Monday, January 31, 2011

i'm here

hi friends, i just wanted to pop in and let you guys know i am still here. i have been having some continuous bad/stressful days, and have not felt like writing it out on here. i promise i will be back soon to give you guys an update. also, i have continued to keep with all my blogger don't worry, i know what has been going on with you guys. talk to you soon :)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

All Day Long

I literally watched Brother's and Sisters ALL day
I am very behind...

And, made pasta salad with my youth.
I had a pretty fantastic day, wish I could have another one like these!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Ten Things...I Did This Week

1. Enjoyed a day off in which I spent my time watching television and cleaning the living room.

2. Had to go to a Food Handler's Training for work, so I know now that you are not suppose to eat food out of dented cans, and I am suppose to let my food cool before putting it into the fridge.

3. I enjoyed a night with the husband laying down and listening to some Andy McKee; this guy is amazing!

4. I got back into working out; hopefully I can keep it up!

5. Did some grocery shopping, so our pantry does not look like we are starving ourselves.

6. Did a fantastic job on both of my finals! (Introduction into Counseling and Biopyschology)

7. Got to spend the day shopping for a friend's birthday gift, and walked out with a little something for myself.

8. Had some fun with my husband's friends by playing Dance Central on the Kinect (I kicked all their butts!)

9. Helped a friend get her dress altered for the military ball in which I am not going to :(

10. Went to a winery and barbeque with friends to celebrate a belated birthday!

Picture of us at my favorite winery, Villa Sceriman

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Top 2 Tuesday: Spring Outfits

Wow, pretty much everyone on my blogroll participated in today's Top 2 Tuesday. That only means that I should be playing along with all my friends.

Today is Top 2 Spring Outfits

1. The first thing I like about Spring is that I am able to just throw on a cargo dress, some flats with an oversized handbag and walk out the door. Easy, comfortable, and stylish.

2. The second thing I love about Spring is the cutesy tops I get to wear. I absolutely love tops like this one below: Simple, but cute...all I have to do is throw in a couple of accessories!
What are you wearing this Spring?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Traveling in the United States

Now that Gregg and I have lived in Italy for while and have traveled to many places in Europe that we wanted to see, we are now looking at place in the United States we want to venture to eventually. These are not in any particular order:

1. New York City, New York

I apparently went to New York when I was a toddler, but do not remember one thing about it. Gregg pointed this place out, and I have to strongly agree with this pick. I think it would be a lot of fun for the two of us to go here and see what the city is all about.

2. Boston, Massachusetts

I would love to go see Boston. I always think of people chilling in a pub having a grand ole time, and I think Gregg and I would fit in here just great. It also seems like Boston would be filled with a lot of good history that we don't realize is there.

4. Phoenix, Arizona

This was Gregg's pick, but I can totally see it. I have never really thought about this area because it just seems so desert like, but apparently there are many things to do here and we have many friends that live here. We have had many people that want us to move here, but I can't see that happening...way too much for me to be scared of.

4. Chicago, Illinois

This is a pick for me because of all the shopping I here about. I would love to walk the city streets of Chicago all day long buying handbags, jewelry, shoes, clothes, etc. and then go see a musical or play with Gregg. It would be so much fun to finally experience what everyone feels when they live in a big lively city.

5. Augusta, Maine

This was another pick of mine because I always find Maine to be interesting, and I really can't explain why. I read a book once that was set in Maine, and I loved the story. I always dreamed about living in a small town where I know my neighbors, I can go enjoy a cup of coffee at a local coffee shop, and then go sailing on the weekends. I believe Maine to be this place, and I want to live it!

Man, I just can't wait. I know its going to be awhile until we able to experience any of these places, but its nice to know that there is fun available to us right in our own country.
Where do you want your next vacation to be?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Hmmm...What to Write Here?

Wow guys, thank you so much for your response's from the Question of the Day post. I took in all of your input and it has helped me realize how much I need to budget, and I am going to try it out next time I go to the grocery store.
This week has been fairly productive for me. I have gotten a lot of cleaning done which will continue into the weekend; I swear it never ends!

On Wednesday, I got to try my hand at the barbeque during work. I mean, it was only heating hot dogs up, but I felt so accomplished! I have never tried grilling, but always had the curiosity for it without letting the husband know. I like that Gregg is the "griller" in the family because it gives me a day off of cooking every now and then.

And on Thursday, I tried Smore's again. I tried them when I was a brownie in Girl Scout's and never liked the taste of marshmallows, let alone roatesd marshmallows. For year's I would sit by the fire eating the chocolate while roasting my mom marshmallows. When I tried a go at it again, I happened to enjoy them a little bit. They weren't amazing, but it hit the sweet spot for me. Later on I spent time with some youth putting a puzzle together. We apparently got in over our heads because that puzzle kicked our bottoms!

This weekend was nice and relaxing. We did the usual, cuddle/movie night on Friday, friends over on Saturday, and sleep in on Sunday! Now, I just have to finish up my last bit of homework before finals this week, and clean up after a night of great cooking. Last night, Justine made her famous bow tie pasta, and it was yummy as usual. It was so yummy that the boys were fighting over who gets the leftovers. Of course, Gregg won because this will probably be the last time we get to taste the lovely dish.

Well, I guess that's about it, I hope you guys are having a bright and sunny Sunday! :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Question of the Day: Groceries

I feel like I don't do enough of these Question of the Day's, and I always leave hearing people's responses. So, here goes another one.
As a New Year's Resolution, I decided it was important to start watching where our money goes.

To be honest, I don't look at the account as much as I should, and I probably could save a lot of money if I budget things. I know most of our money goes towards groceries though. We eat pretty well, okay...we eat great! I can't help it, I love to grocery shop.

So, my question to you is...How much do you budget on groceries and cleaning products a month?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Best Friends

Jack has been lucky to have his best friend stay with us for an entire month. They have truly become the best of friends. I know Jack enjoys having someone else at the house while Gregg and I are not at home. But sadly, Dusty leaves tomorrow and I can just see Jack having a bittersweet moment about it. He will miss his buddy, but I think he will like the fact that he is back to being the only one getting love from momma! : )

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Some Slow Cooked Apple Butter

I know I have not posted in awhile, and that will soon change. I have been very busy with side of stress. Luckily, I have a couple of posts that I have already started and just need a couple tweaks in order to post. Before I do any of that though, I wanted to share with you guys something I stumbled on just a little while ago.

Slow Cooked Apple Butter..oh yum.

Anyone that knows me will say I have a strong longing for some Apple Butter. It all started when the family took a trip up to Gatlinburg and we got to eat at the Apple Barn. Ever since then, I have been hooked! Dad always stocks up on it when we travel to Nashville because they have an Apple Barn store in the big ole mall up there.

Anyways, I am dying to try this out! It seems so easy, and what do you know, its healthy too. Now, I just have to find some cheap mason jars somewhere around here...hmm, where to look?

By the way....I got the recipe HERE!

It All Starts With the Sink

For some reason, my least favorite task in household cleaning is the kitchen. It is a place that has never really been in perfect standards and everyone knows it. I know the dishes in the sink need to be cleaned, but when I go in there and look at the task, surfing the internet just seems so much more interesting. Therefore, the dishes get neglected for another day, and this routine happens a couple times throughout the week before I just get embarressed. So, when I finally go in, the task is triple its size than if I just did it every night. Well, two nights ago, I went in and deep cleaned the kitchen. It looks so much nicer, and I feel better.

And no matter what, just a clean sink (who cares if I moved the dishes onto the table) can make my day so much more productive! I absolutely LOVE a clean sink!

So, now that my sink is clean, I have the motivation to clean a bit more around the house. However, I have bumped into a cleaning confusion state. Being in Italy has made it a lot harder to keep things as clean as you would in the states. (No wonder I always see Italians cleaning)

Okay, so I guess my shower does not have that great of a drain compared to the drains you see in the states, but everytime I shower there becomes a brown soap scum build up right around it. No matter how much I run the water until I don't see soap bubbles and how much I comet the area, it always comes back the next time I shower. UGH, its disgusting. I thought comet would be the best cleaning material to use and I was hoping not to see it until about 5 showers later, but comes back everytime I shower!

And since I am on a cleaning spree this weekend, why not catch up on all my laundry? Yea, so thats what I did. I didn't stop at two loads or 4 loads; I did a whopping 7 loads of laundry and tackled it all! Before I started all this laundry though, I have come to the conclusion that I can not smell the freshness and cleanliness of my clothes anymore. My nose has gotten use to the wonderful smell and it seems like all I get now is the smell of the heat coming from the dryer. So, I went out and bought a fabric softener and have fell IN LOVE!

Okay all must done with my cleaning talk; I have to tell you one more thing! I use to use the Windex that was pink...I think it was Berry Burst or something like that, but the commissary does not sell it anymore. So, I went for the Windex all surface cleaner with Vinegar....O.M.G. its amazing. I use it on just about everything I feel like it just lefts layers of gunk that would not come off with other cleaners I have used in the past.

I think my next project is going to be the guest bedroom which has kinda become our storage room when we are too lazy to walk downstairs to the garage, haha. There are probably a lot of things in there that we just need to toss, so hopefully I can find that motivation tonight.

And of course, I did not get paid to write this post. I just decided it would be fun to post some things I happen to love right now.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Over The Holidays

Gregg and I had a very laid back holiday season. Since Gregg had staff duty for 24 hours starting on Christmas Eve, we had to make a schedule for how things would work out.
The night before Santa came, I made Gregg's famous Spaghetti meal, packed it up, and headed to staff duty to hang out there for dinner. No spouse is allowed to hang out at staff duty, but considering it was Christmas Eve, I didn't care if we would get in trouble. We sent hours just goofing off and then around midnight, I went home to start baking my cheesecake from scratch (whew...will never do that again!) and the deviled eggs. I don't think I actually made it to bed until 3 in the morning.
I picked up Gregg at nine the next morning and it was straight off to bed for him while I did the last minute preperations of food. Five hours later, it was time to head over to the besties to have dinner. Instead of having the traditional ham, mashed potatoes, etc.; we had baby back ribs, salad, and cheesy potatoes. It sure was yummy! Gregg and I got homemade fudge, a holiday pot to hold all my cooking utensils, and popcorn from Taylor and Justine. We ended the night over there with a fun game of Cranium.
Later, we came back home to do our own little Christmas celebration. We openned the bajillion presents we had under the tree, and man oh man did Gregg get spoiled this year!
Gregg got:
3 month subscription to Xbox Live
$80.00 worth of WoW Gold
Frank Caliendo DVD
Car Cleaning Kit for his New Car
3 Hats: Carona, Dallas Cowboys, Puma
Computer Chair
Some Kind of Tool Set that makes Screw Holes
Thermos You Can Keep Warm in the Car
$50.00 giftcard to Home Depot
and more....
Gregg could not get ONE decent picture of me openning my gifts...this is as good as it gets.

I got:

A ton of scrapbooking stuff
A ton of new clothes from Forever 21
Makeup from Kiko
$50.00 giftcard to Home Depot
Frame for All Gregg's Medals

After present openning, we decided to Skype both the families. It was nice to not have a time limit where we had to be somewhere. We could just sit back and enjoy a fun, casual conversation. I don't think finished our Christmas celebration until about one in the, we were pooped!

Now, on to New Year's...

Oh, and look and see what happens AGAIN; Gregg has to work another 24 hour shift on New Year's Eve. So, I spent the night up at staff duty again eating pizza and watching movies. Unfortunately, I could not stay awake on this night, so Gregg and I celebrated midnight at 11:04. It was not everyone's happy ever after, but it was OUR happy ever after to the year.

And, just like all New Year's go, the resolutions start to be written. I wrote mine out and I am going to share them with you:

1. I would like to get pictures taken of Gregg and I. Last time we got professional pictures taken was our wedding day, and even though I love them, I would just absolutely adore some more casual ones.

2. I would like to go on another vacation with Gregg and another one with my family. I always have the best time on trips with Gregg and I was always at my highest peak of enjoyment with my family.

3. I would like to finish school this year. I feel like I have been in school forever, and it would be nice to say I am done this year. So, I am going to take on as much as I can without feel overwhelmed.

4. Drink as much wine as possible. Hey, I am in Italy...might as well enjoy it while it lasts. Also, I love sharing a glass with the hubby at night while settling down.
5. Take More Pictures! This one is always on my resolution list. I am always nervous to pull out the camera and look like the dork with the camera, but I think one can never have enough pictures!

6. Keep the House Clean More. Oh wow, do I need to work on this. I have gotten very lazy when it comes to household chores. I am always so embarresed when people walk in and see what the house looks like. So, I am going to be getting the rubber gloves, sponges, and cleanign supplies out more.

7. Be sure to Keep A Work Out Plan. Enough Said.

8. Keep My Car Clean. My car is always a disaster, so I want to make sure my car does not look like my closet anymore. This will be a lot easier once I get my Trail Blazer back and won't have to share it with the hubby.

There we go! I just hope I can keep all these resolutions going throughout the year and longer!