Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Chinese New Year 2015 - Continued - Official Family Photo

Here's our official Chinese New Year Photo - 2015 (not our best one!! Wish I had looked closer when he showed it to me; usually they are very good mementos of the event). A small group for us this year. The "growns" had something else to do but we did get Kilee to spend the night to have some fun with Alyzabeth along with cousin Carolyn!

AA looks so tall; she is standing on a stool, Kilee on the ground. 
At the Jacksonville Garden Club, a great place and since the weather was fine, we were able to spread outside too!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Chinese New Year Celebration - FCFCC

Kilee and Alyzabeth enjoyed the Chinese New Year celebration at the Garden Club of Jacksonville. The weather turned out just gorgeous, low-70's. Perfect considering we just came out of three freezing days! Before photos:

Carolyn took them around the room, selecting which raffles to put their tickets in - Ford bought an obscene amount for us to ensure the odds will be in our favor of winning something! The food was great with dumplings, Asian cold salad, steak, chicken, macaroni and cheese, rice and sweet potatoes - all good! Also, a drinks table for the kids to self-serve (and a bar for us adults!).
Year of the Sheep crafts:
Kilee's favorite raffle item and she won it! She was so happy - a sunflower star-burst made from book pages, sprayed with gold paint (made by Rina Speciale).
We all won something, a wine basket, a Chinese basket (cloisonne candle stick holders, picture frame and purple jade/pearl earrings), plus a golf certificate for four at Cimarrone! Carolyn won a red, white and blue bracelet (she knows who will love it too).
We donated a hand-made cherry blossom dress (made by J. Raff - Fly Away Home) for the raffle too; hope some little girl loves it!
The sleeping lion, everyone had to help wake it up!
Kilee pleased she got so close to the lion this year!
Close enough to touch:
Kilee holding AA's hand - so cute!
A great event! Thank you to the FCFCC Board and Volunteers!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Kilee's Visit - Sleep Over - Saturday - Sunday

Kilee spent the night with us and is going to Chinese New Year celebration later this afternoon. It was so cold last week, today was beautiful! This morning was about 50 degrees, but quickly warmed up! 
Kilee fixed AA's hair, they ate an apple for snack, ran around playing tag and spy; a game of Life and other iPad games. Too bad we turned on AA's Wii game and the power pack didn't work - will head back to the store to see what's up!
Kilee has a full mouth of apple - trying not to chew:

Happy girl (yesterday's golf tournament was such a disappointment to her; tears and sadness - but the next day - today, life looks good again!)
Sunshine blinding them:
Running around the Club:
Love the spring weather!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

First Golf Tournament with Challenges!

With a very irregular past week and so far out of her usual routine, we saw the impact at the tournament at King's Ridge (02/21/2015). She began strong on the first two holes then on the third hole had some extra strokes; she was so sad/disappointed that she began to cry (scored a "7"). She did come back and birdie one hole but on the ninth hole, she again ran into trouble in a bunker, very unusual for her. She had an easy chip/sand-wedge shot over a bunker but somehow plunked it into the bunker, then many extra strokes to finally get a "9" on that last hole. Even though everyone was letting her know that a few bad holes sometimes happens, she was just inconsolable.
From FGA - Facebook:
A special shout goes out to Alyzabeth Morgan today who struggled on a few holes today but still managed a top 5 finish at the US Kids Orlando Tour event at King's Ridge GC. So impressed with the way you hit your new driver today and I can't tell you how proud we are that you fought the whole way around and came back with pars and a birdie. You showed a lot of heart today and that is a sign of a true champion. FGA is one of your biggest fans.

Of course as parents, we have discussed with her about how she needs to show her sadness about losing a game without tears. She doesn't cry when she comes in second or third place. She also needs to be happy for the girls who do well. Learning and growing up at times is hard.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Week of February 16th - It's Been Different!

The week began with President's Day holiday and sweet Hubby scheduled for a minor surgical procedure; nothing serious, making a "repair"! We thought he would be up and moving after 24 hours, but not so. Cousin Carolyn spent Sunday night so that we could be off to the surgery center before 6:00 a.m.; she had all morning with AA, breakfast and fun!  Then she took AA out for an adventure and lunch at Panda Express. 
I took AA to school and picked her up (Tues/Wed/Thurs/Fri) as Daddy was not walking as well yet. It rained CATS and DOGS on Tuesday and then Wednesday through Friday was/is FRIGID! In the 20's!! AA won't have any practice before this Saturday's Tournament!
I did take her for some putting, but the wind was stopping her ball on the slower putts! Too cold for me!

I wasn't a well trained Caddy, so AA had to put away her own equipment!
A quick stop to the park, since AA begged and said SHE was not cold! We played for about 15 minutes, then headed home!
I took advantage of my off days and ran errands, did the Teacher's Thankful Thursday, CNY bags for AA's class, cooked dinners, shopped and caught up on laundry - so nice! 
Next is the Orlando golf tournament on Saturday (Spring 2015) and Chinese New Year celebration on Sunday.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Year of the Sheep! Happy {Chinese} Lunar New Year Eve!

禧发财 Gong Xi Fa Cai
Chinese New Year has arrived again! We will again celebrate with our local First Coast FCC group on February 22, 2015.

We enjoy handing out red envelopes. eating Chinese food with chop sticks and chasing the Lion dancers around the room!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day!

To start our Valentine's Weekend, Friday night, AA went to the OPUMC Parent's Night Out (PNO) while we had a cocktail hour with friends Kenny and Pam. We made a new recipe of Asian meatballs (recipe below) which were delicious along with chicken salad sliders (purchased the chicken salad with cranberry, celery and pecans and added diced fresh oranges), gourmet olives, hummus and fresh veggies plus skewers of fresh fruit - pineapple and strawberries. We enjoy our time with friends and hope to do small "cocktail" socials in the future at our new little home.

AA received her share of Valentine's Day candy from school mates, especially a large one from friend Samuel J. - lots of candy, a candy heart and other treats!
My gift to Ford was purchased hand made red rope coasters; AA and Daddy crafted two travel coffee mugs for me by dipping in finger nail polish and water - very nice! (you may notice that AA has a bruise over her top lip, a result of a trip and fall accident at PNO - she got road-rash on her face, hand and knees; but not a major injury).
We are slowly emptying our storage units, here is my Nana Davis Redmond's lady's desk. We have it in our sun-room and will be convenient for AA to do homework on and for my correspondence center.
Now off to St. Augustine to pick up a Craig's list bargain and deliver some Valentine candy for the Grands! And then cooking Chinese Stir-Fry for dinner. Getting close to Chinese New Year, so in that "Chinese" mood!
Hoisin Asian Meatballs
1 pound ground beef
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup Panko
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 large egg
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 green onions, thinly sliced, plus more for garnish
Sesame seeds, for garnish

For the Hoisin Sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
(fresh grated ginger if you wish to add to both)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat; set aside.
In a large bowl, combine ground beef, sesame oil, Panko, ginger, egg, garlic and green onion. Using a wooden spoon or clean hands, stir until well combined. Roll the mixture into 1 1/4-to-1 1/2-inch meatballs, forming about 18-20 meatballs. (we made about 6 hours ahead, covered tightly with saran wrap on cookie sheet in refrig - worked fine, popping in oven once guests arrived).
Place meatballs onto prepared baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes, or until all sides are browned and meatballs are cooked through.
To make the hoisin sauce, whisk together hoisin sauce, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic and ginger in a small bowl. (I added a 1/2 teas. of freshly grated ginger for additional flavor)
Serve meatballs immediately with hoisin sauce, garnished with green onion and sesame seeds.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Birthday Luncheon Party- February 7th - Maine

The surprise 80th birthday luncheon for my Mom went well, arrived at Auntie Jean's home with plenty of food and family chatter. Melissa made the cake, George made the cupcakes and everyone else brought a salad, fruit or appetizer. Delicious!
Cousin Hilary came so I gave her an early birthday gift - the Downton Abbey Season Five DVD. We love that show!

Deciding on what to eat!
Mom blowing out candles with a little help from Great-Grandson Anthony:
Melissa with son Andrew and very PREGGIE Britney. She's due any day now!
We took several photos of family that had an "8" in their age:
The snow, snow and more snow!
Sunday, took Mom to Dimillo's for mid-dinner; enjoyed my favorite scallops. As we were leaving, the cold air hit us! I think the highest temperature while I was there was 12 degrees!
Hilary standing in front of the wind turbine:
Monday, I met Terri at L.L. Beans and shopped (bought three pants) and lunch at Azure Cafe (it was next closest restaurant to walk to, the cold wind almost drove us to abandon lunch plans!). Dinner was homemade lobster rolls. And sadly, no new baby was born while I was there! But, all good!