Saturday, December 31, 2011

Kiss last year goodbye.

I still can't quite believe it's New Year's Eve, 2011 already, can you?

You know I am a fanatical baker. This week I finished up my holiday baking by doing cookies and dipped pretzels for the neighbors and a few more friends. (I ran out of treats and time last week to include them all.) I stuck with my white theme, but changed the theme of my tags to New Year's.

Speaking of New Year's Eve..what will you be doing tonight?

We will be out of town with my Rock n' Roll Buddy's sis and her hubbs, and we'll be listening to one of the best local bands around... Do you ring in the new and celebrate the old, or do you call it a night early? 
Whatever you are doing, I wish you a wonderful and prosperous twenty twelve, filled with everything your heart might desire.

One last lil peek at Christmas....

I wanted to share a few more pictures of Carter and Coen's home from Christmas eve...

 Their stockings were hung....

 The tree was trimmed, and waiting for Santa...
The table was beautiful....

It was a wonderful Christmas...and a wonderful year, as I look back on it!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My favorite Martian.

**We had a very Merry Christmas 'round here, and I hope yours was wonderful too, but that's so not the theme of my post-holiday-blogpost today...**

So, I am aware that I may have already lost some of you with my title and the photo above.(and by "some of you" I mean everyone under the age of 35. If you're confused, you can get up to speed right here.)

You know how that guy wrote that book about women being from Venus and Men from Mars? Well, okay, so I never actually read it myself, but I am fairly certain the concept is that women are all about thinking (over-thinking?) our hearts (hence the Venus, Goddess of Love reference) and men are...well, I have no real idea (maybe I should have read the book?)except that I think they are much more basic, and logical,(or maybe that should be illogical...) although not any less complex to women. 

They are most definitely not as touchy-feely-heart-on-our-sleeve-ish as we girls are. (Apparently that is where the Mars reference comes in. They are Martians, for Pete's sakes. It's no small wonder we have trouble communicating with them.)


I have been pondering all of this lately because I am realizing that I am rather a novice level girl in the boy-girl communication department when it comes to getting my thoughts across to my Rock n' Roll Buddy. Maybe it comes from not having a long list of men on my relationships list, and having spent multiple decades with one

That other Martian and I developed our own way of showing our feelings and communicating in a particular way that became familiar...a habit.

For. Three. Decades.

Then, I spent five years solo. I didn't realize it, but I grew fairly comfortable with making my own decisions, both the itty-bitty-little ones and the ginormous ones.

Take all that into account, and add the fact that I am..well, let's just say it, fif-fif-fifty five. We are both older, and  more set in our ways wiser, and finding a way to blend our material belongings (while trying to figure out which of the other person's items hold sentimental value to them...) along with discovering ways of communicating our opinions (along with two cents on definite home-decor ideas from both parties) without injuring anyone's heart, become a rather delicate task.

For five years,I didn't have to ask anyone if they liked the giant vintage firewood holder I  ran out and bought for the living room. I just went with my gut. 

And now,....well,I get on auto pilot, like we all do on Venus, and assume just how my Rock n' Roll Buddy will respond, (Que in background music and pan in to Tracey-ville, USA, with Ward Clever smiling in lustful admiration at June as she shows him the fabulous wood holder, making his life oh-so-complete.)I assume he will appreciate certain things I do and say in the same manner that the other Martian did for thirty some years.(I came to this incorrect conclusion by the way, by surmising that, after all, they are both Martians, right?)

Only, that isn't what happens.

His response is...different than I was accustomed to way back when. Different than I expect. (Typical Martian....)


Me, being from Venus, with all of my romantic notions,(mmm hmmm,very clearly a Venus girl all the way, what with serving him his heated syrup in a sweet lil' pour-cup for pancakes, and having lil' felted wool birdies in snow hats adorn our winter-time table scape...)while he, quite obviously has to be from Mars.(How else can you explain the need to keep two working microwave ovens in the same kitchen, and three cordless drills in the garage?) 

I feel very much like I am trying to master a foreign language of some sort. There is a learning curve in blending personalities and belongings from two such different planets, and I am grasping little pieces of wisdom....most importantly, I can tell you that he is definitely my favorite Martian. 

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas at Mr. and Mrs. Big Dog's home.

While I was at the newlywed's home yesterday doing some marathon gift wrapping, I remembered my camera and got a few pictures to share with you of some of their wonderful holiday decorating...
When you first enter through the front door, you are greeted by not one, but two beautiful, real, fresh cut trees within eye range. One in the living room, and one in the corner of the dining room.
There are plenty of eye candy details all the living room...

the dinging room... the kitchen too...

A live potted tree in the master...they plan on getting a live one each year to plant in their huge yard.
....And even the guest room boasts a tree, and lots of lil' sweet details....

You can't help but feel the Christmas spirit here...Merry Christmas eve, everyone! Hope you are having a wonderful holiday, shared with the people you love.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Sharing the holiday spirit.

Last night I wrapped up my first round of baking, and packaged up some cookies for my Rock n' Roll Buddy to take into work. Hmmm, for some reason, this basket of treats photographed small looking. It's actually a nice big tray of cookies!!
I stopped by GoodWill on my way home to see if I might find a cute container or two to package up the baked goods, and I struck gold. 
I found a set of six matching little buckets for $2.99...exactly enough buckets to make lil' presents for my department friends at work! 

I filled each bucket with shred, and cookies, and added a sweet little tag that I created on my computer, and candy cane striped ribbon. Today we are going out for a holiday luncheon and these are going to make charming little gifties for each of them!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

"Coz nothin' says lovin' like somethin' from the oven.

Thank you, thank you, thank you so much for all the comments on yesterday's post! I brought home a pitcher of roses from the wedding!...and I smile each time I look at them. I don't think I will ever be able to be that surprised again in my life time. Such a thrilling, fun feeling!(Click here to see MORE pictures...from the photographer!)


I spent Sunday afternoon baking in the kitchen while my Rock n' Roll Buddy held band practice in the living room. I'll be giving out my goodies to neighbors, and friends...
I went with a white Christmas baking theme for the most part this year. I'll add ribbon wrapped milk bones for my neighbors next door that have pups.....
.....I stuck with my old stand by, favorite recipes...snowballs, and star shaped sugar cookies......

I also dipped pretzels in white chocolate and sprinkles for more added frosty white bling.
So pretty and so yummy! What about you? Do you go with a theme (snowmen? Stars? Red and Green?) when baking for the holidays?

Monday, December 19, 2011

Oh, how I LOVE a surprise!

Ohmygoshohmygoshohmygoshohmygosh!!!! I..we... had the most fabulous surprise this weekend!

I shared a while back that my first born daughter had gotten engaged. Well....since then, no date for the wedding had been set, and all kinds of ideas had been tossed around; a destination wedding, a quiet trip to the courthouse with a party afterwards, a planned elopement...but no date set and no progress on the plans. Trust me, I threw out all sorts of suggestions, and themes (a Christmas wedding? New Years Eve? How about something in a barn? A fabulous dinner after watching them burst out of the courthouse?) and even began gathering pictures for ideas on my Pinterest board...(you know how I love a project, right?)


We were invited to Multnomah Falls Lodge for a dinner to meet my daughter's future in-laws, who are visiting for the holiday's from out of town.

I had seen an idea on Pinterest for little cards for the table to use as an ice-breaker of know, a conversation starter. I ran the idea by the happy couple and then whipped them up. I popped the cards in my purse and we headed to the falls.

Little did we know, but once inside the charming room upstairs in the Lodge, the dinner was not just a was a surprise wedding! Not a detail was forgotten, with both of my girls planning and plotting and organizing....Old silver pitchers and canning jars from home filled with white roses adorned the tables in the banquet room. There were favors of mittens and scarves for everyone to wear as we were escorted outside to a spot near the falls. We were given cups of hot cider and cocoa along for the chilly walk.

The happy couple were decked out in their wedding attire, and my daughter had the most incredible overcoat (from Anthropologie!) that was cut slightly higher in the front, and showed off the bottom of her vintage reproduction dress....breathtaking!
We took our seats and witnessed their vows...(The little men were entertained with raisins...)
...then we all returned to the upstairs room in the Lodge for a wonderful wedding dinner and cake. My pictures came out terrible due to some screw-ball adjustments I made to the shutter speed or something or other. (Sheesh...) Thank goodness the professional shots should be here within a week or so and I can share more then.

I am still smiling as I remember the complete and total surprise upon realizing we'd all been tricked (some were told it was a charity event, others a dinner, and who knows what all else!) and what a spectacular day it was.

edited at 4:00 PM to add: here's a link of just some of the pictures from the photographer!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Here comes good ol' Santa Claus....

I don't recall sharing anything about my co-worker friend Clarence. 

Clarence is 80 years young and proud of it. For most of the year, he's our sweet lil' mailroom guy, but come December things start to change. He grows his beard a bit longer and fuller, and he gets out his nice red suit.
Mmm hmmm, he's our very own in-house Santa! Last Thursday and Friday he and Mrs. Claus (another good sport-co-worker friend) sat and listened to countess wish lists from kids (and Grand-kids!) of employees...(Have I mentioned that I love where I work?)
Carter was a little shy this year, but managed to sit on Santa's lap and have a lil' chit-chat, but Coen wanted no part of Old St. Nick. Now, Mrs. Claus was another story....(I'm telling you, this little guy is totally a ladies man!)

...Hard to believe Christmas will be here in just one more week!

Monday, December 12, 2011

All in the family.

For my birthday last week, (Good Gawd, I am "double nickels" as my friend Dona denying it now. I have to say "mid-fifties"...)my kids gave me something I will treasure always...they had a photo shoot arranged last time my son, daughter-in-law, and other grand babies were up visiting from the biggest little city!

There are some darling shots of the grands together....

...and some alone...

...and some wonderful pictures of my entire brood as it is now...

I couldn't have hoped for a better present from all of them!
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