Friday, December 26, 2008

end of December fun




Snow Fun

:

We went up north for a few days--left our several-inches-of-snow for several-feet-of-snow. It was a great few days away and felt like a bonus since we hadn't planned on it until just a bit ago.

This shot's funny because it looks like I photoshopped some suspicious fellow in, but I didn't. Instead it's just our good friend following a very snowy ride down the hill:
The sweet girl with very cold toesie-woesies (I didn't get any good ones of her sister, who was off shredding the steeper hills):




And for fun, here's the dynamic duo in a configuration we dubbed Double Trouble:

video

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Brrrrrrr

Eric, Shelley, Brice and Erica were over for a raclette lunch on Sunday--the perfect day for it. Their kids came prepared with snow shovels and all of their snow gear (unfortunately I didn't get a picture of Erica!) Brice was nice enough to play outside with the kids:


The kids have been begging to "go skiing," which for all they know consists of .5 second runs down 2 vertical feet. We're all excited for Bogus to open and for all of us to get better at this!


Thanksgiving


Keeping up with our once-a-month posting, here's the November update.
Last month the cousins came. Auntie Darci is a fabulous story teller (although you wouldn't know it from the kids' expressions in this particular shot!):


There was lots of baby-playing:


And we even got to celebrate Darci's birthday:
The beautiful Thanksgiving table with my mother-in-law's vintage dishes (and thanks to her decorating skill):


Four little pilgrims (or turkeys!):




Post-turkey snoozing:

Friday, December 12, 2008

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Halloween--a bit late

The kids did some costume-swapping and last-minute changes to end up as a witch and a Swiss soccer player:




Siena's class paraded through the entire school. She's in the back right corner:
Then that night we went up to a little Halloween party with some ghosts and goblins and geishas:
After a wild round of trick-or-treating on an amazingly warm night, this is what it looked like for the ride home:

Friday, October 24, 2008

freezer cooking/once-a-month cooking

Because I am strange, I decided to give this once-a-month cooking thing a whirl -- about a month ago. I tried it for the following reasons; 1) we were eating quesadillas for dinner more than once a week; 2) I was really tired of coming home in the evening and then rummaging through our refrigerator, trying to figure out what to cook. I've only done it one time, but we've *really* enjoyed it this month. I spent about 3 hours and made 12 meals. What I loved: we didn't have to spend time figuring out dinner when we got home and clean-up was also less. Works for me!

My tips for doing this:
1. Do the grocery shopping a day or two earlier--not on the same day you're going to do the cooking;
2. Have the kids entertained elsewhere so you can concentrate;
3. Make sure you have your supplies on hand, namely: Ziploc freezer bags (1 qt and 1 gallon), a sharpie pen, tinfoil, saran wrap.
4. Meat frozen in sauces doesn't dry out--it's amazing.

Recipes I used:
Bacon-wrapped chicken (very yummy!)
White sauce chicken with noodles (just okay--won't make this one again.)
Turkey enchiladas (very yummy--you could make any enchilada recipe)
Southwest chicken casserole (also just okay--I should know that we don't love casseroles!)
Thai pork (actually a slow cooker recipe--we ate it fresh but I'd make it again and freeze it. Also I used chicken because I forgot to buy enough pork)
Pork chops -- made these with the coarser Japanese bread crumbs. Very good!
Chicken and artichokes -- from my own recipes
Sausage pasta -- an old Cooking Light recipe

Useful books from our library:
The Freezer Cooking Manual--This book has great planning ideas, but mostly the recipes are too casserole-heavy. So, I'm hopeful for this one, which I'm waiting to check out:
Don't Panic, Dinner's in the Freezer

Goals for next month:
1. Healthier and fewer meat-based main courses
2. More soups for winter time
3. No casserole-like meals.

If you do this, let me know your tips! If you don't, give it a whirl. It'd be really fun to do it *with* someone!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

October

So late last month, the outlaws showed up and introduced a new game to the under-six set:


Yep. And they win, a lot, even playing face up. The grandparents left, and so now we're doomed to endless games of Uno...

They recently spent an evening trying on our shoes:


Siena's early literacy is taking off, and we are enjoying watching it. This is her sidewalk sign for Chocolate and Honey Ice Cream, of course:

This one's for the Swiss Miss, who passed on this darling suit:


From tonight: the fourth lost front tooth. I'm happy to pass on from Siena that the Tooth Fairy must have gps and a flying machine to get around at night:
And finally: we had a super fun package waiting for us this afternoon and I couldn't find the camera when the kids tore it open! We love the boxes from Sacramento. This one had Count Chocula cereal and some special Uno cards for the kids--a Peanuts edition. The fun continues!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Daniel's Birthday!

Guess who turned 21! It sure is fun to be able to share in a few of these occasions with the Swiss boys. Adrian, Audrey, and Daniel came over for hamburgers, and then we had a yummy chocolate pie that Audrey had made. The kids picked out very special presents for Daniel at the Dollar Store. It was nearly 90 again today and so we ate outside--a pretty lucky late-September treat. Oh, and the outlaws are here and we are all loving it!

Blowing out candles:



opening presents:

Chico memories

Two weekends ago, we went to Chico for Christina's funeral. It was a special, sobering, bittersweet day.

We rode over with Becky and Lana and stayed at Irv and Aleta's. Of course I didn't do anything as organized as actually take pictures of the nice people we stayed with, so here's one of the kids reading books at their place in the morning:


Saturday evening we had a mini-early 90's reunion at--where else--Burger Hut: