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cookie party

A friend of ours invited us to a cookie/gingerbread house making party on December 21st.  The girls were happy to go because of the kids and the cookies, I was happy for that too but I was also very excited to be in this kitchen, which is kind of my dream kitchen.  It has an "island".




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We mixed everything together:



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Rolled it out (on the island!) and got to work:





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If our oven had a window on it, I never would have almost burned 144 gingerbreadmen. 

Well I probably still would have.





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My girls wore their aprons.  :)



Time for decorating:





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Then they all ran around like wild animals for 15 minutes:





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It was a lot of fun, and we were still snacking on cookies well into the new year! 


I also did a lot of reflecting and I think I might have been a completely different person with a whole different life, if I had been fortunate enough to have an island in my kitchen growing up.  

If I had a reading nook and a kitchen island in my house, I would probably never leave.  And I would be very fat from all the baking I would do on my island.  And very smart from all the books I would read in my nook!

christmas randoms...

My goal was (always is) to have my Christmas cards in the mail by December 1st. 

The 15th at the very latest.

Well.....



These suckers went out like 4 days before Christmas, and it was a miracle they got into the mail at all.






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I love cards, sending and receiving, and I love writing them out, but this year for some reason they were just a thorn in my side (and clutter on my table) the WHOLE month.  Not next year.


Our lil Elf on the Shelf is named C Jr.  When you open him, you have to give him a name right away but of course all 3 of the girls picked different names, no one wanted to give in and agree on a unanimous name, so we took the first letter of each of the names they picked (I forget what they were, it's written in our Elf on the Shelf book) which happened to be C J R which turned into C Jr.  Like Carl's Jr.  And equally as tasty.

But C Jr. sure was a mischievious fellow. 

I'm pretty sure he hid my ipod from me for a good two weeks just to be funny,

and he may or may not have stolen $25 from us! 

He's very tricky:




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He was so out of his element in San Diego, you could tell he missed the North Pole and snow at Christmastime:







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We walked through Christmas Circle this year.  Partly to walk off the big meal we'd just had, and partly because my check-engine light is on and I would never live it down if my car broke down and had to get towed out of Christmas Circle and backed up traffic for miles and miles.

I actually preferred walking it, although next year it'll be nice to plan on that and have the appropriate coats & scarves.










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Sweets for a little friend:




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These pretty wrapped packages were one of the highlights of the Christmas season for me.  They went to friends of Jesse & their girlfriends, who were SO not expecting anything from us, and had nothing for us in return which made it so much more fun, for some reason. 

The girls went with Jesse to give the gifts and I'm sure his friends felt awkward not having anything to give in return, but it took away the "chore" of gift-giving (the obligatory "exchanging of crap" that Christmas can turn into) and just made it fun to give.






The girls actually said, out of their own mouths, with no coaxing from me, that giving gifts IS a lot more fun than receiving them.  I was proud.  :)


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My favorite night of the Christmas season, except for Christmas Eve:



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We watched Christmas movies with the heater on (our version of a fire in the fireplace), ate popcorn and drank hot cocoa.  By the end of the movie, everyone was cuddled and asleep....even Missy.  :)

dumping continued, again...

A sweet gift from the girls when I was sick with allergies ALL weekend long:





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Training at work, from my desk.....for 4 very long hours:


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Mallory, testing out why dogs have so much fun sticking their heads out the window:




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We are so silly:


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Just another day on tv!




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Birthday party for a friend of Jesse's.....which ended up being the "cooincident of the century" because it was directly next door to the house I grew up in:




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Church dinner:



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Also at the church dinner....if I could get my neck to appear this long in all photos and in person, I'd be happy:



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Purple cauliflower.




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Over-priced and freaky-looking, but just as tasty as the white kind:


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Went to Karl Strauss @ lunch to p/u some growlers of beer for Jesse's brother and his friends.   Had to try and conceal the fact that some spilled and my cubicle smelled like beer for the second half of the day:




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Sick day, healthy lunch:


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Toesies:



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Mallory modeling the hat I knitted for her a few years ago:



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Happy mail day for me:


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Hard at work/play:



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Playdate!



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Funniest sign that made me laugh out loud...not as funny to Jesse:



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School picture:


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Crazy sock day!  (aka: everyday for my girls):


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Mmmmm:


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Friends:


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Blanca trying to sneak Andrea's slice of her own birthday cake!


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No meat for Jesse:



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I saved this little guy from my grandma's lead feet...go little guy, go!:



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Breakfast of champions in my new bowl from Anthropologie:



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Drill Team's Choice award recipient:


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Letters from Santa!
The girls were soooo excited to get these personalized letters in the mail:



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Complete with PROOF that they were good girls this year:

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