Monday, December 24, 2007

An Attempt at Christmas Cooking...

To help my Mother with the Christmas Eve dinner, I volunteered to make the bean salad. First, I must admit that this particular dish isn't a favorite of mine. It must be made the night before, so the beans have time to soak up the vinegar marinade. My first dilemma occurred not long after I started. I had my Mom's recipe out, and was reading the directions, and adding all the ingredients like a pro. (Or so I thought). Then my Dad walked in, stopped for a minute while examining my bowl of beans, and said..."Umm, Kristen I think the lima beans have to be cooked." Of course the lima beans were the first thing on the recipe, and I had added the green beans, wax beans, and kidney beans on top of the lima beans. Set back number 1-After about 30 minutes of picking through the other three, I isolated all the lima beans so I could cook them. I thought I had avoided catastrophe. So, while the lima beans were cooking, I thought I would whip up the marinade. Easy, right? No. Set back number 2-We didn't have the right type of vinegar. After a few minutes of pleading, hugging, and begging my brother Josh to run to my Grandparents for the correct vinegar I succeeded in making him feel sorry for me. While I waited for the vinegar, I decided to cut the onions. Set back number 3-I had no prior experience with onions, but knew that they could make your eyes water. I thought I was safe with my glasses on. Wrong again. Half way through attempting to cut the onion in rings, I decided that the family would have to settle for half moon pieces instead of circles. At this point, I realized that not only were my cutting stills poor, but I was crying like a little child. The tears were pouring, and my glasses were fogged from the steam from the lima beans. Eventually, I did manage to get all the ingredients together. After stirring it incessantly, and placing it in the refrigerator, I took a look at the kitchen. It all began on clean counter tops, and with an empty sink. Two cutting boards, 5 bowls, countless spoons, two pans, and a knife lay around the kitchen haphazardly. As I did the dishes I thought, "So, this is real-life cooking." And I have come to a conclusion...the only reason that Martha Stewart makes things look easy, is because she can have as many out-takes as she needs. And she has a staff to clean everything up after her show. Everything on TV is fake. If you want to see real cooking, come on over. There might be more of what I'm cooking on the ceiling and wall than in the dish, but I guarantee a great experience. No out takes required.

Friday, December 14, 2007

I have elfed myself...

Well, I've given into the growing 'Elf Yourself' trend. I must say, that it's a pretty good dance. Probably one I would do myself in person. Hope everyone is having a great holiday season!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

A bit of Christmas nostalgia

Here it is again, one of my favorite times of the year. CHRISTMAS! I can't help but love everything about the season. The weather has turned cold, and hopefully there is snow on the ground. (Sadly, we don't get much snow in KY. I'd prefer a blizzard.) Everywhere you look there are lights and decorations. And oh how I love the Christmas music. All of it. But, I do have to admit that Santa Baby is my favorite to sing when I feel like dancing around. I love to talk to people about their holiday traditions. Each family is unique, and all those traditions uniquely special. I know my family has a ton of Christmas traditions. Like for example, my fathers endless cookie making. It drives my Mom and I crazy, only because of a weakness to walk into the kitchen and grab a few. And our yearly trip to the tree farm to buy the 'perfect' tree. We all pile into the Durango (our eight horse powered open along with Madison our maltese, and listen to Christmas music. My favorite tree trip was when I was in middle school. My family recalls this story as the 'Christmas Tree from you know where.' We arrived at the tree farm and it was like a movie. There standing in the middle of the field was the PERFECT tree. My Dad swears there was a light beaming down from heaven, saying Porter Family Tree. We knew it was definitely ours. So, we bought it, and tied it to the car, and headed home. But in true Griswold style, Dad started to put the tree in the stand, and it just wouldn't stand up. After a few tries, he looked at the trunk, only to realize that it was insanely crooked. After a quick call to the tree farm, Dad packed up the tree, and we loaded up for round 2 of Christmas tree fun. Half way to the tree farm the tree fell from the top of the car, and was run over by a semi, and a couple cars. Dad did manage to get the tree tied back to the car, and by the the time we made it back to the farm the tree was needle less, all that was left was the crooked trunk. Everyone laughed, and did find another tree, this time with a straight trunk. But, this bit of Christmas nostalgia is relived each year on our trip to the tree farm.

But, most importantly Christmas is a celebration of Christ's entrance into the world. How amazing to have a Heavenly Father that came into the world to die for our sins! It gives me chills when I think about that kind of love. Amazing! I'm truly grateful to have a close, personal relationship with Him. It's a life changing experience that I hope everyone I come in contact with will have with Him. And during this season of shopping, and trying to find the perfect gift. I hope we all remember that the perfect gift was given to EVERYONE in Christ Jesus all those Christmas's ago!

Friday, November 23, 2007

YouTube - Best Wedding First Dance

YouTube - Best Wedding First Dance
Classic...this made me laugh the entire way through. Definitely something that should be done at every wedding!

The turkey that almost died...

So on the night before Thanksgiving I was driving out to my parents house to spend the night. My Mom has this crazy rule that all her children have to wake up on Thanksgiving morning smelling turkey. So, it was late, and I was tired from the long day. As I was pulling into our driveway, I noticed what I thought was a sack of trash laying in the middle of the driveway. I drove out around "the trash" and started to roll my window down when all of a sudden I was looking into the eyes of a HUGE turkey. Obviously he was taking a rest from being a fugitive turkey attempting to evade inevitable death of being a main course at dinner the next day. But, little did he know that I almost flattened him with my car. I was thoroughly amused as I watched the little guy scramble away across my grandparents yard. It was to good story to pass up for a blog entry.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sleep. A precious thing.

I know it seems absurd to dedicate an entire post to sleeping, but it seems that I don't get enough of it anymore, and I'm starting to miss it. Long hours at work, paired with the hours spent late into the night studying have caused a serious lack of Zzzz's. Sometimes I wonder whether I need as much as my body tells me that I need. But then I realized that if I require 8 hours, why fight it? Snuggling up in my warm flannel sheets, with my favorite blue pillow (shown in this picture), sounds extremly inviting on these cold winter days. I find that my dreams are always strange. And sometimes I wake up wondering if my dream really happened. Hopefully with finals approaching and Christmas break near, I will be able to catch up on some snooze time soon. But, then again I might be out walking in the snow with my dream guy. After all, if I'm going to stay better be as good as my dreams!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Obsession? No way.

I've had quite a few people tell me that I have an obsession with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Depending on my mood I will simply agree, laugh and tell them that I inherited it from my insane family, or point to each arm and tell which bleeds black and which bleeds gold. I can't really explain the phenomena that has taken over most of my free time on Sunday afternoons. Growing up in an area where it's common to know more about the condition of the QB's health than your own, affects you on a deep level. Not to mention my father's delusion that I was a boy for the first 6 years of my life. Then Josh came along...THANK GOD! There are several photos of me in little boy Steeler clothes, but my mom saved me in most by fixing my hair in pigtails. The only way it can be explained, is that it's more like a BIG family. Even living 5 hours from God's Country, PA when you run into a fellow fan it's like being magically transported back to the Burgh. The dialect comes out, "Yunz guys see that play last week during the Stiller game?" And you find yourself rattling off stats to a complete stranger. I've also discovered a certain level of confidence when talking about my boys. For example, my main boss at work grew up in Cleveland. In the first few minutes after meeting her, I was telling her I had some Brown's toilet paper out in my car, just in case all that frustration from cheering for a pathetic team caught up with her and she needed a good cry. Luckily for me, she didn't realize I was being serious. I know I'll always be a Steeler fan. Even if they never win a game. Just don't be surprised when I jump up and start screaming at the television. Or ask to sit in the same seat I was in during the first half, because the team was playing better then. It's an act of faith for a good fan. Oh yeah, and all Burgher's know fans never wear sleeves under their jersey. Other than that come on over and enjoy the game!