Friday, December 21, 2012

Winter Reading List

What's on your reading list this winter?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Taco Tuesday

(via Etsy)

Peter and I have had a heavy heart these last few days, and I know you all have, too.

On Facebook yesterday, my friend Katie shared the eulogy for a little boy named Noah, given by his mom at his funeral. Noah's mom mentioned all kinds of wonderful things he loved - Wii Super Mario Brothers, his sweet twin sister Arielle, and tacos. In that brilliant way that only kids can do, Noah came up with one of the greatest slash careers ever: doctor/soldier/taco factory worker.

One of Katie's friends commented that she was going to make tacos for dinner in honor of Noah, and I thought, yes, that I can do.

It's easy to see why Noah loved them so: tacos are fun, and they bring people together. They can make an otherwise ordinary Tuesday seem extra special. Picking from communal bowls, eating something messy in front of people you love - these things seem silly at the moment, but that probably means we all need a taco dinner more than ever.

So tonight, I'll be making tacos in honor of Noah, and everyone else that we lost in Sandy Hook last Friday. I'd like to invite you to join me, if you are so inclined.

P.S. Here are a few easy recipes, in case you're stuck.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

All is Bright

I took the 8:30 train this morning into work, instead of my usual 7:55. Only, I didn't officially decide to take the later one until 7:52. I was all ready to go, and then I just didn't leave. Thirty minutes of unexpected time at home! I watered my tree, finished my coffee, read some blogs. Stolen time is glorious time.

*     *     * 

We've decided on Montreal for our winter trip. A few years back we toyed around with going to Canada, and now it's happening! I'm excited to be getting a fake-Paris fix. We have lots of restaurants on our list (too many!), but we could probably use a few activities to do in between all that eating. If you have a favorite museum or attraction, please share!

P.S. Happy Santa Lucia Day! Any Kirsten fans in the house? I wanted the opportunity to wear a crown with candles so bad when I was a kid. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tomato Sauce Alternatives

This is one of the more random tidbits I've blogged about, but I wanted to share a few "sauce" alternatives for pizzas that don't involve tomatoes (darn you, tomato allergies!). Many of these also work as pasta sauces!

The one has pureed butternut squash as a base (it also has caramelized onions, salami, goat cheese, and parsley). I've also used:

These might sound super strange, but I promise, they're really good! Especially the tapenade :) 

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Best Way to Spread Christmas Cheer

Big weekend! We're going to get our Christmas tree and attend the Harvard-Radcliffe Chorus concert tomorrow night. Our friend Greg is performing in it, and I'm so excited to cheer him on! Ladies, he is single and wonderful. (I know very few single people in Boston, which is too bad because I harbor a deep desire to set people up and then have them go on an amazing date and then have them live happily ever after. Are you a single lady in Boston who loves history teachers?! Email me.)

As for the tree trimming, I always have grand plans for Peter and I to sing along to Christmas carols, lovingly looking into each others eyes, exclaiming that this is the most wonderful time of the year. In reality, I end up doing most of the ornament hanging while he watches football/tracks his fantasy football players/trash-talks his fellow fantasy football league members. And I am all, "Don't you CARE where this sparkly bauble goes?! DON'T YOU CARE."

So! Last year, I got a bottle of Prosecco and set up a big antipasto plate with lots of cheese, salumi, olives, and pickles. And even though we were both just in the same room, doing our own thing, we came together for cheese and to fill up the wine glasses. It was (slightly) more magical than in years past, and I intend to do it again.

Speaking of managing holiday expectations, I loved these two posts on that very subject. Happy reading, and happy, happy weekend!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Quick Craft: Holiday Pillows from Napkins

I love all the special holiday pillows from Pottery Barn and West Elm so much, but I stopped myself from buying them. Making pillows is so easy - all I needed was some fabric.

At Marshalls, I took a peak at the seasonal tea towels and cloth napkins, and found these pretty ones from April Cornell. I got four for only $5.99! I made a simple envelope pillow cover (using some old Ikea fabric for the back), and put it over 16 inch pillow fillings I already had.

There are still two napkins left. Hopefully I'll get my act together to make a few little stockings or ornaments, too!

P.S. Even easier napkins turned pillow :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Bring Out the Holly

We're not getting our tree until this weekend, but the rest of my Christmas goodness is out in full force! An amaryllis bulb will hopefully sprout up from the above in the next few weeks, and my village and carolers are all set up.

And! I have grand plans to expand the post card heart into a Christmas tree once holiday cards start to arrive. Send me your baby's photos and snowy scenes in the name of festive decor!
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