Friday, December 28, 2012

...And we have HEAT!

We have been so busy I promise I'll do a little re-cap of the holidays over the weekend...however I thought it calls for a bit of a celebration because as of yesterday, our heat finally works again!

 Praise Jesus!

We have had quite the time with trying to figure out what was wrong with it for the past month....first the thermostat stopped working so it took us about a week to go get a new one and replace it (the weather wasn't cold enough yet so we weren't rushing), then we get the new, fun, energy-saving thermostat installed and......the heat doesn't work.  It just never turned back on.  The thermostat was installed correctly, by yours truly and the best hubby in the world, but that was about where our HVAC skills ended.  So, my life has been full of bundling up in about 20 five layers, plus blankets while at home.  Jake was of course loving it because he is abnormally hot-natured.  So what was the cause?  Well, about a month ago when I asked my adoring husband to get the Christmas decorations out of the attic, he must have accidentally hit some switches and turned off the heat pump.  The thermostat breaking was just a coincidence of having a 10 year old house with a cheap builder-grade thermostat.  However, I am looking forward to seeing if the whole "energy saving" piece of this new one works.  We have it programmed to certain temperature settings for during the week and on the weekends.  It says it can save you up to 30% of your bill.  We shall see.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Santa's Cure Hot Chocolate

I was trying to come up with ideas for co-worker Christmas gifts this year and stumbled upon this for inspiration:

hot chocolate with marshmallows and Baileys
SANTA'S CURE:  Mason Jars of Hot Cocoa, Mini Marshmellows, and a mini bottle of Bailey's Original Crème.

So after brainstorming and getting my supplies, here's the final product:

I added some Christmas fabric to the mason jar lid, got some clear cellophane paper with holly leaves printed on it, and put everything in an oversized ceramic mug.  I also got Bailey's Caramel Crème instead to add some more flavor.

Here's a picture without the mug.  I also used some of the cellophane paper to wrap the mini marshmellows, so that it could be separated and scooped easier. 

Super cute and affordable; perfect for co-workers, neighbors, hostess gifts, etc!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Year & a Half...

Earlier this evening I realized that today marks exactly a year and a half that Jake and I have been married.  It's crazy how time flies.  I love this man with my whole heart.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Weekend Happenings

We went to Jeremy & April's 2nd Annual Tacky Christmas Sweater Party last night and had a blast...great fun with great friends!
Sad that this turned out a little too blurry to use on the Christmas card :(

The studs

 And today I've been in an organizing/decorating mood so lots of laundry has been done and I decided to change up the draperies in the living room.  While picking up some gifts for our Angel Tree child, I found these at TJMaxx for only $19.99..I thought that was a great deal for the set of two panels.  I love that they are linen, so they add texture but they're going to let lots of natural light in.  The pictures make them seem a little blah, but they are beautiful in person.  They have a silver threading going throughout them so they pick up on the lights, and I can only imagine the effect that they'll have when the sun shines through.  Yay :)

Please ignore the bag from Michael's...those are the Stockings that will be the next project.  Just have to find some stocking holders first.
I gathered them with a brown ribbon that I had a scrap of at the house.  It helps to give some contrast to the wall color.

That's all for now.  Hope you all had a good weekend!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Keepsake Ornaments

I found the idea to make keepsake ornaments with wedding items, and so tonight I stopped by Michael's on my way home to pick up some clear ornaments and ribbon.  I found some with a silver swirl, and since they're for wedding items I thought that was a cute little extra jazz to make them sparkle :)  Here are the pictures of the final products:

My Bridal Shower Invitation

Our Rehearsal Dinner Invitation
Our Wedding Invitation and the Ribbon that was wrapped around it.

A letter of Welcome from our Honeymoon Resort...The first item written to us as a married couple :)

I love the way that they turned out.  If you want to make something similar, here is a tutorial that is most like what I did: Ornament Tutorial

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

These are the special times, the times we'll remember...

Probably my absolute favorite Christmas song...Girl's got issues but you can't deny her voice.  Celine Dion sang the original but I love this version. 

Speaking of special times, I just need to take a minute to say that I am really loving this time in our lives.  People always say that high school was the glory days, or college was the best time of your life.  I have to disagree.  I am loving this new stage of life, shall I call it the "Wedding and Baby Boom".  That time when you've graduated college and all of a sudden everyone you know is gettin' hitched and having babies.  Let me clarify very quickly that we are not but I have been helping a few friends with wedding planning and gotten some save the dates in the mail, Jake's cousin and one of my best friends are both due with their second children very soon, and also finding out earlier this week that two of my very best friends from high school are pregnant with their first child!  I feel like I am surrounded by so many fun and exciting events for people that I know and love, and how could that not be the best time of your life?  Even with buying cars and houses, there are so many of those "leaps of faith" and jumping into big decisions.  We used to look so forward to Spring Break and those crazy weeks at the beach, now we're planning anniversary trips and summer vacations that are not even comparable to a week in the Dirty Myrtle.  As we are getting so close to the end of 2012, I am eagerly looking forward to the 4 weddings, countless showers, and sweet little babies of 2013 :)


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Door Decor

Here's a picture of our new winter wreath:

It's a little bit hard to tell but the ribbon is a sheer light green to match the W color.  I already had the wreath and ribbon, and the wooden snowflake and "W" only cost $5 at Michael's :)

I put up some of the other porch decorations last night but I haven't been able to get a good picture of them yet.

Tis the Season!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

We put our tree up last weekend and today I finally made my bow for the topper...I went to the after Christmas sales last year and bought a pretty star topper but our new pre-lit tree is too tall to use it :( so that went back into the decoration box for use in the future.  I figured a bow would look cute and I found some awesome ribbon at Hobby Lobby.

The Christmas ribbon was on sale 50% off at Hobby Lobby so I got a 30ft roll of 3" wide ribbon for only $4.99!  I already had some craft wire at home...and, voila!

I used the entire roll of ribbon and I think it came out a great size.  I might try to get more ribbon and put some bows like this on our trees outside of the dining room window.  Here is the tutorial that I followed:  Bow Tutorial

I was surprised at how quick and easy it was.  It's great to know how to do it because they charge you $10 plus the price of the ribbon at a lot of places to have one made.  

Next step:  outdoor decorations!

Well, our bulldogs lost yesterday but what a game!  I'm just so proud that they actually showed up and that was one heck of a game to watch.  We had a bunch of friends over to watch it and had a great time with lots of great food.  It was quite the little spread, this picture is from before a few more trays of sweets:

The crock pots were Buffalo Chicken Dip and Velveeta Sausage dip.  Yum!


Friday, November 30, 2012

Back to December...

Yes, that was a T.Swift reference!

DECEMBER, can you believe it?! Where has the time gone?  This year has seriously flown by.  I am excited for the holidays and for everything that we have to look forward to next year, but is this really how time moves when you're an adult?  I've always heard people say that the older you are the quicker time goes, but if this is the rate it's moving at in my twenties then I have no idea how it will speed up!

Looking forward to going here tomorrow morning with my Momma!  A Christmas tradition that we have had for the past few years and one that I'm very happy to continue :)

and after that....

Let's just say that there will be a pretty intense viewing of this at our house tomorrow at 4pm...Stop by for some entertainment and yummy food!
alabama vs georgia notre dame
Davis Jaye, the creator of this cartoon, had these words to say:

“I think that, right now, expecting a non-SEC team to win the National Championship is like expecting the sun to start rising somewhere other than the East. It’s probably not going to happen.”
“The SEC teams want to kill each other during the regular season, but when it comes to Bowl Games, they rally around each other like no other conference.”
Go Dawgs! 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Holiday Season

Sooo we were a bit busy over weekend.  Looks like the Thankful list will be continued this week until the end of the month....

12.  Our home, and how blessed we were to be able to make this big purchase on our own.  I can't believe it's already been two years almost!

13.  Our vehicles, especially my car.  Being the youngest in my family I was always the one who got my brother's old car or my dad's old car.  Now, I know it is a blessing in itself that I was given those vehicles since I know that there are many others who are not that lucky or who's parents made them save up to pay for their first car.  However, there is something special about being able to save up my big girl money and buy my first shiny new car with exactly the finishes and features that I wanted.  And, after 9 years I'm finally driving something other than a white SUV!!

14.  Alpha Delta Pi.  Six years ago I had no idea the lasting impact that organization and women would have on my life.  I'm no longer a collegiate member and often times in my daily routine I don't really take the time to reflect on it.  I put on my crest ring every morning, and I'll think of my sisters and what they're doing with their lives now when I get phone calls, texts, or see updates on facebook.  What's amazing about it is when it pops up in unexpected places.  I couldn't even count the times that I've been at business meetings or networking events and find out that another woman there is an alum as well.

15.  Pinterest, for making me seem like such a fantastic and creative cook and hostess.  Also, thanks Pinterest for making private boards so that I can keep my bouts of baby fever to myself! haha

...In other news, I've been decking the halls here for the holidays and I've been inspired to do some organizing of our bookshelves in the living room.  Hopefully pictures to come soon of the holiday decor, etc!

Monday, November 19, 2012


Early on in college one of my sorority sisters introduced me to Storypeople.  They are little quotes or philosophies on different topics, accompanied by little eccentric sketches.  I stumbled across this one today and it has always been one of my favorites...

Open large picture


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Very Thankful


I apologize for being such a slacker with my blog lately.  I feel like this year is flying by before my very eyes and it seems like the time to get on here can never be found.  But alas, I thought I would get into the spirit of Thanksgiving week and join in on the Thankful posts. The daily thing on facebook is a bit much for me but I thought I would compile my list here.  I'll tackle a few a day throughout the week..

Sometimes we get so complacent throughout the year and around the holidays it really gives us time to sit down and think about all of the wonderful people and experiences that we have in our lives. Sitting here thinking about everything now honestly just puts a smile on my face because I do feel so blessed and happy...People always say that they don't want to get older but I am having the best time with this phase in my life.  I feel like for myself and my friends...we've all made it to that point where we are settled into our adulthood.  We're not the "fresh out of college" group anymore.  We've settled into our careers and our routines, we're getting established and promoted.  We've bought houses and cars; taken big vacations that we've actually paid for.  We've had real life struggles and slowly but surely made it through.  We've "paid our dues" and are now on the upside.  It makes me so proud to see the growth and success.  Will we have more hard times, undoubtedly!  But we've proven that we have what it takes.  Two weeks ago Winthrop had it's homecoming basketball game and a bunch of my college friends came into town for our annual girls weekend.  I love that we have that one weekend a year that we know we can count on to get all of our schedules aligned and get together.  It was our first year having our own alumni tailgate.  We learned about a few things that we will change for next year but it was definitely a great decision and we really enjoyed it.  Now, if only Winthrop's basketball team would get back to the greatness of our Freshman and Sophomore years at Winthrop!   It was so funny to see how much things have changed, but how happy we are with that.  Looking at the groups of friends and WU Alumni who are in their 30's, all meeting up with their little kids and tailgating...realizing that in what seems like a few short years that will be us.  It doesn't make me scared for the future, it makes me excited for it! 

So I guess with all of that in mind, here's my list...

1.  I am thankful for Jake.  I am thankful for who he is as a person and who he is as a partner.   I am thankful for the way that he balances me and the way that we work together.  I'm thankful for our differences and our similarities.  While we both thought that we were headed down different paths in life, I'm so thankful for God's greater plan helping us find our way to each other.  I'm sure that you are thinking "Duh" right now, but it's a feeling of thankfulness that I never knew existed until we got married.  While we were dating of course I was thankful and felt so lucky to have found someone who I thought was so perfect for me, but after getting married small things just started adding up and made me find this whole new level of appreciation.  Even though we had been together for almost five years by the time we got married, and even though we were already living together, there is something that changes.  I guess it's because "forever" actually becomes reality and for the first time that actually sinks in.    

2.  I'm thankful for my big family.  The one that I was born into and the one that I married into.  As a kid I remember doing a project in school where we were writing down the number of siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. in our families.  My Mom has a big Italian Catholic family and my Dad was adopted, and later in life he found his birth parents so that makes for a huge family.  I remember writing down that I have over 20 first cousins, and how some of the kids in my class only had one or two, or none at all.  While it can get crazy trying to coordinate schedules, especially around the holidays, I can't imgaine not having a house full of people celebrating together.  

3.  and 4.  Reece and Kona.  You just do not even understand how much I love my furbabies.  They are my first and second children, they are spoiled rotten, and I would not have it any other way.  While I know dogs are nothing like real children, they have definitely helped prepare us for our future little ones by giving us responsibility and letting us know that the world does not operate on our own personal schedules. 

5.  Friendships.  Old and new.  I've always been the "social butterfly" as my parents called it.  Maybe it comes from moving a few times growing up or maybe that's just me.  Yes, I was one of those crazy people who had a ton of bridesmaids in my wedding.  I've never been the type of person who had only one best friend.  Each one of my friends "gets me" in a different but completely perfect way and I'm so grateful that I have those people who know everything I want to say with just a look.

6.  Our church.  After buying our house we found Allison Creek Presbyterian Church and it could not be a more perfect fit for us.  I've never felt more welcome or at home in a church, and Jake and I laugh about it because honestly we are probably the youngest couple in the small congregation by about 10 years, with the exception of one or two others.  

7.  Art.  For my ability to do it and for the way that it allows me to express myself and connect with people.

8.  Our country and our military.  For freedom, pride, and patriotism.

9.  Education and teachers.  Especially for the teachers who have had a great impact on my life, encouraged me and inspired me. 

10.  My job.  For doing something that I enjoy with co-workers that are fun to be around.  I definitely learned through previous jobs that this is not always the case and it is such a blessing when you find it!

11.  The medical field.  For the advances that it has made and for the talented doctors working towards cures for cancers and diseases.  For the technology that they have developed that makes things like my Lasik surgery possible :)

....that's all for now, more to come!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


 I got my LASIK surgery!  It has been a pretty easy recovery, but I am also following all of the rules closely.  The surgery was done this past Friday, November 2nd at TLC in Charlotte.

They are right beside Southpark Mall in Charlotte.  It has been such a dream.  Because my eyes are still healing, it hasn't quite hit me that I will never have to wear contacts or prescription glasses again!  I sort of feel like I am still wearing contacts.  I cannot say enough that if you are considering having this surgery done or want to learn more about it, contact TLC.  They are more amazing than words can truly say.  Knowledgeable, helpful, kind, reassuring, professional, and the list goes on!  I don't want to post any details about it on here that may make some people queasy, but if you want to know more about it just ask me!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Tuesday Musings

Today has been an odd say so far.  Started out with me waking up at 6am to get ready for a weekly  networking group that I'm a part of in Charlotte.  Well, I don't think my body has gotten used to 6am yet.  I, in my grand stupidity, did not realize I still had some facewash astringent on my fingers and put in my contact lens.  NO BUENO.  Immediately started burning like crazy, and after a couple seconds when I could actually open my eye I got the contact out.  However, not quick enough.  I can see normal, I could tell that something wasn't right because it kept burning even after I flushed it with tons of water so I called the emergency line at my eye doctor and got them to fit me in first thing.  I went over there and got to see Dr. Oliver at 8:30am.  He told me that it was a chemical burn from the alcohol in the astringent.  He gave me numbing drops and then flushed my eye with tons of saline solution so that all (if any) alcohol was still in my eye it was gone.  Now I've got prescription eye drops to take for the next 5 days.  He said the eyes heal so quickly that it will probably be all healed up by Thursday or Friday.  The good news is that it does not affect my schedule for Lasik surgery.  So, $100 later, the lesson is always remember to thoroughly wash your hands after dealing with any type of alcohol based product!!

Aside from that, I came across this today and thought it was good to share... 

The pink ribbon in the image above reminds me that October is breast cancer awareness month.  I was also prompted at the cash register today when picking up my prescription if I would like to donate to breast cancer research, and I could pick my dollar amount.  I can never say no when prompted with something like that.  Does that make me a sucker or just someone with a philanthropical heart?  A sales rep came into work today and told us about how his wife has been diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.  It was caught in her liver during blood work, and when they did further tests on her body they found it in her lymphnodes, bladder, lungs, liver, and her colon.  They have two children, a daughter in college at NC State and a 15 year old son.  It was so sad to hear him talk about having to explain to his son that not only did his mother have cancer, that she was going to die and that that was okay because she wouldn't be hurting anymore.  I am so thankful that I've never had to go through something like that with someone who is close to me.  I know that we all probably have to experience it at some point, but I'm okay with waiting.

For anyone who just likes good blogs, here is one that you can read with lots of different topics:
This is the sister of a girl who is in one of our networking groups.  She has been dealing with her own cancer struggles and I stumbled upon her blog one day and was fascinated.  I literally read it all night.  It is so touching that someone going through such a scary and troubling experience would be able to focus on the positive so much, and still think of ways to help others.  She's very creative and her blog/website is a collection of craft tutorials, recipes, stories, etc with a whole lot of inspiration and sharing of her story mixed in. 

I think that's all for now...I'm getting ready for dinner and watching the Presidential debate/The Voice/Sons of Anarchy!


Monday, October 15, 2012

Comfy & Cozy

Sooo excited to get this in the mail...


I have a Groupon credit because my parent's weren't able to go out on the Whale-watching trip that I bought for them while they were on their anniversary trip due to inclement weather conditions.  The company wouldn't let any of their boats go out if it was calling for rain.  So, I contacted Groupon afterwards and they credited that amount back onto my account.  Well, I saw this little piece of heaven today and just ordered it!  Usually the mattress pad is around $80, but the Groupon gets you 52%off and my credit covered the cost, even with shipping and sales tax.  Yay!

Want one too? Here is the link...

They have some good deals on Groupon right now.  There's even one for Acuvue contact lenses for anyone who may need them!  Tomorrow is my last day wearing contacts before I have to switch over to my glasses for two weeks :\  Blahhh but it's part of the Lasik process and it will be worth it in the end!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Newest Project

Ohhh my list of many projects and crafty things to accomplish.  I constantly find new ideas.

Well, one of those ideas that I've had for a long time is to make a t-shirt quilt out of mine and Jake's ADPi & Kappa Sigma shirts.  1) It will keep me warm because Jake likes to keep our house at near-freezing temperatures--something is seriously not normal about his internal body temp.  2) It will bring back fun memories everytime we see it.  and mainly 3) At least one of our future children is bound to get into Greek life and it will make an amazing pass-down for them!  So, originally I had wanted to send it off to get done, but they are SOOOOO pricy.  And I mean ridiculously.  So, being possibly overly ambitious, I am going to take it on myself.  I need to get some good use out of my sewing machine anyway, right?  Here's the inspiration [side note: mine will look way cuter :) The colors on this are a bit much for me]:

Pinned Image 
tshirt quilt

I went with Shanti and Karen to Mary Jo's fabric store in Gastonia yesterday and got some good background and border fabric. Pictures to come! Although those pictures may take a while...

 I had a fun weekend!  Experienced the Long Branch for the first time and was pleasantly surprised.  Although, I do feel like I need to learn how to line dance if I'm going to go back haha.  The "regulars" as I shall call them were quite intense.  I had no idea there were so many different line dances!

Then, last night I made dinner and then we went over to April & Jeremy's for the LSU v. S.Carolina game.  It was a lot of fun and I do have to say, South Carolina's team is fierce this year.  Even though it was a loss for them, they are still pretty impressive.  [Sorry Jake--let me insert my "GO DAWGS!" here]

Today, church and Sunday school...Jake and I are teaching the Preschool class again this year and the kids are so much fun.  We have our curriculum book that we use, but I also found a really cute Pumpkin Prayer Book that I printed out and let each of them color.  It goes through each step of the pumpkin carving process, and with each step it relates it back to God and has a little prayer.  At the end it compares the candle that you place inside the pumpkin to the light of God in each of us.

Also, Eden gets to try on wedding dresses today!!! Can't wait to see her in them and get to see cute little Ryder :)  I can't believe how big he is getting...almost a year old!


Monday, October 1, 2012


Oh, October.... <3

The prettiest month of the year, in my opinion, and a month of such fun things! What's coming up this month for us?
 -My Daddy's 50th birthday (tomorrow)-
 -6 years together (10/13)-
 -My birthday (10/20)- 
-Halloween fun- 
-Pretty leaves- 
-Football and football tailgates-
-Haunted houses-
-Spice-scented candles- 
-Caramel Apples-
-Apple Cider-
-Friend's birthdays-
...and at the end of the month, my LASIK eye surgery consultation!  I'm a little bit nervous but so excited for how much it could impact my everyday routine.  Little things that people don't even think of, like having to search for my glasses before I take the dogs downstairs to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, or not being able to snuggle while watching a movie at night because I don't want to fall asleep in my contacts and don't want to bend/break my glasses.  Being able to open my eyes under water at the pool or the lake because I won't need to worry about losing a contact lens.  It will probably make me get ready at least 10 minutes quicker because I will be able to actually see what I'm doing.  I can only image how helpful it would be once we have kids and I'm waking up at all hours of the night and needing to get ready quickly in the mornings.  Not to mention all of the money it will save over time, since I won't be shelling out $350 a year on contacts and saline solution for the rest of my life.  As long as the consult goes well, my surgery should be the morning of November 2nd at TLC in Charlotte!!
And in closing, here are some shots from the boat this weekend...We went out with my friends Karen and Shanti, and Shanti's family.  Their little girl Reina is seriously the cutest ever:
cool view

The boys relaxing
me & Reina

driving the boat
see if she likes the water...
loving the water & her buddy Jake

just before sunset Friday evening
More trips to come!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

I'm on a boat...

Haha remember that stupid song?  Well we are not on a boat this weekend, but if weather permits we will be next Sunday!  We kind of had a great deal for a used, fully updated pontoon boat fall into our laps, and Jake really didn't want to pass it up.  We are supposed to be picking it up this week so I'm anxious to see it because I don't even know what it looks like.  Jake saw pictures and then we had his stepdad go check it out because he is very mechanically savvy when it comes to cars and boats, and just about anything with a motor.

We will hopefully get in some good Sunday afternoons or evening cruises before the weather gets too cold...then we will just be counting down the days for warm weather again and spending muchore time out there next summer.

Pictures to come!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Apple Cider, Caramel....YUM

So, my phone case came in and I love it!  The prettiest shade of turquoise.  I wasn't sure if the picture was going to be the same as in person, but it was.  I'm thinking about getting a monogrammed sticker to put on the back of it, but I'm not sure if it would stick well to the rubberized texture of the case--anyone tried that before?  Believe it or not, the only thing I got after our wedding with my monogram on it was a purse that was a gift from my parents, but since I tend to wear out purses that one is no longer around :(  I need to get some more stuff!  I have really been wanting a small monogrammed gold pendant necklace, but finding one with a monogram as small as I want is proving hard (or at least, without paying out the wazoo for it).

My parents are up in Cape Cod on their anniversary trip this week and seem to be having the best time!  They have been texting me pictures and it looks like such a beautiful place.  They woke up early at the B&B to get on the morning ferry and they are spending the day on Martha's Vineyard today.  I will try to load some pictures and post on here.

I had a really fun weekend...I went to a Bridal show in Columbia with my friend Eden.  It was a lot of fun! I never went to any when Jake and I were engaged.  It was neat to see all the different vendors and all of the raffles/contests, etc.  We registered for a ton of free things so hopefully Eden will get a call this week that she won something!  They were giving away everything from $200 gift cards to full honeymoons. 

Before that, on Friday night I went over to my friend Shanti's and we baked some cookies and snacks for a girl's night in with our interior design friends on Saturday.  The cookies we baked were called Apple Cider Caramel Cookies and boy were they good!!  I love anything involving cider, and these were so easy to make too!  I thought I would share the recipe so that yall can try it out too...


1 cup unsalted butter, nearly melted
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (7.4 ounce) box Alpine Spiced Apple Cider Instant Original Drink Mix *Not sugar free*
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 (14 ounce) bag Kraft Caramels


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. It has to be parchment this time.

2. In a stand mixer, cream together butter, sugar, salt, and all 10 packets of apple cider mix until smooth and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract, then mix in the baking soda and baking powder. Add the flour and mix until just combined.

3. With a standard (size 50) cookie scoop, scoop the dough scrapping off the excess as you go up the bowl. Flatten the dough slightly in your hand and place a caramel in the center. Work the dough around the caramel sealing well. Place the cookies two inches apart on the sheets.

4. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown around the edges. After baking, carefully slide the parchment with the cookies onto the counter. Let cool until they are no longer soft but still slightly warm. Twist gently to remove, and cool the rest of the way upside down on the parchment or on a cooling rack.
Seriously, amazing.  I ate like a fatty king on Saturday because before Girl's Night I went up to the Yiasou Greek Festival with Iris and got a gyro & the American version of a  greek salad.  ALWAYS a winner in my book.  
That's all for now.  My hubby is finally back in town from his working out of town and softball tournament this past weekend (They got 5th overall :/ ) so we can finally relax and enjoy each other!!  The doggies and I have missed him a bunch...although Kona has been loving sleeping up on our bed:)  He was mad at Jake last night because he wasn't allowed up, haha.  

Sunday, September 9, 2012


Yay I got a phone upgrade yesterday!  I didn't have too many complaints about my old phone other than that I was ready for a change and I hated the battery life.  I decided to upgrade to the newer version, the HTC Evo 4g LTE.  Loving it...

TURQUOISE TPU Gel Rubber Skin Cover Case for HTC EVO 4G LTE (Sprint) [In Twisted Tech Retail Packaging]
I just ordered this Turquoise case for it. Hopefully it will arrive soon because this phone is much thinner and lighter than the old one, and I am paranoid of how fragile it might be.

Not much else going on....although I have been having lots of fun with my sewing machine!  I've been teaching myself and getting lots of help from my friend Shanti.  So far I've made a slightly rough wine tote and  a couple cute stuffed toys.  The wine tote had a weird tutorial and I think there are definitely some things I would change to make the finishing cleaner.  I'm planning to make a table runner to go with our fall table cloth in the dining room, and I found a really cute pattern that I want to use to make a Christmas quilt.  I'm a little nervous to start on the bigger projects though.  Browsing and shopping for fabrics is my new addiction.  Pictures to come!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Labor Day Weekend

Can't wait to be here Friday...

Gatlinburg Tennessee Area Real Estate
Gatlinburg, TN (if only the leaves were already changing <3 ...)

It will be so nice to have this little weekend trip with some close friends. We had originally planned on going to Atlanta for the Braves vs. Phillies series but had some last minute changes in plans.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Picture Updates

First, here is a picture of how the Strawberry Banana cake turned out for the women's supper last week.  It was so much fun, and all of the food was delicious!
Strawberry Cake, Cream Cheese frosting (my fav!) and strawberry & banana slices

HUGE thank you to my parents for coming up and helping make this remodel happen!  Friday night, Jake and I painted with the help of April & Jeremy who stopped by to hang out and help paint.  Jeremy also helped Jake move all of the furniture out and rip up the carpet earlier in the day.  Saturday my parents got up here in the morning, and after taking some time to figure out the plan of attack and making a couple trips to Home Depot, we got started and got a good bit done before dinner. 

((Side note:  We also picked up some lunch from Bat's BBQ on one of those trips to Home Depot.  The food was really good and pretty well priced!  I also didn't know that they are a Christian company.  They give all of their tips, and I think part of their profit, to a local religious organization.  I can't remember the name but I think it's a Catholic church or charity.  We got the Small Bat Pack which was a pound of pulled pork with 2 pint-sized sides, plus sauces, and we bought 4 rolls to make them sandwiches.  All for $22.00--not bad for 4 people!  If you don't like pork they also have chicken or sausage.))

Around dinner we took a break, my friend Iris met up with us and we all went over to the new Giordana Velodrome for the National Championships.  If you don't know what I'm talking about---at the new Rock Hill Riverwalk, there is a state-of-the-art Velodrome which is where Cyclists compete.  It was different but really cool!  I think it will be a great thing for Rock Hill to have.  It was free this weekend, I'm not sure if they will charge in the future or not.  After stopping by there for about 30-45 minutes we continued on to Baxter Village and had dinner at CloudNine, which is a tapas bar.  I bought a Groupon deal that they had recently.  Their food is AMAZING, and they have great drink specials.  I've eaten there three times now, and literally every single item on their menu is good.  Definitely try it if you have never been!  They also have outdoor seating, like most places in Baxter, and the weather was nice so we sat out there.  After about 30 minutes Beef O'Brady's had live music, which I think they do every Saturday. 

Then, back to work on the room on Sunday. The boys got things started while I was at church and then I helped finish the flooring and finishing touches once I got back.  It took until about 8pm Sunday night to have everything done.  Also, be on the lookout for an upcoming post to give you an idea of the budget for a remodel like this.  We all know that I'm into couponing and deals, and there were some great ones here!  I hate how shows like the remodeling ones on TLC and HGTV give people unrealistic ideas of budgets because they get things donated or discounted for TV.

Here are some pictures.  I didn't get to take any on my camera but these are some that Jake got Sunday night after it was all back in place...

This one shows the new color pretty well...a beautiful green chosen to match the stripe in the new draperies and floor rug.  I love that the name of it is "Sanctuary" calming :)  We still need to get artwork up on the walls.  The green walls you see here are actually the only 2 green walls in the room--we did these accent walls and left the rest of them tan.

The color of this one turned out really funky on Jake's phone, but it shows the new layout of our dressers.  Jake wanted to switch some things up so this was the compromise, but they actually fit together pretty well and I think I like it.  ((Yes, that is a water bowl on the floor.  Yes, I know they're spoiled.))

The new light above the peninsula in the kitchen.  I love it so much already!  It's so much brighter and better for when I'm prepping food or baking.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Color Schemes

I found a great website the other day for if you are looking for some color ideas and inspiration...

I love the images that they pair with the color palettes, too.  For our bedroom remodel, the color scheme is ending up as sort of a combination of these:

seedling color
bonsai color
 mixture of the warmth of the first scheme, with the teal of this second scheme. The green won't be that bright, I promise!  The colors were adapted a bit because I found a great floor rug this weekend at the TJ Maxx in northeast Columbia.  An 8x10 Mohawk rug for only $59.99!  That is at least $200 less than everywhere else I've looked.  We haven't unrolled it yet so we're hoping there are no pulls in the pile, but it should be good to go!  The rug is what has some teal and a little bit of a golden color mixed in, which weren't a part of the original plan but I think I like it.

A combination of these two sort of embodies my vision in the living room/kitchen.  We already have most of these colors, but I want to paint the back wall of the house a lighter shade of gray/teal/blue-ish (I can't remember the exact name from Behr) similar to the first color on this "wish tone" palette.
wish tones
cultured tones

It's maybe a bit of a stretch to understand or explain, but with the accent walls downstairs it gives me the feeling of being like an art gallery.  The colored walls give just enough of an accent to the rest of the items in the space to compliment without seeming too over-bearing.  The two things I am obsessed with in the living room and kitchen are the area rug in the living room (pic is from before we moved in so it's a little bare):

and our granite, which I realized I don't have a good picture of :\

...and these two things have a lot of the same color tones.  Because of that, painting the back wall of the house will join those two rooms and make it a nice transition. I'm sure that's just me and other people who come into our house just see accent walls, but it's comforting in a way to me. I think I also like it because with my artsy mind always coming up with new ideas, having just accent walls makes it easier to change or alter.

I am soooo looking forward to this weekend and getting some of these big & little projects completed.  I'll post pictures Sunday if I can get around to it. 

Tomorrow night is the women's Salad Supper for our church, and Shanti and I are going to head over there together once I get home from work.  It's a pot-luck, and we are supposed to bring either some type of salad or dessert.  I didn't want to run the risk of bringing a repeat dish, so I'm baking Strawberry-Banana Cake (strawberry cake, light cream cheese frosting, and fresh strawberries & banana slices on top) YUM :)