Sunday, January 16, 2011


Last Tuesday night, we braved a snowstorm to make it to our first book club meeting of the New Year! Four of us piled into a 4-wheel drive vehicle, driven by Tara, to make the trek to Jennie's house. It was a beautiful wintry night with the snow falling.
The seven die-hard book lovers gathered for a group shot before diving into the food that was inspired by the book, The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. It is a modern gothic novel set in England.
Tara brought an amazing venison stew. On this cold winter's night it tasted especially delicious and warmed our tummies!
A variety of wine, cheese, grapes, as well as cranberry scones made by Annisa were yummy! The recipe for the scones was by the Barefoot Contessa.
Yours truly made a Victorian trifle. I love this dessert and was glad I had an excuse to make it. I used lowfat ingredients and fresh fruit to make it healthy!
We had several tempting desserts like moist date-nut bread by Meghan, homemade (from scratch!) gingerbread, and a pumpkin cheescake roll by Becky. Such taste treats!
After sampling thus wonderful array of taste treats, we had a rousing discussion of The Thirteenth Tale. I would share our discussion, but I wouldn't want to ruin the book for those of you who might want to read it, which I highly recommend it! Next month our book is The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian. Can't wait!

Sunday, January 9, 2011


WOW! Another year, another decade begins. Last year I made eight resolutions for the New Year. If you follow my blog, you probably know that I achieved some and fell short on others. Here are the results:
1. Keep a list of books read. I did that and shared some of them along the way. The grand total was 45 books in 52 weeks. If I had to pick a favorite, it would be The Help by Kathryn Stockett.
2. Lose twenty-five pounds. I lost eighteen!
3. Upgrade the upstairs. We spent several months painting two rooms and the hallway, having hardwood floors installed, and reorganizing. I am really pleased with the results.
4. Plan a 20th wedding anniversary getaway for me and Jim in 2011. Have some ideas, but no definite plans. Any suggestions?!?!
5. Photography Fun - I was hoping to take a photography class this year, but that didn't happen. What did happen? My daughters got me a Sony Nex3 camera which I am having a blast learning how to use.
6. Write. The only extra writing I did this year was blogging.
7. Trip to the Big Apple. I was hoping to spend several days in one of my favorite cities, but that wasn't possible. However, I did win free tickets to Lombardi and one of my friends and I took the train to NYC for the day, saw the show, and shopped!
8. Raise $7000.00 for JDRF. We raised close to $5000.00.
WELCOME 2011!!!!
A New Day! A New Year! A New Life!
I am excited about 2011 for so many reasons. Last year we welcomed our 7th grandchild, Emme, into our growing family. We will soon be welcoming #8! Stay tuned for the news! Each new day is so special because all I have to do is think about my daughters and their families and I smile! We are so blessed.
I am also excited to establish new goals for the new year. Here are a few:
1. Continue logging what I read and aim for 52 books in 52 weeks! I just finished Laura Hillenbrand's Unbroken. I highly recommend it! I just started The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet.
2. Lose the remaining seven pounds and 5 - 8 more.
3. Raise $6000.00 for JDRF.
4. Complete Project 52. Project 52 is taking a photo a week and scrapping a layout using that photo. I actually scrapped my first layout for this project yesterday!
5. Take a photography class. Haven't given up on this goal!
6. Travel - we have our annual family vacation planned for Virginia Beach and I will be going to Minneapolis to be the "nanny" for baby Andersen while his/her Mom attends the Tastefully Simple Convention. However, I still want to get back to New York City!
My motto is "Carpe Diem," Seize the Day! That's what I intend to do each new day of this great new year! I wish everyone a fabulous 2011 filled with joy!