Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pumpkin Time!

We bought a cart full of pumpkins at Walmart... 

...I know... 


...But they were only $4 or so and we tend to live by the policy 'the more the merrier' when it comes to pumpkins and jack-o-lantern carving.  

So lots of Walmart pumpkins... to be chopped and carved, speared, knived, scooped and pulped into whatever our minds can come up with.  

I'll be sure to post pics later... but for now- Nora with a pumpkin... and a demonstration of my mad photoshop skills.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween Countdown!

I love Halloween.... its my favorite holiday.  Mr. Incredible and I spent a great deal of time decorating our house and planning a fun party for our friends.  On Halloween night, we move all our decorations to our front yard and door and wait for trick-or-treaters.  Costumed kids have to brave a graveyard filled with mummies and ghouls, duck through a nest of crawling spiders, and then approach our door- where flickering lights and the sounds of someone being tortured in our bathroom greet them.  Last year I received the ultimate compliment from a quivering little trick-or-treater: "You're house is the scariest in the whole neighborhood!!!"

Mission accomplished. [insert sigh of contentment here]

We're gearing up for the 2009 installment of Nielsen Family Halloween...

Here's just a preview of the horrors to come:

One sad pumpkin....

Alien Nora ('take me to your leeeeederrrr')

And of course the ugly girl (because no Halloween is complete with out some sort of cross dressing!)

More to come!

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Well, I'm off to Romania again.

This time for a staff development week.  We are having our entire missionary staff come together for several weeks.  There are special speakers, seminars, and lots of fun things planned too.

I can't go into details since its still a surprise for our staff what all is happening- but I've been planning this for months and am excited to see things all come together.

I'll get there a few days early and am looking forward to visiting out at the orphanage.  I love come back to the orphanage and seeing the kids.  Its kind of funny, but I feel like things are  good when I come back to visit and the kids aren't totally shocked.  They expect me to come back and see them.  They are still excited- but its like they realize that I'm not just a face they get to see once and then that's it.  It also shows how good of a job our staff is doing that the kids aren't completely deprived of individual attention.

I'm also looking forward to meeting our new Transition House residents.  There are 4 girls and 6 boys.  I'm not sure if I'll get to see the boys, but I am  definitely planning a trip out to the village to the Girls' House.  After spending an entire summer living at the GTH, it still kind of feels like a second home.  And its been over 3 years!  But I still know where they keep the coffee filters and feel the urge to water the roses or pet the dogs.

Speaking of dogs, Nora is in charge while I'm away.  Mr. Incredible has his new job to worry about so Nora is picking up the slack on  house work and making dinner.

So I'll post more as I get there... or follow my Travel Tweets!

Up and Away!


Monday, October 12, 2009

birthday wishes

My family celebrates birthdays.... umm, how should I say it... uniquely?  We like to go out to celebrate, like most families.  Celebrations usually include dinner somewhere special and then a time of gifts and dessert. Lately, Mr. I and my place has been the dessert/present location (we're closer to restaurants than R-mona).

So far, everything sounds normal-right?  Dinner usually works pretty well (minus a little social awkwardness that seems to run in the family).  Dessert is usually good too.  But the gift opening is where the unique part comes out.

This weekend we celebrated my mom's birthday.  We went to SD's best BBQ place-

After almost an hour of waiting in line outside, we finally were seated and chowing down into delicious baby back ribs... oh those ribs!  BBQ heaven...

Then we headed back to my house for dessert.  I made these super sweet, super cute little cupcakes, ala Bakerella.

Then we went on to the gifts...

Rule Nr. 1 for Gift Giving:  If the gift can be used to further an ongoing joke or to capitalize on a long running issue of family contention, it is appropriate.  (this trumps any useful or thoughtful gift idea)

Rule Nr. 2 for Gift Giving:  Gnomes are always a good gift.

Rule Nr. 3 for Gift Giving:  If you can't wrap it, if the gift doesn't arrive in time, or for some other foreseen reason (and we've experienced them all!) just wrap up a part of the gift or a picture of it with a note inside.

So here's what my mom got for her birthday:

a snuggie... (a leopard print snuggie I must add)
[note: Rule Nr. 1]

a gnome (who wouldn't hold still during the photos)....
[Rule Nr. 2]

... and a piece of bamboo flooring with a coupon glued on the back.
The coupon is from my dad, good for new floors in my mom's office.
[Rule Nr. 3]

My mom's b-day festivities pretty much sum up a typical Sorrels' Family birthday celebration.  And Christmas too... but then everyone gets to open 'unique' gifts!

Happy Birthday Mom!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009


...has been kind of eventful lately.  I don't want to say life has been crazy since that kind of implies lots of unexpected things.  But lots of things- some expected some not- have all converged at once in our lives.

For instance, at work I had two new full-time 'employees' come on rather quickly.  While we were expecting them, the timing was quicker than I had thought.  While processing their paperwork along with my other job duties, my next trip to Romania has been quickly approaching... and now I have a week left before I board the plane (again).

Another big event was Mr. Incredible receiving a job offer.  After nearly 8 months of searching Craig's List, interviewing, and filling out unemployment paperwork, Mr. I will finally be rejoining the work force! We are very excited.  However, in those 8 months, all of Mr. Incredible's shoes have worn out, his pants are stained and hole-y, and his shirts- well he probably shouldn't really wear them in public, especially for his first day at a new job.  (Mr. I's clothing policy is "wear 'em til they can be worn no mo'!")  So shopping we have gone and will continue to go.  (thank GOD for

Halloween is this month (duh, I know) and that's a very big deal here at Christmas Tree Face... the mummies and ghouls are still in my garage- moaning and carrying on about being released to the front yard.  A few oversized spiders and nasty things have made an appearance around my house but there is much to do before the big haunt (and party!)

So eventful my life will continue to be.  Which is not a bad thing.

So here's a nice scary Halloween-type photo of Mr. I preparing for work at his new job (i.e. playing around with PhotoBooth features on his new laptop)