Sunday, December 18, 2011

Tis the Season

We threw a big Christmas party last night! It was so much fun and will definitely be a new tradition!

Vanilla bean cupcakes with buttercream frosting, red velvet cream cheese brownies, sausage dip, chocolate covered pretzels and gingerbread cookies.

Eggnog cheesecake bars and spiced rosemary nuts that Bryan made! The nuts were spicy and wonderful! Good job, babe!
Eggnog, whipped cream, hot chocolate, apple cider, marshmallows and gingerbread houses!
Everything was labeled so that no one was in danger of accidentally ingesting something they might have allergies to (nuts) or eating something against their dietary restrictions (gelatin).

Mulled Cider and tiny gingerbread houses for garnish on the side of your cup! See the one perched on the "Merry Christmas Y'all" cups above? Aren't those fun? My mom sent me some from Mistletoe Marketplace!

Homemade marshmallows: cinnamon, powdered sugar, cocoa, peppermint

Bryan arranged the kitchen so he could mix drinks and chat.
The seasonal cocktail menu: Amazing!

A Partridge in a Pear Tree gingerbread.
Pattern Here


There ended up being about 25 people here, and everything was perfect! We met some new friends of friends, wished old friends the happiest of holidays and vowed to see everyone in the new year! I can't believe how fast this year flew by!

Friday, December 16, 2011


As I browsed through Pinterest in a complete stupor recently I came across several old ceramic Christmas trees.
I really liked them and started looking online for one of my own when I remembered my grandmother having a similar one in her living room every year when I was little. I asked my dad if I was remembering correctly. To which he asked his mom where the tree might be found now. Anyway, my dad tracked it down and shipped it to me! It arrived today and has been dusted, filled with brand new light bright pegs and plugged in!

This tree makes me so happy! It's so festive and will be a new staple in my living room for Christmas!!
Thank you, Daddy! See you next week!

Monday, December 12, 2011

The War

An epic battle between man and beast has begun. Every night between midnight and 4:00am Bryan awakens, flashlight in hand, to scratching, clawing, chewing and scurrying.
It's a mouse. And he's tormenting us.
Tonight he will meet his maker:

Hasn't he heard who he's up against? Bring it on, sir, bring it on.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


After searching for days without luck, I finally found mistletoe at a small florist near our house. I wanted some for our party next weekend.
I soaked a ball of floral foam, cut the mistletoe branches into short pieces and attached them with some needle nosed pliers!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Gingerbread Land

I'm hanging out with two of my favorite ladies tonight, Martha and Adele!
We took on the task of making a gingerbread house. I think it turned out really well!!
We spread out icing, candy, marshmallows, almonds and coconut shavings and went to work:

I did any piped icing you see and they did the candy adhesion. Martha decorated the roof in the second shot, Adele decorated the roof in the top picture. I looked over at her roof and it was covered in gum drops, pez, candy cane, m&m's and marshmallows.... By the time we were ready to put her roof on the house it was picked completely clean of said candy. When I asked what happened she told me she wanted to taste them, then she wanted to eat them.
I think they did an excellent job! They even let me decorate a side (the almond shingles side) and the pez-brick two-sided chimney (which is what happens sometimes when gingerbread kits are made by ikea. I'd rather be missing two chimney pieces than those two screws that actually hold some important furniture piece together).
Oh, and per their instructions, the back wall is decorated with Mommy, Daddy, Martha and Adele stick figures.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Right Stuff: Eggnog

 Since it gets dark here at 4:00, what better way to spend hours and hours of evening than by making salt dough gift tags and home made eggnog?!
Thanks to Katy Elliott for the salt dough ornament recipe!

Bryan loathes the fact that I annually purchase a carton of eggnog at the grocery store. It's what I grew up with. It's the taste of Christmas... he thinks it's disgusting... and it probably is terrible.
But this year: The Year of Cocktails!
Bryan whipped up a couple of eggnog recipes to try out and this one was perfect! So yummy!
 I love love love knowing all the ingredients in the things that I eat. That's one of the main reasons why I love to cook and make jam and garden and meet farmers at the farmer's market. This one was simple and was about 5 ingredients.

 He topped it off with a grating of fresh nutmeg! He drank about two sips and left the rest for me. Even the homemade stuff isn't his favorite.

Thanks for your favorite Christmas movies! I've added them to our list and also remembered how much I love A Nightmare Before Christmas so that one is on the list, now, too! I've never seen the older Christmas movies that you mentioned, Marley, so that's a new priority!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Family Stone

I'm going through our Christmas movies, as I do every year.
Home Alone- check
Love Actually- check
A Christmas Story- check
Now I'm currently watching The Family Stone--- laughing and crying!
I always forget how much I love this movie!

What other good Christmas movies should we add to our collection this year??? Which ones do you love?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Time is Here

We are somewhat decorated for Christmas! We still need a big gingerbread house and egg nog!!
(and friends of course!)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

So Very Thankful

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving this year! My mom, step dad, and sister (Aimee), came up to spend a few days with us.
We saw most of Boston while they were here:


Chihuly tree

Sam Adams for a tour and tasting

The Christian Science Mother Church's pipe organ with thousands of pipes. Frank plays the organ so he was especially excited to see this.

Harvard Yard which is being occupied by students. No one without a student ID can get into the yard.


Old State House on the freedom trail

Old north church on the freedom trail

The public garden and the commons

The Arnold Arboretum

And of course we did eat so much yummy food and shared the day with friends who could also make it over to our house.

We skyped Elizabeth again this year only this time it was from Vienna instead of Atlanta! We miss you, Elizabeth! Can't wait till you get here for Christmas!



The 85th Macy's Day parade on the tv we picked up for free from someone on craigslist!! We only wanted the tv for one day and were not crazy enough to buy one so this was perfect!! It's just not thanksgiving if there's no parade involved.

And of course there was Black Friday shopping. Aimee wanted to go be one of the first hundred in line at H&M so that we could get scratch off cards worth anywhere from $5-$300. We all went at 3am and waited for the store to open. We each ended up with $25 cards so we all got a free item or two! Then we walked Newbury street and stopped at some other places where we found some great deals! We were up and shopping for 8 hours by 10am. That was bananas! (but we'll never forget it!) and Bryan was thrilled that he didn't get roped into going at all!

(thanks for taking all these pictures! They are all courtesy of my mom, Teresa!)

We miss you already and are so glad you made it up here!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

How did I miss this??

I can't believe I never posted Halloween pictures!

Chowing down on pizza and apple juice at the park!!
P.S. she's a watermelon...