Friday, November 30, 2007

My Christmas list!

I wanted to post my Christmas list just for fun. I don't want any of you wonderful friends that read the blog to think this is a hint on what to buy me (because most of it has been purchased already!). I reason I am posting my Christmas list is for me, because it is fun to look back a few years from now and see what I was asking for. So, what do I want this year for Christmas?
2007 Christmas List
1. New ski coat
2. New ski pants
(The last time I got a new ski coat and pants was when I was 14, I'm still wearing them, I think it is time for an upgrade!)
3. Lei Mei- BEAUTIFUL new doll from American Girl that E is getting me!
4. Purple Croc Mary Jane shoes
5. Gift certificate to favorite restaurants
6. B&N and gift certificates
7. American girl items including Emily's snow suit, Nicki's ski outfit and gear, and sleepover PJs.
8. Harry Potter mug and t-shirt

So, that is my Christmas list for this year. Lei Mei is already under the Christmas tree, however E says it is not her, because he's trying to trick me ;).

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

It is snowing!

Oh what a glorious day it is!

Monday, November 26, 2007

I'm not sure I like being a principal...

I am one of three principals at my advertising agency. I can't believe I am four years out of collage and already a key decision maker here. Also, when I graduated from college I had an income goal in mind for myself, that I wanted to reach in 10 years, and only four years later I'm only 20% below my goal. That's pretty awesome.

Then why would I complain? Because being a principal means a lot of stress too. We were rocking and rolling earlier this year, and bringing in quite a few large clients. We geared up to meet the demand by hiring new people, expanding our space, and increasing overhead two fold, but now the work has slowed a little, and suddenly our expensive overhead is hard to pay.

Needless to say, my long weekend was relaxing, but there was a worry in the back of my mind niggling the entire time, and I didn't ever feel like I truly got to relax.

I hope billings for next month looks better...

Friday, November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving - in photographs

I wanted to share a few more of my Thanksgiving photos, because I am lucky enough to not only have one fantastic family, I have two. I love both of them very much. Here are a few photos of the festivities:

E's family's house was where we went first, they always have the table set in beautiful blue and white china. And everyone got a chocolate turkey at their place setting!
How did I get lucky enough to have the honor of carving the turkey? Not quite sure...
Dinner number one
After dinner E's family wanted to pose for a family photo, after five serious ones, I wanted to do a silly photo. I told everyone to do a silly face, but nobody listened.
Next was my aunt's house. Here E and my Grandma were chatting. My Grandma loves E very much (who doesn't?)
Here are three of the people I love most in the world, my brothers Brandon and Chandler and my sister Melissa (and between Brandon's and Chandler's shoulders is my cousin Taylor, I love him too!)
Isn't this the most beautiful presentation you've ever seen? It is a huge bowl of roasted veggies that my Grandma made.
And the centerpiece at one of the three tables set up at my aunt's house.
Dinner number two. It is amazing that I actually felt hungry at all today.

A cute Thanksgiving photo

I had a great Thanksgiving yesterday, I hope you did too. E and I always have two Thanksgiving feasts, first with his family, then with mine.

I love E's family's Thanksgiving, it is wonderful, really low key and very tasty. E's grandma came, which was fun, because she rarely gets out of the house. She loves Thanksgiving because it is one time of year where the food has some taste. Her regular Meals on Wheels is tasteless.

After we ate a full dinner at E's house, we went over to my aunts house. The house was hopping with nearly 20 people, three turkeys, and enough food to feed an army. We had a wonderful time there too, and ate way way too much.

E and I contributed pecan pies to both feasts. Making the pies is pretty easy. Here is a photo of E working on the pies while our sweet little girl "helps" in the kitchen. (This is a regular occurrence, Mabel is underfoot whenever E and I are cooking).

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I HATE this man

I don't use the word hate often, but there is a man that gets the honor, Fred Morris from Utah who "took part in a safari to South Africa last year to kill a southern white rhino whose skin is now being mounted for display at Brigham Young University's Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum". Here is the most disturbing story, that was on the front page of the local newspaper.

That is the most disgusting thing I have ever heard. Not only for the Museum (who was well aware that Morris would commit murder for them), but for the man that thinks it is okay to go out into the wild and kill an endangered animal.

What the hell? Who, in their right mind would think this is okay?

So what can we do about it? The
Brigham Young University's Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum has a contact page here. It will only take a moment, I promise! Tell them what you think!

Top ten things I love about the holidays

I posted this list two years ago on my blog, and wanted to repost it. Looking over the list makes me realize how much has changed in two short years, but the list is still true. I'll make updates in blue.

10. Christmas Music- I am a total sucker for Christmas music. Once Thanksgiving comes and goes, I’m in Christmas music heaven. I love The Carpenters, Neil Diamond and many others. I can’t wait to start singing along once again! True true true! Still the same as today!

9. Fondue- Every year on New Years Eve we have a huge fondue dinner with my family. Crunchy bread, broccoli, and bell peppers all dipped into a cheesy goodness makes for a great night. This tradition stopped after my parents divorce. I'm not sure what we'll do this year for New Years, but it won't be a fondue party with my entire family.

8. Setting up the Christmas tree- the day after Thanksgiving I love to get out all my Christmas stuff, including the tree. I love to do the lights (I know, I’m crazy) and I love to look through all my ornaments looking for my favorites. My cats seem to think it’s a good way to spend an afternoon too. Yes! True! The day after Thanksgiving I love to set up our tree, but now we have a pre-lit tree, so no more fighting with the lights.

7. Christmas Breakfast- Each year on Christmas morning we have this hash brown casserole thing that I refer to at “Christmas breakfast.” It includes hash browns in a sour cream white sauce with ham and baked eggs on top. It always tastes wonderful. Last year was the first year E and I did Christmas morning on our own. We made Christmas breakfast at home, and it was just the two of us. I plan to do the same this year, but maybe make it not as rushed. Last year we were rushing to get to E's house, but it made our own Christmas feel too rushed, this year I might slow down just a bit (sorry Chelsea!)

6. Snow! I love the first snow fall of the season, and it always gets me in the mood for the holidays. I love being in the warm house when big fat flakes are falling outside, and I also love being outside. Sledding, skiing, snowshoeing or just romping around in fresh powder is magical. Yes! It is true! This year we haven't seen snow yet, but I hope it is coming soon.

5. Turkey, stuffing, and cranberry sauce- I love Thanksgiving. I love that I can eat as much as I want, I love all the different types of food, I love being first with E’s family, then with mine (and the double dinner!) and I love that Thanksgiving kicks of the holiday season for me. Yes, I still love Thanksgiving. However, now I have another dinner with my dad. This year we will do something special on Sunday. I wish my family was all in one place for the holidays, but oh well.

4. Presents- I love that Christmas time is the time for giving. I have fun planning my gifts and making sure I have just the right thing for everyone I love. I also like being in the stores around Christmas time, there is such excitement in the air. And wrapping all the presents I’ve purchased and putting them under the tree can’t be missed. (And I love opening my presents on Christmas morning!) Yep! I've already begun my Christmas shopping. I can't wait to purchase more so that there is a heap of gifts under our tree!

3. Luminary Walk- my grandparents started a new tradition a few years ago where we walk to a local cemetery that lights thousands of luminaries right before Christmas. We bundle up, get our flashlights, and set off. The cemetery is so beautiful! When we return we eat a big bowl of chili. Last year we didn't do this. My Grandpa was too sick. This year we won't do it either. :(

2. Christmas Eve- My second favorite thing about the season has to be the Christmas Eve party my grandparents throw each year. All the excitement for the next day is building, the food is spectacular, and it’s so fun to dress up! Everyone is so happy to be together, and we all have a wonderful time. This is my absolute favorite Christmas tradition, but last year was the first in memory that our Christmas Eve party didn't happen. Grandpa was so sick. This year we won't do the party either. Last year's Christmas was so difficult for my Grandma, she is traveling this year for Christmas. Two years in a row without the Christmas Eve party. Maybe next year it will come back.

1. Family- The thing I love most about the holidays is that is about family. It means so much to me being with the people I love that all the other stuff is just an add on. Being with my fiancé, parents, siblings, cousins, grandparents, and aunts and uncles makes me truly thankful for the season. This is still true. My Grandpa is no longer with us, and my Grandma won't be around this year. Also, my parents are divorced so being all together is a thing of the past. However, that doesn't make my relationship with each person less special.

Thanks to Martha Stewart and Google Images for the very fine Christmasy photos!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Yea! It is a short week!

Thursday is Thanksgiving, which means this is my first short week from work in a very long time! Not only do I have Thursday off, but Friday too. And a half day on Wednesday. I remember loving half days as a kid.

So, here are my plans for the week:
Monday- Get to work on time. This is the one day I can't be even a little late, a meeting starts at 8:00 am.
Tuesday- Go to Yoga and at least try to work out before Thursday rolls around
Wednesday-Bake 4 pecan pies and watch Oprah because she is showing the new American Girl doll!
Thursday- Maybe work out in the morning, before eating myself silly at E's house, then mine.
Friday- Set up our Christmas tree and wish Chelsea a happy birthday!
Saturday- Go out to birthday dinner with Ethan's family and enjoy my Christmas decorations.

Sounds like a pretty good week, huh?

Oh yea, and E and I just got back from the farmhouse. Why were we there so late, because we were having unseasonably warm weather and Chelsea and E were caught up in an intense game of badminten. Who won? Nobody knows, but here is the "champion" photo.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Yea! The first American Girl movie due in theaters!

Kit Kittredge is coming to theaters! I can't wait!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Playing with Picasa web album

I've been a member of most online photo sharing websites. My favorite, Imagestation is closing at the end of this year, so now I'm playing with Picasa. Today I uploaded a few photos of E and I over the years, starting with the most recent. (It is really scary that we've been together for almost 10 years, and these are the few photos I have of us together, I'm making a personal pledge to be better). Most of the photos are from our travels.

Anyway, this album stretches all the way back to early 2004! Freaky!

I think you can just click on the photo and it will take you to the album. Tell me how you like it and if I should stick with Picasa.
Ethan and I over the years

Fun photo from last March

Last March E and I joined E's family down in Escalante (remember this post?). While down there we went to an area called Devil's Garden. Here is what I had to say about it in my blog post from March:

After my quick hike, some breakfast, and water bottle fill-up, we were off to an area called Devil's Garden. This mini wonderland had arches, slot canyons, mesas, and deep cracks, all the thinks you'd expect from Southern Utah, but it was all miniature, so it was fun to explore the area, without ever feeling in danger or lost. We even spotted a jack rabbit that didn't seem to skiddish, so we got some great photos!

Anyway, Connie (E's mom) snapped this photo of me while there, and I keep meaning to share it. It was a really fun day (click the photo for a larger view).

Friday, November 09, 2007

Sexy song

Have you heard of Michael Bublé? The sexy Italian/Canadian fellow that can sing hot songs? Well my aunt and uncle introduced us to him when we were in England, and since then E and I have really enjoyed listening to his songs.

When I hear this song (below) I always think of driving fast on the tiny little English roads in the countryside while cow pastures, manor houses, and flowerbeds zip by. I hope you agree it's a sexy song too ;).

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Goodbye Traveling Nora

What a busy autumn for travel dolls. My gosh! First Traveling Lily came to visit me (her album can be seen here, we did a lot of fun things), and the day she left Traveling Nora arrived. At the same time Violet (my travel doll) has been in Canada!

I've never hosted and sent so many girls at once. And I'm getting ready for Inky's birthday at the end of this month! One thing that was fun with Nora was the fact that she has a blog. I love doll blogs (as you can see from this post, I'm sure). In addition to hosting Nora, I was able to help her write on her blog, here is what she had to say today:

Oh the fun I've had here in Utah! I will miss it very much, I have really grown to love the mountains. Before I leave I wanted to share a few more of my photos, and my album, which can be viewed here. I think you will really like my album, we did a lot of fun stuff.

Here I am doing one of my favorite things in autumn, hiking! Check out those beautiful mountains, the one you see in the distance is called Mt. Olympus (like in Greece!). The air was cool and crisp on that day, and the leaves were so yellow!Did you know the 2002 Winter Olympics were hosted in Salt Lake City Utah? Jessica and I went up to the Utah Olympic park. We even got to see some ski jumpers and luge runners practicing! And I have photos of both in my album!
Not all our activities were outdoors (although I love being outside when the weather is so nice!). One day I got to go to a doll show. It was in downtown Salt Lake City in the Fairgrounds. I had such a great time visiting with some of the other girls. Did you know that the tall girl next to me is over 100 years old and from France? She had the prettiest accent! After the doll show we went out for tea, I ordered Vanilla Bean Tea, it was delightful!
Goodbye Utah, I'm off to Colorado!

In addition to helping Nora with her blog I've had great fun watching what Violet has been doing because her host in Canada has kept Violet's blog up to date. Remember, to see what is going on with Violet any day of the year, her blog link is on the right.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I think I lied...

Remember this post where I pronounced my undying love and respect for raspberries? And I said they were my favorite fruit of all time? Well I lied. Every year at this time I go crazy, and I mean crazy for something that is only in season in November - pomegranates.

What the heck are these alien looking fruits anyway? Well according to Wiki they are native to the region from Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran to the Himalayas in northern India and has been cultivated and naturalized over the whole Mediterranean region.

I have grown up in a pomegranate loving family, so I didn't realize how many people didn't know this fruit existed. If you are one of these unlucky humans, you must go out and buy a pomegranate at your local super market, or better yet, at Costco!

Once you are home with your new treasure, how do you go about eating such a fruit? My favorite way to serve a pomegranate is to score it with a knife and break the fruit open, the seeds (which is what you eat) are separated from the skin and pith. The easiest way to do this is by performing this task in a bowl of water, whereby the seeds will sink and the white structures will float to the top. Then I drain the water, chill (because pomegranate is best served cold) and enjoy!!

One last step? Don't share with your husband who doesn't appreciate the glory of the pomegranate ;).

Thanks to Google Images for all the awesome photos.
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