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Friday, August 31, 2012

3 years ago...

Three years ago, I found myself skipping my first day of my senior year of college because the most exciting phone call I've received to-date was placed. My sister Jessica had gone into labor, and the long-awaited arrival of her first child- my first nephew - my mom's first grandchild - was near.

Three years ago today I fell in love again. With Danzig.

Each year, I like to take a moment and look back at snapshots from the year before. I love to look back and see how he's grown and evolved into the talkative, inquisitive, young toddler he is today.

***


September 2011


January 2012


March 2012


April 2012


May 2012


June 2012


August 2012

***

This past year, Danzig got a sister. He's no longer the only kid grabbing the attention. And it's beautiful to watch him kiss her and play with her and talk to her. I can't wait to see the two of them grow up together!

And I can't wait to celebrate his third birthday tonight!!

Happy Birthday, little man. You're awesome & I love you ♥

PS -- Year Two | Year One

Thursday, August 30, 2012

On Marriage & Football

Freshman Year - Fall 2006

As we head in to fall, I'm looking forward to normal setting in. I always feel like summer is a chaotic time for me. This summer, we moved. Which added an entirely new set of trials, tribulations and tales to the season.

I love summer. I really do.

But fall is when my life gets organized. So many wonderful things have happened to me during the Fall. It's hard to not associate all of those memories with the season. I'm a little more laid back (probably because I'm finally not sweating like crazy.)

Sophomore Year - Spring 2008

And there's football on the TV. Which, according to sitcoms, is supposed to drive a wedge between a husband and wife. Luckily for us, that's not the case at all. Football season gives us a chance to bond. We create detailed menus, throw football watching parties. We talk each week about what's coming up. (I ask C explain a few things to me here & there...)

College football is something we bonded over during our first Aggie game together, when we were Freshman back in 2006. Stealing a kiss at Midnight Yell, and celebrating every first down when the Aggies were down just a bit.

We've rushed the field after an incredible victory. Hidden under the stands when a giant storm blew in and the game was postponed an hour. We've followed games on our phones during our friend's wedding ceremonies. (We even had a pastor bee-line it for us after ceremony to ask the score, because he knew we'd know.) We've camped out in front of the ticket office in order to get better seats for the Thanksgiving game vs. t.u. (That's the University of Texas for you non-football/non-Aggies)

Fall 2010, after we beat Nebraska & stormed the field ♥

Sadly, our game tonight was postponed due to Hurrican Isaac. But that's not stopping us from watching football! Oh, no sir! We'll find ourselves somewhere, beer in hand, excited about the next few months.

Saturdays are now for Football, and making our marriage just a bit stronger. ♥

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The wait is over. College football is HERE!!

It seems like its been forever since I talked about football, but the wait of o-v-e-r!! Starting this Thursday, college football is in full gear. My Aggies are playing La Tech in Shreveport (if Isaac cooperates), and this maroon-bleeding Texas girl is beyond excited.

I'm excited about football, but I'm even more excited about our move to the SEC. I know there's a ton of you who are SEC-alumni (or current students), and I wanted to just say hey! And say, can't wait to play you!

(read that in a more aggressive tone, maybe take out the exclamation point...)

This year, Florida, Arkansas, LSU and Missouri are all coming to College Station, TX, and for 3 of 4 of those schools, it'll be the first time in a while. So I figured I could you a little sneak peak into my beloved town of Aggieland.

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Campus Landmarks
It honestly took me a while to really see how pretty our campus was. But once I started discovering its beauty, I kept finding it every where. Big Oak trees, endless blue skies. The recently renovated MSC is a definitely place to visit when on campus, and my personal favorite is the clock tower. It always reminds me I'm 1 minute late for work.






Downtown Bryan
Downtown Bryan is probably my favorite place to hang out in the area. There's awesome German food at the Brauhaus. Downtown Uncorked is right next door to The Village. Coffee and wine. Awesome for the whole family. And Casa Rod's El Mobley. Rice topped with fajita meat, queso and avocado slices. Maybe the best thing ever.




Pre-game
Blue Baker opens at 7 am and closes at 10 pm. It doesn't matter if it's a day game, afternoon game, or night game - make it a point to go. Below is the Roasted Red Pepper and Smoked Gouda soup with a Caprese sandwich. (And that's not even my favorite thing on the menu!) The chocolate croissant is my favorite item on the menu. Followed closely by the chicken salad.





Post-game
After the game, Northgate is the college place to party. Grab a beer and burger at the Dixie Chicken. Or, if you have a family, head down the road just a bit to Chicken Oil Company. I personally like Yesterday's for pool, but beware of the smoke there.




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I like it here. Can you tell? So proud to call this crazy little town home.

Stay tuned all week. I've decided to dedicate the next few days to the kick off of the college football season. Who's your team?

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{To see what others are loving, go to This Kind of Love}

Monday, August 27, 2012

Weekend Update.



So this weekend was awesome for two reasons: a random afternoon rainstorm. And the fact that I didn't have to work.

Three, if you want to count the various beverages we made for ourselves. I have an ongoing margarita obsession at the moment. Still making these


It's been an absolutely crazy few weeks at work, and as I said last week, it's been kicking my butt. So having two days to fully relax was so necessary. We didn't get out and do much. With the exception of walking next door to pick up tacos, I didn't even leave the house.

Plus, my dishes are are clean & put away, as is my laundry. I have a fancy new resume' website that I'm really proud of. AND FOOTBALL STARTS THIS WEEK!!


This is my third low-key weekend in a row. I'm getting a little spoiled ♥

Friday, August 24, 2012

Never Forget...

{FatMumSlim}
Happy Friday!
I hope you have a wonderful one ♥

See you Monday!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Move In Week



This week has been exhausting. For both C & me.

Living and working in a college town brings with it certain pros and certain cons. The summer's are really fun around here, there are always interesting people around, etc. But, one of the biggest cons is move in week.

Move in week brings 20,000++ people into town. Students are moving in. Parents are helping them. Professors are back from the summer break. Sororities and Fraternities are having rush weeks. The peaceful rhythm the whole town falls into over the summer is immediately and abruptly interrupted. 

Chaos and excitement are everywhere.

C works at one of the most popular bakeries in town, managing its catering (yesterday was one of his 3 biggest sales day of the year) and I work in tech support for one of the biggest departments on campus (so, we're getting everything organized and ready for the semester).

Basically, we're both swamped, stressed... and just plain old exhuasted.

So that means early bedtimes. Extra cuddling. Longer hugs... We're making it through, we'll soon be fully adjusted again to the chaos of the semester and (soon enough) football weekends. Just have to get through this week, then we'll be in the clear!

Almost the weekend.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Weekly Loving.

Here's what I'm loving this week....

  • This amazing dress from Athro ♥



  •  This creamy avocado dip. Think I'm going to bust it out next week during the first football game!



  •  This super-cute pic of Rashida Jones, which links to a really great article that she wrote.



  • This adorable polka dot sweater-shirt from Old Navy. Best part? It's only $17.50. I have one in the mail to me right now.

Source: oldnavy.gap.com via Amy on Pinterest


  •  Mango, mint and fresh mozzarella. I made this for our anniversary a while ago, and it was incredible! Definitely a must-try.



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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Looking ahead...

Source: veer.com via Gabriel on Pinterest

My best brainstorming sessions come when I'm alone.

When I find myself alone, I'm either super productive or super lazy. There's really not an in-between. Sometimes, super lazy is necessary. Last week was crazy at work, plus my second after-hours job picked up a bit, and come Friday, I was exhausted. So, super lazy weekend it was!

But usually, my alone times are super productive. I brainstorm craft ideas, recipe ideas, blog ideas. I dream up future business plans, and reorganize my life priority list. I read books intentionally. I even watch movies with a purpose. Those times are refreshing, because those times allow me to mark things off my To-Do list, and that makes me feel accomplished & just a bit lighter, if even for a moment.

(BONUS: a great To-Do List website, that I'm loving recently)

I posted the image below yesterday, but it spoke to me so much that I felt it necessary to share again.



I've found that I have a second super productive state. And that's brainstorming with C. 

Now, this doesn't happen often. We both have to be in the perfect mood for it. But when it does happen, it's magical. It's amazing how well we bounce ideas off of each other. He's the perfect pessimistic realistic balance to my naturally-idealistic thinking.

Over the past few months, I've changed my blog name. I've moved Facebook pages. I've changed the look of my blog. And I've been changing the structure and focus of my posts.

C has been the guiding voice of reason behind it all. And I'm happy to say that we have a lot of great things coming your way soon! I have a lot of work ahead of me, but I really think these series coming up will be really fun for me to write, and really fun for you to read.

So stay tuned for how to make piñatas and blog coding advice. How to make a perfect taco and how to host the perfect giveaway. (See two trends there?)

Fall is bringing crisp, cool weather, and really awesome stuff here. (Plus, football! Hello, new SEC rivals ♥ ) I'm so excited about it, I had to give my excitement its own post! :)

Want to "brainstorm" with me? If there's something you want to read about, let me know!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Weekend Update: My Weekend Alone.


Every few weeks, C goes off to spend time with the guys, and I'm left at home alone. Most of the time, I look forward to time alone. Time to try out new crafts & recipes. I get the whole TV to myself, and have the total ability to just hang out to my heart's content.

This weekend, however, I wasn't looking forward to my alone time. I was actually dreading it.



Luckily, two of my great friends pulled through, and I found myself laughing the night away over a bottle of wine with Gayle. And then found myself with Alyssa the next day talking web coding and design for three hours.

But I was still alone a lot. In a new house. Without any planned crafts or recipes to make.



Having no other choice, though, I sucked it up and made the most of it. Things are a bit more organized, my knowledge of CSS has increased ten-fold. And I can now proudly say I'm into Dawson's Creek by about 8 more episodes.

I also did a lot of reading, and came across this quote below... I sort of love it ♥

from my Jux


Have a lovely Monday ♥

Friday, August 17, 2012

Currently + a Winner!



So glad it's the weekend!! I'm going to the first Aggie Soccer game tonight, have a margarita/nacho date with a friend, and I think some cheesy awesome pizza will be in my near future!

So thankful for how well my giveaway turned out. You guys are awesome!! And I learned so much more doing this giveaway than I did on any of the last ones. I'm hoping to blog about that soon, because there's some invaluable lessons in there somewhere.

Quitting my gym this weekend, and joining a new one. It got stale, I wasn't really working out, and whole $40/mo isn't bad for a gym, the new one I'm signing up for is only $15/mo. Granted, it's a class-only gym, so no more weights/elliptical for me. But what I need right now is someone to tell me what to do next, and a personal trainer's out of the question.

Also, that'll get its own post later ;)

Happy that we met the same couple (the one in which I told I had only been married for 2 years instead of 3 last week) AGAIN last night. And I totally got a hug ♥ We have another event next week we're both planning on going to. So, apparently we're "free food and free drinks" friends.

Laughing at the fact that C said these "Currently" posts remind him of really bad high school poetry. As I'm writing this, I can't help but read it in "poetry" form in my head. (Which to me, just means pausing awkwardly every 3-5 words...)

***

And finally, what we've all be waiting for.... the giveaway winner! Congratulations to Jessica from Before the I Do's!! I'll be sending you an email soon ♥

Photobucket

***

There's great things coming up. Fall 2012 is going to be an awesome time around these parts. I'm so excited about them, and literally have pages full of just the basic outlines. Stay tuned!

If you're a new follower, first of all THANK YOU. I'm so happy to have you here. Second, leave me a comment & I'll come over and say hi :) I always love meeting new friends.

{ Have a lovely weekend! }

Thursday, August 16, 2012

On Marriage and Having Creative Friends

My addiction of taking pictures can blamed on a few things. But the amount of friends I've had who have decided to become photographers is partially to blame.



I'm surrounded by creative people, who are such an inspiration to me. And I'm blessed by their talent in the forms of paintings, lovely things to read, and photography.

My friend Leslie is maybe one of the most creative people I've ever met. Her blog is a constant source of inspiration to me. And she has a photography business. So, wanting to spend a bit more time with her and wanting to do something special for our three year anniversary, I called Leslie up and we made a photography date.



On July 4. At 7:30 in the morning. Because that's the only time we knew we wouldn't melt outside. And by about 8:30, the melting began, and we called it a day. And a few weeks later, a super cute envelope (with a super sweet note attached) was handed to me, and these lovely pieces of time were waiting for me to devour.



I love having these lovely shots of the two of us. And I love that Leslie was the one to take them. You can tell she has such a sweet nature just by her framing and editing. And I love the story the whole collection tells.

{via}



Thanks, friend, for a wonderful memory!

And if you're in Texas, call Leslie up. You won't be disappointed ♥

Leslie Laughs: Blog | Twitter

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Weekly Loving.

Well, hello, Wednesday. We meet again. Seems like you were just here?

Oh well. I like Wednesdays! It means we're halfway through the week. Halfway to another weekend. This Wednesday also means there's only 2 more days to enter my giveaway. Eek! Crazy how fast time flies!!

Have you entered yet? All you have to do it "like" my Facebook page, then tell me about it here. Simple. Easy. Done.

Self-promos aside ;) Here's what I'm loving this week...

  •  This simple, beautiful summer "soup".... Avocado & Cucumbers. Sounds so refreshing! I can't wait to try this recipe out!!



  •  Liz's outfit this week just made me smile. Sure, my stomach will never look that great in a cropped top. But it's sequins with gingham. And the girl pulls it off. Bravo!



  • Anthropologie RT'd a fan's Instagram picture of a bedroom nook display. And for good reason. In love with this retail set up!

Source: instagram.com via Amy on Pinterest


  •  This slumber party bag makes me smile :D



  •  And finally, Keiko Lynn is probably one of my favorite bloggers right now. The girl is hilarious. And this video is so fun to watch ♥


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going on through 8/17 ♥

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Beat the Heat: Roasted Blueberry Basil Margarita {Recipe}

At the beginning of the summer, I had two goals in the drink department:

1) Make a fancy simple syrup
2) Make a fruit-based margarita

I knocked #1 out pretty quickly when I made a Rosemary Simple Syrup. We had some good times testing out different recipes using it. My favorite was the Rosemary Grapefruit Mimosa, while C was more partial to super-refreshing Rosemary Lynchburg Lemonade.

It's surprising how long #2 took to accomplish. Especially because I love margaritas and am always up for a challenge. But (and I blame this in part on Lynchburg Lemonade), I got on a really strong Bourbon kick at the start of summer, and all other spirits were left mostly ignored by me, including Tequila.

Until I saw this recipe on How Sweet It Is.


It was love at first look. I had to make them. And so I did.

***



It's times like these that I wish I was good at food photography. Because I was completely unable to capture how beautiful these really were. Rich in color, as well as in flavor. I had never roasted Blueberries before. Or put Basil in my margarita (or really in any drink that I can think of right now....) What I'm saying is: these pictures don't do this drink justice.

This thing was a home run, all the way.

Jessica, you are my current hero. I thank you, ma'am.

***

So first up, roasting blueberries. It's embarassingly easy. Just throw them on a pan, sprinkle with some salt & put in the oven at 350* for ~15 minutes. The aroma that'll instantly come out of your kitchen is indescribable. I'm thinking of roasting a bunch of different types of fruit just to see what smells best.

At the same time, make your simple syrup. 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water. Boil. And, oh yeah, add some basil in there too. I did about 5 BIG leaves. Honestly wish I would have done more. But boil until all the sugar is dissolved. I always boil it too long, but I like thick syrup.

With me so far? Good.

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Storing over night // Ready to go in the morning


Now's the hard part: you have to wait for it to cool. I poured my (now)roasted blueberries into my (now)dissolved basil sugar water, and threw that in the fridge overnight as is. In the morning, I blended it together, then strained it.

The overnight refrigerating, and the straining, aren't necessary. They just seemed like the right thing to do. So I did it. And don't regret it one bit.

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Once the syrup's ready, the fun begins!! Cointreau, Tequila, Lime Juice, salted-rim-type fun. I love every part of mixing a margarita. Everyone's tastes are different. (C likes more tequila, I like more Cointreau.) You just use the Roasted Blueberry Basil simple syrup instead of regular simple syrup (or Agave nectar, as I usually use.)

How Sweet It Is has a pretty rockin' margarita recipe. I'll just send you back over there to see it. Because, this is [after all] her recipe. I'm just your official taste tester ♥

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Once the drink's mixed and poured, enjoy!

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Monday, August 13, 2012

My weekend, in short.







Sometimes pictures say it all. It was a simple weekend, spent mostly at home. Just the two of us, alone. Just what I needed. Grilled peaches were just a plus...

Happy Monday ♥

***
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