Happenings (vi)

by Jenn (eating bender) on December 19, 2013

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Whew. It was definitely not my intention to take a two-week hiatus from blogging. But between extra work projects (always a good thing), endless Christmas shopping (officially done!) and a desire to make the most of the seemingly fleeting weeks of December, it was necessary. Here are a few particularly fun things that have been “happening” lately.

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1. Our final meeting of Reading Between the Wines in 2013 featured a holiday cookie exchange! Crinkle cookies were a no brainer for me, and I was really happy with how they turned out.

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Nicole, Ari and Sheena’s cookies were all amazing, too. I would be lying if I said I didn’t have a cookie with breakfast every day of the following week. I may have shared some with my family and Bobby, but I made sure there was plenty left for me to achieve this feat.

Nicole also whipped up a delicious batch of potato soup, complete with fixings…

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…and Sheena brought these phenomenal meatballs. We all went back for more of each!

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The book up for discussion this month was Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, a hilarious memoir by Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess. If you aren’t familiar with her, then I suggest reading this post. If you find yourself unable to stop laughing, then pick up a copy of her book immediately.

I truly can’t wait for what’s to come with book club in 2014. It’s been such a great year of reading! So far this year I’m up to 27 books, which just so happens to be exactly what I did in 2012. At least I’m consistent. I hope to squeeze one more in before the new year to get closer to my original goal of 35 (side note: how are we nearly back to January?), but we’ll see. For 2014, I think I may try Katie’s method of counting pages instead. I love that idea!

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2. Last weekend, a food blogger meet up more than five years in the making finally came to fruition when I had breakfast with Shannon and her fiancé, Mike! They were en route to the airport after an amazing week of hiking in Sedona, and we had a great time chatting at Butters Pancakes & Café. Having known each other virtually since 2008 (I still remember the days when you went by “ttfn300,” Shannon!), it felt more like we had simply gone a long time without seeing each other rather than meeting in person for the first time.

Also, the food was delicious. I got the Florentine Benedict with poached eggs and sautéed spinach on an English muffin with hollandaise. The hash browns it came with were pretty tasty, too.

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Now if only Shannon and Mike lived in AZ… :)

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3. I was so excited when Honest Tea contacted me about featuring my recipe for quinoa-stuffed roasted green peppers on their blog. It was great because 1) it reminded me that I haven’t made those in a while and 2) in the spirit of refreshing honesty, it caused me to wonder when exactly was the last time I created a new recipe. I am not sure I want to know the answer, BUT I’m looking forward to trying some things out with my family over Christmas, that’s for sure!

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4. Speaking of my family, topping our holiday wish list this year is two more Packers victories, which would earn them a spot in the playoffs. Last week’s comeback win against the Cowboys was a crazy combination of stress and joy. I’m hoping for some tidings of comfort this week instead.

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5. If you’re celebrating Christmas, I hope it’s a very merry one! We’ll be staying in Arizona this year and are looking forward to participating in the annual Bender family Christmas Day 9-Holer.

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Will this year bring sun, rain or perhaps even a bit of snow (hey, it could happen)? We shall see.

In the meantime, I brought back the snow on my site – one of my favorite blogging traditions.

What’s happening in your life lately? Any big plans for Christmas?

Abrazos,

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jess December 19, 2013 at 3:55 pm

Merry Christmas! December is definitely fleeting isn’t it! Your book club sounds like so much fun! Arizona really seems to suit you guys :)
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2 Erica December 19, 2013 at 8:15 pm

Wow! All the food looks incredible! I want to bake cookies every darn day ;). So cool that you got to meet Shannon. We will meet one day!! Minnie ornament <3. We are having both of our parents over for Christmas. SUPER excited!!

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3 Cara (Twinthusiast) December 19, 2013 at 11:48 pm

Great update. I love your tree!
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4 Susan December 20, 2013 at 10:14 pm

Both the tree and the crinkle cookies are beautiful! :)

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5 Toronto Girl West December 22, 2013 at 3:05 pm

I’ve never had potato soup – I should make some one day!

As for big things lately – we went to China for a whole month!!! lol :) And we got back just a short while ago.
Toronto Girl West recently posted..25 Years LaterMy Profile

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6 Carolyn December 25, 2013 at 11:25 am

Those crinkle cookies look amazing! Nicole’s potato soup is soooo wonderful.
Enjoy the holiday season Jenn!

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7 Shannon December 27, 2013 at 2:45 pm

ha, the days before i came out with my real name 😉 great-looking cookies! i missed having a swap this year. hope you had a wonderful holiday!
Shannon recently posted..Coconut Macarons w/GanacheMy Profile

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