Wednesday, December 31, 2014

NYE Dip Cafe version 2014

The kids were unanimous in their desire for another dip cafe dinner on New Year's Eve.  Bekah voted for all the same dips as last year but I vetoed and forced all new ones.  Bekah and I planned the menu last weekend, then Jesse picked up the groceries earlier in the week.  Here's Scott assembling his 8-layer-7-layer taco dip.  (The recipe was for 7 layers but Scott counted 8.)
And Alarik lends a hand with the finishing touches on it.

Bekah and Dad cutting up strawberries.

Here's the full spread:
The menu this year included the taco dip with tortilla chips, a hot pizza dip on toasted french bread, caramel apple spice dip with the strawberries and CheezWhiz (from Scott's Christmas stocking) with soft pretzels.  The caramel apple spice dip wasn't looking very promising as I mixed it up so I also stirred up a batch of tried-and-true cream cheese/marshmallow cream dip

I would say that overall, last year's menu was better.  But this was nothing to shake a stick at.  Bekah ranked the dips as follows:
1. Marshmallow/Cream Cheese
2. CheezWhiz
3. 8-layer Taco
4. Caramel Apple Spice
5. Hot Pizza
Alarik barely tried one bit of everything so I'd have to throw out his rankings because they skew the overall results, but here they are anyway:
1. Marshmallow/Cream Cheese
2. Caramel Apple Spice
3. Hot Pizza
4. CheezWhiz
5. 8-layer Taco
Scott and Dad ended up with the exact same ranking:
1. 8-layer Taco
2. Marshmallow/Cream Cheese
3. Caramel Apple Spice
4. Hot Pizza
5. CheezWhiz

And here's how mine fell:
1. Marshmallow Cream Cheese
2. Hot Pizza
3. 8-layer Taco
4. Caramel Apple Spice
5. CheezWhiz

Everyone pretty much agreed that CheezWhiz is a gross product that we won't ever buy. Scott the cheese-lover even gave it two thumbs down saying, "It even SMELLS bad!"  He also hoped that didn't offend Santa Claus.  I assured him he'd be fine.

After dinner we watched the original Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory which we'd gotten Alarik for Christmas.  Everyone enjoyed it.  It was much more ridiculous than I remembered and also had a lot more great one-liners that I'd forgotten about!

We had a great New Year's Eve 2014 and I'm so thankful to have spent it safe and warm at home as a family.  As long as the kids WANT to spend these times with us, we're going to take advantage!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Day After Christmas Fun

The day after Christmas can be as much fun as the big day itself.
Bekah got new skates from Grandma Helen. We didn't want to head out to the rink, but the glare ice on our driveway and in the yard proved useful for breaking in the new skates!
And what's a boy who got a snowmobile helmet and a new snowboard but no snow for Christmas to do?  Well, race his new remote control car out on the ice, of course!
The post-Christmas demolition of the gingerbread house - a long-standing family tradition.
The new snowboard was too irresistible so, lack of snow be darned, they gave it a try anyway.
What's the day after Christmas without Christmas leftovers???

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Christmas Morning

Cheez-Whiz from Santa! (Scott LOVES nacho cheese!)
A deer head for Alarik's bedroom wall. He thought it was a reindeer and named it Olive (the other reindeer)
The ibible player that Bekah wanted and some other Bibley goodies from her stocking.
Alarik fell instantly in love with the stuffed giraffe from Bekah and Scott.
He carted it right up to his bed to meet Bear and Moose.
Roast Beef Ramen Noodles - her favorite!
A new Calvin & Hobbes book.
The giraffe is back.  He couldn't put him down.
Bekah playing to Colorado themed slideshow she made for her Dad at school.
Scott's Santa present and helmet from Mom and we just need some snow!
An exciting morning leaves Scott crashed on the way to Grandma Helen's.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Hunting and Gifts on Christmas Eve

This was a first for us - grouse hunting on Christmas Eve!

No grouse were shot but it was a very nice day for a walk in the woods anyway.
 After hanging out all day, just reading, playing, watching a couple Christmas movies and being outside, we had dinner and got dressed for the Christmas Eve service at church.

I'm not sure why it looks like Alarik is IN the tree in this photo - maybe because he's jumping?

Spruced-up Scott:

And beautiful Bekah:
 After church it was into jammies and putting out milk and hot chocolate for Santa

Then they each chose a present to open.  Bekah and Scott wanted to open their big, matching boxes.

I wish this picture wasn't blurry because I love their matching expressions.

 New snowmobile helmets - no more bloody lips hopefully!

Alarik picked one of his gifts to open and was thrilled with a new Scooby-Doo book!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Grandma's Gingerbread

Grandma Linda made gingerbread houses again and each family had one to decorate.  The competition was fierce and in true grandma-style, each team ended up being awarded a prize.

Team Storlie: Best Imagination and Use of Candy

Team Gross:  Best Use of Pretzels

Team Kallinen:  Best Accessorizing (gardens, mailbox, etc.)