Thursday, December 31, 2009

Make This!!

I found this recipe the other day while reading The Oregonian on Tuesday. It sounded so tasty & easy (and it was!). This is the FIRST dip I have ever made that does not include a package of Lipton Onion Soup mix and a container of sour cream. I also love it as it reminds me of the 70s....when clam dip was all the rage (& if I remember correctly, was always on the table for chips)! Enjoy!

Old Fashioned Clam Dip with Bacon & Chives

3 6.5 oz cans minced clams
8 oz cream cheese (room temp)
1/2 t Worcestershire sauce
2 T minced fresh chives
1 strip bacon, fried crisp & finely minced (divided)
1/2 t lemon zest
freshly ground black pepper

Drain the minced clams & reserve the clam & juice separately. Pour the clam juice in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and gently boil the juice until it is reduced to 1/4 c, about 20 minutes. Set aside tocool.
Place the cream cheese into the bowl of a food processor, add the cooled clam juice and process until smooth. If the cream cheese is too thick for dipping, add a tsp or two of water to thin. Add the clams, Worcestershire sauce, 1.5 t of chives, 1 T bacon and the lemon zest & process to combine. Season with black pepper. (Dip can be made to this point one day ahead, covered tightly wiht plastic wrap and refrigerated).
To serve, bring to room temp and sprinkle with remaining chives and bacon. Serve with chips or crackers.


One word to describe this dip: YUMMERS!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

First Snow!

We had our first snow of the season today. So beautiful!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Great day with great friends!

The Steven's hosted a get-together today for our mutual friends the MacWhirters (who moved away a while ago to NC). Jeff smoked a brisket, ribs and pork butt.
Jennie, Denise, Tammie & I

Bruce & Geoff

Jake, Matt & Matty

Ally & Nas
I only took photos the first 2 minutes I was there. There were lots more friends...but I was busy chatting & eating!
To the MacW family: It was so good to see you all this afternoon!!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

It's Christmas!

Hope you are all enjoying your Christmas! I am loving being at home with just the 5 of us. Remy is grumpy for some reason today. Maybe he didn't get what he wanted from Santa. Nas' favorite gift? A leopard print Snuggie. Did you all hear her screams of excitement? Speaking of excitement: While on our way to a Christmas party last night, a C-Tran bus clipped our car. Three (yes, 3!) Camas police officers responded. No one was hurt, but Omid's baby (his big green machine) will need a new mirror. The turkey is in the smoker, we are eating our way through the day and will be off to another Christmas party tonight with good friends. Merry Christmas!

God & Dog



I have always thought there was a reason dog was God spelled backwards! Not coincidence!

Merry Christmas!

Jesus: The Reason for the Season!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Winter Solstice

My sister Cynthia & niece Sammee came down to visit us yesterday. We talked Omid into taking us out to dinner. We looked through the Payback book to see which restaurant had a coupon and ended up at Blackstone Grill. The restaurant was really busy, which was good - because our table of seven was not quiet!



Creme Brulee = YUM!

Cynce & Sam






I love Tamarack Firehouse Red!

What is Tamarack Firehouse Red?


"My chicken fingers tasted more like fish fingers, but my soda was delicious."


Thank you for dinner! Now, please take us to look at Christmas lights!

Aaaahh! No more kissy pictures!
We actually had two - but this sneaky boy deleted them both.

After dinner, Omid drove us to this one house that was advertised in the newspaper. Their Christmas lights were synchronized to music (tune your radio to 87.9). After that, Omid played his Lady Gaga cd and we drove all around town looking at Christmas lights. What a fun way to celebrate the Winter Solstice!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas Past

1999

1998

1997

1996


1977

Reason #809 to Love Trader Joe's!

Eucalyptus wreaths for $12.99!!! This is the second TJ eucalyptus wreath I've purchased in 5 years...and the price five years ago was $12.99. I put the new wreath in my downstairs powder room. The scent of the eucalyptus plus the scent of our Christmas tree makes the entire house smell like Christmas. The other wreath (which I removed from my powder room), I had Matty fasten to the front gate of our picket fence. It looks adorable! It would look even more festive if we had some snow. The idea was not mine - I borrowed it from The Nie Nie Dialogues (Life Moments/The Snow Circus). I loved her idea!
**Speaking of wreaths: I may try and make this appetizer wreath for a party we are attending this week. So cute!
AND...the kids and I always make these cookies for our cookie plates. They are a Christmas tradition.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Make This!!

Ranch dressing. I found this recipe on http://www.allrecipes.com/. It was delicious! The only thing I did differently was add a tablespoon of lemon juice.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Stephanie Nielson Part Two

Part Two of Stephanie Nielson's journey.

Paws for a Cause

Lara Blair is once again sponsoring the Paws for a Cause event for the SW WA Humane Society. The cost is $50 and you get a 15 minute photo session with Lara. All of your $50 donation goes to the Humane Society. We did this for the first time last year and it was fun. We chose a beautiful print of Remy and have all 20 of his proofs on our fridge. The event will take place in February and sessions go fast...contact Lara Blair today if you want an appointment!

If you want to see some photos Lara took of Remy, click here, here, here & here.

And click here to see Laura's poster announcing this year's Paws for a Cause. Remy is featured twice on the poster. Can you spot him? There is another Vizsla on there too.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Make This!!

I am recycling this post from last January. I made turtles last week to take for the CHS teachers. I made sure there were extras for my family. These are so sweet, salty & chewy.

I plan on making them again this week for the SKY teachers (+ extra for Omid & the kids).

Easy Turtles

1 package mini pretzels
1 package Rolo candies
pecan halves (about 30-50)

Place pretzels on cookie sheet. Unwrap Rolos and put one on top of each pretzel. Bake in a 250* oven for 6 minutes. Immediately remove cookie sheet and press a pecan half on top. Let set. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I Love This Man!


I love you Omidjoon! You are a wonderful husband, father, son, brother & friend!

Read this!

Do you read the Nie Nie Dialogues? I found Stephanie's blog just before her terrible plane crash last year. Her story is so sad, yet inspiring. Warning: if you read the article, have a tissue or two handy.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Aha!

Do you have white baseboard mouldings in your house? I am constantly saying, "In our next house, no white mouldings." They are so hard to keep clean. My usual way of cleaning them is taking cheap baby wipes and wiping them clean. Though whenever I do this, there are always lots of tiny dust balls left to pick up. Today I used a mini whisk/broom that I usually keep in our tent. It worked great! After I whisked a section clean, I vacuumed up the dust. Voila! Clean baseboards.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Dove Lewis

Sad news. I read in today's Oregonian that Dove Lewis' Southeast Emergency Animal Clinic is closing this Friday. This was the emergency hospital we took Remy to when he ate an entire package of Trident gum last spring. I am sad because Remy received such excellent care at the clinic. If we need emergency services again, I will have to drive into Portland to Dove Lewis' main clinic. I have heard too many negative things about the emergency clinics in Vancouver to risk Remy's health.

Read the article here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Biggest Loser - Canine Edition



This is Julius. He is my parents dog & is about 15 pounds overweight.


Julius is visiting us for a week. He will be put on a strict diet & exercise regimen while he is here.
Very strict diet & exercise regimen.



Help me!



Saturday, December 5, 2009

Friday Night Fun

TGIF! Last night we headed over to the Kellogg's for pizza. Lin asked Omid to make "that" salad dressing he always makes. I forgot we were out of basalmic vinegar so Omid had to make that "other" dressing (which is actually more delicious!). After dinner we headed over to Big Al's for some bowling.

Omid toasting me with a Fat Tire.
Ward preparing to kill the pins.



Omid trying (unsuccessfully) to get Fari to bowl.



Nas & her friend Jason. Jason won by the way (though Nas did get THREE strikes in a row!).



Lia, Jason, Madison & Nas


Lin &I showing off our fashionable shoes


Look at that form!
You should all know that when I was in the 3rd grade, my sister and I took bowling lessons (our parents bowled in a league). Then at WSU, I took bowling lessons for a PE at WSU. Don't mess with me when it comes to bowling! Just kidding. I came in dead last between Jason, Naseem, Matty & I.


Omid finally got up to take over for Madison. He did really good! I think he should join a league. He would look so cute in a league shirt.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Oh Yum!

I love Starbuck's Pumpkin Spice Lattes, but don't love the $3.95 price tag. I found this at Fred Meyer yesterday (on sale for $3.00). I think the taste is pretty close to the Starbuck's coffee and the price is right too. I plan to purchase several more tins just in case it's a seasonal flavor. Just don't try their Chai Tea Lattes...they are gross & taste nothing like chai. I tried it once and took the nearly unused can to work. It's still sitting in the cupboard after two years.


Here's a shameless plug for Omid's famous smoked salmon. Thanks for the mug, Jodie!




Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Music!


I like listening to Christmas music......but there is ONE song that should absolutely NOT be allowed on the radio: All I Want for Christmas is You by Mariah Carey. Yuck, gross, vomit, disgusting!
Other Christmas songs I think should be illegal at Christmas time (& I absolutely change the radio station whenever they come on)...
Last Christmas by Wham (Omid really despises this one) - just ask Jane!
Step into Christmas by Elton John
Santa Baby by Madonna (Terrible!!) - Eartha Kitt's version is much better
Celebrate Me Home by Kenny Loggins
Christmas Wrapping by The Waitresses
Any Christmas song by Bruce Springsteen & N'Sync

Songs I love this time of year:
Oh Holy Night - Josh Groban
Mary's Boy Child by Boney M
Anything by Andy Williams, Perry Como or Percy Faith Orchestra
Feliz Navidad by Jose Feliciano
Do They Know it's Christmas by Band Aid (loved this when I was in 9th grade!!)
Anything by Barry Manilow, Mannheim Steamroller & Trans-siberian Orchestra
Christmastime is Here by Vince Guaraldi - Makes me think of Snoopy everytime!
**EXTRA! I watched the Band Aid video on You Tube tonight and found out I looked exactly like George Michael in HS!! Decide for yourself at :50, 1:59, 2:06, 2:43, 3:05 & 3:35.
Me

Oh the 80's...how I miss your music!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Round Lake

Nas and I took Remy for a walk around Round Lake this morning. It was really beautiful. We saw lots of people walking their dogs and also a few kayakers on the water.
Lily fields (minus the lillies)



Cute Christmas tree with a Mrs. Butterworth Angel on the top.


I may steal this idea.

Remy trying his darndest to get the Mrs. Butterworth Angel. He tried to climb the tree and when that failed, he barked for several minutes. I finally managed to get him away and back on our walk.




The water was so calm it was like glass.
**Katie B. = I told Nas that the first time I met you was at Round Lake. Do you remember?!