30 November 2015

NaBloPoMo 2015: The End

And here we are once again at the end of our month-long blogging adventure. This particular year was bittersweet without my Uncle Jim, but I know that he's glad we continued the BEDFAMM tradition. Ultimately, I still had fun, particularly with all the throwback posts. As per usual, I will be going with my traditional wrap up post, links to my favorite posts from each year:

NaBloPoMo 2015
Baby-To-Be
Paris 2010: The Elevator Series
Pregnancy Photo Shoot
History of November 23rd

NaBloPoMo 2014
Saturday in St. Paul
Oakies and other stories
TJ and Cats
Eight Months Ago Today

NaBloPoMo 2013
Answers, Part One
Answers, Part Two
Rock Band with the P-Ster
Thanksgiving Wrap-up

NaBloPoMo 2012
Pannekoekun Huis
70 Years!
1996 Ford Taurus
New House: Part 6A

NaBloPoMo 2011
Day 1: Leaves!
Calvin the Video Star
Cat Ownership 2.0
Dance Your Cares Away

NaBloPoMo 2010:
Turkey Day
Stuffed Squash
Happy Birthday, Grandpa!
Beauty of Fall

NaBloPoMo 2009:
Turkey Day, Part 2
Old Friends
Day 5 - A YouTube Clip
Moon in the Morning

NaBloPoMo 2008:
Pasta Carbonara
A Day in the Life
Yes We Did
88 Years Young

NaBloPoMo 2007:
Les Aventures de Domo Kun
Sunday in France
A 10 Hour Day
A Month of Posts - Day 1 - The blog post that started it all.

And of course, it's not a blog post without a photo of a cat:

A little blurry, but I caught him before he ran away. :-)

29 November 2015

Baby Prep: Part 7 of ???

Given that today was really our fourth day off work in a row, it seemed like we should at least try to do one productive thing with the weekend. It can't all be eating and relaxing all the time, now can it? In that vein, we had picked up some packages Chez Gzmoohoo yesterday - new window treatments for the office and the nursery!

Here is the before:

These blinds got mangled during the break-in, so it was time for something new. 


The transparent curtains and blinds semi-destroyed by cats were just not going to cut it in the baby's room. We needed something relatively cat proof and that would block out more light.
And the after:

A huge improvement - cordless blinds that the cats shouldn't be able to mangle. I hope. The set downstairs are a slate gray color.


The nursery got those same blinds in white, plus some room darkening/heat saving curtains in a pretty gray pattern that goes perfectly with the crib.
The pattern is a bit hard to see on those curtains, so here's a link to them on Bed, Bath, and Beyond's website. Pretty, right? Now there's just some actual decorating to be done in there, and purchasing of stuff and we should be all set. Fun!

The cats were typically lazy today, as is their prerogative. 

She likes naps. And that blanket, for some reason.

28 November 2015

Caturday

My main activities for the day have been outlined elsewhere online by Mr. Moohoo. We had an excellent meal of leftovers at their house this evening, as well as some great conversation. Plus, we got to bring some of the leftovers home with us! Score. I love Thanksgiving almost as much as they do, although not enough to prepare it on my own time.

Aside from the trip to Chez Moohoo, we had a pretty lazy Caturday around this house. I got some work done on the holiday cards we'll be sending out (watch your mailboxes next week sometime) and Andy took full advantage of the Caturday theme:

Two out of three of them were enjoying a nap.
So all in all, an excellent day and there is still one more day of weekend left!

27 November 2015

Post-Thanksgiving

Today was an extraordinarily non-blog worthy sort of day. The biggest excitement? A badly needed trip to the grocery store as one cannot live on Thanksgiving leftovers alone. There was also some napping/lounging with the cats, and starting a new book my mom lent me. None of those things make for particularly good photo opportunities. Instead, I'll share a few more photos from yesterday that didn't make the original post.

The former kid's table, now acting as a staging area for desserts and other sides.

Prep work in full swing. 

The Jim memorial.

My version of the two-pregnant-ladies photo. I'm very excited for our daughters to grow up together.

The other dog, Mimi, who thinks I am one of her best friends.
Sorry, Mimi, my cats will always be way more cute than you:

See?

26 November 2015

Thanksgiving Day 2015

We woke up this morning to the first serious snowfall of the year, although not so serious that it looked like it was going to cause any driving inconvenience. Just serious enough to be pretty, so that this was the scene when I arrived for my first Thanksgiving celebration of the day:


Preparations were well underway, of turkeys both actual and slightly more abstract:



Andy and I enjoyed a lovely meal and great socializing with the Miller/Flaherty group. It was bittersweet with Jim, but I absolutely know he was there in spirit.


From there, we headed over to the big city to the west for a celebration with the Rinderknecht's. Sadly, I only got a few pictures of the dogs...

Rubio wearing his squirrel sweater. Ideal in winter so he can go outside and chase the real thing.
We had a lovely day with all of our family. The cats on the other hand were just super lazy:

25 November 2015

Baby Bump Wednesday - Week 25

In all previous NaBloPoMo marathons, I've had cranberry bread prep of some sort featured on Thanksgiving Eve. And indeed, that is what I have spent my evening doing. See?





Mom and I were super successful as per usual - she may have even exclaimed that it's the best ever. Our loyal tasters tomorrow will have to judge for themselves. I only had a small sample before leaving their house and it did seem quite excellent.

Today is also Wednesday, which means it is time for a baby bump update, here in the midst of Week 25. Plus, fashion show!



As someone at work said today, I am definitely starting to look pregnant. You don't say? Now it's time for a quiet evening at home before tomorrow's festivities. Lucy is looking forward to it, I think.


24 November 2015

The Greatness of John Williams

Every time I return from band rehearsal after running through the Star Wars medley, I am reminded of how great John Williams is at his craft. His movie music is some of the best ever, which makes it really fun to play. Everyone knows it and it's complex and nuanced for us, the band members. Here now are a few of my all time favorite John Williams pieces:









Ok, so my love of/obsession with the Olympics may have had something to do with this list as well. So sue me. Also, it appears some people on the internet agree with me.

Ok, bed time for people and cats. Only one day left of work this week and then Turkey Day! Yay!


23 November 2015

History of November 23rd

I thought I'd do a look back at all my posts from November 23rd, an "On this day..." kind of feature that would only be possible during NaBloPoMo. Here goes nothing:

2014: Warmer than Average - It's good to be reminded that while last winter got off to an early start, it wasn't all cold all the time from that point forward. Last November was rough. Also, it was similarly warmer than average today.

2013: Timberwolves vs. Nets - I'm a little bummed that I have apparently deleted the photos that used to be in this post. Oops. But I have not yet been to a basketball game yet this year, so this is a good reminder to get something on the calendar.

2012: What's for Dinner? - Yum, quiche. Another thing we haven't done in a while that will need to be remedied.

2011: Plumbing Repairs - Ah, yes, one of my favorite days to be a renter. That would have been expensive.

2010: Baby Shower - I've lost touch with Becky a bit recently, but it's crazy to think her son must be almost 5 by now. When did that happen? Time sure does fly.

2009: Greatest Hits, Part 1 - Ahahaha, the ugly dress party. I still can't believe I went out in public in that dress. At least I only spent $5 on it.

2008: Paris Sculpture - Yep, still some of my favorite pieces of art in Paris, and some of my favorite photos.

2007 - No post, but here is the one from November 25th explaining why not.

And that's it... 2007 was the first year of this blogging adventure, so the best I can do from years before that is dates more or less close to November 23rd.

November 26, 2006: Turkey Day

November 21, 2005, an update from my teaching experience in France.

November 26, 2004 - A wrap-up of Thanksgiving, mostly.

November 25, 2003 - Turkey Day anticipation and some news about my prep for study abroad in France. Wow, that was a long time ago in internet-time.

That was fun! I can't believe I've been blogging in some form or another for 12 years. That seems nuts. Granted, it is now mostly confined to the month of November, but I am still doing it. Quite an accomplishment.

And now, today's obligatory cat photo:

An older photo, but funny... Calvin finds the bed-making process to be FASCINATING and always gets in my way. Weirdo.

22 November 2015

Baby Prep: Part 6 of ???

Today was a pretty lazy/unbloggable Sunday. Slept in, went to see the new James Bond movie with mom (Spectre - excellent for a Bond film, despite the reviews), and then home for dinner and relaxation with Andy and the cats. The only thing that we really accomplished today was a small amount of baby related prep. When we went to Ikea to acquire the crib and dresser, we also bought a rug for that room. Today, we laid it down on the floor. We may rotate it 90 degrees, but for now we've got heavy books on top of it to help it lay flat:


We both found it to be very adorable and very kid's room appropriate. We're having fun. 

21 November 2015

Baby Prep: Part 5 of ???

The major furniture purchases for the nursery are in place and assembled. However, we still had to deal with that massive desk. Remember that? First step, go to Ikea and find a new desk that will fit in the cat room/office in the basement. Assemble said desk/ Mission accomplished:
 



Step 2: Empty the contents from the original desk. Done:





Step 3: Go to Target for some organizational items, and then put all the stuff from the old desk away in its' new home:

Lucy thought she was helping. :-)



I think we're set. Next step - decorate the nursery. :-)

20 November 2015

Winter is Coming

And no, not in the fun way that means the premiere of a new season of Game of Thrones is imminent. In the snow/cold/dark way. Please look carefully at the photo below of the pond at Toro, paying particular attention to the left side:


That, friends and family, is ice forming on the surface of the admittedly quite shallow pond. Still - Boo, I say! On the other hand, check out this post from November 12th of last year for a view of the same pond. At least we haven't gotten to that point quite yet.

We are having a quiet evening at home, punctuated only by an always exciting trip to Costco to pick up our Costco essentials. What might those be, you may ask? Mostly, almond milk, fruit, hummus, and some really excellent mozzarella for our homemade pizzas. If anyone ever needs anything at Costco, please let me know.

Ok, time for some cuddle time with kittens. I love winter in that respect - that cats spend so much more time sitting on our laps:


19 November 2015

Brad & Lily's Wedding

I realize now that the wedding of my brother-in-law Brad never made the blog. What a massive oversight! I spent all that time talking about our road trip to Andy's cousin's wedding, and yet nothing about the members of his family we are closest to. Shame on me.

So, without further ado... the wedding took place in Aspen, CO over Memorial Day weekend. Andy went a day or two earlier than me as his best man duties required some advance assistance. I arrived on Friday, flying into Denver with my in-laws, Lois and Keith. We rented a car at the Denver airport (in the rain, boo) and then drove the 3 or so hours to Aspen, through some unbelievably beautiful mountain country. Not a drive I'd want to do in the winter, as there was still snow in places on May 22nd! 

We arrived in Aspen and, around the corner from our hotel, this was the view:


For his first few nights there, and my first night, we stayed at the Molly Gibson Lodge, just on the edge of the quaint little downtown. But geez, what a view! It was amazing to walk around town and be confronted with that everywhere you went.

On Saturday, the day/night of the wedding, we moved the to St. Regis, where the ceremony and reception would be held and where everyone else was staying. It's the second nicest hotel I've ever stayed in, second only to that one year at the Fontainebleau in Miami. I mean really, look at this room:


On Saturday, Andy had all sorts of best man type stuff to do. As I was not a member of the wedding party, I spent most of the day wandering around Aspen. It's a small town, very walkable - I was not disappointed in the scenery:

A small square downtown.

The John Denver Sanctuary is on the north end of town, along a quiet river. Very peaceful. 

A piece of sculpture adjacent to the John Denver Sanctuary.
After a pleasant morning/early afternoon walking around town, it was time for the main event. Here we are with the bride and groom at the reception.  I am posting it despite the questionable quality as it's the only photo I have of all four of us from the whole weekend!


Lily did all the decorating herself, and it turned out really nice:



We had a great time, and it was so wonderful to see those two get married. They are a great couple and I look forward to the rest of our lives spent with them.

The cats did of course miss us while we were gone. Doesn't make them any less weird: