Tuesday, May 31, 2011

New blog look!

So I spent the last hour editing my blog design into a more summer-y look.  :)

This might last all summer-- or well, till I get tired of it!

Not a lot's been going on to update you on!  So I'll write again later!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Summer weather...

So it's definitely 90 degrees out.

The stick on cheapy thermometer that's on our front window (in the shade) says 91!

Also- it's May, in West Virginia.  Our average high temp for this time of year is 78.  Can we say heat wave???

So it's Memorial Day today, and Brew & I had a pretty great weekend!  Saturday morning we went and looked at a few houses (on the drive-by, all of them were just "eh" so we didn't make any appointments to seriously look).  We also went to Kohls, where I spent my Kohls cash to get a sautee pan.  Ohhh and here's the kicker.  So the pan was originially like $40.  It was on sale for $30.  I had $20 Kohls cash making it $10 I actually paid for it.  AND I got a thing for a $10 rebate that I have ready to send out tomorrow!  Heck yes.  It ended up costing me NOTHING!  (Well, I guess if you wanted to be technical- you could say it cost me the postage stamp!)   Love deals like that.  Anyway, then we came home, walked the pooch, and then I headed out to my friend Whitney's bridal shower!  It was fun! :D

After the shower, I came back home & we headed to the Levee in Marietta, OH  (across the river from where we live in WV) and watched my dad's band, Country Horizon play!

And yesterday (Sunday) we went to church as usual.  Came home and walked Duke (and I baked a cake), then we headed over to Brew's aunt & grandma's for a cookout.  My nieces had fun splashing in their little pool :)

And then finally, we came home, picked up Duke, and headed to my parents' house for yet another cookout.  This was also kind of a graduation celebration for my brother.  I made him a cake! :)

My hubby also talked me into buying a laptop.  For those of you that know me, I HATE spending lots of money, especially when it's not something we absolutely NEED but Brew's very good at talking me into it.  LOL.  So OUR new laptop (it's for both of us) will be arriving sometime next week!  It's a Dell Inspiron14R.  Here's what it looks like...

And then today has been just a relaxing day... Brew went off to help my brother re-do the roof over his carport, so Duke and I have just been chillin' at home.  I want to take him for a walk but considering it's sweltering out- we're gonna wait til later this evening!

There's also two weeks of school left (woo hoo!-- actually only 5 days for me scheduled left) and then summer will have officially begun ;)  I have a few days off before I start babysitting for the summer.  And in 3 weeks and 3 days Brew, Duke & I are heading to the mountains for a camping trip to celebrate our 1 year anniversary!

Alrighty that's all!  Stay cool everyone :)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Food Favorite on a Friday!

Ok so here's my favorite new-ish thing I've cooked this week!

Steak & Veggie Teriyaki Stir Fry  w/rice

You need:
Large-ish Beef round steak (or you can use a couple chicken breasts if you prefer)
Teriyaki sauce
Frozen stir fry veggies (you can use fresh ones too-- we just don't go through produce quick enough so most veggies I buy frozen)
1 packet of Knorr Asian Sides "Chicken Fried Rice"  (you can also just use plain white rice or if you are ambitious- can make your own fried rice.  I use this because its a gajillion times easier AND only takes like 10 minutes!)

Step 1-  Cut thawed meat into strips

Step 2-  Marinade strips of meat in teriyaki sauce.  I put mine in in the morning and marinated them all day.  If you prefer a stronger teriyaki flavor, put them in the marinade the day or night before.

Step 3- Cook steak to approx. medium "done-ness".  It'll continue to cook when you mix it with the veggies, so if you prefer your steaks more rare, don't cook them as long by themselves.  Chicken of course cook thoroughly.

Step 4- While the meat is cooking, Pour teriyaki sauce into the bottom of a frying pan, enough so it covers the bottom.

Step 5- Put in frozen (or fresh) stir fry veggies and the (mostly) cooked meat.  Stir fry in the teriyaki sauce until done.

Step 6- Prepare rice according to package directions.  You may want to start it when the other stuff is cooking.

And that's it!  Super easy, and takes no time at all.  I'd venture to say it's fairly healthy as well :)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

April Update

Finally!  About time, right?  ;)

Wee Bit Wednesday

{one} what’s the worst date you’ve ever been on?
Nothing stands out in particular.  There were a couple crappy ones w/my ex (involving traveling together lol) but I actually haven't dated a lot so yeah.

{two} if you could be any other person for one day, who would it be?
Hmm... I'm not sure.  I don't really think about that sort of thing.  As corny as it may be I don't really want to be anyone else lol.

{three} what is your favorite kind of cheese?
ahhh I loooove cheese.  In particular, cheddar, provolone, havarti, colby jack... really just anything except cheeses like blue cheese and feta.  Can't stand those.

{four} do you remember your 1st grade teacher?
Of course.  Mrs. Evans :)  She was one of my favorites-- and was also one of the teachers that I did my student teaching with!

{five} who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?
My hubby.  And also my friend Nicole and/or my mom.

{six} were you ever in a school talent show?
Oh yes.  Like every year from 5th grade to my senior year.  Clogging of course :)

{seven} who is your favorite fictional character?
Hmm so many... For now I'll say Hermione Granger :)

{eight} can you open your eyes underwater?
Can I?  Yes, but my eyes are super sensitive to chlorine so I don't.  They get all red and sore and stuff. 

{nine} do you look at the keyboard when you type?
No, not usually

{ten} when was the last time you took a nap?
I like NEVER nap.  I usually wake up shaky and feeling icky.
The exception is when I am sick, and that was a couple months ago.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Summer Bucket List!

I got this from Jess at Here Comes the Sun, and decided to join her!

Here Comes The Sun

So things I want to accomplish this summer (in no order)...

{Serious Scrapbooking!}  
I desparately need to finish my brother & sister in law's wedding scrapbook.  I'm ashamed to admit that it was supposed to be a wedding present for them (they got married last August) and I have done very little on it since August.  Also, I never finished my scrapbook from the trip to Thailand we took.  In January 2010.  Yeah.  I'm so behind...

{Make a baby}Sounds simple enough right?  LOL  but yeah we are still trying, and hopefully it happens for us this summer.  :)  And also I'm hoping to still have fun trying as well ;)

{Clean, clean, clean}
I need to clean out the third bedroom we have which will also hopefully be a future nursery.  I need to take things to the dump, goodwill, my parents house, my uncle's new house, and find homes for the few things of mine I'm storing in there.  It also needs CLEANED since it was the one room that we didn't bother with when we moved in.  I'd like to prime the walls/ceiling as well to get ready to paint it when we actually turn it into a room ;)

{Obedience School}
My dog is starting obedience classes this summer.  I am hoping they go well!  He's a good hearted dog but needs to learn some manners :)  I'm just hoping they don't kick him out for being excitable and otherwise annoying LOL.
{Celebrating our first anniversary}
We are going camping for a nice weekend getaway, just me, Brew, and Duke.  Here's hoping for a wonderful weekend with good weather and lots of quality time together.

{Read a ton}
I have several books I'd like to read this summer.  I don't have a whole lot of time when I'm working so it takes me forever to get through a book.  I'd like to read at least 5 or 6 this summer.

{Save some dough}
I'm going to try and stash away all that I am making this summer babysitting (which is about $340/wk) in savings.  I'll keep just a little out in cash for fun stuff like date nights and things.  But we have sooooo much we need to save for... house/land purchase hopefully soon, maternity leave for me when we get pregnant-- I'm a sub so I don't get paid time off, and either car repair or a new car-- we're having issues with our Malibu.  Right now my hubby is working enough overtime that theoretically we should be ok living off of his income for a while.  So that's a big goal of ours this summer.  I should be able to save at least $1800 this summer.

{Find time to exercise}
That is other than walking my dog, and the couple hours a week I spend clogging.  Even if it's just some Wii Fit or bike rides or something.  
{Try at least two new recipes a month}
That's a lofty goal for me because I like sticking to tried and true things that I know how to fix.  But I know I need to get out there a little more and try new things.  Worse case scenario, Papa John's and Domino's deliver ;)

That's all I can think of at the moment... I'll let you know if I have any more later!

Food, glorious food...

Before I do my food favorite post this week (I'm going to try and do it Saturday!) I wanted to update you on what we're doing!

So we're going to try and change our diets a bit.  Several reasons-- one, Brew wants to lose some weight, and I'd like to at least maintain my weight, two, we both have crappy genes (heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, blood clots, the list goes on...) so we really NEED to be eating healthier, and lastly I just want to develop better habits that I can teach my kiddos someday.

That being said-- we can't change it all at once.  Mainly because I'm not just going to throw out perfectly good food we have in our cabinets.  And two, this is a change.  A permanent change.  Not a diet or whatever.  But we also know that we have to have treats sometimes.  So on date nights, and other special occasions- we can eat whatever we want.  Seriously who wants to eat a salad at Thanksgiving?  Yeah.  So this is really more of trying to change our habits, and to buy better foods at the grocery store.

Some examples of the changes I'm making...
  • We always buy wheat bread because Brew prefers it, but we're switching to whole wheat for all breads-- including buns and bagels.
  • I'm buying more fruits instead of sweet snacks.
  • Switching to pretzels, and baked crackers, baked chips, etc. instead of regular chips
  • Whole wheat pastas instead of regular pastas
  • Buying "light" or "low-cal" or "fat free" salad dressings and sauces.  Brew & I are ranch addicts so I can't give it up completely, but the light Ranch has less than 100 cal a serving :)
  • I'm acknowledging I do not HAVE to have a "carb" at every meal.  It's ok to have meat and veggies only :)  So with that, I've bought more frozen veggies.
  • I've already made this change before- I don't buy any regular pop anymore (unless I know we're having guests).  Instead it's all diet, plus I buy bottled water with crystal light packets, and I've cut down on the sugar I put in my iced tea.   I still make tea with sugar because since I've cut back on caffeine since we've been trying to get pregnant, I only have it once a day anyway.

Now I can't adhere to this perfectly.  I always buy a couple frozen or skillet meals for days that I don't feel like or don't have time to cook.  And I'm sure they are not always great for you.  But I'm just trying to make some small changes.

So don't be surprised if you see more "healthy" recipes I'm sharing... And while I'm at it I always love new things to try (especially EASY recipes, as I'm no gourmet chef here ;))  So please feel free to share them with me!

Ok that's all for now!  Promise I'll have a recipe up for this weekend.

Warmer weather...

Hey friends! :)  I know I've not been doing well updating often, but I'm about to post like 3 in a row so maybe that makes up for it???

Well since the weather's been warmer, and I've had a few days off- (for a little while I was working every single day)  I've had time to tackle a few things I've wanted to for a while.

First- I'm trying out my brown green thumb and I actually have flowers.  Surprise!  They are looking good!  LOL.  (Those that know me well know I'm no gardener.)  Though I was unable to put a flower bed or vegetable garden in.  (Those are long term goals haha)  This year I got a few hanging flower baskets to pretty up my otherwise white-trash looking porch.  (Sorry if that offends anyone-- but well, obviously the broken screen door propped open by a broom isn't the nicest looking set up LOL)


Next- I actually did this a few months ago but never posted the final product.  I made this collage of pics from our honeymoon with Picasa, ordered a 11x14 print from Shutterfly, used a frame from Wal-Mart and a cute decal (that says- "Always Kiss Me Goodnight") from the dollar tree of all places.  I literally have less than 10 bucks in this and I love it!  <3  It's in our bedroom :)

And lastly, I reorganized our bedroom closet.  Our closet is shared with the 3rd bedroom (which currently has a bunch of random junk belonging to my uncle and us in it-- but will eventually be a nursery when that time comes)

Before, we had just been using the entire closet for our stuff.  Well, I bought those plastic drawer carts for some of our clothes, shoes, hats, purses, belts, etc, and also used some milk crates on the left (you can't see them) for things we seldom to never use, and on the right (again, behind the wall- can't see it) I have our bigger duffel bags and stuff stacked.  So we were able to consolodate our clothes to one rung, and I'm planning on buying drawer carts for the other side as well, whenever a baby does come along, and doing the same for their closet. :)

So I still have lots of things that I want to accomplish around here, but at least I've gotten something done :)

And before I go, one cute Duke pic- taken today!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Update Fail

Yeah so I'm sucking at updating lately.  I've been busy!

So it's almost the end of the school year!  (Unfortunately I still have like 6 IEPs to write and meetings to have for my long-term job before the end of the year.  Hence the "busy").

Everything's been going pretty well with us.  Brew might have a job offer.  He had a second interview today-- he should be home soon.  It's basically about the same pay (though it'll be less once you subtract all the overtime he gets now) but that's just it-- Monday through Friday 8-5 and NO overtime.  That means I will actually get to see my husband during the week! =-O  So yeah.  We'll have to do some number crunching and all before he takes it (if he's officially offered it) to make sure we can afford it, but I honestly believe it will be better for us for him to get this job.

Hmmm I think that's about all I can update you on-- Ohhhh and I got my March update up on my YouTube channel (finally LOL)  Still working on the April one.  Looks like I'm destined to be a month behind.  Oh well.  I'm not going to embed the video on here-- just go to my YouTube channel to watch!!! :)  http://www.youtube.com/clogger024

Alrighty that's all for now!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Mom's Day/Weekend Recap + Spring Projects...

We had a great weekend with our mamas! 

Saturday I went flower-shopping with my sister in law Mandy.  We bought Brew's mom matching hanging flower baskets for her porch.  In the evening we went to Brew's parents house for a combo Birthday (Brew's and his brother in law AJ's birthday are May 1st and 4th) and Mother's Day dinner/get together.  So my mom-in-law's yummy lasagna, cake, ice cream, and family-- can't get any better than that!!!

Sunday was great too... my aunt & uncle & little cousin came in from Columbus to visit, so after church we went to lunch at Outback.  (Party of 14! lol... Mom, Dad, my brother Mason, my other brother Matthew, his wife Amanda, my grandparents, my aunt, uncle, and cousin, AND my brother's wife's parents came too-- since they also attend our church)  Yeah crazy bunch LOL.  Then we went to my brother Matthew's house in the evening.  We brought Duke along and he had lots of fun playing with his "cousin"- my brother's dog- Gibson.

So yeah great weekend :)

Inspired by Mandy, I went out today after school and bought three hanging flower baskets for my front porch.  I can't really put a flower bed in yet (we need new gutters and if we aren't going to stay here very much longer- I'm not going to pay for them).  And if anyone knows me I have NO green thumb lol.  So we'll see how it goes.  Brew's putting them up for me when he gets home tonight.  I'll get a pic and post it! :)

Maybe it's the really warm weather but I'm getting Spring fever.  I've got all these projects I want to get done.  I want to get the porch spruced up ...with flowers and I'd LOOOOVE to have one of those free standing swings- like this:

I'm also going to get some plastic drawer closet and organize the closet in our bedroom.  It's actually shared with the 3rd bedroom- which will be our future baby's nursery- and right now we're taking up the whole thing, I'm hoping to reorganize it so that the other room can use it too!  And THAT room needs cleaned out too... my list is getting bigger!!!

Alright well that's enough rambling!  Until later!

Food favorite

I've been slacking lately, especially in the blog-posting & picture-taking department :-p

But I do have a recipe to post (just no pics-- just take my word for it, it's good!)  And of course you know if I'm posting it then it is EASY!!!  This one is somewhat healthy as well!

Sauteed Chicken

You need:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
about a tablespoon or two of olive oil (just enough to coat the bottom of the pan... you can also use canola or vegetable oil)
Salt & Pepper to taste
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
mushrooms (optional)

1. Pour oil in bottom of medium skillet, making sure it is coated evenly

2.  Season chicken with salt and pepper to taste.

3.  Place chicken in skillet, and cook on medium-low heat for about 10 minutes (ish)

4.  When chicken is ready to turn, add the peppers, onions, and mushrooms to skillet.  Be sure to keep moving the veggies around so they don't burn.

5.  Cook chicken until juices are clear and there is no pink in the middle!  Basically- till it's done lol.

That's it :)  I usually serve it with rice-a-roni or potatoes :)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Weekend Recap

Sorry no pics for this, they are all on my camera waiting to be uploaded...

But anyway, here's a recap of our weekend (well, really the past week since it's been a week since I updated...)

{Day off + New Haircut!}  Yep Friday I ended up not working (yay)  I got my hair cut, a little shorter (shoulder length) with layers.  I also met up with Stefani, Bas, and Johannah who were in (see next) and did some shopping and Brew & I went to dinner w/them :)

{The Smits Visit}  My cousins from Germany came in.  We spent Friday evening together (as I mentioned above), then on Saturday we went out to Stefani's parents' house for a get together, and then Monday night we went out to dinner and ice cream with them, then came back to our house for a bit.  It was soooo nice to get to see them! :)  Of course, I miss them already... I hope they can come back for another visit sooner rather than later.  Hannie Jeane will be walking probably by the time we see them again :(  Makes me sad.

{Pay Day!}  I got my awesome paycheck last Friday (with back-pay), and Brew got a paycheck with like 115 hours or something insane like that on it.  So yay for having money!  LOL.  Of course I put a good chunk in savings before we could touch it.  But this whole me working a lot thing is nice.  Gotta keep working on saving though.  Unless I get lucky and get a full time job, I won't have any paid maternity leave so we're starting the saving now for when that time comes!

{MIA from YouTube}  I haven't uploaded any videos in a while.  Oops.  Just been really busy.  I'm working on March and April updates though and hopefully will have them up before the end of May LOL.

Alrighty well that's about it for now.  Ta ta!