Thursday, 31 December 2009

Making Paula Deans Chocolate Ooey Gooey Butter Cookies

I saw Paula Dean make these the other day and I decided I wanted to make them for New Years. They were very easy to make and turned out rather yummy. Here are some pics and the recipe

1 tsp vanilla
powdered sugar
1- 18 oz box of moise chocolate cake mix (I used Butter Fudge Cake mix by Duncan Hines)
1- 80z brick of room temp cream chz
1 egg
1 stick room temp butter

Preheat oven to 350. Beat cream chz and butter until smooth. Beat in the egg. Beat in vanilla. Beat in cake mix. Cover and refrigerate for 2 ours. Roll into tablespoon sized balls. Roll in powdered sugar. Place 1.5 inches apart. Cook for 13 minutes. Sprinkle with more powdered sugar if desired. Taste.

Wasn't that easy?

HWW Week One Day Three

Todays workout? The Calorie Scorch Walk

Calorie-Scorch Walk

Activity Speed Intensity

0:00 Warm-up 3-3.5 mph Light: You can sing

3:00 Cardio walk 3.5-4 mph Moderate: You can chat with a friend

4:00 Speed walk 4+ mph Vigorous: You can barely talk

4:30 Repeat 10-minute cardio walk and 30-second speed walk intervals five more times

12:00 Cardio walk 3.5-4 mph

13:00 Cool-down 3-3.5 mph

15:00 Finish

This workout was more my style because I didnt have the chance to get bored! It was over and my calfs were burning before I even knew it. I think I'm going to change things up a bit and do 50ish regular situps on nonbelly days and a leisure mile on nonwalking workout  days. Mostly because my belly is nowhere as toned as it used to be or can be.

Recap and Resoultions

So, I haven't hadthis blog for a year so don't have a lot of posts to link back to but I'm still going to flag up some great things that happened this year.

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Been in a Crafty Mood Lately

So I've been on the hunt for new scrapbooking and cardmaking goodies.

Last night that meant I stumbled onto The Best Scrapbooking Supplies on the Web. This site has a great variety of tools, paper, and embellishments for scrapbooking and cardmaking. And I love thier online tutorials! Now, I haven't bought anything from here but I did build a huge wishlist last night!

And today that meant a trip to Hobby Lobby. And today was the perfect day too as they had a 1/2 off sale on all  things stamping and scrapping! I walked out with a set of red prescored cards, a few cool papers, cupcake stamps,cupcake stickers, valentines sticker, ink, and a clear mounting block for $25! Score!

Too bad most of the stuff I need to complete a project with is already back at school. I did make a cute "I love you" card to send with the fiance's belated Christmas present. But of course I forgot to take a picture of it. Hopefully it'll make it back home (it'd better!) and I can post the picture of it then!

Healthiest Walking Workout Week 1 Day 2

Today was Day Two of my new workout plan. I was planning on doing the given workout plus a leisurely mile walk because I'm much mor sedentary here than I was in Scotland. But I'm not feeling very well so I just did the regular workout. Todays plan called for the Belly Blast Routine.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

This Chocoholic Has Had TOO Much...

...chocolate and other goodies over the holidays. Combine that with no real exercise since exam week and we've got a disaster. That being said I'm trying to tone down the goodies while I tone up myself. After all, the fiance will be home in 8 months and I can't be looking like a slob!

I've discovered the Healthiest Walking Workout and I started that today.

Chicken Chili

This amazing chicken chili recipe came from a recipe my mom found in Southern Living. It was done so quickly there wasn't anytime for pictures!

Heres what happened:

3-4 cups of precooked chicken. (Ended up being a whole bag of tyson grilled)
4 cans of navy beans- drained
1 can of chicken broth
14 ounces of chopped green chilis
chili seasoning
red pepper seasoning
1 onion chopped

Bring it to boil and let simmer for 30 minutes. Top with cheese. I used cheddar and my mom used swiss. However, I think it would be best with montery jack and fresh bacon crumbles and a dollop of sour cream..

Monday, 28 December 2009

Making Buckeyes

We didn't make our traditional Christmas treat so I thought I'd make them today.

I dump everything I need into the bowl and start to mix. I didn't realize that setting one on my mother's new hand mixer had enough power to launch a rocket! Seriously, peanut butter and powdered sugar shot  across the room. After situating myself an arms length away from the bowl and mixer I began again.

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Come on People- It's 2009.

Apparently news of engagement has stirred up some, shall we say, tension in my family. My fiance has never met my dad (my dad turned down all invitations to meet him). From that you can infer that he didn't ask my dad permission to marry me. And that apparently was a very very bad thing to do.

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Thoughts on Sherlock Holmes

My mom and I went and saw Sherlock Holmes tonight. We paid $2 a seat. It was nice.

The movie had a good storyline and great actors. Although it wasn't quite what I was expecting I'd say it was a success.

Some parts of the movie were slow. My mother commented that she especially didnt like the slow motion fight scenes. Basically, Sherlock would explain how he would take down someone in slow motion before the scene actually happend. I'm not a fanof that technique either. I don't like to be drawn out of the story.

Overall, I enjoyed the movie and it was well worth the two bucks. Have you seen it? What'd you think?

Previews for other movies that interested me included the Sorcerer's Apprentice and The Bounty Hunter.

Friday, 25 December 2009

Yay for Christmas Gifts!

I've recived some really great Christmas gifts this year. Here are a few of my favorites:

Best of 2009: Gift

I'd planned out this post before the recent events. Previously I'd thought some wise advice from fellow bloggers about how to deal with my parents and how to approach marriage was the best gift I'd ever recieved.

Well, now it takes a close second to the best birthday/christmas all in once gift I've ever recieved- Mike  asking me to marry him. I know that sonds cliche, but the man I I'm with was "Mr. I'm never gettting married". He tells me that ten years ago, he would have picked a one night sand over a lifetime of happiness. He told all of his friends he would be the last to get married. All but one minister is. As he's currently in South Korea, there's still time.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Way Behind on Best of 2009

I'm going to attempt to catch up with the Best of 2009 Challenge in this post.

Car Ride: I guess my favorite car ride would be when the fiance and I drove from WV to VA to SC, stopping in VA for New Year's. It was a nice ride weather and traffic wise and I got to spend a lot of time just talking to my sweetheart.

New Person: This one's a bit toughier. I'll have to have a op 3 favorite new people of 2009.

1. My Converse Little Sister, Emma- I haven't met her in person yet but from what I've learned so far, she's an amazing young women who I'm going to have tons of fun with starting in January.
2. Katie - Candadian chick I met in Glasgow. She's amazing and has a wonderful sense of humor. And makes yummy cookies.
3. Caitlin - A tequila loving Californian I met in Glasgow. We're both writers and she's not Dumbo.

Webtool: Skype and Webcam. Without it I'd never be able to see my fiance or talk to him as much. Enough of a reason.

Its Christmas Time!

I spent the day in NC yesterday at my mom's parents. M grandad just had knee replacement surgery, there were 2 extra kids as my uncle recently gained two stepkids and my grandmother got me the same jacket she got me last year.

I did get to talk to my fiance today though. Its Christmas day in South Korea- very early Christmas day. I feel bad that he is spending it alone. This is the third Christmas since we've known each other that we haven't been together. That means we haven't spent a Christmas together yet. Back in the spring we made a bet as to whether we'd be together now. I bet we would, he bet not. He won. 

I'll update you on the Christmas goodies tomorrow. I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas!

Saturday, 19 December 2009

I Can Sense the Family Drama and I'm Still in Scotland

Ok, so I wrote before that I've recently gotten engaged to my boyfriend of 2 years. I haven't had the chance to tell my family yet because well, todays the first day they've called me since its happened. And I didnt tell them today because over Skype just didnt seem like a good idea, and because well, I'm sick and just wanted to get off the phone as quickly as possible

I leave for home at 3:30 tomorrow morning. So, I'm going to be telling them soon. But part of me is dreading it. For several reasons. Reason Number One: My dad has never even met my fiance. But this is my dads fault not my fiances. My dad has refused all invitations to meet him and never extended any. Simply on the basis that the believes my fiance is too old for me.

Reason Number Two is a newer reason. In todays phone call my mother mentioned that there had been a debate within her family about whether or not I should recieve Christmas gifts, since they were buying for just the grandchildren. I am a grandchild. I am not a child. This is where the debate lays. I want to say that while it's nice to get presents its not a big deal to me either way. In fact, I didnt even know about this debate until after the fact. My mother argued because she believed I should recieve gifts. Her reasoning wasn't to bring attention to the fact that I am in fact a grand, but to convince everyone I am still a child. Thanks mom. I'd rather not have the presents and be acknowledged as an adult.

While telling me about the debate, my mother made her opinion of me quite clear. In fact, she said, "You are still a child. You are still a child. You are still a child." I think she was trying to brainwash me. Boy, will she be in for a shock when I tell her I'm getting married.

Reason Number Three: I'm just not sure of the best way to bring this up. In the car on the way home from the airport, call a family meeting  (which my family doesnt do), wait until the ring arrives and be like "suprise", nonchalantly "by the way Mike asked me to marry him"". Opinions?

Catching up with Best of 2009: Word & Shop

I'm behind on this Best of 2009 Challenge, but I've been sick so I forgive myself. Anyway, on with the challenge.

I've learned quite a few new words this year, courtesy of Scotland. Many I've never seen in print though so I'm not sure how to spell them. The one I've heard the most is minging. (Thank you to Jules for providing the correct spelling. )Pronounce it as if the last "g" is silent. It means gross or disgusting. This word in no way encapsulates 2009. That word would probably be "new".

Now for my favorite shop of 2009 thats an easy one. This spring I fell in love with Aerie by American Eagle. This place has the cutest underwear ever. And I have a HUGE underwear buying habit. A girl can not  have enough cute underwear or cute shoes. And to add to my love of all things Aerie- the Alist Card where you can earn points towards discounts as well as (my favorite part) get a free gift every month. I can not wait until I'm back into the states so that I can hit up Aerie! (Oh and they have great smelling perfume too!)

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

ATM Favorites


My current food crush: Roasted Hazelnut Yougut. So creamy, so nutty, so have to have it right now. Love eating this for breakfast. I've only found this at Waitrose in Glasgow, but once I get home I'll be hunting around for it. Want it for dessert? Add bits and pieces of chocolate. Especially good with hazelnut and currant chocolate bits!


I'm not sure how new these are but my mom brought them over when she visited and I've fallen in love. Wait...did I just say I've fallen in love with laundry detergent? 'Fraid so. Purex makes 3-in-1 laundry sheets. You take a sheet put it in the washer, and you've got your laundry detergent and fabric softner. Move the sheet to the dryer with the clothes and you've got your dry sheet. Theres no mess. No need to lug 3 bottles to the laundry room, or remember to add in dryer sheets.


I'm still in a country music mood, but its turning more into a country Christmas mood. Lovely.

I've recently started reading another one of those "trashy romance paperback"s . What can I say? They're my guilty pleasure. Excpet I never feel guity about them.  Its "The Charade" by Laura Lee Guhrke. Its about a run away indentured servant forced to spy for the Tories, caught by a handsome Whig, and forced to spy for him. Haven't found out which side she'll choose in the end but I have a sneaking suspiscion it'll be the handsome Whig.


In Belfast, I saw the BEST AD EVER. Unfortunately, I can't remember what the product was so if you know what I'm describing PLEASE comment and let me know. I know it was for some bottled drink. Possibly orange juice.  The ad features (knockoff) Ken and Barbie dolls about to get it on after Ken showers. Well, Ken's  towel drops and Barbie notices Ken is missing his "important bits". The scence changed to Ken and Barbie in bed, Barbies back to Ken, Ken laying on his back. The announcer says something about how Mystery Company has all the "important bits" and the drink bottle appears where Ken's "important bits" should be. Love it, love it, love it. If only I could remember what the ad was for!!

Its from a Skirt!setter blog:

"I am not graceful, and I have the barest of coordination skills. I am Steve Urkel in a bra" - Cathey_Franke

This quote totally describes me and my attempts to exercise! It why I hate doing more than machines at the gym because I feel like everyones watching me struggle and goof up. Even if they're not.

Best of 2009: Tea/Coffee (I don't like either)

Tinderbox in Glasgow serves the most amazing drink.

Their hot chocolate comes served like a lady in a rich brown evening gown and crystal earrings. Steaming, rich, chocolate comes in a tall, clear glass. The top of the drink is covered in melted marshmallows and cream. The marshmallows are drizzled with chocolate.

This is a drink to take your time with. Sip it. Slowly through the straw. Its too rich to rush through. Start with the foam and marshamllows. Swish them around your tongue. Savor the fluff lush heaven.  The glass may be heavy, but the sensation of the cream and marshmallows entering your mouth is worth it. Work your way down to the chocholcate. That first taste of almost cold marshmallows and cream mixed with the hot chocolate is enough to make a woman moan. Occasionally swirl the straw around to make sure none of the chocolate is stuck to the bottom. You can drink from the straw now if you want. Finish off the chocolate before its gets too lukewarm

I'm telling you. If you ever get the chance to stop by Tinderbox, order a hot chocolate to sit-in, kick back and enjoy. (Be prepared to spend the equivalent of about $5 though). Don't do it as takeaway. Its just not the same .

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Best of 2009: Packaging

My favorite packaging of 2007 also happens to be somehting I discovered in Belfast. Look at you Belfast, you're just one happening little city!

Its a pizza box from Little Wing. Little Wing is a very cute pizzeria that is on top of the game.  Heres the takeaway box I loved:

Hmm. The photo thing is playing games with me and won't let me make the picture any bigger at the moment. But if you can't tell, its a blue and white photo of a VW bug. And they have smaller triangular shaped boxes if you have smaller portions to take home. Little Wing has given a unique, attention grabbing twist to a stale (take away world) necessity. If I saw someone carrying these takeaway boxes I'd want a closer look.  My artsy friend even asked if she could just have a box to do something artsy with.

Here are our other (also small) pictures from Little Wing (FYI: All Little Wing photos are courtesy of Caitlin Mohney)

This isn't part of the challenge, but I want to give my opinion on the worst packaging I've discovered in 2009 as well. I think the winner of that award would be boxed wine. Wine can connote so many different things and so can its packaging. Boxed wine= cheapy and icky. Enough said.                                                       

Monday, 14 December 2009

"American Night" in Glasgow

Tonight may have been our last "Amercian" themed dinner in Glasgow. Most of us are headed home at the end of the week- to GA, SC and CA. Others are just home for the holidays and then back for a second semseter at Uni. Some of the girls and I made chili and cornbread.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Best of 2009: Food

This one came as a no-brainer as I was recently introduced to a new food on my trip to Belfast. However, my newly discovered, amazing food is not traditionaly Irish but Spanish.

It's chocolate dipped churros.

I had them at the Belfast Christmas Market and they were delicious. They're basically just deep-fried pastry strips. But Caitlin tells me if you get true churros, they're even better because they're also covered in cinnamon sugar. I'm in.

Here's a picture from

Friday, 11 December 2009

Best of 2009: Place

Hmmm. Whats been my favorite place of 2009? I could probably list quite a few. (My fiance *sqeals* hates my inability to pick one thing.)

I love Greenville, SC. Its a vibrant city thats not too big. I could live there for years. Theres always something to do, from the mouse scavengar hunt, indoor putput and outdoor theater. Its really a lovely town.

The spanish restuarant I went to for my birthday last night was amazing. Cafe Andulaz. A tapas restaurant. I had amazing honey chicken and caramel cheesecake and raspberry/rum drinks. Yum. The atmosphere was nice too. Very warm cozy and lively. It was very welldecorated. I loved that there were big comfy pillows on the booths. If you're ever in Glasgow I HIGHLY recommend it.

But my FAVORITE place in the whole universe?

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Its My Birthday!

I woke up this morning and went to breakfast at Oran Mor, a church thats been converted into a restaurant/bar/theater. Its gorgeous in there and my french toast was delish!

Then I went shopping with the birthday money my parents gave me and bought a new plaid wallet (spirit of Scotland) and earrings (celtic design). I took pics but my flat has crap lighting and they didnt turn out so well.

I got back from  my morning out and talked with my boyfriend who.....................

Best of 2009 Challenge: Music

I'm suppoused to pick my favorite album of 2009 for this one but I don't really have a favorite. I can tell you about my favorite songs of the year.

In no particular order:

As stated in a previous post I love Darius Rucker's Forever Road.Listen
This song  makes my "best of " list becase it reminds me of the way Mike and I work things out.

Lonestar's Amazed  Listen.  He sang this song to me. It always reminds me of him.

Joey and Rory's Cheater Cheater. Listen.  I should probably clarify that this song in no way reminds me of my current relationship! Its a cute song, fun to sing in the car. And Joey and Rory are such a cute couple.
I've also had a Kid Rock obsession this year as well. Maybe due to bamajam. I've listened to and loved everything from All Summer Long to Half Your Age.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

I Love Cupcakes!

I love love love cupcakes. So these ornaments would be perfect for me:

Taking the Best of 2009 Challenge: Challenge of the Year

I have to say the hardest thing I've done this year is what I'm currently doing. I'm not sure if thats studying abroad or being away from my longterm boyfriend for a year. Perhaps its a combination of both?

Here's why:

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Some Things I Want To Do (with this blog and in general)

1. Rework the ending to "True Love"
2. Finish "And The Thunder Rolls" (both are my short stories)
3. Learn to cook and chronicle my attempts (on here)
4. Do a color blog week/month (on here)
5. Make it through my cupcake recipe library and share my results (on here)
6. Learn to decorate cakes
7. Make greeting cards
8. Post my favorite quotes as I stumble upon them. (obviously, on here)
9. Post links to cool new products (hey, I'm a marketing student)
10. Put together a writing portfolio
11. Share my ATM (At This Moment) Favorites

I Love Country Music

I love how the songs always tell a story. And that the stories, even though they maybe sad at times- they are real life stories. They're things that can and do really happen. The feelings in the songs are raw and real. I've been listening to a lot of music the past few days. Mostly Christmas music but this morning was an all country morning.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009


Since this is my first post in this blog I wanted to introduce myself and what I hope to do here. I'm a woman with tons of goals, ranging from new recipes to try, books to read, novels to write and businesses to start. I've got tons of interests. I'm currently pursuing a BFA in Writing and minoring in Marketing and History. Fun stuff. I love every bit of it.

Here, I'm hoping to share my interests, track my goals, and flag up interesting things. As I have two other blogs at the moment (one of which pays), this ones a little lower on the totem pole of priorities but I'm going to do my best not to abandon it.

I hope to "get started" with more interesting posts by tomorrow night.