Friday, 31 December 2010

Wedding Recap: Getting Ready

The professional photos aren't back yet, but they should be here by New Years Eve. Until then, I'd like to share with you the pictures my friends took. First up? The getting ready pictures.

They're not squeezing me into my dress, but squeezing my dress onto me with tape because it was a little big.

All ready and texting Mike

My shoes signed by all the bridesmaids

Lyric doing her hair
 Bodie was the first to be ready.

 Lyric did my hair.
My sister did my makeup

Hotglue doing her hair.

 The dress before I stepped into it
 It took a lot of teamwork to get my dress to stay

Putting on my earrings

More teamwork!


Let's get this thing started!

Watching me get ready!

Thursday, 30 December 2010

2011 Word

Leanne at From Chaos Comes Happiness has challenged her readers to select a word to focus on during 2011. Being the word lover I am I decided to give this challenge a go.

2011 is a new year full of new opportunites, possiblities, and challenges. What word should I pick to help me embrace the new year? I started by making a list of words that I thought I might like to focus on. At the top of the list were:


All of the words I think would benefit me this year but I  think that since 2011 brings with it the first year of marriage, I choose Love.

I want to focus on loving my husband and on nurturing our relationship. I want to remember to  love even when times are busy, finances are tight and we are frustrated.

I want to focus on  loving myself. This means exercising, eating healthy,  learning to do my makeup and making time for my friends and hobbies.

I want to focus on my  love of learning and creating. I want to love learning to cook, love taking the 365 photo challenge, love decorating our new home and making our wedding scrapbook

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Crossing Off

I've accomplished several things on my list lately.


gotten married...which means I perfected my vows, and gotten comfortable enough to dance at the reception and been on a girls getaway, met Mike's mom and gotten my makeup done for a natural look. Also, my new social security card came in the mail today so I've offically CHANGED MY NAME !

I sent out Christmas cards that I made and had a real Christmas tree in my new home.

Only 80 more items to go!

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Improv Broccoli Casserole

The most loved dish a our Christmas lunch was broccoli casserole. I was delighted for several reasons. First, my mashed potatoes were a bit on the watery side so the broccoli was a chance to redeem myself. Second, the recipe was a bit of an experiment because I usually make it with cream of mushrooms and chopped up mushrooms but unfortunately I married a mushroom hater so I was forced to improvise. Here's what I came up with:

Boil and drain 2lbs frozen broccoli. Mix broccoli with about 8 ozs of chopped onions, 8oz grated sharp cheddar cheese, 1 can cream of broccoli, 1  can cream of onion and 1/4 cup of  butter/margarine. Spoon into a greased pan.

In a seperate bowl crush 36 Ritz like crackers and combine with 1/4 cup melted butter. Sprinkle on top and bake for 20 minutes at 350F.

I'd show a picture but it dissapeared too quickly!!

Monday, 27 December 2010

A Wedding Recap: Decorating

We got up Saturday morning, ate a pancake breakfast and went off to decorate the reception venue.  After decorating I was told someone had to stay in the building all day! Our reception didn't start until 7:30pm! Thankfully my father, grandfather,  the best man and maid of honor stepped up to the plate and each took shifts babysitting the building. After the rest of the bridesmaids and I showered we went over to keep Hot Glue company and I even dried my hair on the dance floor.

 Hanging paper planes made of maps
 Lyric putting together the Carribean centerpiece
 Bodie passed out after hanging too many planes
 Bodie putting together the Europe centerpiece
 Hot Glue tying on planes
 The paper garland about to go up!
 The Europe centerpiece
 The America centerpiece
 K10 put together the Asia centerpiece
 Lu and I made these awhile back but K10 prettied them up with some ribbon
 Threading the planes

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Subtle Differences

In a few hours I will have been in my new home of PA for a week. I've begun to notice subtle differences that let me know I'm no longer home. I'm not confident enough to say that they are all North/South differences because some may just be differences within family circles.

1. All of the ice cream shops are closed. The weather I suppouse, but how I would love some Bruster's!
2. No firework stands everywhere.
3. At home we lay folded blankets over the arm of the couch. Everyone's home I've been in here, they are stretched out over the back of the couch, and are adjusted to stay that way even when someone's sitting on the couch.
4. At home only my grandma's house has a toliet seat cover. They are everywhere here.
5. On a similar note, I've noticed a lot of  towels folded over the tops of toliets, asa sort of decoration.
6. Everyone asks me to repeat myself whenever I use ya'll.
7. We have counties and towns. Here we've got counties, towns, territories,  townships and boroughs. I still can't quite figure out the last three.
8. No one refers to me as a "Reb", yet everyone reffered to Mike as a "Yankee".
9. There are lots and lots of instructional signs. On the road and in stores. And boy does Walmart mean it when their sign says "exit". The automatic door won't open from the front side.
10. I got asked if i was "southern custom" to leave the peels in the mashed potatoes by Mike's mother, leading me to think she'd never seen it that way before. Although his dad said he loved them that way. To each thier own I guess.

Saturday, 25 December 2010

My First Ever Peanut Butter Pie!

Mike's family is coming over for lunch today and knowing that Mike's dad loves PB pie, I decided to look up a recipe and make one.

Here is what happened:

I made a graham cracker crust with crushed graham crackers and melted butter.

Then I whipped up the good stuff.


8 oz softened cream chz
1/2 c creamy pb
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
8 oz whipped cream
pb cups

Mix the cream chz, confectioners sugar and pb until smooth. Fold in whipped topping.  Spoon over crust and let chill overnight. Decorate with pb cups.

(If my phone would let me upload pics I would have a pretty picture to share.)

Thursday, 16 December 2010

A Sneak Peak!

My bridal portraits were uploaded today!

I don't have time to load them all on  here at the moment...but here is one to tease you with...

Or, if you can't's the link, and the password is Rachel

Monday, 13 December 2010


Ever since I recieved my totally cute cupcake print hostess apron I have been addicted to looking for new prints. I really would like a holiday one and the one being given away at LIFE OF MEG is perfect.

You should go check it out. Or you could just let me win.

Sunday, 12 December 2010

The Excitement is Building!

Everything is almost in place for the wedding. All of the centerpieces are ready and tableclothes have been found. Everything is settled with the caterer and DJ and my bridal portriat session is tomorrow at 3:30. Its been raining all weekend so I hope my dress doesn't get muddy.

What's left to do?

- Make a CD of prelude music
-Wrap thank you gifts for my parents
-Put the finishing touches on my bridesmaids gifts
- Print the poem and put it on pretty paper
-Make R for the door
-Finish centerpieces
-Print out guest book instructions
-Buy sparklers
-Buy flower girl petals
-Print out wedding cake recipe for the food table
-Finish making Mike's gift
-Print my vows and put them on pretty paper
-Print schedules for the wedding party
-Finalize the menu for the bridal luncheon
-Finishing packing 
-Make final ceremony descions
- Get my room cleaned up so that my bridesmaids have somewhere to sleep.

Here it goes!

Friday, 10 December 2010

Giveaway Winner!

The giveaway has ended! Thanks to everyone who took the time to enter.

I asked my sister to pick a number for the winner and she picked.....


The seventh entry was held by....

Okie Rednecks


Don't forget!

The giveaway ends today!

Still low entries so don't forget to enter!

I'll pick a winner tonight!

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Sunday, 5 December 2010

What Does Your Bed Say About You?

Mike and I have been on the hunt for our bedroom set. He bought his last set with my input, but since he sold it before moving to Korea, we are now looking for our first set as a couple.

What does he want? Something that says "A man lives here. This is the king's bedroom". He said he wanted detail, and thick posts.

And that is exactly what he showed me. Seriously, some of these beds could have been in King Henry's vacation home. They aren't ugly, but aren't exactly my style.

This one is my least favorite, its too "blocky"

What am I looking for in a bed? Simpe, airy and elegant. Wanna see my candidates? The pictures won't save so I'll have to send you to the links really quickly . Here they are:
Paula Deen Home Savannah Poster Bedroom Set in Tobacco - 93225 / 93226 / 93227

Lexington Long Cove Newport Poster Bed in Midnight - 01-0801-17XC

As you can tell, we prefer completely different beds. Mike thinks a bed like the Paula will break too easily and I just don't like the look of the huge blcky  beds. So, we found some beds we'd consider compromising on.
Wynwood Granada Mansion Bedroom Set in Cordillera Pine
I like ^ that bed the best out of the compromise options. 

This is my least favorite of the compromise options
Which of the beds is your favorite? Which one do you think is the best compromise. AND! DON'T FORGET TO ENTER MY GIVEAWAY....It'd make a great gift for a little one in your life

Saturday, 4 December 2010

Estate Sale Savings!

Lyric and I woke up at 7am this morning, stopped by Starbucks and then headed to an estate sale in a nearby town.

I bought nice wooden pepper and salt grinders and a christmas dish for $3.50 total. Lyric got a good deal on a cute blue chair, eiffel tower notepad and a casserole dish. After the sale we were on such a high we went and bought a newspaper so we could track down some yard sales.

We went to three and I bought a pair of earrings, another Chrismas dish a lazy susan and a pack of jar openers for a total of $2! What a great morning! Now, I've got to start studying for finals!

Here are the pics! (Oh, and don't forget to enter my giveaway!)

Lyrics blue and yellow chair

Friday, 3 December 2010

Chocolate Making and Blogversary Giveaway!

Being the chocoholic that I am, I was given a chocolate making kit from Glee Gum to review.

The kit is designed to teach children about the science beyond chocolate and I think it does a fantastic job. The steps are easy to follow, and the reasoning clearly explained. I also enjoyed reading about the history of chocolate on the back of the instructions. And the best part? EVERYTHING YOU NEED IS INCLUDED! It seriously couldn't get any better. Oh yeah, wait a minute...they included two cocoa beans for you to taste!

 Basically, I melted the cocoa butter in the microwave, stirred in cocoa powder and confectioners sugar, waited for the included thermometer to reach a certain temp, added in the starter crystals, poured into paper cups and then stuck those babies in the fridge for 15 minutes. And then...taste time! I liked the chocolate, but it was very sweet, so I couldn't eat a lot of it in one setting. But one piece is just enough for tiny tummies. And adding the optional vanilla (not included) would probably help tone down the sweet taste a bit.

I think my little cousins would love these kits!

Now its your turn! In honor of my one year blogversary, one luck winner (continental USA only, sorry!) will win their choice of Make Your Own Chewing Gum, Gummies or Chocolate Kit. Here's how you can win (Please leave your email address so I can get in touch with you):

Mandatory entry: Leave a comment saying which kit you would like if you win.

Bonus entries (one comment per entry)

1. Be a follower and leave a comment telling me so!
2. Share the giveaway on FB, your blog or on Twitter. Leave me a comment saying you did.

Good luck! The winner will be picked on December 10th!

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Making Progress on My List!

This morning I bought really cute address labels with my new address on them! That was item number 7 under "Domesticness" on my list of 101 things to do.

The address on the labels is for our new townshouse. All I've seen of it so far is pictures from a cell phone, so I'm very excited to get up to PA and see it and startign setting up our home.

But I have heard that its a two bedroom, has big closets in the master bedroom and has all new flooring and paint and a new dishwasher. Sounds good to me! I'll do a post with picutres once I move in!
Mike has moved in already so that he can be closer to his NEW JOB! But the poor guy is sleeping on the floor and watching two TV channels. Hopefully the couch delivery will come through on Friday, and they will hook up the phone, internet and cable on Saturday so he can have a little more convienences- and so that I can actually have a conversation with him- there is no cell service that covers the area so we haven't been able to talk very much. But, only a little over a week and we'll be married!

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Review: Eat, Pray, Love (book)

I was able to buy a copy of Eat Pray Love with gift certificates I earned through  my Swagbucks. Here are my  thoughts on the book:

Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat Pray Love is a collection on 108 tales strung together by Gilbert’s insights and humor. The novel, as you may know from the major motion picture, documents her adventures as she travels across Italy, India and Indonesia in an attempt to recover from her divorce and subsequent fling and in the end reassemble herself as the person she wants to be.

She travels to Italy to indulge herself with pleasure- good food, learning a beautiful language, and going the places she wants to go, all with little to no responsibility. In Italy, she begins her healing process. Moving onto India, Gilbert studies mediation through yoga. She becomes in tune with her God and her inner self. Afterwards, she finds balance in Bali when she helps her new friend buy a home, and falls in love with Brazilian expatriate.

Whether it was the high expectations created from the hype, or the “each tale a bead on the japa mala” writing style employed, I waked away from Eat Pray Love, a bit disappointed. There was a good story, a good message, but I didn’t feel as consumed by the words as I like to feel when reading for pleasure. (I like to think that it wasn’t the novels fault, but mine, I came to the book expecting impossibly too much from all of the talk I’d heard about both the book and movie.) Perhaps, that was the intended effect, to get you to think more about the book’s messages than to take you along on a ride, with the only expectation for you is to sit back and enjoy the ride. If that’s the goal, then I’d say the book succeeded. Either way, I think Eat Pray Love is worth a shot- maybe you’ll learn something.

Have you read it? What did you think? Have you seen the movie? Is it good?