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Sunday, December 6, 2009

it's christmas time

christmas in wisconsin is a terrible song... you should look it up. you might throw up. but, it's a great time of year. since we live out here, we thought we should really experience a winter christmas, so on the first day it started snowing we drove out to a christmas tree farm in west allis to chop down our own tree.

it was freezing so we picked a tree really fast and david cut it down.

i also got an early christmas present! these are my favorite kind of ornaments and my favorite christmas story. i love them!
then we decorated the tree. i think it looks pretty good. i can't wait until we have a bigger place so we can get a bigger tree and get even more awesome ornaments. you can't see the garland that well in this pic, but you can see it in real life. over thanksgiving my mom got me this cool antique garland with crystals on it... so sparkly and christamsy. thanks mom!

i'm still working on the christmas tree skirt. i'm half way done, but of course i found a bucilla pattern that i love, so i'll probably make a better one next year!

thanksgiving... i mean amber's birthday weekend

i don't have any pictures of actual thanksgiving, because, let's face it we were really just celebrating ambie's birthday all weekend.

ambie had an awesome 19th bday on black friday. we kicked off the day by a little surprise blueberry muffin breakfast... sorry it wasn't really muffins amber, andie told us you had a muffin tin. she didn't tell us she hid it under the oven. then she got the best present ever:

(in case you can't enlarge that, it's a kitty pillow)

then we went shopping all day and ate way too much, but fuddruckers was an excellent bday dinner choice. renee was the best roommate by bringing a dq cake into the restaurant.

tyler was way happy to be shopping.

until he found out he would have to sit in the trunk with our shopping bags.

then we ate some more. tepanyaki was not as good as kobe, but it was still fun.

hey brothers.
rj and andelish and mom. loving every second of it!
and that is the only picture i have of baby! so sad. andie and amber: email me the rest of the pics!
then we played great dalmuti too much...

andie was not happy with what david was playing.

and that was the weekend. eating too much and hanging with all of my favorites.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

medical school is so boring

well, medical school isn't boring for david, but i'm dying! at least i like doing domestic things and am bored enough to think of projects to keep me busy. this thanksgiving i'm going to be most grateful for the internet!

while browsing the web a while ago i found a tutorial on how to make a cathedral window quilt... it didn't look very hard, so i though why not? muslin was on sale and i had time on my hands. i started cutting out the squares and ironing them into origami shapes and stitching them together, hours and hours and hours later i have part of a square done. i think it looks pretty cute, but it takes too long, so this will probably end up just being crib sized.

a few weeks ago i was browsing martha's website and came across some super cute carmel apples, so i called up the yan's and we dipped some apples. i think they turned out delicious!

i also had a crazy idea to make a fall wreath out of real fall leaves so i made david go on a few walks with me around our neighborhood and down by a stream near our house. we collected a ton of great leaves and i tried a few preservation techniques... don't believe the internet, glycerin gel does not work! i ended up with a bunch of moldy leaves, ironing with wax paper worked the best for me. the wreath has been up about 6 weeks and hasn't crumbled yet!

so, that's what i've been up to while david studies. pretty boring, but i have found some shows that you cannot miss: modern family, glee (sometimes), gg (as always) and 30 rock (it only took me a week to watch all of the seasons, it's a good thing we finished before test week)

so between the crafting and the baking i've filled my evenings. i'm looking forward to thanksgiving and being able to hang out with all of my readers (andie, mom, laura and stephanie). that's all i can think of to blog about. now that i finally have my camera charger back i'll be able to blog more frequently. isn't a blog without pictures so boring!?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

new le crueset

my mom is going to be the only who cares... feel free to skip this one... the next one is better anyways.

so when my mom was in town we went to the le crueset outlet they have near us and picked up these little french onion soup dishes, which just so happen to be the perfect size for making individual pot pies, which we enjoyed for dinner tonight.

just another view of the handled bowls.

she also bought me this beautiful new heart shaped enameled cast iron that i made spinach artichoke dip in.  funny story, i registered for this for my wedding last year and grandma nielsen got it for me, but turns out it was sold out... but i found it in wisconsin!

thanks for all of the le crueset mom!  you're the best!  we can't wait until you come back so we can make delicious treats in these!

memorial day weekend!

for memorial day weekend we had two visitors... tyler our best house guest and my mom.  we had so much fun, even though it was the weekend before david's first test week.  we kicked off the weekend by heading to the brewers/giants game.  it was fun, but mom was done by about the fourth inning.  so we headed to the fan shop and typod got all the brewers gear he could handle.

after the game we headed to gilles' frozen custard for dessert... we converted my mom and tyler to frozen custard. 

on saturday we went down to chicago to go shopping and eat at giordano's.  i finally got to try a real chicago italian roast beef sandwich... it was delicious.

then we did a little more shopping and decided to visit the sear's tower, which is now called something else, but no one remembers it's new name.  

it's tall.
we got in line to get tickets and found out the line was like 2.5 hours long... so mom decided it would be worth an extra $15 a piece to cut to the front of the line.

a 60 sec. elevator ride later we were 103 stories up.  they have these little plexiglass alcoves that you can stand in.  it's pretty scary.

these pictures look weird because of all the reflected light off of the glass.

doesn't look that safe.

see: you can see all the way down to the street!

mom was freaking out... she had a death grip on several strangers... so funny!
anyways, our weekend was so fun!  we love it when people come to visit.  everyone has the best time with us too!  ;)

despite having visitors during prime study time david did awesome on his exams.  medical school is going to be a breeze.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

white coat ceremony

sorry for all of the posts today, but the fans are getting restless.

friday afternoon was david's white coat ceremony.  it was the last day of orientation.  this is when they get their white coats and kind of an initiation into the medical profession.  the dean of the school and the keynote speaker took our picture:

i thought it was kind of funny that david would ask them, but they were happy to do it!  i'm glad david goes to a school where there are nice people.  

al's bday

this post is going to boring for everyone but my mom probably.  so feel free to skip it.

for my birthday typod and andie decided to surprise me in wisconsin!  they picked me up from work on wednesday and from then we basically partied all week.

first i was greeted by a mountain of presents typod insisted he picked out.  i loved everything and was glad that my mom got me wrinkle cream and baby stuff.... do you think she's trying to tell me something?!

then we went to a tepanyaki restaurant for dinner.  it was delish, but this couple at our grill made the evening pretty awkward.  our waitress was in love with andie's polaroid cam and loved taking pictures of us in the restaurant.  here's just a sample of the awesome images that were captured:

then we went to culver's for some oreo custard sandwiches and whatever mess typod got.  i wanted a br turtle pie, but was afraid that they make them with graham cracker crusts here.... later in the week i went to br to check it out and for future reference they make them like they used to in the 90's!  with chocolate wafer crust!  i know what i'm getting next year!

the next day david2 convinced us that the fair was only 1/2  a mile from our house so we walked.  guess what?  it's way farther than that.  but we made it.  it also happened to be the warmest day this summer and definitely not a day for jeans.  let's just say it was sweaty.

these are some fried cheese curds and fried oreos, which surprisingly are pretty good.

this is typod getting ready to ride the slide!

he loved it.

then we found an indoor part of the fair after we were complete greaseballs.

then we went to chicago for some deep dish pizza, anthros and baseball.  it was the bomb!

typod was loving the pizza:

david2 did too, but he likes looking serious in every pic.

then we took tyler to wrigley field to check it out.  the cubs were on the road, so we didn't get to see them, but it was still awesome.

then we went to us cellular field to check out the whitesox vs. the indians i think.  it was so fun and the hot dogs were really good.  better than dodger dogs even.  thanks for the tickets mom!

then we went to the magic mountain in illinois which is conveniently located 4 miles from the nearest souplantation.  andie decided we all needed to take solo shots while waiting 2 hours in a line waiting for the thunder storms to pass.  magic mountain was lame and made us wait out the rain and then wait for the rides to dry.  it took forevs.

it was also the first time that i wore sneaks to a theme park.  let's just say i felt like a tourist, but my feet were comfy the whole day.

we spent $15 on this refillable souvenir cup because you could get free refills all day.  we decided that if we got 5 refills it would pay for itself.  after 3 cups of soda we stuck with water for the rest of the day.

david kept looking up stuff for his orientation that started the next day.

andie had to hide her purse under her shirt for most of the day because this magic mountain makes you buy a locker at every ride if your stuff doesn't fit in your pockets.  we were able to use some jedi mind tricks to get out of  a few locker purchases, but some guys were sticklers.

i believe this pic is in front of the 4th anthro we went to in 3 days.  what can we say?  we love them.

in their last hours in the city we took them to see the milwaukee side of lake michigan and we took some pictures so you guys can check it out!

i'm pretty sure our guests loved wisconsin and you will too!


the best challah bread.   seriously.

and i made it and i am not very good at making bread.

Time: about 1 hour, plus 2 1/2 hours’ rising

Yield: 2 loaves

1 1/2 packages active dry yeast (1 1/2 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon plus 1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup olive or vegetable oil, plus more for greasing the bowl

5 large eggs

1 tablespoon salt

8 to 8 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup raisins per challah, if using, plumped in hot water and drained

Poppy or sesame seeds for sprinkling.

1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1 3/4 cups lukewarm water.

2. Whisk oil into yeast, then beat in 4 eggs, one at a time, with remaining sugar and salt. Gradually add flour. When dough holds together, it is ready for kneading. (You can also use a mixer with a dough hook for both mixing and kneading, but be careful if using a standard size KitchenAid–it’s a bit much for it, though it can be done.)

3. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. Clean out bowl and grease it, then return dough to bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, until almost doubled in size. Dough may also rise in an oven that has been warmed to 150 degrees then turned off. Punch down dough, cover and let rise again in a warm place for another half-hour.

4. At this point, you can knead the raisins into the challah, if you’re using them, before forming the loaves. To make a 6-braid challah, either straight or circular, take half the dough and form it into 6 balls. With your hands, roll each ball into a strand about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide. Place the 6 in a row, parallel to one another. Pinch the tops of the strands together. Move the outside right strand over 2 strands. Then take the second strand from the left and move it to the far right. Take the outside left strand and move it over 2. Move second strand from the right over to the far left. Start over with the outside right strand. Continue this until all strands are braided. For a straight loaf, tuck ends underneath. For a circular loaf, twist into a circle, pinching ends together. Make a second loaf the same way. Place braided loaves on a greased cookie sheet with at least 2 inches in between.

5. Beat remaining egg and brush it on loaves. Either freeze breads or let rise another hour.

6. If baking immediately, preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush loaves again. Sprinkle bread with seeds, if using. If freezing, remove from freezer 5 hours before baking.

7. Bake in middle of oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden. (If you have an instant read thermometer, you can take it out when it hits an internal temperature of 190 degrees.) Cool loaves on a rack.

Note: Any of the three risings can be done in the fridge for a few hours, for more deeply-developed flavor. When you’re ready to work with it again, bring it back to room temperature before moving onto the next step.

this recipe is an adaptation from the challah recipe from smitten kitchen.  i made mine in my little 5qt. kitchenaid and it worked fine.  you just have to be patient with this recipe.  but it is so worth it.  also, you can freeze one of the loaves and used the extra stale bread to make the best french toast or bread pudding.


Saturday, July 25, 2009

optimus prime vs. megatron

i don't know why every morning 30 minutes before i want to wake up megatron chases optimus prime down our street and right past my window.  you have never heard anything so loud in your life.

i can't wait until winter when we can keep our windows closed and the snow will muffle the sounds of the monster trucks that love to drive down our street.

in other news... new recipes are on their way.  i've been doing a lot of baking lately.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

brewers' no. 1 fans

we were pretty busy this past week and apparently we're the brewers' number one fans.  

first we decided to check out what the beach looks like in wisconsin:

to me it looked like the beach, but then you turn around and you're in a forest.  kind of crazy and kind of too many bugs for me to enjoy it.

then we went to two brewers' games in one week... long story.  the second game we went to we were practically on the field.  and to our surprise they were playing the dodgers... 

notice:  it's a little bit humid in milwaukee, kind of like if you were right on the beach, also notice the terrible haircut i got.  i am never going to learn.  you make the girl promise to only trim off 2 inches and before you know it, you should have just done locks for love.  hair: i miss you and i'm not cutting you until i can go to salon vida in los al.

here is andre ethier up to bat.  i was trying to remember who typod liked to get pics:

and this is manny on first.  trust me--4 innings of brewers' fans drinking and manny up to bat was not a good combination.

then to see what all the obama fuss was about we went to five guys burgers.  it's really big out here (chicago area) and on the east coast.  the burgers were really good, kind of like fatburger meets red robin? the fries were okay.

then the other day we went to see part of the pga classic or whatever that was happening down the street from us.  i didn't recognize anyone, all the really famous players are in europe right now, but a lot of kids stood in line to get this guy's autograph.

we also celebrated bastille day at the bastille festival down by the water in downtown milwaukee.  it was the bomb.  they had crepes and fried cheese curds and mimes and a fake eiffel tower, however, i did not take any pics!  so just imagine it.

coming up this weekend: ward temple trip to chicago, a new deep dish pizza place, italian fest and who knows what else.  summer is fun in milwaukee!  you guys should come.

p.s. we're sad we missed our little sisters in nauvoo.  but 5 hours was just too far.  sorry we missed you: andelish, ambie and jennbunny! we hope to see you soon.

also, we got a huge kingsized bed for visitors, so let's just say, bring whoever you want!  we have room.