Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Marley & Me...or our life story?


We saw the new dog movie, Marley & Me, last night - it was FANTASTIC! Super funny, but with lots of heart. Quite possibly one of the best family movies we've seen in a long time!

And more importantly, it mirrored A LOT of things that the hubby and have have gone through with Jonas - and it had both of us crying by the end - to think about what it will be like someday to lose him.

Seriously, go see it. Unless you hate dogs, you WILL LOVE this movie!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

We're IN! SKOL VIKINGS!!


Photo from espn.com, courtesy of Elsa/Getty Images

Photo from espn.com, taken by Jim Mone
Photo from espn.com, taken by Ann Heisenfelt

And I didn't even need to cheer for the Packers this time around (not that it did much good last week...)!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Al's latest escapades

Al, the green blowup alien that lives in our lab, has been showing up in odd places lately. For example...hanging in front of Pat's bench - with the stupid sailing picture that also keeps popping up!





And in the men's bathroom...


More to come later, I'm sure.

Jonas's Dilemma



Yum! Pig's ear! Here I go, out to my spot where I eat my treats. Oh wait, it's covered in snow. I don't want to lay down in the snow. Oh well, I guess I'll just have to eat it standing up. This is going to be a bit tricky...how am I supposed to hold it and chew at the same time? Crap! I dropped it...where did it go? Oh, yep, there it is, now if only I could get it without putting my entire head into the snow...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Stupid snow.

It took me 2 HOURS to get home from work last night. And we have to shovel again. And it's too damn cold to walk the dog, so we have been bringing him into the kitchen to hang out for a bit, but now he thinks he should get to come in whenever he feels like it! Stupid snow.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Cookies

Christmas is coming way too fast! I just started baking cookies last week, and I haven't even switched out the dishes in my hutch for the fun red holiday ones yet! Luckily I was able to find some crazy evergreen boughs to fill the flowerpots at our main entrance when I was back home this weekend - and got them in while it was still relatively mild (and raining a bit) yesterday morning! Now they're already covered in snow! I was feeling a bit overly ambitious yesterday and made 2 batches of cookies, started some cranberry spice vodka infusion (for the New Year's Eve party!) with the leftover cranberries from one of my recipes, and made an ice luminary for my front steps! Maybe I'll get on the ball and take a picture of it all lit up this evening (that is, if I can stand to be outside that long!).

Here's the status of my Christmas cookie baking:

Done:
Peanut butter blossoms
Rosemary shortbread trees
Spritz cookies
Cranberry walnut pinwheels (hence, the leftover cranberries!)

To do yet:
Sachertortes
Peanut butter toffee turtle cookies
Christmas wreaths
Butterscotch haystacks

And maybe...
Peanut butter chocolate chunk monster cookies
Almond bark pretzels and pb ritz cracker sandwiches
Another round of caramel crispix, because we ate the first one!

Hmm...that's a lot of baking! I better get back to work so that I can be done for the day and start on the next batch of cookies!

What a fabulous show!



I went back home to see my friend, Liz, in the Christmas show The Winter Wonderettes. It was held at the old Sherburn Theater which, for those of you that know of the theater and remember it being fairly run-down and dirty (for those of you that are from the cities, think the cheap theater that used to be on Larpenteur, but even worse!), has been renovated and cleaned up to the point that it looks just awesome! The outside has a new front, the floors are no longer sticky, the seats all work - and have been re-stuffed and reupholstered, and one of the high schoolers designed an entire set of stage lights (after raising funds from the community), which were used for this play but will remain with the theater.

The show was fabulous - a ton of fun, the girls (four high school friends) were hilarious, but the details were even more amazing. The set was great - including massive candy canes made out of PVC piping that flanked the stage and a real fireplace! When we got to the theater we were greeted by a doorman dressed in suit and tie, and top hat! The costumes (wigs included!) were a riot. And best of all, I'm still singing songs from the show!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Oh no! George is leaving Grey's!


Check it out here!

Introducing Libby!


No, she's not ours. She's my parents' new kitty - they rescued her from the family farm (namely, from brother's overly-rambunctious dog, Joey) after they discovered that her mama had been accidentally run over. She quickly escaped from her box (which was covered with a laundry basket, smart kitty) and ran down to the basement. She lived there for a good few weeks before finally getting brave enough to make friends with my parents. When we went home for Thanksgiving, we brought Syd with us. After the initial meeting (which resulted in both cats scrambling in opposite directions) they slowly started to figure each other out. They weren't exactly friends by the end of the weekend, but they had at least come to some kind of understanding. If Libby got too close to Syd, he'd raise his paw and she'd take off, but as soon as he turned around to leave she'd run after him. I think she make actually win him over when we go home for Christmas! If nothing else, it's fun to have a kitten around to play with for awhile and amusing to watch Syd avidly watch her!

Our Christmas-y weekend!

The hubby and I had a Christmas date night this weekend. We had tickets to see The Blenders "Holiday Soul" concert at the Pantages theater in downtown Minneapolis, so we decided to try out the fairly new Seven, which is actually in the same building block as Pantages. Seven has a swanky steakhouse on the main floor and a sushi bar/lounge on the upper floor. We had reservations for the sushi lounge, but were happily surprised that you could still order from the steakhouse menu from upstairs (we stuck with sushi, however we may be back to try out the steak!). The atmosphere was great- swanky, but still fun and almost intimate, plus we appreciated the flat screen TVs mounted on the walls in the lounge (we were able to catch the end of the Florida-Alabama game). The food was awesome, and they had a full (top-shelf) bar, a sizable wine list, and a large sake list. All in all, a great start to the evening.

At the concert we ran into our good friends Ryan & Emily, and the rest of Em's sister-in-law's family. It was a complete surprise, made even funnier by the fact that they were sitting just a row behind us and about 20 seats down from us! The concert was AMAZING! We had seen The Blenders' holiday concert a couple of years ago, but this year was just as good!! In a moment of weakness I purchases 4 of their CDs, including their new Songs from the Soul CDs (which they had performed a lot of songs from that night), and two of their older Christmas CDs (which I just had copies of from my mom). So now I'm all set to groove to the Blenders for the rest of the holiday season (and then some!).

We also picked up our fresh Christmas tree Saturday morning (we did the usual - walked a half a block over to the tree lot located in the parking lot of our A&W, picked out the tree, and David hauled it back to our house on his back! and as usual, I offered to help, but he refused!) The tree was pretty cold, so we got it set up in the tree stand, filled it with warm water, and left it for 24 hours to thaw out and open up. We got it decorated during the Vikings game the next day, which involved 3 broken strands of lights, one trip to Walgreens to buy replacements, and multiple containers of ornaments (almost all of which did make it onto the tree!). I'm especially excited about the tree this year because we have ornaments from my grandma's tree (gingerbread houses and people - made out of Styrofoam, not actual gingerbread) and from my great great aunt Lucille's tree (crazy beaded Styrofoam balls and such). It makes for an eclectic mix of ornaments, which I love.











Syd likes to hide under the tree- I think he actually believes that one little branch is enough cover to completely conceal him!

We also managed to finish the Christmas cards, and I made up my Christmas cookie list, however I haven't started baking yet (and considering the length of the list, I had better get at it!).

This weekend we're heading back home for part of the weekend to go see my pseduo-little-sister's musical, The Winter Wonderettes. Liz and three of her friends are putting on the musical at the old Sherburn theater, as a fundraiser to keep the theater running - tix are only $10, so those of you from the area should try to attend!! Tickets are available at: Farmers State Bank of Trimont, Farmers State Bank of Sherburn, Triumph State Bank, Peterson Anthony Insurance in Farimont. The shows are Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30pm!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Holidazzle 2008

My parents came up to the cities for the Friday night after Thanksgiving and my dad suggested that we go to the Holidazzle parade. It was actually fairly nice out, so the parade was pleasant (compared to the frigid temperatures we experienced last year!). My parents, however, thought that this year's parade wasn't as good as the last one they had been to, which was right after the Holidazzle started. Evidently back then it was common to see TV and radio personalities walking in the parade, as opposed to the mass corporations that simply sponsor a float. Either way, it was fun!




Monday, December 01, 2008

YES!!

Just found out that my second paper has been accepted into the Journal of Immunology! Now I just need to actually write the remaining 2 papers, not to mention my thesis, and I'll be DONE!