Por Que No? for Alyssa’s birthday dinner! (don’t worry, the selfie stick obsession wares off soon… haha)
New Years Eve dinner at Pizza Smith! We spent the rest of the night playing games at a friend’s house and were in bed just before midnight. #signsofaging
Kelsey made the most delicious carnitas tacos for her birthday dinner. I was sad she had to cook on her birthday but happy that she made the carnitas because we would have messed it up for sure! She got the recipe from THIS cookbook.While our husbands were out of town on the Precoa recruiting trip we tried a new restaurant downtown. This place is called The American Local and I highly recommend it! (not pictured: the best brussel sprouts I’ve ever had, mismatched silverware and tiny water glasses.)
This clearly is not a restaurant but I have no where else to include this gem. I made everyone take a selfie stick photo during the first marketing department meeting of the year because, why not?
The annual Christmas Eve marshmallow war has to be its own post because there are too many pictures to include it anywhere else. The large glasses are for protection.
Jane is a smart little 16-month-old. She wanted to play with everyone so she watched what we did and successfully copied it. However, she put more spit in the pipe than air so the marshmallows didn’t go very far. At that point she realized that she could just eat the mallows and put handfuls in her mouth. Below is Cami trying to get Jane to open her mouthful of mallows : ) Haha! This was really entertaining. Jane was so convinced she was hiding the mallows well but we all knew where they were.
Joe may spit a lot when he shoots but he has great aim.
We had the brilliant idea to take the scenic Highway 101 down the Oregon coast to get home for Christmas instead of taking the shorter I-5 route. We even planned out all of the light houses and various attractions we were going to explore on the drive. It wasn’t raining in Portland when we left but by the time we got to the coast we were in a torrential downpour. The rain was puddling on the windshield because even in hyper speed the wipers couldn’t move the rain fast enough for us to get a clear view. We stopped at the first light house on the list, couldn’t see it and decided that our scenic drive could wait for the trip back to Portland.
Our first stop at home was our favorite restaurant. Sky Sushi!
Christmas Eve wouldn’t be complete without Mom putting on the Nativity with the little kids. It ended with the little girls playing Christmas songs on the piano but my phone ran out of memory!
Lucas and I received an unexpected but very exciting gift from his aunt Molly. Once we unwrapped the selfie stick it was basically glued to my hand for the rest of our trip. You’ll see the proof below : )
This gourmet breakfast reunion with high school/middle school friends was the best. So fun to catch up with these guys!On our last day in town we got crepes in El Dorado Hills and saw Into the Woods with Mom and Cami. Lunch may have just been a good excuse to use the selfie stick. I don’t remember : )
Just in case there weren’t enough parties in December already we decided to have an ugly sweater/hot chocolate extravaganza at work.
Ashley won the ugly sweater contest with her Christmas tree!!
Hot chocolate bar and festive Krispy Kremes!
I love the holiday season everywhere and I especially love the opportunity to experience each city’s holiday traditions. Here are a handful of activities we did during December in Lake Oswego/Portland.
During the first week of December we stopped by Walmart late one night to pick up some last minute groceries and there was a Christmas Coco-Cola semi parked in front of the store. There was no line for a free picture with Santa so we had to get one : ) Although it was strange meeting a Santa who is probably our same age… or close.
Home Depot, one of my favorite stores, hold free workshops every month or so and the December craft was a light up board! By the time we took this picture a lot of participants had left, but in the beginning there were at least 40 women! We learned after that the holiday workshop is always the most packed. Either way it was a ton of fun and I highly recommend going to one! Check out upcoming workshops.
During the summer Lake Oswego hosts a farmer’s market every Saturday and in December they pick one Saturday to have a reunion market. During the summer I like to go for the people watching and fresh flowers but we went in December for the carriage ride. Since the carriage took us on a backroad route around downtown LO we were able to see some charming areas we hadn’t seen before. And we stumbled upon some interesting art pieces. You’ll see one below.
The Pioneer Square in downtown Portland holds a massive Christmas tree every year. This time the tree was just over 75 feet tall!!
Although I LOVE parties, I don’t enjoy parties that are about me. I prefer to be the host over the center of attention. Luckily my birthday can be blended with Christmas so I can have a birthday/ugly sweater/holiday party : )
As life during the holiday season is often crazy, Lucas and I were running late to get home after work, the power went out on the freeway offramp stop lights so traffic made the return commute 40 minutes instead of 8 minutes, so by the time we got home our friends were arriving and I forgot to put on my ugly sweater. Even though, it was such a fun night. There is something wonderful about having a small apartment filled with happy people you love that makes everything better.
I have the pleasure of working with Shalece and she is amazing! I’m so grateful for her!
Kelsey surprised me at work with this beautiful gold tumbler with with my favorite tea from Starbucks. Best birthday present! Also, she brought yummy sugar cookies for everyone to frost : )
Ally made this delicious pumpkin chocolate chip bread shaped like a cake with cream cheese frosting. So yummy! Thank you Ally!!
Evan frosted the best looking Santa cookie so we had to document it.
We used the extra Martinelli’s from our work party : )
**This is my attempt at catching up 6 months of activities so I have to start where I left off, Christmas!**
We got our first Christmas tree this year! One of our co-workers’ family owns a u-cut Christmas tree farm so we picked out and cut our tree! And by ‘we’ I mean Lucas did all the work. Just trying to give credit where credit is due : )
Purchasing a tree was a last minute decision so we had to run to the store to get a tree stand and lights on the way home. We bought one box with a 300 light strand in it. I thought it wouldn’t be enough but Lucas swore it would be plenty so we bet on it. If we needed more lights to cover the tree then I got to buy a super soft throw blanket from Costco that I’d had my eye on for a while. Lucas never decided what his reward would be for winning the bet, but it didn’t matter because while decorating the tree we quickly realized who won! Yahoo for soft blankets!
Our first Christmas tree! Complete with a handmade gold star! (Lucas made the star out of a cereal box and gold spray paint and did a great job! Except it made for a great spider house. Gross! )
The first party I can remember planning was a surprise 11th birthday party for my best friend Hannah and her twin Myles. I’ve always loved coordinating events and wish I would have gotten a jump start on doing them professionally sooner than now but I am grateful that I finally have my dream job : ) Since working as an event coordinator at Precoa I’ve been able to help plan a handful of company events (including a Halloween runway show!) but this holiday party is the best and biggest to date! There are a lot of details to plan and implement for a formal event with 216 people but I loved every second of the process!
We decided to embrace the Northwest as our theme and created a glamorous Christmas tree lot! Inside this tent we had 35 real, locally grown trees and each tree went home with an employee to be in a loving home for the rest of the holiday season.
This Costco run was a workout. 110 Martinelli bottles later I couldn’t leave the store without photo evidence of the hard work.
It took a large uHaul and these fine gentlemen to get our 35 trees with stands and 20 light posts into the truck, out of the truck and set up in our venue. Thank you!!
Next to each place setting we set a gourmet carmel, chocolate and cinnamon sugar pretzel rod. These desserts are delicious but take a while to make when you need 216 of them : ) We hand made them all.
Lucas and I made this arrow sign and the photo backdrop below. We’re addicted to DIY projects.
While planning for this event I learned how to use SketchUp, a software that allows you to lay out an event or building in 3D. I’m excited to use this for future events!
On our way downtown to take Christmas card pictures on a bridge we accidentally found this railroad track surrounded by the last of the fall colored leaves. So we pulled over into something I’m sure was an illegal parking spot and snapped some pictures!
Our final card is at the bottom : )
The Hawthorne Bridge
Of course we had to go to lunch after so we chose Podnah’s.
It’s one of the best BBQ restaurants in Portland : )
Happy Thanksgiving from Geri, Bill, Martha, Dillon, Alyssa, Jill, Lucas, Melanie, Kyle, Payton, Jack, Toby and Melky!
Martha and I made apple pies and Lucas helped me make the pumpkin pies : )
Pumpkins, paper flowers and leaves/pinecones from outside as our decor around the apartment Bill and Martha rented downtown.
Martha made these tree stump plate stands!