Monday, November 26, 2012

Good Things and More..

Thanksgiving weekend is over and so fast! I really savor these long holiday weekends and all the down time! Our Thanksgiving dinner was fun and we so enjoyed seeing our family and spending time with them all. My dad made us turkey breasts this year instead of the whole turkey and they were amazing. So good. All the sides seemed to be okay and the green beans above were a hit I think. The recipe was from one of those William-Sonoma leaflets they hand out each year at Thanksgiving. I've had it many years and decided to try this. It's basically browned butter with shallots, mushrooms and then tossed with the green beans then add toasted walnuts. I got so lucky finding these very fresh ones last Sunday at our town's farmers's market. The dish wouldn't have been as good without fresh beans. Finding organic ones, fresh, in November was totally luck... I love anything with walnuts of course being a Northern Cal girl.

Everyone provided wonderful wine and drinks and pies and rolls and so many good things. We had a huge feast. I wanted to include a pic of us all, but it was so hilarious, it could easily be included in one of those bad family photo books. My dear husband thought he'd do a auto-shot from a low chair, well needless to say it appears as though a bug took it and we are all legs, with a few heads. :{

The boys commandeered their own table. Cousins always have so much fun together.

My darling niece Veronica! She had the cutest dress with a leather skirt on.

I never have done Black Friday shopping, but was considering dashing out to see what I was missing when my youngest son, Griffin wanted to try making bear cookies from a recipe he saw. I figured it was probably a mob scene, so we stayed in and made these cute guys.

They're pretty easy. The recipe calls for refrigerator sugar cookie dough mixed with one cup of oatmeal. I used the healthier dough from Immaculate Baking Company because I hate the million ingredients on the usual brand. After you mix the two together, you freeze for 10 minutes and then roll different sized balls for the torso, head, arms, legs, ears and nose. Mini-chocolate chips are needed for the eyes and belly button. You then bake them at 350 degrees for about 14 minutes.

Griffin asked his friend Abby to help and they managed to make all of these themselves! They are quite the little bakers. I have to say the bears are yummy and not too sweet. With the Immaculate dough and the oatmeal, they are sort of healthy almost.

In other holiday news, (Yikes, I'm not ready), we got our tree! I know I can't believe it either. I am usually the kind that needs to ease into the next holiday. Thanks to a tip from my friend Jen we popped over to Whole Foods and checked out their $39.00 Noble Firs. We now have a gorgeous 7 foot tree!  Jen and I both love Nobles and here in Northern Cal, you have to buy them at a tree lot. They are usually grown only in the Pacific Northwest. Around here most folks get Douglas Firs. You can get Dougies at tree farms all around. I  however, have always preferred the firmer and more spare branches of the Noble. Usually they run closer to $75 and up. Right now all the Whole Foods 6-7 foot Nobles are that cheap.  So we got it early, putting it in water until next week when I can get my decorating mojo in gear for coming tide.


And last, but not at all least, some fun news. I was given two awards. One, the Sunshine Award, by sweet Adrienne, of The Rich Life on a Budget. Adrienne, is one of the nicest and most inspiring bloggers out there. She always makes me want to live smarter, greener and have the best life possible while not forgetting about what really makes life rich, as her aptly titled blog will attest! Please stop by and check her out. 

The other was the Leibster Award from the stylish Heather of stylemindchic. Another very cool person, Heather is a psychologist who shares her passion for life, travel and style. You will love escaping to her blog! Thank you so much Heather. I am very flattered to be chosen.

The rules of the Liebster award are to share 11 things about yourself and pass the award to two other, "Up and coming," bloggers. One of the requirements of winning the Sunshine award is answering questions given by the awarder. I think I'll answer Adrienne's and hopefully that will count for both.

Okay here goes Adrienne, I'll do my best.

1) What’s your favorite scent and how long have you been wearing it? 
I love Dolce and Gabbana's The One and have worn it for a few years. I also love Michael Kors' solid perfume for Summer. It has a gleam to it and is a little musky. It reminds me of Summers  when I was young.

2) Do you prefer city living or the country life? 

I live in a smallish town of a large suburb. I love that we can bike to almost everything or walk to coffee or the grocery store. We are surrounded by beautiful mountains that are full of trails so it feels like the country a lot, plus you run into everyone you know. I just love that small town feeling and being close to nature. That said, I like nothing better than a day in San Francisco and love wandering big cities on vacation. 

3) Lipstick, lip gloss or chapstick? 

Used to love lipstick only. Now that I'm over 45 it's lip gloss only. It's more youthful and lipstick tends to age most women. I hate sticky gloss though. Laura Mercier and Bobbie Brown make the best glosses I think.

4) If you could have a chef, a housekeeper, a driver or a masseuse at your service 24 hours a day, which would you choose? 

The housekeeper hands down! With three men, there is no end of stuff to do here and I like my home tidy. Also, I could cook all I like and someone else could do the dishes. I think that's my most hated household chore. 

5) Where do you do most of your shopping for clothes: online, malls, discount stores (like Ross), boutiques, thrift and consignment shops, or outlets? 

Well, I do like to try to buy from local merchants in my town. I love having them here and I would hate to lose them by buying at only chains. I especially dislike the mall and would never go if I can buy it in  town. I do shop at discount and department stores too. I'd love to do more thrift and consignment shopping. It's so much better for the earth and smarter.

6) What is one food that you can’t stand the taste of? 

I'm not a meat eater and never have been.

 7) What’s the last movie you saw in a theatre? 

We just took our boys to see, Wreck it Ralph, a very cute movie about a video game character who jumps out of his game into another. It's really original and fun. We also just saw Skyfall, the latest Bond movie and I loved that. Fantastic. Argo, is another must see that I just watched. I'm dying to see Anna Karenina. Just need to find someone to go with me!

8) Drugstore or high-end designer makeup? 

Both! The drugstore makeup is such great quality now you'd be crazy not to. I still have to buy high-end foundation though to get a color pale enough to match my skin. A little high, a little low. It's all about finding what works for you I think. 

9) If you won a round-trip ticket for two to any destination in the world, where would you go and who would you take? 

Wow, tough one. I think I'd love to go back to Rome with my husband. We just love that city.

10) Real “old fashion” books made with paper or electronic reads?

Paper all the way! I just love a bound book, and bookstores. I'd be sad to see that go away. I love having the book after it's read on a shelf too. Thinking I may reread it someday and just seeing it there makes me happy. Browsing through bookstores or libraries is one of the greatest joys to me. You can't do that with Kindles!

And I would like to nominate a few blogs that I recently found and personally adore that have under 200 followers for the Sunshine Award. Each are blogs which are all very different and unique! Love to hear their answers to the questions above also.

Ryzenberg On

The Silver Bunny

The Good Life

Please don't feel any pressure to "do" your award. It's completely optional. It's fun to get to know more about everyone though!

Have a great week!

Kim :)


  1. Sounds like you had a fabulous Thanksgiving Kim:) Congratulations on your two awards!!

  2. we have many of the same tastes... I think you know that already... those teddy bear cookies are TO DIE FOR ADORABLE!

  3. Congratulationson your two Blog awards. It is well deserved. Your green beans and mushroom dish looks so delicious. The chocolate cookies look so yummy too. I am glad that you enjoyed the Thanksgiving Holiday. It is nice to know more about you. Now, it is time to prepare for Christmas.

  4. Those cookies are adorable. I hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving. It looks as if you did.

  5. The beans dish looks very yummy - I love green beans! Glad to hear you had a great Thanksgiving holiday.

  6. Your green bean dish sounds wonderful Kim! Looks like you had a wonderful long weekend with family :) Fun family photos and the cookies are darling :)


  7. Lovely post Kim and thank you so much for stopping by over at mine; really appreciated. Don't be a stranger ;-) x

  8. Thanks everyone for your kind comments. I am thankful for all of you too!


  9. Thank you so so much for the Award or should I say : "MERCI BEAUCOUP !". You are just too sweet for words ! I am working from home today so I'll try to answer your questions between marking two packs of essays !XOXO

  10. Hi Kim,
    It looks like you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with those you love. Congrats on being awarded two awards at the same time. You certainly deserved the Sunshine Award as well. I enjoyed reading your answers to the questions. It's fun to get to know more about you and your life. I agree, Rome is absolutely fab for a getaway with a husband. ;)
    Hope your week is lovely-just like you.
    Cheers, xx Heather

  11. Kim, It's almost like I answered all those questions, right down to Rome! I guess Our names aren't the only thing we have in common.

    Best, Kim

  12. Aw thanks for the nomination Kim! I'm excited to participate! I loved reading your answers to all of those fun questions. I am a definitely a paper books girl too!

    You're Thanksgiving sounds lovely and those green beans look amazing! The bear cookies are so cute too - that is such a clever (and simple) idea! They turned out great.

    Hope your week after the holiday is going well!

    ~Amberly @ The Good Life

  13. Looks like a beautiful family Thanksgiving!

  14. Kim,
    I loved reading your answers...Just as I imagined through reading your blog that you are so thoughtful on many levels.