family

MOH Diaries & #Pokemon20

This is my first official installment in my Maid of Honor Diaries series, since my cousin has officially asked me to be her MOH.   (She asked back when I was in Houston about a day after she got engaged, but I don’t blame her for being excited!)

This is my last official installment in my #Pokemon20 Mythical hunt.  I included getting Magearna in here too since the weekend vlog was so short!  We were busy seeing my cousin SLAY as Annie in Annie Jr.  I wish I had a clip of her singing, you guys!  The wouldn’t let us take photos or video… children’s theatre, man.

Vacation Vlogging

As you are reading this, I am up in the air en route to Las Vegas!  There will be vlog(s), so stay tuned to find out what I’m up to out there.  Until then, you can follow along on instagram or snapchat: nikkisee47!

To tide you over, I strung together the rest of my fourth of July footage for you:

 

Hope everyone is having a fun, relaxing summer!

MasterChef Junior: The Moon & The Sea

This title is not only relevant to the episode, but also my main interests in life… on to MasterChef Junior!

The Mystery Box comes with one big mystery box containing the judges in space suits.  Astronaut Tracy Dyson guests and impresses the heck out of both the children and me.  Since, as Tracy says, real astronauts know that the moon is made of cheese, the kids pull open their Mystery Boxes to see a bunch of different cheeses.  Their task is to make an out of this world cheese dish.  (Thank you, MCJ; so much better than marshmallows!)

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Addison, Kaitlyn, and JJ have the top dishes.

Kaitlyn wins!  Before her advantages are announced, the judges take it back to earth for the elimination test– they wheel out a bunch of fish.  To tie to moon to the sea, Graham shows the kids how to filet a fish using the GIANT moon fish.

Kaitlyn doesn’t have to cook and also gets to pick a peer to go through to the next round with her.  She chooses Addison.  Kaitlyn also gets to act as fish monger, tossing the chosen fishes to the kids about to cook.

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L to R, T to B: Avery, Jaeclyn, Derek, Vivian, Kya, Kyndall, Nate, Ian

Avery is so spunky.  Her decision making process for this dish seemed to be “my daddy likes it,” and that was just too cute.  Jaecelyn didn’t taste her fish because she doesn’t like it.  Derek is praised for having the best palate in the MCJ kitchen.  Vivian’s sauce doesn’t go with fish.  Kya is the cutest thing and my current favorite.  Kyndall’s veggies are uncooked.  Nate impresses with Asian flavors despite the fact that he’s “not really Asian.”  Too cute.  Ian’s dish goes well despite not needing the potatoes, but MAN this kid makes me nervous in the kitchen.  I’m not sure about his skills.

Nate is the winner!

Jaeclyn, Vivian, and Kyndall are called out for bottom dishes.  Jaeclyn is sent back to cook another day.  Vivian and Kyndall go home.

We’ve still got 18 kids in the kitchen and some still have a way to go to distinguish themselves.  Anyone sticking out in the pack to you?  I’m loving Kya and Sam!

MasterChef Junior: Aww Shucks!

Last week’s MasterChef Junior started with a challenge between Addison, Sam, and Jesse– the best dishes from the previous week.  Before them, 60 cupcakes.  Their task: to frost as many as possible.  In true, fun MasterChef Junior fashion, giant icing bags sit perched over the heads of the judges.

Addison frosts vanilla cupcakes to save Gordon from the vanilla frosting; Sam frosts chocolate cupcakes to save Graham from chocolate frosting; Jesse frosts pink cupcakes to save Christina from strawberry frosting.  The best part is there’s an adorable guest judge!  It’s my favorite MasterChef Junior title holder, Logan!

  • Logan counts up their perfectly frosted cupcakes.  Addison only has 10, thus Gordon is frosted first.
  • With 11, Jesse didn’t do much better.  I feel like frosting Christina is her true welcome to MasterChef Junior: this is a different show, Christina!
  • Sam gets 29 and saves Graham.  It’s worth mentioning, if Gordon were saved, the frosting still would’ve poured… either Gordon Ramsay is a really good sport or someone has decided it’s more enjoyable to watch him take all the punishment.  Still, the kids yell out frosting fight! so Graham can get a little messy.  Logan carts out buckets of sprinkles to complete the picture.

After a quick-change, it’s on to the main challenge.  Gordon demonstrates how to shuck live scallops.  Do these kids even know how lucky they are?  I’d like to try my hand at shucking one of these now.  The kids must shuck their own scallops and make a dish with them as the star ingredient.

Someone commented last week that the skill level of this crop of kids seems lower than previous seasons.  I agree on the two eliminated last week, and I agree on one account still in the MCJ kitchen.  “Ian is really feeling the pressure,” says Christina and Ian literally balls his eyes out in the kitchen.  I know this isn’t fair for me to say because he’s 8-years-old, and I’d probably be crying too with near 20 years on him.  Kind soul Gordon comes and shucks the scallops for him.  He also shucks Annabelle’s who, in contrast, calmly mentions that she’s having a tough time opening them.  She’s tested later after burning her initial haul and apparently shucks and cooks new ones in <5 minutes.

Here’s what we see the kids produce:

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L to R, T to B: Tae-Ho, Nate, Chad, Ian, Vivian, Derek, Kamilly, Amaya, Annabelle

Tae-Ho is announced the clear winner!

The four bottom dishes are called up to the front: Chad, Vivian, Kamilly, and Annabelle.  Kamilly and Annabelle are asked to step forward, then are announced safe.  Poor Chad and already crying Annabelle get sent home.  Chad really breaks my heart– he said something like, “I’m only 9-years-old, but I’m really creative,” while he cooked.  He inspired me to go eat a meatball (thanks to Nonna’s visit) while I watched.  I just feel like both of these kids had more finesse than a certain someone… but it’s in the taste!

I always cry watching this show!

And I always can’t wait for more!

MasterChef Junior: Marshmallow Madness

MasterChef Junior is back and this girl couldn’t be happier!  If you’re new here, MasterChef Junior (or MCJ, as I like to abbreviate things) is a cooking competition show for 8 – 13 year olds who all put me to shame.

This season, it’s 24 new kids and one new judge.  This is Christina Tosi’s first season of MCJ, and it’s nice to see her soak in the novelty of the situation.  These kids are amazing little cooks, and now that I’m 4 seasons in, that initial shock and magic kind of wore off.  I now accept that there are 8-year-olds with more refined paletes than mine.  Seeing it through Christina’s eyes brought that back, though.

The other fun thing about MCJ is there are a lot of cute gimmicks for the kids and for the families watching.  For example, the kids had to batter a giant piñata of Gordon Ramsay’s head to get their aprons.  Graham calls it Lord of the Flies.  Still, we start off like any other season of MasterChef: with a Mystery Box Challenge!

This one is symbolic.  Inside the Mystery Box is a lone bun, which the kids correctly guess is for burgers.  The top three are:

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Avery, age 9 / Zac, age 12 / Kya, age 8

Kya wins becoming the first 8-year-old to win a Mystery Box Challenge.  Her advantage comes in the form of, of course, not having to cook.  She also gets to pick a friend to enjoy her treats (prepared by Christina) and also get a free pass into the next round.  She selects Vivian.  She does not have control of the elimination challenge ingredient, though.

Instead, she presents it… with a bang.  There’s a fake detonator and marshmallows rain upon the kids.  Gordon bellows the name of the ingredient, in case the kids can’t tell as the duck and cover.  Honestly, I hate marshmallows more than anything, but watching the scene was hilarious.

Out of 22 cooking kids, we only see these 8:

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R to L, T to B: Addison, Sam, Alexander, Kade, Jesse, Corey, Mia, Ian

I feel it bears repeating that I truly hate marshmallows more than anything, but some of these would even make me take a bite!  The judges award baseball cap/cupcake queen Addison, mohawk Sam, and Ramones tee Jesse the distinction of best dishes.

Alexander, Kade, and Ian are the bottom three.  Ian squeaks by to cook another day and out first two are sent packing.  Yes, it breaks my heart to see these kids go home every time.

I’m so excited to see what these kids can do with real ingredients!  And we have a lot of kids to get to know still!  Who’s watching?!  Who else loves this show?!

May by Day

Since June is barely even days away, it’s time to share my May instagrams!

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[1] I can’t believe how different the weather was in the beginning of the month!  At least I got to debut my Banana Republic dachshund sweater. [2] My youngest cousin made her First Communion!  Here’s my family all dressed up. [3] I bought my first ever pair of Jacks!  They’re Nicole, platinum & gold. [4] I did a 5k walk for my cousin’s company through Forest Hills Cemetery, which was spellbindingly beautiful! [5] Selfies were taken in my signature camo jacket. [6] My ModCloth jewelry arrived!  Did you guess right? [7] Memorial Day weekend brought my triumphant return to the Ocean State!  Here are some Rhode Island things. [8] The beach house got all dressed up for a new season. [9] And I even got started on my tan!

Hope you’re all having a great weekend!

What summer fun do you have planned for June?!