Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Holiday rush

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind.

It all started when I got a call from the OTC Humane Society about a woman wanting to meet Tasha. The lady lives in Chico and was researching possible dogs for her father, who had recently put down his 19-year-old rat terrier. So on a Tuesday evening we took Tasha to meet the whole fam. On that Friday afternoon, we drove Tasha out to her possible new home in Ord Bend, which is a very small town between Chico and I-5. We spent an hour or so with the woman's father and his girlfriend as Tasha ran around the house like crazy. It seemed like a great place for a little doggy, but she still wouldn't let the couple even hold her. We left thinking that she had a 50-50 shot of being adopted by them. Welp, the very next day we got a call that they were already at the shelter in Orland filling out the paper work.

So after almost three months, Tasha was adopted. It would be a lie to say that we weren't very sad, but we kept telling ourselves that this was the best option for her. So, we had a few more hours with her before we drove her out to her new country home.

It all happened very quickly, but we were very thankful to have her be adopted before finals week and not during. So we put on some smiles and thought positive thoughts as Kevin hammered through his finals and I finshed up my papers and tests. It seemed like the longest week, but then it was over. I thought we would have time to relax, but we had to get busy knitting and crocheting.

I had planned to make something for (almost) everyone in my family instead of buying gifts to save money. Kevin decided to do the same. So we set out to finish up the 20 something gifts we had listed in about a week and a half. Kevin knitted so many scarves, and I took to knitting or crocheting one beanie after another. The result...

I don't even think that was all of it, since we were knitting right up until the Christmas Eve. We were so happy that everyone really liked their gifts and all the hard work - and sore fingers- paid off. Since Christmas I knitted a beanie for myself and one for Kev, a surprise (sort of).

We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas morning with our families in the Bay Area. Then on Christmas day we went to Kev's Grandma and Grandpa's house in Modesto for a wonderful dinner and family time. Then Kevin braved one of the worst driving experiences of our lives, driving in the pouring rain from Modesto to Angels Camp in the dark, definitely not doing that again!

We got to spend some time with my niece and nephew, and spent the night in Angles Camp. Daddy made us an awesome breakfast in the morning and we were on our way.

Thankyou to everyone in our families for the great gifts, your support, and love. It's great to be home :)

Now we are getting ready for my step-brothers wedding on New Year's Day. Grandpa bought me two nights at the Rose Hotel downtown, so Becca and I will stay there Thursday and Friday night, thanks Grandpa! Can't wait to ring in the new year with a big celebration, a great new dress, and some of my favorite people.

Also, Kevin an I will be celebrating 4 years together on the 1st. Can't wait for many, many more!
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Sunday, December 5, 2010


Kev and I spent most of Thanksgiving Break here in Chico. The Sunday prior to TG, Kev and I made our first (very own) Turkey! It turned out AMAZINGLY yummy, we we're very proud of ourselves. While he tended to the bird (thanks Grandma Landucci for all the baking tips!), I worked on the side dishes. Yum yum yum.

Not bad lookin' huh? The rest of the week we just hung around the house, ran errands, relaxed, and went for a walks around  the neighborhood and campus (I had to renew and check out some more books from the library for another research paper). Kev got to show me a concrete slab that he helped create for one of his classes, that's it in the pic of him below.

Thursday morning we got up bright and early to head "home" for the real TG. We were nervous to see how Tasha interacted with Kev's parent's dogs Max and Petey. Tasha stayed at their house in Livermore while Kev had TG with his Dad, Stella, his sister and his Nana and Papa. I went to Roseville to spend the day at my Aunt's house. We had a lovely meal, but I couldn't wait to see Gaby, Dominic, Grandpa and Bubba.

Gaby is already writing upper and lower-case letters, spelling names and words, and drawing very well for a 4 year old! I couldn't believe how well she can write and draw, I was a very proud Auntie. And of course, Dominic has so many words. We stayed at a hotel and went back to Bubba's (my Aunt) for a Friday morning brunch (also very yummy). Thanks Bubba for two great meals and a happy TG :)

I met Kev in Modesto on Friday to visit his grandparents. Tasha got to meet the whole gang-Grandma and Grandpa Landucci, dogs Henry and Slinky, but the cats Rocky and Grace evaded her capture, lol. Tasha seems to do very well with male dogs, she was interested but more laid-back than I thought she would be. Slinky seems to be very fond of Tasha, he even sent her a little love e-letter! She was very flattered, but we're not sure that she is looking for "anything serious" at the moment (she is, after all, up for adoption). Hehe. But we are so glad she was able to make a friend! Anyways, I was able to get a few cute pics of the love-birds.

We spent a few hours catching up with Grandma and were glad to see that Grandpa Leo is recuperating well from his hip-replacement surgery. Wishing him quick and less-painfull progress!

It's a very rainy Sunday evening here in Chico. I have been crocheting like crazy since Kev's Grandma gave us a bunch of yarn and needles. I'm having so much fun learning. This lady is a saint. Her blogs, YouTube videos, and instructions are amazing. She has taught me everything I have crocheted so far. I plan on posting a picture here soon of all the items I have made.

We have one more week of school, then Finals Week. Wish us luck!
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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

72 years young

Happy Birthday to the greatest Grandma to ever grace the earth with her presence. She would be 72 years today. We miss you incredibly Grandma. Not one day goes by that I don't think about you.

You are so beautiful. And of course, the Queen of all Queens.

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Monday, November 15, 2010


It's a tough Monday, after such a long, beautiful, and relaxing weekend.

We actually did a little bit of everything this weekend--played video games, went out for a few drinks and a beer, worked on some knitting projects, took Tasha for a few walks and rides, barbecued, cooked, homework, watched football, etc.

On Thursday, Tasha helped me with a tie-blanket I was making for a "calm space" at work. She has taken to laying out in the rock area in the backyard, basking in the November sun.

She sits on one of my Dad's old chairs like this, straddling the back. She stares out the window while we are gone and growls at passerby/intruders.

And  she watches Kev play PS3.

On Saturday night we went out with some friends for a few drinks. These are the only pictures I got, lol. We went to Panama's for a tea and then to the Bear for some cold Sierra Nevada crystal wheat and some cheap but oh-so-yummy cheese fries.

Here's Kev taking Tasha for a walk around the neighborhood, lookin' handsome :)

We were lucky enough to snag these pics on Sunday. Tasha always falls asleep on her back, especially if were rubbin' her belly. Seriously, isn't she just so adorable?!?

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veteran's Day

Happy Veteran's Day and a big THANK YOU to all who have served, are serving, and will serve this beautiful country. Especially both my grandfathers, my cousin Jeff, Kevin's Papa and eveyone else in our families who has served in the past.

A relaxing day at home, back to school tomorrow, and then another weekend.

Wishing my future sister-in-law, Cynthia, a wonderful bridal shower on Sunday. I'm so sad I will not be there :(

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Saturday, November 6, 2010

All Things Homemade

Kev and I have been spending a lot of weekends "in" since its been raining the last two or three weekends. So, we've been finding various ways to keep ourselves busy, besides homework, of course. 

I made a different version of "peanut butter balls"--a snack favorite at the preschool I work at. They are easy, simple, fairly nutritious, and so yummy.

For 8-9 PBBs
1/2 cup PB
1/4 cup and a spoonful of honey
1/2 cup oats or rice cereal

Mix together in bowl, leave plain or roll in graham cracker, or drizzle chocolate syrup over, or add coconut flakes, or powdered sugar--the possibilities are endless!

I made the first three varieties for Kevin to try--they didn't last long!

That same weekend, Kev picked a bunch of pomegranates from our two trees in the front yard.Such a great winter fruit, and fairly sweet. We squeezed so many seeds to make some fresh juice which Kevin thoroughly enjoyed.

I looked up pomegranate facts and was surprised to read that grenadine was originally made from pomegranate juice, who would have thought?! Since we all know how much I love Shirley Temples, Kev and I decided to give it a try.

Home-made Grenadine Syrup
1 and 1/8 cup fresh-squeezed pom. juice
1/2 cup sugar
Mix and bring to boil, simmer 10-15 minutes until thickened slightly

The grenadine we are familiar with is made from mostly high-fructose corn syrup. Pomegranate juice is not even a listed ingredient. I always assumed it was made from cherries. It turned out great and tastes even better than Rosie's.

It has been "cuddle weather" and Tasha loves to bury into our blankets and wear home-sewn sweaters, when she isn't playing "attack dog."

 Thursday we visited our favorite thrift store, the Thrifty Bargain. It was 50% off Thursday. We came home with this functioning, clean, 10$ bread maker. Now, we are home-made bread bakers as well. Daddy, I need some of your recipes!!

 Our first loaf!!!

Our next project(s), knitting!!
We got some cheap needles and yarn from the Thrifty Bargain and away we went. Kevin has already knitted himself two beanies, and I have made myself a neck warmer/scarf for winter biking. Kev is now working on a wool scarf and I am starting Gaby and Dominic's Christmas presents. We're ready for winter--or fall at least, our favorite season.

See everyone soon!
Kev and Mal
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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Cherry Hill

Friday afternoon, Kev and I headed to the outskirts of Lassen National Forest for our first camping trip together--and what we assume is Tasha's first campin' trip ever. We drove through the small woodsy town of Butte Meadows to the Cherry Hill Campground.

We were one of the only groups there, so we got a prime spot: the furthest set-back from the road, and closest to the creek. We got to explore a bit with Tasha, build a few campfires, make s'mores, and get away from Chico for a day and night. If it wasn't already late in the season, we would be heading back real soon. Here's some more pictures from our trip..

We have a list going of places we want to visit/camp. It's too bad we'll probably have to wait until next spring :(
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