Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Wordless Wednesday


My husband, Matt, is blessed to have some really good guy friends.  One of these guys is Ryan...

...a friend from high school
...and college.

A friend that gave a best man's speech at our wedding six years ago...

...and a friend Matt was able to do the same for this past weekend.

Congrats, Ryan & Christi!  We love you guys and sincerely apologize for the lack of wedding pictures in this post.  Chasing a 1-year-old around and being drugged up with cold medicine didn't really allow me to get the pictures I wanted.  This is the only one I got:

...though I think it sums you up quite well :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Blogging for Books

I confess..I've struggled to finish a book since graduating from grad school.  It's not that I haven't read in five years, but getting to the end of any book has been somewhat daunting.  So, I've found something that will not only provide the books to read, but will keep me accountable to reading them (and reading them well!).  Blogging for Books is a book review program through Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing that sends bloggers books for free.  The catch is that you must post a review of that book within 30 days of receiving it.  Not bad, huh?

So, I'm being shipped Shattered Dreams by Larry Crabb, a book I've been wanting to read for awhile.  There were about 25 books offered to me to review.  A few that I'm planning to read in the future include:

Click here to check out this program and to sign up.  Wish me luck on my new reading adventure!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Christmas Picture Fail

About two weeks ago, I forced both my daughter and dog to do a Christmas photoshoot so I could order our Christmas cards.  I literally took 100 pictures.  Luckily, I did get a few cute ones.  I also got a few like this:

The wind is blowing 100 mph and you want us to keep our eyes open?

I don't even want to know what was going through her mind.

I think I tried making her sit in a pile of pokey pine needles. 
Nice going, mom.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Banana Bread

One of my fondest college memories is that of making banana bread with one of my roommates, Kristin.  Yes, we had the same name.  And yes, it sometimes got confusing when the phone rang and the person on the other end had no idea who they were talking to.  More often, I would get super confused and end up talking to one of Kristin's friends for awhile, afraid to tell them that I wasn't her.

Kristin had this super easy recipe for banana bread that I've kept over the years because not only does it turn out super yummy, but it is super easy to make for this non-baking girl.  Thought I'd share it :)

3/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 c. mashed bananas (about 3)
3/4 c. vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 c. flour
1/2 c. chopped nuts (optional)
1 t. baking soda
2 t. vanilla
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and grease loaf pan.  Mix sugar, bananas, oil and eggs in large bowl.
Stir in remaining ingredients.

Pour into pan.  Bake until toothpick comes out clean (about 60 minutes).

Let cool 10 minutes, loosen sides, remove from pan and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


We spent our Thanksgiving in Tallahassee this year, visiting Matt's family, stuffing our faces with yummy food, and watching TONS of football.  I didn't take as many pictures as planned, so the ones below are courtesy of Matt snatching the camera and trying to capture our time there.

Abby was crowned Thanksgiving Princess by her grandparents and daddy before dinner.  And she truly believes she is a princess.

My hospitable in-laws...thanks, guys!

Jackson, licking his lips after getting his own serving of turkey.  Who knows what else he ate while we were there :(

My sister-in-law, Sarah, washing the dishes and trying not to scowl at her brother taking the picture.

My niece, Shelby, is taller than me!

My nephews, Drew and Trace...tons of fun and energy!

Friday, November 26, 2010

What I'm Reading...

"Let your passion to explain become a passion to know Christ...
Let your passion to be right become a passion to honor Christ...
Let your passion to heal become a passion to give hope...
Let your passion to connect become a passion to trust a sovereign Christ."

(Crabb, Finding God, p. 212)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Frugal Friday: Money Back with Ebates

If you're doing any online shopping this holiday season, I have a great money saving tip for you!  If you shop through Ebates, you can earn up 1-26% cash back every time you shop, depending on the store.  There are over 1000 stores involved, including Kohl's, eBay, Target, Walmart, Toys R Us, Bed Bath & Beyond.

And if you're buying a flight or booking a hotel through Expedia or Travelocity, you can get cash back too!

Think about it this way, many of you are already earning 1-5% back on purchases with your credit card rewards.  Why not double dip and get another 1-26% back as a check through Ebates?

My first Ebates check came in the mail the other day...see?  It works :)  And it looks like if you sign up, you get $5 added to your account automatically!  Check it out here.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Outside My Window

Every year since we moved to North Carolina, I've appreciated the gorgeous autumn trees.  I don't know what it is about those colors, the smell, or the crunch beneath your feet, but it makes me want to wrap up in a blanket, eat home made soup, and wear my fuzzy slippers.  It is one of my favorite times of the year!

Oh, and I'm experimenting around with my new photo app, Instagram.  Love the filters :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Quotes Around Our Home

"Looks like you have a bicycle chain around your neck."
- Matt, in reference to my new necklace

"Watch a booby!"
- Abigail, in reference to wanting to watch a movie...we're getting some of our consonants confused.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

DIY Instant Oatmeal

Now that it's getting colder in the mornings, we've been more in the mood for something hot and yummy for breakfast.  Unfortunately, I'm not much of a morning person and the thought doing anything more than pouring a bowl of cereal or popping something in the toaster is more than I can handle in my state of delirium.  So, when I came across this idea for instant oatmeal on a blog (so sorry I forgot which one, or else I would link it), I jumped at the chance to try it.  This is sooooo much tastier than packaged instant oatmeal, is super convenient, and costs less.

Place the following in a snack size Ziploc bag:
1/3 cup quick cook oats
1 T brown sugar (or however much you want)
Dried cranberries, cherries, blueberries, etc.
Chopped walnuts or slivered almonds

When you're ready to cook it on a chilly morning, just pour the contents of one bag into a bowl, add 2/3 cup milk or water, and microwave for 1 minute.  Voila!  Super yummy oatmeal made super quick despite a super state of sleepiness.

Monday, November 1, 2010


We had a fun time celebrating the Halloween season the past few days.  It was a first for both Abigail and Matt to carve pumpkins and go trick-or-treating.  As we steal candy from our daughter's trick-or-treat stash, we would like to remember the fun experiences leading up to our sugar overload.

Mommy, why don't you trust me with a pumpkin carving knife?

A look of despair.  Matt's pumpkin ended up in the trash about an hour later.  Good try, sweetie!  On another note, my jack-o-lantern is looking pretty good.

This is what it looks like to trick-or-treat with determination.

Enjoying the ride with our friend, Juliabelle.

Knock, knock, knock!

Hmmm...nobody is coming to the door.  Maybe I'll just try to let myself in.!  So much work for candy!

Sorting out the stash with Daddy

Happy Halloween!

Check out Matt's post on Halloween here.
Some good thoughts on the season!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Little Reds

Multiple choice.  Something is wrong with this picture.

A) The tomato is as big as the red peppers. Pretty good sized tomato :)

B) The red peppers are as big as the tomato. Must be dwarf sized peppers :(

C) Produce from my garden is finally coming in and it's almost the beginning of November.

D) B and C

The correct answer is D. Of course I would grow red peppers the size of my pinky.  What am I supposed to cook with miniscule peppers?!  And who knows why my produce is coming in this late.  I don't.  Do you?

Friday, October 29, 2010

Frugal Friday: This Will Revolutionize My Life!

After making my $20 car seat purchase a few months ago, I realized the joy in saving up for big purchases.  So, the next big item on my list to get came this past week...

...and I cannot tell you how EXCITED I am to have a carpet cleaner!!!  And what a complete dork I am for being so excited.  But wait, you need to understand my main motivation.  You see, this wonderful cleaning device will help me love our dog, Jackson, better.  At least that's what I keep telling myself.  My level of love for him is pretty low when he's done this:

When people are over, we put him in our bedroom. The problem is that Jackson always wants to be where the people are and stands at the door of our bedroom for hours on end, with his nose against the door and tongue hanging out, ready for us to come get him.  He also chews at the door frame, which adds to the drool factor.  My frustration with the damage to the door frame is another post.  All the drool results in a soggy puddle at the entrance to the bedroom, which I, without fail, manage step in somehow.  Gross, I know.  So, carpet cleaner to the rescue!

I completely paid for the carpet cleaner ($147!) with Amazon cards earned from online consumer surveys and Swagbucks.  Check out these ways to make a little extra's so worth it!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Autumn is Here!

Our little family went to Hillridge Farms the other day.  It was both Matt and Abigail's first time at a pumpkin patch and the weather was perfect!  Here are some shots of our time there:

Mommy cow and Baby pig

 Shoveling kernels in the corn pit...and slowly sinking down.

Look at my brave little baby on her way up the hill for the giant slide!

In the tunnel...

...and out the other side.

Navigating the corn maze with Daddy

My sweet girl

Abigail, the busdriver

On a hayride with Daddy.  Contrary to the look of this picture, Matt had a wonderful time!

And we're off!

Found one!  Just need to pick it up and bring it home...


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