Friday, December 31, 2010

A Tribute to 2010

Niagara Falls.
Broken Arm.
Morton Salt Girl. Basketball. School Bus.
10th Anniversary
. Namaste. Soccer.
Rondo Alla Turca.
Wisdom Teeth. Ballet. Shoe Tree.
Sock Monkey. Orange Trees. Teeter Totter.
First Lost Tooth.
Good Times.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

She (still) Loves to Write

A year ago I wrote a post titled, Some Things Never Change.

Well, in case you were wondering, that's still the case:

[Alexandra, Dec. 2010]

Someday she'll publish a book, mark my words.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas 2010

[Elisabeth's new bells.]

T'was a merry time, indeed.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

(Another) Top Secret Project

So, my plan for a fun last day with Jennifer was completely foiled when I came down with a 24-hour flu bug. Ugghhhhh.

Thankfully though, I had Jennifer there to step in a take care of my children, especially Elisabeth.

I perked up by nightfall, and we were able to have some fun with the camera (our favorite pastime). And....we were able to get some work done on a top-secret project of ours. (My life is full of top-secret projects, I tell you. But don't worry, I'll spill the beans later this week or next.)

Goodbye Jennifer!

Monday, December 27, 2010

On Holiday (still)

[Laughing, not crying.]

Christmas was perfect - details to come soon. But for now I'm going to go enjoy one last day with my sister, Jennifer, before she heads back down to Los Angeles.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Holiday Greeting

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve 2010

Alexandra wrote a letter to Santa that she plans to leave out tonight with some fudge and milk. She told him all about the big fudge vs. cookie debate at our house and how she has been very good all year. But the part that really touched my heart is at the end, where she wrote, 'I was wondering if you could stop Elisabeth from banging her head just for one day. Please.'

Is that not the sweetest? Rather than asking for something on her own behalf, she asked that her little sister be relieved of one of her biggest problems. Unfortunately, I don't think Santa will be able to deliver that gift, but....there is some good news.

This week we got in touch with Dr. Kurtzberg at Duke University and are making plans to take Elisabeth back east this winter to receive the rest of her stem cells! And who knows, maybe - just maybe - they'll be able to help her out in ways that even Santa Claus can't.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Jennifer's here!

Let the fun begin!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Reading Time

Christmas break, the perfect time to snuggle up with a good book.

I do believe that I snapped the picture above right after Elisabeth bent over and tried to chomp down on Lorelai's knee - to which Lorelai went 'ouch!' in a very high pitch voice. Elisabeth thought it was hilarious (and promptly tried to bite her again.)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Steam Cleaned?? (pretty please)

Donald will be home at lunch time today to start his 6-day Christmas vacation. What do you think the chances are I can convince him to clean the family room carpet before Jennifer arrives tomorrow?

(I know that Jennifer appreciates steam cleaned carpet just as much as I do!)

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Sorenson Family Igloo

Snow has been falling here in my neck of the woods, so it looks like we're going to have a white Christmas! Yippee! And a double yippee because my sister, Jennifer, will be here and she has never experienced a white Christmas.

In other news, check out this awesome igloo that Donald and the girls made:

5 days and counting!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Fa la la la la....

Pictured above is an old Christmas card from the 1950's that my Dad's family sent out. The four of them (my dad, my uncle, and my grandparents) make up all the members of the 'choir'. Clever, huh?

Anyways, I have heard word from my friends at Cleval Arts ( that a winner for the giveaway was selected on Thursday. Drumroll.....congrats Sandy O.!!! I know they already contacted you, but I wanted to shout out a hip-hip-hooray to you too. Enjoy your print!

I hope you are all having a magical Christmas season. We have had a couple very exciting new developments take place in our family this past week and I am feeling over-the-moon about it all.

Over-the-moon-happy is the way to be.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


I have had several people ask for this Brunch Braid recipe (Hello Whitney & Margie!), so I thought it best just to post it here for the masses.

Also, I must state that this is not my recipe but one that I got from my sister. (You can all thank her now.) (I'll go first,'thanks Jennifer!') (And you can all thank my brother, David, for emailing it to me.) (I'll go first again, 'thanks David!')

Ham 'N Eggs Brunch Braid

> 4 ounces Cream Cheese
> 1/2 cup milk
> 8 eggs, divided
> 1/4 teaspoon salt
> Dash ground black pepper
> 1/4 cup red bell pepper, chopped
> 2 tablespoons sliced green onion with tops
> 1 teaspoon butter or margarine
> 2 packages (8 oz. each) refrigerated crescent rolls
> 1/4 pound thinly sliced deli ham
> 2 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded (1/2 cup)

Preheat oven to 375.

Place cream cheese and milk in 2-QT bowl. Microwave on HIGH 1 minute. Whisk until smooth. Separate 1 egg; reserve egg white. Add the yolk and remaining 7 eggs, salt and black pepper to batter bowl; whisk to combine.

Add chopped bell pepper and onions to egg mixture. Melt butter in frying pan over low heat. Add egg mixture; cook, stirring occasionally, until eggs are set but still moist. Remove pan from heat.

Unroll 1 package of crescent dough; do not separate. Arrange longest side of dough across width of 12in. x 15in. baking stone. Repeat with remaining package of dough. Use a rolling pin to seal perforations. On longest sides of baking stone, cut dough into strips 1 1/2 inches apart, 3 inches deep using a knife (there will be 6 inches in the center for the filling).

Arrange ham evenly over middle of dough. Spoon eggs over ham. Shred cheddar cheese over eggs.

To braid, lift strips of dough across to meet in center, twisting each strip one turn. Continue alternating strips to form a braid. Brush lightly beaten egg white over dough using a pastry brush. Bake 25-28 minutes until deep golden brown. Cut into slices.

Yields 10 servings

Bon Appetit!

***And don't forget that today is the last day to enter to win the Claude Coats print!! Click here for details.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

3 Simple Ideals

[Our new Tree topper. I love it.]

I have been thinking a lot lately about what characteristics I admire most in a person. Here is what I have come up with:

> Hard working.
> Optimistic.
> Firm in their beliefs - whatever they may be.

So I have talked with my girls about living their lives with these ideals in mind. Because I think that those 3 simple ideals lead to happiness.

And what I want most in my life is for my children to be happy.

Monday, December 13, 2010

What a weekend, what a weekend!!

This weekend...

> Lorelai lost a tooth.
> Alexandra performed in the Nutcracker (4 times over).
> Lorelai performed in a piano recital.
> We paid off our van.
> Donald and I watched the season finale of The Amazing Race (my favorite show).

Good times all around.

***Don't forget to enter to win a print of a painting by my grandfather, Claude Coats. Click here to enter.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Christmas Giveaway!!

As you may (or may not) know, my grandfather, Claude Coats, was an artist and imagineer at Walt Disney Studios for 54 years. He was even honored with the Disney Legend award in 1991. Needless to say, his artwork is magical and now you can have a print of your own! is happy to be giving away a print of the Christmas scene pictured above. Isn't it just charming?!

Hurry, hurry, and go enter to win!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Curling Success!

* **

Now I get to re-roll them for the next 4 nights.....

Oh well, it's all in the good name of show business.*

* **

My Little Porcupine

Alexandra survived her first day of wearing curlers at school. You can imagine how terrified she was at even the thought of getting out of the car in the morning. (Yes, there were tears involved.) But she did it...and at the end of the day she even had a smile on her face and a bounce in her step!

* *(Still waiting until tonights rehearsal to unwind those curlers - all 55 of them - and see how the ringlets turned out!)

* **

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Curls: Attempt #1

* ** *
* Alexandra has to have tight curls for the Nutcracker performances this weekend. This was my trial run:

I was so proud of myself. Look at those gorgeous curls!

But not everyone was so impressed with my handy-work. Alexandra's curls were given a huge FAIL when inspected at the studio.

They are

a) too soft; not stiff enough.
b) too fat.

I was a little annoyed at first, but the truth is, their attention to detail is what puts on such a flawless and spectaular performance.

So last tonight I gave it another go. I doubled the amount of curlers and saturated her hair in spray gel. She'll have to wear them at school all day today, at rehearsal tonight, at school tomorrow, and then - at tomorrow's dress rehearsal - we'll take them out and see if she gets a passing grade.

I hope, I hope. Fingers crossed. And all that jazz...

** * *
* *

Monday, December 6, 2010

Winter Ballet Recital

* * *
* *Dance, dance, dance. * **
* * *

[Lorelai on stage after the recital.]
[I think that girl in the background is trying to protect her anonymity.]
** * *
This is a BIG week. Alexandra will be performing in The Nutcracker this weekend (4 stunning performances). That means rehearsals every night. It also means curlers. Lots and lots of curlers.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Deck the Halls Week: Day 6

* ** *
* *
Trimming the tree
on a Sunday morning.
* * **
* * *

Alexandra: "Do Christmas trees think?"

Me: "No."

Alexandra: "Oh, 'cuz that would be cool if they did."

Friday, December 3, 2010

Deck the Halls Week: Day 5

* * * ** *
* ** The Kitchen * *
* ** * * *


And remember that tonight is the performance of

Handel's 'Messiah'.

You don't want to miss this....the choir sounds amazing!

(For info, click on My Upcoming Perfomances on the navigation bar.)
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