Wrapping up 2011

Just a few weeks ago my family was all home in New Jersey for Christmas, decorating the tree, rolling out cookies, prepping one of my favorite meals of the year, and trompsing through the woods and fields with dog in tow. With four of us sisters spread across the country, it is a treasured moment when we all are under one roof, let alone home in good ol' NJ.

When we were little we turned into little ballerinas around Christmas time, pausing from our sugar-high-induced Nutcracker "performance" long enough to grab a taste of some "food to eat" (as Karrin used to say, aka sugar cookie dough) before resuming our "dance" - which, much to our frustration, inevitable turned into skipping and galloping in a circle.

I thought it only fitting that I set the following video of us decorating the tree in NJ to the much beloved tune from the Nutcracker. (and I'm happy to say I finally undecorated our Minnesota tree and gave it the boot last night ... so nice to have some more space in our house!)

(I think my favorite part is when, just for a second, Scott pretends to run in front of the camera with lots of animation)

One of my favorite meals of the year: Swedish meatball!

Apple Salad with walnuts and homemade whipped cream

Our sugar cookies are kind of a big deal ; )
The recipe is actually my great-grandma's, and won the purple ribbon at the South Dakota State Fair years ago. Perhaps I will share next Christmas season. The key to decorating is to make an icing, not a traditional frosting.

The Pearson family

the Girls! KCKS (I'm in the process of starting up a sisters blog - I'll let you know once that's up and running)

Christmas morning


Sarah gave us all snuggly mittens!

Evan and dad got matching robes!

Christmas Day hike at Baldpate

Bryant Park, NYC


We wanted to go skating, but the line was way too long

Toparepa at a stand in Bryant Park. YUM.

Rockefeller Center: the tree! Great photo taken by my dad.

Nice pic of the parents in Central Park

Mike can't help but climb on rocks (Central Park)

We walked to the Upper East Side where we used to live (when I was a toddler). Up on one of the top floors!

On our way to the Brooklyn Bridge, here in the subway

Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge, with the Freedom Towers in the background

Impromptu visit with childhood friend Ariella (fellow Nutcracker dancer!) at a coffee shop in Brooklyn!

View of the city from Brooklyn, photo by John Pearson

We all met up at the Tree to congratulate Kirsten and Scott on ....


It was so much fun being in NYC to celebrate with them right away. Probably the highlight of the trip! We're so excited for them and can't wait for all the planning to begin : )

We also enjoyed lots of quality time with Max ... I won't mention who's butt this is ; )
See this post for more pics/videos of us playing with Max last year ... when there was tons of snow!

It's always sad when we all go our separate ways at the end of our visit, but there's a lot of exciting adventures in store for everyone this year .... Kirsten and Scott are planning their wedding (!!!!!), Karrin is headed to Madagascar, Sarah is moving to Alaska in June and will then be off to Africa for a bit, and Evan and I have lots of house projects and trip ideas in the works. Here's to a great start to 2012!


  1. Just a few corrections here...

    you said "with THREE sisters spread across the country"....don't you mean FOUR?

    Oh and the recipe won the purple ribbon at the South Dakota State Fair because Mom was the one who submitted it when she was younger

    Nice video!!

  2. I love this post! Such fond memories of the galloping Nutcracker in your living room 20+ (!!!) years ago...

  3. I should've mentioned that Ariella was a star-performer in the Nutcracker ... she actually had a tutu!


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