Monday, November 19, 2012


So this weekend I had the privilege of celebrating the 1st Birthdays of 2 adorable little boys, an old roommate's little boy and my boyfriend's nephew. 

There was lots of cake, lots of gifts, lots of fun and lots of cuteness.

One of the little boys is the son of a close friend from college so it was wonderful seeing college friends that are so dear to my heart :)

I'm excited for Thanksgiving. I'm excited to spend sometime with family and friends and enjoy a bit of R&R.

Friday, November 2, 2012

7 Quick Takes (vol. 12)

 ~~ 1 ~~
I made these last night. They are amazing, you should definitely try them (click on the title for the recipe :), especially if you like pecan pie and chocolate and the two together. I just had chopped pecans so I skipped the first step and it still turned out amazing.

~~ 2 ~~

Our little Hero Masquerade Halloween party went well, it was a small gathering but tons of food, awesome costumes and wonderful people.  The "hosts" are below (Rosie the Riveter and some heroic knight, can't remember at the moment who exactly my brother chose to be).

~~ 3 ~~
Happy All Souls Day and Happy late All Saints Day!

~~ 4 ~~
I have been doing a lot of cleaning/organizing lately. I can actually see my desk and sewing table again, it's amazing. Anyways, I've discovered that it is extremely easy to get side tracked especially when I run across awesome stuff like the poem below....

"Our Rodgers, Who art in Lambeau, Hallowed be thine arm. Thy bowl will come, It will be won. In Dallas as it is in Lambeau. And give us this Sunday, Our weekly win. And give us many touchdown passes. But do not let others pass against us. Lead us not into frustration, But deliver us to the valley of the sun. For thine is the MVP, the best of the NFC, and the glory of the Cheeseheads, now and forever. Go get'em. Amen." from here
~~ 5 ~~
I'm excited we're in the midst of the "Holiday Season". I am not ready for Christmas music, but I am excited for Thanksgiving, then Christmas and the New Years. Ready? No. Excited? Yes.

~~ 6 ~~
I have very few plans for this weekend. That's always exciting. I love the unknown possibilities. Sunday is set. Mass, teaching and then spend the rest of the day with the boyfriend, but Friday night and Saturday...oh the possibilities!
~~ 7 ~~
In honor of Halloween here's an oldie but a goodie :) Enjoy!
 Alright, that's all from me for this lovely Friday. Enjoy the weekend! 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Friday, October 26, 2012

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 11)

So I feel like it's been a while since I've done this, so here's a lot of randomness from me to you:)
~~ 1 ~~
My older brother has been living with me for the past couple of months. We're throwing a hero masquerade party tonight. It will be epic. He's decked out the apartment with pictures of "heroes" real and fictional including people like Xena, Gandhi, the Planeteers, Mother Teresa, the X-Men, Rosa Parks and Robin Hood. If you were coming what hero would you dress up as?

~~ 2 ~~

The weather has been kind of crazy here. 70's for most of the week and now it's in the 40s and acting a bit more like fall. I do love fall. Me and my boyfriend went hiking last weekend (both Saturday and Sunday, I loved it!) and got to enjoy the lovely fallish weather and the end of the colors.

~~ 3 ~~
I finished "Heaven is Here" by Stephanie Nielson (of NieNie Dialogues) on my trip. I cried, a lot and I laughed, and I marveled at her strength and her faith and her family's. If you haven't read it you need to.

~~ 4 ~~
See this strange looking pile. Well it's delicious in case you were wondering and it only has 3 ingredients. My boyfriend saw them make it on a show he was watching and decided we needed to make it to eat while watching (or rather listening to since my dumb tv didn't get the right station) the football game last Sunday. It's bacon, brown sugar and cayenne pepper. Candied bacon with a kick. He baked it for 10 minutes, flipped the bacon and put more brown sugar on the flipped side.
~~ 5 ~~
How cool is this?! Check out these awesome animals painted on hands.
~~ 6 ~~

I don't know how you feel about Taylor Swift, but I really like some of her new stuff (not all of it), especially this song. Definitely not country, but I like it.
~~ 7 ~~
I'm going to a friend's wedding tomorrow. I love weddings, and it's close by, which is awesome. I'm not in it so I get to sit back and enjoy the beautiful sacrament from the pew. It should be fun.
 Alright, that's all from me for this lovely Friday. Enjoy the weekend! 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I Took a Little Trip...

So I took a little road trip with my parents, a two week road trip to be exact. We headed out west to visit my sister in California and had some grand adventures along the way. We drove through 11 states and although I am glad I did it, it is also nice to know that I don't have to do it again. Next time I will fly to my favorite stops :)

Here are some quick random highlights/entertaining stops from the journey, no particular order:

If you're driving through South Dakota there's not really any way to miss it. The signs are everywhere, and about the only signs for miles.


 Did you know there used to be active volcanoes in the United States? Well there were.

 Did you know that you can go to Idaho and walk around the lava and look at the effects of a volcano that erupted 2000 years ago? Well you can.

Doesn't my mom look like she's in a hazmat suit?

Have you been to Yellowstone? It's breathtaking.

Old Faithful is amazing to see, but it was a bit funny to see the time it would erupt posted in the middle of the visitor's center and rows of benches set up for spectators.

 We saw our first bear before we even entered the park. It put us in the mood for some good animal watching.

 I will definitely be back to Yellowstone, hopefully spend a few days, do some hiking and horseback riding.

 See that bridge? Well if you look out over the canyon this is what you see...
 Amazing! And yes, that is a golf course. Who knew Idaho was so beautiful?

California Awesomeness
 Friday we went to Santa Cruz and stopped at this great local ice cream shop that makes up their own flavors. Dad had balsamic vinegar and fig (which we all tried, of course) and mom had chocolate caramel sea salt (which I also had but in a root beer float) Tanya had some other random float.

My sister and brother-in-law got remarried in the Catholic church, while we were there.
The above picture is outside the mission church Holy Cross where they were married.

 After the ceremony. We matched nicely.

 Everyone. Small weddings are nice.

Yosemite was beautiful too. There weren't animals everywhere like Yellowstone but the mountains were amazing and so white against the sky.

I'd love to go back and go hiking by the waterfalls (we were too late in the season for the falls to be falling).
We spent the day walking and admiring. Reading warning after warning about black bears, but never seeing any.

 So there's this island in the middle of the Great Salt Lake.

 It's beautiful, and filled with all sorts of fun animals.

 Bison crossing the road. It happens here, a lot. They have like 500 bison, just chilling.
 Can you find the horizon line? Cool huh?

We made lots of other stops, like staying at The Virginian Hotel in Medicine Bow, Wyoming (you'd have to be a western fan to appreciate that one), visited Buffalo Bill's retirement home (Scout's Rest Ranch in Nebraska, who knew?!), being a 3rd generation Danish immigrant we had to stop at the Danish Immigrant Museum in Iowa. Yeah there were lots of stops like that.

Well that's my trip in a nutshell. It was fun. We live in an amazing country. You should check it out!

Friday, September 14, 2012

7 Quick Takes (vol. 10)

It has been a fabulous few weeks, so I'll share a bit of the randomness with all of you lovelies :)

~~ 1 ~~

See these two adorable boys? Well I enjoyed a lovely afternoon celebrating their Birthdays. Check out some of Bonnie's fabulous creations for the day here.

~~ 2 ~~

So Monroe, Wisconsin hosts the Green County Cheese Days every other year. I think I have to go.
 the theme song, yes it's awesome!
~~ 3 ~~

I love fall :) I am currently drinking a caramel apple spice from Starbucks and it's like drinking an apple pie. Love it. I am ready for apple picking and corn mazes, campfires and fall colors. Oh! And homemade soups and stews :) and hoodies, I can go on, but I will spare you.

~~ 4 ~~
The church I work for had our annual parish picnic last Sunday. It was a wonderful afternoon of food and games. I love it because everyone is always in a good mood, no complaints, just enjoyment of the weather, and each other.

 Our two great priests

Maynard (Madison Mallards Mascot) doing his usual pose   ~    A bit of dining music       

~~ 5 ~~

I just watched Sundays at Tiffany's. It was super cute, great if you're in the mood for a Hallmark or lifetime-esque movie (evidently it actually is a Lifetime movie). I totally get in those moods.

~~ 6 ~~

So even though I am no longer in school, don't teach and don't have children in school, life still seems to follow the "school schedule". Two of the young adult groups I am in are starting up new books. So for the next few weeks I will be rereading Style, Se.x and Substance along with The Screwtape Letters. I really excited to discuss both books.

~~ 7 ~~
It's Friday and I have no plans set in stone, which means it will be a fabulously packed weekend doing a bit of everything :)

 Alright, that's all from me for this lovely Friday. Enjoy the weekend! 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Little Food Post

I've had a bit of free time, so I have been happily spending it in the kitchen. I was talking with my friends a few weeks ago about the challenge of using what you already have on hand and cooking fabulous (new) recipes with those ingredients instead of finding the recipe and then having to go out and buy the ingredients. Liking this idea, and what it would mean to the many neglected odds and ends in my pantry, I decided to do just that. Below are some of the recipes that came from my odd collection of ingredients. I'm big on bread, can you tell?

I didn't use Lauren's pizza dough recipe, but instead used my simple recipe from my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. Dipped it in some pizza sauce and it was pretty amazing :)

This recipe is ridiculously easy. It's fabulous for that can of beer that someone brought over to your place and left and has been sitting in your fridge for months...This would be amazing with a fresh bowl of soup.

So see these 6 beautiful muffins? That's all this recipe makes! It's amazing. I'm always nervous about doubling or halving new recipes, afraid that my proportions will be off. Uma has already done the dirty work and here's a lovely recipe if there's only one or two of you in the house. I used butter milk instead of regular milk (yes, ridiculous that that's what I had on hand) and of course added a bit more vanilla :)

If you've got fresh herbs and want a very flavorful side, this recipe is great. I did not use anchovy fillets (shockingly I did not have any on hand) but did have capers, that are who knows how old, that were dieing to be used. Also, I feel like I never have the right type of mustard for recipes. I just used plain old yellow mustard in this recipe and it turned out quite nicely.

How about all of you? Any clean out the pantry recipes you've found and love?