Thursday, December 31, 2015

Post Cards from Utah

Remember how I said my boys went to Utah for Christmas Holiday?  They had a blast!  We were a little worried as Roman declared a couple days before departing that skiing was torture and he was not going to try!  My husband was sweating bullets, but we came up with a good game plan and it worked.  We decided that he would take Roman up the slope and introduce him the instructors a day before going.  If he didn't go then one of the boys could watch him or we have plenty of friends in the Salt Lake Valley who would be happy to help us out by watching Roman.  When push came to shove Roman did it and even graduated to the next class.  While in Salt Lake the boys not only went skiing, but they went to see the movie Star Wars and Creed.  They went to see the Tabernacle Choir perform. Hung out at Temple Square and saw the Christmas lights.  My husband said they missed us, but truth be told I think they enjoyed it being a "Boys" trip.  The boys are home now and the girls are off!   Can't believe 2016 is almost here!  Wherever the New Years finds you, May you have a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 28, 2015

A Dinner Fit for a King

Pineapple Pork Roast

1 4 pound pork roast
8 cups of water
2 teaspoons of salt
1/2 cup of brown sugar.
Place roast in a pot and cover with water, brown sugar, and salt and brine for 8-48 hours.  When done remove from pot, drain water, and pat roast dry.

1 fresh pineapple chopped
1/4 cup of grainy mustard
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1/2 cup of brown sugar

brown each side of the roast in olive oil, then cover with mustard, brown sugar, and pineapple.  Place in the oven at 425 degrees and cook for 15 minutes then lower the temp to 350 degree and bake for another 40 minutes.    Let stand for 10 minutes and serve.

I served this meal with hand held apple pies, salad, warm rolls,  and potato gratin.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas Eve

Someone was so excited for Santa to come that she could not sleep.
She finally crashed around 11 p.m.

It was so cute!  On Christmas Eve we went to Church for a special Christmas program.  Before we went I told Addy we were going to go to a birthday party for Jesus and she asked me if there would be goody bags.  I told her no and that Jesus was the gift. 

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Reindeer Games

Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer had a very shiny nose and 
if  you ever saw it you would even say it glows.

I know Christmas is over, but I thought this little video was too darling not to share!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Snowballs on a Rainy Day

It is raining here in Atlanta, and in Salt Lake where my boys are it is snowing so hard that they couldn't go skiing today though they should be able to head up the slope tomorrow morning.  It is totally crazy, but we are expected to have 76 degree for the next couple of days.  So not normal for this time of year, but I am not complaining.  Since we couldn't go to Utah with the boys, we made our own snowballs.  After we made the cookies, I headed into the city to have lunch with my friend Simona, her father, and his girlfriend Olga.  We ate at Bistro Niko.  The decor was a delight and the food was fantastic! The mussels are some of the best in the city.  I had a salad  nicoise.  Which was lovely and then I couldn't leave without trying something from the dessert menu.  I had the Tarte Pommes.  The pastry was light and crisp the apples were tart and thinly sliced and drizzled on top was warm caramel sauce the top adorned with a small ball of vanilla bean ice cream.  I don't know why I didn't take any pictures. Now the girls and I are getting ready to snuggle up and watch some Christmas movies. I have a pot of Tuscan Bean soup on the stove and a loaf of bread ready to go for dinner.  Life couldn't be any better!

Snow Ball Cookies
2 sticks of softened butter
1/2 cup of powder sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 1/4 cups of flour
1/4 teaspoon of salt
additional powder sugar for rolling the balls in.
In a bowl cream butter and sugar together than add vanilla the slowly add in the flour and salt.  Once mixed form into balls and place balls on a parchment lined cookie sheet or silicon mat.  Bake at 400 degrees for around 12 minutes.  Balls should be golden brown on the bottom.  Immediately roll ball in the powder sugar.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Season

Hi!  How are you?  Have you been just as busy as I have been?  On Saturday morning I said goodbye to my boys.  They are now in Utah enjoying some of the best snow.  They will be there until the end of the month.  I know you are probably wondering if the girls and I are going to join them and the answer is no.  We celebrated Christmas on Thursday.  The children went to school like normal, but when they got home Santa had come to our house.  We ate a feast fit for a king and then just like every year Frank read the Christmas story.  Afterwards, we opened gifts.  It was perfect!  I am thinking we should do it this way every year.  It sure beats the children waking up at the crack of dawn so they can rush downstairs to open gifts.  Why didn't we just all go to Utah or why didn't the boys just wait to go to Utah after Christmas?  When we were planning the trip to Utah we knew we wanted to go before Christmas because the slopes are not as crowded and with living on the east coast you always need a day or two to acclimate to the higher elevation. We made the decision for the girls and I to stay home because the girls don't ski and it just didn't make sense to fly us out there just to sit in a hotel.  I suppose I could have gone and taken the girls to visit friends as we have a lot of friends both in and out of the adoptive community; however, it is a huge expense to just go out and see friends and with going to Germany this summer we decided to save the money for that trip.  My mother and father are coming over on Christmas day along with some friends who have no place to go.  My uncle may come in the evening with his girls for some dessert. We won't be alone!

In other news, I was invited to a party last week that was so much fun.  It was called These Are a Few of My Favorite Things.  Each person brings something they adore and brings enough of that items to share with others.  I made peppermint bark pretzel sticks.  Another attendant made bath salts infused with lavender oil. Another friend brought 3 of her favorite herbal teas for each of us to try. Besides walking away with a bag full of fun things, it was fun to hang out with my friends.   

On Saturday night, the girls and I were invited to a friends farm where she organized a live nativity play followed by a Christmas sing along.  The girls had a good time sitting around the camp fire and drinking hot cocoa, but didn't really get the concept of being quiet during the performance.  Glad I didn't try to take them to the Nutcracker this year. 

How have you been celebrating this holiday season?  

Luke 2:16
"And they came with haste, and found Mary, 
and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger."

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

A Salad Fit for Christmas Dinner

This year I am changing up our Christmas menu!  While tradition is nice, this year I am departing from our traditional Christmas dinner and we are going to try a few new recipes.  Normally, we have a large ham, rolls, mashed potatoes, corn, macaroni salad ( my mom's contribution), and  a few dessert. This year we are going to going to have a pork roast with a pineapple glaze, potato and leek gratin, salad, my mom's macaroni salad, dessert.  How about you?  Do you eat the same menu year after year or do you change it up each year?

Boston Bibb Salad with Pomegranates, and Orange

One large head of Bibb Lettuce
1 head of Bibb lettuce
1 cup of pomegranate
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 of a slice red oinon.
1/4 cup of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
2 Sliced medium oranges

In a mixing bowl combine oil, vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste.   Mewanwhile, lay out ingredients on a plate and pour dressing over the top!  Eat!  Happy Holildays

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Traditions "Corner View"

Corner View started with Jane  in Spain and what a wonderful vision she had of  bringing together a collection of people from all over the globe. Each week we shared what was taking place in our corner of the world loosely based on a theme. I think at one point we had 72 participants!  In that time, babies were born, degrees were completed, children grew up, and sadly there was a death of a spouse. In a way we became a little family, and when Jane decided to move on Francesca graciously hosted our little group each week for many years until I took over in September. I hate to say this, but I think Corner View has run it's course.  Heather was planning on taking over in January when she is finished with school, but it seems many in the group have moved on.  It is only natural.  The group has had a great run and if one can go so far to say friendships have been made with people we have never met. Unless I am wrong than please let me know if you want to continue on with Corner View and Heather will continue to host for us come the New Year; however, while I will continue to post the next couple of weeks I am going to be traveling and so this may or may not be the last Corner View.  So with that being said, here is this weeks post. While the Christmas season usually begins the day after Thanksgiving for me I don't consider the season really starting until the second weekend in December when the kids have their German School Christmas program.  Our children have attended the German School of Atlanta for now 12 years.  Seeing the little ones on the stage is so so sweet.

Froh Weinachten!

Please leave your link in the comment section and we will come visit!  Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Last Minute Gift Ideas

Are you having a hard time finding the perfect gift? I know it is so hard finding gifts for those we love in a world where everyone has so much. Here are a few ideas based on gift that were purchased for members of my family. Thankfully, they don't read my blog, so it is Ok to share my ideas here with you! 13 days until Christmas! Are you ready?

While this book is a little mature for my 4 years old, I bought it any way as it is hard to find books with Chinese characters in them.  The illustrations are beautiful!
What 8 year old doesn't love Legos?  This set is going to offer hours of entertainment for my son Roman.  He loves Lego's!

We love playing games!  I haven't played this one, but it gets fantastic reviews!  A game for the whole family!

A little something special for the leading ladies in your life!  I just adore this gold pendant!

My sons loves Soccer and loves videos Games!  A win -win in my book!

Does your man like to read like mine!  I love love Brandon's post on Facebook, but my man is not on facebook.  This book brings back the humanity in the human race!

A blurb photo book made from photos of your loved ones for the grandparents!

Do you have an NBA team in your area!  Often times they have family packs! 
 Great for the sports fan in your family!

We have budding artist in are family.  These twig colored pencils are going to be a big hit!

Last but not least my children loved the Minion movie!

Happy Holidays!