Monday, January 8, 2018

Gopher's Not Going to Like This

We got the Christmas tree for Mom and Dad's house a few weeks before the big day.  We met up at our usual tree lot and roamed the rows of Balsam and Fraser Firs.

We found a couple good ones and Dad held them up to compare while a lovely sunset colored the sky behind us.

We found the one!  Dad and Taylor roped it to the top of the car and we raced the couple of blocks home to get it through the window and into the stand so we could enjoy the festive tree smell with dinner.

Later that week I came over again to put on the lights and view one of our Christmas favorites, Winnie the Pooh and Christmas Too.

Dad was whipping up some awesome crab cakes and a vegetable pasta medley, which turned into a test run for Christmas dinner.

The crab cakes were so fresh and delicious, and the pasta was so light and zucchini-filled, that we knew it would be perfect for our Christmas night dinner party.

After dinner I made a delicious decaf K-Cup and added a splash of Bailey's in preparation for that classic 1991 Christmas TV special, Winnie the Pooh.  This one isn't quite as well known as Rudolf, or Charlie Brown, but it's a great Christmas story, and quite quotable.  We had some troubles finding it on any of the streaming services, and since it wasn't on tv earlier in the season we didn't have it recorded, so we had to resort to a lower quality YouTube recording.

The one we found was a screen within the screen and had some animated, moving background so Mom ended up putting a blanket over that side of the screen so we could focus on our lovable woodland creatures and their hijinks.  And as always, we quoted Eeyore, Tigger, Rabbit, and Gopher for the rest of the Christmas season.

(photos by e.hunt)

Friday, January 5, 2018

Cafe Mochas and Little Poinsettias

I happened to have a Saturday off one of the weekends in December, which was a miracle because I work every Saturday the rest of the year, but Saturdays during holiday are all hands on deck!  Anyway, I took advantage of it by joining Mom, Debby, and Nana on a little trip downtown to this cool brunch place called Cafe Osage.

Housed in a charming old brick building with wrought iron details and big, multi-pane windows, it made for a lovely brunch.  Everyone ordered coffee and picked out something from the menu.  They had the classics, but with unique twists.  I ordered pancakes but they came with some strange homemade jam spread on top, which turned out to be pretty good.

Afterwards, we walked next-door to the conjoined shop that had all manner of gardening things, festive plants and pots to put them in, and other assorted books and trinkets.  After wandering around a bit and checking everything out, I settled on a cute little mini poinsettia that is still going strong, I might add.

(photos by e.hunt)

No, Mr. Bond, I Own the Club

Around mid-December, I went to my first Drury Alumni event, held at one of St. Louis' country clubs and complete with complimentary drinks, food, and valet parking.  A couple of my friends were going, and I was curious what one of these things would be like.  So I put on a festive outfit, completed the look with a longer wool coat, and was on my way to the club.

It was an interesting evening.  The crowd was mainly made up of elderly people and then about fifteen or twenty people in the recent-grad age group.  My old greek life advisor and her husband were the only middle-age representatives there.  Part of the reason for the event was to unveil a grand campus makeover, complete with several new buildings, making the center lifeline of campus, Drury Lane, a walking-only area, and updating many of the current academic buildings.

My friend Mindy and I were looking over some of the drawings for said revamp when a man who graduated in the sixties started talking to us about what Drury was like when he was there.  It was pretty interesting hearing about how different it was and then the conversation took an unusual turn.  He asked, "Now, did you all pledge?"  "Yes, we were both in Zeta," I answered.  It was only after his confused "Oh, that's nice," and quick exit that I realized that he meant pledge in the donate-money way, not the join-greek-life way.  Oh well, Mindy and I had a good laugh over it.  And there ends the story of my first Drury Alumni Event.

(photos by e.hunt, and collected from

Holiday in the Apartment

After a couple weeks worth of spending most of the evenings painting, I finished my grand Christmas Tree banner!  Remember Taylor's idea of adding some non-Christmas-y imagery to make it more me?  Well, I capitalized on that and had branches for all of my favorite nerd franchises.  There's Gandalf and Frodo leaving Bag End, the Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer Bumble putting the star on the tree, the animal conservatory behind my parent's house, the grandest Game of Thrones castle in the North, Winterfell, the Harry Potter Hogwarts Express chasing after the golden snitch, and Luke facing off against Darth Vader while the Millennium Falcon outruns a couple Tie Fighters in the background.

I had a lot of fun working on it and coming up with ideas and then converting them to match the overall style of the tree.  Doesn't it look great on the wall?!

The rest of my apartment got dressed up in the Christmas spirit as well.  And it snowed!  Taylor had to fulfill one of his tacked-on job requirements and go in to plow snow (on Christmas Eve, nonetheless), but it was so pretty and so nice to have a white Christmas.

(photos by e.hunt)

Hello Again

Welcome back, everyone, and happy 2018!  It's been over a month since I last posted, and it was a busy month, indeed.  Between hunting down Christmas gifts, several ongoing art projects, family Christmastime traditions, a few holiday parties, and exhausting holiday shifts at work, I did not have much free time.  I did take pictures throughout the month though, so get ready for some recap posts!

(photo by e.hunt)

Monday, December 4, 2017

Those Are Marshmallow Clouds Being Friendly, In the Arms of the Evergreen Trees

Remember my Christmas tree dilemma?  Well, I made a decision to go with number four, the painted tree design!  I stopped by Walmart the other day and found a deep red flat, twin-size sheet that fits perfectly between the windows and only cost four dollars!  After an evening of using my hair straightener to iron out the fold lines and wrinkles, I was ready to start painting.

I turned on the Frank Sinatra Christmas Pandora station and painted away!  So far I like the Christmas imagery, and was mainly just copying the picture I found on Pinterest, but Taylor had the perfect idea that I should change it up a bit.  He suggested I paint Gandalf and the Hobbits on one branch, and the Bumble from Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer on another.  I'll have to do a Star Wars branch as well, and maybe the bird feeder from the Conservatory in our backyard at home.

There's still quite a bit of space left!  I'm thinking another four or five branches.  Any other ideas?

(photos by e.hunt)


Danger *Global Warning* Danger

Good morning, everybody.  I know its a few days late, but welcome to December!  Mom sent me a surprise Advent Calendar in the mail so I've been trying to keep up with opening the little windows every day; still twenty days to go until Christmas Eve!

Last night I made the six mile trek back home for Sunday dinner.  It was a good night for driving around; a lot of people had hung up their Christmas lights because the weather was so nice.  Another effect of the unseasonably warm weather?  Barbecue in December!

Dad and Taylor stood in the light of the tree beacon and grilled a delicious chicken and veggie dinner.   A couple days ago they wrapped another few feet up the tree.  Doesn't it look awesome?!

It's so awesome that our neighbor decided to do a tree of his own.  It looks ok, but we think he needed a helper to get the evenly-spaced wrap look.

And look at that moon!  It was a Super Moon last night, which means that the moon was full and at its closest point to Earth in its elliptical orbit, making it about 12% bigger than an average full moon, and 16% brighter.  Look for another one Monday, January 1st!

(photos by e.hunt, and g.hunt)