Thursday, January 29, 2009

My Great-Grandmother's Paintings

With my grandpa's paintings and now, my great-grandma's paintings, you'd think some of that talent got passed on to me. Not a lick of it did, which makes me all the more appreciative of what they did.

When I was up at my grandma's, I got pictures of the paintings her mother did. I love Grangy's impressionist style.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Life is a Cabaret, Old Chum

Maybe it's the tough economic times or maybe there's something about pre-WWII German nightlife that speaks to Asher and Luke, but they LOVE this song.

Asher: "Mom, that is a GOOD song!"
Luke: "Again?"

Good thing I like it because I've listened to this song (and only this song) about 40 times in the car since we checked out the Cabaret soundtrack from the library.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Trip to Utah

So, we took a whirlwind trip to Utah this weekend to spend some time with my grandparents. There are always so many things to do, people to see in Utah that I always feel torn. So, since this trip was so short and 75% of us were sick with colds, we decided to limit ourselves to just see Clyde family. But, come May, Utah friends and family, expect an email...

Since I recently posted a picture of most of my lovely Peterson cousins, I thought I needed to also show most of the Clydes. My cousins rock (um, a few of you still need to jump on the blogging bandwagon)! And, I wanted to say a few words about all my cousins.

I'm always bugging my cousins to get together, and they graciously oblige. I love that on both sides of my family I'm related to all these great people--they do interesting things (a dancer, a business person, a lawyer, 2 dentists, etc. Then, you should hear about the college majors--so neat!). Anyway, they're this great combination of being my friends who also happen to share my quirky traits (a love of the Simpsons, a fastidiousness about cleaning the house) while knowing just how crazy the family tree really is (crazy in a completely lovable, quirky way, of course).

Here are the boys enjoying breakfast at my grandparents' bar. Some of my fondest childhood memories happened on that same bar.

I got LOTS of good stories from my grandma about her 2 grandmothers. I can't wait to get them in print format. And, my kids loved Granda and Grandpa. Asher would lead both by the hand all over the house, and Luke would lean in for a snuggle every once in a while.

We also got to spend time with Dave and Jessica. Asher just loves those two, and Luke was warming up to them by the end of the weekend.

Thanks to Granda, Grandpa, Dave and Jessica, in particular, for helping us SO much on the trip!

Luke Peterson

You'd never guess that this boy is an Arizona-native:
And, you might not know that Luke got the wrong last name. It should be "Peterson." You see, we Petersons don't like to travel. We like consistency in our food, housing, and sleeping schedules.

So, we shouldn't have been surprised to see a most miserable Luke in a strange house, in a strange bed, eating food similar to what he eats at home (but perhaps you don't know that homemade Utah raspberry jam is just not the same as store-bought Arizona raspberry jam--so, of course, don't eat it!)

Luke sobbed at night when we tried to put him to bed, pushed away many of his favorite foods at each meal, and in general, kept busy trying to destroy Granda's and Grandpa's house.

But, when he walked into his own house, he took off all his clothes, got his stroller, put a baby and a train in the stroller, and was just the happiest boy I'd ever seen, walking around, making sure important things, like his crib and the library DVDs, were all there waiting for him.

Just in case you're wondering...

Asher is still allergic to peanuts:

(And, that's from jam on his bread that touched peanut butter.)

Indoctrinating kids...

I try to keep our family blog non-political because I:

1. live in a "purple" household.

2. know that a rabid liberal spouting her rhetoric can be just as irritating as a rabid conservative's.

3. try to be sensitive to the fact that many (most?) of my readers are Republican--just as they are sensitive to the fact that I am not.

4. and often, after reading, listening and thinking about my choices, my decision comes down to, um, my gut instinct. (Nate, look, I've done the research, but this is just how I feel about _blank_.)

But, having been through a historic day, I did want to express how wonderful this day has been. What a thrill to watch President Obama take the oath of office! It speaks volumes as to the advances this country has made in overcoming racism.

So, I also must confess to a little indoctrination. I totally made Luke watch the inauguration today--we had our own little party complete with a sippy cup of soy milk. He recovered nicely after the initial meltdown that the PBS Kids programming was taken off the air to cover the event.

And, I think this clip might just make my little train conductor a lifelong Democrat:

Regardless of your political affiliation, I hope you found joy and hope in today's ceremonies.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Christmas Break Recap

(sung to the tune of "The 12 Days of Christmas" because apparently, I'm fond of doing that)

During this Christmas season, we saw lots of things:
13 students played piano (my piano students rocked those Christmas carols, and while 12 would be more correct for the song, I have 13)
11 days of naps (because with no grading or piano lessons, what better way to pass the time?)
10 Lukey tantrums (because he decided to start the terrible two's a few months early)
9 Peterson cousins (Really, Nate and I have some of the most rockstar cousins ever--if only Bachman and Clyde cousin parties could have been arranged, too.)
thanks for the picture, Ale!
8 Rockband sessions (we blame these people, but our children were fast asleep, most of the time. Really, we never neglect them when we play! Never!)
6 treats a day (Yeah, I think that's about how many cookies, pieces of cake, toffee, etc., I ate every day. Hmmm...maybe our dryer isn't set too hot after all.)
5 family parties (because we like to party!)
4 fun cousins (have you seen our Christmas picture? There's no way we could have gotten a
picture of these kids with either of the sets of cousins they enjoyed--and continue to ask for Every. Single. Day.)

3 train rides (2 light rail rides and 1 choo choo train park ride.)

2 nativities (Asher wanted to be in both and then, changed his mind. But, I was determined that he be in the nativity picture anyway. Um, I wish I hadn't sat us right in the middle of all the costumed participants--they're much cuter than I. )

and a rotted shed that fell on our tree! (warning: it's about 3 minutes long, and I don't know how to edit)

Hope you're all enjoying getting back into life!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Scenes from a Marriage: Buche de Noel

For Christmas, Nate got me a cooking class at a local kitchen store so I could learn how to make a Buche de Noel (a French yule log with sponge cake, Grand Marnier chocolate mouse, chocolate buttercream frosting, and merengiue mushrooms--the class was two hours long and the only thing we made was the sponge cake. Everything else had to be done beforehand or else we would have been there for 6 hours.)

Emily: Nate, did you see the Buche de Noel I made?

Nate: No, I didn't see it yet.

Emily: (opens the box in the fridge and immediately begins hitting Nate) WHY DID YOU TAKE A BITE OUT OF IT?! IT'S FOR CHRISTMAS EVE TOMORROW!

Nate: I didn't take a bite out of it!

Emily: Oh...I guess it got damaged on the drive home.


Nate: Ok, I did take a bite, but it was just because I thought you didn't make it right because it looks so funny. And, then, I figured at least I could tell you it tasted good.

Emily: Um...that's exactly how it's supposed to look. And, this conversation is too good not to put on the blog.
In Nate's defense, I have posted the pictures. It's supposed to look like a fallen log in a French forest--see the powdered sugar snow and the dark chocolate bark?. And, yet, some family members have commented that it looks like a log they could the bathroom.

The best part about having a blog... that there's no need to write a holiday letter!