Tag Archives: family

Surreal America

When we got to my parents we were informed that we had to hurry to eat lunch so we could go wine tasting.

I like my family.

We live in my type of small town.

We’re in the middle of the Columbia Valley.  If you drink wine from Washington, it’s probably grown not too far from where my parents live.

We started with Terra Blanca

It’s a pretty facility.  If I wanted to spend an extra 10 or 20 grand on my wedding I’d totally have it there.  But I’m cheap.

We got a total Christmas card picture

And headed over to Kiona.  It’s one of the oldest wineries in the area.

It’s a pretty place

And they had snacks.  Love wineries with snacks.  Cheese, chocolate, crackers, CHEESECAKE.  Love.

Then Fidelitas, which was charging a tasting fee and crowded, so we just got this picture out front

I love this picture.  I’m pouting till the fiance lets me use it as our Save the Date picture.

At this point I was enjoying the wine to the point where I was saying “instead of a reception, after our wedding we’re going wine tasting” over and over.

I still stand by that idea.

We had a big ol’ family dinner

I had a steak with sauteed mushrooms, spinach and tomatoes with garlic (SO GOOD!), salad, and a twice backed potato.

For comparisons sake, here is Baby Brother’s plate

Meat and Potatoes.  All American.

I guess that salad weighed me down, cause this happened

Whoops.  Sorry about the chair mommy.

Then monster baby helped me check email

She adored the mac book.  She also loves olives (It is one of 4 words she can say:  mama, dada, ball, and olive.  All the words you need).  And makeup brushes.  She was jonesin pretty hard for my beer too.  She’s going to be just like her auntie!

End of the weekend tomorrow

Question:  eating with family-love it or not?  I adore it because my daddy makes amazing things.  Like the spinach and tomatoes and those twice baked potatoes (they had like 4 types of cheese!).


I don’t wanna!

Taught all day today!

Made myself eggnog coffee this morning

Had some toast with cream cheese, plus an unpictured apple for breakfast

And, awesomely came home from work to realize i never turned the oven off from making my toast.

One of these days I’m going to burn down the house.

I packed a lunch ahead of time, which means it was only a little pitiful

Cheese and whole grain ritz, yogurt with some agave and pumpkin pie spices, and granola.  Plus crack oranges.

We’re leaving for Thanksgiving tomorrow, and wanna know something?

So not excited.

I’ve never had thanksgiving anywhere but my parents house.  Like, NO WHERE else.  Not even down the street and still in my home town or anything.

And we’ve gotten emails from the fiance’s fam about food…. and it makes me less and less excited.

There’s Cool Whip on the menu.

And, um, deer?

And NO rutabagas

I’m kinda getting the vibe only veggies covered in stuff are being served (candied yams, green bean casserole).

I know I’m totally spoiled but I am pouting about the whole pumpkin pie being made from canned pumpkin (which, btw kids, isn’t pumpkin, it’s dickinson squash.  Google it and tell me if that looks like a pumpkin to you)

And no blackberry pie, made from berries we grew.

And I’m just bummed I’m not going out sock shopping with my family (And Sarah Palin stalking!)

And I’m getting this all out of my system now so I don’t spend the trip pouting 🙂

Anyone else wanna complain about the holidays?

Or tell me how they leave the oven on so that I feel like I’m not the only one?

We’re related

I’ll tell you guys more about my recent eats tomorrow.

But monster baby (aka my niece) was just here, and she’s cuter than me. Or my food.

She started our her morning with blueberries, yogurt, some Killer Bread, and a lollipop (that was for drumming, not eating of course unlike her auntie who had candy for breakfast)

She was unsure what to make of the camera

But, we are related, so she realized quickly that she should make faces

That’s the face that she makes when she’s surprised.  I’ve been told she does it after throwing things down the stairs. It’s also the same face I make in about 90% of pictures.  We’re related.

Baby brother has worked hard at teaching her to throw food when she’s done.  There’s yogurt on the floor I need to mop up now.

We took monster baby and her parents out to Fat City Cafe for some breakfast

She was skeptical.

But once allowed to smother herself in food be independent and feed herself, she got into it

There’s a chance I’m also happier when I don’t have to use utensils.  We won’t talk about it.

We then went to the Killer Breadquarters.  She was quite the fan.

Like me, my niece is a fan of the Good Seed

(She also shares my affinity for cardigans.  And stickers)

And she also reads her labels, just like me.

We went to Trader Joes to stock up on some basics

She and I have the same definition of “basics”.  Her parents cart was weirdly different.

I don’t know why no one thinks it’s adorable when I get distract in the store with a cart full of booze.

Sadly, after some trampoline jumping, playing with a “ba!  ba!” (That’d be a ball friends.  Took me a minute) she got back in the car with her mommy and daddy to go home.

Do you have any nieces or nephews?  (besides you baby brother.  I know you do.)


Saddest news EVER

The sad news I’ll get to in a minute… Trust me, it’s really sad.

Dinner last night was yummy

Chicken with lemon pepper that I put some salsa, sour cream, and cilantro on top off

The fiance said he hadn’t ever had chicken with just lemon pepper?  I’m fairly sure chicken with lemon pepper on a salad was a food group for me for years.

(Other former food groups include diet coke, americanos with an extra shot, microwave popcorn, and popsicles.)

Plus quinoa that had cilantro, garlic, corn, and black beans.  Quinoa + cilantro is an amazing match.

Well, pretty much everything is amazing with cilantro.  Let’s not kid ourselves

And a salad

We haven’t been eating salad lately.  And I think it correlates pretty well to eating a lot more dessert.  Need to be better on that.

I’m pretty sure that we have a ghost who eats pumpkin bread, as I keep finding these plates with crumbs

And I mean, that can’t be from me, right?

Breakfast involved double fisting

Coffee + smoothie.

Yeah, a smoothie in November.  My thermostat is set at 64 degrees.  I’m in a tank top.  I’m becoming one with the cold.

(spinach, yogurt, banana, sadddd freezer burned blueberries with create a nice cement like color)

And now the sad news.

Sarah Palin is having Thanksgiving in my home town


My brothers are going to find her at Fred Meyer on black friday and buy her half priced socks and be besties AND I WILL BE IN KANSAS.

Seriously, I am sad. Not like “oh man, the store is out of crack oranges” sad

No, this is “I had a box of girl scout cookies in the fridge for a month waiting to be opened because I’d given up junk food for lent and my sister in law got PMS-y and ate the whole box and now I get no Carmel Delights for an entire year” sad

When I found out I screamed at the fiance.  He thought I was really mad.  And when he heard what the problem was he laughed.


If my brothers see Sarah Palin without me he’s going to have to buy me a ticket to Alaska.

Don’t Fear Pumpkin!

I spent all afternoon attacking the bread.  To make sure it was good of course.  Didn’t want to disappoint the fiance.

Besides pumpkin bread I actually managed to eat other food last night.

Pretty roasted veggies

Pot roast

Served with mashed potatoes and gravy

My old roommate told me once that only old people like pot roast.  It’s pretty much the fiance’s favorite meal.  But he kinda is an old man sometimes, so maybe there is truth to that…

We busted out some quality wine

Kirkland Signature.  Heck yes.

And, of course, more pumpkin bread

My skills clearly lie more in eating and baking than in cutting.  You should see when I try and slice French bread.  It’s not pretty.

A few of you told me you’re scared to cook up pumpkin on your own.

I promise, if you can cook a squash, you can make your own pumpkin puree.

My mama grew up poor.  And poor in a family with 7 kids.  So I think I get a lot of my more frugal tendencies from her-shopping sales, coupons, and making things from scratch.  (And also knowing when it’s ok to use a mix!).  The basic mindset with doing out own pumpkin was we already bought the pumpkins for the jack-o-lanterns, so why not get thanksgiving pies out of them too?

All I did was chop up my jack-o-lantern into a couple pieces, and then cook it just like I would any other squash.  When it was soft, I scooped the flesh off the skin with a spoon, and then stuck it in the blender.  I had a little pumpkin and got about 4 cups out of it.  My family got a bit more:

It’s a good thing we like pie.

Per several requests, here is the recipe, but if you use canned pumpkin you might need to add some water-homemade tends to have a slightly higher water content.  Mine had a puddingish texture, if it seems too thick, it probably is.  And you can add chocolate chips too if you’re, you know,  makin’ it for a MAN

Mommy’s Pumpkin Bread

3 eggs
1 cup oil
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin
1 tsp vanilla

Mix altogether.  Add
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 cups flour

Beat about 2 minutes

Makes 2 loaf pans or one bundt pan.  Bake at 325 for about 1 hour and 10 minutes (bundt cake usually takes a little longer)
Done when a toothpick comes out clean

It’s pretty much the best stuff ever.

You can tell because I made it yesterday afternoon and both loaves are clearly missing parts

I don’t know how that happened at ALL.

Seatbelt Day

Have I ever mentioned how I can’t sleep in?

I woke up today at 5:45.  Awesome.

The fiance has the day off work (for angels and seatbelts day) so I made us breakfast.  I’ve found he wants to kill me a little less for waking him up if there’s bacon involved.


Healthy?  No.  But delicious.  And some days, that is all you need.

I left the skin on the potatoes, so that they’re full of vitamins.  I’m pretty sure this puts them on par, nutritionally, with a Green Monster.


I should also probably never become a nutritionist.

We hit up Sweden to get a pot rack for the kitchen.  And stopped for some sustenance mid-trip


(Seriously, if you go to IKEA, get food while you’re there.  Otherwise you get to the rugs and want to die because you’ve been there for 2 hours and you’re nowhere near done)

Turns out you don’t have to be a kid to get a kids meal!  Score

Penne and marinara






For $2.49.  Score.

Also, they use the bowls that I adore.

I had plans to work in the yard.

We got home just in time for it to start raining.

That, clearly, was Jesus letting me know I should play Mafia Wars instead.

(Minister should probably go in the no box for future careers too, huh?)


And, in real honor of Veteran’s Day, I thought I’d tell you about my Great Grandpa…

I come from a long line of stubborn people. On both sides of my family actually.

(I of course missed this and am perfect….)

My Great Grandpa very much wanted to be a part of the war effort when WW II hit.  He tried to enlist in Canada, and was told that he was too old.  (I’m not sure on his age, but my grandma, his daughter, was 21 when Pearl Harbor was attacked, so I’d guess he was in his 40s at least)

Now, being that he’s a part of my family, he wouldn’t take that no, and instead went down to Seattle, where he enlisted as a US Merchant Marine.  He died in the war, and is buried in the Phillippines.

So here’s to my stubborn great grandpa, and all the other veterans who gave their lives.


And of course to angels and seatbelts, who also keep us safe.

Best. Mommy. Ever.

I’ve kinda got the best mommy ever.  Now, I used “My mom is the best mom” as an example of a fact when teaching my 3rd graders about the difference between fact and opinion last year (which, awesomely, finally made it all click because they got the “oh.  you like your mom the best, and I like mine the best.  And neither of us is wrong.  An opinion is where you can think something different and no be wrong)

I didn’t want to break it to the kids, but my mommy is better.

I mean, she sent me this


Cookies, more cookies, candy, cookie cutters, a punching witch pen(!?),  a bear, and the Costco coupons (those are KEY in life).

Come on, did your mommy send you pumpkin AND candy corn flavored kisses?


I didn’t think so.

My mommy was well known for her care packages when I was in college-two of my friends got packages from her before they got any from their own parents!

I may have hid the box so the fiance didn’t see all the goodies were also to him.  There’s a chance.

After spoiling our dinner with sugar being adults and not eating candy before a meal we made dinner

Burrito (ground beef, beans, olives, onions, avocado)




No cookies were consumed after dinner.  Or any pie.  Gosh no.

I’m super tired today probably because I had candy for breakfast and I have no idea why.

Made a sorta random grab stuff out and throw it in a pot style lunch…


Couscous with some sorta lentil curry thing on top


Why is curry so good?

Why don’t I make it more?

I need to go shower and then I’m getting the fiance so we can close on our house!

Oh, and further proof that my mommy is great:

I told baby brother it was raining so hard that I was going to need an ark.  I just got an email from my mom saying “Braden said it’s Noah raining.  A word of advice:  when you load the ark DON’T take any woodpeckers”

Thanks mommy 🙂