Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A New Year

Can you believe another year is upon us? I love New Years, not only because of the Glam, or Parties, {not that we are in the loop anymore}, but for the planning of a new year, setting family goals, writing resolutions, and making each year better then the next.

Tonight we are going casual with some friends to The Red Iguana for some yummy fair! We will ring in the New Year with close Friends, and there is nothing better!

{You must try the Red Iguana if you have not been there, it is authentic and rated one of Utah's Best!}

I love Ringing in the New Year with Toasts and Kisses! I Toast each of you Success in the upcoming year!

We wish you all a happy New Year!

Enjoy It!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Coq Au Vin.... that's what!

4 slices bacon
2 chicken breasts
2 thighs
2 legs
1/2 cup flour
Salt and pepper
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 cups pearl onions, peeled
2 cups mushrooms
2 carrots, cut in 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup cognac or brandy
1 bottle Burgundy wine
2 cups chicken broth
5 sprigs fresh thyme
2 teaspoons herbs de Provence
3 bay leaves
Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
In a large, heavy skillet or Dutch oven, fry the bacon over medium heat until crisp. Transfer bacon to paper towels to drain. Coat chicken pieces in flour, salt and pepper. Brown chicken in hot bacon fat on both sides.
Add garlic, onions, mushrooms and carrots. Saute 2 minutes to soften. Pour cognac into a small glass. Remove pan from heat, pour in cognac, put pan back on the flame. Flambe by lighting a long match and holding it just above the pot and light the fumes. The brandy will catch fire and the flames will burn out within 1 minute. When the flames die down, gradually stir in the wine and broth. When the wine is well blended, add the herbs. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Remove cover and continue to simmer for 15 minutes to allow the sauce to reduce a bit. You may want to add 1 tablespoon of tomato paste or cornstarch to aid in the thickening process.
To serve, top the chicken and vegetables with reserved crumbled bacon and fresh parsley.


Glorious Sales

Huge Clearance Sales at Pottery Barn I LOVE this Snowflake Tree topper and this Santa Glitter Canvas!
Click here

Only one glitch: you have to have money to spend after Christmas!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas Top 5

#5 Ryan's excitement while sledding....priceless....

#4 Christmas Dinner and Brunch, it was so nice just being with the family, and the Crab Legs were soooo good!

#3 My present from Jamie, he is really good at gifting! French Iron Cookware, I have already used them every day since! And they are so pretty too!

#2 When Ryan saw his train set all set up under the tree and squealed Choo choo's over and over again. It was so much fun. He carries his trains all around with him.

#1 My little Super Hero! My fav gift of the year. This sweet handmade super hero cape from grandma Becky!

What we do on a White Christmas..










Dont worry we made snow angels, had hot cocoa, played games, threw snowballs and opened gifts too!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The stinky cheese

I decided to make Brie en croute for a holiday party tonight. I Love Brie especially during the holidays and thought it would look festive baked in pastry. But did you know Brie is a really stinky cheese? I came down stairs at 5:45 am this morning on my way to the sweat shop {some peopel call it a gym} to a terrible smell in the kitchen. I thought something had died, as I sniffed around I found the culprit! It may have ruined my relationship with Brie forever!

Here is the recipe: I added dried cherries for some christmas color.

1 sheet frozen puff
pastry, pre-packaged
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup walnuts
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 (8-ounce) wheel Brie
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
Crackers, for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Defrost puff pastry for approximately 15 to 20 minutes and unfold.
In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the walnuts in the butter until golden brown, approximately 5 minutes. Add the cinnamon and stir until walnuts are coated well. Place the walnut mixture on top of the Brie and sprinkle the brown sugar over the mixture. Lay the puff pastry out on a flat surface. Place the brie in the center of the pastry. Gather up the edges of the brie, pressing around the brie and gather at the top. Gently squeeze together the excess dough and tie together with a piece of kitchen twine. Brush the beaten egg over top and side of Brie. Place Brie on a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes until pastry is golden brown.
Serve with crackers.
To give a special look, cut extra pastry into heart or flower shapes and bake until golden.

{recipe from paula dean}

Ps: I googled stinky cheese, yes I really did, and Brie is rated amoung the top. At least now I know its normal, and tastes nothing like it smells!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree Oh Christmas Tree how lovely...

deck the halls with boughs of holly fa la la la la la la la la. tis the season to be jolly...

{now can you picture ryan and I amidst many boxes of decorations,playing chirstmas favorites on our cd player, and hot cocoa with more marshmellows then cocoa?}

and don't forget our trip to get the tree of my dreams, ok maybe not the tree of my dreams exactly but the perfect not breaking the bank type. and i loved how my tree looked bundled on top of my car, very traditional don't you think?

someday i will have a tree that has nothing childlike , like beautiful white and blue birds, with glass balls of silver shimmering. and people will tell me what a beautiful tree I have, with a shinning silver star on top.

ry loved the experience, especially how the christmas lights {white only of course}lit up his belly button when he stuck one inside of it. my thoughts turned to ET, anyways,

how i just love christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


One of my favorite days last week was when the rain was pouring down and we were all snuggled up in our cottage on the lake.

We didn't dare venture outside for fear of getting soaked. So we turned on the Christmas tree lights,made eggs and bacon and watched the entire second season of Top Design. Eddie Ross was one of my favorite designers. And guess what? He has a blog, and it is awesome.{Not to mention he used to work for Martha, and we all know how much I love her}

CLICK HERE to get to his blog!

I love his styling! And I want this house for christmas please!

if you like his blog you might like martha stewarts personal blog too!


See if you can find the deer in the picture. I know I am so lucky to have this adorable child!


I was invited to a cookie exchange on tues night. It was so much fun. Here was my contribution:


Makes about 5 dozen
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon bourbon or orange juice
2 1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3/4 cup chopped pecans (best if chopped by hand)
1/2 cup sifted confectioners' sugar, plus more for rolling
1/4 teaspoon salt
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and honey until fluffy. Add bourbon, and beat to combine. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pecans, confectioners' sugar, and salt. Add to the butter mixture, and beat to combine. Wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 3 hours.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with Silpats (French nonstick baking mats) or parchment paper. Roll the dough, 2 teaspoons at a time, into balls. Place on prepared baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between them. Bake until brown around the edges, 12 to 13 minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Roll in confectioners' sugar to coat.

The honey gives these a wonderful flavor!
{recipe from martha stewart living}

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

There is no place like home...

{Ryan devouring some monkey bread a Watson family favorite}

It has come to my attention that A few of you think we are still on vacation, no the reality of real life has returned full circle, I am no longer enjoying laying bed talking to Jamie for hours in the morning, or eating Panera cinnamon crunch bagels for breakfast.

On our trip home, our plane leaving Charlotte had difficulties and so we were late and missed our connecting flight. We spent 4 and a half hours in the Cincinnati Ohio Airport. Luckily we had a portable DVD player{thanks Tina it was a life saver} and we had lunch at Wolfgang puck {It was pretty good}. I had a terrible headache so Jamie suggested that I go and get a massage, I couldn't argue with him, could I? They had a small spa in the airport, and it was perfect. The four hours went by pretty fast and then Ryan and I both slept on the entire flight home. That was a miracle in itself.

We had a lovely trip but it is always nice to come home! My Christmas decorations have made their way out of boxes, our house smalls like spice, I still have to do laundry, I gained five pounds on this trip, and so I have been at the gym in the wee hours of morning. I still have Christmas shopping to do, and neighbor gifts, oh and Christmas cards, {they may get out a bit late this year.} I am not complaining, I am looking forward to some Holiday Cheer!

Tonight we are getting our tree- and I cannot wait!

With out further adieu here is the last of our pictures! Goodbye NC see you next year!

Looking out at all the airplanes is a perfect view for a two year old! Dum Dum suckers in mass amounts help for a cheery flight too!

Isn't that such a cool bird?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Our friends Sarah, Adam and Talia, spent one day with us last week. Sarah and Adam are our friends from Virginia, Sarah and I were roommates, and she was dating Adam when I was dating Jamie. They live in Charlotte, it was fun seeing them.
I found the best BBQ restaurant for lunch "Lancasters BBQ in Mooresville"

Ryan and Talia {Ryan was so sweet with her, holding her hand and giving her kisses}
After lunch we decided to go back to the lake and enjoy the water. Jamie and Adam took the kids on the canoe, {i had no idea but Adam is a canoe expert and took Jamie on a long excursion. Sarah and I spent an hour trying to find them and eventually gave up}

Sarah and I were on the paddle boat, it was a nice and easy ride!
Talia found herself some leaves.
Talia and Adam
Sarah and I ended the afternoon doing a project while the men folk watched a manly movie. Sarah ran the Charlotte marathon the following morning, we are so glad they came to visit us!

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Inlaws


playing games, eating turkey, sleepovers with our nieces, crafts, visiting, cookie decorating, laughing, canoeing.

let me introduce you:

playing games {jamie was the UNO champion!i would expect no less from him, he makes me proud}

beautiful izzy our niece with a Gerber baby face.

my niece katie had fun sleeping over with us and on a school night, she was the one who only wanted a "really good lunch" she entertained ryan for me and was so much fun.

grandma jan and sarah our niece who knows the word to every pop song on the radio. {she also knows how to dance just like the music videos, we had to have a couple of dance parties, and i was very impressed with her moves!{don't worry i had a couple of sweet moves too}

katie decorating cookies, {a tradition from my family}

ryan telling grandma nan goodbye,is in her late 70's AND She still works full time {for reals},she sews for people in her community, and can really cook! she never forgets a birthday and has a heart of gold! we are lucky to have her!

jamies sister kristen and her daughter izzy, kristen drove down from Virginia. kristens husband is serving i believe his third term in the military.

jamie with his mom jan and step dad duane

ryan and jamie taking an afternoon nap {much needed after all the adventures we were having.}
raelynn and katie, they are such sweet girls, we had fun watching sisterhood of the travelling pants 2 and eating salt a vinegar chips!they also indulged with me in a few days of crafting!
grandy kandi with izzy, grandi is special to us, she drove down with kristen to help her with her two little ones.

neices sarah and allison

ryans couisn nate {kristens son}
he has the cutest voice and a large vocabulary!
sarah proudly with her craft project
jamies mom jan, who is spirited and very funny!
duane jamies step dad who is the nicest person, he and jamie were able to work on a few projects together and we consider duane part of our family.
{we also enjoyed visiting with karen jamies sister and her husband anthony, but we didn't get any pictures of them}