March 31, 2014

Christmas


Christmas 2013 in pictures...

// tree //

//  animal hat reappearance //

 // dollar store gift exchange //

 // stripes at the sorensen party //

 // christmas church outfits //

 // christmas eve //
 // sorensen nativity //

// skyping tommy in russia //


// skyping steven in arizona //

it was a merry one!

...


I made a pie!


This past Thanksgiving, I got asked to bring a pie to dinner. I had never made a pie before, but it felt like one of those rites-of-passage to adulthood so I decided to do it. 

I researched all the kinds of pies like a crazy person, and finally decided on this recipe for Razzleberry Pie. I was hoping it would turn out like the one from Marie Callendar's by the same name. And guess what...IT DID!! I can happily report that my first pie experience went very well!

 Before...


...During...

...After!!


I suggest you make this tasty pie for your next gathering. If I can do it, you can do it!

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War on Wood


Another catch-up post: November 2013

November was a crazy month. Pretty much all of our stories from this month start and end with one thing: WOOD. Wood seems harmless enough, but it singlehandedly caused two epic adventures for the Sorensens this past November.

The first story is a lot more hilarious when I tell the long version, but I'll keep it short for blogging purposes. One evening, Daniel was working with his friend John taking down some heavy wood cabinets for a house remodel. As they were removing them, one of the cabinets fell and hit Daniel on the top of his head. After sending some gruesome pictures to his dad (a surgeon), it was determined that Daniel needed stitches. So he TEXTED (not called, texted) me to let me know. I freaked out remained calm and drove him to the Instacare, and all was taken care of. It could have been a lot worse, and he was lucky to get out of there with 9 staples, and no sign of a concussion!

 Instacare Daniel

 FrankenDaniel

Which brings me to my second story. Daniel has decided recently to take up woodcarving. It's a really neat hobby (except when wood shavings are all over your living room) and Daniel is very good at it. This Santa is only the third thing he ever carved!


One day, Daniel was carving another Santa similar to this one, and a giant, sharp, terrible chunk of wood went rouge and shot RIGHT INTO HIS EYE!! I am not kidding you. It was stuck in his eye. Craziness ensued. It took me almost 5 minutes to get it out. I ended up having to pull it out with tweezers!! After all of the stress was over and we determined that Daniel was not blind, the two of us had a straight up laugh attack in front of the bathroom mirror where we had been trying to get the wood out of his eye. It was such a freak accident, and we were so glad he was okay!

Don't worry, the next day we were at Home Depot buying eyewear for wood carving. NOT making that mistake again!



And that is why M & D are not friends with wood. The end.

...


Clue Party


Still playing hardcore catch-up over here....[Actual Date: October-ish 2013]

This past Halloween, Daniel and I threw a really fun Clue party with a few friends. It was super fun! When I first came up with the idea, I figured I could get on Pinterest really quick and find someone who had already pre-made all of the stuff, and all we'd have to do is get dressed up!

Boy, was I wrong. I couldn't find much of anything! We ended up coming up with the gameplay, invitations, place cards, instructions, and all of the other materials ourselves. Totally worth it, as you will see below. We had a blast! 

DISCLAIMER: all apparent abuse pictured below is completely fake :)


Miss Scarlet and Colonel Mustard

Colonel Mustard actually does have real army ties, so I think we get bonus points for that.


This is Professor Plum FULLY committing to his character by shaving a very realistic looking cul-de-sac in his hair. Also, Mrs. Peacock's fur coat was incredible.


I laugh SO hard every time I see this photo!!

Mrs. White and Mr. Green



Professor Plum and Mrs. Peacock


The whole gang - which one of us is guilty?!

If you are interested in throwing your own clue party, here is a rundown of how we ran ours. (If you don't care, you can stop reading here. I will love you anyway! :) 

We pulled a lot of the party elements from the movie Clue, and some of them from the board game. First, we created invitations. I made one invitation per person in order to assign them their character.

Download our invitation wording here.
Download character assignments here.

We ended up having the party at my parents house so that there were enough rooms. I made labels for each room in the house and printed them on old fashioned paper. I set the table, complete with a clue-themed centerpiece that contained all of the weapons and a bunch of vintage cards from the game. I also made place cards for each guest.

Download room labels here.
Download place cards here.

When the guests arrived, we welcomed them into the "study" for "drinks" a.k.a. cream soda. Daniel and I thrifted an excellent decanter and some tumblers which we washed out and put the cream soda in. When all the guests had arrived, we adjourned to the dining room for dinner. I served 2 kinds of soup (a throwback to the movie) along with a salad, Lion House rolls, etc, and pumpkin roll for dessert. One of the soups I made was this Lemon Chicken Stew. It was to die for!! We stayed in character during dinner and after we ate, the party was on.

We went back to the study to debrief. I explained the gameplay we invented, which went like this:

The first part of the game was set up exactly like the board game. We used the Clue cards from the board game, and selected one room, one weapon, and one person at random, and secretly put them in the "confidential" envelope. Then, we divided the rest of the cards up evenly among the six of us.

Here's where the gameplay changed. We each went to a random room in the house so that we could put all of the secret information we just received on our scorecards. Then, we hid the cards we got around the room.

Download the scorecards here (the original is from karencookiejar.com).

Afterward, we all met again in the lounge. It was time to "search the house" like they did in the movie. To find our partner who would search the house with us, we drew straws. Then, we went with our randomly assigned partner to a room of our choice to search for the clues. When we went into the rooms, we both looked for the clues and shared them with each other when we found them. Some people tried to be a little more sneaky than others...

We did this a few times. Between each of these searching rounds, we met back in the lounge for a guessing round. The guessing rounds were exactly like the board game - we took turns saying a scenario we thought might be true, and asked if anyone could prove us wrong. If no one guessed it right, we picked a new partner and repeated another searching round. 

Since we were good guessers, I think the game lasted only 3 rounds, which was perfect. We finally determined that the murderer was Miss Scarlet, with the rope, in the study. 


After the game, we all went down to the "ballroom" to watch the movie clue, complete with popcorn, drinks, and snacks. It was a super fun night!

I wish I had taken a million more pictures. Some of the most fun touches were in the details of the rooms, and I never took photos of them! I hope you still get the idea, and feel free to ask if you have any questions.

...


February 16, 2014

Birthday!


This past October, I turned 24. 

24.

Oof.

For some reason, that was a big one for me. 

My thought process went like this: "Well 23 is still your early 20's, but 24 is technically considered your mid-twenties! And that means I'm only one year away from being 25, which is a quarter of a century old! I've lived over a quarter of my life! Wait...and if you follow the rounding principles I teach my 5th graders, 25 rounded to the nearest ten is 30...so basically I'm 30!!!!"

*deep breaths*

Luckily, I have the sweetest girlfriends in the ENTIRE world who got together and threw me a surprise party at my house. My first surprise party ever! I forgot all about how old I was, and just remembered how lucky I am to have such wonderful, supportive friends and family. Daniel was totally in on the whole thing, and he sneakily set it up without me having a clue!

We were all having so much fun hanging out, eating yummy food, chatting, and staying up past our 24-year-old bedtimes that we didn't take a single picture. (Those are the best nights, aren't they?) But I just have to show you the cake that  expert-chef Liz Moffit made me...




It was a giant, spectacular, 8-layer piece of perfection! But if you think it looks pretty, you should have tasted it. It was as heavenly as you could imagine! I felt so, so spoiled. 

Thank you to my most fabulous, awesome girls for making 24 one of the most amazing birthdays of my life. You are the best friends a girl could ask for!

...



Halloween at an Elementary School

I have come to the conclusion that you have not experienced Halloween until you have spent it with 30 children at an Elementary School. Halloween is by FAR my favorite day of the school year. It's my very favorite holiday, and I love dressing up and getting to party with the kiddos! 




We did one of those stations where the kids had to feel something gross and guess what it was. One of the moms in my class is HILARIOUS, and brought the bowl labeled "worms". All the kids guessed spaghetti, gummy worms, etc...but guess what was in the bowl? ACTUAL WORMS!!!! Oh my gosh, it was too funny. You should have seen the kids' faces when we showed them what they had touched. So, naturally, we took the bowl down to the faculty room after the party and had all the teachers feel it too. SO funny!!





Two of my cute parent volunteers!



Halloween Mod Podge Art


 I wish I could post a million more pictures of our party (I actually took 186 that day), but I can't show their cute faces on the blog. So all you get is a few pictures of our party activities, and a picture of my costume this year:


I was a minion! The idea credit goes completely to Lauren Bradley, the queen of costume ideas and one of my very best friends. It was a fun costume and my kids really liked it!

Any costume ideas for me next year? I'd love to hear!

...

three years.

Actual date: August 16, 2013

So this is crazy. I happen to be posting this on our three-and-a-half year anniversary, exactly. February 16, 2014. Spooooky...


This past August, Daniel and I celebrated our three-year anniversary. What?! How did that come so fast? On one hand, I can't even remember what life was like without Daniel. But on the other hand, I can't believe how fast the time has gone. 


Daniel and I celebrated by going on a little "staycation" over the weekend. We stayed in a gorgeous hotel downtown, went out to dinner, shopped, and spent time together. It was so relaxing and just what we needed. 


Happy three (and a half) years to my amazing husband! I am so blessed to have you in my life, Daniel. I can't wait to see what other wonderful adventures life has in store for us!

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