NaBloPoMo 2015: Happy ThanksgivingChristmasNewYearsValentinesEaster!

I used to be a planner, also super-organized (and this is the part where my husband would insist otherwise and I would end any possibility of a long, drawn out debate, by insisting back "WAS SO!" Because I am a great debater, like that!), but those days seem so long ago.

I knew if I just held out long enough, mismatched plates and glasses would become a thing (are so!).

In our house, the holidays were my Olympics! I researched recipes, collected odds and ends for binge-crafting sessions with the kids and made lists for ALL things holi"daze". 

This year? I'm lucky if I remember to wear matching earrings, and leaving the house with shoes on, and I can't tell you how many times I've caught myself wondering if I had remembered to use shampoo after already having gotten out of the shower.

My mommybrain is all grown up and waiting for someone to strain my carrots, dammit.

Now with Dad in and out of hospitals and rehab centers, since the end of August, I can't seem to think past remembering to eat lunch. Our parents play a large part of our celebrations and, now that our kids are getting older, (us too!) I keep reminding myself that every day we spend together is a gift.

"What's gonna happen on Thanksgiving?"

Thanksgiving has ALWAYS been my son's favorite holiday and now that he's turning 17 (ugh, really?!?) and has the appetite of a 17yo (a.k.a. never NOT hungry) he's taken over the menu-planning :)

"I haven't even thought about it, so don't know what we're doing, Bud!"

Truth be told, I'm still trying to figure out where September went.

"Well, if Papa is still in the hospital, we'll just have to bring Thanksgiving to him, that's all!"

[one beat, two beats]

"I mean, it doesn't matter where we have it, or if we cop a squat in the corner and eat off of trays, as long as we are together, right?!?"

I'm still trying to clear the massive goober that has formed in my throat, so I have yet to get back to him on that one, but I think maybe he already knows the answer and it was more of a rhetorical question, because these kids are way smarter than me. 

"Wait, is that Christmas music you're playing?"

My oldest daughter, on the other hand...

"YUP! Don't judge!"

Gahdfuhbid, it's like she doesn't EVEN know me!!!!

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Behind every strong woman, there's another strong woman, trying to do right by her family, probably.

Katkics Womenz Christmas 2013 Unframed
The Katkics Women, Christmas 2013

I love this picture for so many reasons, but mostly because it captures the women in my family who are usually found behind the camera and are equally passionate about capturing moments, like this one: my mom, me and my sister-in-law Pam.

It's been a tough year for the three of us.  Physically, mentally, emotionally, and whatever else is left after throwing yourself into living life to the fullest...no matter what life throws at you....body, mind and soul-ly.

Continue reading "Behind every strong woman, there's another strong woman, trying to do right by her family, probably." »

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

From Our House, To Your House: It's A Krispie Carol

Merry Krispmas from This Full House 2
Like most families we know, the kids and I have our favorite holiday traditions: decorating Christmas cookies ranks right up there with tricking out a ginger bread house with leftover Halloween candy, if there's any left.  

Assembling said gingerbread house, not so much.

So, when our good friends at Kellogg's challenged us to put a twist on a family-favorite holiday tradition, I thought it would be REALLY fun to replicate This Full House (the house) in Rice Krispies, but then I broke it.

Continue reading "From Our House, To Your House: It's A Krispie Carol" »

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Just in time for the holidaze: scented pine cone wreath.

Holiday Hostess Gift

Last month, my dear friend Beth (a.k.a. Life in The Bat Cave) took it upon herself to reach out and spread a little holiday cheer by organizing a Blogger Ornament Exchange -- sort of like a cookie exchange, only different.

So, I signed right up and guess what?!?  I got paired up with Beth :)  

Now that we're smack-dab in the middle of the holidaze -- you know, that constant "Uhhhhhhh, what year is it, again?!?" feeling you get in between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day -- and because my contribution to the ornament exchange got to Beth's house safe and sound, I thought this would be a real good time to share with you a super-easy craft that would make a terrific holiday host or hostess gift, as well.

Continue reading "Just in time for the holidaze: scented pine cone wreath." »

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Thanksgiving Soup (a.k.a. Black Friday Soup)

Homestyle Turkey Noodle Soup

I have served this yummy soup, every year on Black Friday, ever since the kids were little and I think they look forward to it more than Thanksgiving dinner...me too!  It is a very simple soup that is also super-fast to throw together, which makes it a perfect meal for anytime of the year.

Continue reading "Thanksgiving Soup (a.k.a. Black Friday Soup)" »

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Decking the halls, like there's no tomorrow.

We've hosted Thanksgiving for more than a dozen years and, for all my talk of going on killer dust bunny hunts and finding new places to hide the laundry, I really do enjoy having family over for the holidays -- YES, on purpose!

Decking the halls with kids 2013

Aaaaaand, now that my kids are older (me too, dammit!) I don't worry as much about:

  • The table setting -- nope, it doesn't match, but I hear that's a thing now
  • The food preparation -- yes, some of it comes out of a can
  • Cleaning and organizing the flow of the house -- seriously, I've got teens

I don't bother with shopping lists (having forgotten them at home, most likely) or worry whether I've managed to hunt down each and every dust bunny, because they're sort of like pets and we've even named a few of the bigger ones.

Decking the halls 2013 snowman

You see, no matter how my husband, Garth (not his real name) and I try, we've come to accept the simple fact that, with a family as big as ours, some things just don't go right and, before you can say, "Pass the potatoes," someone's puking all over your nice, clean and shiny floors.

Decking the halls 2013

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Eve, we've got a Nor'easter banging on our front door and, well, I did what any self-respecting lifestyle-type blogger would do:  I decked the halls (okay, mostly the dining room) like there was no tomorrow, literally.

Honestly, with our luck, I'll be super-thankful to have electricity on Thursday, because I am also super-easy to please, like that :)

©2003 -2013 This Full House with a fan page on Facebook and everything!

I'm NaBloPoMo-ing it, feel free to check out what I've NaBloPoMo-ed, so far (PHEW!) and let me know how I'm doing (I mean, 30 posts, in 30 days, really?!?) when you have time, of course!

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.

Teen-friendly Tapas: easy-peasy chicken and waffles recipe.

Chicken and Kellogg's Mini Eggo Waffles
A drizzle of warm honey and a sprinkling of fresh chives dress-up these chicken topped mini waffles, very nicely!

Last month, I was invited to meet with U.S. Olympic legends and athlete hopefuls representing Team USA in New York City to help kick-off the 100 day countdown to the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.

I know, who EVER thought a dork like me would EVER be able to say that, out loud, RIGHT?!?

Aaaaaanyway, one of my favorite activities from this awesome event was participating in helping to create an absolutely awesome brunch, in my pretend kitchen at The Culinary Loft, where I was given the choice of cooking stations.

They had me at chicken and waffles, here's how it ALL went down in 3 easy-peasy steps:

Continue reading "Teen-friendly Tapas: easy-peasy chicken and waffles recipe." »

© This Full House 2003-2017. All rights reserved.