Monday, December 27, 2010

Sibling Rivalry

My always happy Avant Garde Gal when she was a baby.

This is not any kind of breaking news hidden in a post.

My husband and I are not currently planning, or making a baby as I type.

I swear.

That would require too much talent, and skill for me to be able to do both at one time.

My cheeky Dauntless Daughter when she was a baby.

However, we have not closed down the possibility of baby-making in the future, nor are we purposely promoting it to that end. Given that our girls were both born in September, when Christmas/New Years rolls around it seems to be when I am most fertile. So the topic happens to crop up. So the other day my hubby said that if (that's a big if... literally) we were to have another child, he'd want a girl. My ovaries *squealed* in delight.

Last night my 4YO DD and 6YO AGG had this dinner time conversation about a possible sibling.

DD: I don't want another baby.

AGG: I want another baby, so I can go "coochie coohie coo".

DD: I want to be the baby. I don't want another baby.

AGG: I want one! Don't you want to be a big sister?!?

DD: No! And Momma said we have to agree to have another baby, so that means we're not having another one.

ps. If we were to have another... it's pretty much guaranteed to be friggin' adorable. Just look at the track record.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Christmas to all!

...and you better be happy - or else!

...whine, whine...

...blah, blah...


We're really well-behaved...sort of... sometimes... well...

And now... as we do each year - some of our favorites from this year... or what we can vaguely recall from this year...

Dauntless Daughter, age 4
color: pink
movie: Tangled and Mickey Saves Santa
tv show: Ni Hao Kai-Lan
food: mac-n-cheese
game: Not Monopoly!!! (because AGG always wins) I like Candy Land
book: Olivia
song: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on the piano
What makes you laugh? Tickling!
What do you want to be when you grow up? A princess.

Avant Garde Gal, age 6
color: golden
movie: Horton Hears a Who! and The Grinch that Stole Christmas (original cartoon, true to Dr. Seuss)
tv show: Olivia
food: tap silog
game: Monopoly
book: Charlie and Lola
song: Away in a Manger on the piano
What makes you laugh? people making funny faces
What do you want to be when you grow up? A mommy

Queen Scarlett, age 33
color: anything bright and bold - mostly burgundy
movie: 500 Days of Summer
tv show: The Good Wife
food: chocolate croissant, ethnic and Ina Garten (not to eat with)
game: Taboo, Catchphrase
book: The Last Chinese Chef by Nicole Mones
song: Buble’s I just haven’t met you yet - it’s my ring tone
What makes you laugh? Clever, witty turns of phrase, and kid’s silly antics
What do you want to be when you grow up? a published author, or a maybe a day.

Phantom, age 36
color: green
movie: Saving Private Ryan
tv show: San Jose Sharks hockey
food: yummy food
game: Risk
book: Les Miserables
song: U2's One
What makes you laugh? DD and AGG
What do you want to be when you grow up? A Princess. Kidding. A Daddy. (DD whispers... "A Grandpa")

Wishing you a belly full of yummy food, a home filled with cozy warmth, banter with the people you love most, and hope in the bleakest cold of winter.

Oh, and plenty, bucket-loads, semi-trucks full of laughter.

Merry Christmas!!!


ps. I can't wait to open my stocking. I found a note written from my thoughtful AGG...and I can't wait to read it. She leaves love notes all the time for us. It makes me so happy.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Partying Kid-style

We love our piano teacher. The girls are playing silent night... slowly, but surely.

We had a preschool performance.

When it comes to sneakers... they always end up on the wrong foot. She's my Hawaiian girl, prefers to go without socks and only with sandals...even in the rain.

Note that every child is wearing a Santa hat, but mine. She didn't want it to cover her headband. Go individuality! My little one has plenty of her own verve.

We had an elementary pajama day performance. First graders rule!

They sang all manner of Christmas carols. Naturally, I was right there in the front row with my camera and my Flip.

Hey, if the kids get to wear pajamas all day, that means we all get to wear them. I am so tempted to learn how to get a national pajama day started. So tempted. Likely, I'll be too lazy in my pajamas to do anything.

We celebrated with a kid-Christmas-pajama-movie night-party. Why? Because they asked. (they saw the fun from book group...and wanted their own party) Also, I am obliging when it comes to parties. I love reasons to party...or no reason at all.

Unlike our last blow-out birthday extravaganza, I learned my lesson and limited the number of invitees. Also, since this was a spur of the moment party - the email invites went out Thursday evening (same night my book group met at my house), for a party that Saturday. The short notice also helped in limiting the number of attendees.

We had 8 kids total. Three for each of my girls.

There were Christmas crafts.

Christmas stories. My 6YO is reading Elf on the Shelf.

Christmas movies and munching.

Christmas goody bags.

And of course, taking turns jumping on the trampoline in the living room.


...and may we all see this wonderful Christmas season through the eyes of a child.

Pure, innocent and bright.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

December Book Group

I hosted my book group's December meeting last Thursday.

I thought it turned out so pretty and delicious, so I thought I'd share.

Mini-hot dogs with spicy BBQ sauce - because I like hot dogs and bbq sauce.

Cranberry goat cheese with savory crackers - I am in love with goat cheese.

Soppressata & goat cheese in puff pastry (Ina Garten) - Costco happened to be selling soppressata...and I substituted goat cheese for the gruyere.

Applesauce spice cupcakes w/roasted pear and apple sauce filling (Martha Stewart & Ina Garten) - the picture is in my happiness post from yesterday...

Eton Mess (Ina Garten) - this is my new fav dessert.

Easy Cranberry and Apple Cake (Ina Garten) - I made this for Thanksgiving and wanted a repeat.

My favorite books read from this year in book group include (5 out of 12):

Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shafer, Annie Barrows
The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle

All were a reread of books I've loved and still adore, except for two, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society. I love food, so the Animal, Veg book was rather fun, and The Guernsey book is so delightful. If you're a reader a writer... you'll adore it's pages, it's characters the writing.

If you're looking for a good book this Christmas season... I highly recommend all of the above. Of course I've read many more books than we've read for Book Group... and read many I've loved. That's what goodreads is for. Click on my button to the right and you can see what I've been crazy for. Any favorite reads on your end this year???

Christmas is only a few days away!!!!!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Happiness Post:: Post 10

Martha Stewart's Applesauce Spice Cupcakes with brown sugar cream cheese frosting, filled with Ina Garten's Roasted Pear and Apple Sauce. My life is complete.

I love Fall...and Christmas...and apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and all manner of pears just ooze festive for me. So, I love making the applesauce spice cupcakes, LOVE them. They are so moist and melt in my mouth with the frosting. The spices in the cupcake throw a little rave on my tongue. BUT, I love cupcakes with filling in them. I don't know why. I suppose I like knowing there's a special center waiting for me to meet it. Or maybe it keeps my taste buds from becoming bored. My tongue has ADD.

I'd been thinking about this filling idea for a while. What should I fill these cupcakes with? And I had tried (not very hard). I experimented with a canned applesauce and sweetened condensed milk concoction... it was, meh... and then I made Ina's Roasted Pear and Applesauce for my family one night and the light bulbs in my head all went off at the same time.

Oooohhhhhhh. It makes me so happy to bite into one of these cupcakes.

Wanna know the best part?

I have one sitting in my fridge waiting for me. *shiver*


Friday, December 17, 2010

Nutcracker Christmas in San Francisco

Last Saturday my daughters and my friend, Soccermom, who was also a roommate from my BYU college days, with her daughter scooted over to San Francisco for a magical time.

Yank Sing at the Rincon Center

We headed to my favorite dim sum place, Yank Sing. My daughters love dim sum and turns out, so does my friend and her daughter.

Yank Sing has the best Shanghai dumplings ... the best. I wish there were really good dim sum closer to me. Growing up in the Bay Area the delicious dim sum houses were all over the place, and great quality places. So much fun to take the family there on the weekends for a perfect brunch/lunch.

Then we entered the beautiful War Memorial Opera House for the Nutcracker. This is the first Nutcracker my girls have seen. Before we went I went to the library to check out some books so that they'd know the story. It made me so happy to see how much they liked it.

I was a little worried about my 4YO, as she is known as the wiggliest one in our family. I was tickled to glance over at her swaying to the music and then clapping and "whoo-hooing" after each number. My 6YO preferred the international dancing in the Sugar Plum fairy's court over the Snow Queen and King dance with the snowflakes. I can understand why.

The production was flawless. The set design, the beautiful way everything was brought together... simply breathtaking. I was so grateful to attend with my daughters. This is the second time I've seen The Nutcracker. I remember sitting in my first show and deciding that I wanted to make that a tradition for my family one day. It has come true!

55 Parc Wyndham

I had told the girls I had a surprise in store for them. The night before going to San Francisco, I talked to my hubby about spending an evening there, as they girls love hotels. He agreed and I kept mum about it until we pulled into the 55 Park Wyndham hotel in Union Square. The girls were happy. I love surprising them.

I am grateful to have had this little jaunt with my girls. They are full of personality, which can make it crazy at times, but I prefer personality over zombies any day. Zombies eat brains you know... heheh

We planned to have a quick bite at The Cheesecake Factory in Union Square (in the Macy's building). Boy were we mistaken. The wait was nearly 3 hours.

This is one of the few pictures we have together. Apparently I was brain dead and totally forgot to ask some passerby to take a group picture. Photo of the daughters.

After an hour of waiting, which we spent waiting to see Santa, I finally got it into my head to call for take out. I had discovered there was a take out line... but it was faster to just call. So in 20 minutes after ordering we were back in our hotel room, enjoying our meal.

Ho, ho, ho ho ho. It's SANTA!

I've discovered that in terms of my personality I am a firm experiencer. I like to attend shows, travel, taste different flavors, and be out and doing something. I'm not a big hoarder, or thing acquirer. Probably because I also don't like to dust. I'm not a sit and home homebody.

This is why I love experiencing life with my girls. The memories are priceless to me.

Saying goodbye...

ps. Today is PAJAMA day at the elementary school...and it's the LAST DAY OF SCHOOL THIS YEAR! Yipee! Also, I will be celebrating with the kids by wearing my pajamas all day. Oh yeah....