Tag Archives: Family Memories

I Remember When…… #PreservingMemories #CBias


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……..watching more family videos! Okay, last month when Amanda and I zipped over to the UPS Store to drop off some of our family videos, I had no idea that I would fall head over heals in love with my family all over again! I snagged 10 video tapes from when the kids were little for this grand experiment, and now I am so sorry I didn’t send in every, single last one. The whole process was so simple; using the iMemories program through the UPS Store, I was able to convert our various and obsolete 8mm and VHS tapes into fabulous digital media.

 

If you are interested, you can read all about our experience dropping off our tapes last month, by visiting my earlier post:

http://moreismoremom.wordpress.com/2011/11/02/thanks-for-the-memory-preservingmemories-cbias/

 

Otherwise, I can bring you up to date right here, right now.

 

The whole process was really easy. After I searched every nook and cranny in our home, I found our family videos in their various incarnations. To give the iMemories program a try, Amanda and I chose 10 videos to convert into digital media. Then, we stopped off at our friendly, local UPS Store at 2206 N. Main St, Wheaton, IL. While there, owner Sunny Patel helped me package up my videos and send them on their merry way to the iMemories factory.

 

Shortly thereafter, I received an email that changed my life; it was from the nice people at iMemories providing me with a link to view all of our videos. After dinner, I poured Chuck and myself a glass of wine, scooped a bowl full of ice cream for Amanda and we huddled around the computer like folks used to sit around listening to the radio!

 

Nick and Amanda were adorable and Chuck and I looked so young! We watched as they learned to walk and talk and become the people they are today; Nick rollerblading in our driveway and Amanda cart wheeling in the front yard. After several evenings, we finally made it through all of the videos.

 

What was amazing to me was not only being able to watch the videos, but also having the ability to manipulate and edit them. I was totally anxious to give it a try, so Amanda and I decided to create a Christmas compilation DVD. It was sooo easy. All we had to do was drop in each clip, in order, frame by frame, and the video was complete.

 

Last night, our UPS man made his way to our front door, despite Wrigley’s incessant barking. I couldn’t rip the package open fast enough! Inside, there it was; the Holy Grail of family memories.

 

We are so in love with our video! After she finished her homework, Amanda started uploading all of the family videos we have on our computer to our iMemories account. I am planning to drop off the remainder of our videos this week, and in no time at all, we’ll finally have every last memory preserved as digital media. I can’t wait!!!

 

To view all of the details of my iMemories experience at the UPS Store, please check out;

http://my.thismoment.com/moment/view/75876/thanks-for-the-memorycbias-preservingmemories-with-imemories-at-the-ups-store

 

More memories, more family videos, more iMemories at the UPS Store, more celebrating family moments…..

 

To schedule and Interior Design appointment or Life Style consultation, or for any questions or comments, please email me at more is moreismoremom@aol.com

 

This shop has been compensated  as part of a social shopper insights study for http://collectivebias.com #CBias This experience and these memories are all my own.

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Things That I Am Thankful For…..


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about…..more giving thanks! This week, I was especially thankful for my eight hour, round trip, road trip on Tuesday to snag Nick for Thanksgiving break (I’d gladly walk over hot coals to be with him). Wrigley was “Wrigley excited” when we got to campus and after much badgering (from me….who is the grown up here?), Nick finally relented and allowed Wrigley to take the grand tour of his dorm and check out his digs. The scent of smelly boys was, apparently, spectacular!

There was a lot of fun to squeeze into a few short days.

I’m thankful that over his 19 years, Nick has developed rich and rewarding friendships. He made a bee-line for B-Dub’s (aka…Buffalo Wild Wings) to meet up with his high school pals. Wednesday was devoted to a brother/sister outing with Nick’s oldest friend, Miguel, and his kid sister, Mrs. McGoobles (who happens to be one of Amanda’s nearest and dearest’s), with the evening reserved for a visit with Chuck’s parents; pasta and looking at family pictures. It was perfect.

I’m thankful that while dragging a teenager out of bed in the morning is never an easy task (particularly on a holiday), Nick was remarkably agreeable in joining me and my girlfriends for our Turkey Trot. There’s nothing quite like starting the day with a 5 mile run! The rest of our morning was spent over breakfast and the most recent episodes from our favorite TV program, Modern Family. Thank God for the DVR! Later, we stuffed ourselves with turkey and all the fixin’s with my family. We were especially thankful that Wrigley managed not to swipe a single item off the dinner table. Not because he was good, but because he was on a very short leash (we of little faith).

 I’m thankful for moments spent with my best gal. As it turns out, Amanda is sometimes her mother’s daughter. We rolled out of bed at 3am to hit the Black Friday sales with a trip to the outlet mall. There were people EVERYWHERE! The wait to get into the Coach store alone was an hour and twenty minutes, at four in the morning. Talk about shop ‘til you drop!

I am thankful for the world’s greatest mom and most generous step-father. In celebration of George’s 70th birthday, it was my pleasure to do the cooking as they entertained 40 friends and family in their home. We feasted on shrimp cocktail, crab bisque soup, smoked salmon and caramelized onion dip, steak crostini’s, chicken Caesar salad spears and gourmet pizza. The most touching part of the night was when Nick and Amanda spoke about their Boppa and lead the crowd in a rousing rendition of Cole Porter’s You’re the Top!

I’m thankful that the five of us had part of a quiet day together Sunday morning. We watched old family movies, snuggled with Wrigley and had lunch together before we loaded Nick and his laundry back into the car, headed for College Town, USA.

I’m thankful that Chuck took one for the team by attacking the round trip road trip, because there is little worse than leaving Nick behind at school.

However, I’m most thankful that we’ll all be together again in a few short weeks for Christmas!

More time together, more Modern Family marathons, more turkey with all of the fixin’s, more reasons for Thanksgiving……

To schedule and Interior Design appointment or Life Style consultation, or for any comments or questions, please email me at moreismoremom@aol.com

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Thanks For the Memory….#PreservingMemories #CBias


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……more family memories! I am a total shutterbug. Nothing makes me happier than surrounding myself with photographs of happy times with family and friends. Memories of Nick taking the faceoff at center ice, Amanda flipping off the diving board, with fetes so daring that the Flying Wallenda’s would be green with envy, and candid family moments, all make me smile.

 

Family Memories...Nick and Amanda were peanuts!

While still photographs capture that perfect moment in time, family videos absolutely come to life. It’s been years since we’ve watched any of our videos. Technology being what it is, our home is down to exactly one VHS player and you can forget those 8mm tapes. The video camera that belonged to those has long since petered out.

 

Recently I learned about iMemories, where moments live on, at the UPS store. For years Chuck and I have been talking about transferring all of our home movies to digital media. Now, here was our big chance.

 

The new iMemories program through the UPS store could not have been easier for the technologically challenged (such as myself). My brother always accuses me of being one zipper away from being Amish! This experience was so simple that even I could do it.

 

The tricky part was locating all of our videos. They were buried in the bowels of my closet, behind the t-shirts, sweaters, blouses and sweatshirt’s, but there they were in all of their 8mm and VHS glory! You see, it turns out that iMemories can turn any of your moldy old analog media into a fancy new digital format.

 

UPS Store, 2206 N. Main St, Wheaton, IL 61087

I tossed all of my tapes into a tote bag and headed out the door for my Saturday morning errands. You know, the usual; bank, grocery store, dry cleaner’s and my UPS store at 2206 Main Street, Wheaton. There I met owner, Sunny Patel, who was extremely helpful.

 

The process was so easy;

I organized my videos.

Sunny gave me the order forms, which I filled out.

He decided on the appropriate size box.

We sealed up the box and I was ready to go.

 

The best thing was that while I was at the UPS store, I was able to send Nick all the items that he requested to get him through to Thanksgiving. The only thing better would have been if he had considered that before we dropped him back off back at school 10 days ago. No matter. The UPS store had exactly what I needed. All we had to do was decide on the perfect size box.

 

As it turns out, our videos should be digitized within the next few weeks, which will be just in time to relive our family memories this Thanksgiving.

To view my whole shopping experience, visit me at MyMoment:

http://my.thismoment.com/moment/view/75876/thanks-for-the-memorycbias-preservingmemories-with-imemories-at-the-ups-store

More photos, more videos, more iMemories, more UPS, more family moments……

 

To schedule an Interior Design appointment, a Life Style consultation or a speaking engagement, please email me at moreismoremom@aol.com

 

This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for http://collectivebias.com  #CBias  This experience, and these opinions, are my own.

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An Egg-ceptional Start To The New Year!


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about….a more meaningful start to the New Year! Whether you ring in the New Year in Times Square or in the privacy of your own home, why not kick off January 1st with a gorgeous and delicious meal? There is nothing better than lounging around in your pajamas, enjoying the day with your family. I like to make our time together special; setting the table with linens and cloth napkins, candles, stemware and china. Rather than serve something ordinary, I like to take it up a few notches, serving a beautiful brunch.

I am a huge fan of the Egg Casserole; in fact, I just made my husband, Chuck’s, favorite one on Christmas morning. To welcome in the New Year however, I love a hearty meal that can be served for breakfast (who could possibly be up that early?), brunch or dinner; the Croque-Madame. Doesn’t that sound impressive? In essence, it’s a very fancy-schmancy grilled cheese sandwich, topped with a very tasty fried egg.

This is the most amazing recipe and the sandwich is going to absolutely melt in your mouth. While I’m all about a fabulous meal, my first consideration is for the safety of my family. This recipe calls for the fried egg to be just set, still a little bit runny. It tastes amazing, but I’d hate to run the risk of exposing my family to salmonella. Who wants a run to the Emergency Room when there is more fun to be had? That is why I used Safest Choice™ Pasteurized Shell Eggs.

Safest Choice Pasteurized Shell Eggs

 

 Croque-Madame:

Serves 4

Sauce ingredients

Sauce:

1 stick of butter

3 Tbsp all-purpose flour

2 cups of whole milk

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp black pepper

¼ tsp grated nutmeg

1/3 cup of shredded cheese, something that melts nicely. I used a sharp cheddar

Sandwich:

 

Sandwich Ingredients

 

8 slices of sandwich bread

5 tsp Dijon Mustard

10 slices of cooked Canadian bacon (or ham)

4 large eggs

Sauce:

The sauce becomes luscious and thick. It’s so good; you could eat it with a spoon!

In a saucepan, over medium-low heat, melt;

4 Tbsp butter

 

Whisk in;

3 Tbsp flour

Whisking continually for 3 minutes

Add;

 

2 cups of milk

Whisk and bring to a boil

Reduce heat to a simmer, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes

Add;

 

Salt

Pepper

Nutmeg

Cheese

Whisk until cheese is thoroughly melted

 

Remove from the heat and immediately cover with a piece of wax paper

Sandwiches:

Pre-heat oven to broil

Lay out all 8 slices of bread

On four, spread;

2 Tbsp of sauce

Sprinkle with 1 cup of cheese, ¼ cup per slice

On the remaining 4 pieces, spread;

5 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 ¼ tsp on each slice

Top each slice of bread with 2 pieces of Canadian bacon

Flip Dijon mustard and Canadian bacon slice of bread onto the sauce and cheese slice to make a sandwich

In a skillet, melt;

2 Tbsp of butter

Once foamy and melted, place sandwich in skillet for 1-2 minutes

 

Adding another Tbsp of butter if necessary, flip sandwiches over for another 1-2 minutes

Remove from skillet, and place on a greased pan (I like to line mine with aluminum foil for easier clean up)

Top each sandwich with;

1/3 cup of sauce

Broil sandwich for 3-4 minutes, at least 6 inches form the heat, until the sauce is bubbly and golden

 

Keep warm

Wipe out skillet

Add;

1 tsp of butter for every two eggs fried, over medium heat

 

Break Safest Choice™ Pasteurized Shell Eggs into skillet

Sprinkle with;

Salt

Pepper

Cook for 3 minutes, or until yolks are just set, and likely still runny

 

Carefully remove from skillet and place one fried egg on each sandwich

It would be lovely to accompany the egg sandwich with a light, mixed green salad and some fresh fruit

Light Salad Dressing;

Serves 4

In a small bowl, whisk together;

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar

1 tsp Dijon mustard

3 Tbsp oil

Toss onto 4-6 cups of mixed tender greens

Top with a soft crumbled cheese, such as feta or goat cheese

Fresh Fruit;

Mixed berries, such as strawberries, raspberries and blueberries are lovely

 

 

The evening before, I like to set my table. I chose a warm golden hue, with a variety of textures; velvet, basket weave, damask and bamboo. The juxtaposition creates an interesting arrangement.

 

All that’s left now is to plate, serve and enjoy.

More delicious meals, more family time, more fresh starts…..

I’m so excited to be working with Safest Choice™ Pasteurized Shell Eggs. I’m a Chicago girl and I love that they are a Chicago area company. Their message promotes educating the public on the importance of serving our families safe eggs, and I’m all about making more healthy and safe meals for my family. 

To join in the fun, you should totally consider entering their Eggs Your Way recipe contest http://www.safeeggs.com/consumers/recipes/

I hope you’ll have an opportunity to try Safest Choice™. Why not get a coupon by liking them on their Facebook page?

http://www.facebook.com/SafeEggs#!/SafeEggs?v=app4949752878

Egg-Ceptional Croque-Madame With Lightly Dressed Greens and Fresh Fruit 

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Memories of Christmas….


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……a more relaxing Christmas with my family! Well, we did it; we simplified our Christmas Eve celebration. Gone, this year, was the four course, four star dinner (along with the days of prep and hours of clean up). Gone was the elaborate and gorgeous tablescape (along with the ironing of the linens and the polishing of the silver). Gone were the fancy frocks (along with the dry cleaning bill). This year we ushered in Christmas with casual, comfortable style, with all the pomp and circumstance reserved for Christmas Day.

I thrive on the rat race. I absolutely live for complicated matters, trouble and aggravation, all for the sake of authenticity, but even I must confess, the respite was welcome. The afternoon began with our annual cocktail and appetizer festivities with my friend Judy and her family. Putting our children (one college and three High School students) in charge of arriving at church early enough to secure a pew, while the adults arrived in just enough time for a little socializing before we took our seats.

What a treat! Instead of getting dinner underway after mass, we slipped into our sweats, packed up the car, with Wrigley in tow, and headed to my mom and George’s house in Chicago for our new and improved celebration. On the way, we made a pit stop at our favorite Chinese restaurant, Chicago’s famous Orange Garden. By 7 pm, we were sitting around the dinner table enjoying the most Heavenly and delicious meal. Who needs a beef tenderloin and crab bisque soup when you’ve got the world’s best egg rolls and shrimp fried rice? Fa-ra-ra-ra-ra (you have seen the cult classic; The Christmas Story, with Ralphie and the Red Ryder BB gun haven’t you?)……and clean up was a snap!

 

Wrigley and his stuffed Christmas bone

 

The remains of a Christmas toy...

It was all so relaxing (except for constantly wrestling Wrigley away from the packages, the tree, the Chinese food, the cookies, everything on the coffee table and all of the squeakers he immediately removed from all of his new toys)! We exchanged gifts, had a few laughs and watched Will Ferrell, in one of his finest performances, Elf. The perfect end to the perfect evening.

 

Cub fans..

 

Nick, Wrigley and Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks

 

Wrigley rubbing Wrigley Field for good luck!

After sleeping in, we opened presents from “Santa” and had a huge breakfast. I made egg casserole and bacon, and George made his world famous, special requested, beer waffles. It was divine. For me, the best part of the day was when my Nick and I laced up our running shoes and took Wrigley for our very own, second annual, Reindeer Run. We zig zagged through the city streets to the Friendly Confines, Wrigley Field. I took a picture of my fellas in front of a souvenir shop, the statue of Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks, and of Wrigley tapping his paw against Wrigley Field for good luck (it was like kissing the Blarney Stone or pulling the sword, Excalibur, out of the stone). Perhaps the curse will be broken in 2011. You heard it hear first.

The evening brought a beautiful dinner with our family and cherished friends. More of everything is always better!

More new traditions, more time with family, more meaningful memories and experiences….

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Filed under Family Life, More is More Mom, my furry son, Wrigley