Monday, December 30, 2013


A few photos from our botched trip to see the Nutcracker. You'd never know it was going to go south so quickly from the photos:

Friday, December 20, 2013

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Meatloaf, smeatloaf, double beatloaf

We hosted some of our neighbors for a holiday dinner last weekend. Jeff recently spotted a recipe in a fancy home design magazine, dubbed "Billionaire's Meatloaf" and even though in principal, I think meatloaf is pretty gross, I couldn't get this recipe out of my head. It was wrapped in bacon! Thus our 1950's dinner party was born. One couple brought cheeses for us to snack on and an apple pie for dessert, and the other couple brought mashed potatoes and peas with pearl onions. We provided the meatloaf and a bartender (Jeff) to make old fashioneds. There were 4 children present under 4.5yrs old and at one point Jeff asked aloud whether the house would have been quieter if there had been 4 monkeys loose in the house instead. We all agreed it would be.

Behold! A giant loaf of meat:
And a rather unappetizing plate due to red lighting coming from the red flowers and votives nearby, but I  assure you it was amazing:

I had (naively) planned a dessert craft project for the kids that involved directly copying my friend Lindsey's Facebook post from earlier in the month. Each child was to receive 2 ice cream cones to frost with green frosting and decorate with sprinkles and candy. It was also their dessert. It was closely controlled chaos but at least no one cried (at least that I can recall).

Grown ups trying to eat and pretend that chaos isn't reigning in the room immediately to our left.
Jeff took this panorama but poor David moved his head and looks like someone squished it. It's the rare occasion when I'm so glad we have a giant round table in our dining room.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Usual

Just the usual afternoon walk in our tutu and snow boots.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Better things to do

Jeff was just pretending to rock Edie in his arms like a giant baby while she tried to have a snack. Out of the blue she yelled, "Now you're just wasting my time!"

Monday, December 9, 2013

Nutcracker fail and a gym triumph

I had tickets to take Edie with my Mom to the Nutcracker yesterday. Tickets were expensive and it was a gamble that didn't pay off unfortunately. I loved getting Edie all dressed up and she looked adorable in her formal navy coat. But she had a nasty cold coming on that I was trying to pretend wasn't happening and it literally choose the moment the curtain went up to arrive in full force. I took her to the cry room to watch so she could cough without judgement from those around us, but the view was terrible and if I'm being totally honest, the ballet was a bit more… boring than I remembered. The music is live, but it seemed like the volume was on 1 out of 10, and coupled with my daughter's relentless dry cough, it was a lethal combo. I felt stressed out. We watched from the cry room until intermission and then surrendered.

We watched the Robin Hood cartoon from the 80's at home in our comfies instead. Wah - waaaah. Best laid plans…

I was up multiple times with a miserable kid last night, but she woke this morning pumped and wanted to go to school. So I dropped her off and went to the gym for my latest training appt as scheduled. I was tired and thinking it was going to suck. And it kind of did. HOWEVER! There was one golden moment out of the hour of physical suffering. Mike asked me to try something I had previously been terrified of. I'd even told him a month ago I was scared that one day he'd ask me to do this and he just laughed. Well, today was the day. Admittedly, a shitty choice on his part, given my fatigue. But I rallied and I'm really, nerdily proud.

This may seem a small thing, but he asked me to jump (with both feet at the same time) onto a bench about 2 feet off the ground and land with both feet at the same time.  Before you think this sounds like not a big deal,  go walk up to something (a tall coffee table maybe) and think about doing this. Hopefully I'm not a giant wuss and this will seem intimidating to you as well. Please also remember that I am barely 5'3" so this bench hit me about an inch above my knees. It was TERRIFYING. I felt like that kid that climbs up the ladder to the diving board and then just stands there counting to 3 over and over, but not jumping. I tried to bargain my way out of it a few times but Mike assured me I could do it. I faked out a few times and then... I just did it. It felt like a trust fall with no one to catch me but myself. And I totally caught myself! The high was remarkable, but it only lasted a second because then he made me do it like 10 more times and every single jump was only slightly less scary than the one before. But seriously - the endorphins from that are still with me, hours later.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Tree lights

The idiot squad came in to assist with detangling the lights:

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Physical Fitness Update #2

I bet some of you may have been thinking that my lack of updates on my latest adventures in physical fitness meant that I had quit. But believe it or not, I will hit the one month mark this Friday of sticking to a rigorous gym routine! 

With only one exception, I've been seeing my trainer 3 times per week to lift weights AND hitting the gym twice on my own to do my assigned cardio. I even followed my trainer's instructions while out of town 2 weeks ago - which is not the first time I've packed my gym clothes for a vacation, but it IS the first time I've brought them home stinky. I also worked out TWICE over the Thanksgiving weekend in Bellingham; doing weird cardio in my parents' basement that mostly entailed me flailing around in an attempt to do burpees (which by the way, are the worst thing ever invented) because that was the only thing Trainer Mike (which is how he's listed in my cell phone BTDubs) could think of that required no equipment and didn't include running (which I hate and am terrible at). Before suggesting burps, he asked (very seriously) if I owned a jump rope. My reply, "Do I look like the kind of person who owns a jump rope?" 

Another time, I paid a drop-in fee at the Bellingham YMCA to lift free weights with sweaty hippies. Even more impressive is that when I went to pay this drop in fee, they told me they didn't take credit cards, and instead of using this as my excuse to not workout, I actually walked the block to the free ATM. This may not seem like much, but I am a natural quitter when it comes to working out, so in the words of corporate douchery, I'm "celebrating my successes".  And yes, I realize this all a little braggy, but you guys! This is nothing short of remarkable for me. I FEEL braggy.

Probably the most important thing I've done in this process is get over a minor set-back this Monday. My trainer wanted to weigh and re-measure me at the start of the month and the results were sort of a mixed bag. I started to look at every measurement and got hung up on the numbers and what they all meant. Afterwards, I had sort of a sloppy workout with quaky arms and a quitter's attitude. It was the first time I'd left a training session feeling worse then I'd come in. During the drive home I had to really remind myself of why I'm doing this and LET GO of all the "results". Before I stepped on that scale and had a tape measure wrapped around my thigh, I'd been feeling good. And STRONG. I have more energy, I'm sleeping better and I feel like I'm challenging myself physically in a way that I haven't since maybe high school ballet rehearsals. 

Some people aren't 'gym people' and I totally respect that. Personally, I've always fallen somewhere in the middle - not really at home doing outdoor activities like biking and hiking, but also not super confident in the gym. I could fake it on the cardio machines and do some stretches on a mat, but that's about where it ended. This last month has helped me to feel like I belong at the gym. I take care not to workout in front of the mirror, so as not to get hung up on how I look while exercising and when I'm not thinking about how red and sweaty my face is, I have time to think about how badass I am for understanding how the machines work, or for being able to walk up to the wall of weights and grab the 17 pounders and be all, "Ho hum, I think I'll use these for my 'Renegade Rows' today" like it's no biggy. Because, I'm totally doing exercises called 'goblet squats' and 'renegade rows' and I'm using Kettlebells and Bosu Balls like a BOSS. 


I have been out of town for what feels like weeks, with a business trip and a short weekend with Jeff in California, then immediately up to Bellingham for the holidays. This week is already almost over and it still feels like Monday!

I have a paltry number of photos to share with you, but here are a few from our incredibly relaxing weekend in Cali:

Largely, we spent our time sleeping, eating and drinking. It was lovely. Edie spent the weekend with my parents and I joined them up north upon our return to celebrate my Dad's birthday and then Jeff joined us all for 2 Thanksgivings. I took literally ZERO photos during Thanksgiving but will try to share a few of Jeff's photos here later.