Friday, March 28, 2008

Belt Graduation

Annabel recently graduated from a white belt to a yellow belt in karate. Graduation day was very exciting. The dojo made quite a deal out of belt graduation. Each level showed off their moves and the entire group went through a series of exercises. We are very proud of Annabel and her advancement in karate.
I'm having trouble down loading video, but I'll keep trying.
With her new belt.
A variety of kicking positions.

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Festival of Fables

Noah's 6th grade ELA class put on a program today. The kids were given an assignment to write a fable and were now presenting six of them in skits.

Noah played the role of the Pig in the fable Zoe the Zebra.

Noah is a natural ham. tee hee hee

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Where have all the flowers gone?

Actually, it should be where have the bulbs gone? This is where they were yesterday, but as with any Spring snow shower, the snow will quickly melt and my little bulbs will continue to grow. Come sometime in April, we may actually see flowers.

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It was beautiful this morning to see the snow blanketing everything.

Just some happy pictures of Bea.

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Look what I found this morning!

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Monday, March 24, 2008


This is a main staple of Noah's diet. He eats a nutella sandwich almost every day. Darren's receptionist gets us three of these jumbo containers each month at BJ's (a warehouse store), because we can only get the smaller size at the grocery store. This, along with cheese, is Noah's major source of protein and it is not much at that. Darren, as well, usually has a nutella and peanut butter sandwich for lunch if there are no appealing leftovers to take to work. The rest of us like it with bananas or pretzels. I recently came across a recipe for nutella ice cream that we are planning on trying out soon.

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It's Cold in Here

On Sunday afternoon our heater started making grinding noises and putting off a odd smell. Darren couldn't figure anything out and I started to get a little freaky with the noises, so I turned it off about 2pm. This morning it was cold (though I know people here who keep it that cold). Now several hundred dollars later, we are warm and toasty again.
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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

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Annabel refused to get her picture taken. She was mad at the Easter Bunny, he didn't bring her what she wanted. Everyone else seemed to be happy.


Friday, March 21, 2008

Snaggle Puss

Bea's tooth has been sitting lopsided in her mouth for the last two weeks. She keeps asking us to pull it for her while she sleeps. That obviously hasn't happened.


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Girls' Weekend in NYC

I took very few pictures this weekend in NYC, but these were some of the highlights.
My first view of the Empire State building.

Interesting display of Jesus and a Nun.

The discount bra shop where we were felt up by an orthodox jew, who determined what bra we should be wearing.

We went upstairs above this fish market to look at knock off designer purses.

Paige is a champion bargain shopper.

Everyone and their dog was in Chinatown on Saturday.

This is a cool church in Greenwich, sandwiched in between brownstones.

Our beautiful bounty--what would we do in NYC if we didn't buy purses?

We had a huge suite with 2 bedrooms and 2 full baths, a kitchen and huge livingroom/dining room.

This is a job I would never, ever, in a million years take.


Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy Birthday, Dad

Click to play Birthday Present
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Annabel's 4th grade band concert

On Wednesday, Annabel had her first band concert. She was very excited and not the least bit nervous. Which came as no surprise to Darren or me. She is much more advanced as a flute player than the rest of the band (she has been playing for 2 1/2 years now), but there are no other options for her if she wants to participate in the school band.

pause playlist to listen to Ode to Joy


More cooking with Noah

These are blueberry chocolate chip cookies that Noah made for us last week. We pretended that there were no surprises in them, but Darren did discover the coconut. They were a little gooey, but good. We modified the recipe I found on the Picky Palate.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Karate Kid II

This is spotlight week for Annabel at Karate. She will test for her yellow belt next week and this is in preparation for that. Notice her two tips (black bands on her belt). She is now a member of the Black Belt champions, which means she is actively pursuing her black belt (due June 2012). She is by far the loudest yeller and is a little scary in how intense she is about it all. I wouldn't want to come across her in a dark alley. Actually, she is all defense and no attack, so maybe I should say that she might hold her own in a dark alley. ;)


Welcome Spring


check out this fun site, that my friend Stacy Julian sent me. In case the link doesn't work, the URL is

it should bring up a black, blank screen. Click anywhere on the screen and be delighted. Even better click and drag your mouse all over and enjoy the idea that it is "virtually" spring!


Yummy Pretzels

Carrie sent me a link to a blog every thing is pink
where I found this great and easy recipe. We all loved them. We did 1/2 with kosher salt and the other 1/2 with cinnamon sugar.

Soft Baked Pretzels

1 package (.25 oz.) Active dry yeast (= 1 TBSP)

2 TBSP brown sugar

1 1/8 tsp. Salt

1 ½ cup warm water

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup bread flour


2 cups warm water

2 TBSP baking soda


2 TBSP butter, melted

1-2 TBSP coarse kosher salt or cinnamon sugar

In a large mixing bowl, add yeast, brown sugar and salt. Test water temperature with thermometer. When it reads 110 degrees, add to bowl. Stir to dissolve. Add both types of flour and stir well.

Place dough on floured surface. Knead dough until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. ** (To knead dough, press down on dough with your palm, fold the dough over and rotate 1/4 turn, repeat until dough is ready.) Grease a large bowl. Place dough in bowl then turn dough upside down to coat the surface. Cover with a towel and let rise for one hour in a warm spot.

Combine 2 cups warm water (test again for 110 degrees) and baking soda in an 8-inch square pan. After the dough has risen, divide it into 12 pieces. Roll each piece into a 1.5 foot rope, ½ inch wide. Twist into a pretzel shape, and dip into the baking soda solution. Place on cookie sheets with parchment paper and let rise 15 to 20 minutes.

Bake at 450 F for 8 minutes or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter, and then sprinkle with coarse salt or cinnamon sugar.

**Marinda’s note — although I haven’t timed it, in the Kitchen-Aide it might be about 3 minutes that I knead the dough. Also I use some whole wheat flour for the all-purpose flour.


Saturday, March 8, 2008

Practice, Practice, Practice

Noah is a good boy. He may have to be reminded and prompted to practice, but he is doing a great job and we are really proud of him. He has been practicing and practicing since kindergarten.