bodies Exhibit. You aren't allowed to bring your camera, phone or bags into the exhibit. So this is the last picture before we went in. I took some photos from the internet to show you what it looked like inside.
 We got to see ligaments, bones, tendons and everything inside and outside your body right up close.
 Check this out. They showed you stages of a fetus from 4 weeks to 20 weeks. That was crazy, it looks like a very small tiny alien, even at the 8 week point.
This is really what it looked like inside the exhibit. We opted for the listening device that talked to us throughout each little station.
 After we got out it was dark and still quite warm out so that was nice. They had a company that was producing snow throughout the night. We were trying to see what it was made of and we found the snow! It is a soapy mixture and helium they said. We found this on a table on the 2nd floor of where we were. They made them in shapes of snowflakes and sent them of in to the air.
 We went to the grape and opted to sit outside since it was so nice. We split the Pulled Pork/Chicken flat bread and it was very tasty!
And then it was time to get packed in to watch the tree lighting. It was very pretty.
After a few seconds the snow blasters started and it looked like a snowy blizzard. That was my favorite part.
Here I am covered in a little snow. It was better in person than you can see in this photo, trust me. We had the best time and got in the holiday spirit. Pin It

Monday, November 22, 2010

No More Margaritaville

Last weekend I was cleaning up some dishes in the sink and I turned on the disposal and heard a terrible noise! Something was stuck in there. Well, it was a tiny shot glass that was now broken into huge pieces (thank goodness David was home and doesn't mind sticking his hand in there). The loud noise was our disposal breaking, after he cleaned it out it didn't work at all. This was not in the budget and I wasn't going to be happy buying a new one. So David had a good idea. Do you remember his homemade margarita machine?
It has a brand new garbage disposal inside. We made the resourceful decision of taking it out of the margarita machine and using it for the kitchen sink. I didn't want to spend $100 + right now so it was the perfect solution. Now, the Margarita machine is out of commission for the winter. If we choose to bring it back to life in the summer months then we can do so.
We discovered it was a perfect match for our sink so that must have been a good sign. Here David is with his lovely head light exploring the disposal. It was actually dark since we cut the breaker and my flash made it seem like it was light in there. Molly is a good helper isn't she. I'm so thankful David can fix anything, I would have to live in an apartment forever!
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Friday, November 19, 2010

Sausage and Tortellini Soup

Since the weather has been cooler at night, it's been perfect for soup. I am not a huge canned soup fan, but love homemade soups. I made this last year and loved it! It it a little more expensive to make than I would have liked, but its worth it! The recipe comes from Our Best Bites. By the way, they are coming out with a cookbook in February if anyone is interested. 
Tortellini Sausage Soup
3 links Italian sausage (I got mild)
4 cloves pressed garlic
1 onion, diced
½ c. water
2 cans chicken broth
½ c. apple cider (don't leave this out!)
1 16-oz. can diced tomatoes
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 c. sliced carrots
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
2 medium zucchini, grated (great way to use your food processor if you have one)
8-10 oz. package cheese tortellini (check the freezer section of your grocery store; if you can find it there, it will almost always be way cheaper than fresh tortellini. Also, Barilla makes a great dry cheese tortellini)
2 Tbsp. dried parsley (yes, that's two tablespoons)
If you're using link sausage, remove the casings and crumble into a large soup pot. By the way, I put everything directly into my huge soup pot, so that's really the only big dish you have to wash. To remove the casings, you can use a sharp knife to cut a slit down one side of the sausage and then peel back the casing.
Begin cooking sausage over medium heat, stirring frequently. If your sausage is pretty fatty, you'll want to drain it when it's about halfway cooked. Meanwhile, chop onions and garlic and add to the sausage. Continue cooking until onions are translucent and your sausage is cooked. Your house will smell heavenly.

Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, juice, water, chicken broth, carrots, oregano, and basil. Cover and simmer for 1/2 hour.
I love using our grater, not that I use it that often but it does come in handy.
Look how cute the zucchini looks.
Add parsley and zucchini and simmer for another 15 minutes or so.
Add the tortellini and cook until tender, and then serve with bread and freshly-grated Parmesan.
I love how all the spices mix with all the ingredients. 
It is the perfect soup for fall/winter. Enjoy and have a great weekend!
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Magic Tree of Doggie Toys

The past couple of months Molly keeps coming through her doggie door with new dog toys that I've never seen before. It would be great if we had a magic tree that grew doggie toys, but I knew that wasn't the case.
 Do you see how she is already claiming it as her own by putting her paw on it. We already have a rope toy which she doesn't touch.
 This is her favorite toy which she has found that she loves.
 Here is toy #3. So on the weekend when it was light enough (because its dark now when I get home) I went to explore what was going on.
 Behind our rose bushes and trees is a path that Molly has made along the back fence where she runs back and forth chasing the dog on the other side of the fence. I don't know if you can see the hole that's to the right of Molly. That is a small one compared to the others we found. Now, I don't think Molly is fully to blame, the hole looks like it was started on the other side of the fence. They have a beautiful Siberian Husky and a few times I've seen his/her pretty blue eyes and face come through the hole. I'd like to think that the dog next door is giving Molly some toys so they can play together.
 David got some rocks and put a nice barricade along the fence where the holes are (we've tried to fill them with dirt but it happens again and again).
Finished product. I have given back almost all the toys. I have thrown them back over the fence at night when I know that no one is outside over there. Don't judge.
It's hard to give them back when Molly looks like this after I tell her they have to go back. I did let her keep one of the small red ones. She loves it so much that I haven't had the heart to give it back. It looks like the other dog has plenty of toys, right? Pin It
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