Thursday, December 31, 2009

Midnight Train

Hey y'all!

How ya doing? :)

Lunch today was a little leftover rice pilaf from the other night:

We actually just ate “dinner” around 3pm, and it was FABULOUS!!!! My mom made roasted turkey, homemade gravy and dressing, cranberry orange relish, and green beans. Holy delight! I had 2 servings, and wanted so.badly to go back for more! We’re having an apple pecan crumble for dessert, but I don’t want to wait to post until after we eat it. Here’s some pics of dinner!

This afternoon we went to see Invictus with my parents, and I’ve got to say that it was by far one of my favorite sports films. Let me just add that sports films (primarily with team sports) are some of my favorite movies. I grew up playing team sports, and I love the camaraderie that comes from relying on others. Because, let’s face it: in real life, we all rely on one another.

You rely on pilots to not let the plane crash when we travel. If we’re married or in a relationship, we trust the other person to love us and not hurt us. You rely on other drivers just about any where you go to follow the rules, to not be reckless. You rely on manufacturers of clothing, food, shelter, or really anything to do so with integrity. We all need one another, and I thought this film did a great job of portraying that truth.

Watching the South African rugby team do something that was beyond themselves for the sake of their country was a truly inspiring thing for me to see. It served as a reminder that this world and this life is about so much more than little ol’ me. And since this is New Year’s Eve, I’d like to lay out my resolutions:

1. Do something this year that is completely and wholeheartedly selfless. I’m not sure what that specific thing is just yet, but I am tired of being about me and would like to be used for whatever God has in store for me.
2. The standard eat better and exercise more falls in line here; however, this time I’d like to do those things with the heart of inspiring others to live their very best life and to honor the bodies we were blessed with.
3. I’d like to go to culinary school so that I can use my knowledge in order for others to have a better understanding of the blessing that is food.

I’d love to pose a challenge to anyone who reads this to help hold me accountable to these resolutions. Will I be 100% selfless? Not likely. But I can remember to be a better person with your help and prayers? Most definitely.

Thank you all so much for showing the love by leaving encouraging comments and helping me to continue my adventure of finding purpose in this life. I can’t wait to share my journey with y’all for 2010 as well!

What are your plans for New Year's lunch? (hope it includes some black-eyed peas ;)

Happy New Year!

My Heart is Blessed!

Wow, I didn't realize I'd taken so many pictures yesterday!

We had a great time at Bless Your Heart. It felt so good to get back! We started off with our self-made appetizer of wheat croutons with avocado dressing and Santa Fe dressing (from the salad bar - yes, we are THOSE people):

I ordered the Santa Fe chicken sandwich with a honey-wheat bun, grilled chicken breast, a slathering of guacamole, some pico de gallo, mozzerella cheese, and lettuce. I also added some salsa to it for extra flavor and extra tomatoes. They serve it with a side of pasta salad with lots of zucchini, cauliflower, and tomatoes:

Nate ordered a turkey and avocado sandwich. It's on their honey-wheat bread with turkey, avocado, lettuce, cucumbers, and tomatoes.

Another view of mine:

AND THEN we had their fat free frozen yogurt!!!!! I wanted to get eggnog, but Nate isn't the biggest fan, so we "settled" for chocolate (which is actually not a bad thing to settle on since it's super rich and delicious!

I was one happy lady!

When I graduated from Texas Tech I never got the picture by the seal, so I figured yesterday was the day to do it. I'm on the left with my guns up!

Next, Nate and I stopped by Sugar Brown's coffee, which is an AMAZING coffee shop that's owned by our friend Justin Barnard, who incidentally is also the owner of West Crust pizza! We picked up a cup of coffee to split:

Sugar Brown's is a great venue to play live coffee shop music, or to go SEE live coffee shop music. It's a wonderfully eclectic setting, the ambiance is fantastic, and the coffee is great! If you're ever in Lubbock, I'd highly recommend visiting!

From there we went to Barnes and Noble to pick up a book, wandered around the mall for a bit, and then headed home. Upon getting back to the house, we found my mom cooking up an Italian feast! We started off with a salad of romaine, green onions, orange bell peppers, carrots, and tomatoes:

Followed that up with oven-fried chicken parmesan and bruschetta spaghetti:

If you're mouth isn't watering yet, we also had some good 'n' grainy bread with olive oil, herbs, and roasted garlic:

Nate and I opened this bottle of wine to try:

I've never been able to really get into wine, but after reading Jenna's blog, all I want to do is learn more and more about it! Without knowing anything about how to taste wine or what to look for, I can honestly say that this Merlot was very smooth and had a lot of dark berry notes to it...especially raspberries! Yum!

We finished up with a peach cobbler and a dollop of whipped cream:

We played Sorry! again tonight, but this time we did teams: men vs. women. Mom and I were down all game, and came back at the last second to win! We left those boys speechless, and we were SO excited :)

After watching some football bowl games, it was about time for bed. Nate and I walked back to our bedroom to see these two sleepy faces laying on the bed. Wasn't that sweet of them to warm up our bed for us?

Finally, this morning, for my last breakfast of 2009, I had another serving of Pumpkin Pie yogurt with apples and granola:

I used the same recipe as yesterday. I do want to say though, that if Greek yogurt is not for you, you can definitely make this same thing with regular plain yogurt, or even with vanilla yogurt (just don't add sweetening of any kind). I just really prefer the creamy thickness of Greek yogurt, and I like the tartness as well!

Plans for the day = going to see Invictus with my family, running, and helping my mom prepare our turkey dinner! I'm also going to blog later about my resolutions and hopefully add some great tips I've picked up along the way.

Question: What are your plans for New Year's Eve?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Wreck 'Em!

Morning everyone!

Hope y'all had a great night! I know Nate and I did, even though neither one of us won Scrabble last night :)

Breakfast this morning was Pumpkin Pie yogurt (recipe from Caitlin's blog). I'm LOVING this breakfast; it's so filling and completely wonderful!

  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt (plain, nonfat)
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 apple (whatever you prefer; we had honeycrisp in the house this morning)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 packet Truvia
  • LOTS of ground cinnamon
Just mix it all together, and you'll be loving life :)

I'm pretty excited about today because we're going with my parents to Academy to look at running pants, and then Nate and I are headed up to Texas Tech to walk around the campus and then go to Bless Your Heart. Texas Tech holds a special place in my heart since I grew up in Lubbock, my dad is a professor there, and it's my alma mater.

It's also where I met my sweet husband! It's so funny, I used to work out for 3 hours a day while I went to school there...I guess that's one of the benefits of being a college student with a super flexible schedule and a free membership to a great workout facility :) I remember not too long after Nate and I met for the first time, I was riding my bike to the Rec Center for the daily workout, and saw him walking to his car. I rode up to say hi, and I can honestly say it was one of the most awkward moments of my life! I later found out he was super short and awkward because he liked me and didn't know what to do/say (all together now: "Awwwwwww!"). I've been so blessed to have such a wonderful husband, regardless of how the relationship started :)

Yes, we're special!

All that to say, I'm so excited to go back to campus for the first time in a long time! I'll definitely be posting some pictures of that and our lunch at Bless Your Heart.

Y'all have a wonderful rest of your morning!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Just Trying to Figure This Out...


How's y'alls evening? Ours has been fairly uneventful, but that's definitely something that I'm enjoying since I know we're going to hit the ground running when we get back to Colorado.

Today, we went to World Market and picked up 2 soup mixes: Lentil and White Bean! I'm so excited about these; soup is definitely a staple in my diet since it's so easy and all-inclusive:

We also picked up 2 bottles of wine, but since I couldn't find both of them, I just photographed this one:

Has anyone ever had Cupcake's wine? I've been getting more into wine lately, and am really hoping this one can turn into a fave!

For dinner we had minestrone soup:

This has turkey sausage, zucchini, carrots, cabbage, onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, and chicken broth. Delish!

On the side we had a fruit salad with an orange, a banana, and a honeycrisp apple...Glorious!

And some shut-yo-mouth cornbread. I've been dreaming of cornbread for at least 4 weeks now, and my mom makes hers homemade. It's heaven with a sliver of butter and some honey drizzled on top. HOLY COW MY MOUTH IS WATERING. I'm so full, but if there was a chunk of hot cornbread in front of me right now, you can bet I'd still be eating it :)

After dinner Nate and I each had a beer in a glass. Why a glass you ask? Because, since Bunker was about a year old, Nate would let him lick the top of the beer bottle (he never tasted the beer, just the smell) when he was done drinking it. Now, Bunker will FREAK.OUT until he gets to lick the bottle, so we have to drink beer out of glasses no matter what now.

Nate had a Real Ale from Blanco, Texas:

And I had an Anchor Porter . I love porters and stouts, and really don't drink anything but those. Go figure; the flavor is so much better!

And then we played Scrabble. Nate and I are ruthless when we're not on the same team. Tonight was yet another textbook example of that!

But thank goodness my mom won, and we can't get mad at her because she's so adorable :)

I'm getting excited about New Year's coming crazy is it that it's almost 2010? It feels like only yesterday it was turning the year 2000 and people were going crazy with anticipation about Y2K. Better be careful though, I might date myself ;)

I'm particularly excited about continuing my quest for a healthy lifestyle this year, which is something I've already started doing. I think my biggest goal this year is to continue to push my blog to the next level (whatever that might be). At some point I'd like to get this whole thing to a point where I can help reach and encourage women worldwide to live the life they deserve and want. I'm continually working on what that looks like :)

What sort of advice do you have for getting a blog to the "next level"? I know I"ve asked this before, but what would you like to see more of on this blog? What are your goals for your blog?

Big 50

Afternoon y'all :)

Today I hit the 50 blog post mark, which is crazy! It just feels like I started doing this yesterday because I have so much fun doing it. Hopefully me sharing my crazy life helps someone else even a little bit :)

Last night when I walked into our room, and found Keira curled up atop all of the pillows:

I thought it was pretty cute and thought I should share :)

This morning I woke up in time to partake in some coffee, so I had a big cup of it along with a large cup of water:

Then I helped Nate make a breakfast sandwich on a whole wheat English muffin, ham, scrambled egg whites, and some reduced fat Monterey Jack:

And I made a (stealing this from Kath) Hugh Jass bowl of oatmeal:

1/3 cup oats, 1/3 cup water, 1/3 milk, 1 Tbsp dried cranberries, 1 Tbsp Bob's Red Mill Golden Flax, some vanilla, and 1/4 cup of pumpkin, stirred in at the end. It was delicious and satisfying!

We went to a strip mall and walked around all of the stores for a couple of hours. Nate and I picked up a make-your-own 6-pack...honestly, right now I don't recall what we got (oops), but I'll be blogging about them later :) We also got a couple of bottles of wine, but again, I'll have to let y'all in on that later tonight!

We stopped at Starbucks, where I picked up this Mango Macadamia Bar to split with everyone:

My parents and Nate got hot coffee:

And I got an iced black tea! I know it's snowing, but this is just what sounded good to me :) I like to get mine with no syrup and no water, with 2 Sweet N Low (yes, chemicals, but I don't get them except a couple times a year)

Upon getting home, I went for a 2 mile run while my parents made turkey sloppy joes, clementines, pears, and some chips and salsa:

This is just roasted turkey mixed with Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce:

We served them on those half-bun things with pickles (LOVE pickles), extra sauce, and the fruit and chips on the side:

It's a cold, rainy/snowy Tuesday here in the LBK, and we are snuggled up inside for some football, homemade minestrone soup (get ready for the pics in a few!), and perhaps some movies later on. I'm loving that I'm able to do that on a cold wet day...thank goodness for vacation!

Question: What's your absolute favorite thing to do on a cold, wet day?

Monday, December 28, 2009

I Like to Win

Something you should know about me: I HATE to lose. Abhor. Detest. Hate.

All of which is GREAT in sports, not so great in marriage. Nate and I are not allowed to play games against one another because of my "issues" with losing!

Anyway, tonight we ate dinner at West Crust Pizza in Lubbock:
It's totally delicious! They have some awesome combos they've made up:

Or you can build your own with a list of great toppings on the back:

Nate and I got the West Tuscan, with Italian sausage, spinach, and roasted red peppers:

While my parents got The Beast, with Italian sausage, pepperoni, and Canadian bacon:

We ended up all splitting the two pizzas, which was the perfect amount for 4 hungry people!

West Crust had some awesome decorations. I loved this seahorse:

And these awesome overhead lights:

And these spices were great for grinding on top of the pizzas:

Nate and I also split this root beer, which was good, but nothing out of the root beer ordinary:

And THEN we came home and played Sorry! I love this game, it's so fun and easy enough that you can talk and laugh and watch TV or whatever you want to do while you play!

And the reason why Nate and I aren't allowed to play against one another: we're bot extremely competitive and can be sore losers sometimes. Case in point: Nate called me a cheater and hid his cute face from me when I whooped his tail in the first round! (sorry, had to add that in there since I love to trash talk too!)

But he ended up getting in the last word, winning the last game. I guess I still love him! ;)

We're ending the evening with some jam crumble bars from last night, some football, and hopefully some cuddling :)

Hope y'all have a great night!

Question: What did y'all get for Christmas?