Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas Up North

After four years, we were able to drive home for Xmas again. Our first stop was at my family's, with sweet little Maddy greeting us sleepily.

I found Maddy in a shed as a tiny kitten, all alone and with a bad cold and then my dog-loving family adopted our first cat ever. This was back when I was in high school and she's been with us for about 19 years. She looks a lot like Stinky but she's much daintier and smaller than he. Maddy stayed in front of the fireplace even when we had a rousing gift opening session.

It was such funny to see our niece enjoying the gift opening and to see her helping her little brother. The next day, there were more festivities with the extended side of my family coming to brunch. My grandma looked great for being days shy of 96 years old and, with several little ones in attendance, there were four generations represented. After dinner on Xmas Eve, we were off to Minneapolis to visit with Austin's family.

The stocking my grandma knit for me way back when now lives at my inlaws' and came out on Xmas morning. We opened stockings and gifts, went to a family event, and relaxed at home that evening. Austin and I were off late the next morning, bringing lunch to my aunt and uncle and then running a few errands which involved getting to see a friend. Then we hit the road and went back to IL, happy and sated.

Friday, December 21, 2012

All wrapped up

Lots of stuff.

End of the Semester Dinner Party

My very first semester as a "real" professor is over. Clearly it kept me from blogging more regularly but some of my busy-ness was spent teaching one of my best classes ever--teaching methods for grad students. I had them over at the end of the semester to cook dinner with me. As if we'd be wanting for food, Austin and I set out some appetizers including boursin-roasted pepper crostinis, smoked salmon with cream cheese and bagel chips, and artichoke spread and baguettes.

Then the cooking began.

We enjoyed fried spring rolls, Malaysian noodles, Italian flatbread pizza, a halal chicken dish, and more.

For dessert, there were crêpes and nutella and 18 year aged balsamic on vanilla ice cream. What a fantastic class and group of students.