Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm in a funk.

Christmas is probably one of my favorite holidays. I love to bake lots of cookies and treats, shop for gifts to bless family & friends with, watch holiday movies and sit in front of the fire. But this year...I'm struggling to get in the spirit. Right now the holiday season feels like no other season to me, just that there's a tree in my living room and stockings hanging from the mantle. I'm not in the mood to bake, because my clothes are too tight as it is. I'm not in the mood to shop because my account is too dry. I'm not in the mood to watch holiday movies, because I don't want to watch them alone. I know this would be a little easier if Jason was able to be home more in the evenings, but he's been working really hard so that we could afford to spend Christmas together out in Seattle. I'm blessed by a man who loves me that much that he's working all through the day and the evening so we could have Christmas together, so I truly am thankful for that. It just doesn't make it any less lonely at the moment either.

I know at the 11th hour when we finally arrive into Seattle, it will finally feel like its Christmas. It's been far too long since I've seen my family over the holidays. I miss them and I miss showering them with love, goodies & gifts and cozying up together to watch While You Were Sleeping. It's not the same without family. I want to drink hot cocoa, sit in front of a real fire, play a game, do a puzzle, read a book cuddled up next to my sisters, watch a movie with the family while dad nods off, eat mom's home cooked turkey & stuffing. I'm a traditions girl, I need them. I've tried my best to make some of our own, but its not the same. I want a little boy and a little girl of my own to share these traditions with, to buy gifts for, to snuggle on Christmas Eve with, to sew stockings for, to bake goodies with. It shouldn't be any shocker to hear me say that - I am 31 after all. I know, all in God's timing.

We're going to a Christmas party tonight and I'm not even looking forward to it. Friends are great, but I want my family. I wish we were leaving tomorrow, I'm homesick.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Truflle Balls

Last night was our book club's Christmas Party and we were asked to bring a yummy dessert. I know it comes as no to surprise to many of you that I sat there and mulled and stressed over this decision for a few days. I absolutely love to bake and the look on people's faces when they eat one of my treats makes me so happy.

Finally a friend at work suggested I try to make these Oreo truffle balls that she had at a party the night before. So I looked up the recipe and with a few modifications of my own, made what is some seriously heavenly pieces of goodness.

They also present beautifully at a party and are easy as pie to make! I made two different kinds - the milk chocolate ones have a peanut butter/Butterfinger filling and the white chocolate ones have a mint Oreo filling with some flaked coconut on top.

Rach - this recipe is for you darling!

Milk Chocolate/Peanut Butter Truffle Balls

Ingredients: 1 pkg. Nutter Butter cookies; 2 boxes Butterfinger Minis; 1 pkg. Cream Cheese, softened; 1 pkg Milk or Semi-Sweet Chocolate chips.

Directions: In food processor, grind up a entire package of Nutter Butter cookies until powder-like consistency and pour into a bowl. Then grind up two packages of bite-sized Butterfinger bars (found in the candy aisle), also until a powder-like consistency. Add one whole package of cream cheese into the food processor and process with the Butterfinger until smooth. Remove that mixture from the food processor and add to the bowl with the Nutter Butter powder. With wooden spoon, blend well until fully incorporated. Using a tablespoon or melonballer, spoon onto a cookie sheet covered in wax paper or parchment paper then roll into balls. Chill in refrigerator for 1 1/2 hours. Once chilled, melt entire bag of chocolate in either the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds until smooth or using a double broiler. Roll the balls into the chocolate on a spoon and place onto wax paper. Place back in the fridge to set and chill. Serve at room temperature.

White Chocolate Mint Oreo Truffle Balls

Ingredients: 1 pkg. Mint Oreos; 1 pkg. Cream Cheese, softened; 1 pkg. White Chocolate Chips; Shredded Coconut.

Directions: Same as cookies above, just swapping out the Nutter Butters for the Oreos. Also I found it easier to pour the melted white chocolate on the Oreo balls, since the rolling them in the chocolate left Oreo residue in the chocolate. Then sprinkle a tad of coconut while the chocolate is still soft & refrigerate to set.

Best served at room temperature! Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

What's YOUR Opinion On The Matter?

First of all, before I get started on this heated topic - Jason and I are not pregnant. So don't ask.

Moving on, here's my question.

Many of you are either working moms OR stay-at-home-moms (SAHM's). And I've heard from different women, even single women without kids, what they think the best route for raising their kids should be. I haven't had to cross that bridge yet, but I'm curious. Personally, I've had a job working full time since I was 14 years old. I've never really been without a job for more than a couple months, which was when I moved out to Tennessee with my husband. In the office where I work I've asked a couple ladies, and it seems that they're preference is to definitely work and put their kids in daycare, because "kids need to be socialized" and these women are career-driven. Of course, I'm not going to get the SAHM opinion here in the office, cause well, you're not going to find one in the workplace.

Ideally, if my husband and I could afford it, I would love to be able to raise my kids at home until they're old enough to go to school. And ONLY if financially strapped, then pick up a part-time job. I fully realize that some moms don't have the option and have to work. My best friend was a single mom for many years and had no choice but to work to provide for her daughter.

But here's where I'm curious. Is it more enjoyable to be a Stay At Home Mom OR is it more enjoyable to be a Career Mom? I would think, it would be more enjoyable to be a Stay At Home Mom (Not saying they're working any less) but that it would be much more rewarding to be pouring into your kids lives rather than sitting in a cube answering a phone and to the whims of a boss or two....or three. Though I do appreciate being able to bring home a paycheck, I just think I would get way more satisfaction out of raising my kids and knowing that I'm the one raising them.

What stirred all this thinking was when I caught a few mothers talking on TV. The three moms, who were all friends, were sitting together at the zoo with their kids and one of them said, "This sure beats working a 9-5 job!" And her friend turns to her and says, "No, its definitely harder." And I just kinda sat there thinking - "Really? Is it harder? You're at the zoo with your friends, and your cute kiddos petting the animals and I sit in a cube answering to two men every 5 seconds and being at their beckon call, punching a time clock." I don't know and I'm curious as to what y'all think?

So please, what are your thoughts on this?

Friday, December 04, 2009

So good.

Kristin Bell was on Craig Ferguson the other night and mentioned the Surprise Kitty video from YouTube. I of course, had to look it up to see for myself.




Reeaaaallly makes me want one of these. After all, what's one more animal in the house?

Then I was watching an Oprah episode I had tivo'd and saw this performance of Mary J. Blige & Andrea Bocelli singing What Child Is This. A-maz-ing. It gave me chill bumps.