Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year 2010!

We had fun night here at party central! The girls and I dressed up in our fancy dresses, did hair, makeup and even wore high heels! I made a bunch of appetizers for dinner, mini calzones, mini quiches, crackers and brie, little ramkins with dip and carrots and cucumber spears in them. We toasted in the new year with apple juice in our champagne flutes. The girls especially loved that part!

We decided to do the countdown at 8:30 so I could put Ava Marie to bed. The girls finished watching the movie Babe and then were in bed by 9pm! I am here at my computer with a cup of tea and some extra time to just wander the blogs tonight! Bliss!

Happy New Year to you all!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


We woke up early this morning to see if the weather forecasters had been right or wrong about the weather. 2 of the main channels had said we would only get a trace of snow, but 1 channel was closer saying we would get about 2 inches. We did get 2 inches overnight, but then it proceeded to snow most of the day and so now we have about 4 more inches. It has been super cold so the snow from Christmas Eve and Day is still on the ground and now with todays snow...well I think this is how it must feel to live in Chicago or even Michigan! And we are supposed to get more over the weekend!

So Monday I put the remains of our Sunday turkey into a big soup pot and boiled it with a couple of carrots and celery and a half an onion. After about 4 hours I took out everything, put the stock back on the burner and added more turkey meat, sliced carrots and celery, diced onions and big fat egg noodles. I served it with a salad and rolls and it was so delicious! The broth is the best I have ever made! I froze about half. I am trying to have at least 10 quarts of various soups and stews stored in the outside freezer for tax season. If I can get more that would be great! It helps me get through my most busy time.

I have been trying to find more activities for the girls during this very cold and snowy season. Yesterday we went to a new kids place called Jumpin Jax, with lots of inflatables and jumping equipment. They ran, jumped, screamed, used the zip-line, screamed, totally went wild! It was awesome! And when we got home I barely got dinner in them and they were ready for bed! Thank you!

Did I mention they have a parents waiting area with 2 big leather sofas, a big-screen TV, WIFI and FREE Starbucks coffee? We went back today! Can you blame me?

Monday, December 28, 2009

All I Want For Christmas...

I sure hope everyone else got their fondest desires for Christmas. I know I did! I had a wonderful day with all of my children and my Mother who arrived on the 16th from San Diego. She told us the minute she got here that she expected some snow...and boy did we deliver!

From Thursday to Sunday we got snow, snow and more snow!! I've lived in the midwest since 1999 and this is the biggest snowstorm I've seen. Of course this is exactly what I moved here for!

We had been waiting for a few days, as the forecast was for snow on Tuesday and we were sorely dissapointed. But we all decided it had been worth the wait! We got around 11 inches depending where the wind blew. It started out as freezing rain on Thursday afternoon, we had been home all afternoon cooking and baking for a party at my neighbor Karen's home. I made my Hot Artichoke and Spinach dip and Mom made her delicious Deviled Eggs. I also baked a few loaves of Pumpkin Spice Bread. About 5pm I had to get in the van and drive to the hospital to pick up Randy (He works at KU Med.) It had just turned over to snow and was coming down really heavy. I have never driven in that much snow! There were NO lines on the highway! Where there was normally 3 to 4 lanes of traffic, there would be only 2 cars side by side. It was really scary for me, but I just kept singing Christmas Carols and praying that the Lord wouldn't let me die on Christmas about your white knuckle driving!

It took me an hour to get to Randy, usually takes 30 minutes. And then it took us an hour to drive home, but I felt much better on the way home with Randy in the car with me. The girls cheered when we walked in the back door and I think I saw my Mom make the sign of the cross!! LOL! I told her as I was leaving, "They're all yours if I don't make it back!" You can imagine her relief!

We drove the 3 houses up the street to Karen's, my Mom originally said she wanted to walk but changed her mind, good choice Mom. It was warm and festive in the Griffin home and there was so much delicious food! We had the most wonderful brisket, and the bar-b-que baked beans were awesome! (A staple on any Kansas City table.) The girls performed one of their Christmas songs and then invited everyone to sing "Silent Night" with them. Karen sent us home with a huge bag of cookies which was completely gone by the next afternoon. Yummy peanut butter and these great peppermint shortbread.

The girls all went to bed around 9:30pm. They were ultra excited and kept reminding us that we had to go to bed too or else Santa wouldn't stop at our house! Yeah right! I was up until 1am and my Mom said she was up until 3:30am! Santa delivered a really nice keyboard for our family. I used to play the piano, so I am going to teach the girls to play. If any of them really seem to have a talent for it, then I will get them another teacher, but for now, I thought it would be fun to teach them myself.

Each of my daughters got a game for their Nintendo DS and a nightgown and a book. My Mother bought outfits for each of the girls that matched, and then she made additional matching outfits for their American Girl dolls. So cute and the girls really loved them! I got a new nightgown too! And the movie "Julie & Julia" which I just love! I am hoping to get Julia Child's Cookbook soon so I can try some of her delicious recipes myself.

The rest of the day and into the weekend we did a lot of cooking, mostly soups and a turkey on Sunday, and reading and watching the snow. The girls did go out to play in the snow and we took them to some great sledding hills that are just down the street from our home. They are perfect because they are to the side of the parking lot of our local Lowes store. Everyone drives up there, parks their cars and vans facing the hills and watches their kids slide down the hills from the comfort and warmth of their own vehicles! It is awesome! And to make it even better, there is a Starbucks in the same parking lot...what else could you need?!

We had to say goodbye to Grandma today. She is off to Atlanta to spend New Year's with my brother and his family. The girls and I are excited about our New Years Eve Girls Night Extravaganza! We are planning to dress up fancy, have only appetizers for dinner with sparkling cider and ring in the new year at about 9:30pm!! Oh I know, we're such party girls!