Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Black Friday 2011

We did not shop on Black Friday.
We did not brave the crowds.
We did not stand in line.
We did not cut coupons.
We did not getup before dawn, in the dark of night.
We did not stay up until midnight waiting for the doors to open.
We did not get FIRED UP for the HOT sales.

We did end the day with a HOT deal of our own, after dark.
We did have a FIRE in our backyard fire pit, to enjoy the unseasonably warm weather.

We did burn the Black Friday sales circulars to start the fire.
We did stay up until nearly midnight, after our soon-to-be moving afar favorite neighbors' Mindy and Derek stopped by with our favorite neighbor dogs, Emma and Paxton.

No jacket required!
No credit cards either!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving 2011

Our Thanksgiving started as the sun was rising. Mark and the Twinners headed to White Bear Lake to cheer Auntie Kelly on at the finish line of the "Fast before the Feast" 5 K. Back in the solitude of our warm and peaceful home, I started my morning with a fresh brewed cup of Caribou with heavy whipping cream (purchased for various t-day recipes). Soon the Thompson's would gather with us. This was Kelly's first ever 5 K. Awesome job! Way to go!

Looking fine at the finish line!

Meanwhile, I got this 19 pound bad boy oven ready with fresh vegetables, fresh chopped herbs, loads of unsalted butter, an one large Reynold's oven bag.

I set the table with wedding linen, china, and crystal.

I added spray painted gourds, thrifted and sprayed candle holders, and my favorite sterling-silver thrifted platter, along with Aurthur Court napkin rings.

The appitizer table was put into place, and I added the appropriate (spray painted) decor to my ever changing IKEA shelves.
Two for whom I give THANKS!

ME! Proud hostess with my perfectly browned and moist bird. I think we are both glowing.

Say grace and let's eat.

"Bi-ness, Goodness we are fed. Thank you Lord for our daily bread"

Translation from the version Mark has been saying since his own childhood.

"By his goodness we are fed. Thank you Lord for our daily bread."

Dean thought he was very funny waving around the giant drumstick and pretending to eat it.

Fun and games.


Happy Thanksgiving ya'all!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Before Thanksgiving!

Tomorrow we are hosting Mark's family for Thanksgiving.
Today I took the day off to play in the kitchen.

So... here is a running look at my day!

  • It started out like any other. I dropped the kids off for school (except I was in jeans and boots). I was armed with a list for the day.

  • Next stop, the Caribou by the Cub for a LARGE 1/2 caf, skim latte (free with a coupon).

  • On to Cub for a 19 pound turkey and everything else you need to host this all American Holiday. 19 pounds is more then we need, but we like leftovers. Boy.. big turkeys are kinda spendy... even with that $10 off coupon.

  • Headed to AT&T to get my Blackberry fixed. I was disconnected for a few hours. God Bless my brother-in-law Pat (who works at AT&T) for ALWAYS coming to my phone rescue.

  • Stopped at Banana Republic to try and exchange a holiday skirt. Left empty handed.

  • Made a trip to Walmart to pick up a can of metallic spray paint. I had spray painted my fall gourds for my Thanksgiving table-scape tomorrow and wanted a third tone.

  • Stopped at the liquer store. The beujioli noevu (spelling) is here, and I thought I needed more beer....

  • Once home I unloaded the groceries and started cooking.

  • Mixed cream cheese, dill relish, and chopped dried beef for cracker spread/dip.

  • Ate too much dip.

  • Toasted the french bread for the stuffing, and browned the Italian sausage, celery and onions. Put it all in a throw away baking tray, and made room in the fridge.

  • Cooked the cranberries with apricot jam and a touch of Grand Mairinier, and put them in the serving dish when cool.

  • Sliced and diced and prepared the broccoli salad.

  • Spray painted my gourds in the garage.

  • Whipped up a batch of Chex Mix.

  • Poured a glass of wine for Mark and I, and threw a frozen pizza in the oven for supper.

  • Cleaned the upstairs bathroom.

  • Washed the entry rugs and swept the kitchen floor for the first time.

  • Added the leaf to the table.

  • Chopped up the vegetables to go inside and under the turkey tomorrow morning, and cut more for veggies and dip.

  • Decided to make green bean casserole with my variation of a Real Simple recipe with lots of butter, cream, and mushrooms (but NO CAMBELL'S SOUP). We will see if it gets any points tomorrow.

  • Baked up caramel puff corn... which Mark urged me to finish before everyone went to bed.

  • Gave the kids a bath and put them to bed.

  • Ate more Chex mix and watched Revenge on ABC.

  • Typed up this blog, while noting the piles of laundry that need to be put away from the corner of my eye, and figuring the rest can wait until tomorrow....

There is so much to be Thankful for.
Wishing you a day full of Thankful-ness too!

Tomorrow will be a lovely day.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Boy, A Bear, And the Google Gods

Everyone knows Dean's best bud is his blue Oscar bear.

No matter that Oscar had become flat from 4 years of unconditional love.No matter that his bow unraveled in the first year.
No matter that Oscar had lost an eye somewhere along the way. (Rumor has it Ramona the Cat ate it.)
Oscar and Dean had never been apart for more than a night, that is until after our recent trip to hang with the H-we's. Somehow, Oscar was left behind.

But Dean is 4 now.
He is a big boy. He can sleep with out Oscar.
Of course Gretchen would send him packing back to B.P. when she found him.

But she didn't find him!
She searched high. She searched low.
P and M looked inside and out.
Oscar was NO WHERE to be found.

And so, Dean did his best to tough it out. He was brave.
Marly and I surprised him with a new stuffed polar bear. We named him Ole.
Dean did well, until the sniffles hit. He was a tired, sick boy who whined for his bear.

The truth is, I knew Dean would get over Oscar, but I wanted to be a mom who is a hero.
And so I prayed to the Google Gods on my lunch break at work.

Who was the manufacturer? "First Expressions"( No.. that's not it.)

Where was he purchased? "Macys"

(He was a gift from the former wife of one of my Dad's former business partners. I remembered the gift receipt was from Macy's.)

Okay... Okay.. "baby gifts teddy bear"

One step closer... "First Impression teddy bear"

E-Bay Rocks! (Crap - N0 longer for sale.)

Okay.. Okay.. "First Impressions Heart Bear" (Damn it...the pink one.)

"First Impressions blue bear 14 inches"
E-Bay JACKPOT!!! Buy it Now!

$10.94 by PayPals and 5 days shipping through the U.S. Postal Service....
...and it was like Santa came before Thanksgiving!
This is Dean with Oscar the Second.
A mere 7 days after his arrival and his bow is already missing, and he has nearly lost site in one eye.

Hoorah for Oscar.

I am mommy.

I am a hero!

**The funniest thing is we aren't quite sure if Dean understands this is a replacement of the original Oscar, or if he believes Oscar took a spa trip to a very talented teddy bear plastic surgeon.**

Monday, November 14, 2011

My Life

What have I been up to???
Everything and Nothing!!!

I am like that.
We Thomberg's are like that.
We go to work. We go to school. We play. We work at home. We spend time with each other. We spend time with friends. We spend time with family.

I do the laundry. I sweep the floor. We have friends to dinner from a filled crock pot. We go to church. We take a nap. We spent time in the yard. We chat with our neighbors. The kitchen floor is always dirty, except when we have friends to dinner.

We eat supper at our table after work every night. We eat healthy food. We eat crappy food that is fast and easy. We like McDonald's. We have fresh fruit on hand. We eat whole grain bread. We play games on the floor. We watch TV. I watch Revenge on Wednesday. We don't get the kids to bed on time. I should read more to the kids. We sometimes neglect to brush the kids' teeth. We take them to the dentist every 6 months. I will take the kids to get their flu mist today. I get behind on the laundry. The clean laundry piles up on the counter in the family room in the basement. We have never run out of clean underwear. I need to vacuum more. I should clean out every closet.

We get the mail. I like the Crate and Barrel catalog. I like the Pottery Barn catalog. I never send birthday cards anymore. I neglect to send a formal thank you for so many things I should. I forget to buy gifts in a timely manner. We got our family pictures taken for Christmas cards. I will buy stamps for the cards. I blog.....

I got pampered by Chris this past Saturday.

I forget things. We miss things. I NEED my SmartPhone. I do not know Mark's cell phone number by heart. I put Cindy's 31 Party on the WRONG day in my calendar. I am sad about this. I remember Cindy's home phone number from our childhood (I think?!?).

I do special things for others off-handedly. I do not plan well. I brought a latte to the day care director when it was Buy one Get one at Caribou. I hope to stop at Daycare Cindy's (our former provider) and bring her some coffee beans later today. I call friends I miss at the spur of the moment and meet them less then 20 minutes later for the best unexpected time together.

I leave Voice Mails for people I love. I still don't send a card with a stamp.

I am not perfect. I don't try to be. I am a good person.
I love.
I am loved.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

My name is Andrea, and I am a Spray-paint-aholic!

Derek watches me do it from his office window that faces our yard, "I knew she couldn't stay off the stuff for long!"

Kathy and Randy pause at the curb when walking Belle, "What could you possibly have left to do?"

Loren yells over, "Hey! Your polluting the environment again!"

The smokers next door pay no attention.

During open season (when the temperature ranges between about 60 to 80 degrees) you can find me on the lawn, circling my target on a big blue tarp, trigger finger poised, rhythmically waving my arm and wrist from side to side.

My poison - Zinsser primer and Krylon or Rustoleum in Almond, Khaki, Navy Blue, White, Bahama Gold, Ivy Green, Oil Rubbed Bronze, Ballerina Pink and more!

SPRAY PAINT! I have an addiction. The season has most likely come to a close this year, but come spring...Who knows what could be in store!

Dean's nightstand BEFORE - Thrifted from the Salvation Army.Dean's nightstand spray painted and coated in glaze.Dean's nightstand AFTER - The hardware got a shot of Oil Rubbed Bronze.Version two for Marly AFTER - White with ivory accents. The hardware is hit up with Satin Nickel. I wanted to highlight the details in her nightstand. Unfortunately the glaze on white paint made it look like it came from a smoker's house. Oh well..... Dean's dresser BEFORE- A hand me down from my Aunt Carol , who it got when she helped clean out the apartment of an elderly lady who died, named Cornelia, who had no close relatives. Carol gave it to my dad when he had and apartment in Mound, who then returned it when her moved he to St. Louis Park!

Dean's dresser AFTER facing my addiction.

I was lazy. I only repainted the drawers, and simply glazed the body, which I believe was coated in oil based paint that was still going strong. I also added new hardware.
Dean's headboard AFTER - Another free hand me down from Aunt Carol. I painted and glazed it to coordinate with everything else.

Four simple wooden chairs purchased from Good Will for $3.99 each AFTER a turn on my spray painting tarp. This table and chairs has found the perfect place in our family room. The table originally purchased at a garage sale for use in our townhome years ago. This winter I hope to add cool cushions to the chairs with a modern, yet nuetral print.

In case you are curious, I prefer Krylon over Rustoleum. Walmart has a decent selection of Krylon for the cheapest price.

In case you are curious, I prefer Zinsser primer over Kiltz. Home Depot carries Zinnser, Walmart does not.

In case you are curious, I prefer Krylon and Zinnser because of the way they spray from the can.

Not pictured - Marly and Dean each have solid wood kiddy tables and chairs free from an un-disclosed location. Marly's is painted a nuetral shade. Dean is blue and green to match his bedspread.

Also not pictures - Random spray painted thrifted decor items scattered through out my home.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Halloween 2011

I really enjoy Halloween.
I love pumpkins, decorating inside and out, and candy too.
I love costumes and dressing up.
My mom created/sewed outstanding costumes for Brett and I every year.
This year I put a lot of thought into creating original costumes for my own children.
Also this year, for the first time as a mom, I got to volunteer at the kids Halloween Party at their Montessori school.
And of course, we have created a tradition of having the Grandparents for supper before we go tick-or-treating. Grandpa Gary has mastered the art of pumpkin carving for Marly and Dean.
Grandpa has two eager helpers.

And many smiles.

For supper I made baked ziti and served apple pie from Jack's Bakey, with Cool Whip enhanced with orange food coloring and black sugar sprinkles. (I am a working mom after all, who has NOT found the time to bake, on top of everything else! Hey, the house was picked up!)

Marly and Dean in costume and giddy to get out the door, ready to visit all the neighbors on Riverview Lane. It was another beautiful night with a mild temperature.

Hello Kitty!

Hat and appliqued dress ordered from Etsy sellers.

Us girls found the Hello Kitty tights at Walmart. She has white gloves, but decided not to wear them.

Marly has a puffy white tail I attached on her back side. It is more bunny like then kitty like, but cute all the same.

Dean-o the Dino!

Hat purchased from Etsy.

The fleece pants (Carters) and sweater (Old Navy) have cut felt spikes and accents hand stitched with green embroidery thread on the arms, back, legs, etc - All done with love by me.

Dean has a tail also made from the blue and green felt. I attached elastic to it, so he could wear/tie it around his waste, but it wouldn't pull his pants off his skinny waiste.

He was the darn cutest thing when he wiggled his tail/butt!

Kitty and Dinosaur best buddies, on Halloween and every day.

Happy Halloween Ya'all!


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