Sunday, January 10, 2010

Biscuits and Gravy

I have always liked biscuits and gravy, and while living in Tennessee, was fortunate to have many opportunities to eat real, southern biscuits and gravy. Right before I moved, while shopping at Kroger, I found frozen packets of Bob Evan's Sausage Gravy. Heat it up, pour it over some Pillsbury's biscuits, and enjoy one of my favorite foods at home anytime. When I moved to Seattle, I looked high and low for a replacement, but to no avail. Even restaurants that served biscuits and gravy weren't as good as what I had in TN. And then one day at QFC, it happened. I found it! I wasn't even looking for it but its like it just stared at me from its shelf. Campbell's Country Style Sausage Gravy. So we bought it. And made it. And loved it! So if you are looking for a quick and easy biscuits and gravy meal, might I suggest Campbell's Sausage Gravy. You won't be disappointed.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Christmas Light Shows

This Christmas season we had the chance to go check out two local light shows. The first was displayed by a couple from our Sunday School Class (nice job Byers!). I believe this is the 3rd year he has done the display, each year fine tuning it even more. It featured 20,000 lights connected by 2,200 feet of extension cord and 94 independent channels to make each light turn on or off. We tuned in our car radio to a local station and the light show was coordinated with 4 Christmas songs and an excerpt from the Charlie Brown Christmas Special. Pretty spectacular show. Here is a picture with most of the lights on.

A few weeks later we checked out Woodinville Wonderland with a couple of friends. This display was in a more rural setting with more land and had two 30-minute radio shows to coordinate the lights. Apparently you can buy software to create your light show. Pretty impressive!

Check them out next year!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Oh Christmas Tree

DISCLAIMER: The flow of this entry is messed up! Pictures are in reverse order and should be after text, but alas, Blogspot is not being very helpful.

Its been quite awhile since I have blogged, but have been having some technical difficulties. I prefer to use Windows Live Writer for posting, but the program was uninstalled from our computer as we tried to remedy our Blue Screen Nightmare and now won't download. Another fatal error. So I am finally biting the bullet and posting through Blogspot, which will take a bijillion years! And probably have funky spacing and layout.

Justin and I have started a tradition for our Christmas tree, each year we want to cut one down. This may not sound like a unique tradition, but neither of us grew up having real trees at Christmas time and the excitement of going out and hunting for the perfect tree has a certain appeal. So we headed out to Mountain View U-cut Tree Farm in Maple Valley several weeks ago. (As in several weeks before Christmas, that's how behind I am on posting). The first time we cut a tree down, Scout was only about 5 months old and came along and was permitted to walk around with us as we chose our tree. But not at Mountain View. So we had to but him back in the car, after he thought he was going to run around and explore a new place. The poor guy was not thrilled.

So we headed off, dogless, in search for the perfect tree. We found one we liked after about 5 minutes, took a few pictures of it and then just as Justin was about to cut it, we thought, maybe there are some better ones, we haven't really looked very much. So we continued the search. And found another good one, and then another and another. But upon closer examination, each had some fatal flaw, like too tall, too short, uneven branches, etc. We finally decided on what we thought to be a great tree, despite a large lopsided branch at the bottom, and Justin chopped it down. Then we went to buy it, but they only took cash, which we didn't have. Luckily we were close to my in-laws and they quickly came to our rescue.

We headed home with tree in tow, Scout happily sniffing it up. When we tried to set it in the tree stand we encountered a roadblock, the giant extra branch at the bottom. So Justin chopped it off, but that left a large bare spot. So we had to keep rotating it to try and get an even side facing forward. Decorating progressed and as it did, we found more and more uneven and bare spots,thus prompting us to name it "Our Charlie Brown Tree." We came to terms with this, thinking it unique, our special tree.

Our next concern was the dog. We have only had one other live tree and Scout was never left alone with it. He stayed in his crate while we weren't home, but we have since stopped using his crate. Its not even in the house anymore since he is a good boy when we are away. Soundly sleeping on his kingsize Tempurpedic bed! We were a little concerned he'd knock it over, or knock ornaments off and break them. But he didn't and we were quite pleased.

And then it happened, at 5:15 a.m. 2 days after it had been put up, it tipped over and crashed to the floor, spilling water and ornaments all over the floor. One side was still too heavy. So we did some more trimming. But once you start, its hard to stop and before we knew it, there was a large bare area on the bottom. So then I had to try and redo some of the lights, which was tricky because the ornaments were more lateral than the lights. What an adventure! All in all it turned out just fine and was our unique tree.

Merry (belated) Christmas!