Friday, December 31, 2010

remembering 2010

 The new year is fast approaching and what better time to sit back, relax, and reflect on the past year. Our family has had the opportunity to experience many amazing places, create new memories that will last a lifetime, have met new friends who we will cherish forever, and have moved back from one beautiful country to another.
Mommy and Little Miss L. getting ready to head to Madrid, Spain!
In front of the Temple of Debod in Madrid, Spain.
At the Valley of the Fallen in El Escorial, Spain.
The hubby and I in front of the Cathedral in the center of Segovia, Spain.
Family shot in front of Alcázar of Segovia, Spain.
Enjoying a great night out in Belém, Portugal with our friends visiting from Canada
Weekend getaway to Albufeira, Portugal.
Daddy and Little Miss L. enjoying the beautiful beach in Albufeira, Portugal.
Little Miss L. getting excited to head to Ireland and learn about the other half of her heritage.
Family shot in front of the Blarney Castle in Ireland.
Daddy and Little Miss L. kissing the Blarney Stone in Blarney, Ireland.
Daddy and Little Miss L. in front of the prison in Cork, Ireland.
Daddy and Little Miss L. waiting to board the plane to Valencia, Spain.
Valencia Opera House. City of the Arts and the  Sciences, Valencia, Spain.
Little Miss L. experiencing her first Carnaval, in Portugal.
Watching the Carnaval parade in Lisbon, Portugal.
Daddy and Little Miss L. inside the Chapel of Bones Evora, Portugal.
Mommy and Little Miss L. in front of St. Mark's Basilica Venice, Italy.
Daddy and Little Miss L. goofing around in the streets of Venice, Italy.
Little Miss L. loving the warm water, her first time in the Mediterranean sea.
Enjoying our family gondola ride in Venice - the end to a perfect trip!
Little Miss L. celebrating her first birthday!
Our little girl is no longer a baby!
Thank you to everyone who has made the last year so special and we can't wait to see what 2011 has in store! Happy New Year! Pin It

Thursday, December 30, 2010

highlights of christmas 2010

Our bellies full, the presents unwrapped, it is now time to unwind from all our holiday festivities. This Christmas, we were able to look back at the past year and reflect on what we are thankful for. Being surrounded by friends and family really reminded us of all the things we are grateful for including love, health and happiness. Little Miss L. loved all of the action that took place around her. Here are a few highlights:
Our neighborhood is also famous for its "Älight at Night" Christmas celebration where all homeowners light their properties with numerous candles roadside on Christmas Eve which brings in visitors from all over the area.
The display involving over 100 residences is based on a Spanish Christmas tradition called luminaria.
After taking in all the lights, Little Miss L. could not stay up any longer.
Yippee, it is Christmas morning!
Wow, where did all these presents come from?!?!
Hey everyone, I am ready to open all these presents!
Finally! Little Miss L. could not get enough of all the wrapping paper.
This picture explains it all - complete chaos Christmas morning.
Little Miss L. and her first toboggan!
This was way more fun indoors.
Christmas would not be complete without a plate full of homemade goodies.
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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

tis the season for eggnog!

If you were asked to name a drink that is associated with the Christmas season, eggnog would likely be near the top of that list.  I was never a big eggnog fan, but this year, our local grocery store had 1L cartons on sale for 99 cents, so I decided to pick some up.  The family got together for Christmas eve and we decided to serve some holiday cheer.  The following is how we prepared our eggnog, which was a hit:
  • 1 cup ice
  • 1 ounce of white rum (optional)
  • 1 cup eggnog
  • 1 whole nutmeg
  • place ice cubes in glass
  • pour in 1 ounce of white rum (optional).  Eggnog is best served cold, so it is suggested to keep the white rum in the freezer prior
  • add 1 cup chilled eggnog, top up to taste
  • stir
  • grate a dash of whole nutmeg over top, add to taste
Grating whole nutmeg smells and tastes better than packaged ground nutmeg
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Friday, December 24, 2010

breakfast fun for the holidays

I love pancakes! There is nothing like waking up on a Sunday morning to the wonderful aroma of  homemade pancakes. If you are looking for a way to make this Christmas morning special for your little ones, whip up your favourite pancake recipe, pull out your holiday cookie cutters and let the fun begin! This is a fun and creative activity you can do with your little ones and they will enjoy helping you make them.

This is my favourite pancake recipe to use. You can also make the batter the day before and refrigerate overnight. Keep plain or add seasonal fruit for a burst of flavour.

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 
  • 1 1/3 cup milk 
  • Preheat a lightly oiled griddle/pan over medium-high heat.
  • Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix well.
  • In a separate bowl, beat together egg, olive oil, vanilla, and milk. Pour milk mixture into dry ingredients. Beat until smooth. If you would like to add fruit, mix at this stage.
  • Pour or scoop the batter onto the hot griddle/pan, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Flip pancake when you see the top start to bubble. 
  • Add your favourite topping, serve hot and enjoy!
Note: If you notice the batter is thick, add a small amount of milk until you reach the perfect consistency.
You can use butter or oil.
We decided to go with blueberries!
The end result after using our Christmas cookie cutters.
Little Miss L. decided she wanted the candy cane pancake.
Happy Holidays everyone from our family to yours! Thank you to everyone who has continued to support in love with the small things. Pin It

Thursday, December 23, 2010

house crashing

I love the holiday season for many reasons and one of my favourite things to do is explore other people's homes at this time of year. I'm intrigued by what colours, themes, and decor ideas others decide to incorporate. With that said, I decided to crash my parents' home and thought I would share it with you! This year, my momma decided to go with traditional red, green, and gold – perfect choice, might I add. You don't need to go over the top, hints of these three colours throughout the home bring a beautiful Christmas feel without overwhelming anyone who may walk through the door. Let's start the tour!
As you enter their home you notice the non-traditional wreath. The pop of colour is very inviting!

Poinsettia-themed centerpiece with pine cones and gold accents using Christmas bulbs.
Simple fireplace mantel with red poinsettias, faux greenery,
stunning candle holders with cream candles and gold ribbon to tie it all off.
Close up of candles on the fireplace mantel with gold ribbon.
This rustic centerpiece with faux greenery and a combination of gold candles, poinsettias,
ribbon, and glitter sticks, looks great on top of the gold tablecloth in the dining room.
If you have a small area that needs a little something, this candle holder surrounded by faux greenery
and spray painted pine cones adds a great touch to any area.
Keeping with the colour theme, a beautiful green and gold place-setting is used. If you are looking for an inexpensive napkin holder, try using curling ribbon in your desired colour.
I love the white and gold ceramic figurines throughout the house; it ties everything together.
Bright gold bows brighten up any room!
Red and gold ornaments adorn the Christmas tree.
As I mentioned Tuesday, Little Miss L. and I love their red and gold Christmas tree.

So, there you have it folks! I hope you enjoyed the tour of my parents home, and it has inspired you to add a little red, green, and gold to your holiday decor. Pin It