Sep 29, 2007

I love contests!

Martha just announced a new contest! She and Macy's are offering a Thanksgiving weekend trip for four to New York with a $1000 shopping spree at Macy's, tickets to the Macy's Parade, dinner, hotel and airfare. You can enter once a day per e-mail address. Good luck! If you win, I expect an invite!

Sep 27, 2007


I'm not the best food photographer. So my Everday Food meals don't look that great. BUT, I promise you, they've been delicious.

Tuesday I made the stuffed chicken breast and roasted broccoli. This was actually a roaster chicken with bread/cranberries/celery stuffed under the skin. We would have enjoyed it more if the Jack's Wholesale Window man didn't spend THREE freakin' hours selling us windows that night. He kept mentioning how good the chicken smelled. No Mr. Shibba Shabba, I am not going to feed you dinner!

Yesterday was a night off because I had a meeting in GR.

Tonight I made Baked Ziti with crunchy Italian salad and homemade garlic bread. The bread was leftover from the stuffing for the chicken. I also used endive in the salad. That was a first for me. Luckily I could find it at Meijer Thrifty Acres. Brian had choir rehearsal, so I had to enjoy this meal on my own. The thing I love about Italian - great leftovers!

And just in case you've been feeling Maggie deprived - here she is riding on the merry-go-round. Her ears are just flapping away. She's getting bigger and bigger. She's lucky she's so adorable, because she still isn't allowing me any knitting time. I might have to learn to just pack things up and go to the coffee shop or a knit night to find some quality yarn time.

Oh, and as for DWTS talkback - I'm just not feeling that inspired this season. I watched all three nights, but wasn't wowed. I think it's beginning to feel like the same 'ole stuff. I'll give it another week, but I may not go out of my way to keep watching it.

Sep 25, 2007

Pick of the Week #6

So I know I'm behind on my "picks", but they have not been forgotten. This week, my pick is the Everyday Food magazine. Brian and I were introduced to this magazine when Linda handed over her entire library to us. We have definitely put them to use, many of the magazines have tabs and dog ears. The reason we love this magazine is that the recipes are generally fast, simple, delicious, and the ingredients are not hard to find. They try to use fresh ingredients and in-season produce, but it is easy enough to substitute from the cupboard. We look forward to the monthly feature for wine pairings and seasonings. Even though it's part of Martha Stewart's empire, the recipes are nowhere near as complicated as those in her feature magazine, Martha Stewart Living. We have subscribed for several years and still argue over who gets to read each new issue first.

This week, I am putting the newest issue to work. The foods featured this month are "Comfort Foods." I went to Meijer today and used their pre-made shopping list to purchase ingredients for five exciting meals. I won't give you all the details today, because I want to feature each of them on my blog. Maybe you'll be enticed to purchase this month's issue for yourself!

Sep 23, 2007

My first sister-in-law

Jeffrey married Jacqueline this past Friday. They had a beautiful ceremony in downtown GR. We celebrated the reception at the Amway Grand Plaza. Her mother and aunt put a lot of time into the planning and it payed off. They are now honeymooning in Hawaii. Sounds like a perfect getaway.

Here are all the kids. I got to spend a lot more time with David's girlfriend, Julie. It was nice to get to know her better. We got along quite well, which I'm pleased about because I'm quite sure she's going to be with the family for a long time.

Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures of Patty Sue! She did look stunning, though!

The rest of the weekend was spent with yard work and entertaining Maggie. We went to PetSmart and picked out her first doggy bed. She loved it so much that she woke me up at 5:30 am so that she could get out of her crate and go downstairs to sleep in the bed. She also met a 1 1/2 year old beagle at the pet store. They were so cute together.

Thankfully, the other dog was very calm. I hope Maggie turns out that well-behaved. You see she's just flopped down hoping to roll around together. We took her downtown Holland last night while we ate dinner at New Holland Brewery. She was very well behaved and socializes nicely with strangers. She pulled an escape act at the restaurant and slipped right out of her new harness. She didn't even try to run away until I noticed she was loose. That got a good laugh from the other customers.

Sep 18, 2007

Poop is not for eating.

When puppies eat other dog's poop as a delicacy, they risk:
a) bad breath
b) being too full for dinner
c) costing their parents $50 payment for fecal testing and treatment for coccidia
d) all of the above

Yes, the correct answer would be "all of the above."

Now, honestly, I've never seen nor allowed Maggie to eat another dog's poop. Maybe this happened when she wasn't on our watch, or perhaps at the puppy mill. Anyway, Maggie had a recheck with her vet today for her cough. She was given an asthma-type medication with the presumption that she has some persistent inflammation for the recent case of bronchitis. I brought them the stool sample that the office staff always seems to pine for, and low and behold, Maggie has a parasitic intestinal infection. It's pretty mild, so she hasn't had any of the symptoms such as weight loss or diarrhea. She should be cured shortly!

As for other dogs who have played with Maggie - they should be fine as I don't believe I have let any other canines snack on her poop!

Sep 15, 2007

In my dreams...

When I no longer require sleep at night, I'm going to use that extra time to knit this.

Great job Practical Polly! You're my idol.

Sep 13, 2007

Bad Mom

I am an awful person. We have a dog walker twice/week. Because of our vacation, this week’s schedule was switched around. I assumed I had assigned the walker to come on Wednesday and Thursday since I would be swamped Wednesday on my first day back to work. I left a message with her Tuesday to confirm for the next day.
Brian came home Wednesday to find the newspaper in her crate shredded to pieces and food still in the bowl. Miraculously, though, Maggie had not had a single “accident” in her crate. Our neighbor complained to Brian that she had been “crying all day.” The dog walker’s payment was still on the table. I was furious! I thought we should fire her for not showing up. I called and left an angry message.
When the walker returned my call, she told me she had Maggie down for Thursday and Friday. I found the scrap paper where I had recorded the dates…she was right. Apparently she never received my voicemail confirmation the night before.
Maggie survived, but I feel so guilty. I guess someone’s getting a new chew toy from a bad mom.

Sep 11, 2007

Vegas Baby!

We had an excellent vacation in Vegas. I learned a lot, laughed a lot, and gambled even more. It's too much to really relay everything, but I thought I would compose my top 10 most memorable moments of the trip (in no particular order).

1. Watching the musical fountain outside the mirage.
This is no Grand Haven fountain. The water shoots as high as the Mirage and sounds like cannons firing.

2. Winning on the slots.
I multiplied my money by 3x and 5x, but that still totalled less than $30. It's just fun to win, even if it's a few bucks.

3. The Fremont Street experience.
The strip is pretty fantastic, but Fremont Street feels like Vegas ought to. This is the "downtown" area. It's very much a party atmosphere and you don't have to walk miles in between casinos. They also have a kick ass light show at night.

4. Circ de Soleil.
We waited in line for cheap(er) tickets to Zumanity. This is their show that features the art of love. The acrobatics were amazing and beautiful. It was a great way to celebrate our 3 year anniversary.

5. Relaxing pool side with a strawberry daiquiri, Meagan and Mom.
Enough said.

6. Watching my dad win big at 3 card poker.
This is a great game that Ben introduced us to. We all seemed to win a lot easier at 3 card poker than blackjack. Blackjack just seemed to suck our money like a Dyson on animal hair. I even doubled my money at a 3 card poker table!

7. Seeing Jay Leno up close and personal.
His head really is larger than life.

8. Exploring Red Rock canyon.

9. Leaning over the Hoover Dam.
But I could definitely do without one more "damn dam" joke.

10. The greatest part of it all - sharing it with my parents as they celebrated their 30th anniversary on Sunday.

Thanks for the fantastic trip Mom and Dad!

Sep 3, 2007

Surprise #2! (and more puppy pics, of course)

We pulled off the 50/50/30 surprise party for my parents this Saturday. Unless they're good liers, they seemed totally oblivious. We invited both sides of the family and church friends out to the state park on Wampler's Lake for a BBQ and just good old fashioned fun. We had a great time playing ladderball, beanbag toss, fishing, eating, and laughing at Maggie harass the other three dogs.

Here's my immediate family.

My mom loved meeting her new grandpuppy.

Sunday was a day to kick back and relax. Meagan gave a good effort towards her first time skiing. Unfortunately, she just ended up swallowing a lot of lake water. Sorry Meagan, I know you'll hate this picture, but it's the best we got.

Maggie took a trip to Ann Arbor to meet our friend, Mark. Funniest comment I heard while walking her down the sidewalk was a guy with a group of girls - "I say 'awesome,' you say 'adorable'". And I don't want to hear anything about the U of M upset this past Saturday.

We finished up the weekend at the cottage on Whitefish Lake. The day seemed to pass by far too quickly. We BBQ'd with the family and our friends Carrie and Matt (with their Sheltie, Scout). Maggie had fun tormenting Scout and worked on her doggie paddle.

You probably won't hear from me again until we're back from our trip - Viva Las Vegas! I've got a lot to accomplish before we leave. I hope you all had an excellent weekend!