November 28, 2014

OMG, I Am Very Busy, You Guys.

very busy lady on blue couch with phone

OMG, you guys. I AM SO BUSY.* There are sales to shop, lists to make, cookies to bake, and a whole lot of gossip to catch up on. No offense, but blogging just isn’t going to fit in my totally hectic sched.

So, have a wonderful weekend and I’ll meet you back here on Monday to discuss all of our shopping scores and if Carey is really going to go to prison on The Good Wife (NOOOOOOO!!!!!).

*Sometimes when my husband is telling me something I hold my phone up, just to remind him that I could be doing one of my many pressing duties, like unloading the dishwasher or wondering if Adnan Syed will go free, but instead I am choosing to spend my time listening to him. Just a gentle reminder that the woman he married is  practically a saint, which is best acknowledged with Disco Ball clocks and Ryan Gosling t-shirts. HINT, HINT. 

 

November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving From Our Family to Yours

family with Thanksgiving feast and hats in backyard

My mom always told me to count my blessings and, this year, I don’t know if I can count that high. I am grateful for so many things; all the usual suspects – my family and friends, living in a gorgeous city, our new couch (every day I am so grateful for that damn couch), the fact we have a roof over our head and iced coffee in our fridge – but this year there’s also a new one: all of you.

It’s long been my dream to create a space on the Internet where I could post all the stuff that’s rattling around in my head and where I could connect with other moms and women who are fighting the good fight with a to do list in one hand and sense of humor in the other. And it seems I’ve found it.

So, to all of you who give me your most precious gift, your time, thank you, thank you. You’ve made this lady a very happy gal, which means my kids have a happy mom and my husband a happy wife and my mom and dad a happy daughter and my sisters a very happy sister, and, ohmahgawd, fine, everyone I know is indebted to you forever and ever and that makes me very happy.

Have a wonderful day and will you please be sure to eat too much pie?

Happy Thanksgiving!

I’m also incredibly thankful for Erica Bean who takes the most wonderful photos of all of us and never bats an eye at the highjinks I come up with.

November 26, 2014

Fun with Kids: Thanksgiving Hunt with Homemade Puritan Hats

family in Thanksgiving hats being serious in backyard

Listen, it’s almost Thanksgiving and, people, it is time to get down to business. No, I’m not talking about roasting the turkey and creating your damn centerpieces, I’m talking, obviously, about getting your Turkey Hunt together. What? You think food just shows up on your perfectly landscaped table? What is this the future? You people have to work for your food. None of this lallygagging about and running to Whole Foods at the last minute, praying that they still have pumpkin pie. It’s time to lace up your sturdy boots (or zip up your adorable white ones that you scored for $15 at Old Navy!) and get out there and hunt down your food.

little girl wearing DIY Puritan hat decorated

But, first, obviously, you need to accessorize. In the case of our young pilgrim here you might want to take your plain ole bonnet up a notch with turkey stickers and hearts because “turkeys need love too.” Gah, children!

woman wearing gold Puritan bonnet for Thanksgiving

Myself, I prefer to stick to a more traditional, gold glitter bonnet.

man wearing construction paper Thanksgiving hat

For the menfolk, may I suggest a traditional pilgrim hat that would probably have benefited from losing a couple of inches in height, but, nonetheless helps convey the gravity of the day. Thank goodness my handsome pilgrim husband understands the solemnity of the occasion.

little boy wearing Thanksgiving Puritan hat homemade DIY

Because this character clearly didn’t get the memo.

girl in Thanksgiving hat doing a hunt for food

On to the hunt!

It’s important that you take care when hiding your Thanksgiving feast. You’ll notice here, for example, I cleverly used a brown paper bag to blend the brussels sprouts in with its surroundings. Take note, this is a real professional at work.

little girl looking for Thanksgiving food hunt

Bags of peas, whole turkeys, cans of corn – no part of the feast should go unhidden. (Or unfound. For the feebler minded among us, putting pen to paper might be a fortuitous idea so as not to misplace a bag of cranberries that you then remember in the midst of an evening sleep).

little boy finding corn on Thanksgiving hunt

The young folk will hunt high and low throughout the badly-needing-attention landscape.

little girl holding pumpkin with Thanksgiving DIY hat

And who knew the joy one can of pumpkin could bring to a small child?

little boy with pumpkin can in Thanksgiving DIY hat

No, seriously, that can of pumpkin was as good as puppy. I’m thinking about making it my go-to Christmas gift.

mom and daughter wearing Thanksgiving hats with serious faces

At the end of your hunt, you will be graced with the satisfaction that you have gathered your food much like the Pilgrims and Native Americans did so many years ago. Now all you have to do is spend the next 24 hours of your life cooking it.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Linkage:

-Martha makes the best pilgrim hats.

-Photos by my favorite Erica Bean.

November 24, 2014

How to Make an Easy, Homemade Pistachio Cake (with Shirley!)

homemade pistachio cake on plate You guys know I’m all about choosing the path of least resistance (ie. work). At the same time, I’m also a big fan of accolades and require a certain amount of daily recognition to keep my brain in working order (I’ve trained my kids to say things like, “Mom, would you mind not singing? It’s just you’re too good at it.”) So, basically, I like things that look like they took all afternoon to make, but actually only took the 30 minutes before I’m supposed to be somewhere and still allow for time to look for my phone and shoes.

This recipe, you guessed it, fulfills the criteria. It is delicious, moist and decadent, and tastes like home. Yet it also comes from a box, uses orange juice, and can be thrown together in less than 10 minutes (sans baking time).slice of pistachio cake recipe

It’s my go-to dessert when I’m having people over or headed to a holiday party because nobody doesn’t like this cake. At least nobody you’d want to be friends with so not only is it so good, it’s also a friendship litmus test. God, I’m a giver.

And, in case you need step-by-step instructions, Shirley walks you through the whole procedure. Plus, offers AWESOME advice to moms everywhere for the holidays. And makes a total mess of the frosting (seriously, just look below for the actual way to make it, unless you want to sweat and curse then you should totally follow the video instructions).
Happy Baking!

Pistachio Cake Recipe

Ingredients:
1 yellow cake mix
1 pkg instant pistachio pudding
4 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup water
4 drops green food coloring
5 1/2 oz. Hershey’s chocolate syrup (2/3 cup)

-Mix all ingredients together except chocolate syrup and food coloring.
-Add syrup to 1 1/2 cups of batter. Add food coloring to remaining batter. This will make it real purdy.
-Alternate batter starting with green in a bundt pan that is greased and floured.
-Bake 50 minutes at 350 degrees.
-Frost cake with frosting, unless you followed video instructions. Then you’re on your own.

Frosting:
1 sq unsweetened chocolate
1 T butter
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
2 T boiling water (approximately)

-Melt chocolate and butter together in microwave. Blend in sugar and water. Beat until smooth.

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