Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Turkey Day a la Deneault...

Turkey Day began on Tuesday with the arrival of Tyler's Dad and Gigi. The Deneault's have LOTS of family traditions so they had to get in early so we could get them all done! It was a VERY busy week! 

We made Turkey Pot Pies all day Wednesday. If you live in TX and want one, give me a holler bc we have pies for pies. The Deneault's make these every year with no real recipients in mind. So if your a pot pie lover like me, just let me know and I'll make sure you get one. 

Thursday we all got up early to get cooking before the Southlake Deneault's arrived. Fort Worth had some bad weather so the bounce house was a no go. Poor kids were cooped up inside all day, but it went better than was expected. No broken plates, no broken bones and no major arguments. So in my book, that's a success :)

Friday we decided to go work off the extra pounds we gained the day before and went to the Fort Worth Zoo. It was an absolutely gorgeous day and it was GREAT to get out of the house.  

And last but not least on Friday night, the adults were in need of some alone time; so, we left the kiddos with the sitter and headed out for a yummy dinner out! 

Hope ya'll had a fabulous time with family and friends! We sure did! 

Monday, November 29, 2010


Thanksgiving was absolutely fabulous but this preggo is EXHAUSTED.  I've been sitting/sleeping in this spot for the last eight hours. Productive I know. Promise I'll post pics from Turkey Day soon but until then you can find me here :)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Getting older offers many new perspectives and I think for me, the older I get the more clarification I feel about what's truly important and just  how lucky I am. I am the happiest I have ever been in my entire life. I am secure with myself, secure with my spouse, secure in our relationship and our life. We have our tough times, but all in all, we have a pretty great life. Which is why, I feel like it's important to mention a few of the people and things for which we are most grateful for this holiday season: 

1. My husband. He has made me a stronger person. He challenges me to be the best that I can be and yet he always knows when I need his shoulder. To my chagrin, sometimes I feel like he knows me better than I know myself and I'm thankful that he loves me as much and as sincerely as he does. He is my best friend. 

2. My family. This year has been an emotional roller coaster for my family, but I have to say for all the drama that has transpired we are in the best place we've ever been in and I've never felt so loved and I hope they feel the same.  I'm excited for the future and all that it brings. I'm also extremely excited to have my Aunt and cousin back in my life and even more excited to get to know a cousin I had never even met! 

3. My in-laws and their gigantic family. As in-laws go, this can be a pretty dicey situation; but, I've gotta say... ( and I'm not just saying this because half of my readers are my in-laws :)) I hit the jackpot! I feel like I'm part of the gang. I love getting to spend time with all of them and I am SUPER excited to see my brother/sister in law and my adorable nieces and nephews in St. Louis this Christmas. They are so fun and it's been too long! 

4. My girlfriends. Seriously. I don't have enough words to express how thankful I am for my girlfriends. We may not talk ALL the time, but I know exactly who I would call in an emergency, in a fit of rage, in a tearful moment, or for a good laugh. To say they are my rock, doesn't even begin to define what they are to me. They get me through the day for a multitude of reasons; whether it's a serious talk on a restaurant bathroom counter, a good cry with two maybe three bottles of wine, or a laughing fit when someone decides to bust out Nelly or fake fall in the middle of the mall just to cheer you up. I am lucky to have such strong, passionate, different and wonderful women in my life. To Brooke, Elizabeth, Christen, Laurie, Katie, Klement, Ashley, and Megan: THANK YOU for loving me... ALL of me :). My baby is going to be TRULY blessed to have so many amazing adopted Aunts :) 

5. My baby. Already I am a different person. We haven't even met and already you are such a large part of me. The love we feel for you cannot be measured and I am excited for you to become a part of our family. You are loved, very loved. 

6. Montana. I am soooooo not an animal lover, but Montana you have captured my heart and forever changed my perspective of animals. Thanks for FINALLY warming up to me and being the best cuddle buddy EVER. 

7. Our Texas Friends. Tyler and I have made many new friends in Texas this year and geez, we are so appreciative of you all. You have taken us in and made us feel part of the group. We've had a blast with you all and are excited for this next year! 

8. (This one is shocking I know!) The move. This move has been the most challenging thing I think I've ever done. It has tried my patience, my courage, my nerves, and my heart, BUT looking back..... This move has also made Tyler and I THAT much closer, it has forced me to live outside my bubble and to step outside my comfort zone. I've learned just how strong I can be and I'm thankful for that knowledge. 

Take a minute to thank those who've loved you this year! 
Happy Thanksgiving! 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Busy Bee!

I am hard at work getting ready for Turkey day! In-laws arrive today, tablescapes done, partial food prep done, housekeeping done (thank you wonderful husband) and kids activities planned and booked :)....  I am whipped..... a few pictures to prove it! 

Adult Table

Kid Table 

I figured if I was dragging my Texas Nieces and Nephews to my "kidless" house. I could at least provide some fun :). So yes, Tyler and I booked a bounce house :) Shhh..... it's a secret :) I also made them these fun kid packs (pictured above). I'm hoping all this keeps them fully entertained so there parents can kick back and relax. 

Ok, back to prepping. Gobble, Gobble! 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Feeling Festive

I'm feeling festive today. Maybe it's the colder weather, or my early discovery of the all Christmas music radio station; either way I'm in a baking mood! Today I made some Thanksgiving goodies for the peeps in Tyler's office and our wonderful neighbors.

Cranberry Banana Muffins

2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
1 2/3 cups sugar, divided
1 cup water
2 eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup shortening
1 cup mashed ripe banana
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

In a small saucepan bring cranberries and one cup of sugar to a boil. Let simmer for 5-7 minutes or until berries begin to pop. Drain and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening and remaining sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda; add to creamed mixture alternately with bananas. Fold in cranberry mixture and walnuts.

Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake at 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.


Monday, November 15, 2010


Reason number 5,000,277,322........ that I hate our grocery store! They stopped carrying my beloved Claussen pickles!!!!!


I scoured every shelf I could, only to ask a store employee, who nonchalantly told me "We no longer carry that brand Ma'am." ARGH! 

So now no Krystal's hot sauce and no Claussen pickles.... I mean seriously, what's a pregnant chick to do? And they call themselves a grocery store.....


I'm back!

My parents came in town on Wednesday to celebrate my birthday for the weekend so I apologize for suddenly falling off the radar, but I was a little detained :).

We had a GREAT time and I promise to blog a little more about that later in the week, but in the meantime, I've got to share with you the most AWESOME prezzy ever; or more accurately "prezzies." My parents went above and beyond in the gift department this year. 

As most of you know, my Mom is basically Martha Stewart reincarnate. She's the type of gal that removes all of her regular decor during the holiday season and replaces it with Christmas stuff (that she's usually made). She's BEYOND crafty. She's also a sewing goddess; that said, ever since I found out I was pregnant and started checking out all the cool baby sites on Etsy, I've been aching for a sewing machine. 

Well, that's just what I got for my birthday, a sewing machine! But not just a sewing machine- the cadillac of sewing machines! I am so EXCITED. Visions of ruffled onesies and monogrammed burp cloths are dancing through my head!!!

And if that wasn't enough, my parents also bought enough "starter materials" to last me a lifetime. Tyler lovingly refers to it as the " Laurie Williams Starter Kit." 

I am one lucky girl! And Ashley as I'm sure your wondering, yes, the first thing my Mom taught me to do was monogram. Check out the napkins I made yesterday! 

Ok back to sewing; next practice project-pillow. :)

Have a great week! And Good Luck gearing up for Turkey Day! 

Monday, November 8, 2010

Weekend Picnic

Happy Monday! I hope ya'll had a great weekend. Tyler, Tana, and I had a very laid back and relaxing weekend. It was absolutely beautiful in Fort Worth so we tried to get outside as much as possible. On Sunday we pulled a total "TV movie scene" and had a picnic in the park, it was a BLAST!

Scenes from our Sunday picnic......

notice how all the preggo's doing is eating and sunning....very productive I know.....

And as usual Tyler kicked my tail in Spit......

Now, it's back to the weekday grind! Lot's going on this week, Tyler's out of town until Wednesday and my parents are coming in to town on Wednesday night for a long weekend to celebrate my birthday! The BIG 28!!! AGH!!! I am as old as Tyler was when I first met him.... and I used to call him "the old man," which he lovingly reminded me this morning, followed by, " So I guess this makes you an old woman now...." Karma.... gotta love it! 

Have a great week! 

Friday, November 5, 2010

The baby is a growing....

Today our baby is 15 weeks old, he/she is the size of a naval orange. Which is completely believable considering I'm the size of a house :). We've got three more weeks to go until our precious "it" will finally be big enough to tell whether it's a boy or a girl. I CANNOT wait! In fact, I called the OBGYN today to try and finagle an earlier ultra sound..... " But Thanksgiving would be so much more ideal....." said in my sweetest tone. Yah, that didn't fly. So December 1st it is.... In the meantime I'm chomping at the bit to get started on that nursery. Or more accurately, I'm chomping at the bit to pick out colors and fabrics, so my Mom can get started on the nursery :) (Heehee, love you Mom!)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

It's that time of year again....

I'm not sure if it's the fact that the holidays are upon us, or that FW has been rather cold the last two days (50 and rainy, EEK!) or that my parents are coming next week, but I'm feeling rather festive lately....

I've been busy making lots of yummy soups, like Lentil Soup (my favorite), if your interested I've got a GREAT recipe below....

Lentil Soup 

4 pieces of bacon, chopped 
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 (14.5 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 cups dry lentils
8 cups water
1/2 cup spinach, rinsed and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons vinegar
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
In a large soup pot, brown bacon, 8-10 minutes. Add onions, carrots, and celery; cook and stir until onion is tender. Stir in garlic, bay leaf, oregano, and basil; cook for 2 minutes
Stir in lentils, and add water and tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for at least 1 hour. When ready to serve stir in spinach, and cook until it wilts. Stir in vinegar, and season to taste with salt and pepper, and more vinegar if desired. 

Also, I've been getting kind of crafty. I'm super excited because Tyler and I are hosting Thanksgiving this year for a bunch of our family. This is my first real "hosting" gig and I'll be cooking for ten, yikes! But in the meantime, I've been making a few decorations..... 

Just call me Martha..... :)

Monday, November 1, 2010

I have an obsession

I have a new obsession, or more accurately my first pregnancy craving. I have consumed TWO jars of pickles in the last four days. It's safe to say I'm obsessed....or......'er..........pregnant. 
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