Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Our Christmas Tree Has Left The Building

We had quite the stressful afternoon!

Joe is on call tonight so he had the afternoon off. We went to lunch at Olive Garden (love the soup and salad lunch special!!) then we decided we had enough time and energy to get our HUGE (dead) Christmas tree out of the house. Joe said he was nervous about how we would get it out but I was confident that it would be easy because I had bought a Tree Removal Bag last year in the after Christmas sales. A bag! Made to wrap trees so you simply carry them right out of the house! What could be easier??

That, my friends, is foreshadowing.

I had bought this "tree removal bag" but let me tell you, it was about as thin as a contact lens and the branches poked right through it. So I decided to wrap a big blanket around the tree. We started dragging all eleven feet of it towards the front door (we had taken all the ornaments off yesterday).


I forgot the tree stand still had water in it.

So we dumped stinky, murky water all over our carpet. Huge puddle. Still holding the tree... now panicking!!!

We finally wedged it through the front door, into the yard and then on top of the car.

And we look like we were in a brawl with a couple of alley cats. And the cats won. We're scratched up everywhere!

I think from now on we will buy a small real Christmas tree and use all artificial for the rest of the house.

The good news: the tree is GONE! Ha!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Snowed In

This was a Christmas for the record books!

On Christmas Eve Joe and I drove to Kansas City in
Blizzard of 2009

I can't even remember the last time we had a white Christmas before this one.

Across our families ALL of our Christmas dinners were canceled and we holed up at Joe's parents and played games, ate lots of food and played in the snow like kids.

Yes, I made a snow angel!! haha!

Joe managed to blow some snow around (not that it did much good because it just kept falling!)

We finally made it to my parent's house to celebrate Christmas with them on Sunday.

And now that we're home I can't find the motivation to get our Christmas decorations down and put away.

When do you take your holiday stuff down? Do you wait until after New Years??

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Have Yourself...

Have yourself a merry little Christmas


I'll be home for Christmas

and I plan to

Let it snow

even if

Baby, it's cold outside

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I am: a quirky girl with lots of passion.

I think: I operate best when I don't really think things through.

I know: things always work out okay.

I have: friends and family who GET me. All I could ever want.

I wish: time would stop going so quickly the older I get.

I hate: that I have such a hard time being patient.

I miss: college.

I fear: that I'll never get a Master's Degree.

I hear: laughter.

I smell: the new perfume I got for Christmas: Salvatore Ferragamo Incanto. It's my new fav!

I crave: chocolate. Always chocolate. And coffee.

I search: for vintage dishes because I think it's so fun to imagine them being used by people of past decades.

I wonder: why people are so critical of each other.

I regret: not stopping to smell the roses more when I was in college.

I love: when I laugh harder at my own jokes than anyone else.

I ache: in my jaw. I'm getting my wisdom teeth out soon.

I am not: your ordinary engineer.

I believe: that there is a plan! Fate! Everything happens for a reason! Que sera sera!

I dance: in the shower (where most people sing!)

I sing: in the car. Mariah and I can reaaaally harmonize!

I cry: when I think about people who are hungry and sick.

I fight: the urge to stay in my PJs everyday.

I win: the lottery in my dreams!

I lose: in basketball. I'm so bad.

I never: go a day without kissing my dog on the nose.

I always: have my toenails painted when I wear sandals.

I confuse: the days of the week. It's the effect of my unusual schedule (traveling without a 9-5 schedule for work).

I listen: to my iPod when I clean the house. I mop to the beat! Ha!

I can usually be found: dreaming about traveling.

I need: my I Love Lucy DVDs.

I am happy about: life.

I imagine: in the next 3 years I'll be a mom.

Play along, won't you?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Santa Came Early

Tonight Joe and I celebrated our Christmas together. We are going to leave for our hometown on Thursday so we decided tonight we would do gifts and tomorrow we would do a movie night. It's always so stressful (but also fun!) being home for the holidays because there's so much pressure to share our time with both families so it will be nice to have a date before the madness! Ha!

So, I can finally spill the beans on the things I got for Joe for Christmas!

And Santa was good to me too!

And... drumroll... couples dance lessons!! I am so excited about this (what a great gift, right?) Joe is a good sport because he is VERY self conscious about his dancing ability but I've wanted to do this for a while. I'm so excited (will I make a fool of myself? Probably!!)
I know gifts are not what Christmas is about, but it's fun to post about. I am so excited to see our families, especially my niece and nephew!!

What's In Your Purse?

I saw this on another blog and decided to do a video! I think I have Mary Poppins's purse because there's a lot of stuff in there (that I didn't even realize!)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Social Calendar

Y'all, my social calendar has never been so full - I'm recovering from two parties last weekend. One was a fancy party at the banquet room at our Marriott here in town. It was hosted by the OB anesthesia group that works with the hospitals here. It was so funny because they hired a "mindreader" as entertainment. She had her husband there to go around the tables and have people show him their drivers license and she would stand on stage and guess their name. Too funny!

Tonight Joe is on all-night call. He had the afternoon off "pre-call" from 1-4pm so we met up for a lunch date at On The Border. I thought some mexican food sounded good on a cold Monday. I told Joe to close his eyes for a minute and try to pretend we were in Mexico! Ha!

You'll never guess what I'm doing tonight. I have a date with our scanner. As a Christmas gift for my in-laws we're scanning in old family pictures to an external hard drive for them. That way they have everything digitally instead of in old boxes in the basement. I had no idea how time consuming it would be!!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Holiday Parties - Looking Good on a Budget!

Tis the season for the holiday party! We have four Christmas parties for Joe's work alone (each of the anesthesia groups has their own party) so I've been thinking about how to look nice at each one without breaking the bank...

1. Get a little black dress. Or little gray dress. Something you could wear to several parties but also use at church, recitals for the kids, etc. I like this Calvin Klein number and this from Target.

2. Then, get a great pair of shoes. This is where you can really jazz up your outfit. I bought these from TJMaxx last week and I already wore them to a party we had last weekend.
3. Reuse your wedding jewelery! For any fancy occasion, I always wear the necklace I wore on our wedding day. It's a big statement piece. Maybe you wore some pretty chandelier earrings or a beautiful pendant necklace. Why not wear them again?

wedding day: bridesmaids putting my necklace on

4. Punch up your makeup. I'm going to go for this purple-smokey eye this weekend. If you're already doing the smokey eye a lot, why not wear so a retro look with pretty red lipstick?

And remember, you ALWAYS look good when you're confident and having fun!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Stocking Stuffer Ideas for Guys

It's a well known fact that I am married to one of the hardest-to-buy-for people EVER. It usually works out pretty well that he doesn't 'want' for things because, truth be told, I have a hard enough time keeping track of all the things I want.

Oh I kid.

But I do think every relationship has a "spender" and a "saver". The lines are drawn pretty clear in ours.

But I like to give good gifts! Over the years I've learned to be pretty creative in the stocking department. So here I impart my ideas to you...

scratchers/lottery tickets
gift certificate to the movies
an ornament
car air fresheners
nail clippers
a new tie
mini notepads
new pens
new toothbrush
fishing lures
golf balls and tees
mini flashlight
a new belt
hair gel
flash drive
bottle opener
tickets to a game/event
swiss army knife

So, I hope that gives you some ideas! Now then. I have to show off a little. A couple nights ago I made a homemade chicken pot pie (recipe here). It was so YUM. And I had a little dough left over at the end so I added an H to the top, because monograms, they can go ANYWHERE I tell you.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas Card 2009

Oh my gosh, I LOVE Christmas cards! We live in a world of email, evite, e-everything! Do you ever feel like the only "regular" mail you get is bills? That's why I get so excited this time of year. I'm so excited to check the mail every day!

This year was the first year I decided to do a personalized photo card. We used a sweet girl from Etsy to create these:

Our friend, Rachael, took the picture one afternoon when we had a little impromptu photo-session on our porch swing. I look like a whack-a-doodle but it's candid and I love that!

*EDIT* One of my readers asked me which Etsy seller did our cards. I can't believe I forgot to give you her name (she was great to work with and one of the more affordable ones I found!)... It's sweetpapers.

I can't wait to visit the other blogs participating in the Card Carousel. Are you playing along??

Monday, December 14, 2009

Joy Pillows from Country Living Magazine

When I saw this picture in the newest Country Living, I thought "I can DO that!!"
Align CenterHere's what you will need to make a set for yourself:
2 yards red felt (it's $3.99/yd at Hobby Lobby but they run 50% off a lot!)
1/2 yard of an accent felt (I chose brown)
white and red thread
iron on adhesive
stuffing for the pillows (or inserts... I bought the 16'' ones)

1. To start, I free-handed the letters onto paper. Then, I cut them out and made stencils for the accent color.
2. When I had my letters cut out, I used white thread to stitch along the edges of the letters. The magazine didn't do this (and you could totally skip this step!) but I wanted mine to look more rustic.
3. Then I got to work making the pillows using the red felt. I cut 6 individual 20'' squares (let's not kid, I didn't measure at all. I went all willy nilly but it seemed to work out fine). I sewed two squares together along three of the edges and part of the 4th edge. I left a 8'' hole to stuff the pillow inside once it's turned right side out.
4. Then, I followed the instructions on the back of the iron adhesive to attach the letters to the front of the pillows. I just eyeballed it to get it centered!
5. Then I stuffed the pillow insert in (oh boy, that was like putting sausage in it's casing!) and stitched up the hole by hand.
Oh, and while I had the iron out, I ironed our names onto our stockings. Joe, if you're reading this, I swear I didn't realize those letters were pink when I started!!
I love these pillows. Isn't that what this season is about, JOY??

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Welcome Home - It's Christmas!

I'm joining Nester to show you around my house at Christmas! I can't wait to see what everyone else shows off. I've always been someone who loves to drive around at Christmas and look at people's houses and also look in their windows. In a non-creepy way!

Welcome in!
I like to jazz up the kitchen table for the holidays. Don't get me wrong: we don't actually EAT on these plates! ;-)

Christmas, Christmas everywhere!

We have two trees. One huge one in the living room...
And one in our bedroom.
I love falling asleep to the twinkle lights.
Every year Joe and I get each other one ornament. We have been doing this since our first Christmas. Those ornaments go on this tree. It is my favorite Christmas tradition!!
Come back tomorrow to see how I re-created the "JOY" pillows from Country Living magazine!
And then Wednesday I'm showing off our Christmas cards!

Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Take A Bullet

My life in bullet points...

  • Last weekend we went to a friend's daughter's first birthday party. It was so stinkin' cute - ladybug themed and they had t-shirts made for everyone. Isn't that a great idea??
  • I'm sick as a dog right now. Joe says it's a sinus infection but I'm thinking - could it be Swine?? Because I think I'm dying, y'all.
  • Although I'm sick I drug myself to dinner tonight because we had already made plans last week with a girl I hadn't seen since high school. She lives here in the same town as us and it was so weird to see her after all these years!
  • I just realized Christmas is soon. *gulp*. Must. Start. Shopping.
  • We have, like, four Christmas parties this year. How did my social calendar get so full all of the sudden??? I need dresses, stat!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

I've Got Rhythm

One of my friends asked me a long time ago what songs I have on my iPod that are good workout songs. Here is my "list". I'd love to hear yours because at some point you get to a place when you hear a song that's on your workout list and you immediately associate it with exercise. And that is the point when you need to update your playlist. Haha!

Body Language - Jesse McCartney
C'm On Feel the Noize - Quiet Riot
Cherry Pie - Warrant
Circus - Britney Spears
Down - Jay Sean (feat. Lil Wayne)
Fly Above - Kandi
Girls, Girls, Girls - Motley Crue
Gives You Hell - The All American Rejects
Ignition (Remix) - R. Kelly
In Da Club - 50 Cent
Low - Flo Rida
My Life Would Suck Without You - Kelly Clarkson
Obsessed - Mariah Carey
One, Two Step - Ciara (feat. Missy Elliot)
Party in the USA - Miley Cyrus
Poker Face - Lady Gaga
Right Round - Flo Rida
Sexy Back - Justin Timberlake
Show Stopper - Danity Kane
So What - P!nk
Temperature - Sean Paul
You Walked In - Lonestar

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Cooking Light Magazine, Dec 09 Issue

About four years ago I ordered a 12 month subscription of Cooking Light magazine.

In an ironic turn of fate, I'm still receiving issues despite the fact that I never renewed and also moved no less than four times in that span of time.

If only US Weekly would make the same mistake.

Because, truth be told, I don't even really like Cooking Light magazine. The recipes are just too advanced for someone of my novice caliber (someone who sometimes has a bowl of Capt'n Crunch cereal for dinner).

Anyway, I actually read this month's issue. Because HELLO they had cookies on the cover! Cookies and chocolate!

I thought I would share with you two recipes from this month's issue that I thought looked tasty.

Roasted Cornish Hens with Cherry-Port Glaze
Ingredients (note there's only FIVE!!):
1/2 c cherry preserves
1/2 c port
1 T grated fresh ginger
1 T balsamic vinegar
2 (1.5 lb) cornish hens

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place wire rack on a baking sheet and coat rack with cooking spray.
2. In saucepan, combine preserves, port, ginger, vinegar and 1/4 tsp. salt. Bring to boil, cook 9 minutes until slightly thick, stirring occasionally.
3. Remove and discard giblets and necks from hens. Rinse with cold water and pat dry. Remove skin and trim fat. Tie ends of legs together with twine. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under hen.
4. Sprinkle hen with salt and ground pepper.
5. Put hens on rack and bake at 400 for 15 minutes.
6. Pull hens out and brush with cherry mixture. Put back in oven and bake 40 minutes. (Brush with cherry mixture every 10 minutes)

Popcorn Brittle
Cooking spray
5 1/2 c popcorn without salt/fat
1 1/2 c sugar
6 T. light corn syrup
1/4 c water
3 T. molasses
1 T. butter
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt

1. Line a baking sheet with foil, coat foil with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. Place popcorn in a large ziplock bag, seal. Crunch popcorn and set aside.
3. Combine sugar, syrup and 1/4 c water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook 1 minute or until sugar dissolves, stirring constantly. Cook, without stirring, about 8 minutes. Stir in molasses and butter about 5 minutes. Stir in baking soda, vanilla and salt. Stir popcorn into boiling syrup mixture. Working quickly, pour popcorn into prepared pan, spread to 1/4 inch thickness using a wooden spoon coated with cooking spray.
4. Cool completely and break into large pieces.


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