photos posted

and by the way, i posted photos on the previous post from the grammer family tree trimming party! :)

holly jolly

well christmas is officially here now. i have my tree up (actually two), i've been to christmas parties, i've shopped, i've baked... now just gotta wrap and clean and cook and it's christmas!

this past weekend was bryan's christmas party for work. it was at the ramada in petersburg. it's always there. not sure what's up with that, except it's a pretty decent hotel and i'm sure it's dirt cheap (actually i know so, the rooms are only $50/night!). bryan is on the rec. committee, so we had to get there early to help set up the hospitality suite. it was pretty funny to me to see the way these 50-60 year old men set up for a party. just slingin' stuff wherever. i tried to stay back and let them handle it but i did have to reorganize a few things here and there... like, when you have a tray with a little dip thing in the middle, you're supposed to put one thing in the middle and something else around the outside. not cheese cubes all over the plate. so i had to put crackers on the outside and the cheese in the middle...

since we had a room at the hotel that night, we both had a very good time and took advantage of the open(ish) bar. we actually got just three drink tickets, but the bartenders often didn't even ask for them, and i may have accidentally swiped a few extra tickets off the roll of them that was laying on the floor...

anyway, here are some pictures from our fun evening:

the party started out fairly normally... a few nice shots of friends...

our good friends the bennetts:

our good friends the gooches:

a hug and kiss for my hubby:

bryan with his boys: justin (l) and rich (r) and his co-worker christina's date (c):

me with the girls (christina, tammy and hailey), and woody (far left):

and then bryan ran into santa claus.

santa had all kinds of fun things in his sack. including plastic body parts:

and mini bottles of crowne royale. apparently bryan was a very good boy this year because santa gave him quite a few of those bottles of crowne royale. bryan soon became the dancing king:

and we ended up with about ten pictures of this lovely chandelier:

all in all, we had a great time. :)

yesterday i did tons of shopping and then came home and baked. i swear, you'd think i was betty crocker herself. i made chocolate chip cookies, chocolate cherry cookies and sugar cookies to give to people at work. here's me in suzy homemaker mode.

rolling out the dough for the sugar cookies. these never turn out the way i expect them to. but they were still good. last year i painted each one with icing i made myself. this year it was getting late so they just got sprinkles.

the chocolate chip cookies are just regular old chocolate chip cookies. the chocolate cherry ones have cherries under that yummy chocolate frosting.

my mom gave me this apron. it came in very handy. i really like christmas. last night i made bryan turn off the lights in the living room (just the christmas lights on) and turn on christmas music for me while i baked. it was very fun and festive. :)

i also made mini banana bread loaves but i didn't take any pictures of those because by the time they came out of the oven i was ready for bed.

today's my last day of work until january 3. woohoo! guess i should go see what i need to wrap up before then! :)


achoo! sniffle.. .snort... cough.

have i mentioned how i HATE being sick? i have a cold. again, or still, not sure which. and right now i can only breathe through one nostril. fantastic!

so friday was the grammer family tree trimming party. it was so much fun! i love getting together with the family, we always have so much fun. my level of fun may have been enhanced by the entire bottle of ste. michelle riesling i consumed, not sure. nevertheless, it was a great time! we showed the wedding slideshow bryan worked so hard on and everyone was impressed (as they should be. ;-)). we decorated grandma's tree with the 13,423,598,235 ornaments she has accrued over her lifetime, and we ate some yummy food. and of course drank yummy drink. :) well, i did. bryan had to stick to the coca cola so he could drive my drunk a$$ home. :)

finally, here are some photos from the grammer tree trimming party:

saturday we went over to our friends the bennett's and hung out with the rest of the chesterfield power station crew. i guess there were four of us couples, then the new guy and new girl. we try to get together about once a month or so, and it is always fun to see them. us "engineer wives" can dish about what a pain in the rear our engineer husbands are. ha! not really. we all love 'em. :)

after we left tammy and justin's we went home and got the christmas tree out. bryan lugged it downstairs and set it in the base and i put on my gloves and set about fluffing the branches. it took me about 2 hours to fluff all 9 freaking feet of it. i love our tree when it is finally up and decorated, but getting it up and decorated is not a fun job. it's all worth it in the end though... this year we also put up a 4.5" tree i had from my apartment. i am a little anal and decorate the big tree with only silver, white and light blue, so we put up the second tree to put on all the other ornaments we own that don't fit that color scheme. :) i'll have to take some pictures and get them up.

sunday was devoted to pajamas. well, that is to say, i never got out of them. which is always a good thing. :) i spent a little while preparing my "final exam" for the spanish class i took this semester, which was a 5 minute presentation in spanish. it is a conversational spanish class, so we don't have to do any written stuff, whcih is nice i guess. although being a foreign language buff, it drives me a little bananas that she doesn't teach us how to write it. but i'll get over it. :) so i did that, then decorated the tree (bryan helped some, too), then made jerk pork chops with pineapple chutney for dinner. they were yummy. the only problem was that i have gotten the concept of selecting recipes for the main course, but somehow have forgotten that we are going to need to eat some side dishes as well. so i quick heated up a can of corn. well, that still wasn't going to be enough. so i found a box of instant mashed potatoes in the closet and fixed what was left of them. bryan doesn't like the instant mashed potatoes so much, but he dealt with it alright. :) from now on i'll plan the ENTIRE menu beforehand, not just the meat. :)

and this week so far i have been.... stuffy! last night went home and drank a theraflu, then watched tv, then drank another theraflu, watched more tv from the bed, then went to sleep. i feel a bit better today but still STUFFY! and i would go to the doctor, but we all know they're going to say "common cold" and send me on my way with orders for rest and liquids. and that just ain't worth $25 to me! i can give MYSELF that advice! :)


december already?

so today is december 1 and i hear the forecast is a high of 76 degrees! figures. welcome to virginia winters. personally, i like it this way. although it sort of puts a wrench in my wardrobe works, because you never know how to dress...

well, we did not in fact win any money in atlantic city last weekend. bryan and i, however, understand that gambling involves both winning AND losing. and that's alright. we just have to make sure we win next time. i lost my entire allotment for the day. i actually left the poker table with $16 (10% of what i started with) and went and stuck $10 in a nickel slot machine. i managed to turn that $10 into $208, then promptly began losing it all again. freaking slot machines. i was just CONVINCED that if i kept playing it would go back up, but it did not. so there that went. and i left with empty pockets. still makes me mad to think about how greedy and stupid i was. this is why i never play slot machines.

so we got back home sunday night from pennsylvania after some nasty traffic in delaware. that stupid state... no offense to anyone who is from or likes delaware. there is a toll to get in and a toll 13ish miles later to get out. talk about greedy! it can't possibly cost them that much to run 13 miles of interstate. once we were past there traffic moved pretty decently until we were in northern virginia, which was no surprise. and of course the HOV lanes were not open in our direction. as always.

this week has been busy at work and at home. somehow since we got married and i have nothing to plan, i have managed to become a domestic goddess of sorts. well, not really. but close! i have been trying to keep the house neat and i figured out this neat trick so that i actually have something to cook for dinner. i pick out 4 or 5 recipes and then make a list of everything i need for those before i go to the grocery store, so that i have things to cook for dinner for a week or so. this is a nice change from coming home from work, staring into the fridge, staring into the pantry, staring into the cabinets, then ultimately staring into the freezer and deciding it's too much of a pain to thaw anything out and so maybe we'll just have chipotle. now we just decide to have chipotle without going through all those other steps. ;-)

last night i actually made chicken enchiladas with salsa verde. they were actually REALLY good if i do say so myself! i was impressed anyway. and bryan liked them, too... anytime i can cook something besides rattlesnake pasta or broccoli casserole and he likes it, i feel like i've accomplished something. :)

after dinner last night i headed to my friend jodie's house to help her and her daughter jordan build an indian village for jordan's class project. the kid is 7, i have no idea why they give second graders homework that obviously must be done by the parents with minimal involvement of the kid. i mean, seriously, what 2nd grader that you know is going to be able to sit down and come up with a plan to recreate an indian home scene on a cardboard box? maybe i underestimate 7 year olds. but anyway, it was fun. i have pictures of our handywork on my cell phone but i left that at home. i'll try to upload them if i remember.

this weekend is shaping up to be lots of fun! tonight is the grammer family tree decorating party at grandma's house, tomorrow we have a party at our friends' the bennetts, and i am determined to convince bryan to lug our giant 9' christmas tree downstairs so we can get that set up.

before all that, though, i have a lot of work to do!