Monday, December 31, 2012


The Christmas festivities have ended for 2012 (and we are all still miraculously here on Earth! No pole shifts or anything!), although I refuse to take down decorations until mid-January. We had a pretty good holiday up in New Jersey, spending time with the McEwans, playing games, making a lot of food, and even doing a little furniture making! Deb, Bill's twin's wife (whoa), is pregnant and the McEwan clan was working hard over the holidays to make her baby safe with some new radiator covers and a changing table! I was pretty impressed by the boys' handiwork (but obviously not enough to take a picture of it so we are picture-less).

Anyway, it was a pretty successful holiday week and I feel quite refreshed getting away from it all for over a week and not having to think about work, school or household chores!

But on to the pictures....

The Christmas setup 

Trying to get into photo-ready positions... and failing terribly, as Jon's face shows. 

Ok, that's better. 


Not so typical, but looking good! This is the annual McEwan family portrait. 

Sam and I snuggle up for the unwrapping

Oh no! You caught me mid un-wrap! 

Must be something exciting in there! 

Look how pretty Lissy looks in purple! 

Yea! A drain cleaner! Haha. 

You can tell Mike gets pretty excited by his presents

Bill got a monthly coffee subscription! 

Did I mention we had a White Christmas??

It actually got very white, with a blizzard on the last day! 

Stay tuned for a winter wedding recap, best of 2012 and NYE pics! 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas on Woodstock Street

Today we had an early Christmas on Woodstock St. before heading to northern New Jersey for the week with Bill's parents. We had a Christmas brunch (the "traditional" one I grew up with) and unwrapped a few presents from one another early, you know, cause the world might end today!

In case the world doesn't end in the next 7 hours and you get to read this post in a non-apocalyptic setting, we thought you might enjoy a little festive Christmas cheer.

A few weeks ago, after coming home from Chicago, I opened the door to a freshly cut tree! I've never had a real tree before! And this is our first tree together. So lets just say it was a lot of fun... 

And stuffing presents under it was all the more fun! 

But brunch this morning was maybe the best. We even successfully converted my mom's Swedish pancake recipe to a gluten-free one! 

Stay tuned for more Christmas and some present unwrapping! 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Very Belated Thanksgiving

I'm back! For the last three months I have been working towards my real estate license with late night classes in New Jersey and as of last Thursday night, I graduated! Woot!

So now I have my nights back  - at least until I start using them to show people houses ;-)

Until then, I think we have some catching up to do. First, lets discuss Thanksgiving....

It was yummy. And fun. Despite these cuties...

Who I want to just bury my face into when I see them but my throat would probably close up, so... 

Anyway, this year we actually stuck pretty close to home, though we did eat out once or twice and went to see Lincoln. 

The rest of the time was spent doing this... 

Yep, shooting in the backyard. Believe it or not, my family isn't hickie and their necks aren't red but about a year ago the raccoon started taking over our farm and "bullying" the cats so it was time to finally take action after a 20+ year war my mom has had with these masked critters. 

Apparently my dad has gotten pretty damn good with this thing. So Bill decided to check it out too. I think he was living out his James Bond fantasy. He probably would have gone out there in a tux if no one was watching. 

But the two of them spent quite a while back there shooting at a prepared target. 

Even I tried it... 

Despite my pose, I was no Charlie's Angel. I couldn't stop shaking and the whole thing was pretty scary. This was about ten times scarier than shooting a shot gun. Something about all that power being in your little, un-muscular hands that seems, ummm, icky. So needless to say, I didn't fire many shots. 


We also took several walks in the woods and a trail down the road that used to be railroad tracks. That meant we had plenty of time and resources to collect fun, natural elements for our Thanksgiving table. 

(Ok, so the microwave isn't very natural... )

But, more importantly, lets talk about what we put on (and quickly took off ) that table.... 

A perfectly-browned turkey

A less than perfect-looking, but pretty perfect-tasting, pumpkin pie

Sweet potato casserole with marshmallows! 

Fresh cranberries with orange peel

My mom even made me gluten-free stuffing! It was a cornmeal-based stuffing that was actually pretty tasty, though nothing like her amazing recipe sitting to the right. 

And then we ate. A lot. What's new?

Even this one wanted in on the meal...

(Please, sir, can I have sa more?) 

But at least the boys worked it off. My dad bought a new motorcycle and the two of them spent a good portion of the trip working on it. Bill was pretty happy to 1) not have to go through another antique store adventure and 2) be working on something mechanical. I think they had fun. 

And that's that! Stay tuned for Christmas decor pics!