30 November 2008

Christkindlmarket Chicago

An afternoon (or two) at the the Chirstkindlmarket in Chicago has been a tradition for us since it started in 1996. Despite the rain/snow, we headed down on the train for a nice afternoon (with few crowds due to the weather). We had Glühwein, bratwurst, potato pancakes, chocolate covered marshmallows and strawberries, and cinnamon almonds. And as they do every year, the kids got to pick out an ornament each. It's always so fun to see what they choose -- and this year, H selected a bell, and C a pine cone with a Santa face on it.

29 November 2008

Our Christmas Tree

The holiday season has officially started. Today we picked out our tree. This is our second year going to the Sandhill Christmas Tree lot. They are not cheap, but really, the most beautiful trees you'll find, in my opinion. (We've also gone to the Pioneer Tree Farm in the past. We came home with a pretty wimpy tree -- a drought a few years back has impacted their current stock -- but if you are looking for a chop-your-own-tree experience, I'd highly recommend it.) H & C were a big help decorating, and it's so fun watching the kids during this season. I'm glad it's here.

28 November 2008

First Snowmen of the Season

A Hike

We are back home from our Thanksgiving in Wisconsin. But before we left, we took a quick hike in Lapham Peak. I love this stuff, and it was absolutely perfect.

Why We Love Wisconsin

Thanksgiving 2008

We had a great Thanksgiving at my parent's house this year. It was fun spending time with family, and eating (a lot of) amazing food and drink. Unfortunately, C was sick, so he really was not himself. But he was a trooper and slept most of the day. We also didn't see H much -- he sat in front of the slot machine in the basement rec room the whole day. And, we ended the day with a friendly boxing match on the Wii. My sister pretty much creamed all of us, until my mom came and gave her a shot that knocked her socks off. It was pretty funny.

26 November 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

We are here! Spending the holiday with family. PFour sure does have much to be thankful for.

It Must Be Backwards Day

An Afternoon of Dance

H's 1st grade class, along with the 4th graders, have been working with the Hubbard Street Dance Company since the beginning of the school year on a project. Tuesday was their big performance -- an interpretation of "Where the Wild Things Are." I couldn't make it, but Brian was there, which just made H so proud. H had a great time, and received a number of compliments since this program started. As I was dropping H off to school one day, one of his dance teachers told me who she was, then said what a great student H was and that it was very fun to watch him because he comes up with some really interesting moves. Then last night, our neighbor who also has a 1st grader, said she was watching the show and noticed a little boy shake his groove thing -- and was shocked and impressed when she realized it was H.

Being that H IS a 1st grader who's reply to "how was your day?" is typically just "fine," we didn't know much about the program. But it sounds really cool. They worked in groups of four students -- two 1st graders, and two 4th graders. Together they came up with their own monster (the top image is H's group). They also kept journals and had a field trip to Hubbard Street Dance. I think H was very lucky to be part of this.

24 November 2008

Soaps on Etsy

UL ... S'mores by Savor
UR ... Banana Brulee by Naiad
LL ... Sweet Buttermilk Bath Soak and Warm Cinnamon Goat Milk Soap by Farmstead Organics
LR ... Ginger Lemongrass Salt Spa Bar by Sparta Soap

23 November 2008

Harvest Party

Our friends the Kralj's had us, along with some others, over for a Harvest Party today. It was a great afternoon -- exactly how Sundays should be, filled with food and friends.

Busy Morning

22 November 2008

Watching the Time

We made overripe banana souffles after dinner tonight (thanks Kari!). H & C got in the way helped. I could have used some finer sugar, but otherwise, yum!

20 November 2008

Almost There

Remember this? Here's where that little project is today. So much better, right? Actually, it's quite amazing, and I cannot wait for the first nice day to be able to hang out on the porch again ... even though it will be a long, long, loooong time away. We still need to tile it (too cold right now), and paint the inside white (again, too cold), but I had to show it off. It really turned out better than we could have hoped for. (Thanks to the the Elsmo Four for the referral.)

18 November 2008

Purses on Etsy

UL ... A Tough Ruffles Purse in Black with Charcoal (sold out, sorry) by Made by Hank
UR ... Truffle in Variegated Linen by Morelle
LL ... Brown Leather Antler Pouch by Bonspiel Creation
LR ... Origin Organic Coffee Sling Bag by The Wren

Dad's Home!

Brian just got home from a two-night trip to Colorado Springs. It was short, so not so bad, but we are so happy to have him home.

17 November 2008

Super Dog

Upon arriving home after work this evening, Storm ...

1) Brought me my slippers,

2) watched the kids (on the sofa) while I made dinner.
Isn't he the best?

Leaves are Everywhere

Our town is filled with trees -- and when Fall hits, leaves are everywhere. During this time, we just (I say just, but remember, we live on a corner ... with lots of trees) need to rake them into the street once a week and the village picks them up. Right in front of our house is a dumping ground until the garbage truck picks them up (same day). Here's the pile that was left today.

15 November 2008

Date Night

For the first time in five months, we got a babysitter and had date night (we really need to get out more -- alone). First stop was Marion Street Cheese Market, where we had a delicious meal and some great wine. Last stop, Lake Street Theater to see the new James Bond movie, Quantum of Solace. It was such a great night.

Target Shoes

Went to Target today. Picked up cleaning supplies, toiletries, and oh ya, these shoes. Also grabbed a couple of their basic long sleeve shirts for $8.99 each, which frankly, you cannot have enough of.

{11.18.08 Note: These are currently on sale at target.com for $13.99! Plus, they have plum -- which I probably would have ordered even though I love the yellow too -- brown and black}

Storm Turns Two Today

Happy 2nd Birthday Storm! Thanks for putting up with H & C. And for letting them jump on you. And pretend to ride you. Oh right -- and pull body parts they shouldn't. You are the best dog in the whole wide world. (Cake & cookie from Scratch N Sniff).

13 November 2008

Family Reading Night

I've mentioned before that when H started school, he was a little behind on reading. Between the extra classes he received (that he's no longer in) and the before school reading club (that he's still in because he likes it), he's progressed way beyond where he even needs to be. He is working so hard, and his school is just so great. Anyhow, back when he was in the extra classes, he was invited to participate in "Family Reading Night." He still wanted to do it, and his reading teacher said that was fine ... so tonight was the night. Despite some "stage fright" that he claimed to have, the children did great. And I was so impressed that among all these kindergartners and 1st grades, there were actually moments I could hear H's voice telling the story. It was a fun night.

Dreaming ...

of being in this wonderful space. I picture :: friends and family over for dinner ... often. Kids roller skating ... in the house. And dancing ... crazy, jumping around, dancing.

12 November 2008


Today celebrates the one-year anniversary of my blog -- this is my 298th post. Besides being a great way to document our lives, blogging has given me a chance to step back, and simply appreciate the great life we have together. (I have to say, it's a pretty good one. We are very lucky.)

I'm also excited to announce that I started another blog. (I know ... crazy). It's called Peas 4 Dinner and basically is a celebration of family dining. As I say on Peas 4 Dinner, it won't be for everyone -- because frankly, you just might not care what we ate for dinner. That's totally fine. Just keep on reading this one, which will continue to be my main site. But I thought it could be fun and interesting to try. It's just one simple photo, our menu, and links to recipes if available. So far it's been fun. I just hope I don't annoy my family too much. But then again, they may be getting used to it.

Thanks, everyone, for following our journey.

11 November 2008

Thinking Big

C was very busy building giant, taller than him, Lego towers tonight.

Etsy Pottery v2

UL ... Seven Deadly Sins (sold out, sorry) by Trixie Delicious
UR ... The Four Seasons Cups by Bailey Doesn't Bark
LL ... Sparrow Sugar and Creamer Set by Just Mare
LR ... French Dish by Rae Dunn

10 November 2008

Snowmen by C

Someone's getting ready for winter! Every morning C made snowmen at school. Here's just a few -- but believe me, they came in all sizes and this was just the tip of the iceberg.

08 November 2008

Perfect Saturday Night

P.S. Dear Santa -- do you see that hole in my slipper? I really need a new pair for this winter season. It was only 38 degrees here today. Burr.

H Had a Problem Getting Dressed This Morning

07 November 2008

Right Outside our Windows

Yesterday ... today the trees are bare. And our sidewalks are covered.