Thursday, December 29, 2011


This is too adorable not to share.

Christmas Recap

Were you naughty or nice this year?

We enjoyed a long weekend of family and holiday cheer, with a good mix of travel in between.

Santa stopped by my brother's house for our extended Olbrich family Christmas on Friday night.

Having so much fun the rest of the weekend didn't lend itself to getting many pictures. I did snag a few of the Bower Christmas annual card game. Avery got in on it this year and helped her daddy play. 

 In other news, our floors are back and installed. There are a few more details that need to be addressed, but it is so nice to be able to use our whole house again, and let Avery roam freely.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Our wood has arrived and is currently acclimating to the humidity level in our home before installation. 

Avery is checking out the new floors that will be installed. 

I also got my act together and put up some more Christmas decorations. {well, Tony did the actual placing of the tree up there. I am way to clumsy to be trusted to do that.}

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Recipe :: Potato & Ham Soup

Here is a recipe for you on this dreary day. Potato and Ham soup, and it is delish!

1 bag {30 oz} cubed/diced potatoes
1.5 cups diced ham :: {I used 2.25 cups of ham, we like ham}
6 cups water
2 8oz pkg of cream cheese
7 tsp chicken bullion or stock
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 tsp dill weed
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Put the water, cream cheese, and chicken bullion/base in pan and bring to a small boil. I diced the cream cheese up and used a whisk to mix. 

Once that is mixed, add bag of potatoes, ham, onion, dill weed, and garlic powder. 

I let it simmer down for around 20-30 min. That's it. Easy Peasy.

Tony doesn't normally like cream cheese, but he loves this soup. He ate some leftovers of this for breakfast once, and his reasoning that potatoes and ham are breakfast food, seemed to work.

The above recipe makes enough to serve 4-6 adults. I normally make a double batch and freeze half. It heats up pretty good, I just add a bit of milk to it when reheating {on the stove of course}.


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

When it rains, it pours...

It doesn't look like it in these pictures, but they are post flood in the kitchen and dining room. 

As we were getting ready to leave the house on Sunday for family pictures and some errands, we heard a noise. I was upstairs getting Avery dressed and thought Tony was shredding some papers. Tony was downstairs and thought I started the washing machine upstairs. As I came down the stairs to tell him that I didn't start a washer, we went into the kitchen to find water GUSHING out from under the sink. When I say gushing, I mean it was flooding. There was water all over. Into the mudroom, all over the kitchen and dining room. Around the hall into the bathroom. Down the heat vents. 

It. was. a. mess. 

Tony ran to the basement to turn the water off. I put Avery safe in her crib and rounded up every towel we had in the house. We found this in the basement. 

This is how much water went through the wood, subfloor, cabinets, and down the heat vents. UGH. 

Suffice it to say that we quickly abandoned our plans for the afternoon. We got it cleaned up as best we could and as Avery went down for her nap, we got the water out of the basement and started to work on fixing the pipe that inexplicably came undone under the sink. 

By Sunday night the wood floor was starting to cup and buckle. I knew this would happen from that much water on it and no fans to dry it out {we didn't have any}. Monday morning, it was much, much worse. 

I called into insurance and into work to have people come out to look at the damage and make a claim. The installers from the store told me right away that the wood would have to come up to dry out the subfloor and  that it was done for. So we started tearing up the floor. 

Our beautiful solid oak hardwood floors that were only 2 years old. Insurance agreed with the installers and are going to figure our claim for the entire wood flooring in our home since trying to feather in the new install would most likely lead to problems. 

So now instead of decorating for Christmas, I had to barricade the living room from the dining room so a certain 1 year old doesn't get any splinters. 

By this point, I had a few melt-downs worrying about insurance and the stress of having our house torn apart    {AGAIN}, worrying about Avery trying to crawl on the busted up floor, and the general sucki-ness of it all. 

Oh and did I mention that we also had a power outage that night?

So we lit some candles, started the fireplace {it is gas} and had a little picnic on the floor with Avery. It didn't really phase her, she handled it great. The power was off and on for about 3 hours. Much longer and we would have seriously considered going to Tony's parents for the night. Thankfully we got power back on and were able to stay home. 

As of now, we are living with the kitchen looking like this:

and looking at new wood samples to have installed {hopefully soon}. Our builder also sent out a plumber to replace the faucet and check all the pipes and plumbing under the sink. They have no idea why it happened either, and hopefully it won't happen again. 

Anybody have an opinion on which we should choose? We really like our current hardwood, especially when it is not flooded! We can put that same down or change it up, so we want to look at all our options, even new options that have come out since we selected when we built 2 years ago. 

It took awhile, but I am now feeling grateful that we were home when it happened, that we can afford homeowners insurance, that nothing in the basement was totally ruined, and that it wasn't worse. 

Can you imagine if this would have happened after we left the house for the afternoon? We would have come home to find Amigo swimming in the living room, and much more would have been damaged. For that we are very grateful. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

My Pinterest Page just got bigger...

LC for Kohls {only $18!}



LC for Kohls $16.20!

I got a new job offer this week, which I am very, very excited about. With this change, I feel like I need a new wardrobe to start this new job. I found these cute pieces for reasonable prices. 

Did you just hear that? 

Cue to Tony groaning at this......

Not sure what it is, but I think most women feel this way. I might need to save my pennies, and do a  little sale shopping. 

Where are some good places?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Thursday Favorite Things - Holiday Edition

Now that the holiday season is upon us, I can literally use "and these are a few of my favorite things..."


A few seasonal movies to set the mood...

This movie to me is perfect...

And of course, the classic Christmas movie


Wish Lists

Mine are on  {MY AMAZON LIST
and a board on Pinterest
you know, just in case you need ideas...

{a girl can dream, but $100 on slippers is kind of ridiculous...}

{to go with my slippers of course!}

To any of these stores: 
Kohls, TJ Maxx, ValleyWest Mall, Jordan Creek Mall, J. Crew, Ikea, Pier One, World Market, Homemakers Henri Bendel, Anthropoligie.


Christmas Decor

Cute clothespins and garland on the stairs

How Should I Decorate for Christmas?

Outdoor with wreaths

I think I will try to get the tree, decorations, garland, etc out this weekend and get my holiday decorating on. 

What is your favorite part of the holiday? Food? Presents {to give or to get}? Travel?