Monday, September 28, 2009

Grape Festival

Token and I decided to wander out of the confines of our house yesterday and head up to a Grape Festival on the slopes of Mt. Etna. We went at the perfect time of day... hardly any crowds, easy to find parking, and no pushing or shoving. Unfortunately, since there weren't many people, it was kind of boring. And, we didn't find or see any grapes. Kinda strange!  Oh well. It was all worth it for this:

CORN!!!! Do you *know* how badly I've been wanting fresh corn on the cob? Let's just say that I have dreamed about it. Token bought four ears. While it's not Indiana corn, it's not frozen, and therefore tastes  amazing. Oh corn, how I've missed you.

Sicilian festivals are nothing without cute little blobs of stinky cheese. This booth in particular was extra repungent.

There were really, really old Sicilian carts, which were really ornate and cool.

Each cart has a story associated with it. This one seems to be about deception and murder. Scandalous!

There were also bright and happy painted carts. But what's the fun in that?

We might possibly go to a festival honoring the beloved pistachio this weekend. We'll see how I feel. After we got home from this festival, I conked out on the couch for a few hours. Walking those cobblestone streets takes a lot out of ya!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

37 weeks on the dot!

Like our new duvet cover and haphazardly made bed? :p

Token takes on the flu mist

Token got his first ever flu "shot" in the form of the nasal mist yesterday. In his 34 years of life, he's never had a flu shot, but there was a Health Fair on base yesterday and they oh-so conveniently were offering them, so he decided to dive in and just do it.

Here he is, stating that he wasn't planning on getting pregnant on the consent form... wouldn't that be a medical mystery?

Here is he, questioning why I'm taking his picture.

One side....

Other side....


You're so brave!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Token's famous!

I'll have to update this with the translation later. I typed "Patto Pro Giovani" into Google translate and got Patty Pro Giovani. Somehow I don't think that's the correct translation!

This came out in La Sicilia, a pretty big Sicilian newspaper here.

UPDATE! Here's the translation:

Today carries a news note about yesterday's Catania Regional Province Sports and Relations with Sigonella Councilor Capuana visit to the MWR facilities at NAS I. Capuana, who hosted a meeting with the base commanders a few months ago, met with MWR officials John Lastname and Token Lastname to discuss cultural, recreational and sports events which would bring Italian and American youngsters together.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Surprise - it's a baby shower!!

Token surprised me with a co-ed baby shower last night. I was so blown away with the amount of work and attention to detail he put into everything... I'll admit, I cried when I walked into the room. I am such a lucky lady!!

There were around 38 people there to help us celebrate the impending arrival of our baby girl. I didn't have my camera with me, but a few people took pictures and as soon as I get some of them, I'll post them on here.

Token ordered a bunch of flowers to be centerpieces. Here's the one that was on the 'head' table.

This was set up at the front of the restaurant. He rented out a room at an Italian restaurant close to base. It was awesome!!

He put out a book and encouraged everyone to leave little bits and pieces of advice...

We also played games... the first was a word scramble. The second was that he had five different flavors of baby food sitting out and people had to guess what each of them was. The third was for the guys only... they had to blow up a balloon and stick it under their shirts, and, while holding a potato between their knees, had to make it down to a bucket and drop the potato in it. It was hilarious! The fourth was for the girls only, and was an ode to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. There was a bunch of diapers, a bottle filled with juice, and a bunch of pacifiers, and we had to someone figure out a way to build a free-standing tower with everything he gave us. It was fun!! I'm sure there are pictures out there, and as soon as I get some, I'll update this post.

In between games, we ate... Italian appetizers, two kinds of pasta, and meat. There was cake at the end, too. Token is quite the party planner, but did anyone ever question that?!?

Take a look at this diaper cake one of Token's coworkers made for us. Amazing!!!

She knows I like birds, so she put this on top. It's a mom bird and a dad bird and an egg. So cute! (and she made the birds. Cool, right?)


Little baby socks mixed in with the diapers...

One more look.

It was definitely a party I'll never forget. I feel so loved.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Nursery Update!

The wall decal is up! It's cute.... a LOT pinker than I thought it was going to be, but I'm hopeful it'll grow on me.

Here's Token doing his thing!

Nikko always has be involved. He's found a new nap spot... the changing table!

Now, it looks like the decal clashes REALLY badly with the red wall, but if you see it in person, it's not so bad.

And here's the room so far... it's getting there! (just a note, Italian homes don't have closets, hence the freaking huge armoire that's rapidly being filled with clothes!)

It's getting there! I ordered a bunch of cute prints off of and they should be here soon. Two will go on the left wall, two will go on the right wall, and one will go behind the rocking chair.

Oh, and you want to know what Token said to me after he was done? "I'm going to go watch sports." I think the pink is getting to him! :p

Monday, September 07, 2009

Happy Labor Day!

It's Labor Day - the day that marks the unofficial start of Fall, and the day where women nationwide hang up their white pants and shoes until next Spring. Since I'll be the one laboring in just a few short weeks, Token decided to spend his holiday working on Baby Girl's nursery. The ultimate task? Get the curtains hung. Now, you may think that this is an easy task, but you'd be wrong. The curtains our landlords originally hung were all kinds of crazy (including chopping off the nail at the base so their tenants couldn't remove them (mwhahaha), so Token had to figure out a way to get them down and get the new ones up. I must say, he did a fabulous job! (ignore that chair sitting there... it was Token's ladder)

Nikko even helped! :p

Next up? The wall decal that's going up behind the crib. I must say, it's coming together really well!!!

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Want a yummy Mac & Cheese recipe?

I caved and made mac & cheese last week. I've been able to resist for, oh, 8.5 months now, but decided I had to eat it before the baby comes because afterward I'll be trying to lose weight, and let's just say that this recipe isn't very diet-friendly.

It's called Homestyle Mac & Cheese and came from a recipe book from Gooseberry Patch. It's so easy and soooo delish!

Preheat oven to 325.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Pour in 2 cups (I usually do about 2.5 to 3 cups) pasta of your choice (I've done penne, ziti, cavatappi, and regular 'ol elbows) and cook until al dente (not *quite* done). After pasta is done, transfer to a mixing bowl.
Melt 2 T. butter in a saucepan over medium/low heat.
Add 2 T. flour to the butter and whisk together until absorbed.
Slowly pour in 3/4 cups milk and whisk together with flour/butter mixture until thick.
Add a pinch of salt, pinch of pepper, and some dried diced onion (I've used fresh, too, and it's good)
Whisk everything together. Bump up the temperature a little bit and add 2 liberal cups of the shredded cheese of your choice. The recipe calls for 1 cup of Colby Jack and 1 cup of Cheddar, but I just use whatever we have on hand (unless it's mozzarella. I don't think that would work very well).
Mix everything together until the cheese is completely melted.
Add the cheese sauce to the pasta and stir together.
Add 1 cup sour cream to the pasta and mix.
Pour pasta into a baking dish. Sprinkle with shredded cheese and paprika. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly.