Monday, January 27, 2014

Weekend Recap

Our weekend was low key. Friday night I studied and made these cookies. I still haven't gotten the recipe exactly right, but I sent some of the cookies to my Mom through my friend that works with her, and my Mom's bf already sent me a text this morning that said they were good. I will definitely try another recipe from the Averie Cooks blog.
Saturday I spent the day in Greenville with my friends Jena and Jessie. We took zero pictures, which is very unlike me. We had lunch at Red Bowl and went to the Pottery Barn. After obsessing for weeks over finding the *perfect* bedspread, I ordered this (on sale!) from Pottery Barn's website and I absolutely cannot wait for it to get it. I ordered the neutral color. I have a new down comforter for it to go over coming from Rue La La.
Now that the wedding is quickly approaching I am looking forward to having more money to spend on our house after it is over. I've made a few improvements lately such as some buying some new rugs at HomeGoods and getting some new kitchen and guest bathroom stuff. I am super excited to do more soon.
 I LOVE this neutral living room. Nick mostly hangs out upstairs in his man cave, so the living room downstairs is like a lady cave for me.
Happy Monday everyone. It is supposed to SNOW here this week, so send snowy thoughts! 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Long Weekend Recap

I love long weekends! Every weekend should be a three day weekend, don't you agree?
After starting classes last Monday, going to barre a few times during the week, and being slammed at work, I was worn out by Friday. We didn't do much this weekend, and it was amazing. There was a lot that I needed to do, like studying and housework, but I let it slide.
Me and Benson, and the dogs taking it easy.
I am ashamed to say that after not seeing my fiancé for five days I didn't even make him a homemade meal. We ordered pizza Saturday night and got takeout from Moe's on Sunday. I swear I will do better in the future. Nick eats out a lot when he is traveling for work, so I like to have homemade meals when he is home.
Sunday I went shopping and got two bags for a steal at TJ Maxx. I figured I can use the black one now, and the white one will get me through Spring and Summer. That way I will be set for while. I also picked up a few items of office clothing such as pencils skirts. I am heavily inspired by Abby's clothes on Scandal right now.

Last night I went to my friend Benson's for a pageant committee meeting. I love the other committee members this year, and am really looking forward to helping with his pageant again. We had wine, cheese, and pizza so that helped to make the meeting such a fun and relaxing time. 
Have a great Tuesday!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Get Out of a Speeding Ticket Casserole

I've seen this recipe on several different blogs, so I'm not sure who to credit it to. This is Bow Tie Fiesta, and is the casserole I was bringing to a friend when I was pulled over for speeding on the Isle of Palms Connector. I am convinced I would have gotten a ticket if it hadn't been for having the casserole right there.
You will need:
8 ounces bow tie pasta
1 pound ground beef
½ onion, chopped (I skip the onion, we don't care for them)
½ green bell pepper, chopped
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon chili powder
Salt to taste
1 cup sour cream

1 cup salsa (I like the salsa from the Publix deli the best)
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Cook the pasta using package directions and cooking for 7 minutes; drain. Brown the beef in a skillet, stirring until crumbly; drain. Add the onion and green pepper and mix well. Cook until the onion is tender, stirring constantly. Stir in the tomato sauce, chili powder, and salt. Combine the pasta, ground beef mixture, sour cream,  and salsa in a bowl and mix well. Spoon into a 9×11-inch or 9×9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with the cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes or until brown and bubbly. Yield: 8 servings
I've also made this without meat when my Mom, who is a vegetarian, was visiting.

Seriously so good!!
 I only put green peppers on my half because Nick doesn't like them.
Yay for TGIF tomorrow!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Wedding Wednesday

I've been trying to get more checked off my ever growing to do list and finalized before this semester really gets under way. Monday was my first day back at school. This semester I'm taking Language Development and Articulation Disorders.
I signed our florist's contract this morning and put it in the mail. We are using A to Zinnia and I am so excited!! Our flowers will be similar to these.

I know I already posted about cake tasting, but I am super excited about the cake. It will be four tiers, with a different flavor/filling in each tier (Nick picked all the flavors). There is a cascade of sugar flowers going down the cake. Our flowers are more like peonies and bigger than these, but you get the idea.

I also ordered 300 koozies and our beverage napkins. Those were fun to design. I used Totally Wedding Koozies for the koozies and For Your Party for the bev naps. I can't wait to see how everything will look together.
I also got straws and signs and a few other decorations from etsy. I know soon I will be swamped with school work, so I tried to cram in as much planning as I could in a few days.
I'm leaving work early to get my hair touched up. I go to the Five Points Salon and I LOVE it. I hope everyone has a great Hump Day!!

NC Belle in Boots

Monday, January 13, 2014

Weekend Recap

Friday I got off work early and met Nick in Savannah for a quick getaway. We met with the woman doing our wedding cake and LOVED her. We are using Minette Rushing. Her business is called Custom Cakes and all her cakes are gorgeous. In my opinion, cake tasting is definitely the most fun wedding planning task!
Friday night we went on a carriage ride and it was amazing. We had dinner at Boar's Head after and then made some friends and went to Molly MacPherson's. Saturday we went to Leopold's for lunch, and walked around for while. We went to The Christmas Shop and The Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist. St. John's still had their nativity display up and it was absolutely breathtaking. St. John's is one of the most peaceful places I've ever been.
Savannah never gets old to us. Even though this was a short getaway, we both thought this was one of the most fun trips we've ever been on.
We were back home by Saturday evening. We took it easy for the rest of the weekend. Sunday Nick got caught up on some work related stuff, and I went to shopping at a few places like Ulta and HomeGoods and did errands like grocery shopping.  
So far this Monday is going by quickly and painlessly! I hope that is the case for everyone else. Tonight I will be going to Pure Barre and making an exchange at Ulta. The Stila eyebrow pen I got is WAY to dark for me and I feel like a clown today.  

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Wedding Update

My sweet friend Ashley, who is one of my closest friends from college, joined our wedding party as a bridesmaid and I am THRILLED. 

My two local bridesmaids, Jessie and Jena, are super excited about having Ashley also.
Ashley and I lived together in the dorms at South Carolina and had so much fun. We also lived together for several years post college, and that might have been even more fun.
I will never forget the time we went on a ski trip and she fell off a mountain. She is really a beach person, and I don't think she ever plans on going on another ski trip.
I'll also never forget when we saw the first Paranormal Activity in the theatre and had to sleep with the lights on that night.
She was so good to me when I did pageants. She has spent many a Saturday getting up early to do my hair and makeup. She is also a retired pageant girl and is absolutely phenomenal at dance.
This is from a project I did in college. For the project I planned on own pretend wedding.
I feel very blessed to have such good friends in my life. I've been friends with Jessie and Jena since high school. I think soon I'll do a post with a little bit about each bridesmaid.
Friday we have an appointment for a cake tasting and I CANNOT WAIT. I am literally counting down the hours and saving my calories. Everyone says the woman we are meeting with is the best in Savannah.
I hope everyone has a great Tuesday!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014

Warning: photo heavy post
We spent two days in Iowa for Christmas, and had a wonderful staycation for the rest of my time off from work. For NYE wen went out for Mexican and watched the ball drop on tv at home. Not the most exciting I know, but I always felt like going out on NYE is overrated.
2013 was probably my best year yet, and I am looking forward to what is ahead of us in the coming year. I for sure CANNOT WAIT until our wedding on April 26.
Some of the big highlights of 2013 included getting accepted to and beginning grad school. This was something I've wanted for a long time, and for a few different reasons seriously doubted that it would ever be possible for me. It came as a huge surprise when I received this letter on an ordinary Saturday afternoon in March.
We also found our wedding venue in March.
In early April I took a fun girls trip to Atlanta with two of my bridesmaids (Jessie and Jena), my flower girl, and my Mom.
In May we found a great used boat for a good price, and enjoyed some fun times on Lake Murray (when it wasn't raining, which wasn't often this summer).
We also went to the Bahamas and fell in love with it. I still can't believe we got to swim with dolphins.  I want to do it again!
We had several fun weekends with our friends John and Marcia. Marcia, Nick, and I all celebrated birthdays in July. I also lost ten pounds, which felt like a huge accomplishment to me.
In August I found my wedding dress and started classes, and somehow just barely got by without losing my mind between grad school and planning a wedding.
We had an awesome trip to Chicago and Milwaukee with Nick's brother and sister.

And watched our Gamecocks during football season.

I had a fun weekend with my Mom for her birthday in October.

Tedd visited us for the second time this year in November and we hosted Thanksgiving at our house.

The year ended with a fun girls weekend in Charleston with my bff/college roommate Ashley, and getting to meet another beastie's newborn baby girl.

The worst part of 2013 was unexpectedly losing our cat Ricky in August. I still think about him almost every day.
I've had some ups and downs just like everyone else. Some of my biggest trials have been getting laid off from a job I loved in early 2009, then being at a terrible job for almost three years, and a family member's illness in 2010. I really have an appreciation for the good times now.
I can't wait to see what is in store for 2014!!