Saturday, December 26, 2009


A Year In Review
2009 was a year of new challenges for the Hargises. In January, we relocated to Langley AFB, VA and the wonderful little town of Poquoson. I am relatively certain that I did not send out change of address cards, so if you don't have our new address, shoot me an email and let me know.

February brought us semi short notice deployment for Dennis. We had been given a heads up that he was being considered for the job before we left Tucson, but nothing was really finalized until early February. He left on February 18th for a 6 month tour as the Exec to the Air Component Commander, Multi-National Force Iraq. It was definitely a different experience from his last deployment, but he was able to learn so much while there.

The girls and I spent our time apart getting to know our new community. We have been blessed to make lots of new friends and the girls settled in to their new schools pretty well, considering this was their first time changing schools. Paige jumped right back in to soccer here and had a great first season and Summer got involved in the local Daisy Scouts troop. I decided to take a hiatus from volunteering and just settle in and be Mom for a while.

The majority of our summer was spent by the pool. We took a few small day trips to the beach, the Virginia Zoo, the Norfolk Botanical Gardens, and the Virginia Aquarium. We were especially blessed to be able to spend Independence Day on one of the very battlefields where that independence was won
August brought Dennis home with it. We were so happy to be reunited and the girls and I had so much fun showing him all the places we had discovered while he was away. There are no pictures from his homecoming, unfortunately, because I forgot the camera in the hotel. Really? How often does an international flight arrive 1 ½ hours early? We almost didn’t even make it to Baltimore in time to see him get off the plane!

September was a busy month. Paige started the 4th grade and Summer the 1st. Both girls decided to give cheerleading a try. Summer LOVED it and can’t wait for next season. Paige decided that soccer was really more her thing. Fall came to Virginia in late September. This is the first time that the girls have really seen the changing colors and all the splendor they bring with them and the first time in a long time that Dennis and I have seen them. I had forgotten how truly magical a time fall is.

And speaking of magic, September also meant a family trip to the most magical place on earth – Disney World! We spent 5 days with Mickey and his friends and brought back so many treasured memories. On the way home from Disney World we made a little side trip and got to spend a couple of days with one of our favorite families – The McClintocks!

The rest of fall passed in a whirl of Saturday morning football games, PTO meetings, college football, and great friends. Dennis got settled in to his new job with ACC Stand Eval and has made trips to the Hamptons, Moody AFB, and back to Tucson as a part of it.
I’ve talked a lot about all the wonderful things that Dennis and the girls have done over the past year and some of you may be wondering where I have been. LOL. It’s been a quiet year for me and I have been right where I want to be – up in the stands cheering on my girls, popping in to Dennis’ office with a cup of coffee on my way home from the Commissary, and just taking care of my crazy wonderful family. As Christmas time is upon us and another year is coming to an end, that is what I am most thankful for. Merry Christmas to you and yours and may God bless each and every one of you.

All our love,
Dennis, Sarah, Paige, and Summer

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Goodies

I have had lots of Facebook requests for the recipes of all my Christmas goodies I have been making. Here are a few of them. I will be adding more as I make more goodies.
White Chocolate Peppermint Bark
This isn't really a recipe. I used two packages of white chocolate bark and melted it down in the microwave according to the package directions. While that melted, I took two of the large candy canes and put them in a gallon size Ziploc bag and crushed them with a hammer. I mixed the crushed peppermint into the melted chocolate and then poured it out onto a piece of wax paper to solidify. Once it cooled I broke it into pieces. That's all there is to it!

Candied Walnuts
1 1/2 cups walnuts
1/2 cup sugar
2T butter
1/2 t. vanilla
1. Line a baking sheet with foil. Butter the foil; set baking sheet aside.
2. In a heavy skillet, combine the nuts, sugar, butter, and vanilla. Cook over medium-high heat, shaking skillet occasionally, until sugar begins to melt. Do not stir.
3. Reduce heat to low; continue cooking until sugar is golden brown, stirring occasionally. Remove skillet from heat. Pour the nut mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Cool completely. Break into clusters.

Sugar and Spice Pecans
1T egg white
2 cups pecans
1/4 cup sugar
1T pumpin pie spice
1. Heat oven to 300. Place nuts in a small bowl; pour the egg white over the nuts and stir until the nuts are coated and sticky.
2. Mix the sugar and pumpkin pie spice; sprinkle over the nuts, stirring until the sugar mixture completely coats the nuts. Spread on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes.

Christmas Tree Spritz Cookies
1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 t. salt
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
Green food coloring
Heat the oven to 400. Cream butter and sugar. Blend in remaining ingredients. Fill cookie press with the Christmas tree attachment and press the dough through onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 6-9 minutes until the dough is set, but not brown.