Thursday, December 31, 2009

Just Dance!

A few weeks ago I came home to Ali and P running over to hug me any proclaiming "we haven't seen you in so long." Nothing really beats that :-) Well, nothing except for a dance party in my room!
Their brother Jake thought we were nuts...but I have a suspicion that he is kind of used to this type of behavior by now!
Ali doing a very good Chinese Walrus impression...
Another night I came home to the event of decorating Christmas fun! Please note the Hawks player...I think that is Kane....the girls took great care in making accurate cookie-likenesses of their boyfriends!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

No better way to travel....

...than by sled! We haven't set foot in the car since we arrived and last night headed to our favorite North Woods restaurant, Jacobi's, by snowmobile.
Nothing beats riding the Bear Skin Trail, surrounded by pines, with snow lightly falling.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Tearing up the Trails!!!

No trip to the North Woods would be complete without a lot of snowmobiling!
The only bad news on Christmas Day was that Bob's sled wouldn't start. But, we weren't planning on a long ride, so we just went in shifts. First up - Dad and Kelly.
Then Kel and me! As Rich told Dad last year...."Your girls can ride!" Yes, we ride fast and we ride hard :-)
Then, I took my cousin Scott out for the last ride of the night! Fun times!!

Walking in a Winter Wonderland!

I love snow! Especially when it doesn't melt, isn't saturated with mud, and my primary mode of transportation is a snowmobile!!
While Dad was off getting his sled fixed, Mom, Kel, and I went for a walk on Blue Lake Island road....
Bob returned with a fixed sled and a rental for me!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas in the North Woods

Christmas started a little early when I got to "open" my first present on the 23rd. I say "open" because I saw it sitting on the sewing machine. My mom made my sister and I identical Christmas countdown calendars. We had one of these hanging in our kitchen since before I can remember. There are 24 ties where our mom would put candy in little baggies. Kelly and I would switch back and forth each day taking the candy off and counting down for Santa. Now we each have our own!!!!
On Christmas Eve we headed north to our cottage in the North Woods. I can't remember the last time I have been up least 5 years. My dad had been up there earlier in the week and had set out little "touches" like this snowman to greet can't see, but he is wearing a scarf that says Greetings from Bob, Soda, Christy, and Kelly.
Kel and our Mom got to work on decorating the trees.
Apparently it was quite a show complete with Kelly falling backwards off the ladder, Mom pushing her forward into the tree...but the end result was great.
After all that work it was time to enjoy some wine in the amazing Blue Lake (where the cottage resides) glasses.
We got to open a few gifts on Christmas Eve. Kel got a box and a pen that works from preparation for her showdown on Monday at work.
I was pretty proud of my idea for a new Christmas tradition - DVDs. We watched Dad's - Man on Fire with Denzel and Dakota...very good!
Mom got a gift "delivered by sleigh" - which turned out to be a fleece from BJ's - a sporting good store up north. She exclaimed "He went to BJs" to the tune of "He went to Jared's"- easy to please!
Then we did facials. Now, I think we should rewind to the day before when we were talking about doing the facials my Dad said "is that a ladies thing? I don't want to be left out." Yet, he opted out of all the facial fun when push came to shove. (side note...the water here smells like rotten Kel made makeshift nose plugs)
Steaming our pores...
Facials applied!
On Christmas morning Kel and I decided to do 35 minutes of squats, lunges, and abs in preparation for the rest o the day...
Kelly was at the table early to start on her mimosa!
Santa delivered lots of great gifts!
Perhaps the greatest was a Granny's recipe book. She had gone through all Granny's recipe's and written down the the ones she could actually read that weren't too smudged up from the years of baking.
After an afternoon of snowmobiling...more on that later....we had a great night of laughs and amazing food with Uncle Ron, Scott, Lindsey and her husband Kevin.
But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." Luke 2:10-12

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

(new!) Home for the Holidays

On Monday I officially became an adult - how so? I closed on my first condo!!! I've been looking since May and finally found "the" place. My requirements were rather specific - Old Town neighborhood, no more than 5 story building, garage, 2 BR/ 2 Bath, etc. The place I bought ended up exceeding my expectations - 3 BR / 2 Bath (at a 2BR price, love being a buyer in this market!!!) and is exactly what I was looking for.

After closing, I met my parents and sister for champagne! And, as you can see from below, we were already busy picking out new paint colors. The floor guys are busy at work right now and I hope to move in right before the New Year.
Since I have nothing but paint samples at my place, we were off to Quartino's for an excellent dinner.
I love this place....Italian, small plate style, great wine and great decor. Check out the unique old school soap dispensers - powdered soap comes out.

Thanks Mom, Dad, and Kel for all your help over these past few months...can't wait for many more fun dinners in the city!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Banana Shpeel!

If you haven't heard of Groupon...a coupon mailing list for large cities...check it out! Everyday you get a coupon for something in your wonderful city (restaurants, spas, events, etc) that you have 1 day to purchase at 40-70% off.
Kelly and I took advantage of Chicago's Groupon and headed to the Chicago Theater for Cirque du Soleil's Banana Shpeel. It was INCREDIBLE! I highly recommend it! It has the crazy intense acrobatics of a typical Cirque show, but the plot is a "talent show" and there is a heavy dose of comedy that will have you laughing the whole time! Plus the tapping, dancing, and singing were fantastic!
Eeek! Scary red eye pic :-)

Friday, December 18, 2009

They Probably Have Those Rip-Away Calendars

After an incredible time celebrating Christmas in the barrios, we headed back home, dropped off Bessy, hopped in El Prowler, and were off to the Spa for massages :-) Then it was back to the beach.
And the pool....
And, of course, the hot tub...
In honor of the last sunset, I made some guacamole with the fresh tortillas from Super Ley, Merck's cheese (Port Wine of course), crackers, and vino.

We were treated to "dinner and a show" as a huge pod of dolphins cruised by at sunset.

We couldn't spend a whole long weekend in Meh-hee-coe without going out dancing, could we? Is that even a question? Off to Chango's for super fun night of dancing and enjoying the great band.
Already planning a return trip in March!! :-)