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Showing posts from November, 2009

The Whirlwind Weekend: Girlfriends, Pedicures, Vampires, and Lunch

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The weekend has finally ended. I have to admit, we need more Thursday holidays that are steeped in food traditions and gathering to be thankful. I vote for a quarterly Thanksgiving to keep us all grounded. Really to me the weekend was just epic. I started early in the week with some tea and conversation with a girlfriend in the evening. Sometimes it's nice to slip out of the house and have conversation at a coffee shop. We opted out of the meet for a drink because that's just our personality, we needed to vent, we needed warm drinks to fill us up. The chatting overflowed. Oh and there may have been a peppermint brownie involved. I was also fortunate enough to drag a friend along grocery shopping with me, Wednesday evening. Yes, the night before Thanksgiving someone was dear enough to join me at Whole Foods. Talk about that's what friends are for. She's a keeper.

After a wonderful low key Thanksgiving Day with my family, I snuck off with a girlfriend to see New Moon o…

Load Up The Family, We're Going To Staples!

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Earlier than usual my doorbell rang. The rumble of the delivery truck followed. My girls exclaimed, "a package, a package". We're big fans of early morning deliveries around here, unless it's something work related for my husband. But on this particular morning, an envelope was sitting on the landing of our porch.

The girls were disappointed to see me holding an express envelope. I opened the envelope and found a gift card to Staples.

I was anticipating this gift card to arrive at any time now. I was delighted. I had spent the last week, perusing the website, trying to hone in on what I would buy. After visiting the website a couple of times, I will admit, I was surprised by the selection of electronics and variety of items that Staples carries. Every week Staples offers new deals on their website. Cameras, printers, cell phone accessories, GPS, teaching supplies, computers, art supplies, and of course the essential supplies to keep my home running smoothly.

This …

Giving Thanks...

Colorado pulled out a warm 60 degrees today, a gift to us for Thanksgiving Day. J and I were sitting out back on the patio, watching the girls playing ball, swinging on the swings, and just being kids. Our girls play well together, which we never take for granted. J looks at me and said, "we have a family". It was cute. Sometimes you just have to take a moment and appreciate the wonderful way life unfolds.

When you've spent half of your life with someone, it's easy to just go through the motions.

Today we did the exact opposite. We relished the moments. Even though holidays are an opportunity to be surrounded by friends and family, this year we took a step back. We spent the day together, just the four of us, cooking and hanging out. J is dancing right now with the girls in the living room. If only I could record a moment of the screeching and laughter. Pure joy.

I'm thankful for so many things in my life. I'm thankful for the screeching pouring down the stai…

Wordless Wednesday: Gobble, Gobble...

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Craft idea compliments of Family Fun

Sunshine, A Caterpillar, and A Surprise Ending...

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One unseasonably warm and sunny afternoon, I was earlier than I anticipated to pick up my daughter from school. The commute is a bit of a crap shoot as far as traffic is concerned, so I tend to air on the cautious side. I decided to drive through Eldorado Canyon and take a walk with my youngest daughter, GL. I've been visiting this same trail for over 15 years. It's one of my favorites, a very soft approach, just a small incline, a hand built bridge that crosses a creek, and plenty of trees to provide a bit of reprieve from the sun.
Early afternoon sun is the favorite part of my day, it's the peak of the heat. Especially in October, afternoon sunshine in Colorado is something that just lures you in. The sun's rays whisper to you like a spoon dripping with honey, soak me up.
Vitamin D deficiency, not in Colorado.
As we were heading off towards the bridge, to hang our feet and watch the falling leaves cascade down the creek, I noticed something on the trail out of the co…

Happy Thanksgiving Break...

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Colorado Bento is on holiday! See you next week! Have a Wonderful Holiday!

Where Colorado Locals Go: Craving Authentic Country Style Japanese? Domo Restaurant

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Domo is a little oasis in a sea of random apartment buildings, a pothole filled street, and empty lots. To top it off it sits on a light rail line. There are excessive signs warning to not leave valuables in the car. I glanced over at my husband as we walked hand in hand with our daughters into Domo. I initially thought, interesting pick husband.
The front door is delightful carved wood, it feels out of place from the neighborhood. Just on the other side, an amazing experience awaits. The dining room chairs were all small stools made from tree trunks, little nooks are carved out in the walls to house Japanese items from hair combs to paper umbrellas. A table at the entry way of the dining room holds large chunks of ancient salt. The girls couldn't have been more intrigued waiting for our meal, I was right there with them. My eyes were on a journey to see what else I could discover.
To top off the lunch, just on the other side of a large door sits another gem that Domo offers, a gar…

Notes From A Tall Woman's Bathtub...

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Breaking tradition tonight, I am writing this post from my bathtub. No I don't have a laptop precariously perched on my lap. I have a clipboard, a ball point pen, and some recycled paper precariously perched on the edge of a water disaster. In case you were wondering, yes my tub is also brimming with as-hot-as-I-could-tolerate water and some bubbles. Or maybe lots of bubbles, but not Hollywood bubbles.
Right now I feel a bit like Rev. Run, communicating from my tub at the end of a long day. Except for these few simple facts; I am not a bald man, inspiring the world with quotes from my gorgeous tub in the master suite of my mansion, with some made for tv bubble product that makes bubbles that could rise to the ceiling if need be.
I am using the Body Shop's Spa Wisdom Dreamboat Milk Bath to create my bubbles. It has a wonderful floral fragrance. Years ago I was an At-Home consultant for the Body Shop and I still have random products kicking around. They don't go bad, right?

Wordless Wednesday: I wish I was eating...

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Quick Cinnamon Buns (no yeast required!)

Delight your company, this recipe is easy and fool proof!

1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted to grease pan

CINNAMON SUGAR FILLING: 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter, melted

BISCUIT DOUGH:

2-1/2 cups AP flour, plus flour for work surface
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1-1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 cup buttermilk
6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled ***see note

ICING:

2 tablespoons cream cheese softened
2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 cup confectioners sugar

1. Adjust oven rack to the upper middle position- preheat to 425. Pour 1 tablespoon of melted butter into a 9-inch non stick cake pan, brush to coat pan.

2. For Cinnamon Sugar Filling:
Combine sugars, spices, and salt in a small bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of the melted butter and stir with a fork until the mixture resembles wet sand, set aside.

3. For the Biscuit Dough:
Whisk the flour, sugar, baking …

Woah! What Happened Here?

Let me start off with, I've been using the blogger "dots" template since I started this blog. It gets the job done. I don't pull up my blog and think, wow gorgeous, but I am okay with that. I really love to play around with HTML. Right now I don't want to dramatically switch up my blog until I make the switch to my own domain (coming soon, I hope). Thanks to Blogger Tips and Tricks, I tweaked my stock template to a 3 column design. Now while I know it's best to have your posts to the left side for SEO and all that blah, blah, blah, I kept my posts in the middle. It just looked better that way.
One thing at a time really.
Then I had to resize my header, with out it being gargantuan! Which it has been in the past. I am hoping these quick HTML fixes will quell my desire to complete change my domain and blogging platform, until the new year.
Hope you like it!

Jumpstart Escape From Adventure Island Wii Game & Fantastic Giveaway!

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Jumpstart has come out with a new Wii game, called Escape From Adventure Island! I am a huge fan of Jumpstart products. My six year old daughter can manage her way around most Wii games fairly well, but Jumpstart games she can master. Quite often even with some of the games geared for her age, she runs into frustration easily. While realistically many game manufactures may envision parents sitting down and playing the game together with their kids, I like games that my daughter feels comfortable with on her own. Jumpstart Wii games always allow my daughter that independence.

Escape From Adventure Island of course comes with my daughter's two favorite activities, the fashion show and the house design program. As with most games, you can switch up your clothes, skin color, hair, outfits on your self created "Jumpee". With Adventure Island there is actually a fashion show stage! Escape From Adventure Island allows my daughter to learn while playing and I have to admit having…

Great Interview Experiment, Meet Me!

Emma from Where there's a Willer interviewed me. Was it revealing, was it what you already knew? You can find out here! Thanks Emma!

Great Interview Experiment, Meet Motherhood in NYC!

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Thanks to twitter, I have come to know many bloggers I read in a different way. Twitter allows a glimpse into small moments, which one may consider more intimate because an update typically hasn't been mulled over and edited like a regular blog post. Two writers that I really enjoy for their wit and sense of humor on twitter are Neilochka and MarinkaNYC.

Neil who writes, Citizen Of The Month, has created the Great Interview Experiment on his blog and this is my first year participating. Lucky for me, I was given Marinka aka Motherhood in NYC to interview.

Let the interview begin, for the record this is my first blog interview ever. I liked it, in a Chelsea Handler, not Barbara Walters kind of way...

Denise: I personally adore your sense of humor and always find myself laughing when I read your posts. Can you give us insight into how to find the humor in everyday situations?

Marinka: No, I'm sorry, that's a trade secret. But I think what I find humorous is exaggeration. M…

Vlog: Meetups, Blogging Conferences, Yes or No?

Happy 2nd Birthday, Maddie...

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Today is the day, a girl with the cheeriest smile and radiating blue eyes should have celebrated her 2nd birthday.

Today is the day, I will think about Heather and Mike incessantly.

Today is the day Maddie would be two, if she wasn't a star in the night sky watching over her family...

Happy Birthday Sweet Girl.

Please spread your love at Heather and Mike's websites today, they can use some loving. Writing about Maddie today? Please link up with AMomTwoBoys!

Meet Big Green Couch...

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This post is dedicated to my couch, my first real couch, that was purchased from the one and only American Furniture Warehouse. If you live in Colorado, you know AFW very well. If you don't, well just count your blessings. The owner Jake Jabs is a very charismatic man who likes wild animals to accompany him in a stream of never ending television commercials. But back to my couch. It as purchased seven years ago when we moved into our new home, our first home. When we purchased the couch, we went the route of AFW because it was affordable. It took hours to find something that had simple lines and plain fabrics.

Those simple lines in a sea of polyester southwest printed recliner lounging sectionals (as Jake ironically is modeling above), was a breath of fresh air. Heck, we even bought a matching oversized chair and ottoman to go with it. The sky was the limit at AFW. But let me end the wait, I'd like you to meet Big Green Couch.
Big green couch today is the kind that you almost …

Dynasty...

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Here we are yesterday at Warren Miller's Dynasty. The 60th year of ski movie magic.

Looking Back At Our Family Tradition: Warren Miller Style

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When I joke about my husband chasing snow, it's really not a joke. He actually does scour the ends of the earth searching for the best and freshest snow to capture on film, every year. Oh and when I say FILM, I mean real 16MM Kodak Film. He is an integral part of making the annual feature length ski movie for Warren Miller Entertainment. The long and short of it is, he started out as an intern over a decade ago and let's just say he's climbed the ladder over the years. The tradition has always been to have a Friends and Family show at the Boulder Theater on a Saturday afternoon. The friends that have joined us have come and gone, some have stayed, and our family has grown. I always look forward to seeing the familiar faces at the Friends and Family show. To my friends who make it out, thank you it means the world to us.

I was just looking back at the photos and thought I would share. 
Last year 2008, Warren Miller's Children of Winter. This photo was randomly taken by a …

Friday Confession: It's Gone Too Far, This Mom Needs A Vacuum

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I was sadly disappointed this morning when my girls woke me from a sound sleep. I immediately opened my eyes and felt grumpy. I wasn't upset because my girls woke me too early, I was well rested. The problem? I was in the middle of a dream, a wonderful dream. Believe it or not, it wasn't a beautiful dream involving anyone from England.
Rather, this dream involved my new vacuum. I was practically singing, heck there may have even been birds chirping, as I was trying out my new vacuum on my area rug. I recall joyfully listening to the sound of things being sucked up, proving how inferior my old vacuum was. I was so impressed by the power of my new home cleaning device. It was like a Dyson, but smaller. Maybe Dyson has a mini-version in the works? It had special settings for hard wood floors. It had an attachment with a dog brush on it, it sucked up the hair as you groomed. It barely made any noise, so Milo just sat delighted at his massage. Yes, it truly was a dream. 
Now I sit …

Dads Can Bento, Too?

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Our morning bento routine, usually skips my husband. A couple days a week, he does pack our daughter's lunch. But usually his style is more, wax bags thrown in the lunch box. He's not really into the art of getting everything to fit pretty in the bento. BTW, may I add, I am almost embarrassed publishing these posts. I've recently become enamored with some bento geniuses and I feel, well quite amateur. But it's me, maybe we'll have the honor of one day looking back at my start, to see how far I've come. That's what I am telling myself.

With that said, I am super proud of my husband's attempt this morning! Almond butter and jelly sandwich, Cabot vintage cheddar cheese and Back To Nature Crackers, a chopped up kiwi, and a little chocolate tucked in the side. I love it and I loved it even more that I didn't have to make it. Just kidding, but it is nice to have a break sometimes.

In the mean time, I was packing snack for the class instead. Chopping ten k…

Thursday 13: Ways Bloomberg Could've Spent the 100 Million Dollars...

Michael Bloomberg was re-elected for a third term as Mayor of NYC. The news headlines touted he spent 100 MILLION DOLLARS of his own money to finance his campaign. 100 MILLION DOLLARS. Say that again. Seems like a lot of dough to blow on an election. Many people mentioned the perk of using your own money is that no one bought him out by financing his campaign for their advancement.

But all I could think about is the state of our economy and how 100 MILLION DOLLARS would go a long way to help in so many different ways. Before I get to my list of ideas, I'd like to state some little facts I learned about Bloomberg when researching for this post.

Michael Bloomberg in 2008 made the top ten list of the wealthiest Americans. His place, eighth. Net worth, 16 BILLION dollars. So really 100 MILLION DOLLARS is like me going out and spending a thousand bucks. Gulp. In Bloomberg's defense, he is a well known philanthropist. He's given John Hopkins University 300 MILLION DOLLARS from 1…

Circa 1979: Once A Yankee Fan, Always a Yankee Fan

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The year was 1979. Gosh and to think, some of you weren't even born yet. It wasn't a memorable year for the Yankees, from what online stats tell me they finished fourth in the American League. But looking back at the roster, the names are forever imprinted in my mind. 
Graig Nettles, Willie Randolph
Bucky Dent, Lou Pinella, Reggie Jackson
It was the also year Thurmon Munson, the Yankees catcher, died in a small plane crash. 
Growing up in New York with three older brothers, I knew the time would come when I would don the Yankees Uniform. Oh how I waited in anticipation to put on the pin stripes. As you can see from my stick figure, I am sure that uniform would have still fit me well into the mid-80's. Looking back on the photo, my hair isn't too different today, I just have to pay for that color now. 
My father is "the" Yankee fan of the family, with of course my brothers following in his footsteps. If there was a soundtrack to my life, I swear it would have a Yan…

Peppercorn in Boulder: Bento Selection

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I stopped into Peppercorn on Pearl Street just a week ago to see what their current bento selection was. Here's a quick photo I took. It's kind of random, they were moving all their stock around on the floor and their bentos were actually on the floor! They are all from Japan and the price was about $22-$26 dollars each. I also picked up some Japanese cutters while I was there, it was a six pack of flowers and random shapes that are a bit sturdier then a regular cookie cutter. They have a thicker edge where you press down, to easily cut through harder vegetables and foods.



I thought maybe this would help some of you and save you the trip or encourage you to visit! The selection does have a nice variety that includes options for boys (which are harder to come by). This is where I purchased our panda bento, but they aren't currently stocking any. Click on photo to enlarge!

To Be Quite Honest, Part 2

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Recently I was tagged by Psych Mamma who has come out of hibernation on her blog. Maybe it's her passion about vaccines and H1N1 or maybe she just misses all the fun! Stop by and welcome her back. 
I've written 10 Honest Things about me, back in July, but I'm giving it another shot. There must be ten more honest things inside of me dying to come out. 
The Honest Scrap award is given by other bloggers who consider a blog’s content or design to be brilliant. The awardees must then post ten honest things about themselves and pass the award on to other bloggers who fit the bill – in other words, whose blog is brilliant.

1. My words are like my voice. I write how I would speak. I find no thrill in trying to be something I am not and I am just fine with my little corner of the blogosphere, make up or no make up.

2. Sometimes when I am in the thick of a mountain of laundry, I enjoy the break of doing a load of towels. Folding all rectangles into neat squares is somewhat refreshing to…

Realization From Halloween Night

Even though I posted about teachable moments yesterday, I had already written a post about the impact the senior citizens in my neighborhood had on me Halloween night. I am over at Rocky Mountain Moms Blog today, with the original post if you care to check it out, Remembering Our Seniors On Halloween Night.

Hot Bento: Quick & Easy Pantry Lunch; Mac N Cheese, Edamame, Canned Pears

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I will be the first to admit, that about once a week I don't have it in me to pack a beautiful fresh lunch. Some mornings, I need quick go-to items from my pantry to help me with lunch duty. Typically it's because I am out of fresh fruit or bread, turkey or almond butter. Usually there is an essential component missing from our refrigerator. So, I always make sure I have emergency pantry items on hand, for backup.  I don't mind making macaroni and cheese in the morning, it just takes about ten minutes. I buy Annie's by the case at Costco, so I always have mac 'n cheese on hand. While the pasta is cooking I can prepare the items to accompany my daugher's mac 'n cheese. Recently we tried edamame in her lunch, I only had the version in the shell (from the freezer section), so I shelled some, put it on tooth picks, and then tossed in a few extra in their shells. She loves to eat edamame out of the shell, so that was a treat to her! In the second cup, I had some …

Halloween, So Many Teachable Moments!

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Last night under the glow of the full moon, we set out Trick or Treating. I'd have to put myself in the fan of Halloween category. People really go either way with this holiday, but to be quite honest I think it's fun. As we went from house to house, I had a realization about the importance of Halloween in my neighborhood in particular, as we have many senior citizens living close by. It was really an opportunity for them to feel like a part of the community as a whole, not just looking at the world from behind their blinds. We took an extra moment or two to converse with many neighbors that live just a few blocks away, that live all by themselves. I could see by the smiles on their faces how delighted Halloween made them. 
Even though we aren't much into junk food in my house, we certainly do love chocolate. Many nights after dinner, we all share a square of dark chocolate as our post-dinner dessert, if I haven't baked anything. 
Last night, after arriving home from Tri…