Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas, in pictures

While we didn't take as many pictures as we normally do (Mom, you are slacking), here are the pictures from the past couple of days that we did take.  Hope you had a very Merry Christmas! Remember, the Christmas season lasts until Jan 6th!

You must wear your paper crowns...and I got Tri Delta colors!

My mom's beautiful Christmas tree

Half of those were for me, the other half were from Will

My mom, Wayne and CC

The women of the family

My mom loved her candy cane slippers from Aunt Judy!

I do this...a lot


Finally, a nice picture

CC in her new sweater and Christmas bow

CC was a good girl this year!

Wrigley, so handsome!

Christmas wore her out, she slept for two days!

Sorry Starbucks

Sorry, Starbucks...you will be getting less of my money this year!  As much as I love your specialty drinks, most of the time, I just get a latte of some sort.  Now, thanks to my wonderful parents, I can make lattes at home, in my own kitchen, and the best part is, I don't have to work for it! 
Here is my fabulous new latte maker!
Mr. Coffee Latte Maker! Awesome present!!!

Looks very similar to a regular coffee maker, but it has a frother on the inside. You prep it like a regular coffee machine, but then put milk in the carafe.  The coffee drips like normal, but as it is dripping, the frother is stirring the milk and making a nice foam. 

I've put away my regular coffee machine and this will be on my countertop! 
Latte's every morning?  Yes, please!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

What's the deal with the Eucharist?

Recently, I was shown a YouTube video that really touched me.  I'm not one of those people who spend hours on YouTube, I rarely know the "most popular" videos (except Bon Qui Qui), and I usually only go on YouTube when there is a specific video I was told to watch. 

I have had some rocky faith times lately.  My belief in Christ has not waivered, and I'm actually more involved with my church than I have been since high school, but I've had a longing for more outward faith. I've never been one to really talk about my religion and I'm sometimes envious of people who can put into words what they believe and what they feel about their faith. 


This video really hit home for me and put into plain English why Catholics recieve the Eucharist each week and what it really means to us. 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ddtjLcqz2g
It's weeks like this that I'm glad I'm not in the classroom anymore!  From what I've heard from teachers and administrators, this week has been crazy and the kids are in rare form. 
I relish the fact that I get to sit in my office, close my door and turn on Pandora when I need to work on paperwork.  I love that I can go into classrooms for awhile but when things get out of control, I get to leave!  I like that if I am working with a student and they are refusing to comply, I get to bring them back to their teachers! 

Why didn't I get this job sooner?!?  Oh yeah...there was that Masters degree that had to be finished first...

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Alphabet Game

I saw this on another blog, and decided to take a break from my regular posting to play the Alphabet game!


A. Age: 29
B. Bed size: Queen
C. Chore that you hate: Dusting
D. Dogs: My CC girl
E. Essential start to your day: drinking water
F. Favorite color: pink
G. Gold or Silver: Silver
H. Height: 5' 8"
I. Instruments you play: Haha, the radio?!?
J. Job title: Diagnostician
K. Kids: My CC girl
L. Live: Texas
M. Mother’s name: Dianne
N. Nick names: L, La, Missy
O. Overnight hospital stays: NEVER!!!
P. Pet peeves: People who talk on their phone while at the table
Q. Quote from a movie: "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious"
R. Right or left handed: Lefty
S. Siblings: Spoiled brat only child
T. Truth or Dare: Truth
U. Ultimate Vacation: Vatican
V. Vegetable you hate: Brussel Sprouts
W. What makes you run late: hitting the snooze too many times
X. X-Rays you’ve had: teeth, ankle, wrist, back/neck
Y. Yummy food that you make: Everything I make is yummy!
Z. Zoo animal: Elephants
YOUR TURN!

Monday, December 5, 2011

lately

With all my thankfulness, I haven't reallly been posting about what we have been up to!  We have been very busy lately (even though we say we never do anything).  So here you go:

1.  Ziplining
A few months ago, I bought a Groupon to go on a ziplining tour in Roanoke for Will and me.  We have been talking about going for quite awhile, but all the places we looked at were down near Austin, so it would be a weekend trip.  DFW Adventure Park in Roanoke offers paintball, ziplining and other outdoor sports.  Even though the tour was short (about an hour), it was a nice "jumping off point. 



2.  Wedding
Two good friends of ours got married a few weeks ago!  While this wasn't the first wedding we attended together (see the Vegas post this summer), this was the best wedding we have attended together so  far!  There was even an Elvis impersonator!  How do you beat that?!? 

Adrienne, Greer, Amanda, Lindsay and me all dressed up!

See, Elvis!

Me and Will

This is why I ask him not to dance...

Me and my bestie

3.  ICE
Not like snow and ice, ICE at the Gaylord Hotel!  Normally, I run away from cold screaming and crying, but when it comes to ICE, I will pay  let Will pay to be in the COLD (6 degrees) for an extended period of time.  The hotel brings people over from China to carve and sculpt in the medium of ice!   The area that houses the sculptures has to be literally below freezing, obviously, so they give you these huge coats to wear, but I always layer up and wear a coat under their coat (plus the germs on their coats....) 
This year's theme was Shrek the Halls.  Here are a few shots!


Christmas for Village Idiots...that's about right


There's even an ICE slide!

It was sooo cold!!!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Decorations

Today is November 30th and I have NO Christmas decorations up! At first I just claimed laziness and the fact that we were traveling all during Thanksgiving week as the reasons I have no decorations up.  Now, I'm just refusing to put anything up until December! 

I was listening to The Catholic Channel on my new satellite radio (thanks, Daddy) the other day and they were talking about how we are NOT in the Christmas season, we are in the Advent season!  The Christmas season doesn't officially begin until Christmas Eve and goes through January 6th.  A woman called in and made an excellent analogy.  When a woman is pregnant, the family prepares for the new baby little by little,  decorating the nursery doesn't usually happen in one day.  This is how we can view the Advent season as well, decorate and prepare for Christmas little by little.  We shouldn't stress out about how much or how little we have accomplished by a certain time.  We should take it easy and realize that everything doesn't have to be perfect in one afternoon. So now, I'm adding that to the reason I have no decorations up, I'm going to do things little by little to prepare myself for the coming of Christ.   Thanks The Catholic Channel for putting it into perspective!

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 30

Today I am thankful that I have a job that I can leave at work.  I no longer have to take papers home to grade or worry about lesson plans or workouts.  Sure, I miss being in the classroom sometimes and I definitely miss coaching, but what I don't miss is taking work home! 

I am especially thankful for this today when I had a horrible migrane and was able to come home and lay down until I felt better and not feel bad because I have other things to work on!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 27

Today I am grateful that my parents taught me manners and class.  There are so many people that you see each and every day that display that they have no manners. It usually takes very little effort to be polite and it doesn't take anymore time than being rude.  People constantly amazing me with their rudeness, whether it's to strangers or people they know.  I'm glad I was taught to have class. 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 26

Today I am thankful that we arrived back home safely!  As much as I love traveling and seeing family, I LOVE being home and sitting on my couch or sleeping in MY bed.  I've slept in two different beds (and maybe a couch or two) over the past few days and I'm ready to be back in my own! 

I'm thankful that we had  relatively easy travels and we made it everywhere safely.  I'm thankful Will and I were able to spend some quality time (read 20+ hours in the car in 5 days) together and still love each other.

I'm not really thankful that I have to return to work on Monday, but I am thankful that in 3 weeks, I will have 2 more weeks off!  This time I'm staying right here, sleeping late, not wearing makeup and staying in my sweats as long as I damn well please!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 25

Today I am thankful for the holiday season.  I know we get too wrapped up in the preperations, decorations and the "commercialism" of it all, but the holiday season is such a blessing.  It gives us a reason to get together with our friends and family.  Sure, the gathering may be disguised as a tacky sweater Christmas party, but at least we are all together! 
People seem to be nicer around the holidays as well.  For some reason, people are more willing to help others at this time than any other time of the year.  People are nicer, more generous, more charitable and generally more welcoming.  Maybe it's because the true meaning behind the holidays is more "in your face".  I always think of the commercial for some type of baby item (diapers maybe?) that runs during Christmas time.  It shows lots of shots of babies sleeping and in the background children are singing, "Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me." Why do we have to wait until December to run ads like that, why can't they run all year round? Why do we have to remember "the reason for the season", why can't we remember the reason for ALL seasons?  I think if more people kept Christmas in their hearts all year round, we would be better off!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 24

Today, Thanksgiving Day, I'm thankful that I get to spend the day with people I love.  I know I will never have to spend a holiday alone; I will always have love surrounding me. 
I'm thankful for a table full of food and chairs full of family around that table. 

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 23

Today I am thankful for phone dates and unlimited texting plans.  I have many friends who don't live anywhere near me, and it's nice to sit down (who am I kidding, I never sit when I talk) and have a conversation with them every now and then.  I fear that these conversations are only going to start happening when something bad happens or something great happens and I need to become better at calling people just for the reason of hearing their voice.  Sometimes we wait too long between conversations and then there is just too much life to cram into the phone date. 

I'm also grateful for unlimited texting plans.  I don't get my cell phone bill on paper anymore, but when I did...holy goodness!  My bill would literally be 15-20 pages, and well over half of those pages were texts I sent and received! I would be broke if I didn't have unlimited.  While I will admit that I text far too often (like I said, I need to get better at calling), sometimes it's just easier. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 22

Today I'm thankful that I have friends who offer to watch my CC when I'm out of town.  It's so much easier to not travel with her.  She gets too restless in the car and doesn't have any place to walk around.  She won't chew on a bone, eat or drink in the car, so it makes for a long car trip. 

I'm also thankful for Interstates that make it easy to travel!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 21

Today I'm thankful for the PackLite app.  Yep, an app on my iPad made the list!  If you don't have the app, I highly suggest you look into it, it's free. 

See I'm one of those dorks who makes lists of what they need to pack days before actually packing, and then as I finally pack, I cross things off the list to make sure I included everything.  It usually works and I don't forget things at the last minute.  This app has pretty much everything included in the list and it even has the lists categorized.  It also has some rather funny items on the lists that make me laugh. You can also add your own items to the list to personalize it.  As you pack, you tap the item you put in the bag and it updates and give you a total % packed. 

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 20

I'm thankful that I am able to help others.  I'm able to buy extra food at the grocery store to donate or to buy gifts for an Angel Tree donation.  I'm able to donate clothes I no longer wear to make room in my closet for new clothes that I am fortunate to purchase. 

The homily at mass this morning was helping others who are less fortunate than you are, buy providing food, shelter, clothes or healing.  “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ Matthew 25:40. 

I am thankful that I am able to follow the gospel in this way. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 19

Today I am thankful for my ability to cook!  I love cooking and trying new recipes, testing things out, making them my own!  I enjoy cooking and baking for others too!  Somehow it relaxes me, following steps, being organized, seeing your final product and sharing it with people you love! 

I especially like making things from scratch, I get so much more satisifaction making things on my own than using a box or a mix.  Plus I think it tastes so much better!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 18

Today  I am thankful for my team of diags.  They are an awesome group of ladies who are always there to lend a hand and give advice!  I am very blessed to work with such knowledgeable women. 






I know this was short but my brain is a little fried after this week...this is all I could muster. 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 17

Today I am thankful for my rest-warmer. 

For those of you who are uneducated in rest-warmers, it's like a mattress pad and an electric blanket all rolled into one!  Pretty much the greatest invention ever!  Mine has dual controls, so I can turn one side up high and make it hot and keep the other side cooler, that way when I get cold, roll over, when I get hot, roll back over!  It's pretty much perfect! 

If you don't have a rest-warmer, I highly suggest you run right out and get one.  You can get them at Target or at Macys!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 16

Today I am thankful for my independence.  I don't mean the kind given to me by others willing to lay down their life for our country, I mean the ability to rely on myself. 

I learned the value of independence at a very early age, after my parents' divorce when I was 5.  My mom and I moved back to Louisiana and she had to find her own path in the world and raise a young child at the same time.  I always knew I wanted to be self-sufficient and know that I could take care of myself no matter what.  I wanted to stand on my own two feet and blaze my own trail. 

I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I can take care of myself.  I have learned so many life lessons since I've left college and started life on my own.  Of course I've had help from others, especially my wonderful family, but I know that if I had to, I could hold my own and I love that about myself. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 15

Today I am thankful that I have always had a job that challenges me, each and every day. 

As a teacher, it doesn't matter how planned out your lesson plans are, how many time you have counted the copies you've made, how many computers you have logged on to save time, how organized your materials are, how wonderful your powerpoint is...SOMETHING WILL GO WRONG!  You will get a new student that day and not have enough materials, your projecter bulb will decided to go out, the district network will decide to fail, so you can't get to all of your wonderful lesson that is housed safely in your on-line lesson planner, you get the picture. 

There is always something that can go wrong in the classroom, and most often, it does.  You have to keep calm, keep order and pretend you know what you are doing so you don't look like a major dork in front of 30 7th graders. 

With my new position, I'm still learning every day.  I'm learning how to manage my time without bells, I'm learning (and loving) how to organize my office so that I can easily access things when I need them, I'm learning how to interact with elementary school children (something that's always scared me).  I'm also learning to let go of my pride and ask questions of others.  If you know me, you know I like to pretend to know just about everything and feel uncomfortable when I don't know the answer.  Normally, I would try and try to figure out the answer and finally break down and ask.  I'm learning that it is ok to ask from the beginning...saves quite a bit of time in the long run. 

I'm also learning that things are changing faster than I can keep up with the change, and communication is a key factor in that change.  Some people know what's going on, some think they know but really don't, and some have no clue.  Put all of those minds in one room and things get a little crazy.  As soon as I get wind of new information, I have gotten into the habit of printing it out and pinning it to my office wall...soon my wall will be "re-wallpapered", but it works for me. 

I'm thankful that I don't do dull, mundane work.  I have a job that challenges me mentally, and I enjoy learning new things each day!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 14

I'm so thankful that I chose to attend college at Auburn University!  I honestly never imagined when I started looking at colleges, I would fall in love with a university as much as I love Auburn. 

From the moment I stepped onto Auburn's campus, I knew this is where I would spend the next four five years of my early adulthood.  The campus, of course, is beautiful, but the spirit of Auburn is what drew me in!  Auburn doesn't just have loyal fans, we have a loyal family, and it runs much deeper than football games on Saturdays in the fall.  In comes in supporting others in the time of need, even if you don't know them, but you know they are part of the Auburn family.  It comes in helping your most hated rival in a time of destruction, because that is the right thing to do.  It comes in taking pride not just in your teams, but in your university as a whole, and always wanting it to grow and flourish. 

While at Auburn, I found the perfect sorority for me, the perfect friends for me, the perfect major(s) for me and the perfect life for me!  I truly enjoyed my college experience and honestly wouldn't change one thing about those years.  Each year brought on new friends, new experiences and new challenges, each one helping me to get to this point in my life. 

Going away to college helped me to realize there is more to life than the little bubble I had happily grown up in.  I realized there are different kinds of people who had different kinds of opinions, and that was ok.  Being on my own, without the comfort of people I had known my entire life, made me step out of my box and really find out who I was as an individual.  I learned responsibility and self-sufficiency, I learned about who I wanted to be.  I also learned that in the absence of family, you create and surround yourself with a new family, ones who aren't related to you by blood.  I am blessed that I was able to find those people at Auburn, women and men who are still in my life, and who I hope will always be in my life. 

Auburn University has given me so much and I am forever proud to bleed orange and blue and be an Auburn Tiger. 

I believe that this is a practical world and that I can count only on what I earn.
Therefore, I believe in work, hard work.

I believe in education, which gives me the knowledge to work wisely
and trains my mind and my hands to work skillfully.

I believe in honesty and truthfulness,
without which I cannot win the respect and confidence of my fellow men.

I believe in a sound mind, in a sound body and a spirit that is not afraid,
and in clean sports that develop these qualities.

I believe in obedience to law because it protects the rights of all.

I believe in the human touch,
which cultivates sympathy with my fellow men and mutual helpfulness and brings happiness for all.

I believe in my Country, because it is a land of freedom and because it is my own home, and that I can best serve that country by "doing justly, loving mercy, and walking humbly with my God."

And because Auburn men and women believe in these things, 
I BELIEVE IN AUBURN AND LOVE IT!
-George Petrie (1945)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 13

Today I am thankful for my education.  I am very fortunate to not only have a high school diploma and a Bachelors degree, I also (as of recently) have a Masters degree. 

My family always stressed education, even from an early age.  Not trying your hardest or not being prepared was simply unacceptable in my house.  I am very lucky that so many people in my family have college degrees and encouraged me to pursue my own. 

Before moving or buying a house, my mom always considered what schools were in the area, because she knew I had to go to good schools where I would be challenged.  She and Wayne even enrolled me in private school for high school, because they knew my classes would be more rigorous and would better prepare me for college.  I honestly think 100% of my graduating class went to college after high school (and I think a large percent graduated from college and have higher degrees), so it was always expected of us to want to keep learning.  My high school teachers were not only concerned about giving us the best education they could, they were also concerned with teaching us to live the Catholic life.  I didn't realize until I had my own classroom how freeing it is to talk openly about your faith. 

I am thankful that I could attend a great university that prepared me to go into the field of teaching.  I had amazing professors who were not only knowledgeable, but really cared about us as students and helping us to succeed.  Many of my professors got to know us as people, not just people who sat in a classroom three times a week.  I am also thankful for the other girls in my classes.  We supported each other, not only in the classroom, but in life as well.  I still turn to them and know they will be there for me. 

I am thankful that the Masters program I chose to dive into was flexible enough for me to not only teach full-time, but also coach.  The program being mostly on-line let me go through assignments and lectures when I was able to, rather than have to build my life around a class or a test. 


I am extremly thankful that I got through all of my education debt free!  I know so many people who, even after 10+ years, are paying off student loans.  I was really afforded a luxury when my parents were able to pay for my high school education, college education, and even help me pay for my post-graduate education.  Looking back, that shows how much they valued me getting an education, and they were willing to save and sacrifice to make sure that happened. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 12

Today I am thankful that I have ALWAYS had a comfortable roof over my head.  Never in my life have I ever had to wonder where I would sleep, would i have a bed, would I have food to eat and would I be warm enough.  I have always had a room to myself and a space to keep all my belongings.  I have always felt safe and secure where I lived.  I've never been scared that when I go to bed at night or when I leave my house during the day, that something would happen.  Based on that fact alone, I know I have been blessed. 

I have so many comforts and so much more than I need in my home.  I know I am very lucky to have a job that allows me to not only buy things that I need to survive, but also to purchase things that make my home a home.  I'm also blessed to have a family that helped me buy my first home and really make it a space that I can be proud of and feel comfortable and safe in.  My parents and grandparents not only helped me find my first house, they helped me with the down payment and helped me furnish it with amazing furniture.  My dad has made all the furniture in my bedroom, and I know that is something that I will always treasure.  My mom and Wayne have bought me or helped me pick out my dining room furniture and my living room furniture.  

I'm also thankful that I get to celebrate two blessings today: Nicole's baby shower for her baby boy who will be born in January, and witnessing the sacrament of marriage between Lisa and Charlie this evening!  A full day of celebrating new beginnings!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 11

I'm thankful for the freedom I have!  I'm thankful that I have the freedom to choose what I want to wear every morning, the freedome to choose what I want to study, the freedome to speak my mind without fear of ramifications from the law.  I'm thankful that I get to choose my religion, my job and the people I surround myself with. 

All of this, of course, couldn't happen if others, much less selfish that I am, had not choosen to fight to give me this freedom.  I'm thankful that there are men and women who are willing to lay their life on the line because they want to proctect the freedom that others have ensured for us. 

Happy Veteran's Day and thank you to all those who serve!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 10

Today I'm thankful that my job provides me health insurance!  I don't particularly like going to the doctor or taking medicine, but I do know that it is necessary in some cases and because of my insurance, I rarely have to pay out of pocket expenses!  I know many people don't have insurance and don't get the health care they need because they cannot afford to see a doctor.  I am so blessed that I have never known this feeling. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 9

Today I am extremly thankful for my CRHP 4 (Christ Renews His Parish) sisters.  While I have been in Louisiana, I have been wrapped in their prayers and thoughts.  I have recieved countless emails from these ladies all last week and this week, praying for my safe travel and for my grandfather's surgery and results. 
Monday nights have become such a blessing for me, more than I thought they ever could be. We came together as 36 strangers who knew each other on the surface or recognized each other, but didn't know much else.  Now we are forever bonded through each other's lives!  It's been such a beautiful journey so far and I know it will only get better! 
I can't wait to share another retreat weekend with my CRHP 4 sisters and meet the CRHP 5 sisters!

I am also thankful that my grandfather's biopsy came back clear!  No more cancer!!! 
A HUGE thank you to everyone who prayed for my grandfather and who called/texted/emailed me while I was in Lafayette.  I so appreciate you keeping my family in your thoughts! 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 8

I'm thankful for the friends I have that have gotten me through many tough times.  Whether they live in the same place I live, or live thousands of miles away, I know I always have people I can call who will be there for me when I need it. 

They want what's best for me, they tell me when I'm being a bitch or an idiot, they love me even when I'm wrong (well, that one time I was wrong, haha, kidding!). 

We have been there for each other through so many life situations, both bitter and sweet and each one of them has guided my path and shaped me in some way. 

"Because I knew you, I have been changed for good!"~ Wicked

Thank you for changing me for the better!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 6 and 7

Well, it's only day 7 and already I've messed up...but I have good reason!  Yesterday (day 6) I drove from home to here (Lafayette, old home) for my grandfather's surgery.  He finished bladder cancer treatments about a month ago and his scans came back inconclusive, so they wanted to biopsy to make sure everything was ok.  Surgery went well this morning and we were back home resting by noon!  He's been a great patient so far, following all directions and drinking lots of water. 

So without further adieu:
Day 6~ I'm thankful for a reliable vehicle that takes me where I need to be, especially when that place I need to be is one (or three) states over.  Oh, and I'm thankful it doesn't guzzle gas...gas here is so much more expensive!

Day 7~ I'm thankful for the amazing food in Louisiana!  It's amazing I'm still alive after living in Texas for so long and being deprived of really fresh seafood and places like Meche's, Deano's, Olde Tyme and Judice Inn.  And no mother, I haven't eaten all that yet...but I still have two days here to check off the list!
I'm also thankful that tomorrow I will be running around town collecting things to bring back like boudain, Keller's cookies and Blue Runner red beans...my mouth is watering just thinking about it!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 5

Today I am thankful for the opportunity to know all of my grandparents.  I have several friends that never got that chance.  Not only did I meet all of my grandparents, I had a unique relationship with them and I have memories I will cherish forever.  I am lucky enough that my grandparents were there to watch me grow up and help to mold me into the person I am today.  My dad's parents passed away when I was in college, and my stepdad's dad passed away a few years ago, but I still have both of my maternal grandparents and my stepdad's mother in my life. 

Friday, November 4, 2011

Dessert Night

Last night, I invited my good friend Greer over for some wine, desserts and girl time.  The best part of course was the time we just spent hanging out and talking, but I must say, the desserts were great too! 

Since I've been a little obsessed with Pinterest lately, I decided to try a couple of new recipes out, and I did a stellar job, if I do say so myself! 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Turnovers

I used frozen puff pastry.  Make sure you defrost it first! While it's defrosting preheat your oven to 400. 


Unfold the pastry and then cut into 3 strips- then cut the 3 strips in half so you have 6 pieces.  Place a graham cracker and some peanut butter on each piece. 

Add chocolate pieces on top of the peanut butter- I used dark chocolate, but that's just my personal preference. 

Dampen the edges of the pastry with a little water (I just dipped my finger in water and ran it along the edges).  Fold over, "seal" the pastry and crimp with a fork. 

Brush each pastry with egg wash and pop them into your oven for about 15 minutes.   
I topped them with marshmellow cream (heated in the microwave for a few seconds to soften), but they are so good you don't need to top with anything!

S'mores Crossiants
I made these at the same time, so my oven was already preheated. 
I used Pilsbury crossiants in the can...it's much easier than making your own. 
 

Roll them up like a normal crossiant and bake until golden brown! 


I don't have pictures of what they look like when everything comes out of the oven...Greer came over and we got caught up in chit-chatting. 
Trust me, they looked GOOD!!!
Happy baking!

Roll out the crossiants and place chocolate and marshmellows on each one~ again, I used dark chocolate.

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 4

Today I am thankful for my Camp family! 
I've posted many times about my experiences at Camp and how wonderful and special this place is to me.  The thing that makes it the most special is the people who give their heart to it.  The staff who run Camp are some of the best people I've ever met, the volunteers who give their time are some of the most selfless people I know and the campers are some of the strongest people in the world. 

As volunteers, we stay in touch with each other throughout the year, we celebrate together, pray together, mourn together and always support each other.  We count down the days until we can see our family again. 

As campers, most of them can't wait until they turn 19 so they can give back to an organization that has given them some much.  Camp supports these kids from treatment through recovery/remission, and even helps with college tuition. 


I am so blessed to be associated with an organization that has given so much to so many wonderful individuals. 

video

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 3

Today I am thankful for my CC girl! 

From the moment I handed over those 2 $20 bills, I was in love.  I mean really...who could resist that face?!?


Love my CC girl!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart 2

Today I am thankful that God brought me an amazing man whom I love.  He takes care of me, spoils me, and is much, much more than I deserve!  I know how annoying I can be, and living on my own for over 10 years, I have kinda become set in my ways (I have NO clue where I get that from, Mom). 

He puts up with my ridiculousness and does it with a smile on his face (most of the time).

He takes charge when needed, but has no problem handing over the reins to someone else. 

He listens when I am frustrated, and doesn't try to "solve" all my problems.  He lets me vent and asks if there is anything he can do...I love that about him. 

He loves me unconditionally.  This is not an easy feat, people. 

He cares for my family and asks about them often. 

He supports my decisions and beliefs, even if he doesn't share them.

And I'm thankful to Ann for introducing us! 


Oh and I'm quite thankful for warm weather...I'm not ready to pull out the sweaters yet!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Give Thanks with a Grateful Heart

Since it's November, I thought I'd start the list of what I am thankful for.  My goal is to post once a day with one thing that I'm thankful for in my life.  Hopefully I will continue this in my personal life off this blog, but this may make be commit to it for 30 days. 

November 1st
My family.  I have a very supportive family who has been there for me for the past 29 years.  I have been blessed with people who have given me more than I have ever asked for and have challenged me and pushed me in ways I never dreamed possible.  I never had to worry about anything being provided for me, in fact I always had MORE than necessary.  I was never deprived of anything that I wanted, and to this day I'm still not.

My parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins have always been there for me when I needed advice or a shoulder to cry on.  They have helped me move (multiple times), supported me in school, believed in my decisions and believed in me.  I certainly would not be where I am today if they were not in my life!

Things I'm not sorry for

So I got this idea from my fabulous friend Danielle.  She created a post titled "I'm sorry I'm not sorry", so here is my list of things I will NEVER apologize for:

1.  Not liking inconsistency, especially in people.  Don't change with the wind and don't change unless you have great reasons to and can defend those reasons.

2.  I will correct your grammar if you speak incorrectly.  I taught English for six years, it's in my blood. 

3.  Defending the teaching profession- As a former teacher and a person who has many teacher friends, it is a hard profession.  I don't care what age or subject you are teaching, there is nothing easy about working in education.  If a teacher thinks teaching is easy, then they need to leave the profession because they are doing the kids a disservice.  Many of the teachers that I know work just as hard during the 9 months of the school year as others who work year round. 

4.  I think people should have to work with children before having them. 

5.  I don't think going to church makes you a "good (insert your personal religious sect here)".  I don't think not going to church makes you a bad person. 

6.  While I like facebook, I think some people share WAY too much and need to stop.  Very few people care what you had for dinner every night of the week. 

7.  I am old-fashioned, in more ways than one. 

8.  I believe in fixing our own country before looking outward.  ( I kinda stole this one from Danielle, because I wholeheartedly believe it). 

9.  If you really don't like drama, then don't cause it.  I've found most people who say, "Drama seems to follow me," are the ones who create the drama in the first place. 

10.  People need to leave "home" and experience other things.  If you still want to return "home" more power to you, but there is more out there. 

This is the "short list", of course there are more, but that's for another time!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Hullaballo Caneck Caneck

It was quite an exciting weekend in my life...we ventured south on 35 to College Station! 
Earlier this year, when Texas A&M decided to join the bit boys in the SEC, my dad made the comment that he would like to see a game at Kyle Field.  So Will got on-line, bought tickets and my dad flew up for the weekend! 

He arrived on Thursday afternoon, I had to work on Friday, so Will and my dad hung out for the day.  Friday evening, we finalized plans to leave at 8 am on Saturday morning.  See when we bought the tickets, the game was scheduled for 2:30.  My dad even checked on Wednesday afternoon and the game was still set for 2:30.  Those sneaky Aggies though...

Saturday morning, we load up the car and head south on 35.  We made it past Waco with no major issues, traffic was light, it was a beautiful day, it seemed nearly perfect.  My dad made a comment about gametime and Will decided to "triple check".  It's never good when someone who is checking on something says "uh-oh".  Game time had changed to 11 AM, and it was now being televised by FX...sigh...

At that point we realized there was nothing we could do but miss the first quarter of the game.  If you know me, I HATE missing kickoff, so I was annoyed with myself for not checking on Friday. 

The rest of the drive was easy, we parked, rode the shuttle to the stadium and entered with no issues.  We took a potty break, grabbed a snack from consessions and made our way to our seats. We thought we were making great time as the game was still in the 1st quarter.

 As we looked down the row (of course we were on the opposite side of the row), we realized that there wasn't room for us to sit.  My dad found his spot and quickly claimed it, but Will and I were stuck standing in the middle of the row.  Two very nice girls scooted over so we could sit, but did warn us that their boyfriends were coming back soon and those were there seats.  We asked them to get the usher when the boys came up.  Apparently two groups of people decided to switch seats, but not everyone had tickets in the row and the groups were not equal.  The usher very kindly made the idiots who cannot sit in the correct seats move. Of course they fussed and grumbled, but I bluntly kindly reminded them that we paid for our seats too and we deserved to sit in the seats that we paid for. 



Whew, all of this before halftime! 

The halftime show was great!  I really enjoyed watching the band and how intricate their choregraphy was.  All of the band members are also in the Corps of Cadets, so everything was instep and regimented.  If you haven't seen a halftime show at Kyle Field, I highly suggest it!  Be sure to keep an eye on the tuba players!

The rest of the game went off smoothly, well except for the whole A&M blowing another lead thing.  They really need to learn to play a full football game before next year or they may regret joining the SEC, especially the SEC West...

We got to see the campus, and while nothing holds a candle to my Auburn's campus, it was a beautiful campus.  We drove around, found a place to eat, then stopped in Aggieland Outfitters to get some Aggie gear (for the men, not for me). 

All in all it was a great trip!  We had some hiccups, but it was a beautiful day, an exciting game and I had some great company!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Easy Peasy - Pinterest style

During the week, I usually have a very quick breakfast like a bowl of cereal or strawberries and cream oatmeal.  On the weekends though, I like to something with a little more "oomph".  I have started making pancakes or waffles and making extra to take me through the week, just so I have something different. 

A couple of weeks ago, I found a cool recipe on Pinterest that I wanted to try.  It was a version of sticky buns, but much, much less work! I couldn't wait to try it!

Like any good cook, I gathered all my ingredients first:
3 tablespoons of butter- melted
1/2 cup syrup
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tubes of the Pilsbury Grands Junior biscuits
A bundt pan (or any circular pan) greased

Preheat oven to 375

Mix the melted butter and syrup together

Mix the brown sugar and the cinnamon together

Pour in half of the syrup/butter mixture, then sprinkle in half of the sugar/cinnamon mixture
Place biscuits in, overlapping so they fill in all the pan
Pourin rest of syrup/butter mixture and sprinkle rest of sugar/cinnamon mixture

Cook until biscuits are done (took about 20 minutes)

Flip over onto a plate and enjoy!

These were soooo very good and soooo very easy!  I can see this being kid-friendly too!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

A visit with an "old" friend

I've known Nicole since we were freshmen in high school.  We had several classes together and somehow we ended up on the swim team together (although neither of us remember how we actually ended up joining swim team).  We became fast friends and have remained friends ever since.   
See, this is us in high school...Nicole is on the left, I'm in the center...we were cute, weren't we?  

Anyway, we visited each other in college (she went to LSU) and always found time for dinner or something when we were home from school. 

After she graduated from college, she got married and became an adult and stuff.  Her husband moved her around a lot for his job (luckily she is a teacher and easily found work each time they moved).  Each time I talked to her it seemed like it was from a new place.  But eventually, his job landed them in Texas...about 30 minutes from me!  I was thrilled! 

We don't get together as often as we would like to because we both have busy schedules, but when we do get to hang out, it's always a great time!  Sometimes I go to her, sometimes she comes to me, sometimes we meet in the middle!  This past January, another one of our high school friends, Kellee, came to visit me for the weekend and we (Nicole, Kellee, Alli ~ another high school friend who also lives in Dallas, and me) had a great girls night out!
This summer, Nicole and I had been playing phone tag and trying to schedule a get together for quite some time, but with our schedules, one of us was always busy or out of town or something.  When we finally were able to make it work, the first thing I asked her when we sat down for lunch was, "How are you?"  I was expecting a response like "Loving summer" or "Well rested", but no, I get, "Well, I'm pregnant!"  I was soooo excited!  Even more excited when I found out a few weeks later that she would be having a little boy!  A fun little "nephew" to play with!!!  (Hey, I'm the closest "family" she's got!). 

Anyway, I invited Nicole over today to watch the LSU/AUBURN game and just hang out.  We had a great time and I finally got to see her preggo belly!  I can hardly wait for her shower in a few weeks...I have the cutest gift picked out! 
And yes...I must point out that Nicole will turn 30 before I will...only one day before I will, but she's still "older" than me! Hahahahahaha!

Oh and GO RANGERS!!!