Tuesday, December 25, 2012

merry CHRISTmas.

photos taken by jessi cross.

Monday, December 17, 2012

my first turkey, etc.

This post is a bit late but since I literally have never had so much culinary luck in my life I am going to give you pretty much every recipe Gwynnie and I used on Thanksgiving!
 extra cranberries. backyard snippits. ball jars. candles. = free centerpieces.
 my reward after cooking for 2 days.
the cooks.

First off: G is the best cooking partner ever.  I don't think we have cooked dinner together since 2007 in Fredericksburg, VA when we made some avocado-ey rachel ray 30 min 90 min meal with her roommates   I do remember it being good but that might have been because we had ben and jerry's creme brulee for dessert.

Anyways.  This time we planned like crazy and expected a least a couple failures since the only things we had made before were the classic mashed potatoes/cranberry sauce (me) and the turkey (gwynne).  I had never touched a turkey and some of the recipes were pinterest-ed and let's face it, pinterest recipes are MAJOR flops sometimes.

Here is the menu....try it all.  Big props to bon appetite magazine which once again stole the show with the stuffing.  I will make this stuffing for all future thanksgivings.

A lot of these recipes would be awesome for Christmas (gingerbread, gratin, most beautiful pomegranate salad, etc.) or this weeks dinner so try and let me know what you think!

bon appetite november 2012 cornbread, sausage & pecan dressing
(click on image to enlarge)
 bon appetite november 2012 red & green beautiful salad
apple cider vinaigrette:
puree 1 chopped granny smith apple, 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar, 1 tbsp fresh lime juice in blender.
strain mixture through a sieve into a medium bowl, pressing down on solids with spatula.  discard solids.  
whisk in 1 Tbsp. minced shallot and 1 tsp. sugar
Whisk in 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp safflower or grapeseed oil until well blended.
season with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.
cover and chill.  rewhisk before using.  
sweet potato gratin
chocolate gingerbread

here it all is (including classic mashed potatoes, pumpkin custard, martha stewart turkey & cranberry sauce.)
and gwynne and i's wine comparison.  

Monday, December 10, 2012


 our street on Sunday evening.
 the twins at 29 weeks old.
 even though he has been slammed at work he hasn't neglected his little family or his sidewalk.
this little snugglebug is...dare i say this on the world wide web...
pottytrained!  ?!  ?!  ?!  ?!
we shall see.

Christmas.  January.  Twins.  
In less than 10 weeks I will be able to feel their tiny hands around my fingers while they (prayerfully, hopefully, tandem-ly) nurse.

thank you Lord.  for all of it.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

a conversation with my daughter

Tonight at the dinner table while eating.
This is verbatim (we wrote it down #dorkyparents).

Reagan: Doggy
Me: (mouthful of pasta)
Reagan: Want dog.
Me: Honey, it's a lot of responsibility to have a dog. It's probably going to be a while.
Reagan: Yes
Reagan: How bout baby one?
Me: (laughing hysterically)
Reagan: Buy one.

I love toddlers. I love how they just burst out new, random sentences. I love laughing at ourselves. I also love life without a dog. Let's tackle these twins first, Rea.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

two years of joy.

happy birthday, Reagan Rosalie!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

happy thanksgiving.

From our home to yours! Love, the d's + gwynnie.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Those big blue eyes. Drool, so much drool. Fuzzy red bird hair. Mushy cheeks. Stubborn nurser. Content baby. Sweetest smiles. Tons of giggles. Aware of everything. So much has changed, so much has stayed the same.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

two are better than one.

Reagan and I walked into the radiology clinic in a rush. I decided not to even try to find someone to watch her because I wanted her to practice sitting still and I knew it would be a short appt. At 20 weeks I was feeling awesome, a couple of different symptoms then with Rea, like a large varicose vein in my leg, but mostly I felt a lot the same.

Jd had just started his new job so I told him I would bring home a lot of pics. As I lay on that table I thought about Reagan and if she would behave, my grocery list, and if I would make it to babysit Hudson in time. My mind was not on the life inside me.

The tech put the jelly on my tummy and in about 30 seconds he casually asked if I knew I was having two babies. I said yeah, I have two babies. One in that chair and one in my tummy. No he responded, you are having twins.

Heart stopped. Tears in my eyes. So many thoughts. Total shock. Complete joy. He let me call Jd and our moms right on the table. I next called my sister Lucy. I don't remember who I called next. The day was a crazy, happy blur.

I have told people in the past that I would never want twins. Many people. Not because I don't want a lot of kids. I think you all know that's not true. I just love the newborn stage and being pregnant so "two for one" didn't seem like "my style." Twins don't run in our gene pool as far as we know. I realize now this was a pretty dumb comment to make but unfortunately I make many unwise, unnecessary comments...working on that.

Now I can't imagine anything different. I do not have fear of having two at once because I know God made me to be their mom. I can already see the way God made Reagan to be their big sis... she is so good with babies and very independent. And no, I am not afraid of being sooooo HUGGGE. I think that's the number one comment I get. Praise The Lord for a husband that makes amazing coffee and a new house with plenty of room for guests to stay and help. It will be hard sometimes but it will be beautiful. I really believe that.

I am not ready for this adventure. I don't think we are ever ready for big changes. I am hoping my little ones stay in there snug until valentines day but realize it could be a lot different. Today I just want to shout to the rooftops how thankful I am for the blessing of two at once. Praise God.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

what a joy.

What a joy it is to know that the government will be on Christ's shoulders, and that there will be no end to the increase of His government and peace...that His kingdom will be established with justice and righteousness from then on and forevermore. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom...a kingdom that cannot be shaken. You will never be voted out; no coup will ever dethrone you. For all eternity You are the king of kings and the Lord of lords. To you be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen!

from day 6, 31 days of praise, Ruth Myers

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

walk humbly.

He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8 NKJV)

This is the verse that popped up on my verse of the day app. Quite fitting since it always reminds me of my man and it is his 29th bday today!!!!! I am so blessed to have such a humble, strong, noble, hilarious, amazing husband that chooses to walk with and follow after the Lord. And as you will see in this random collaboration of photos, Reagan and the twins are equally blessed.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

the past few days.

hot cocoa dates at home. runs with daddy. gutter removal.  loving dark nails.  reading all the time.  auntie annie comes to visit.  twin baby dolls from auntie annie named "sally" & "john" by reagan.  romney/ryan shipment.  apple, onion, sauerkraut pork chops for dinner.  

psalm 40 is my jam this week.

I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,
    and he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
    out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground
    and steadied me as I walked along.
He has given me a new song to sing,
    a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
    They will put their trust in the Lord.
Oh, the joys of those who trust the Lord,
    who have no confidence in the proud
    or in those who worship idols.
Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us.
    Your plans for us are too numerous to list.
    You have no equal.
If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds,
    I would never come to the end of them.

Monday, October 22, 2012

frame wall tutorial

Frame walls are a great way to fill a large empty space on a budget. Most of my frames are handmedowns, garage sale finds, from goodwill or target clearance. The key to a good wall is beautiful, meaningful photos/artwork and careful placement. About a month ago, I created a frame wall in our new home.
I wanted to include this clock so I had Jose hang it first.  I had no real thought process in where I put it.  I prefer things off centered so I picked a random, low spot.
Then I just started positioning frames around the clock.  Hanging went quickly because of the below "toothpaste" method :)
I had all frames in a pile on the table and chose them one at a time based on color, size, and who was in the photo.
I squeezed a big dollop of toothpaste over the hanging area (make sure it's a very nice sized dollop)
Then I pressed the frame firmly against wall so I could see where JD should hammer in the nail.  While JD hammered I chose the next photo.  We had it finished in one nap.
The end product.  I guess it's a good thing that there is some room for my wall "to grow."

Friday, October 19, 2012


Reagan loving on Brekken Bradford, born not even 3 weeks ago.  She calls him "brekky" and reminds us about 6 times a day that baby brekky had a poopy diaper (after seeing him getting changed at hospital).  He is a sweet blessing in all of our lives.

What are you up to this weekend?  I want to lounge around the house with my family and actually finish a whole cup of coffee in the morning.  I also want to find a burger joint in this huge city that even remotely compares to the fine establishments of "Dell's" (Grand Forks, ND) or "Ray's" (Reading, MI).  I don't think it will happen.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

a weekend in the great lake state.

Sweet times with my el ladies.

An amazing brother that hung out with me 24/7 and introduced me to the best chicken wings ever. Ever. Ever.

2 mamas and 3 babies.

The twins!!!! @20wks.

An incredible wedding.

Mr. & Mrs. Carson & Ellen McLean!

Literally everyone was dancing. But we had just discovered the dessert bar.

From the cider mill down the road...too good to be true.

They joined the band. Berlucchi weddings are on par with Dunham weddings....reason number 188 to have a big family!!!

My favorite wedding dress of all time on one of my favorite people of all time.

Missed this lady too much but so thankful for a quick trip to Mich and too many people I love that are way too far away.