Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Living In Limbo

I'm having a difficult time making the seasonal transition switch this year.

We seem to have quite the mixture of Fall and Christmas going on at the same time.

I did finally collect all of the pumpkins from the yard, porch and deck yesterday morning. I also took down the Autumn garland hanging around the front door. Maybe from the outside no one can tell that I'm still on the fence about when to pull out all the Christmas stuff.

Maybe if I just start adding in a few things here and there the house will magically decorate it's self.

I couldn't wait to put out the Peppermint Kisses, or start burning my Song of Angels candle.

I've got the hot cocoa and the Holiday Oreos, along with some leftover Halloween cookies that I found in the freezer the other night.

I've also got the super cute Fresh Market Christmas wine collection.

Now we just need a tree and some lights and a couple of glasses.

That ought to about do it.

Hope your decorating is going much more smoothly.


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Chair

My Dad has this thing for these chairs made by a Scandinavian company called Ekornes. His old chair had seen better days. The arm rests were being held together with Duct tape. He finally decided to buy a new one for his birthday last April. Of course he couldn't possible throw away the old chair... No, that wouldn't be right.

Lucky for David his Grandfather was able to have new arm rests made which makes the chair look "almost" new.

Grandpa thought the chair would be perfect in David's apartment and David totally agreed with him.

The only problem was how to get the chair from Greensboro to Norfolk. No matter how hard they tried they could not get it to fit into David's car. The only solution... Take it apart.

Easier said than done. Apparently European tools are different from American tools. With some hard work and patience the guys were finally able to get it apart so that it could fit.

David got it back to his apartment only to realize that he had forgotten the footstool. I guess I'll be heading back to the post office.


Monday, November 28, 2011

Just Me and the Boys

With Grace off seeing the world it was just me and the boys this Thanksgiving. There were times when I felt just a little bit out numbered, but for the most part we had a lovely holiday weekend. I've already told you about our meal and except for the fact that we had to visit two Fresh Markets in Greensboro to figure out which one I actually ordered the food at, it was delicious. The turkey was probably the best I've ever reheated. If you are ever in a pinch I highly recommend you give the Fresh Market traditional Thanksgiving Dinner a try.

The rest of the weekend was filled with watching football, computerizing and sneaking in a nap or two.

While not all of our favorite teams were winners, we had a great visit with family and friends and that's what Thanksgiving is all about. I hope that yours was just as wonderful and now you are all rested up and ready to tackle December.


Monday, November 21, 2011

It's Turkey Time

Thanksgiving week has officially begun! I hope that you all have fun plans to visit with loved ones and eat all of your favorite foods. Since that is exactly what I'm going to be doing, my blogging posts will be very "light" if at all this week. There is just so much to do and so little time to do it in.

Do you remember my telling you that last year we ordered our entire Thanksgiving feast from The Fresh Market ? I know that some of you probably think that that is cheating, but for us and our circumstances it was a blessing. I am very thankful for the amazing cooks at the Fresh Market, so we are planning to have them prepare our meal again this year.

Our table will be a little smaller this year without Grace to join us. This will be our first Thanksgiving ever without her. She will be enjoying a meal prepared by the International Study Abroad program. It all sounds a little sketchy to me. They are to meet at a Burger King in Granada. It should be an interesting story.

The picture above shows "exactly" what our meal will look like. I think my most favorite thing on the menu is the orange cranberry relish. We still have not figured out dessert. If I'm feeling ambitious I may make an apple pie, or I might just buy one and say that I made it. I'll let you know.

Enjoy your week. Try not to over do it. If you are planning to be one of those crazy midnight shoppers on Friday stay safe. I'll be enjoying a good nights sleep.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

It's in the Mail

About 10 or 11 years ago I made Advent stockings for my kids out of a pair of old blue jeans. I decorated them to suite each child's interests at that time. Here is Grace's stocking decked out in flowers and peace signs. David's has more of a sports theme to it. Every year I fill them up with 24 little goodies, enough to last until Christmas. Starting December 1st they are supposed to take out just one surprise each day. Now that they are all grown up I keep on filling their stocking each year, but I'm pretty sure they just dump out the whole thing on the first of December and have at it. I guess since I'm not there to see it happen I can still pretend that they are counting down the days until Christmas just like me.

I usually put the stockings together around Thanksgiving. That way I can give David his when we see him. This year I had to plan a little further in advance so that I could get Grace's mailed off to Spain. The deal with mailing packages to Spain is that you want to keep them under 4 pounds. Over that and it costs about $50.00. More than the sum total of everything in the stocking. Trust me I have learned this the hard way. Between Alan and I we took this box to the post office 3 times to be weighed. I even switched boxes to drop a few ounces.

I'm happy to report that it weighed in at 3.13 lbs

I was very excited. I think the lady waiting on me thought I was a little too excited, but what do I care. Grace's stocking is in the mail. Now if I could just find David's.... He says that it's here, but I've looked everywhere.


Friday, November 18, 2011

It Can't Be Stopped...

I never should have had that Gingerbread Latte last week. Just drinking it gave me that little "oh my gosh Christmas is just around the corner" feeling. You know what I'm talking about? All of a sudden it hit me that there were still lots and lots of things that I needed to get done, and my time was running out. I have a love/hate relationship with that feeling. Sure it would have been nice if I had gotten all of my shopping and craft making done way back in July, but since that never happens, this crazy little "panicky" feeling gives me the push I need to prioritize and get busy.

The first "must get done" project really did start back in July, but then took a back burner to other more pressing matters.

Do you remember when I showed you this colorful mess and asked you to guess what it was going to be?

Well if you guessed Christmas stockings, you were absolutely right!

I finished them up the other night and have had them hanging from the mantle ever since. They go quite nicely with all of my Autumn/Thanksgiving decorations.

If you are interested in the details I'll give more info on my Projects page at the top of my Blog.

One more thing that I'm kind of embarrassed to mention is that I've been listening to holiday music in my car all week. I really do try to wait until after Thanksgiving, but I just happened upon the station by accident and there you have it.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

It Was Pretty While It Lasted

Remember this beautiful tree from Monday's post?

Well, Monday night we had a pretty big storm blow through.

When I woke up Tuesday morning the poor tree looked like this and most of it's pretty red leaves were scattered all over the ground

It was funny to see where some of the leaves decided to "stick". I promise that all of the leave are exactly where I found them. None of these pictures were staged. I Promise.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Do you remember the Giant Granny Square Afghan that I made last year? Well, Maggie seems to have claimed it as her own. She loves the darn thing. I try to keep it hanging over the back of the couch, but if she sees it there she will pull it down and arrange it just so.

I'd probably make a bigger fuss over it if she weren't so darn cute. I guess I'll just have to make another one for the people of the house.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I Married a 14 Year Old

You know that commercial where the newlyweds are waiting at the airport to go off on their honeymoon and the husband gets a text saying that "McRib is back"? He is so upset that he is going to miss out and his new wife says "I've married a 14 year old. I love that commercial. I can't figure out what it is about the McRib, but Alan is a huge fan. We don't even eat at McDonald's unless we are traveling. But when the McRib is back Alan is as excited as a little kid.


Monday, November 14, 2011

The Color Is RED

For as long as I can remember "red" has been my favorite color. It just makes me happy. Imagine how excited I was to move into a house with a red front door. Today I'm going to take you on a little tour of all of the "red" that is decorating our yard. It really does add a pop of color to all of the dying brown that just naturally shows up this time of year.

I know the tomatoes are still a little on the "orange" side, but if this warm weather we are having holds for a few more days, they too will be bright red and yummy. Who knew we would still be harvesting tomatoes in November?

Hope you are enjoying your favorite color.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

It's The Small Things

When does the "holiday season" officially begin? I used to think it was with Thanksgiving, but this year it seems to have started with the first weekend in November for us. We have so many things and so many people to be thankful for and I guess November is just the month to be reminded of how lucky we truly are.

Today I'm going to share with you a few of the "little" things that made me especially happy this past week.

Remember this adorable wine bottle that Jacqueline brought with her from Iowa? It's called Penitentiary Red and it came with cute little handcuffs, but that wasn't even the best part. When we opened it up the cork popped out with the word GUILTY stamped on it. I just love little unexpected touches like that.

Something else unexpected happened while I was paying for my groceries at the Fresh Market.

The friendly man bagging my purchases handed me this perfect pink rose. OK, so he was passing them out to all of the customers that day, but it sure did make me feel special, and it just gave me one more reason to LOVE that store.

I also found these "fall like" tulips on sale at Trader Joe's. Can tulips be "fall like". I always think of them as spring flowers, but the yellow and red caught my eye not to mention the super cheap price. How does that store make any money?

I got out my tiny turkey candle holders from William-Sonoma. My friend Angela and I bought these together years ago and I just adore them.

They were just the right thing to go on the table last night when my cousin Edward came for dinner. He lives outside of Atlanta with his wife and girls and was in Louisville working on a book project. We haven't seen him in a few years, so it was nice to have a chance to catch up.

He brought us this sweet little box of Bourbon Truffles. I'm going to save them for a special occasion.
I have to say that dinner turned out to be quite yummy. I stuck with an autumn theme: Roasted Rosemary Pork Loin, Individual Sweet Potato Casseroles, Wild Rice Salad and of course Rosemary and Sea Salt Dinner Rolls from the Fresh Market. For desert I was going to serve Apple Turnovers with Vanilla Ice Cream, but we were all too full to enjoy them so we just had a cup of coffee instead. I forgot to take any pictures but I will go ahead and post some of the recipes for you just in case you need to whip up an Autumn feast for the people that you care about.

Finally, and I know you are getting tired of hearing about Trader Joe's, but these are my two favorite finds from this week. The Sweet and Spicy Pecans are great right out of the bag, but even better in the wild rice salad and sweet potatoes that I mentioned above. The Triple Ginger Snaps are just too good for words. I am a Ginger Snap kind of girl and all I can say is that these little cookies make me very happy.

I hope that you too are appreciating "the little things" this weekend.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011


I can't believe that I almost forgot to show you these pictures of the wine that Jacqueline brought with her from Iowa last weekend.

Are these labels not just the most adorable wine labels that you have ever seen?

This one with the handcuffs really had me laughing and honestly the wine was delicious too.

She brought them all boxed up pretty from a wine tour that she supposedly went on while waiting to attend a soccer game. Wine...Soccer... Let's just think about that for a minute.

She also brought some Iowa beer/ale. So you can see that we had a mighty fine weekend and that doesn't even include the Breeder's Cup "before party", the actual Breeder's Cup, or the Breeder's Cup "come down party".

I might have to lay off the booze for a while. I'm just saying....