Category Archives: Holidays & Entertaining

Nine is Fine!

Happy birthday, Noah!

Yes, August is a crazy birthday month for us. There’s my mom, Drew’s mom, Drew’s brother, Jake of course, and Noah. Yesterday was Noah’s special day — he turned 9!

Our weekend was full of celebrating. Saturday evening the boys had some of their friends over for a LEGO-themed party. Drew did all the work for this one — I can’t take any credit at all. The kids played LEGO games, built LEGOs, and designed their own mini-figures.

Birthday Party

Birthday Party

For the food, I made pizzas that resembled LEGO bricks, along with hot dogs, chips, and veggies. It was simple, but the kids all liked it!

Birthday Party

Birthday Party

We ended the evening by showing “The Lego Movie” on the outdoor screen. Some of the boys’ parents and siblings also came for that — such fun!

Yesterday we had our family party and that was a great time, too. Again, the food was pretty simple, but sometimes that’s the best. I made a tray of sausage & peppers, a tray of meatballs in marinara, pasta salad with artichokes and sun-dried tomatoes, rolls, and salad. We’ve been enjoying the leftovers :-)

Birthday Party

Today has just been getting the house back in order after a weekend of parties. Dishes, laundry, putting away gifts… My allergies have been crazy today so I took a Benedryl and that wiped me out!

Tonight I plan to watch a movie with Drew and Jake after Laura is in bed (Noah’s at his grandma’s for a couple days), and doing a little crochet. Now that I’m halfway done with my afghan I’m getting itchy to start a new project, but I won’t. I’m going to finish this one up, border and all!

Well, time to get Laura’s bedtime routine going… hope you had a great Monday!

merci Giveaway Winner

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Thanks to all who entered the merci chocolates giveaway! Using Random.org I generated the number of the winner. Drumroll, please! And the winner is….

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The 11th comment was Madeline’s! Congratulations, Madeline. I will contact you for your mailing information.

For those who didn’t win, remember that you can get a BOGO coupon when you send a friend a thank you using  merci’s Facebook app, the Thank-You-Maker

CLOSED {Review & Giveaway) Hostess Gifts and Merci Chocolates

Merci Chocolates

I received a box of Merci Chocolates and a promotional item for my honest review.
I received no monetary compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

If your December calendar looks anything like mine, you’ll be attending several holiday parties. I am always looking for great hostess gifts. What could be better than chocolate? Merci chocolates seem to be made for saying “thank you.” I think the name alone gives that away! And indulging in a piece of yummy chocolate is such a great way to wind down after a whirlwind party.

Each box of merci includes a delicious selection of rich, European chocolates in flavors like milk chocolate, hazelnut-almond, marzipan, dark mousse, and coffee and cream. I think my favorite, however, is the praline-creme. Such a delicious treat paired with a cup of dark roast coffee!

merci

As someone who enjoys entertaining in my home, I know how much goes in to party planning. I don’t think there is anything out-of-the-ordinary that makes a great hostess, though, as long as she is having a great time too. Enthusiasm is contagious! I do appreciate always being greeted at the door, and taking guests special needs into consideration is always appreciated, too. (These are things that I try to do myself.)

I’m really looking forward to our Christmas movie party in a couple weeks, so you can bet I’ll be keeping in mind what I enjoy when I attend someone else’s party. Basically three things: good friends, good food, and good fun. Sounds simple, but I think it’s true! I will also be bringing a gift of merci to my mother-in-law’s on Christmas Eve as a token of thanks for always having a lovely holiday dinner and making everyone feel welcome.

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The sweet people at merci have generously offered to give away a gift pack to one of my readers so that you can also say “thank you” to someone!

Rules

  • Open to U.S. residents 18 and over only.
  • Giveaway will close at 12 PM Eastern Time on Thursday, December 19, 2013.
  • Winner will be chosen by Random.org and posted on the blog the next morning. To enter, please leave a comment telling me what qualities you think make a great hostess OR a party that you are looking forward to this holiday season.

And don’t forget to check out merci’s Facebook app, the Thank-You-Maker! You can send a friend a meaningful thank you, and in return receive a Buy One Get One Free coupon for merci chocolates! If you’re on Twitter, send a tweet about giving a meaningful ‘Thank You’ using the #merciHoliday hashtag.

You can find merci chocolates at many stores including World Market, Target, and Amazon.com. 

Thanks to you, my readers for supporting my blog. And good luck with this giveaway. Trust me, the winner will truly enjoy these scrumptious chocolates!

5 Easy Last-Minute Thanksgiving Dishes

5 Easy Last-Minute Thanksgiving Dishes | puresugar.net

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and if you’re still agonizing over the menu, don’t fret! I’m sharing 5 easy recipes — 3 for side dishes and 2 for desserts. I’m actually making up the sweet potatoes today and bringing them to my in-laws’ house tomorrow!

Maple Baked Sweet Potatoes
maplebakedsweetpotatoes

Green Beans with Lemon
greenbeanswithlemon

Roasted Brussels Sprouts
sprouts

Peanut Butter Pie
peanut butter pie

Flourless Chocolate Torte
flourless chocolate torte

 

From our house to yours… Happy Thanksgiving!

Eleven!

It’s hard to believe that 11 years ago today I was at the hospital, having just given birth to my very first baby. While my White Plains Hospital experience left a lot to be desired (thankfully I only delivered there once), we came home a few days later with a pudgy, 9 lb. 6 oz. bundle of love! It seems impossible that over a decade has come and gone, but yesterday Jake celebrated his 11th birthday.

We had a party with family over the weekend, and yesterday was pretty low-key. I guess he has aged out of our sugar cereal breakfast tradition. He asked for pancakes and sausage instead! Nevertheless, we still set up a special birthday place setting — confetti and all :-)

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He was thrilled with the frame pack we gave him! It will make those Boy Scout camping trips a little easier, I think. It should also last him well into college, if not longer!

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Jake wanted to invite a friend over, which turned into an impromptu sleepover, LOL… Anyway, the kids had fun playing and I made Jake’s requested dinner of chili dogs, chips, pickles (that my dad made), and I made a salad because well, you need vegetables even on your birthday ;-) Instead of cake we opted for make-your-own sundaes.

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It’s been amazing watching this kid grow from a colicky baby to a smart, imaginative, caring tween. Middle school starts in a few weeks, which is just crazy to me. Wasn’t I just enrolling him in pre-school?

jake at 11

As the saying goes, The days are long, but the years are short. So very true!

Happy Easter!

easter greetings

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life.
He who believes in me will live, even though he dies;
and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”

John 11:25-26

Wishing those of you celebrating today a Happy and Holy Easter!

Merry Christmas!

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Wishing all who celebrate today a Merry Christmas!

May you be surround by family, friends, and love all around.