May 29, 2012

Things that make me smile

Little things that can make a girl happy.

A zucchini bread cake.

Coffee with a friend.

New coasters I made.

Having a good laugh showing them to my husband. 

Thanks for stopping by :)

May 22, 2012

How to make iced coffee

Stephen and I LOVE iced coffee. I would rather have an iced coffee than any other dessert (well, strawberry short cake might rival it)and I never knew how to make if before. I tried pouring hot coffee into ice - yuck. Idon't enjoy watered down coffee. So, here is a recipe that works!
You will need:
1. whole beans
2. Coffee grinder
3. Jar with lid (mason jars work well)
Measure out 1 cup of coffee beans and coarsely grind them.

Fill 8oz jar with  ground beans and fill with water. If you are great at pouring things into jars, by all means don't worry about a funnel. But for people like me, take a piece of paper or a funnel to pour beans into jar (or else you will have a huge mess) Seal the lid and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator for 12 hours.

 Its morning! So, take a coffee filter and place over a cup.  
All the beans will catch and the coffee will land in the cup.
Add in creamer, sugar and ice and stir to mix.
*Lighten things up in this drink by using nonfat milk... or fat-free half & half. Use your desired low/no calorie sweetener in place of sugar.
*Another option is to add a flavored creamer, which will cover both the cream and the sugar.


May 17, 2012

Who wants some Broadway?!

I want some Broadway. And thankfully so does my office mate.
So, the story. My Mom, Aunt Carol and I have been season ticket holders for the last 2 years for Broadway in Birmingham. Well, sadly, Mom and my aunt didn't want to renew tickets. And, I would feel bad dragging Stephen to some of the plays (sorry hun I made you watch Billy Elliott the movie - wouldn't DREAM of dragging you to it LIVE, but your always a good sport).

Anyway, lo and behold - CATHERINE. You want to get season tickets with me?!?! Her answer: of course. Sah-weet.

So, whilst driving to grab us some Starbucks coffee to fill my minor addiction (only finding out as we get inside that my grand plan of getting us the half off deal has expired, so we went to Yogurt Mountain instead), we called and ordered our tickets!

I am so pumped about this season and a new buddy to come along. :)

2012-2013 season, watch out. We're a comin!

May 15, 2012

A step back in to reality

It's funny how little small everyday occurrences calmly nudge (or sometimes slap) you back to what is really important.

Yesterday we got a call from the auto collision place that has had my car for two weeks (we were in an accident on Hwy 280 - got rear ended and push into another car) and praise the Lord we are fine. However, my car suffered some damage and was totalled.

When Stephen called me and told me the news, I cried a bit. This car was my first car, the one my parents lovingly gifted me for my 16th birthday.

I was angry and frustrated about the situation. I wanted MY car,  I didn't want to purchase a new car, and I didn't chose to be in this situation in the first place. I was just plain upset.

Thankfully, I calmed down and realized that my Mom, Stephen and I who were in the wreck were safe, as well as the driver who hit us and the girl we hit. Cars are replaceable, lives are not.

Today, during a discussion at lunch, I realized truly how blessed I am and how petty my attitude has been. We talked about a wonderful co-worker and his 10 day stint in the Ukraine working for an orphanage and with the kids who have nothing - nothing by our standards at least. They don't get the luxuries we receive everyday - a job, a car, a warm/hot bath, enough food.  And yet here I was feeling sorry for myself. It's a bit sickening.

So, before you get mad at your car because its being finicky, or because your Starbucks latte isn't quite sweet enough (yup, I've neen unhappy about that before), remember that you are blessed. God had put us in a wonderful position of reaching NATIONS with the gifts He has allowed us to have. Gifts of wealth to spread to those who lack food, gifts of resources to translate His word into other languages, gifts of prayer for our brothers and sisters, gifts of traveling to do missions, and gifts of jobs to share the gospel with those around us.

God is our everything. Only in Him do we find eternal joy, peace, love, grace, humility.

May 14, 2012

Average day at the office...or something like that

Team building. If you can tell me how going to the shooting range is team building I will give you 5 bucks.

Friday my work team headed to Steel City for some "team building" aka shooting lots and lots of high powered rifles, hand guns, semi automatics, etc.

 I was the first one to try. Thankfully, we had some great coaching! From our CEO and VP no less.

 I learned to load several types of guns. The more I shot, the more efficient I got.

 I was the first person to hit inside the diamond. BA-HAM.

This picture is meant to intimidate. OK, not really but I thought it was a cool shot. Besides, how can I intimidate when the font and letters on this page is green and cute?!  

The girls who dominated!

Me with our CEO and a handgun.
Me, CEO, riffle.

Just another day's hard work at the office.

May 11, 2012

A walk in the park

Yesterday Catherine and I went to walk during our lunch break at Aldridge Park. Hooray! It was a perfect day - absolutely stunning Sunshine, light breeze and upper 70's. We put on our tennis shoes and headed to enjoy our stroll. Upon entering the park, we saw a sale on hydrangeas. You can use the sweet wagon to load your plants to your car.

The park was FILLED with hydrangeas.

My absolute favorite flowers!

We met some geese and their babies along the way.

And enjoyed the magnolias too.

It was a lovely walk. I think this must be a weekly occurrence. I'm also a little bummed I couldn't purchase any flowers (mainly because my yard - front and back - receive too much sun and not enough shade for these flowers). That's okay, I can visit them at Aldridge park any ole time :)

Happy Friday everyone! I'm leaving shortly to go the gun range. Yup, GUN RANGE. I'm sure I will have stories about it later...

May 10, 2012

2 months of marriage

Has it really been 2 months of marriage today?!?! Wow, what an incredible journey so far. 
 Guess the old saying is true - time flies when you are having fun :)

And I am thankful for every one of those seconds.

Thanks for stopping by. See you later.

Photos by Arden Photography

May 9, 2012

My mad photography skills ;)

My sweet hubby loves loves LOVES photography. I'm interested in trying my hand at photography and so Stephen  took me out for a shoot. Man, it is hard!! There is so stinking much to it!! I only learned a couple of things (slow learner here) and definitely have a long way to go before I master it. I used my works camera (nothing as cool as SMS's camera, but it had to do). We ventured over to Samford. I like things in focus with blurred backgrounds.

A face.

A hand.

My ring.

And again.

A bush branch.

Handsome hubby. (Thanks for letting me borrow your lens for this one)
Ring times 3. 

A flower.  

I had so much fun shooting and excited about getting better at it. It will take some time - thanks for the patience hun.

May 7, 2012

Cinco de Mayo

My Cinco de Mayo was a superb.

Stephen cooked breakfast (pancakes and eggs) and we sat out on our patio and enjoyed the morning. Eating outside reminded me of our honeymoon (we ate b-fast outside almost everyday).

Then we headed to our neighborhood pool and laid out. I stayed a bit longer that Stephen (sorry you don't like laying out babe, it can be boring I know) and now I have a nice healthy glow. Beat it pale skin!

I came home from the pool and took a short nap. Naps are good. Naps are great. I should take a nap everyday! Hemm, anyway, Stephen and I headed to the airport to pick up Morgan. She had gone to London and brought back some treats - Cadberry chocolate! Can you say YUM?! Thanks for the gifts girl - I can't wait to try the English tea.

Shortly thereafter, Stephen and I headed to meet our friends Polly and Jon Morris at Brio in Brookwood Mall. Walking to Brio we enjoyed some music provided by the neighboring restaurant.  
After our dinner with friends, Stephen and I headed to Samford University to listen to the Alabama Symphony Orchestra play John Williams music (the guy who wrote Star Wars, ET, Harry Potter, Jaws, Indiana Jones, etc theme music).

We had fabulous seats and loved the music!

A wonderful day spent with my hubs!

Wreath and door decorations {DIY}

This past Friday night, while Stephen went to see The Avengers with the guys (It has had rave reviews, so if you haven't seen it, go see it), I decided I was was going to have a craft night. I popped in a movie, sat on the floor with my dinner and prepared to be messy!

After work, I ran to Jo Ann's and picked up 3 types of burlap, 2 plastic wreaths, flowers and magnets. (The magnets will come into play in another blog posting).
I didn't get to make everyone I wanted, and only worked on 2 things out of like 5.
First, I grabbed a wreath and some fake flowers. I LOVE hydrangea's, so of course that had to be my flower of choice for the wreath. I pulled the flowers off the stems and placed them on the wreath so I could determine the look.

Then, I used my hot glue gun to attach them to the wreath. Simple, right? I want to add our house numbers to the other side of the wreath, but forgot to purchase those - so I will add that next time I run to Michael/Hobby Lobby/Jo Ann's. I didn't cover the entire wreath with flowers, but that is definitely something you can do. Fake flowers can be expensive without coupons, so make sure to purchase only the amount you are comfortable with. A $10.00 project can easily turn into a $30.00 project with more flowers.
And bam! An easy, simple craft that makes my front door look ready for summer! Again, you can add anything you want. An initial, house numbers, a bow or whatever you like to complete your wreath.

The next project was with burlap. Again, I bought like 8 yards, so I plan to do lots more projects.You've probably seen these burlap hangers on people's door during football season. I wanted to experiment first with one.  I first folded the burlap and cut 2 pieces in a circular form. It took about 1/3 yard of burlap for this. The I used a stapler and stapled all around the edges to combine the two pieces. I left an opening so I could stuff plastic bags to fluff the burlap up when finished painting.

I them painted the top with acrylic paint. Make sure to have something underneath the burlap (the paint will bleed thru).

I then free-handed the S and Schoen. Pretty bad, I know. I will use a stencil next time. I added the plastic bags inside the burlap and stapled the opening closed.  You can use a wire or cut up a coat hanger to hang it over your front door.

I will be working on some later - and hopefully they will look MUCH cuter! Oh well, got to start somewhere. I still had a blast with it!
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