Saturday, January 28, 2017


Catching up! December is a busy month.

Happy Birthday Carmine.  Gino was thrilled to finally have birthday party for just him.  Giada has been going to friends birthday parties for years and this guy was excited to join in the action. 
He has such sweet friends at school.

 From one party to the next. What a great day for the kiddos.  Stella and Giada were having tons of fun at Seve's party. How can the big kids be turning 8??
 Adventures with Pops.  Gino was such a good listener and very careful on his adventure on the roof to help get all the leaves off and ready for winter storms. When he was complimented for his good listening he said, "well I didn't want to fall off!" It is nice to know his normal fearless and non-listening behavior has some limits!

 As I mentioned last month we were excited to have our tasting room and retail shop open up.  We had the Chamber come out and do a ribbon cutting. This was a big step and a long time coming for our family and wonderful employees. It takes all of us to get it done. It was such a nice event to share with family, friends, customers, and locals.  We made many dishes to share that featured our products.  It is always nice to show our fans how to be creative in their cooking especially with the flavored oils.

 Annual Mother Daughter Party.  Thank you Sum for hosting this year; such a wonderful tradition. The night flies by with all the chit-chatting from all of us. 
I think we are on our 20th year!

 Love my mom, she's the best and always doing so much to help my brother and I with the kids. Not sure what we would do without her! I had my Nana here when I was little, but my grandma lived in San Diego, so I would only see her a few times a year. I would have loved technology to be able to see her more often. The kids don't realize how fortunate they are to have both grandparents in town.

 Country Girls!
And then we look over and the moms are taking a selfie. Best pic of the night. 
 Val, thank you for showing them how it's done.
Cookie painting party at Ginger Bugs. 
Shhh don't tell Giada the fun things we do when she is still in school!

 This guy really enjoys reading these days, he brings you book after book. He says, "sit sit" and pats the spot he wants you to join him.
 Trouble.  Gino is teaching him how to be up to no good. Right after this cute picture of them playing, they dumped out the 1 million little pieces of stuffing inside this box.
 "But mom I am NOT tired" he just yelled at me before falling asleep on the stairs 2 seconds later.
 Kanter Family visits from Canada.  The kids loved catching up over pizza and ice cream.
 Stella and Reese are getting in on the Ginger Bugs fun.  What I love most about this place is that every time we are there, the kids do something different. 

Gingerbread Party success!

 Christmas Pageant at St. Anne's 
Always a beautiful tradition.  Gino was singing with his class this year and Giada had a solo. She practiced for weeks and sang beautifully. I wasn't sure if she would get nervous once the church was filled with people, but that didn't seem to be an issue.  After the event she was just bummed to learn she can't be the soloist again for a few years.  This girl loves to sing.  Gino on the other hand turned down the option to have a costume part in the pageant, fell asleep waiting for his class to go on stage, and yawned and nose picked through his class song. :-)  It's good to have room for improvement - right?


 Oakdale Christmas Train
The kids enjoyed hot chocolate, coloring, stories being read to them and Santa! Before the train, we headed to Dust Bowl Brewery. If you haven't been there yet, make the time to go. Delicious food and beer, and not to mention a great outdoor with games and tons of room for the kids to play. Makes this experience enjoyable for the kids and adults! 

1st Annual Christmas Caroling was so much fun. People were definitely surprised to see us when they opened the door, and our 3 song mix needs some refreshing next year, but it was a great start!

Bonus when your buddy gets to come over on a school night!

Finally it is the week of Christmas, let the matching pajamas begin!

 Peek a Boo!
 Cookie day with my favorite bakers.

 Christmas Eve with the Fuhrman Family.

Anyone who knows these guys can understand the challenge of getting all 3 of them to stand still and stop talking to smile for the picture. After many attempts, this was the best! And by challenging, I am not referring to Cliff!

 This year we tried for a group shot.
  Next year Mike and Brian cannot sneak out to be the photographers!
 Brian was teaching Lorenzo the best angle is from the top of the coffee table!

Christmas Morning is so magical with littles! Of course it was the one morning they all slept in, which seems like a gift to us, except we were awake and excited for them to get up! Earlier this month the tree took a big tumble and woke us up in the night to the sound of shattered ornaments.  We were so lucky it didn't fall with people or animals by it and only a few ornaments lost.  We love collecting ornaments and have so many sentimental ones, we were fortunate to only loose a few.

Sweet morning snuggles to finish off this holiday post!