Thursday, December 31, 2009


I figured the best way to end the decade was with some pictures of its beginning. (Please don't laugh at my pantyhose...pretty sure that was the last time I've had a pair on my body.) This will be the 10th New Year's Eve Jason and I have spent together. (Which is actually quite amazing considering the number of holidays we've spent apart.) So yes, that's us celebrating Y2K. (I remember one of the girls I worked with had stocked up on so many bottles of water awaiting "the crash" that she brought us each a case. Needless to say, I was well hydrated as the 2000's began.)
I could have never guessed what the 2000's had in store for us. (If someone had told me I'm pretty sure that smile would have been more a look of sheer terror!) What an amazing 10 years we have been blessed with. And I won't even try to imagine what the next 10 has in store for us...Here's to you, 2010!

Glad to see my love of a good party hat hasn't changed. I noticed I'm wearing a different one in each picture. Guess I upgraded for a sparklier model as the night went on!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I'm actually a little nervous about this post. I'm quite certain I'll have my Durango Card* taken away from me over this, so I might have to hide out for a few days.
Hunter came to me as a puppy to be my "beautiful show Bichon". He kept that title until JR was born, and since the little guys came along, Hunter's beautifulness has not been high on the list. In fact, I think it might have slid right off the list. (Which is completely unDurangoan of me.) As you can see, "bad perm" doesn't even begin to describe his look as of late. But I think I'll be back in the good graces of the Durango Dog Police after they see Mr. Hunter now. Hunter, you better keep your eyes open wide so we can find you in the snow. Now that's what I call a make-over, my Beautiful Show Bichon!

* A Durango Card is a fictional document Jason and I have invented when talking about this town and specifically its love of dogs, nature, and bicycling.
For Example: When seeing someone had hit a bicycler with his car (nobody was hurt) we said, "Ohh! Bet they get their Durango Card taken away!"

Monday, December 28, 2009

I'm the Poet. And Yep, I Know it!

Twas the days before Christmas, and all through the town
not an Ingy was resting, too busy jumping up and down.
The skis were swooshing down the mountain with care,
much easier than snowboarding since they're a pair.

JR was nestled all snug in his coat,
as his snowmobile glided just like a boat.
With Jason at the wheel, he finally gave in
and let JR drive, now that's a big grin!

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
It was each one of the grandparents. Whew! That's a lot of chatter!
We loaded the car and headed on out.
It was -1 so we bustled about.

Waiting at the train station for our next ride,
The Polar Express we took mountain side.
When what to our wondering eyes should appear?
The North Pole! It was there, we could see it so clear.

He wore a big white beard and a bright red suit,
and then I saw those shiny black boots.
Of course, since this is Durango, he was also quite trim.
Could there be any doubt? It's Santa! I know him!

There were plenty of presents, lots of things to unwrap.
And so much food I really need to go run a few laps.
The kids were excited, in total Christmas bliss.
In fact, the whole time they just looked like this:

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Nor-way, Jose!

I've written many times about my mom being a German-Jew-Presbyterian. My dad has always said 'Reynolds' is Irish, but I just think of us as being "Native Texan". So by my calculations that makes me a big ol' Irish-Texan-German-Jew-Presbyterian that's actually a Baptist-mutt. Which is why I always find it exciting that my kids are 25% Norwegian, thanks to Granny Sherry's 100 percentness. So last night we had a traditional Norwegian dinner. Actually, Sherry said we should be eating lutefisk for a real Norwegian Christmas dinner, but even Sherry isn't interested in eating fish soaked in lye. Instead, we ate homemade Swedish meatballs. And as you can see, Reed was a big fan of the meatballs. I guess he figured he better really enjoy the food since he hit the Norway genes jackpot as he inherited the bluest eyes and the blondest hair of the bunch.
I was most excited about having lefse for dessert. Now I'm sure the Rochester Cousins have lefse once a week, but it's actually a real treat for us since Sherry had to order it from Minnesota (the only place in the entire country you can get it).
All you other non-Norwegians must be wondering...what in the world is lefse? Well, the best way to explain it: it's like a really, really thin tortilla and you eat it with soft butter (apparently, the butter being soft is super important) and brown sugar. You can see the 50% Norwegian preparing his lefse here. (Soft butter in the bottom right hand corner.) Of course, this nonNorwegian- German-Jew-Baptist-Irish-Texan is happy to eat lefse whether the butter is hard or soft. I mean, can you really go wrong with any kind of butter...and brown sugar? I'm thinkin' not!

Norwegians eating meatballs.

Norwegians eating lefse.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Rule of Life #63

When making a day trip to Telluride, make sure you have a change of clothes in the diaper bag. It's fun to go see how the rich and famous live, but not so fun to shop where they shop. I was hoping Kyle would run into Suri Cruise this afternoon so they could chat about his new $35 pajamas (as seen here).
I can absolutely guarantee you I will never (as in never, ever, ever) venture over to Telluride without a few spare outfits in toe.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wrap It Up....Please!

I will not let you defeat me. I will not let you bring me down on this Christmas Eve. Instead, pesky Wrapping Paper, I am choosing to celebrate. Celebrate that I am the worst present wrapper in the entire world. Yes! I am the champion; the gold medalist. Release the doves, because I have taken my stance on the podium. With tears streaming down my face, I raise my bouquet of flowers in the air as the last notes of The Star-Spangled Banner swell. I win. Worst present wrapper. Ever.
I truly believe I might have some sort of depth perception problem. I always cut the paper just a little too short, or have enough left over to make myself a cute paper trench coat. I try my hardest to make the paper look smooth and pretty, I really do. But, as you can see, it always bunches up and looks puffy...even on easy small square presents. It's so bad, in fact, that my mom even says it's bad. And you know it's really bad when the mother of an only-child-daughter says so.
But this year I've had a revelation. It tells us in Luke that Jesus was wrapped in swaddling clothes. And though swaddling clothes sound really sweet and pretty, let's be honest, poor Mary was wrapping her new born Baby in whatever strips of cloth she could find. And if the Best Christmas Present ever was wrapped in a patchwork of torn cloth, then I'm pretty sure my wrappings this year will only remind us of Who we celebrate this Christmas Eve. That's right, I didn't just give up and start taping strips of wrapping paper to this box. Spiderman and Yo Gabba Gabba are coming together in a mishmash of messiness to point us straight to The Manger.

Merry Christmas!
Luke 2:11: For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hats in the Belfry

(Sorry about the terrible picture quality.) So guess what the little guys have come up with as their new favorite entertainment? It's none other than the thrilling world of.....dishtowels. Oh yes, dishtowels. They play Slaps for awhile, (as in slap each other with the towel and fall over laughing) then move on to the Project Runway portion of the day by bringing me the towels to fashion into hats. As a nod to the Christmas season, this was my attempt at a wise man and shepherd. I thought I did a pretty good job on Reed's turban, but after seeing them on film, they both pretty much just look like Aunt Jemima.

Monday, December 21, 2009

One's Down!

We were getting ready to go to a Christmas party Saturday night when I realized I hadn't seen the babies in the last 5 seconds. About that time Reed (master of everyone's business) ran in to tattle on his brother. Reed thinks he's carrying on a full conversation with me, but when I heard the "Uh-oh" and "Oh no!" part of his story, I knew I needed to investigate. It didn't take me long to find Kyle placing Christmas "ornaments" in his bed. And with the tree now on the floor, it made his ornament picking that much easier. (I put 'ornaments' in quotes, because in Kyle's defense, the ornaments on their tree are actual toys.) But not only did I find half the ornaments in Kyle's bed, but seems he also decided he was going to sleep with the top of the tree. Kyle just looked at me and said, "Oh No!" It was if he was saying, "I was just standing here, and the tree came falling down, and then these ornaments and the top of the tree just jumped in my bed. And Oh No! How will we ever go on when such a horrible thing has happened and I had nothing to do with it?"

But hey, I think we're doing great. 8 trees and only 1 down!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A First For Us

Yesterday was the first day JR has gotten to ski with us. (It was also my first day sporting my new super cute pink helmet and goggles.)

JR did great getting on and off the lifts. He did have a ski ripped off his foot on the same lift I had mine ripped off last year (and the same one we saw the lady fall from).

And if sporting some serious after-ski-helmet hair is any indication of your ski day, I'd say it was quite successful.

Friday, December 18, 2009

It Happens in Threes

Today was the day. The excitement trifecta:

Pajama day.
Party day.
Play date.

The Perfect Storm of activities which all converged this December 18th and jolted JR out of bed at 6:00 AM. It was almost too much for his little 6 year old heart to endure. But endure we did. And when I say "we", I most obviously mean "me", as JR was much too busy swinging from the rafters to notice The Storm he was riding out.

So let's start at the beginning.

Pajama Day.
And just to kick it up a notch...Star Wars pajamas.

School Christmas party.
Like Hugh Hefner, Kyle and Reed also enjoy lounging in pajamas all day, so it was an easy wardrobe choice for them on PJ day. As you can see, I didn't have any problems keeping them occupied while the kids were at the all school sing-a-long.

But when the party started it was a completely different story. Of course they were both insistent on sitting in JR's chair. And since JR isn't a little girl, he was having none of that. I finally satisfied everbody by pulling up 2 extra chairs.

And to complete the excitement trifecta: Play date.
It'd been a long day, so I took the liberty of taking the kids to Happy Hour. Now don't get all up-in-arms, I bought the first round! Sure I had 5 kids in the car, but nothing tates as good as a Sonic slushy after a hard day.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

JR Is Furious He Wasn't There

Disclaimer: This is a Jason post, which means it includes a hunting story and pictures. So if that isn't your cup o' tea, make sure and check back in tomorrow.

So Monday started off just like any other day, until I got an afternoon call from Jason telling me he might be "a little late" getting home since he was heading hunt a mountain lion. Now seriously, how was I even supposed to respond to that? He explained that some "big mountain lion tracks" had been spotted on one of the nearby Apache Jicarilla Reservations and that he was going after it with a guide. (You have to have a tribe member with you on The Res.) Great. I called him a couple hours later just to see if he was planning on coming home anytime soon, and yippee for me, I learned that I am now the new "proud" owner of a 7 foot 8 inch, 202 pound mountain lion. He thinks he's going to make a full mount of this thing. (And here I was thinking I was going to be a beyond fabulous wife tolerating a rug.) Negotiations to be continued, but in the meantime, here are some pictures.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Seriously, When is my 'Mom of the Year' Trophy Arriving?

Yet again, my amazing mothering techniques were on display for all to see today. It's Wednesday, so you know what that means. Yep, Tiny Tots day. The Sliding Mat of Danger was back again, but the teacher had it turned on its side, so it wasn't near as tall as it has been in the past. In fact, the mat was so short, I could reach about 3/4 the way up. (Are you impressed with my use of a fraction? I am.) So Kyle was first to climb The Mat of Danger, and since I was able to reach farther, I was giving him a little help. Problem was, I helped him a little too much. As he neared the top, I gave him a little extra boost, which sent him up and over the top of the mat and pinned him between the wall and the back of the mat.
And what did I do? Did I scale the mat myself to rescue my child? Try to run behind it in case he dropped to the ground?
Um, No.
Rather than actually trying to save my child, I choose to use the Jan Approach to critical situations: I screamed out.
"Oh no! I've lost him!"
Of course Kyle was busy putting on a dramatic showcase all his own. As the teacher climbed up behind the mat to rescue him, I just knew I had traumatized my child for life. But, surprisingly, the little dramatist shook it off and went right back to Danger Mat climbing. I couldn't believe it! In the end, the day turned out just like Kyle and I like it...crisis averted and hoopla aplenty.
(And by the way, my "helping" was much more minimal for the rest of class.)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Lip Service

Just add this to the list of things I never thought I'd say.
It was right before bedtime when I found myself chasing Kyle around the house screaming, "Get Baby Jesus out of your mouth!" "Kyle! Stop! You can't eat Baby Jesus!" I guess JR's Christmas play didn't have much of an impact. Poor Baby Jesus. He was almost eaten by a hippopotamus, He's been thrown down the stairs more times than I can count, and last night He was a stand-in for Kyle's pacifier. I'd say that's a Savior you can count on!

Monday, December 14, 2009

It's Play Time

This is my 300th post of the year, Yeah me! My goal was to have 300 blog posts this year, but don't worry, I won't quit on you now that I'm there. You know me, so goal and task oriented. (Is that laughter I hear out there?) I'm telling ya, being married to Jason for 8 years has really rubbed off on me. I was telling him the other day about a situation and the words, "and it's just so frustrating because it's so disorganized, and you know me, I really like having a plan" actually came out of my mouth. I started laughing as soon as I heard myself say it. I'm still the master of the multi-task, but my ability to make plans, to-do lists, and write things down has increased tremendously around all these A-type Ingersolls I live with. And what is the subject of my 300th post you ask? Oh just a few of my favorite things: JR, Kyle, Reed, and a Christmas play.
Isn't this the sweetest picture ever?! I know, I know I'm the mom that was taking pictures during the prayer instead of praying. But come on, how could I miss out on that little snapshot? So the Christmas play at church was really sweet. JR was very upset that Kyle and Reed were going to attend. He kept saying, "But they'll be bad, they'll make too much noise." Thankfully, they did a great job. They clapped and danced along with most of the performance (it helped that there were lots of songs), and if they even looked like they were thinking about "being bad" Jason and I handed them a cookie. Yes, our parenting skills are really quite amazing. Here they are dancing along. I'm not sure they realized they weren't actually in the play.

Here are some shots from the evening, and then a video with JR saying his big line. He was so excited to get "a part" and practiced and practiced. I kept telling him he got the best line in the whole play..."Jesus makes Christmas!"

Sunday, December 13, 2009

It Was a Party!

I know I've gone 2 days without updating, but I've been in fast and furious baking and cleaning-up mode. I was getting pretty nervous that I would be the one eating all these baked goods when it started snowing yesterday. But with 44 people coming by last night, I'd say our open house was a huge success. Jason's Texas chili (7 pounds of meat worth) was a big hit with the Coloradoans, and my baked goods seemed to go over well with our younger guests. And you know it was a fun party if we were too busy to take pictures! Harry took this one of Jason and me before the party started, and it's the only one we took all night. Although, I did snap some pictures of the tables right before the guests arrived.

Sausage, craker, and cheese platters also a huge hit. Leftovers = none!

Baked goods area

Candy cane kiss brownie bites...super yummy

Beverage center (And yes, that's that the super yummy slightly famous coffee punch in the punch bowl.)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I Told You So!

I told you the next thing you knew I was going to be making food posts! Our Christmas Open House is this Saturday night (If you live in Durango please swing by) and I started baking for the party last night. You might be thinking, "Jan, Did you say 'baking'? But you aren't a cook." No, a "cook" I am not. But I'm a decent baker since there's no guess work, it's all right there on the recipe. As my aunt, Pam-Pam, (who was an amazing cook) used to say, "If you can read, you can cook." I'm not so sure about that for actual cooking, but baking...absolutely. So last night was tea cake night. Tea cakes are one of the messiest, labor intensive, pain-in-the-hiney cookies you can make, but I remember making them at Christmas with my parents when I was little, so I guess that's why I want to do it every year. That, and JR must have said, "This is so much fun" at least a dozen times. Now this particular tea cake recipe was Memaw's (my mom's mom), and is so old it doesn't even have a baking temperature written on the recipe card since she made them in a wood-burning stove. (Which would have to significantly increase the pain-in-the-hineyness factor of these cookies. It's a wonder they ever got made.)

I started out trying to take pictures just like a real food blog, but that got blown out the window after the first shot.

Standard food blog shot: the ingredients (except half of them aren't even in the picture, and JR is...obviously you see where my priorities are.)

And then we'll just skip a whole bunch of steps of measuring, pouring, and mixing and we'll jump right into the rolling and cutting out.

I have to say, Harry was an amazing cookie maker last night. I'm now convinced rolling dough (for dumplings) is an inherited Chinese trait. I kept telling Harry, "Wow, This is obviously in your genes." You'll notice Harry is using Ayi's Chinese rolling pin. You'll also notice by a shot of Reed's foot that I had Reed and Kyle plopped right up on the island. Great, now I'm going to have the Board of Health after me too.

We finally had to give Reed, master of getting in everybody's business, his own dough to "play" with. Although in his mind there wasn't any playing going on...just lots of Top Chefing.

Look at the concentration on that face, making sure his cookie-cutter is in just the right place. And in classic Kyle and Reed fashion, you'll notice Kyle in the background. He was playing with the sink.

Woo-Hoo! Perfect cookie!

So after the rolling, cutting, and decorating (green sprinkles were the choice last night) the cookies go in a 350 degree oven (but I always have to call and ask my dad to make sure since, like I said, it isn't on the recipe).
And I know I'm supposed to have a picture of the finished product. Yeah, oops...forgot that. But all the boys were really busy eating the practice cookies (our first batch) for dessert last night, and said they were delicious. Plus, the first thing out of Reed's mouth this morning was "Cookie! Cookie!" All of which point to a total success in tea cake making.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I'm So Well Rested!

Such a wonderful morning I had! School was delayed for 2 hours and I made the executive decision not to tell JR before he went to bed last night. (If he had known, he would have been up at 6:00. Telling JR he gets to sleep in is a sure fire way to have him awake 5:58.) Thinking it was a normal school day, I heard the elephant thudding, I mean, pitter-patter of JR's feet at 7:42. 7:42...Ahhh. Sleeping in was beyond fabulous! The babies and I headed out to Tiny Tots and we were the only ones there. How come the native Texan was the only one at The Tots?! What's up with that, Coloradoans? Well, maybe it had to do with people's cars around town still looking like this. (And please forgive my poor picture taking skills...these were shots taken as I drove by.)

And before we go, let's check in with the Ingy Kitchen Counter Weather Station. Shall we have a little look-see?
Yep, that's what negative 2 looks like, Texas.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Yard Art Doesn't Really Work Here

We Texans thought we had gotten a lot of snow yesterday. Here's Jason using his brand new snow blower. You might recall when we were moving here Jason was told we needed a snow blower. His reply, "I have a leaf blower. Will that work?" We have learned that indeed, no, a leaf blower would never work.
What a difference a night makes. Here's Jason snow blowing about 7:30 this morning.

Jason had a little trouble trying to get to the office this morning.

It snowed so much, Durango cancelled school! (That very rarely happens.)

JR sledding with our across the street neighbors in their front yard.

More front yard sledding

I learned another good lesson last night. It's fine to decorate the front porch for Christmas.

But I now see why I was the only one with yard art.