Love, Life, Cooking, Crafts, and Everything in Between :)

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Special Homemade Dinners

This is not a tutorial or an outfit post, it is simply a post to brag on the husband of the century--mine! Tonight I came home from work to a cooked, well-thought out dinner. Ryan worked 10 long hours today (as he does Monday through Friday every week) so that he could provide for our family, and STILL found the energy and care to plan a special dinner for us! He cooked spaghetti and pasta with sausage. He also prepared garlic bread sticks and a Cesar salad. It was all delicious! He topped it off with a little moscato (sweet wine). Neither of us drink very much; in fact, we rarely have alcohol in the house, but the other night we ate out at Olive Garden and tried a sample of their house wine (which was apparently moscato). It is yummy (light and sweet). Anyway, it was a delicious meal and I felt truly cherished.

I  am so blessed by Ryan. I would have said that he was "the husband of the day" or "the husband of the year" but the fact is...we have been married for almost 2 years and 4 months and he truly strives to show me how special I am every day. He is always sweet, thoughtful, caring, hardworking, loyal, and full of surprises! I can only hope that I respect him and show him the same amount of love that he shows me in every new minute.

Men, take the time to show your wife how much she means to you, not only in the big things (which can be so wonderful) but also in the little things, in the meals, the comments, the looks, the thought behind everything. It will make your wife go the extra mile for you every time. It will build her self-confidence and make her a better spouse for you.

Women, take the time to learn what it is to respect your husband. Trust him with you heart. Trust him with the many decisions that he makes on a daily basis. Realize that he loves you and has your best interest at heart.

Never stop doing the little things for one another. Never stop planning time for special homemade dinners.

Work Appropriate Halloween

I love Halloween. I just think that it is so fun! I love the candy, the dressing up, and the passing out of candy to little kids who are dressed up! :) This year my boss said that we were allowed to dress up for Halloween as well. I was so excited!

I am going to share with you my work appropriate Halloween costume: a lumberjill/lumberjack (lol!)!

It was super simple  and super comfy. I wore ripped jeans (came not ripped but I have worn them out after 6 years of use...Hollister), a white tee (JCrew), a plaid flannel (A&F), and leather moccasins (Minnetoka for JCrew). I also wore a braided leather belt and homemade "suspenders." I made a cardboard hatchet to top off the look.

That thing I am holding is my non-colored hatchet. :)

I love making faces at my sweetie. :)

Check out how I attached the suspenders together in the back.

** The moccasins were seriously the deal of the century. They are listed here for $168. Well, there is a JCrew warehouse near me that does huge warehouse sales on their goods about once a month. To make a long story short, I paid $7 (that's right, $7!!) for an amazing, brand new pair!!!
The stock photo from JCrew
I was also excited about my cheesy suspenders. I made them from the material of two old t-shirts. I use the method here to teach myself the 5-strand braid. Turned out pretty well for my first time! I will definitely use this method again.
Did you dress up for Halloween? What were you? :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sunday Brunch: Fluffy Pancakes

Sunday's are perfect for relaxing with a late brunch. That is exactly what the hubby and I did this past weekend. I found a simple recipe for pancakes on I was curious to see how the pancakes would turn out because they had one very suspicious ingredient (white vinegar), but they ended up being delicious!

They original recipe (on the website) makes 4 servings. I reduced the recipe to make 3 servings; though I truly could have upped it to four servings to feed the two of us.

Ingredients (for 3 servings):

  • 1/2 cup and 1 Tbl milk
  • 1 Tbl and 1-1/2 tsp white vinegar
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbl and 1-1/2 tsp white sugar
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 egg
  • 1 Tbl and 1-1/2 tsp butter, melted
  • Cooking Spray (**I cooked the pancakes in our non-stick skillet and thus did not use any cooking spray. It worked perfectly.)
  1. Combine milk with vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to "sour".
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl. 
  3. Whisk egg and butter into "soured" milk. 
  4. Pour the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and whisk until lumps are gone.
  5. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and coat with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cupfuls of batter onto the skillet, and cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip with a spatula, and cook until browned on the other side.

These pancakes were the last of the batter...hence their tiny stature!

These pancakes (as I said before) were delicious! They were light and fluffy, and they are both quick and easy to make. I would highly recommend them!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

White Pants for Fall

Finally, some fall weather! I was so excited to have weather that condoned wearing jeans, boots, and a cardigan/shrug! I utilized this truly Autumn day by rocking white skinnies (Kohls), a dark plum tee (gift from my mom and dad), a charcoal and cream striped cardigan/shrug (thrifted), and charcoal suede ankle boots (gift from friend). This whole week is supposed to be cooler and I cannot wait to bust out some more layers. :)

Has fall hit your area yet? What are you most excited about wearing in the cooler weather? :)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Scrumptious Pretzel Bites

I love cinnamon sugar pretzels. It is very difficult for me to walk past an Auntie Anne's and not buy some! I found a remedy. I recently found this on Pinterest. It looked super simple and super delicious! (I was right!) The original recipe called for Texas size Rhodes rolls but I substituted in Walmart brand buttermilk rolls. Here goes...

Makes enough for 2 people to have a generous snack. :)

Ingredients (base pretzels):

1 pkg Walmart buttermilk biscuits
2 Tbl spoons melted butter
Cooking Spray

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Rip biscuits in half and form into balls. Place onto plate.
3. Boil a pan of water.
4. Gently toss dough balls into boiling water for about 45 seconds.
5. Use slotted spoon to remove puffed up dough balls from water.
6. Place onto a pan lined with a dish towel and paper towels over that. Let cool.
7. Place cooled balls onto greased pan. And place in oven.
8. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

**Make cinnamon sugar mixture to taste (LOTS of sugar--not a ton of cinnamon...apprx 1/2 cup of sugar to 2 tsps cinnamon).
**Make Parmesan/garlic/Sea Salt mixture to taste (LOTS of Parmesan cheese--some garlic powder and sea salt). 

9. Brush melted butter over baked bites.
10. Roll bites into either cinnamon or Parmesan mixture. 

I do recommend making a dip for the cinnamon sugar bites (what can I say, I'm a sugar addict!).

Sugar Dip:

1 Tbl melted butter
1Tbl milk
1 Tsp Vanilla
3/4 cup powdered sugar

1. Mix together.
2. Dip bites and enjoy! :)

In these pictures the Parmesan ones were gone and the cinnamon ones were almost gone. Oh my goodness, Ryan and I enjoyed these SO much! Delightful! :) I highly recommend them! :)

Color Blocking

Well, it was over 80 again today! Crazy, I know! I've heard that it is supposed to fall into the forties next week. What strange weather! Anyway, I took yesterday's weather as an opportunity to rock a little color blocking, skirt style! I wore a pink drawstring skirt (thrifted), and a navy tee (JCrew). I capped off both ends with a little teal (Talbots loafers and teardrop necklace--both thrifted).

By the way (shout out to my amazing husband!), the awesome deck that I sit/stand on in pictures was designed and built by my handy husband!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Dots and Chains

So, today was another beautiful, oddly warm day. For the second day in a row it peaked over 80 degrees. Again, is it really almost Halloween??? I mean, I don't live in Florida or California or someplace where it should be this warm! Anyway, I have been wanting to rock some polka dots and a chunky chain necklace (not necessarily together). I really don't have many polka dots or chunky chain necklaces....but, I made it work!

Almost my entire outfit for today was thrifted! I love getting great deals at local secondhand stores! We have a couple higher end ones that get a LOT of JCrew, Talbots, Chicos, Ann Taylor, etc. I decided that today was the day I would rock both polka dots AND a chunky chain necklace! :) I wore a white cami (thrifted--H&M), a white and tan polka dot cami that is barely noticeable in the pictures unfortunately (thrifted--Hollister), bright blue skinnies (Kohls), fuchsia cardigan (thrifted--NY&Co), chunky gold chain necklaced doubled (thrifted--Lia Sophia), and white/gold wedges (thrifted--Dollhouse).

I wonder how much longer this Indian summer will continue! I love warm weather, but I also love fall/winter clothing! :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

October Summers

It is October 23rd...just 8 days before Halloween. It's supposed to be cold by Halloween! I was raised in New England, a place where kids had to pick costumes that would fit over layers and layers of winter clothing and coats...and you would STILL freeze! Today the temperature got up past 80 degrees! Instead of wearing layers and winter-y clothing, I wore a dress. The dress was thrifted. I cinched it with a belt (Loft), and wore red flats (Target). In the pictures you can see I started out by stomping down the grass so you could see my flats. Enjoy! :) (Pictures were taken by my sweet hubby!)

How are we supposed to switch out our summer clothing with our winter clothing if the weather remains above 60?? ....I have to admit though....I kind of love it. :)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Denim Over Dress

The weather today was beautiful! It was bright, sunny, and 75 (Fahrenheit). I wanted to be cool, but not to look like I was stuck in summer. I opted for a cute dress (thrifted), a denim jacket (NY&C), and black bow suede ballet flats (JCrew). I thought this brought a nice, simple balance.
Yes, I realize that I look like I have only one leg in this picture...I assure you I have two! :)

How do you dress for days that are truly fall but feel like summer?? :)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Day Date: Foliage Drive

October is such a wonderful month for fun fall dates. God has dressed up the world with beautiful foliage and nice, neutral weather. Today, my sweet husband decided to take advantage of that. :) He stocked us up with coffee and snacks, as well as stocked the Jeep's gas and air (in the tires). He then whisked me off onto an adventure. We spent hours (literally) driving through quiet country roads and the curvacious, color littered mountains. It was so fun! I LOVE looking at all the lovely leaves. I also love the peace found in country roads and the majesty in mountains. We toured, talked, commented on the beauty, and stopped at various lookouts to take pictures. :) Here are a few (warning....the pictures were taken with my Iphone and do not do the colors and vibrancy justice!):

I love this little old Bel-Air!

Me and my sweetie :)

I love that you can see the ripples in the mountain.

The handsome man with me again. :)

I simply love this.

We had SO much fun. If you have the opportunity, I would highly suggest you mimic our date! It's a blast and a great way to remind yourself of the beauty that God has created for us! :)

As for my was simple. I wore light gray cords (GAP), an orange eyelette tee (Arizona), black faux suede boots (they are super old and I have no idea where I bought them...), and a black puffy vest (Kenneth Cole).
Ryan caught me a little off guard...making a funny face and putting my hands in my pockets! :)
Regardless of whether or not you and your love choose to do this particular date, I encourage you to date your spouse! Keep the fun and romance alive. Also, talk with your spouse! Ryan and I are best best best friends and talk with each other about everything. I know that not all spouses are like that with one another, but I encourage you to try. Communication is SO important in marriage and practice makes perfect. :)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Military Jackets

I love military jackets. They are so structured. I have two military styled jackets that I bought a LONG time ago (probably about 8 years lie!). I have a cream colored one and a black one. They are surprisingly nice, considering they came from Aeropostale (no offense...). I was in early high school when I bought them. I don't wear them nearly enough. Today I decided to rock the black one. I paired it with a black cami (H&M), a gray and white striped long sleeve tee (GAP), skinny jeans (Hollister), and fringed moccasins (Kohl's). I also doubled up a long silver and gold necklace (Brighton). I like the pop of interest the stripes brought in. I rolled up the sleeves of the jacket. I also rolled the sleeves of the tee up over the sleeves of the jacket (as seen below). :)
In the middle picture I'm looking down at the grass, stomping it down to show off my moccasins. (In that one you can see how thin my hair is! lol :))

Oh yeah, I got my hair fixed! After much thought and research I went to an awesome shop called Turning Headz Salon. The owner (Wanda) cut my hair and I love it! :) I'll post better pictures of it in a future post. Anyway, I would definitely recommend her for short/medium haircuts and girls with fine hair. :)

How do you feel about military jackets?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Day Sans Make-Up

Some days you just don't feel like putting make-up on. Today was one of those days. I'm not really a huge make-up wearer anyway but today my face was 100% naked. As per usual, it was also a comfy clothes day. I wore a pink flannel top (Target), a white layering tank (Target), a gray scarf (tied into an infinity's really old and I don't remember where it's from), gray skinnies (Kohl's), and fringe moccasins (Kohl's).
I'm not sure if it's allergies, monthly gifts, or what, but I have been EXHAUSTED lately! I need to find my energy. Suggestions welcome! :)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

40 Degree Mornings

It can be so difficult to plan outfits for days that begin in the 40s and end in the 70s! Yes, peel-able layers work wonders, but today I really wanted a full blown chilly-weather outfit. I opted to break out some cords. I wore light gray corduroys (GAP), a gray layering tank (Target), a pink and orange  sweater (JCrew), and orange driving moccasins (JCrew). Truth be told, it was perfect for going to work this morning...but I was roasting on the drive home at 2!

PS I get it...I am super florescent white. I can tan...I can tan well actually. I don't do that anymore though, at least not anywhere but the beach.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Weekend Fun with Friends

This weekend the hubby and I headed over to our friends' house to carve pumpkins! That was one of the things on my October bucket list! Yay! :) We had so much fun eating, talking, and carving! Everyone did a fantastic job with their pumpkins. Tonight Ryan and I are going to put our finished products on our front steps and take a picture of them all lit up! :) I'm excited.
Pumpkin 1: JJ & Erica's, Pumpkin 2: Mine, Pumpkin 3: Leslie & Andrew's, Pumpkin 4: Ryan's!
The party was at night and so I wanted to make sure I was warm, but not so overdressed that I got pumpkin innards all over myself! I went with my fringed moccasins (Kohls); red skinnies (Kohls); white long sleeve tee (Target); striped scarf (JCrew), and orange bag (Aigner).

Petey decided to join me for a couple of the pictures. Isn't he a cutie! :)

What fun activities are on your Fall bucket list??

Saturday, October 13, 2012


Okay, one more post for tonight! I am waiting for my love to come home. He's been working out of state all day. I know he had a rough day, so I decided to whip up a little surprise for him (he better not see this before he gets his surprise because that would mean he is reading his phone while driving....that's a big no no!) Anyway, he LOVES buckeyes. I haven't made them for a while...probably about a year (at least it seems that way). After work I went to the store and bought a couple of the ingredients I was not sure we would have enough of at home, and then headed home to chocolate-y, peanut buttery goodness! I found the recipe here on They are super simple.


Makes 5 dozen  
  • 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 6 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons shortening


  1. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and confectioners' sugar with hands to form a smooth stiff dough. Shape into balls using 2 teaspoons of dough for each ball. Place on prepared pan, and refrigerate.
  3. Melt shortening and chocolate together in a metal bowl over a pan of lightly simmering water. Stir occasionally until smooth, and remove from heat.
  4. Remove balls from refrigerator. Insert a wooden toothpick into a ball, and dip into melted chocolate. Return to wax paper, chocolate side down, and remove toothpick. Repeat with remaining balls. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set.

Chocolate and peanut can you go wrong?? Yum!! I hope he enjoys them! :)

Casual Saturday

After what felt like a super long week of crab apples coming into the store and lots of school work, today was my day to relax....except I had to work. :/ I don't typically work Saturdays but the boss was short staffed today. Anyway, I still wanted to feel somewhat relaxed at work. That was the inspiration I used to plan my outfit. I wore a plaid/flannel button up (Abercrombie & Fitch), white cami (H&M), skinny jeans (Hollister), brown leather riding boots (Franco Fortini). For a pop of color and function I wore a bright orange side bad (Aigner).
What do you like to wear on a day you simply need to relax?

Bow Scarf

Today I am posting yesterday's outfit. Yesterday was a long day of work (though I had fun with my awesome coworker!) and a long night of school. Regardless, two more grad classes down! Yay!! :) Anyway, I love this outfit. I did something a little different with my scarf. I tied it into a bow! I love it. The scarf was yellow and gave my otherwise neutral outfit a pop of color. Check it out!

I have no idea where I got that scarf...I've had it for years! The jeans are from Kohls, the navy tee is JCrew, the navy military-style jacket is JCrew, and the leather riding boots are Franco Fortini. Oh yeah, and the white cuff watch that you can barely see is from Chicos (thrifted).

Riding boots...I love them!! Do you?