Sunday, November 27, 2011

My Happy Place

We just spent a fabulous weekend in Eureka Springs, AR.  Eureka is one of those places that people either really love, or they just hate it.  We absolutely love it there.  We love the slow pace, the old buildings, the historic homes, the downtown shops, and fabulous food.  We have our favorite places that we hit every time we go, but this time we tried out 2 new restaurants and will now count those as "must do's" as well.  I didn't take any pictures the whole time we were there because the weather wasn't great and I didn't always look camera ready.  We wore comfy clothes, threw on our hats and spent the day wandering the streets.  The bed and breakfast we stay in truly feels like a second home to us.  Susan and Bob are such great hosts and make us feel so welcome.  We were married there 6 years ago and look forward to visiting every year.  I'd love to have a little nest egg that we could use to buy one of those historic homes and fix it up just the way we want it.  I'd love to open up a little store or eatery and totally embrace the Eureka lifestyle.  But for now, it's back to reality and back to the grind. Thank goodness for little getaways!  Do you have a little spot that you like to get away to? 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

May you gobble 'til you wobble on this Thanksgiving Day!

Monday, November 21, 2011

This is How We Do It

Since my mom and dad just live a hop, skip, and a jump from us, we don't have to travel for Thanksgiving.  That's something to be thankful for in itself, I have heard horror stories of holiday travel.  I always look forward to Thanksgiving because it really is a stress free celebration in our family.  We do things comfy and casual and mom always makes sure everyone has their favorite thing on the table.  Yes, mother, I DO want that green bean casserole. Sorry guys, I just can't resist those little french fried onions when they get all toasty and almost burned in the oven. This year will be different though, because my sister won't be there with her family.  They took a trip to Disneyland with their kiddos.  I'm sure they are having a great time, but we sure will miss them.  On the upside, that means more green bean casserole for me.

I always look forward to the prep and cooking part of Thanksgiving.  I love waking up early and puttering around the house in my pj's, drinking coffee, and watching the parade on TV.  I guess it's kind of tradition around our house and I really love hearing all the bands play while I cook.  This year I'm making the dressing, balsamic brussels sprouts, and a pumpkin crunch cake.  We make pumpkin pie pretty frequently this time of year so it really doesn't feel that special come Thanksgiving.  I found the pumpkin crunch cake on Pinterest and thought I would give it a shot.  I also made a cranberry compote for an event I catered this weekend.  I made plenty so that we could have some with our turkey dinner.  All of us, that is, except Dad.  He just has to have the jellied cranberry sauce.  You know the one. The one that comes out of the can in one big blob that is actually shaped like the can.  It's his favorite and good ol' mom makes sure it's on the table every year (alongside that green bean casserole).

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Happy Birthday to You

You chased me with frogs.
I cried.
You wore your green terry cloth swimsuit.
You wore it while riding your banana seat bicycle. Everywhere.
You smelled like outside.
 All the time.
You outgrew these things.

Happy Birthday to my "baby" sister!

What's up with this pose, you ask?  Back in the day when mom used to take us to have our pictures made, the photographer had Melissa pose like this.  From that day on, anytime a camera was pointed at the girl, she struck this pose.  It didn't matter what she was doing, be it riding that banana seat bike or chasing me with frogs, she stopped, threw her hands up to her face and was ready for her close up.  I'm sure that Olan Mills photographer had no clue how famous this pose was destined to be.   

Monday, November 14, 2011

Mediterranean Layer Dip

For a recent girls night I needed to bring a snack to share.  I didn't have time to stop at the store after work so I took to the "use what you have" method.  I had bought some hummus and pita chips at Sam's on my last shopping trip so that was going to be my stand by if I couldn't throw something together.  I ended up throwing something together using the stand by.  My inspiration was Mexican 7 Layer Dip.  I used the hummus as a base then chopped up some cucumber, tomato, and red onion to put on top.  I sprinkled a little dill weed over the veggies then crumbled some feta over the top.  When I was ready to serve it I drizzled the whole thing with olive oil and some fresh cracked pepper. I found that there are some similar recipes on Pinterest, so I guess I didn't invent this dip, but I used what I had to throw it together so I am taking at least partial credit. 

It was much prettier in person, my iPhone photos really aren't up to snuff.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Did You Feel That?

Here in Oklahoma we had not 1, but 2 earthquakes this weekend.  Yes, you read that right.  Earthquakes.  In Oklahoma.  Weird, huh?  We slept right through the first one that hit around 2:30 in the AM on Saturday.  The only reason I even knew it happened was thanks to my "must check Facebook immediately upon waking" habit.  People that live in my neighborhood said it woke them up but the 2 adults, 2 kids, and 4 dogs at our house slept right through it.  On Saturday, we went to some friend's house to watch the OU game and stayed after to play Scrabble and then the guys watched the Bama/LSU game.  After a day of food, football and fun we were exhausted and headed to the house.  As soon as we got home the second quake hit.  I walked in the door and it sounded like a stampede was coming my way.  Things started rattling and I literally felt the earth move under my feet.  This one was stronger than the night before, but I can't believe we were able to sleep through the first one.  People say they wouldn't want to live in Oklahoma because of the tornadoes, but at least you get a warning when a twister is coming!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

I Couldn't Have Said it Better Myself

This past weekend we celebrated our sixth wedding anniversary.  We took a day trip to one of our favorite places, Eureka Springs.  We got married there and love to get back there when we can.  The foliage this time of year is unbelievable, and we just love the vibe of the slower pace there! We shopped and ate and shopped some more.  While going on little jaunts like that are so much fun, I feel even more lucky to share my regular everyday life with such an amazing partner.  These six years have absolutely flown by and I can't wait to see what the next ones will bring.  Have you heard Blake Shelton's song God Gave Me You? He really sums it all up way better than I ever could (guess that's why he's getting paid the big bucks).
On my own I’m only
Half of what I could be
I can’t do without you
We are stitched together
And what love has tethered
I pray we never undo

Cause God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
And for when I think I lost my way
There are no words here left to say, it’s true
God gave me you, gave me you.
He gave me you.

Here's to you, the love of my life, and the life we have made.