Saturday, December 31, 2011

Soups On! ….Happy New Year


Before you read…there are different type styles and sizes on this post…my blogger is not happy today – it’s putting in any style it wants to no matter what I do – sorry!!!!

We’re anxiously waiting for our New Year’s Eve dinner – we never eat this big any other night of the year but Doug has his tradition of Steak and Seafood. It’s the only time we indulge in this much food at one time.
Our menu tonight will be:
T-Bone steak
Tbone steak
Crab Legs/Claws
Crab legs 1
Steamed Mussels
Deep Fried Shrimp
Deep fried Shrimp
Baked Potato
Baked potato
Steamed Corn
Sweet Corn
Texas Toast
Texas toast 1 
And if there’s room later on there’s Cheesecake – I bought the mini-squares of 2 different kinds but I think they will stay in the refrigerator until tomorrow (which by the way will be Scalloped Potatoes and Ham).  I do have a good supply of antacids in the cupboard!
Okay you say…where do we put it all…well, we split the steak – I take the tenderloin part, he takes the other side. Both our preference for this cut of meat.
I will eat some of the deep fried Shrimp, potato and vegetable and bread.  THE REST IS HIS…I don’t care for other seafood than the Shrimp. So I don’t think I will be groaning and moaning tonight!

What a year this has been…many ups and downs.
We have many joys in this past year but there have been a few sad moments as well – we lost 3 family members and 4 friends. This is not a normal year and I pray 2012 brings happier days to all these families.
We have been blessed beyond words with a wonderful family…they are such loving, thoughtful boys and their families are our joy!
And we are also going to be grandparents again for the 6th time….life is good.

Our travels have been almost zero – mainly due to my discs – they have not been cooperating with me the past two years and even more this past year so there are no memories to reflect back on for travels – although we did get to see Doug’s cousins in Arkansas in July for a cousins reunion. I guess I can call that traveling – but you all know what I’m talking about – Pennsylvania is in my blood and it has been over a year!  But we will get there sooner or later. And no Simple Goods show this year! Oh well….at least we are here and basically in good health – I really don’t classify my discs as poor health because it sure doesn’t stop me from most things.
I’m glad though that this year is coming to an end because I’m anxious to see what 2012 has in store – I have plans and dreams and we’ll see if they will happen – the list is long. I never make resolutions though because we all know they never work…I do try to be a good person, thinking about what I say and do before I do it – and wishing I could be like that ALL YEAR LONG! It’s the best I can do to try my best.
Things I want to accomplish this year:
1. Re-paper or paint the bedroom walls – and trim
2. Paint bathroom cabinets and new floor
3. Crown Molding in dining room
4. Paint family room
Now as I read this I have to laugh…THESE AREN’T THINGS I WANT TO ACCOMPLISH…they’re things I want Doug to do…goodness, hope he doesn’t see this – I need to spring it all on him slowly.

May you all have a safe and wonderful New Year’s Eve celebration and New Year’s Day…and a wonderful New Year.

OMGosh I just re-read this post and it sounds like those 'Christmas Card Letters'....Nooooooo!


Monday, December 26, 2011

We survived another one!

Yep, all is well here at the Martinsen’s after having the family all yesterday afternoon/evening – pooped but doing good.

Everyone came between 1 – 1:30 ready to PARTY! And that we did. 
Snacks and drinks while chatting about the kids Christmas gifts they got and ‘GOT’ they did!!!! 
For what was going to be a simple Christmas it sure didn’t sound like it from their descriptions…and then the goodies from us – well we thought we kept it pretty ‘simple’ this year as well but when they started opening things, it told another story.

You know…it’s funny when the grandchildren are living at home they take many, many things for granted – well Jesse got his own apt. last month and wanted some things for his place so (among other things) we bought him a Grill/Griddle plus some ‘nice’ spatulas/turners/pizza cutter/knives – one’s that will last.
Well he oohhed and aahhed over these things like it was gold.  He said he had some of the cheaper ones and they were horrible…
Jesse griddle

And Alex…she looooves grandpa’s Onion Dip and requests it whenever they come over – he uses a food chopper to get the onions chopped real fine so he bought her one for Christmas so when she moves into her apt. she can make her very own dip.
Alex chopper 

Aidan kept us giggling with each gift he opened…and so did one of the grown-ups.
We drew names this year and Two of them got some pretty good stuff.
Heather received a bottle of Jack Daniels (it was on her list!) and the look on her face and Emily’s cracked us all up.
Heather gift 1
Heather gift 2

And Doug got a couple bottles too…Aidan was crazy all day and constantly wanted to slide backwards down the Two steps – he did this off and on for most of the day for some reason.
Doug gifts

Doug’s sister always gives each of the kids ornaments each year (until they reach age 16)
We took the picture so we can send it to her.
Kids with ornaments 1

Dinner turned out wonderful…I was a bit scared to do all those crushed peppercorns on the Tenderloin but I must say it made it so delicious.
Out of the 7 lbs of Tenderloin there is probably less than 3/4 lb left.

Darren and Brett forever try something silly in a picture and today was no different – we can always count on those two for some laughs throughout the day…
Guys being silly 2

Our family…
Family 1 

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and will continue to have a wonderful New Year.


Saturday, December 24, 2011

Fantastic neighbors at Christmas time and always

Here I thought my last post was a few days ago…guess I just proved that I really am a chatty One…

As if our family party a week ago today wasn’t enough work on this ole body not feeling up to par, my husband came home on Thursday from his morning coffee with ‘the guys’ and announced that they were all coming over around 4ish for drinks and appetizers…YIKES…did I fly. I was going to the store anyway that morningfor my own groceries but it turned out to be a big shopping trip. More appetizer fixins and drink fixins. Home I came, whipped up 6 different treats, set things in order and thought WHEW…I can retreat to the bedroom to read when they all get here…NOPE…three of them brought their wives so I was caught! lol  But it was a good time all in all. 
I actually got to sit and enjoy the brief time they were there – they came at 4 and were all gone by 6:30.  But he deserved the party – he’s been such a huge help this past year, bless his heart – he’s done things he never did before and learned a lot.

We have a family across the street from us that have lived there since they got married (his parents lived there prior).  So we have known this family for 32 years now.

Well they have 5 daughters...youngest one just graduated from high school so now they have 4 in college and one living and working in Washington DC.
Every Christmas they are all home and they bake Christmas cookies with their dad. Mom cleans up - she doesn't really care for baking all that much – but she does love to cook,  but it's a father/daughter thing they have done since they were little.

And every Christmas Eve afternoon they bring over a huge tray of their delicious delights along with a cute little letter pertaining to whatever has gone on in their lives or whatever.  This year it was not much luck with baking!
Cookie tray

Hope you can read the's cute
Cookie letter 

Star Divider
Besides finishing up the stocking stuffer search today, we went looking for something to use for place setting names.
Normally I make them but I just ran out of steam this year.
We found these at Kohl's - and we had a 30% coupon as well, I printed out names on the computer and card holders.  They’re funny little dudes – they look like Cup Cakes…and as things go they didn’t have enough of the dudes so we got the 2 package ones for Doug and myself - we needed 13 holders and that was ALL they had.
Name cards
Snowman holder

Star Divider

Yesterday we picked up our 7 lb Tenderloin for Christmas dinner – goodness that’s a huge hunk of meat…let’s just hope I don’t ruin it.
00:04:29 - 0044075F5  potato 1

Our dinner menu:
*Twice Baked Potatoes
*Steamed Green Beans and Asparagus
*Waldorf Salad (something I grew up with for Christmas dinner)
*Mandarin Orange Jello (especially for the little ones)
*French Bread
*Homemade Lemon Meringe Pie
*Chocolate Cake w/Cream Cheese frosting
*French Silk pie

Star Divider

And if you want a good laugh then watch this little JibJab card I made for our family….but for some reason the mouth thingy stayed black and I’m not sure why…but look anyway…I’m sure it will give you a giggle too.  Gotta turn your sound on though.
jib jab 
Thank you all my blog friends who sent me Christmas cards this year…how very special you made me feel. Gosh I wish we ALL could meet someday, somewhere as a whole group. Now wouldn’t that be fun????

Merry Christmas everyone.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Close-ups…It’s almost here!

The days are going faster and faster…think I’m about ready for Christmas!
Just have stocking stuffers to buy – our family would think Christmas never happened if they didn’t see their stockings hung and bulging on Christmas day…old as they are, it is the one thing they count on. 

And…guess what?  Next year we will be adding another one - Darren and MaryAnn are expecting!!!!  This will make grandbaby #6.

Here’s last years stockings … do ya think we can get
another one on here … Oh…we will!!!
Stockings 2010

This year we drew names for Christmas – no one needs anything and the things they do need are way out of reach so we thought this would be fun (except for the 3 little ones…they will still get a full Christmas).

I thought I’d do some close-ups of things in the house that didn’t show up in the previous post – so no more chatter…just a few pictures.

I re-did the kitchen table…it was kind of bare looking -
I added Two different garlands and some Sheep
to bring it all together with the Sheep tree
Kitchen table

On the bathroom counter
I separated the stacking boxes and used one for the tree
and the other for a stand
The third and smallest is in the next picture
with a small tree on it
Bathroom counter

Bathroom cabinet -
Bathroom cabinet

On top of Red cabinet -
Cabinet snowman

I didn’t like the kitchen counter box either…so that is redone -Kitchen counter box

On kitchen counter -
pineapple cookie cutters

On the middle of the dining room table -

Berry and vine garland, fabric trees and stars in
Tin Dough Riser on side table in dining room -
dough riser
Christmas Pewter in dining room -
Pewter Christmas table

On one of the shelves of the hutch in the den…
Greens and a Red Ware Snowman
plate from Eldreth Pottery Lancaster, PA -
Another Eldreth plate -
snowman plate
Pewter cupboard in dining room…Greens, Pewter
and wooden Gingerbread cookie press -
pewter 2
pewter 1

Tall tree and Santa in family room -
Santa and Tree

Close-ups of Mercury Glass tree ornaments -
Globe ornament
New ornaments

This ornament is clear glass spotted with
Mercury specks on the inside -
I bought it at the hospital gift shop a few weeks back when
I had my procedure done … needed a pick me up!!  
Glass ornament

And the antique Mercury Glass tree topper
from last months purchases -
Tree topper 

So that’s my show and tell for Christmas – I hope you enjoyed the tour.
I have been so inspired by all of you out there who have shown your homes this Christmas season. Thank you everyone…what fun!

I also hope you turn some of your giving to the less fortunate.
It doesn’t have to be with something of monetary value … sometimes just a smile, a hello or a nice gesture can put a smile in someone’s heart that you don’t even know. Wouldn’t that be wonderful.

And above all, please don’t forget the reason we are celebrating in the first place.

Merry Christmas Everyone

Friday, December 16, 2011

Simple Decorating – Lots of Stockings -

This week Doug and I took Tuesday and Wednesday and got the rest of our decorating finished.
It was a rough go for me but I would do a little and rest then go back and do more.
And Dan (son) and  Jamie came over Wednesday night and we made candy so now I’m set I think.
Jamie also came over last week and put lights on the trees, did the fireplace and the stairway…she’s the best!!!

Tomorrow (Saturday) our family and my brother’s family will be here for our semi-annual family get together. I’m making the ham and potatoes and they’re bringing the rest. Then of course our whole family will be here on Christmas afternoon/evening.

I mentioned a stockings didn’t I?
Well last week I won a give-away at The Stone House Prims 
Kendra was giving away the cutest Prim stocking garland and I won!!!  it was wrapped so pretty too. I hung it on my fireplace.
She really put a smile on my face….

(Remember you can click on any of the pictures to make them larger)
Stockings winnings 
Thank You Kendra!!!

And…just when I was in the middle of my painful week, another package came from dear sweet Tammy of
It couldn’t have arrived at a better time to pick me up- what a surprise!
I put them on my linen rack until I got the little fireplace up in the screenroom…aren’t they cute???
Stockings from Tammy
screen room fireplace
Thank you Tammy!!!
These girls must know I’m an easy mark for stockings…I have a stocking tree in my screen room so they fit in very nicely.
(This is last years screen room stocking tree but it’s decorated the same this year)
SR Tree

So on with the decorating – simple as it is it’s finished – couldn’t do much more and didn’t want to do much more.
Our back porch…we need some real snow instead of this cotton – it blew in the wind before I could take the picture and doesn’t look very fluffy I see….
Back porch 1  2011
Kitchen Tree
Kitchen 1
Mitten Box
Above cabinets 2 
Candy cane bowl
Candy canes 

Family Room…
family room 1 
Family Room 2011

My dear little Charley Brown tree…I was a bit concerned when I brought the tree home and it sat here all bare…and I wanted to use my Mercury ornaments on it but only had a few so a trip to the shops here proved futile – we don’t have a large selection of stores. So I ended up filling in with Walmart ornaments and some from Target. I must say I am very pleased. It all fell into place as I started decorating it. It’s a combination of Mercury, Gold and Silver.  The people I thought would not like the tree just love it so I think I’m good with it too!
Christmas Tree 2011

Christmas Tree



Dining Room…
Front Door 
Bowl Rack
DR tree 1 
Dinng room 2 
Dinng room 3
Dining Room 1  2011 

Den 2011
Snowman in bowl
desk 1 
Blue table 1

Bowl rack den

Screen Room
screen room scene
screen room fireplace
So that’s my decorating – I didn’t get the yard pictures taken yet…maybe if we get some snow or if Doug will take them I will put them on later this week. And as I look back on these photos I see I use mostly greens and berries to decorate – never really noticed till I saw the photos.

I also received a wonderful Christmas gift in the mail from my friend in PA (Linda).
Gifts from Linda
She sent a huge box full of goodies…Scentsy’s tart melts, Battery Candle, Reindeer, Chocolates!
One thing was a toilet tank box – now I know it goes on the back of the toilet but for now I'm using it on the bathroom counter.

Our family Christmas on Saturday…
Family  1 2011
Aidan wearing his uncles boots…
Aidan boots 

Baby found a basket to crawl into after everything was done…
Baby in basket

Now if I missed anything I can’t really think what it is because not much has happened here lately.
I pray I didn’t leave anyone out of being thanked for something… my head is kind of fuzzy now and then.

Have a wonderful Christmas to all my blog friends, follower and all others that come and visit now and then.

Merry Christmas