Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas with the Coombs

Here is the Coombs Family Interpretation of the Nativity Scene:

1. Two angels (one is very upset and the other is pre-occupied with Rapunzel's hair)
2. Chubbs playing a sheep (or some sad-looking camel)
3. A capsized Pirate Ship
4. A 20-pound baby Jesus
5. Four Shepards + one Joseph (although no one seems to know which one is Joseph)
6. Festive shoes

We don't know where Mary is either.

Christmas was wonderful. It always is at my mom's house.

It's time for another nonsensical list of my holiday happenings:

Mi Amigos Chimis and Enchiladas
Toffee. Lots of it.
"Single Ladies" London dancing
Grant dancing
Carson dancing and laughing
Easton playing the piano
Mitch playing the piano
Emerson break dancing ASU style
June refusing to dance
Cherries Jubilee
Santa bag on the doorstep
Excitement as gifts are collected
White Elephant
Bathroom jokes brought to you by the Potty Putter (or whatever it was called)
Christmas Story Lamp
Ron Swanson Pyramid of Greatness
Last Minute Christmas Shopping
Dinner at Sauce
Sacrament Meeting
Mom's Coffee cake & Bacon
Watch movies
Flying helicopters
Full Stomachs
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Like everybody else on this planet, I've been busy the last few days. It seems like for every 3 things I accomplish, I usually add about 10 more things on my to-do list. I really should change my system.

Two things I'm excited for...
#1- My mom always plans an amazing Christmas dinner, which means two things: Plenty of delicious food and plenty of Christmas magic for the kids.
#2- William's family is coming to town next week for Alan and Jenny's Baby Blessing, which means two things: Plenty of delicious food and plenty of laughs.

Life is good in December.
Reading: this talk. It's a good reminder of priorities during this time of year.
Watching: this trailer and this trailer. 2012 is going to be a good year for movies.
Writing: a list of goals for this next year. Much of it has to do with photography and cooking. And learning how to use watercolor paints. And possibly planting a garden. And organizing every square inch of my house. AND I'm already tired.
Laughing at: June's newfound love for clapping and dancing. OH. MY. GOSH. Just when I think she couldn't get any cuter...

Monday, December 19, 2011

World Premiere

The wait is over:

Willy-B-Licious (William) and Pawz Jenkees (Me) present: "Frosting" featuring Mizz June.

Can you tell William's mixing skillz have improved? And Mizz June's sounds are seriously the "FROSTING" on the cake.

This is our 3rd Christmas we've written a song. It's probably my favorite tradition, you better believe we'll continue it. (I think by 2019, we'll release our Christmas album with all our songs, then rake in the royalties for the rest our lives.)

Here are past Christmas songs from previous years:

2010: Baby It's NOT that Cold Outside

2009: Gather Around (It's a Campfire Christmas)

(video by Robz)

Campfire Christmas Remix: Christmas Eve

(Can you tell I was thrilled to do this video?)

Merry Christmas World!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Awkward Picture of the Week

If you look/listen really close to the above picture, I'm gritting my teeth and saying "TAKE THE DANG PICTURE. I'M HUNGRY." Truly.

We recorded our Christmas song today. I'm not gonna lie: it's our best one yet. I don't want to go too much into detail about our song before it's released, but if this was 1995, we would probably be a big deal.

Listening to: our Christmas song, DUH.
Eating: toffee. So. Much. Toffee.
Elated: about me and my buddies being nominated for Harry Potter Fans of the Year. Please vote "Hailey and friends" here. It takes 2 seconds. Unless you vote twice, then it will take 4 seconds.
Anxious: about Christmas shopping. William and I still haven't gone yet. How many more days?
Watching: my favorite scene from Elf. ("Why is there a skeleton over there? If I squint he looks like a pirate flag.") When Will Ferrell screams after getting pricked, I think James Caan is laughing.

Monday, December 12, 2011

"Christmas Morning" Suppa Club

Carli hosted Suppa' Club in December, and it didn't disappoint. We did a breakfast theme, paired up with a Christmas morning theme. Of course, we came in our PJ's and lined up in the hall (by age, notice the boys are in front)...

dashed upstairs...

and opened up our "gifts". (Carli wrapped our plates and silverware).

(I love Daphne's intensity in the above photo. If she's this intense now, I can only imagine what she's like on Christmas morning.)

And Carli even gave a little Christmas gift to June. It's a book called "You Will Be My Friend!" It's seriously the funniest book I've seen in a while. If you like forest creatures and bears that like to hug, you should really get that book.

Here's Carli reading it to a very attentive June:

As for the food, everything was AMAZING, of course. We served up yummy pancakes (go Ashlee), Bacon monkey bread (go me), fruit salad (go Carli), these maple scones (go Daphne)...

... AND Spinach Bacon Quiche. I didn't get a picture of the quiche because it was in the oven while I had my camera out. But it was amazing. Here's the recipe. It's a Paula Deen, so of course it's creamy deliciousness. William even loved it, and he's not a fan of quiche. Good job, Natalie.

Merry Christmas, Suppa' Club! And to all, a good morning!

P.S. My apologies to Ashlee for not getting any photos of you. I'm just going to handcuff the camera to my hands so I remember next time to get a pictures of everything and everyone.

Oh and I'm still amazed with Suppa' Clubs knowledge of Quiktrip food and the Kardashians. We are seriously destined to be together.

Bacon Monkey Bread - The Perfect Christmas Morning Breakfast

This is a variation of this recipe, that I found on Pinterest.

It's a really good recipe for Christmas morning because there's hardly any work required. I served it up at this month's Suppa' Club and it was goooo-oood. I was in charge of bringing the meat, but I also wanted to make monkey bread, so why not just add bacon to it?

Bacon Monkey Bread (makes a dozen)

-Refrigerated Biscuit Dough (Cut each biscuit piece into thirds)
-Ground Cinnamon
-Sweetened, Condensed Milk
-12 slices bacon

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Line bacon onto cookie sheet that's covered with foil. Cook in oven for about 15 min, or until cooked thoroughly BUT NOT CRISPY. You need to be able to fold 'em up. Allow bacon to cool slightly.
3. Place 1/2 teaspoon of butter, teaspoon of sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon in each of the muffin tin cups. No mixing required.
4. Roll dough into walnut sized balls. Place 1 in each muffin tin. Then fold bacon into each muffin tin. Place other two dough pieces inside, with the bacon in the middle of the three dough pieces.
5. Add another 1/2 teaspoon of butter, 1/2 teaspoon of sugar, and a dash of cinnamon on top of the dough. Again, no mixing required. Here's what it might look like:

6. Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly.
7. Remove from oven and immediately drizzle with condensed milk over each one. BE GENEROUS.
8. Enjoy the baconated Monkey Bread.

Friday, December 9, 2011

What I do when I'm sick.

Here's me wrapping June's presents right in front of her face, as she plays with her plastic nativity set:

She kept lunging for those scissors... I guess I know what to get her for next Christmas.

It hasn't been an easy week. Whoever started this sickness craze should eat a tube of chapstick. First, William was sick. Just as he was feeling better, June and I got sick. June was a champ through her first brush with the common cold. I actually think I was more whiney than she was.

While I was sick, I stayed up late to window shop online for Christmas presents:

Just in case you feel generous, here's where to purchase those items: 1/2/3/4
You better believe I plan on wearing those shoes AND hat, WHILE riding that bike with William and June, WHILE our new puppy leads the way to QT.

Tonight William and I ate Chik-fil-A and wrote our annual Christmas song. It's gonna be a treat. We're debating on whether or not we should make a music video. We decided there's not enough video footage of us on Youtube.

Get ready.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Family Pics

"Whoa whoa whoa whoa... Christmas is how many days away?!" -June

A BIG thanks goes to Debbie (seriously, thank you), our tripod + timer, and a patient Junebug for a good family photo afternoon.

Here's just a FEW of our pictures:

I'll show the rest and our Christmas cards when they're good and ready.

Yay for awkward family photos!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Rudolph with your nose so bright...

When William is sick, it's no fun around here. Not only am I doing everything I can to prevent June and I from getting sick, but William just simply isn't himself. It's hard to get things done around here.

So instead, I continue my holiday crafting.

I'm not sure if this is morbid or awesome:

I'm gonna say awesome now, then morbid when June is old enough to realize who Rudolph is.

And it only took a few supplies:

Paper-mached reindeer, wood plaque, wood stain, white spray paint, hot glue gun, and a red pom-pom. Saw the head off, spray paint it, stain the wood plaque, glue head and nose on, hang on wall, watch as children gasp in horror that Rudolph's head is mounted on your wall.

Listening to: Harvest Moon by Neil Young. It's very calming. I'm not quite into the Christmas music yet... maybe when we break out our gingerbread houses.
Eating: Tillamook Cheese and Utah Apples.
Thankful for: talented people that do free printables. I saw that project on Pinterest and was planning on making it, but couldn't find a decent world map for cheap. Then Angela came along, and now all I have to do is print it out. Thank you imaginary friend of mine, Angela.
Anticpating: getting our family pictures taken tomorrow. We were rained out on Saturday, William was sick today, so we're trying again tomorrow.
So proud: to be featured on Mugglenet. Thank you Hilary and Harms!! Best Christmas present ever. Oh how I miss our Potter Parties!

Friday, December 2, 2011

He's makin' a list...

2011 was a good year for us.

Probably because of this sweet face:

But there's still more to be done before the year is over.

Let the games begin...

- Paint June's Room
- Paint Office Desk
- June's homemade gifts

Traditions (and possibly create more):
- Write and record Christmas Song
- Go to Temple Lights
- Make Gingerbread Houses
- Family Pictures
- Santa's grab bag
- Lots and lots of movie watching (see next list)

- Elf
- Home Alone
- Christmas Story
- Christmas Vacation
- Muppets Christmas Carol

- Queen Creek Olive Mill
- Lucille's BBQ
- New TV

To Make and Eat:
- Dana Toffee
- Homemade Cheesecake
- Laura's Butterscotch Rolls

Thursday, December 1, 2011

"Get the biggest aluminum tree you can find, Charlie Brown, maybe painted pink."

December came really fast. It feels like just yesterday I was salivating over the Bacon-wrapped Thanksgiving turkey... and now I'm eating a chocolate piece from Day 1 of my Christmas advent calendar?

So on behalf of December 1st, I did my first Christmas craft.

I copied a $25-$38 Anthropologie holiday decoration, and made a few of my own using things I already had.


3 jars, spray paint lids, hot glue mini trees inside lids, add a tiny pine cone, fill with sugar, then seal the jars... instant snow globes.

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce




a m a z i n g.

I found it on Pinterest, via Pioneer Woman.

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

2 tbs Olive Oil
2 tbs butter
1 whole medium onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans (15 oz each) tomato or marinara sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup heavy cream
Grated Parmesan cheese to taste
FRESH basic, chopped
1 1/2 pound pasta

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta water.

Heat butter and oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute for a minute or so. Pour in tomato sauce and add salt, pepper, and sugar to taste. Stir and cook over low heat for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and stir in cream. Add cheese to taste, then check seasonings. Stir in pasta and chopped basil and serve immediately. (Thin with pasta water before adding basil if needed.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lemon Drop Cookies

I made these cookies for my sweet cousin Emily's baby shower. (Of which I would have loved to share photos, but I forgot my camera that night.)

I absolutely loved baking them. Not only do you get to zest an entire lemon, but you get to grind up lemon drop candies! (Do I sound lame? Well, it's nice to mix things up sometimes, okay?)

Lemon Drop Cookies (via See Jane Cook*)

2 c. sugar
1 1/2 cup butter flavored shortening
3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. lemon extract
4 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp. salt
Finely chopped zest of one lemon
1 (6-oz) package lemon drops (you can find these in the candy aisle at Target or Walgreens)
2 c. powdered sugar
juice of two lemons

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In mixing bowl, cream sugar, shortening, and eggs; add flavorings. Stir in dry ingredients, lemon zest, and crushed lemon drops (I crush them in my blender). Roll into balls, flatten slightly, and bake on parchment lined (if you don't use parchment, cookies will stick to pan) baking sheet for 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool slightly on pan for a couple of minutes. Make a glaze by mixing powdered sugar with lemon juice. Brush glaze over cookie tops. Let cookies cool completely. Makes 4-5 dozen cookies.

*Disclaimer: I know, I know... I use A LOT of recipes from See Jane. But seriously, can you blame me?!

It's written in the stars...

...June's gonna have some good times with her cousins.

(I love this picture because it looks like their flying, so of course I had to add the stars.)

June got to meet some new cousins these last couple weeks.

The above cousin is Kensley, Alan and Jenny's new baby. She was born November 23rd (which also happens to be Kent's birthday... definitely a lucky day). I can't believe how huge June is compared to tiny Kensley. She is so beautiful. I can't wait to watch June and Kensley build forts and play house.

June was also privileged to meet Andrew (Laura and Steve's baby) when we went to Utah for Thanksgiving. Oh boy, is he a cutie. AND he was one of the most calm babies I've ever encountered, except in this picture:

I can't wait for Andrew and June to build forts and play ninjas.

Yes, it doesn't matter which cousin is involved, there WILL be plenty of forts being built.