Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving Was a Success...minus the turkey:)

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Ours was wonderful! We are so lucky to have so many great friends in Des Moines to spend time with. It made it much easier to be away from home and family. We did first eat lunch up at the university. They put on a great meal and it was nice to have someone else do all the work. But the real fun came when a group of our friends came over to our place to munch on some more food and play games. We all brought food so that we could gorge once again and take leftovers home. The food was so good! Yes the turkey was two hours late and a little dry, but a little gravy made it all edible:). It was my first turkey and quite the learning experience for me. I tried making a 21 pound turkey. A little hefty for my first attempt. Pretty sure the middle wasn't quite thawed when I put it in the oven. I thought it was until I reached my hand in to get all the giblets out. It did look pretty which should count for something.

Nate and Cambri helping me get ready for dinner.

We just did dinner buffet style. The clear dish in front was some yummy dessert that Nathalie made and I am pretty sure I ate at least half of it. But then again I ate half of everything else on the table too:).

Looks like we need to get a bigger place.

I made everyone do a Thankful Turkey.

Nate and Caleb's true colors shining through.

(The lighting in this picture makes my walls look horrible).

Now it is time to start feeling the Christmas Spirit. Only 17 days until we go home!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thought I would share...

I am always on the search for new recipes that aren't too crazy, but still a little different than my usual menu. I got this recipe from the Rachael Ray Show. It is just a turkey meatloaf but you put apples, celery and stuffing in it. And you serve it with apple cider gravy. It turned out so yummy! It does make a ton so if you aren't feeding many you may want to cut it in 1/2. Otherwise you are going to have to get really creative with left over meatloaf.
Turkey and Stuffing Meatloaf
2 McIntosh or Gala apples, peeled and cut into small dice
1 TBSP lemon juice
2 lbs. ground turkey
3-4 ribs celery finely chopped
1 med onion finely chopped
1 TBSP poultry seasoning
1 large egg
Salt and Pepper
2 cups chx stock
2 cups stuffing mix
1 TBSP olive oil
1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In large bowl add apples and lemon juice and toss. Add turkey, celery, onion, poultry seasoning, egg, salt and pepper.
3. In medium bowl add stock and the stuffing. Toss around and let stuffing soak up the liquid. Then add to bowl with turkey.
4. Shape into loaf or use bread pan. Coat with olive oil.
5. Bake about 1 hour.
Apple Cider Gravy
4 TBSP Butter
4 TBSP Flour
2 cups apple cider
2 cups chx stock
salt and pepper
Melt butter. Stir in flour, cook 1 min. Then whisk in cider and stock. Let thicken and season.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Friday Night...

In order to go on a few dates a month Nate and I have joined up with some of our friends to share babysitting nights. We end up babysitting once a month and get two date nights out of it. It is pretty crazy since the babies are all about 6 weeks apart. We only babysit for two hours and let me tell you it has made me appreciate those with twins and triplets. But the date nights are much appreciated. We do love our little Cambri but it is nice to be able to give my full attention to my hubby. And it is nice to have his full attention.
This last Friday we had lots of fun... We watched Nate make dinner.
And yes Cambri is only 6 weeks older than little George. George just went in for his 4 month check and he is under the 20% in both height and weight. And his head is in the 6%. Then there is Cambri who is in the 90% for height and weight. Not sure about her head but pretty sure it is huge. This picture just emphasizes their size difference.

We read books.

We played the piano.

We ate toys. And we ate George's head.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Many Sounds of our Little Bunny...

This girl is complete entertainment! Last time we went to Cambri's well child check the dr. asked if she was starting to make consonant sounds...not even close. Instead she growls. She is a weird little girl but we love her.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Take a look at this...

Nate and I were watching David Letterman the other day. They had weird human tricks on. You have to watch this video. It gives me the willies really. But it is one of those things that you just can't help but watch.

Dealing with the inevitable cold weather...

I have been having a little (ok maybe a lot) of anxiety the last few weeks knowing that winter is on its way. It has not been long enough for me to forget just how cold and miserable last winter was. I still remember very clearly one night as I walked outside around 8:00pm and the wind pretty much cut right through me. Not even my big puffy coat could protect me. And let me remind you that I was pregnant and running on a warmer tempurature than usual. As I was walking to my car I thought- "He (Nate) can't make me live here forever. I won't do it." So I am doing my best to make winter bearable. In order to do this I have decided to start getting ready for Christmas early. What better way to deal with cold weather than pretty Christmas lights, yummy ginger bread men, and presents!

Thanks to Nikki she helped to kick off the celebrations... A few of the girls got together at her place to decorate cookies and also help her decorate her Christmas tree. We also all brought cookies and did a little swap. Yummy! Nikki had the party because she wanted to help with the feelings of "homesickness" during the holidays. And thank you miss Nikki. It was the perfect way to kick off the holiday season. And I need to give her props for being the best hostess. She made delicious soup, rolls, and hot cocoa and gave all of us little favors. You can see them in the picture below.

I also spent some time hanging out at Hobby Lobby (which is now my new favorite store) buying some stuff to make fun Christmas decorations. Once I get them all done I will share the pictures with you. And don't worry I didn't forget about Thanksgiving. I bought a few things to spruce up the apartment for this holiday as well. And once the holidays are over I plan on using my newly learned skill of knitting (ok so I haven't learned yet but I plan to) to make cute scarves and beanies. I am going to make winter so much fun I will be sad to see it end:).

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Ok I will admit to being tagged...

I am not the best and following through with being tagged, but I have been tagged by two people now (Chels and Becky) so I figure I should do it. But I am going to make a few small changes. I am going to combine the two tags and I am going to decrease the amount of info I must share. So here it goes-

My 5 Favorite Shows-

1. Heroes (This is what Nate and I watch for Family Night)

2. The Biggest Loser (I would love to be Jillian!)

3. Desperate Housewives (I know I probably shouldn't admit to it but I am hooked)

4. What Not to Wear (We only have bunny ears so I never get to watch it unless it is on when I run on the treadmill. But since I never do that I pretty much never watch it:)).

5.The Today Show

My 5 Favorite Restaurants-

1. Zuppas (I will be a making a trip there when I am home for Christmas)

2. Trostel's Dish (An expensive restaurant I will probably never eat at again)

3. Olive Garden

4. Cosi (lots of good memories!)

5. Grandma Tucker's house:)

5 Things that happened yesterday-

1. Taught a BodyPump class at the gym.

2. Played with my baby girl. We got her laughing so hard yesterday that she was snorting. Quite possibly the cutest thing ever.

3. Braved Wal-Mart (which you should never do on a Saturday afternoon)

4. Helped my friend Nikki make cute aprons (I did more watching than doing)

5. Babysat baby Evan.

5 Things I am looking forward to-

1. December 17th because I get to go home for the holidays! And December 16th....Happy Anniversary to me (and Nate).

2. Next Spring. I am having anxiety about going through another miserable Iowa winter.

3. 2016- The year Nate will finally be done with school and his residency. At least we hope so:).

4. I must have short term memory loss because I am really looking forward to being pregnant again. Don't get too excited because it isn't going to happen anytime soon. At least not on purpose.

5. Owning a home. Due to item #3 I have a feeling this won't happen for a very long time.

5 Things I love about Fall-

1. Walking through the leaves that have fallen on the sidewalk.

2. All the yummy smells (Pumpkin, Apple spice, Cinnamon etc)

3. It isn't Winter

4. The anticipation for the holidays.

5. Seeing the colors of the leaves. Even though it happens every year it still seems so amazing every year.

5 Things on my wish list-

1. A new KitchenAid mixer. Mine just broke.

2. A vacation to somewhere warm and tropical.

3. Money to buy new clothes.

4. A Chi hair straightener.

5. Porcelain doll skin. I am so jealous of those that have smooth beautiful skin. Mine has gotten better since having a baby, but it will never be anything amazing.

5 Random facts about me-

1. I commented earlier about the show "What Not to Wear". I do love watching it but truthfully I want to be on the show. I even looked up the info on-line yesterday about getting on the show. I want one of my friends to nominate me (so feel free anyone that feels so inclined). If you are chosen to be on the show you get an all expense paid trip to NYC and a $5000 shopping spree to improve the wardrobe, hair and make-up. Pretty much a dream come true. To be honest I probaly would be a great candidate. I pretty much never get ready. My closet is full of a lot of ugly clothe. And the clothes I do have don't really fit me that well.

2. I am horrible at multi-tasking. Especially when it comes to being on the computer. Nate will try to talk to me while I am typing and either I completely ignore him or I find myself typing what he is saying. Usually I am ignoring him, but don't realize it until he gets frustrated. It is best I don't have a computer at home all day cause I find it too easy to get sucked into the internet even if I don't really have a reason to be using it.

3. I never finish reading books. I have started so many books but usually get bored about half way through them. And yes this applies to all the Harry Potter books and the Twilight series. I think I made it through a fourth of the first Harry Potter book. I did get through the first Twilight book and half way through the second one (I don't remember the titles), but just couldn't get hooked enough to finish. This pretty much banned me from many conversations as it seemed everyone was comparing themselves to the characters in the book when they first came out. The ironic thing is when asked to list my hobbies I usually put reading as one of them.

4. I am going to learn how to knit. At least I am going to try. There is a lady that comes to the Silver Sneakers class that I teach on Mondays who is going to help me. She made Cambri the cutest sweater that is just now fitting her and I love it!

5. I was homecoming queen in high school. I do realize that many of you already know this. I do not share this to brag because lets be honest it really isn't that cool. Let me say that when I first found out that I had been nominated I was really bummed. This meant that I was going to have to get up in front of the whole school and do a bunch of dumb things to try and win votes. This was unappealing for many reasons. A- I hate being in front of people when I am supposed to make them laugh. I am so not good at this. B- There were a lot of girls in my grade that loathed me. I perferred to not give them anything to make fun of. C-I had already attempted to run for class vice president and lost. I felt like I was going to have to relive that whole situation. Turns out the day of the assembly when I was supposed to get up in front of the whole school and make a fool of myself I was in California with the volleyball team. So one of the guys in my grade put on a wig and pretended to be me. I do remember that the night it was announced that I won someone bent the antenna on my car. Gotta love high school!

And there you have it. A lot of useless information about me. I am tagging all my sister-in-laws because they always say they don't have anything to blog about. And I want to get to know more about you all. The fact that you are a part of the Rencher family I know that you have a lot of fun stuff to share. So Janelle, Jenae, Mindy and Michelle tag you are it. And since i know you probably won't read this I will make sure to put it on your blog that you have been tagged.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween Parties #2 and #3

We had such a fun Halloween. I think it helped to have it fall on a Friday. Last year I am pretty sure I was home alone while Nate was studying for a test.

Our cute little care bear family at the church Halloween party.

Here is my contribution to the party at Annie's house. I saw this idea on the Today show.

The cutest Care Bear ever! Cambri is always so intrigued by the camera that she is rarely smiling for pictures. She always looks like a deer in the headlights.

Favorite part of our costumes.

My friend Nikki made the cutest bee costume. This picture doesn't show her wings very well or her awesome yellow shoes! And yes that is Nathalie in the middle. Her costume was hilarious. Again this pic doesn't show the best part. She stuffed her bum to make it look like she had some junk in the trunk. And I should never be laughing in a picture. I look like a cheese ball.

Saturday night we went to a murder mystery dinner. Nate played the role of a singer. I was an aspiring actress. I finally had a reason to wear the leather pants one of my friends gave me.
Bunny finally has hair!