extended family secrets – she’s a sourpuss

After Scott’s graduation and brunch on Saturday we spent the afternoon at Joel and Kim’s house relaxing and enjoying the sun.  I read for awhile then joined Todd, Scott and Todd’s dad in a game of bags.

It was a close game but Todd and I pulled through and won.  Since we didn’t want to gloat we claimed the win for Team Neckers which included all present.

Eventually the afternoon led into the evening and we got hungry again.

Thankfully Kim had run into a meat salesman the day before we arrived and was swindled into buying a fridge-full of meat.  That meant a celebratory barbecue for us!  We had steaks, asparagus, the best (and only) potato salad I’ve ever eaten and caprese salad.

It was a delicious, robust meal.  Of course a great meal should be followed up with a great dessert and this meal was no exception.  Kim introduced us to her grandma’s specialty which she calls Sourpuss.

Sour Puss begins like this…

With a few turns of your spoon the separate piles of blueberries, sour cream and brown sugar turn into a sweet, creamy dessert.

I was skeptical but Kim made me a believer – Sourpuss is delicious!  If you need a quick, easy (and interactive!) dessert, this is a great option.

I did a Google search for “sour puss dessert” and found nothing but when I searched “blueberries, sour cream, brown sugar dessert” and got one result.  Apparently Sourpuss is known to the wide world as “Blueberries with Brown Sugar Cream“.  I say that’s a lame name and I’m sticking with calling it Sourpuss.

A few glasses of wine and rounds of Apples to Apples later we were all ready to crawl into bed.  So much fun can be exhausting!  The next day Todd and I headed back home.  It was a whirlwind trip but well worth the quick turnaround.

What desserts are staples at your family get-togethers?


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[not] clear for takeoff

Todd and I are currently sitting side by side on a plane that’s scheduled to land back home in 15 minutes. Unfortunately, the greater Chicago area is experiencing a “weather event”. The delay was about an hour but the captain is now announcing that eastbound flights are not being allowed to depart until further notice. Oh well, thems the breaks.

Happily, the rest of our travel today was been great. We were waiting to board our first flight when we were asked if we’d be willing to volunteer to take a later flight. Since we would still have time to make our connection and we were offered travel vouchers, it was a no-brainer.

When we boarded our flight, only an hour behind schedule, we were delighted to find that our seats were in the Economy Plus section of the plane. Five extra inches of legroom? Yes, please!

As if that weren’t enough, we were presented with a medley of warmed nuts shortly after take off.

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Unexpectedly, we were served lunch later in the flight. A turkey sandwich, salad and chips seem quite fancy on an airplane when served on linens with actual metal silverware.

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We were feeling quite high class at this point. Honestly, it was even better than when we flew first class on our way to Cancun. To top things off, we were given freshly baked chocolate chip cookies after lunch. Nothing makes me happier than fresh, warm cookies.

Nice work, United. Thanks for the upgrade! We really lucked out.

Here on our current flight the engines have been shut off again after a takeoff false alarm. Hopefully we’ll be leaving soon though and its not so bad since we both have a goos book in hand. Wish us luck! From a runway in Chicago, this is Kate, signing off.

Have you ever volunteered to be bumped off a flight?

travel smut

One of my favorite things about traveling is catching up on reading. I always read on airplanes, at least for the first few minutes before I doze off. Even though I always have a book, I inevitably end up buying a magazine or two from an airport newsstand.

In the airport on the way to Denver yesterday I grabbed two options.

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I don’t know what it is but I just can’t resist the call of “Will and Kate’s Baby Heartbreak” or “Angie Catches Brad with the Nanny”. It’s all so scandalous and juicy.

On the way home from our honeymoon I read up on Pippa, who I think is adorable.

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When I’m at home I rarely, if ever, but magazines. What is it about flying that make trashy magazines so appealing? Maybe it’s just the age-old question of whether or not the stars are just like us…

ch – making ceviche

Even though we’re at an all-inclusive and have been stuffing our faces with fresh fruit, pad thai, ice cream and omelets every day, we managed to get some cooking in as well.  We spent Thursday afternoon at (yet another) sister resort, Beach Palace and it turns out this is the party Palace.  While we were sitting by the pool the action didn’t stop.  First there was a water aerobics class follwed by a performance by dancers from a local night club/theater then an “triathlon” basically designed for the spring break crowd but carried out by middle-aged hotel guests.  Finally, in the afternoon, there was an activity both Todd and I were excited to participate in (although I did try out some of the water aerobics moves) – a cooking demonstration!

The entertainment staff lined us up by the pool, gave us all aprons and set out all of the ingredients to make ceviche.

Lime, avocado, tomato, onion, cilantro, grouper and salt.  Simple enough.  The chef then walked us through the steps.

Mix fish, tomato, cilantro and onion together, got it.  Squeeze one lime wedge over the mixture, taste and add juice of lime if desired, no need to taste, in goes the second lime.  Add salt, done.  Scoop out avocado, check.  Mix together lightly and voila – ceviche!

I must say, it was pretty good.  And I don’t even prefer fish but the grouper was really mild and mixed with the fresh veggies and tortilla chips, it was a great snack.

Did I mention how awesome our aprons were?

It was just another fun, relaxing day in Cancun.

Have you every made ceviche at home?

Does eating uncooked fish bother you?

cancun honeymoon (day two)

You’re probably getting tired of my honeymoon gloating by now so I will be brief.

We spent yesterday at a sister resort, Cancun Palace.   As guests of the Sun Palace we have access to all of the Palace Resorts which is a fun perk.  Needless to say, the resort was gorgeous as well.

We really enjoyed the swim up bar and what may have been the world’s best mojitos.  I think that mojitos will be my cocktail of choice this summer.

I was also a big fan of the ice cream bar.  They had such interesting toppings available.  I went for green sprinkles, froot loops and a cookie on top, too make sure it was sweet enough.

Today we’re going to rent a car and visit Tulum, an archaeological site and go snorkeling.  It should be a fun day and I’m excited to see more of the area.

What’s your favorite cocktail?


cancun honeymoon (night one)

After a day of lounging in the sun, Todd and I had dinner at the resort‘s Asian restaurant.  Todd had sushi and I had pad thai, always a favorite, really the whole dinner was quite good.  The view overlooking the ocean wasn’t half bad either.

When we were done eating, we headed to the lobby to pick up some photos we had taken earlier in the day with a pair of macaws.  Today they had an iguana and I politely declined.  The birds were pretty cool though.  We have another picture with one of them on Todd’s head.  Good stuff.

The resort features one event or show every night and we rounded out our evening with a solid karaoke night.  I had so much fun singing along but still couldn’t muster the courage to actually karaoke.  My one attempt at “Whatta Man” has irreversibly squelched any desire I had to sing in front of a crowd of any size.  Leading the show was a Mexican Elvis – definitely a highlight.

In other, less noteworthy news, I really liked my outfit last night so I had Todd take a picture.  I’m really grooving on the glamour shots during this vacation!

Well, I have to get back to relaxing in paraiso.  Until later!

Do you karaoke?

What’s your favorite karaoke tune either to perform or to hear performed?

hola desde cancun!

So…we’re married!

After an amazing wedding day (more to come on that later, I promise) Todd and I woke up this morning as husband and wife.  What an amazing feeling.

We met up with family for a quick Mother’s Day brunch at the J.W. Marriott’s (the hotel we stayed at last night) restaurant, six.one.six which was delicious as always.

After that we went straight to the airport and after a delay, headed towards Cancun via Atlanta to start our honeymoon.  The first leg of our trip from Grand Rapids to Atlanta was first class.  It was my first time being in first class and let me tell you, I could get used to that.

First we got to board right away then they brought us wine before take off then wine again after departure.  THEN they brought us snacks.  Free snacks.  Not just peanuts and a few pretzels, I got a Twix bar.  Todd got red wine and Sun Chips.  It was awesome.

My white wine and Twix was the perfect snack to enjoy while catching up on all of the details of the royal wedding.

We had a short layover in Atlanta and enjoyed a treat at Ben and Jerry’s – last time I was at ATL it was Lent and I had to resist the Ben and Jerry’s, I was so glad to indulge this time!

The flights to Cancun wasn’t long and I slept most of the way.  Thankfully, I woke up in time to take in the first view of the coast of Mexico.

We arrived to our hotel only about 45 minutes after landing and it’s amazing.  We were greeted with cocktails and couldn’t be happier with our chice.  The resort is called the Sun Palace.  Our room is gorgeous and we can see the ocean from our balcony.

We quickly went to find a place for dinner and choose one of the resorts four restaurants.  It was called Steak but I ended up with a vegetarian selection.

After dinner we took a walk on the beach.  A lovely way to start a honeymoon.  I can’t wait to see what this place is like during the day!

Hello from Cancun!  This week is going to be amazing!

Where did you go or where would you like to go on your honeymoon?