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You're About to be Redirected to the New Home of Ground Control to Major Mom: 12/18/11 - 12/25/11

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Annual Holiday Open House...Cute Party Idea and Recipes to Share

Why invest in those complicated key-ring-like wine charms when you might have a house full of THESE?

I'd heard about it from one of the GeekMoms.  I can't remember whether it was on GeekMom itself, or one of the GeekMoms referencing another website with this idea.

I went through my kids' THOUSANDS of Silly Bandz and found some particularly fun ones that our guests would recognize.  Spongebob and Phineas and Ferb bands made it into the batch, along with some sports-themed ones.  Folks who had the wine got a laugh out of choosing what charm to put on their glasses from the 20-or-so I had set out.

Mr. Krabs from Spongebob.

Ferb from Phineas and Ferb.

Last night we had our annual holiday open house.  We've tried to do this every year...this year we almost DIDN'T do it because of Dave's back surgery recovery.  If you had asked in mid-November, the answer would have been a resounding NO.  We didn't even decide to proceed with it till after Thanksgiving.  So long as folks had about 2 weeks notice, right?

However, I think as time goes on over the years, planning for it gets easier and easier.  I set out the cookies that I'd made this week, and set out two fondue pots: one with cheese and one with chocolate.  Diced bread, fruits, veggies and pound cake all over.

I make something for my punchbowl each year too.  Last year it was a festive rum punch that was too sweet, IMHO.  This year I attempted homemade egg nog with spiced rum and I was impressed with the flavor and texture (and I was impressed with how quickly it was consumed).  I made a double batch based on Alton Brown's recipe, except with Myer's Spiced Rum instead of the bourbon recommended in the recipe.

I messed up by not taking pictures of my pretty punchbowl filled with egg nog.  So I found this picture to inspire you.
We also presented these incredible bacon-cream cheese wraps that we had tasted for the first time at someone else's holiday open house last year.  I followed the recipe linked above, except I baked them at 375F instead of 350F.  Wednesday night I hand-rolled 3 lbs. worth of bacon roll ups!  Not to gross folks out, but the bacon grease gets into the bread some and then toasts the bread up really nicely.  Yum!  Seems like a rather campy, 1950s-esque hor d'oeuvre idea, but they disappeared very quickly!

My bacon-roll-ups looked like these.  Photo by 

We had a nice time -- because it was rather close to the long holiday weekend, many of our friends were out of town, but that was okay.  As usual, I made too much food, and I'm convinced we now have more wine and beer than we started with, thanks to our guests bringing so much!  Thanks to everyone who could make it.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Holiday Piano Recital

Our boys after last night's holiday piano recital.  Their teacher is in the upper right...
Last night my boys had their holiday piano recital.  In Nebraska Jacob only had one recital per year (May), but their teacher here in Florida puts on a nice holiday recital also.  They will have a bigger one in May.

This time I brought a tripod to take the video, which helped things out in two ways:

  1. The video isn't wobbly at all.
  2. I could actually watch my sons play, instead of watching them through the viewfinder of the camera.
The boys' piano teacher likes to give a somewhat-elaborate introduction for each student, which I could cut from Timmy's but couldn't find a nice place to cut from Jacob's.  Miss Ashley is saying some nice things about Jacob and his playing, but if you want to skip ahead (and believe me, I'm not offended, Jacob starts playing at about 1:00 into the video).

Timmy's "Jingle Bells"

Jacob's "Jingle Bell Rock"

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Feels Like Just Six Months Ago I Was Doing This....

I've said it before and I'll say it again.

‎"I've never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure."

It came across my @BreakingNews Twitter feed this evening.  Before CNN, before FoxNews...Yahoo news had apprently caught it from Yonhap News Agency.

I did get a grin out of Korea Central News Agency apparently reporting that their "Dear Leader" died of fatigue on a train.  Um...okay!

Dave and I were in Seoul, S. Korea from May 1998 - June 2000 (me) and July 2000 (Dave).  We had a great time there, but you couldn't get complacent...every 3-4 months some sort of dialogue or action would remind us that there was real evil less than 100 km away.  We were in missile range if the poop really hit the fan.

So as I did for Bin Laden 6.5 months ago, I present to you my favorite song when an Axis of Evil leader passes away.

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