Shortly after the New Year my Grandmother fell in her apartment. When she called me she said she had fell and broke her wrist. I immediately called 911 and had an ambulance sent to her apartment. When I got there the EMS were already on site and I let them into her place. We stabilized her arm and got her to the emergency room. This is where the fun started.
Normally my parents are the ones who get called, but my dad works for Boeing and he now works in Oklahoma. So this was my first time doing this and I was unprepared. Once we got to the ER they got her in a room and started asking her questions. We went through the normal ones like what how many surgeries have you had, when was the last one and so on. Then they asked her about her medications and after we went through all of those she pointed out that she can’t take a series of pain killers because she has an allergic reaction to them. Then he asked if she drank. She said she likes a glass of wine from time to time. Then he asks if she does any recreational drugs, without missing a beat she said “Yes!” I started to laugh. The nurse looked at her strangely, then she took a moment and processed the question in her head and realized what he really asked.
You see, she thought she heard “Do you recreationally drink?” And she answered accordingly. When she processed the actual question she started back paddling to correct herself. Then we all had a good laugh. It’s good when you can take a moment like a broken wrist and hip and still have a good laugh.
This year is the first year that we brought our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day celebrations under one roof. It used to be we would celebrate Christmas Eve at my parents’ house in Derby and then we would be at my in-laws’ house in Wichita on Christmas Day. However, Brian’s parents sold their house and officially moved to Midwest City, OK last month.
We figured that, since we were going to be hosting Christmas Day at our house anyway, we might as well host Christmas Eve as well. It worked out perfectly also because our nephews celebrate Christmas Eve with their other grandparents (Jennifer Cannady’s parents) who live just around the block from us.
Christmas Eve started quietly enough with Brian showing grandma his new laptop.
Donna made deviled eggs. Yum!
Mom made lumpia, menudo, chicken macaroni salad, and fruit salad. For someone who never cooked when I was growing up, my mom actually makes really delicious food.
Brian made crockpot chicken adobo and chocolate chip cookies.
I made what we call el cheapo (ground beef, peas, and carrots) because it’s easy to make and goes well with steamed white rice.
We had way more food than we could ever eat. We could have invited all of our friends for dinner and still would have had leftovers. Seriously.
We played a few rounds of Catch Phrase after dinner. It was hilarious! The adults also exchanged gifts while we waited for the boys, that way we could focus on the kids when they arrived.
Brian and I got mom and dad a pasta night gift set and Downton Abbey Seasons 1, 2 & 3 since dad mentioned that he really loved that show during Thanksgiving.
We got Jenni $25 to Rue 21 (she loves that store for some reason) and I gave her a bunch of workout clothes (a couple of UnderArmour tanks and a pair of Zumba sweatpants) in hopes that she’ll start working out with me again.
There was nothing implicit about my request either.
After the boys arrived, it was all about them. Here are some photos.
We got the boys matching Superman shirts (because Brian likes Superman most out of all the superheroes) and then Eli and QQ both got PlasmaCars. We gave Logan $50 cash, which is about the same price as the PlasmaCars, just to keep things even.
Mom, dad, and Jenni got Logan a big TV for Christmas. I’m not sure what else the boys got, but they usually do pretty well. Christmas is not about presents, but it’s always fun to watch their eyes light up.
The next morning was all about grandma and my in-laws.
We each got them stockings full of their favorite goodies.
They all got booze and chocolates in their stockings, among other things.
Brian made quite a breakfast!
When Kevin, Kasey, Kyndra, and Andrew arrived, we all headed to the basement to exchange gifts while we waited for lunch to be ready.
We got Andrew a bunch of Thundercats toys, which is what Kevin told us he wanted. For Kyndra we got a little cheerleader bag, a box of Russell Stover chocolates, and a makeup kit. Kasey told us that is what she wanted. I guess she’s of that age now that she’s starting to get into cosmetics.
For Kasey we got a set of Hello Kitty glasses and a Hello Kitty flask because she loves anything Hello Kitty. We got Kevin the Alien Anthology [Blu-ray] box set. We figured he would enjoy it.
I got Donna an Origami Owl living locket necklace also just like the one I got for mom. I got the necklace, locket, mom plate, and two birthstone charms. The funny thing is other than the necklace (which I got in two different styles) the lockets themselves look almost identical because Jenni and Kevin were both born during the month of November so they have the same birthstone and then my birthstone and Brian’s birthstone are pretty much the same color (pink).
For David and Donna to enjoy together, we got a bar set and the same bamboo cutting board with multicolor mats that we have because they mentioned that they liked ours a lot when they were staying with us last month. David got the same Alien Anthology collection we got for Kevin and also the Star Trek: The Next Generation Motion Picture Collection to complete his Star Trek movie collection which we started earlier this year.
It’s not just kids who are fun to watch as they open presents. Adults are equally fun to watch also, specially grandma. We got her a tin of her favorite Christmas cookies from Sam’s Club (which David and Donna got for her also, so she ended up with two tins this year), a sleigh full of Ghirardelli chocolate goodies, a couple of Disney DVD movie collections — the Classics (Gnome-Mobile / Darby O’gill & Little People / One & Only Genuine Family / Happiest Millionaire) and Herbie (Love Bug / Herbie Goes Bananas / Herbie Goes To Monte Carlo / Herbie Rides Again).
After exchanging presents, it was time for lunch. Christmas Day lunch consisted of mac and cheese, Donna’s scalloped potatoes, pork loin, etc. Kevin and Kasey brought some treats too. Again, we had way more food than we could eat. Even after grandma took food home, Brian and still had a ton of leftovers. Our fridge was full for days!
This is our Christmas celebration in a nutshell. The two days were a whirlwind of food and merriment. It was actually kind of a relief when it was all over. LOL. We cleaned the house throughly from top to bottom the day after Christmas and then we take down both Christmas trees today. Slowly but surely Brian and I remove all evidence of the Christmas mayhem that ensued and prepare to welcome the new year ahead.
Following breakfast we took grandma to do her grocery shopping at Dillons.
Grandma said that she knows approximately what her total is each time so all three of us made our bid before check out. Guess who was the closest? We agreed that very day that, among the three of us, I would probably be most qualified for The Price is Right. LOL. Which amazes me because I rarely ever do any grocery shopping. I’m just really good at guessing prices, I guess.
Brian and I took grandma to breakfast at Livingston’s Diner last weekend. It was her first time there. She got the Mickey Mouse breakfast, which she seemed to enjoy.
My favorite thing to get there is their corned beef hash.
There’s not many restaurants or diners here in town that serve it.
Mmmm… Homemade biscuits and gravy.
I didn’t get any pictures of our cinnamon roll because we annihilated it. The cinnamon roll disappeared from our table almost as soon as it arrived. How can you pass up their yummy cinnamon rolls, though? I would eat a dozen of them in one sitting if I could.
We got grandma a cinnamon roll to go also so she could have some at home later that day also. I think she really liked Livingston’s Diner. At least I hope she did. It’s probably one of my most favorite places to eat breakfast here in town.
Brian’s parents who normally host Thanksgiving moved to Oklahoma during the week of Thanksgiving so we ended up hosting Thanksgiving at our house this year. Neither Brian nor I really cook so we went the easy route and ordered our holiday dinner from Fresh Market. It was a good move because the meal was delicious!
We had both ham and turkey, whipped potatoes, gravy, stuffing, corn soufflé, green beans, cranberry relish, and yeast rolls. Chad made scalloped potatoes and deviled eggs. Mom made lumpia. Brian made chocolate cobbler and we didn’t burn them this time. LOL. Everything was really good but the corn soufflé was clearly the star of the show. I’m not much into corn bread, but the corn soufflé was sweet and cake-like. I’m never eating corn bread ever again. Corn soufflé all the way. LOL.
Oh, and Brian’s mom left her buffet servers so after reheating everything in the oven we use the buffet servers to keep them warm. It worked out perfect. I’m thinking we may use these again come Christmas time. Speaking of, time to start planning the menu but, knowing us, we’ll probably just end up going through Fresh Market again.
Jenni celebrated her birthday at John Barleycorn’s last week. It was a subdued birthday party. We just hung out and played some Scrabble. It was the first time I’d ever played Scrabble at a bar before. I don’t generally hang out at bars, but if they offered Scrabble I’d probably visit more frequently. LOL.
Brian’s parents treated us to dinner at Longhorn Steakhouse on Sunday night. It actually should have been the other way around but they insisted.
Brian and I had never been to Longhorn before. This was our first trip. They were off to a rocky start when they asked us to wait to be seated when there were several vacant tables throughout the restaurant. I’m not sure what was going on there.
We had some of their pretzels with the beer infused cheese dip while we waited for our entrees. It was pretty good. What I liked most about them is that they were super salty so I didn’t need to salt them.
I can’t remember what this salad is called. It had apple chips and bacon and a tangy dressing. It was decent, but I don’t think Brian liked it.
I took a picture of the bread because I take pictures of everything, specially if it’s a restaurant that I’ve never tried before.
We should have stopped at the salads. Alas, eating healthy was not meant to be.
Brian and I decided to keep the calories and cost down by sharing an entree.
He had the filet and the baked potato while I had the lobster and shrimp mac and cheese portion of the entree. I had a bite Brian’s steak which I thought was good, but he was unimpressed.
The food was just okay over all. If we’d been there before, I don’t think I would have picked it. It’s just not the kind of restaurant that I would go out of my way to dine at. I do think it’s better than Outback, but I wouldn’t eat at Outback either. LOL.
At least our server Damian was great. He was friendly and attentive. His service elevated our dining experience. If we ever go back, I’m asking for his section.
We had a full day of Brubakers today. First, we had grandma over for brunch. I had a waxing appointment at Beau Monde so I just picked her up from her place on my way home. Brian had our wonderful breakfast spread ready by the time we arrived.
Later that day Brian’s parents stopped by to borrow the pickup truck. We figured they would come back to return the truck so Brian made dinner for us. Donna brought the ingredients for MaMac’s peach cobbler so she could show me how to make it.
It’s actually really easy to make. I’m posting the recipe here for you guys and also so that I won’t ever forget it.
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup self-rising flour
3/4 cup milk
28 oz can of peaches in heavy syrup (drain and reserve the syrup because you’ll need it later)
1 tablespoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons sugar
- Place butter in 9 X 13 pan. Place pan in oven approximately 5-7 minutes so that the butter melts. Remove from oven.
- Mix sugar, flour, and milk. The batter will be lumpy but that’s okay. Pour batter into the buttered pan.
- Spoon peaches over the batter. Pour peach syrup over the peaches and batter. Do not mix or stir.
- Mix sugar and cinnamon, and sprinkle mixture on top.
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes to an hour (or until done). Ovens will vary so remember to check periodically.
Our three adorable nephews — Logan (13), Eli (7), and Q (3) — spent the night with us on Friday night. The original plan was to just have Logan and Eli over and Q was going to stay with mom and dad. However, the three boys are inseparable. We were worried that Q would have a fit if he was separated from his older brothers so mom, dad, and Q spent the night with us on Friday night also.
Brian made a chicken pasta dish for the grown ups and the boys had Pizza Hut.
After dinner and swimming it was movie time. We watched Escape from Planet Earth.
The next morning we had bacon and pancakes and scrambled eggs.
It sprinkled a lithe but that didn’t stop he boys from playing with the boat.
Brian does such a good job with the boys. I’m glad that mom and dad were there, though. I’m not sure that we could have handled all three boys by ourselves. Anyway, I wish we had more time to spend with our nephews. Maybe next time we can talk Matt and Jen into letting them stay longer.
Brian got some awesome panoramic photos at the ball the other night.
Our entire family got a table to ourselves. It worked out great.
We had a great turnout. Tita Tessie said this year had the best attendance ever. Over 350 people attended. For us, I think this is the first time in eight years that our entire family has attended. It was also Jennifer Cannady’s first Filipino ball.
Here are some more of my favorite pictures from the gala.
My goofy husband (above) and our adorable nephews (below).
Mom and dad.
Eli and Brian.
Logan and Jenni.
The three debutantes.
Jenni and mom.
Brian’s barong came off before the evening was over.
Tita Rose and me.
With Tita Tessie and Tita Ellen.
With the two Jennifers. The only one missing was Jen Teves.
I still remember my very first ball. We had just moved to Kansas and I got roped into participating as a debutante. I borrowed one of Victoria’s dresses (one of Tita Lynne’s daughters) so that we wouldn’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to buy a ball gown. Tita Esper, another one of mom’s good friends, was nice enough to volunteer her son Victor as my escort.
The dance floor seemed so huge back then. It’s amazing how things that seem big when you’re young get smaller with age. Kind of like the Big Mac.
Anyway, the dance floor was like a postage stamp on Saturday night. There was barely any room to move. Maybe it’s not just my imagination. Maybe the dance floor really did physically get smaller to allow for more tables because of this year’s record-breaking attendance.
The dancing went on all night. Here’s a picture that Brian took.
Tita Tessie hired The Source. They played lots of contemporary music and did a great job overall. Even when they were on break though, the dancing never stopped. At one point, Brian and I got pushed toward the stage when a line dance broke out. This one woman who I’d never met before (who may or may not have been intoxicated) fell backwards at the edge of the dance floor and grabbed Brian’s jewels. I asked Brian afterwards if that woman copped a feel and we both laughed at the thought. Of all of the places she could grab to steady herself, she decided to grab his crotch. LOL. Brian said she seemed pleasantly surprised rather than startled when it happened. It was more like, “Ooh la la!”
I had forgotten how much fun the balls can be. They used to bore me to tears when I was younger. Now that I’m officially one of the oldsters, I actually enjoy myself more. That could be because I can drink now. That always helps.
Brian and I danced a lot. I’m glad that I brought dancing shoes. I never would have made it halfway through the night if I stayed in my WH|BM heels. By 11 pm we were both danced out and were ready to call it a night. Having both done some drinking, we were grateful to live just around the corner from the Marriott Hotel (yet another unexpected perk of living in the wrong part of town, or so we thought when we originally bought our house; our house is really growing on us though).
Check out my Annual Filipino Ball collection on Flickr for more pictures from the 26th Annual Filipino Ball and previous ones. Enjoy!