Our Family

Our Family

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

2010: You Were So Good to Us

Now that we are almost a month into 2011, I think it's time to close 2010 and open 2011.  We had a great year and are looking forward to an even better 2011.  

Here is a quick recap of 2010:
Andrew celebrated his 30th with some great friends!
We enjoyed Madison and everything it had to offer in the spring, summer and fall.
 We took a lot of GREAT trips!
Like this one with the girls to Colorado.
 And this one to California for Amit and Harini's Wedding in Orange County.
 We celebrated 2 years of marriage.
 We worked really hard on the house...including a total kitchen overhaul.
 Another phenomenal trip....this one to the Finger Lakes Region of New York.
 Lots of Hawkeye Football, as usual.
 Our last trip of the year to Pittsburgh and State College, PA to see some old friends.  We had so much fun we are already planning the same trip for this fall.

 Our friends welcomed a lot of babies.
We ended the year on a high note with a fabulous New Years Eve with Andrew's sister and Craig and our closest friends. We started the night pre-partying with some Clicquot at the Best Western thanks to Patti and Dan.  Then headed to Fresco for an absolutely delicious! meal, then on to the Majestic for an epic dance party with Hometown Sweethearts and Mama Dig Downs Big Brass Band.  It was an excellent night that was capped off with a day of football watching on New Years Day.

Linds and Craig at Fresco....enjoying their cocktails. 
 The Hubs and I.
 My Sauk Trail Girls.
 The whole gang.
 Rockin' out at the Majestic.
 The boys.

Many things we are looking forward to in 2011:
*Spring Break Trips--Paige to Charlotte to visit her bestie Beth, and Ange to Florida to visit his dad.
*A trip with Mom and Mike sometime this spring.
*A trip to Spain and France this summer.
*Another wonderful year of marriage; that makes it 3! 
*More home renovations, this summer: the backyard.
*Lots of friends welcoming babies.
*Many more friends tying the knot. 
*Another trip to PA for some football: Iowa at Penn St.

Here's to a great 2011.  We hope that you and your loved ones have a happy and healthy year.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Merry Christmas to Us

As always, our holidays were filled with lots of family and friends.  This year we actually documented it because we bought ourselves a new camera for Christmas!!  After doing some research and asking around, we decided on the Canon Rebel XS Digital SLR!  It is so beautiful and it is so much fun to use.  The pictures in our last post, were taken with the new camera.  Here are more shots from our busy holiday weekend.

**Warning picture overload.
Mom and Mike's grandson, CJ.  That's his happy face...seriously.
Addison reads books Michael Jordan style.
 Kaitlyn experiencing one of the Toxic Waste: Hazardously Sour Candy that was in her stocking.  Thanks Papa Bear.
Brooke's turn.
 Sara and the Hartke family welcomed Taylor Lauren on Thanksgiving Day.  
Such a cutie.  
 Cole smiling big for the camera.
 Loving the little nugget.
 Look at those little toes.
 So peaceful looking.  She slept through everything...
....and I mean everything, even when we made her do a touchdown for the Bears!

We also got in some serious Hayden time with a week off in Madison.  
 We finally got to try Dotty Dumpling's Dowry before the UW Hockey game.  I'm declaring it the best burger we've had in Madison!
 Sporting our Blackhawks gear.  Notice the sweet jersey Andrew got for Christmas.

I love the quality of the pictures and the fact that you can take about a million pictures a second.  We got some really good faces (especially with the sour candy) on all the kiddos with the ability to take pictures really fast.  I can't wait to learn more about it and figure out all the cool things it can do.  

Until then, we'll continue to wear the neck strap and carry it like a newborn baby.  

Monday, January 3, 2011

We Make Our Gifts-That's How We Roll

The holidays are some of my favorite times of the year.  We get to spend a good amount of time with our families and friends, relax and eat a ridiculous amount of delicious food.  This year was extra special because Andrew's sister, Lindsay and her boyfriend, Craig were in town from North Carolina for an extended stay both in Schaumburg and Madison. 

As some of you may know, several years ago, with Andrew's family, we wanted to stop buying gifts for everyone.  We were tired of buying "things" and wanted our holidays to be more special, so we decided to institute a rule that from that year on, all gifts must either be consumable, re-gifts or made. 

Now as the years have gone by, our holidays have become even more unique.  The first holiday with our new rule Patti gave Andrew and Lindsay some of their favorite childhood Christmas decorations, including Clowny, a beloved scary clown ornament, and Baby Jesus, a tree decoration with specific rules for placing on the tree.  Some other favorite gifts from over the years include Linds' gift to Andrew last year of a mix CD of all of their favorite songs from their favorite movies and shows from growing up. 

We started this year, as usual, with delicious fondue.  As a tradition, Andrew's family, for as long as he can remember, have always fondued on Christmas Eve.  With twice-baked potatoes, crescent rolls and an array of sauces thanks to Dan, our steak and shrimp fondue always is something we look forward to.  We then share our gifts, one gift at a time, to really enjoy each and every moment.

Here are some favorites from the fondue portion of our eventing. 
Our sauces (yep, there are 6)
 We pulled out a bottle of wine from our trip to Italy.
 The table set with 2 fondue pots (one for only meat because of my shellfish allergy- we make sure to set someone responsible, who will actually remember down at my end), lots of wine, veggies, meat, thriced-baked-potatoes and more. 

To work off all that oil, food and wine and because it was a beautiful night, we took a walk in the snow.

This year we continued our same traditions, but as I mentioned earlier, it was extra special with Linds and Craig here with us.  Here are some of the favorite gifts this year:

 The makings for Hawkeye Crunch including DIY Hawkeye Bowl from Linds and Craig.
 Koozies for the men: Iowa for Ange, Sailing for Dan (again from Linds).
Andrew and I painted a football-shaped bowl for the OSU fan.  He was super happy about it until he saw the back.  We couldn't spend HOURS on a plate like this and not pay tribute to our Hawkeyes.

This just might be the gift of the year: Linds made Andrew Hawkeye wings.  
Yep, you heard right...take a look at those bad boys.
Another good one: Dan has started to like Iowa football and has taken a liking to Marvin McNutt.  Who wouldn't with a name like that, so we re-gifted an old Iowa sweatshirt with some DIY on the back.
 Craig is a man of class and distinction.  Linds proved that point with a book of pictures of Craig enjoying all types of meat. 
 We re-gifted a set of photo coasters and put some of Linds' favorite childhood movies with trivia on the back as the photos.  Some of the movies included: Lucas, Adventures in Babysitting and Overboard.
 Dan and Patti re-gifted some rewards points with a poem included.
 Lindsay made Patti beautiful embroidered napkins.
And don't forget about the scarves I knitted as explained in this post. 

As you can see it was another successful Christmas for the Sutton, Bessick and Dye clan.  We stayed up late, ate ourselves silly, drank a lot, shared some special memories and squeezed 6 of us into Patti and Dan's for a not-so-good night sleep-but it was all worth it. 

The next morning, we opened stockings, enjoyed some sticky buns and headed to my mom's for our Christmas with them.  But not before we got a glimpse of our very own Clark Griswold.  
The resemblance is uncanny, just trust us on this one...

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