Saturday, January 7, 2012

Parting Gifts

Each year for our White Elephant party, I make something for our guests to take home and enjoy.  This year I decided to make some Chili-Infused Olive Oil.  It was quite simple and thank goodness it didn't make a mess!  I even made little tags and wrapped them up in pretty tissue paper.  By far one of the craftiest things I've ever done!

White Elephant Menu

I have been SO busy the past few days prepping for our annual White Elephant Christmas party.  I always put out an excellent spread (if I do say so myself).  Have a looksie and see for yourself:

This was the menu for this year:

Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms
Garlic Parmesan Chicken Fingers with Sara's Smokey BBQ Sauce & my Kicked Up Honey Mustard
Vegetable Eggrolls
Big Ol' Party Meatballs with Sara's Smokey BBQ Sauce
Spicy Black Bean Dip
Walnut and Blue Cheese Grapes
Pistachio and Goat Cheese Ball
Wrapped Brie
Almond Mocha Meringue Bark
White Chocolate Oranges
Mint and Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pies (instead of using a full pie shell, I made my own graham cracker crust and made bite-size in mini muffin tins)

Oh, and who could forget about the refreshments!?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Shake, Shake, Shake!

I got a little creative this morning.  I had an empty spice bottle and decided to clean it out and fill it with dried legumes for a makeshift "instrument" for Redmond.  I was quite proud of myself because I am, by no means, one of those "creative types". 
Shaker, meet lentils.
I put a little masking tape on the lid to be sure it
wouldn't open......

....but I got a little carried away ☺
Added instructions, just in case.
Once I had finished my artistic creation, I had to wait for Redmond to wake from his nap before I could try it out.  He had to give it a little taste know, the pre-requisite for babies/toddlers when it comes to anything new.

Shake what yo momma gave you, boy!

He loves it!!! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

White Elephant

Two years ago Jason and I decided to host a White Elephant Christmas party for our friends at our home.  We provided the food, drinks and atmosphere and each guest was asked to bring a gift for a gift exchange.  Some of the gifts are useful (candles, liquor, movies, etc.),  some are funny (Shake Weight, pillow pet), some are creative (beer coozy belt, gift card encased in a jell-o mold,) and some are just outright ridiculous and raunchy (I'll let your imagination take over here ☺).  We all had so much fun with it that it's become an annual event.  Here are just a couple pictures from last year:


This weekend is the 3rd annual Hayes White Elephant Christmas party.   So, my week is being spent cleaning, organizing and, starting Thursday, getting a TON of food ready.  I absolutely love entertaining and, like I've said before, I love cooking so it's a lot of fun.  This will also be the very first time that I will be away from Redmond over night.  eek!  He's going to Grandma and Grandpa's, so he's just across town (about 3 min away), but still.....eek!  I guess I'll just have to have a few cocktails to keep my mind otherwise occupied!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!!!

2011 was a good year.  I got to watch my son learn to sit up, crawl, walk, talk.  I spent many nights rocking, pacing, singing to him.  I probably slept the least amount this year, but had the most energy.  I lost 40+ lbs (let's not talk about how much I've gained since Thanksgiving :/).  Thanks to hubby's job and us spending so much time in MD, I've gotten to see and spend a lot of time with my sister and her family in VA.  I've made new friends and lost loved ones. 

Now, I hate the idea of New Year's Resolutions.  I think they're horribly cliché and I just think that if you want to make a change in your life then you should just do it.  Why wait for a new year?  But, there is something about a "new year".  Like being reborn, starting over.  I decided a few months ago that I wanted to stop watching so much television.  For the most part, I've succeeded at that.  Now, I'm determined to get back on the weight loss wagon and re-lose the 10(!) lbs I've gained since Thanksgiving....and then some.  I'll be posting on my Tumblr blog everyday this month, recording my weight every single day.  Jason and I have decided that 2012 is when we want to get pregnant again.  I need to be healthier.  I have to be healthier.

Bring it on 2012, can't wait to see what you have in store for us!