Home      About Me      Contact      My Family       Travels       The Kitchen       The Bar

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wine Club - Chianti

Ah, Wine Club. 
I have to admit I love the people and the food possibly even more than the wine.
This past weekend was no exception.
What a great evening!

Vinita and Greg hosted the Wine Club and we sampled Chiantis and delicious Italian food.

As always, my photos don't do the wonderful food justice.
I absolutely loved the dishes Vinita and Greg shared.

I could live on this olive bread.

Toasted baguettes were served with mildly sweetened ricotta (not shown) and Nutella (typical in Italy).  And soooo yummy.

The Chiantis were actually really good. 
I was sure they were all going to be heavy and very dry and I was surprised at the variety in the 6 wines we sampled.
Vinita shared some facts about Chiantis with us.
They sampled several while they were in Italy .
Chianti Classico Reserva are apparently the best with Chianti Classico also highly considered.
Chiantis come from a region in Tuscany.

David and me

Some of the ladies

And the winners were...

#1 Cecchi Chianti Classico
#2 Castello D'Albola Chianti Classico 2007
#3 Castello Chianti Classico D'Albola 2006

Jan and Roger were the big winners last night receiving a church key and wine stopper set.

A fantastic evening with fantastic people.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What We're Reading #8

Welcome to our 8th "What We're Reading" party!!

Ricki Jill and I are your hosts and we're so glad you've joined us.

Please link up your latest reading post - we love hearing what you've been reading lately.
The party will be up until the 25th so you've got time!

This past month I've read quite an eclectic group of books.

My sweet friend Michelle sent Snow Flower and the Secret Fan to me. 
We had been out of touch with for years, but thanks to facebook we're now re-connected and I'm receiving gems in the mail!
I enjoyed this read about friendship and love in rural China in the 19th century.
I refuse to see the movie because I've heard it absolutely pales in comparison.
I've got this author on my to-read list.

Next up was the Litwits' September book (my local super-fun book club).
We read the memoir Shattered Dreams:  My Life as a Polygamist's Wife.
This is not a book I would have picked up on my own, which I think is a benefit of being in a book club. 
I found myself feeling frustrated, disillusioned, and hopeful while reading this book. 
It was hard for me to get into, but by half-way through I was pretty hooked.

And yes, I am finally reading the Twilight series, and now I finally get it.
I wanted to read the books before the last book's movie comes out in November and my Chick Flick Club goes to see it. 
Then I found out they're turning the last book into two movies so I have a year!

It took me two weeks to get past the second chapter of the first book - Twilight.
Once I gave it another try, though, I found myself hooked.
While I sometimes feel the need to kick Bella in the tush, I am enjoying this series.
(Team Cullen!)

And am on the 3rd book now!

So please link up below and let us know what you've been reading!

Happy Reading!
~~ Bonnie & Ricki Jill

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Church Retreat

On Saturday we went out "Youth Camp", a beautiful wooded recreational area, to spend time with other families from our church.

We love going out to Youth Camp this time of year and Saturday was absolutely gorgeous.

We arrived a little too late to take out the canoes this year, but we enjoyed the lake, hiking, and just being outdoors.

Sorry for all the iPhone photos, but I didn't want to carry a camera on our hikes.

Thomas playing at the little beach

David and Brennan hiking around the lake

This shot will be absolutely beautiful in a month with all the leaves in full color.

Brennan was disappointed we hadn't brought swimsuits.

After enjoying a day outdoors, we had a pot luck (that's a "pitch in" for all my Hoosier friends) at the shelter house.  We roasted hot dogs in the open fire and had fun visiting.

Then our family pastor set up "Minute to Win It" games for all of us.

Here's David in the balloon juggling event.
The games were a ton of fun and great because kids aged 2 through adults all got to play.

A wonderful Saturday with friends, family, and the beautiful outdoors.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Catching Up

The carpet cleaners are in today.
Got my car back from having the brakes fixed this morning.
Pool is being closed next week.

Nothing too exciting going on right now, just regular life things.  And I love it.

Between the house, school, volunteering, swimming, tennis, piano, and band - I've been staying busy enough this school year.

Our boys are having a good year but are going non-stop with homework, projects, and sports.
Looking forward to some family time this weekend.

I did want to remind you of the What We're Reading linky party on the 20th!

I'll be hosting this month and would love to hear what you've been reading.

So get your reading posts ready and plan to link up with Ricki Jill and me on Tuesday!

I have been putting up a number of recipes on my cooking blog - check it out here.

And before I leave you, I wanted to share this that a friend sent to me.
David and I got a good laugh.

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Flight Around Town

A few weeks ago we took the family on a city bike ride sponsored by The Rotary and our local airport to raise funds for the USO. 
Camp Atterbury is not far from us - thousands of soldiers come through before beginning a tour of duty in Iraq or Afghanistan. 
The boys' school and various groups in town do a number of projects to support the USO there.

  This 14 mile bike ride was also a scavenger hunt and the funds raised went to furnish a new recreation center at Camp Atterbury.

It was a really foggy morning and excuse all the iPhone photos.
We really rock the helmets, don't we?

The 14 mile bike ride included 15 stops where we got the opportunity to learn about the USO, Camp Atterbury, and the people there.  Here we are asking the director of the Indiana USO a couple of our first questions.

The bike ride kicked off with some presentations and the presenting of colors. 

And then we were off.  We rode all through town on our bike trail system.
One stop was sponsored by our hospital's Healthy Communities initiative. 
The boys nailed the questions (they are drilled on this stuff at school) and then we all had to do something active before we could head to the next stop.  Here's Brennan hula-hooping.

We stopped at our Farmer's Market to sign a large banner that supports the troops. 
Thomas took the opportunity to rest his weary bones in a vacant chair. 

The ride/scavenger hunt was a lot of fun.
But even more exciting was the phone call to Thomas letting him know his scavenger hunt form was drawn and he won a free flight around town with two of his friends!

"I've never won anything in my life!"

Nate, Neil, and Thomas got to fly around town with pilot Chris this past Saturday. 
This is Thomas's second flight around town this summer and he was really excited about it.

Thomas got to sit shot-gun and took the camera to capture the fun.

What a treat - they really had a fun time and Thomas now gets to add another ride to his Young Eagles log!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

My Happy List #4

Join me as I link up with Mamarazzi for her weekend Happy List party!
Here are some of the things making me happy this weekend.

#1 - Skype!
We finally took the time to get it all set up last weekend and talk to my dad in Saudi Arabia.
It is awesome!  We do video chats for free.  It's so great to catch up LIVE!
Can't wait to get Grandma Carolyn and maybe other long distance family members set up.
I realize I am late to this party - do you Skype?

#2 - Addictive Book Series

Speaking of being late to the party, I know I am very, very late to the Twilight party.  Incredulous friends quickly loaned me the books when I said I finally was ready to read them. 
Honestly though, I like coming in a little late so I don't have to wait for the next one in the series to come out.  It's awesome to have all 4 books next to my bed waiting for me.

I did the same with Harry Potter.  I finished #6 about 3 days before the 7th book came out.  I don't know how people do it, getting to a cliffhanger and then having to wait MONTHS until the next book is published.  I'm enjoying Twilight.  So far, I'm Team Edward all the way.
(And don't forget about our "What We're Reading" Linky Party here on September 20th!)

#3 - Really Good Friends
Thomas has the nicest group of friends.  I'm seeing that 6th graders are split into two camps.  Those with older siblings are way savvier than those who are the oldest.  Thomas hangs with a group of smarty kids who are naive and sweet and would much rather play with Legos than think about girls.  I love that.  I'm thrilled to have them hold onto that innocence for as long as they want to. 

#4 - Really Good Teachers
I can't say enough about our 2 teachers this year. 
They are not only really good people, but they are great educators. 
They challenge the kids to the point where the boys think they can't possibly learn it all and then they do. 
They are tough and hold the kids accountable, but are also understanding and encouraging. 
Thomas has a confidence in 6th grade that he hasn't always had.  He seems to really be on top of everything and that is awesome to see. 
Brennan is in a very challenging class and he's amazing me. 
I give credit to the boys, but I give a huge amount of thanks to their teachers because they're enabling the kids to reach higher and are proud of them when they get there.

#5 - Chick Flick Movie Club
I organize a group of friends (men too) to see the latest chick flick when it comes out.
It's so much fun to see movies with friends. 
We usually have 6 or so at any given movie.  At The Help we had 20! 
I've seen some dud movies this year with the Chick Flick Club, but have seen some good ones too.

Have a happy weekend!

Friday, September 2, 2011


I have been remiss in blogging here but I vow to get back to it. 
I've been trying to get my new cooking blog up and running with a few recipes on it!
Please consider following me at http://www.yallcomeeat.com/!

They might look like little angels here but trust me, they are mischievous.

They're lately into pranking each other and it's been so much fun to watch. 
From afar. 
I am staying out of the middle of this little war they have going on as long as nothing is being destroyed or blood isn't drawn.

Thomas kicked off the prank wars by short-sheeting Brennan's bed.  Brennan didn't notice.  He just snuggled under his blanket and comforter.

Brennan (when told that prank wars had begun) stole all of Thomas's clothes out of his dresser and hid them in our luggage closet. 

Thomas switched out the bags in the cereal boxes resulting in Brennan eating Raisin Bran instead of Wheaties and Dad wondering why Kellogg's had shorted him raisins in his Raisin Bran.

Brennan put Thomas's trumpet and trumpet case in the dryer.  He didn't turn it on - thank goodness!

Thomas hid all of Brennan's Wii games.

Brennan took all the shampoo and body wash out of Thomas's shower and hid them.  Interestingly, Thomas didn't realize it for 2 DAYS (until I pointed out that he'd been showering with no shampoo/soap all that time).

When Thomas was spending the night at a friend's house Brennan chopped up Thomas's deodorant and scattered it all inside Thomas's bed.  The downstairs smelled like Axe for daaaays.  We decided that was going too far so Brennan had to clean it up and help me wash the sheets on that one.

I can't share a couple of the pranks they've pulled.  I'm still not over them. 
David thinks they're hilarious.

I'm just super thankful for two boys who get along (usually) and enjoy tricking each other.
As long as they're not tricking me, it's awesome!

Brennan is gone with David for the long weekend.
I wonder what he'll come back to on Monday night??