Friday, December 30, 2011

7 Random Christmas Takes

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Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Here is a bit of what ours looked like.


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1. I’ve really enjoyed having Paul home the past couple of weeks. Besides being a big help with the kids, it’s just been nice to spend the time together during the day. He goes back to work on Tuesday, so we’ll see how I adjust now that I’ve been spoiled.


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2. Through the fault generosity of my mother, we’ve acquired a variety of singing Christmas animals over the past couple of years. I put them on the mantle with some of the other Christmas decorations, but naturally they didn’t stay there long. Jacinta in particular has been quite enamored of them. While for the most part I don’t mind the music, there are one or two that may mysteriously lose their batteries between now and next Christmas.


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3. Speaking of Christmas, Veronica finally got the dinosaur that she asked to be her prize for potty training. She’s done really well over the past couple of months - though she sometimes has an accident if she is too busy playing – and for the most part she can go number one independently. Barring the occasional gratuitous use of toilet paper or fifteen-minute hand washing session.


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4. Apparently it is just too much to ask your children to smile nicely for a Christmas photo at church.


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5. Or to put down the new toy to get a nice dress picture.


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6. When opening presents Christmas morning, Jacinta felt that the floor was just too uncomfortable. So she got pillows for herself and Veronica to sit on. Ahhh, much better.


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7. After a lovely Christmas dinner with Paul’s brother and his family, the cousins engaged in a game of knights. Why yes, Veronica is dressed like Darth Vader. Or, as she put it, wearing the black armor. It was a great night with fun had by all.

Happy Christmas week!

Friday, December 23, 2011

7 Holiday Recipes

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For this week’s 7 Quick Takes, here’s some new (to us) holiday recipes we’ve made this fall and winter.




1. Pumpkin Cornbread – A tasty variation of cornbread that is perfect for fall. Just be careful not to let it dry out, like I did the second time I made it. My oven seems to run a little hot, so I need to bake it for less time than the recipe calls for.


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2. Crispy Pumpkin Cookies – I love pumpkin cookies, but my husband is not a fan of how soft and chewy they are. Well, these cookies are the best of both the pumpkin-flavored and crispy cookie worlds.




3. Candy Corn Bark – I saw several different variations of this recipe pop up all over Pinterest before Halloween. This version turned out fantastic! And I even found real white chocolate chips (made with cocoa butter instead of oil) at the grocery store. Super yum.




4. Meringue Cookies – I have a lot of leftover egg whites from making ice cream (see below) and I decided to give meringues a try. I went with the Vanilla Rum flavor, it tastes great! Mine are definitely not as pretty, though.




5. Peppermint Bark Fudge – I’ve been on a real peppermint kick lately, and this seemed like the perfect recipe to try to get my fix. So easy, and so good.




6. Peppermint Ice Cream – Speaking of peppermint, one of my favorite holiday treats is Peppermint Ice Cream. I simply must have it around Christmas. Since my homemade ice cream has been turning out so well, I wanted to try my hand at making this holiday treat, and The Pioneer Woman came through for me as usual.




7. Eggnog Ice Cream – Finally, a new favorite in our house, we discovered Eggnog Ice Cream last Christmas and fell in love. So, of course, I had to try my hand at this one as well. I used The Pioneer Woman’s Vanilla Bean Ice Cream as a base (and cut back on the vanilla a bit), then added flavorings from this recipe. I did compensate for the difference in volume between the recipes, but I think I would even go a little heavier on the spices next time.

If you have a chance to try any of these, do it! They are all fantastic ways to celebrate the season.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Friday, December 16, 2011

My First 7 Quick Takes Friday


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I often find that while there are many things I’d like to blog about, my time to sit and write is seriously lacking. So I’ve decided to give this a try, in the hopes that more of the things I’d like to share actually make it up here! Even in abbreviated form. So here goes:


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1. Last night Veronica didn’t want to eat her dinner because she was “too hungry and too tired.” Since I suspected she was angling for another food option, I told her that her only choice was to eat what was in her bowl. So she says, “Can you put some apple in my bowl, please?”


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2. I am surprised her excuse wasn’t “I’m not hungry”, since she was “helping” me bake yesterday. And to Veronica, helping = tasting each and every ingredient that goes into the bowl. And, of course, licking the utensils afterwards.


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3. Ariadne has settled into the wake and eat, then fall back to sleep pattern at night. Hallelujah! Here’s to hoping that it continues.


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4. Jacinta is such a ham for the camera. I tried to sneak some pictures of her putting a burp rag on her head, but the moment she noticed the camera she busted out one of these huge, squinty smiles and said “Chee!”



5. With the help of Fr. Parks at St. Tim’s, we were able to pull together a baptism for Ariadne before her godparents, my brother Brian and his wife Bridget, had to go home. Which was wonderful, since Brian will be headed back to Afghanistan in a couple of weeks. Thanks for the help, Fr. Parks!


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6. This morning I found out that Fr. Santan Pinto, a very good friend of our family and the priest that married Paul and I, died in a car accident while visiting home in India. What a terrible loss for us here on earth. We will miss you, Father! But I know who I will be asking for prayers and intercession now.


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7. And to end on a happier note: Sweetness!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


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One of the projects that kept Paul and Veronica busy last week was a super batch of butter cookies. It happened in stages, making up the giant bowl of dough one day, then rolling, cutting and baking the next. Finally it was time to decorate!


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Veronica was in charge of sprinkles, which was fine by her.


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Jacinta got to “decorate” a cookie. Which meant licking the frosting off and starting over again. And again.


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All the sprinkles have to be sampled, right?


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Done! Didn’t I say it was a super batch?


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Along with the more traditional Christmas shapes, Veronica picked out a few others that she liked. Thank you to Deb and Clint for the timely gift of fun cookie cutters, without which this cookie would not have been possible.


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Nor this one. Dinosaurs are popular in our house.


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This fish was the cookie that Veronica picked out to eat first. She took a few bites then set it aside to “save for later”. She still hasn’t finished it. Girl just doesn’t have a sweet tooth.


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Jacinta, on the other hand…


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A fun Christmas baking project. Now what to make next?

Monday, December 12, 2011

One Week

I can’t believe it’s already been a week since Ariadne was born! Here’s what our week looked like.


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Awake again! For a moment at least. Most of the time she is out like a light. Must be nice.


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Veronica likes to be as close as possible to her new sister. Enjoying a book together.


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Jacinta enjoys books, too. She just doesn’t understand the whole concept of starting at the beginning and ending at the end. So story time with her can be a little…random.


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Because our blood types are different, Ariadne was more at risk for jaundice. Some time in front of the window took care of that, though.


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Cozy with Uncle Tyler.


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Ariadne is very loved by her sisters.

Very loved.

“Help me.”


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“No really. Help me.”


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Veronica may understand “gentle” a little better.


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Our three girls. We are so thankful for each of them.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Introducing Ariadne

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Ariadne Linda Greene.


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12/4/11, 1:33 pm.


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9 lbs, 2 oz. 20 3/4 inches.


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Beloved daughter.


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And sister. And granddaughter.


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