Friday, January 31, 2014

Taking a Bite out of this Birthday

Oh, this birthday week has been fun!  
Friends and family have really come through in spite of the frigid weather and snowy days. Some plans needed to be altered. Some plans needed to be tweaked. Some surprises came along the way as well.
But all the celebrations had food involved. Talk about full platters!

Celebration #1 started out with Lindt chocolate sampling and ended up with burgers and fries and a bit of shopping in between.  Thanks, NB!

Celebration #2 involved a stop at a local hospital (not related to any medical procedures, thank goodness) and ended with a great lunch at Walker Brothers Pancake House. There was a movie in the midst of that celebration which is currently an Oscar nomination.
Oh, baby for this Dutch Baby!  Powdered sugar and squeezed lemon juice top this puffy, eggy pancake  perfection. This treat may have the appearance of snow sprinkled on a mountain range, but it is anything but cold and unwieldy! Thanks for this treat, MJ!!

Celebration #3 was an omlette whipped up by this dynamic duo, Miss E and Wes.
I promise she was heavily supervised with this far-too-long serrated knife.  The omelette was great and loaded with fresh veggies and cheese.

Celebration #4  followed naptime on this same day with a surprise (for her) tea party for three with hot cocoa and muffins- and candles on top of those muffins. 
Sorry, these Three Bears left none for Goldilocks this time!

Celebration #5 happened not long after the tea party with our whole family arriving for dinner made by Wes.  This wasn't our original plan but we just didn't feel right about the little ones out in the extreme cold.  On - hand supplies in freezer, fridge and cupboards would have to do!
(FYI: Swedish meatballs work out just fine in a spaghetti sauce.)
Side note: how could we subject these two Grands to shivering in the cold if we went out to dinner as  planned?  No way!! 
Miss M and K-man are getting to be such buddies these days.  Though 10 months apart they weigh the same.

And now for the cake!  Cheesecake!

You can see I ate very very well during my birthday week and this isn't even the whole week.
Celebration #6: work break with a homemade cobbler, cookies and chocolates!

Holy tight pants, Batman! 
 Good thing birthdays only come around once a year.

Coming next:  the final birthday celebration (and the theme reveal) with my Sis because you asked for it.  Yes, the food in this one is pretty impressive as well!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Bye Bye Kitty

It has been about of month of prepping time for the BIG day of Miss E's fourth birthday celebration.
She is simply gaga over a certain white cat with two black eyes, a yellow nose, six whiskers and a bow on the right ear.  You know that kitty, don't you?

Prepping started with going to the fabric store to find just the right fleece print to make a robe and pajamas pants for our kitty lover.
   Then, the remaining kitties were "fussy cut" to fuse to the party favor bags.

Yes, the zebra print is my ironing board cover.

This was a rather tedious task, but I was entertained by Juan Pablo during the tediousness, so it wasn't all that bad.  Wink wink!
With the remaining scraps, I made a sleeping outfit for Bella who resides at our home and with whom Miss E. has as a snuggle partner...every girl should have a woolly green elephant companion with pink ears, don't you think?
Finally it was time to wrap all these gifts and head to the city to have a date with our birthday girl.  An early present was some pretty fancy jewelry to wear on said date.
The sunglasses were a gift from another special admirer, Carolyn.

We were just getting started with the whole Kitty thing!  This was followed by a fun family get together with pizza and both grandmas in attendance!  As well as aunt, uncle, cousin, Papa, sister and parents.

Can I hear a Meeeeeooooow here?

The big hit of the party was a new kitty keyboard that meows out the notes and tunes.  I am definitely coming over to play with this new toy!!!!  Do note the look of sheer joy on the face of her Daddy!

Here's the finished robe!  Bedtime beckons.

The following day brought still more celebrating.
I celebrate her Mom's talents in cake construction, decorating and frosting prowess!

The bigger cake will have candles to be added later.
What a fun time was had by this little Miss!
The question now is:

Has she had enough of the Kitty?
I think so! I think so?
Hello, Four and Bye Bye Kitty!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Resolution Word 2014

Each year, instead of making a list of New Year's resolutions, I choose one word as an inspiration.
It's a word to encourage growth in this human journey.
Past inspiration words include savor, turnover, mindful, zip and trim.

This year a word came to me quite easily!
At a recent family gathering, I mentioned that I had found the word and it started with the letter "e."
My sister, her husband, my husband and a niece started guessing and these are some of their guesses:

*elephant (??)
*eggs (???)

This group needed obvious help!  So I then told them the word ended in a "k."  

We all had a good laugh when one came up with the word "electric-shock."  And another (the mis-speller of the group) came up with "electrolux."  With a few prompts as to what some of my plans were, the word was actually deciphered and it is

This may seem like an odd word to you. But not to me.  You see, this is going to be a big year in terms of my career.  I have been at the library for 23 years (8 years first round and 15 second round), and a teacher for stints totaling 15 years and I am about to retire!  I am embarking on the journey of chosen unemployment --- and it is both scary and exciting at the same time.  I hope to embark upon a new venture of doing what I love as an artist/crafter and hoping to join the etsy world.  This will allow me the freedom of time with those I love as well as travel opportunities and exploration of things I have dreamed of in the past years.  As in any journey, there are sure to be bumps and detours along the way.  Embarking on a new venture is certain to be a challenge, but I think I am ready!

Are you embarking on a journey this year, too?  Bon Voyage!

And, Happy New Year!!