Smiles, Soup, Santa and Silliness…

Last Wednesday night, Kaylee, Scott and Elise came over so that we could take the annual Christmas family photo.  It was past Elise’s bedtime, and we had a little difficulty getting her to cooperate!  The girls were upset that we hadn’t gotten the Christmas tree up yet…perhaps if they’d cleaned up the living room, it might have happened!  They also vetoed me wearing one of Jim’s Christmas ties!  Here’s the final product, courtesy of Jim and Photoshop:

Christmas Family Photo 2011...Back: Dad, Kaylee, Scott, Elise, Wendy, Jim. Front: Devin holding Jake, Anna, Hope, Brianna. Photo by Jim.


I was home nursing my infected toe again on Tuesday (it’s better now)…I happened to glance out the window and saw three deer making themselves at home near the fence to my garden.  I went outside to scare them off.  While I was there, I noticed my forgotten leek plants…four of them…standing in what was left of my ruined garden.  Since leeks are a member of the onion family, deer don’t like them!  I decided it would be a wonderful time to dig them up (the leeks, not the deer!).

Fooled by the balmy temperature (about 50 degrees F.), I was shocked to discover that the leeks did not budge when I pulled on the stalks…the ground was frozen!  Not to be deterred, I went back in the house and grabbed a big kettle of hot water, and retrieved my trusty garden fork from the garage.  I wrestled the kettle down the back steps and poured it on the earth surrounding the plants.  I plunged the sharp tines of the fork in, and began to wiggle the tool back and forth until the leek plants were loosened enough to pull out.  Three big ones and a small one…not bad!

Bucket of leeks, fresh from the garden...


I followed instructions from the Internet on how to clean and prepare the leeks, never having done it before!  I also took pictures, which did not turn out because the batteries in the camera were dying…the multiple rechargeables I had purchased were nowhere to be found!  I finally borrowed Anna’s camera to take this photo of the leeks after I cut them up:

Cut leeks in the measuring cup...


I ended up with two cups of leeks for my trouble…I decided to make vegetable soup.  Yesterday morning before I left for the bookstore, I cut up onions, carrots and potatoes, and loaded them into the Crock-Pot, along with some herbs, chicken and vegetable bouillion cubes dissolved in hot water.  We had it last night…not bad, but I’m hoping it will gain more flavour after sitting in the fridge overnight (homemade soup is usually better the second day).

This morning, I opened up my Facebook as usual, and was happy to see that my cousin, Caryn and her husband, Jaime, had taken their little boys to see Santa:

Four-year-old Alex is an old pro at this...natural charm!


Then, it was two-month-old Nico’s turn:

"Whatchoo talkin' about, Santa?"


Now it’s your turn: Come up with a caption for Nico’s visit with Santa.  The person with the winning entry will receive a handmade metal Christmas ornament made by my friend, Scott McDade, from The Recycling Bin (you probably won’t get it in time to use this year, but put it away for next year!).  Deadline for entries is Monday, December 19th.

Win one of these ornaments made from recycled cookie tins! Photo by Scott McDade.


Filed under family, food, gardening

35 responses to “Smiles, Soup, Santa and Silliness…

  1. Judy

    Caption for Nico’s picture “Movember is over already, get rid of the fur!!”
    Beautiful pictures all around Wendy!!

  2. The family picture is great, Wendy! Cute pictures of your cousin’s kids. My caption for Nico’s picture is: “Ew. This guy has stinky breath.”
    Merry Christmas!

  3. Love Nico’s expression! That would make an awesome Hallmark card. Here’s my caption: “Lose the beard, fatty. It’s itching my delicate baby skin.”

    So glad your toe is better!

  4. Gosh, Wendy, I’m terrible with captions, but I love the idea of the ornament give-away and contest. I will give this some thought and see what I can come up with.

  5. Oh my goodness, Nico looks soooo squeezable. Alex has the drill down though! Wonderful photos.

  6. Lovely family picture. I will try to think of a caption but I’m having a hard time getting over Santa in the Santa picture with Nico-he is the real deal.

  7. I don’t need an onament, but how about “Nico is upset that only Santa gets a beard and mustache.” That is the most authentic looking Santa ever. And your family Christmas photo is great.

  8. jacquelincangro

    A lovely family photo, Wendy! It’s terrific that Jake got into the act too. 🙂

  9. “And they woke me up and took me out of my comfy bed for this? Sheesh.”

    Hope your toe is healing fast!

  10. Merry Christmas to you and yours! Love the Santa photos! Too cute!

  11. Barb

    I’m goin get you for this some day Mom! LOL

    Love the photo cuz! Miss you all the time but especially this time of year! Sorry about your toe! Love to ALL!♥

  12. Diane

    I so love the photos, especially baby Nico’s.

    My photo caption…hmmmm

    “This guy’s beard is itchy and he smells funny. I am so not happy right now!”

    Love the post ❤

  13. All great photos, Wendy. That Santa is perfect! How about for the caption: Even as a little baby on Santa’s lap, Winston Churchill was thinking about weighty matters. Like the contents of his diaper.

  14. There’s nothing like a full house – and yard – over the holidays, is there? Great post, Wendy!

  15. Nice family photo 🙂

    Those little guys sure are cute.

    My caption? “I thought you said we were going to Olive Garden …”

  16. LOVE the family photo, you all look wonderful!

    Caption: What did I want for Christmas? To play with my thumbs! But no, instead, I get more Christmas pajamas with the mitten hand arms!!!

  17. Pingback: A Christmas and Bookywook Blog Mash-up « Jess Witkins' Happiness Project

  18. Pingback: And the Winner is… | Herding Cats in Hammond River

  19. Well, I missed this post last month! How did you grow the leeks? From starts? I’ve wanted to grow them, as I love cooking with leeks, but do not see starts locally for sale. (guess I could go online)
    Glad, at least, your leeks were spared by the deer 😀

    • I grew the leeks from SEED, Spectra…started it indoors and it took forever to get going! It was my first time growing them…think I’ll start them earlier this year! My friend in France grows them in a greenhouse…hers are amazing! Wendy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s