Wednesday, April 29, 2015

One Year Anniversary Recap

We had an absolutely wonderful first anniversary weekend! I have been swamped with school, so I am just now getting around the recapping it.
Saturday morning we dropped Yadi off at Camp Bow Wow, and made the drive down to Savannah. The weather was absolutely terrible. As soon as we arrived, we stopped for a drink at one of our usual places, the Blue Moon Tavern, and then got lunch at Treylor Park. Lunch was to die for! We had fried chicken and waffle fries nachos.
Treylor Park nachos
 The Cotton Exchange and gray skies.
We checked into our hotel room and took a nap. Later we went back out. There was a break in the rain for a while, but not for long. I told Nick I was going to show him how to hurricane party.
 drink at Boar's Head
We were supposed to have a carriage ride Saturday evening. The rain stopped for a while, but as soon as our horse arrived it was supposed to storm again so our horse had to leave. This horse is Salt, and we had his brother Pepper for a carriage ride last year. I love Draft horses. They are such gentle giants.
 Our horse Salt before he had to leave
We walked to our dinner reservations since our horse had to leave. We got caught in a terrible downpour. At that point, I didn't care. It wasn't cold and the weather was so bad it was comical. Not one, but BOTH of my little gold metallic flip flops blew out as we were trying to make it to dinner. I ended up eating in a very nice restaurant with no shoes!
We ate at Circa 1875, and we will for sure be going back. Everything there was so good.
Sunday morning we woke up to a gorgeous day. We had breakfast at Huey's, and then walked around Forsyth Park.  We stopped in the gift shop at the Mercer Williams house and I got some stationary.
 Forsyth Park
 I wish I could spend every Sunday afternoon here
On the way home we stopped in Hampton and I showed Nick where I competed in the Watermelon Festival Pageant. Their festival is a lot of fun, and I hope to go back someday. Out of all the pageants I competed in, that was my favorite and the most fun.
 Hampton SC
Sunday evening I made Cowboy Lasagna and we had champagne and wedding cake for dessert. I think I am the only person to say this - we totally lucked out and our wedding cake was really good!
In fact, it was so good I was afraid I was going to eat it all week, so I brought it to work and everyone that tried it said it was good.
 Our wedding cake a year later
Have a wonderful rest of the week!
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Thursday, April 23, 2015

One Year

First of all, HOW has it been a year already?! This weekend Nick and I will be heading to Savannah to celebrate our one year anniversary. 
I remember this week last year in so much detail, and it feels like it just happened yesterday. This year has flown by, maybe more so than any other year so far in my life.
 It has been full of good times. Spending Christmas in our house for the first time was one of the highlights for me.  
One of  the best things I have done for myself and my marriage this year is to join a church and start attending Sunday school.

Certainly we have been through a few trying times. I try to always keep things positive on my blog though. I write candidly about mistakes I've made in my past, and am an open book about a lot of things. Our home life is not one of them.  
I am also a big believer in only speaking well about your husband. This is something I learned in my Sunday school class. My husband makes that pretty easy to do, and I should do it more often! 
This may seem minute, but with all this rain we've been having this spring I have been so appreciative that Nick put new windshield wipers on my car. He saw I needed them, and took care of it. After you have been a single woman living alone, that is HUGE!  
Nick is certainly much better than I deserve, and God has blessed me immeasurably by sending him into my life. He is my "immeasurably more." (Ephesians 3:20)
 I would strongly encourage single ladies not to settle, but to wait on God's perfect timing. When I graduated college at twenty-three, I was READY. But, the plans God had for me were much better. Nick is better than anymore I could have dreamed of ending up with.  
I will also say that I read one of Patti Stanger's books when I was single, and she has you make a list of what you want in a partner. Nick is probably 80% of that list. I wish I'd kept it, but I became disgusted with it and put it in the incinerator at my old apartment. (Thanks Patti!)  
From the time I was a little girl, I've always wanted to get married for the companionship. I've found that in Nick.  
Most of all, this year has been FUN! I look forward to many more happy years together.
So, happy anniversary Nick.
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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

End of Semester - Spring 2015 Edition

I don't have much to write about, and won't until after finals. I am very anxious to finish up this semester. This summer I won't have to take classes, and will only have speech camp. I feel like it will be my first real summer in a long time!
Last summer I took Neuro and Research Methods so I didn't have much free time. In addition to going to school, I am also working right now. I really struggled with Research Methods. I am not a big math person.  
My *BEST* college summer was in 2003. My daily itinerary was: sleep in, get up around 9, go lay out, read, get ready and go on a date, or go into work at my waitressing job at 4. Stay up late. Repeat.
Other summers I worked for Hilton (my undergrad was Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Management), and still had a decent amount of free time.
I am pretty happy to say that I haven't really procrastinated on anything this semester. I've worked ahead a good bit. I am just READY. Ready to knock everything out, and have the semester over. Ready for sweet freedom.
In the precious amount of free time I've had, I've done some gardening, cleaned the house some, spent time with Nick, gone to church, and watched Mad Men.
I have some exciting things coming up this summer, and I can't wait to share them. I hope y'all are having a wonderful week! Good luck to everyone taking finals next week.
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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Books I've Loved Lately

I love reading. I find it way more relaxing than watching tv. When I am watching tv, I often find myself playing on my phone or doing chores. These are a few books I've loved lately.
This book is seriously SO good. If you liked The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (I loved it), you will enjoy this book. It has a great theme about bullying in it. The main character has Treacher Collins syndrome, although the author never comes out and says so, and is bullied because he looks a bit different from other kids. This book is so good, I might read it again. I feel like I especially enjoyed it since I am in school to be an SLP.
Dear Senator
This book is by Essie Washington Williams, Strom Thurmond's daughter. I loved reading about her life and her experiences. It also has a lot of interesting history about South Carolina in it. I am often in such a hurry, that I didn't really notice until I read this book that I walk by the statue of Strom Thurmond at the State House all the time. Aside from the obvious subject of her famous father, I enjoyed reading about Essie's life and marriage.  

Walking Across Egypt
My Mom read this book with one of her classes several years ago, and I decided to read it because I didn't have anything else to read. It was really pretty good. It's a cute story, and an easy read. The author's depiction of life in the South is spot on, and the main character will remind you of a little old lady at your church. The food in the book made me hungry, and I've been wanting butter beans ever since I read it. I think my Mom also showed the movie with Jonathan Tyler Thomas to her class, but I can't find it on Amazon Prime or Netflix.
I read really fast and am always looking for suggestions, so if you've read something good recently please let me know!
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Monday, April 13, 2015

Monday Randoms

1. I ate HORRIBLY last week due to having Masters company, and going out on both Monday and Thursday nights. Somehow, I have lost three pounds and am down to 144 which makes me happy. I am still trying to get down to the 130s.
2. We are reading this book in my Sunday school class and I really like it. And while we're at it, can I just say I love my Sunday school class?
3. We (read: Nick) put squash and tomatoes in Saturday, and I am so excited to have a garden again. Last year spring was so crazy with our wedding that we did absolutely nothing as far as planting.
4. I read The Girl on the Train in a few days and it is seriously SO good. If you are looking for something suspenseful to read, I recommend it. Amazon said if you like Gone Girl (I loved it), you will like this. Now I need something else good to read.
5. Speaking of Gone Girl, I keep turning the movie on while I am doing chores around the house. I really, really like it. Nick gave it to me for Valentine's Day this year.
Have a wonderful Monday!
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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Easter Recipes

Happy Friday Eve!!
This week has been crazy and we've had company in town for the Masters. Somehow I've managed to get a good bit of school work done. I found out I made an A in my Clinical Eval course, which ended at Spring Break, so I've been happy about that. Can we just get this semester over with already?
I am always so flattered when someone asks for one of my recipes. I had a reader ask for my Easter recipes, and I am happy to share.
The ham recipe I use is from the Essentially Lilly: A Guide to Colorful Holidays book. My grandmother gave me this book several years ago, and I keep it on display in our living room.
According to the book, Lilly invented the recipe one day when she went to look for a Coke to splash on her ham and only found a can of ginger ale.
Baked Ham with Ginger-Pineapple Glaze
One 20 ounce can crushed pineapple in juice, well drained, juices reserved
Two 12 ounce cans ginger ale, as needed
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon dry mustard
One 8 pound spiral-sliced smoked ham
Position rack in center of oven and pre-heat to 325 degrees. Oil a large roasting pan.
Mix pineapple juice, 1 can ginger ale, brown sugar and mustard in blender to dissolve mustard. Set aside.
Place ham, flat side down, in the pan. Pour pineapple juice mixture over the ham. Pat the crushed pineapple onto the ham; if you press hard it will stick nicely. Place pan with ham and pineapple juice on top of stove and bring to boil over two burners on high heat. Tent ham with foil and transfer to oven.
Bake for 1 hour, checking occasionally to be sure that juices aren't burning and adding a bit more ginger ale to the pan if needed to keep the juices moist. Discard foil tent and baste ham with pan juices. Bake, basting occasionally and adding more ginger ale to pan if needed, until a meat thermometer inserted halfway into the ham, but not touching the bone, reads 140 degrees, about 45 minutes more. Transfer ham to a serving platter and tent with foil to keep warm. Let ham stand for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, place roasting pan over two burners on high heat and bring juices to a boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until juices are dark and syrupy, 5 to 10 minutes. Pour juice over ham and serve.
The deviled eggs I made are Sriracha Deviled Eggs and the recipe is straight from Garden and Gun's website. The sriracha really adds something extra. I skipped the bacon fat.
I think the Coca Cola Cake recipe I used before Pinterest was from The Sweet Potato Queens book. Instead of digging for the book, I used one from Pinterest for Easter and the cake wasn't quite as good. I say that, but I still had several pieces. This is the recipe I used for Easter.
We have plans yet again tonight. I am so ready for the weekend and a day with no plans. Saturday just might be that day. Thanks for reading!
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Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Easter Weekend Recap

We had a very busy, but wonderful Easter. In fact, it is one of the best Easters I've ever had, and the best Easter I've had in about five years.
Friday I got off work early and went to the Piggly Wiggly. You know I love grocery shopping, so this was fun to me. Grocery shopping is not enjoyable for everyone, but I like doing it. When I got home I made two Coca Cola Cakes from scratch. I hadn't made one in years, and I forgot what I was missing. It is so good! It was Nick's first time having Cola Cola Cake, and he loved it.  
Saturday morning I went to barre (Cola Cola Cake guilt), and then got ready and went to one of my best friend's house. We had a great time at the park with her two kids that afternoon. Later that evening, we had a potluck with two other friends. My friend brought beignets, and they are TO DIE FOR!! We also had heirloom tomato vodka Bloody Marys and it was really good vodka. I spent the night and stayed up way too late having fun.
Sunday morning came bright and early. I drove back home and got ready for church. I really love the church we joined. After church Nick and I had a great Easter lunch. We had ham (Lilly Pulitzer ginger ale/pineapple recipe), crock pot mac n cheese, and siracha deviled eggs. I got the deviled eggs recipe from Garden and Gun magazine, and I will make it again for sure. The siracha is a great twist on deviled eggs. We were also supposed to have green beans, but I forgot about them being in the oven and ruined them.
I put treats in a few eggs and hid them in the backyard for the dogs. Yadi seemed to enjoy finding them.
I am so tired and so ready for the weekend. We went out last night with some friends that are in town for the Masters. Nick is there today and I am working - so not fair! I have a Literacy class that only lasts the month of April, and I have a lot due for it. I am struggling this week.
Have a wonderful Tuesday.
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