Thursday, September 30, 2010

Our new favorite cleaning tool



Mr. Clean Magic Sponge. 10 100 points for you, Mr. Clean.  Our apartment has never been cleaner and we're just getting started! We got a box of these guys from Home Depot (random, I know, but they were in the middle of an aisle and I've been wanting to try them because Adam's sister told me she liked them).  They were absolutely worth the money.  Our floors are clean, our sink is clean, our stovetop and oven controls are clean, the fridge is clean, the tub is clean....the walls are getting clean (I need to get a chair to reach the top....)

We just got re-excited about these guys today and I just had to come write about it!  The only ones I've used are the original ones, but Julia said there is a bathroom one that works really well, so I'm going to have to try it!  I found out they have several other varieties too...including a mop version!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters



It's been a while since I've written up my miscellaneous thoughts...so I figure it's about time!


  1. I have a serious addition to Candy Corn.  I relapse every fall when Wal-Mart puts them right at eye level on the candy aisle.  I eat them till I feel sick...and then I eat about 10 more before I finally put the bag away!!! :)
  2. I made a skirt Saturday.  Whenever I wear it, I'll put up a picture of it. :) It's pretty basic, just a blue cotton skirt.  I have a feeling it will match a lot of things though! :)
  3. We were both pretty exhausted yesterday.  I have no excuse for me haha! Adam, on the other hand, has an excuse because he drove between Birmingham and Tuscaloosa all week and then back home Friday.  Saturday he worked and it was a game day, so that's always interesting! More people in town = more health issues & more chances of wrecks = more work for the firemen. (I really am amazed that there aren't that many fires during all the tailgating since there are likely lots of folks who don't know what they're doing...all packed into one town...grilling at the same time!) 
  4. Oh...where I was going with that last thought...we were both really tired all day yesterday.  After we slept till almost noon (I don't like sleeping late, but what can you do? haha) we watched A LOT of The Office on Netflix.  We finished up Season 3 and are about halfway through Season 4...maybe further?  Seasons 1-5 are on the Instant Netflix and Season 6 is on DVDs...so I guess we'll have to move those to the top of the queue soon! :)
I suppose that's about all today! Not too much going on right this moment.  I'm relaxing on the couch catching up on reading blogs/getting ideas and Adam's creating a soup concoction that already smells good. :)

Squash Casserole

Back before Adam left for Fire College (last week...see...told you I was behind in my blogging...but I'm catching up! :) ) I went to market and bought some fresh squash.  The day he left, I made some squash casserole...it turned out so good! :) I got the recipe from my Auburn Cookbook.  I made a few changes (as always...) so I'm going to put them in here!

2 eggs
1 10.75 ounce can cream of chicken soup
splash of milk
2 cups cooked summer squash
at least 1 cup cracker crumbs
1 cup shredded cheese
cooking spray
1/4 cup shredded cheese for the top
1/4 cup cracker crumbs for the top


  • Beat the eggs well.  Add soup and milk, stir until blended.
  • Add the squash, 1 cup of the cracker crumbs and 1 cup of cheese. Stir.
  • Spray a 1 1/2 quart dish with cooking spray.
  • Pour the squash mixture into the dish and sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese and 1/4 cup cracker crumbs.
  • Bake at 375* for 20 minutes.

I forgot to take pictures of it when it was done..but here is the squash cooking!! :)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fireplace

Over at Funky Junk Interiors, they're doing a Saturday Night Special on Fireplaces.  We have a one-of-a-kind fireplace that I just have to link up! :)

I've lived in a Residence Hall on campus at my University for the last 6 years.  Our heating/air conditioning units aren't very decorative, so to spruce things up, Adam made me a mantle to go on my unit my third year on campus.  This past Christmas, Dad had his cousin make us a fireplace to go with our mantle! (She owns a sign business making vinyl signs and decals.) For our fireplace, the put the vinyl on a huge magnet.

Before:
(This is actually the unit in the den/kitchen, but they look the same..this one is just a little longer.)

After:
Ta-da! The magnetic fireplace stays on the metal unit and the mantle just rests on top of the unit.
...oh, and we seem to have lost one of our vents during moving :/
But...he got those plastic air redirectors that you put on floor vents to make the air come towards the room so that the air would redirect out of the mantle instead of just cooling off the top of the mantle.



Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

Banana Fritters

One of my residents and I both had some bananas that needed to be gotten rid of...so we looked up some interesting recipes for bananas while we watched the game tonight.  We loved the idea of Banana Icing, Banana Sorbet, and Banana Apple cupcakes...but we settled on Banana Fritters! :)

We found the recipe at allrecipes.com Here's a link and a screenprint! :) (Click the image to make it bigger).
We wound up using the good parts from four very ripe bananas rather than the two bananas it suggested.


And of course...pictures! :)

How cute sitting in pretty chocolate...

These were the funny looking ones while they were frying, but still yummy. :)

YUMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We got a little photo crazy waiting on the rest to fry...

And when the oil got a little low...we made a Funnel Cake!!!!! :)

Beth showing off her fritter arranging skills! :)

Wonderful.

How pretty. :)


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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Honey Nut Chicken

One of my residents had been talking about how wonderful this recipe was that her mom found on the Food Network website.  It's delicious! :)  Honey Nut Chicken with Barbecued Succotash from Rachael Ray. Yum. :)  I'm not going to rewrite the recipe here because it's very well written at the original website.  The only thing we changed was that we didn't include the hot sauce.  Instead of the Montreal Seasoning by McCormick that the recipe recommended, we used the Israeli Spice Rub from Rachael Ray's website.  My grandmother had mixed up some of this a while back and it's really good! :)  For the barbecued succotash, we used a yellow onion instead of a red onion and left out the red bell pepper.

PS I saw on the Food Network site that you can print the recipes as notecard sizes.  Here's a link to the recipe card size Honey Nut Chicken if you want to put it in a recipe box or a recipe binder ((Julia...that's your cue to hit print when you pick out a box or a binder. :) ))

What's in my purse (and backpack)

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I'm linking up with Nice Girl Notes for "What's In Your Bag" today!  Since I carry my backpack about as often as I carry my purse...I figured I should link up both of them!

My Free Kavu :) (I'm a bargain shopper...) & my backpack my Mom got me (she's a bargain shopper too!!)
Notice the red Delta tag still on my backpack from when I left the Nice, France airport? Adam makes fun of me for keeping it on there...but it's my souvenir!! :) There's also still security stickers on the zippers...


And the contents...
My backpack is where my Handy Dandy notebook lives (these notebook/binders (Five Star Flex Hybrid) are amazing...I been using this one since I was planning my wedding, and have used it for my classes ever since.  It feels like a notebook, but works like a binder because you can add dividers and more paper.  At the same time, you can flip everything around like a notebook. :) They're basically just awesome.
Oh, back to my backpack contents...
  1. Handy Dandy notebook
  2. my polka dotted planner, 
  3. my green Gideon's Bible I got on campus one day a few years ago, 
  4. some 5 gum, 
  5. contact solution, 
  6. an old business card of one of my Sunday School teachers from years ago, 
  7. my side purse I made to take to France (which now serves as a perfect pencil/pen holder), 
  8. and two floating pens that needed to be put back in the pencil/pen holder.
Sometimes a long-sleeved tshirt winds up in there...since it's not in there, we'll assume my most recent classroom was cold!

My purse contents...
  1. My change purse I bought in Nice at Market...it has a cigale on the front. :) I'm so glad I bought it!
  2. notecards to study for my recent Exercise Physiology Test
  3. Study sheet for that same test
  4. a list of houses I felt like looking at the other day when I was going to take a Sunday drive....sometimes it's just fun to go look at houses...good way to learn random streets in town as well!
  5. copy of a purchase order from a recent hall activity (the one where my girls cooked delicious food for everyone!!!)
  6. wallet from Adam's grandma that everyone compliments me on
  7. checks
  8. Campus Cash coupons
  9. Nail Buds travel nail files :) They come in handy
  10. 2 pens
  11. a Disney princess pencil...the kind you change the lead holders out...you used to get them at Book Fair! They were awesome..found these in the Target $1 section once. And I take a Princess pencil with me to tests in case I need encouragement while I'm writing (or a pretty distraction...)
  12. little packet of bobby pins that came from Claire's for about a dollar...so worth it as well.


Friday, September 24, 2010

Catherine is Clearly a best friend!!!! :)

My wonderful friend Catherine sent me this today! We share an insane love for coffee and she found this nifty little car when she was on StumbleUpon...

A Coffee-Powered Car...





It gets about 56 espressos per mile apparently! :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

I'm Back!

I know, I know....I haven't posted a blog in a week! I'm officially a slacker in that area.  On the other hand, I've been studying for my Exercise Physiology test this week.  This is a summary of what's been running through my head...





I feel like I did pretty well!  I know I messed up a few little details, but every question answered, I at least got the big picture right (I hope!).

Besides that this week, I used my recipe for Banana Oatmeal Cookies and cooked it in an 8x8 pan to make it more like a breakfast bar or snack on-the-go.  They turned out really well! Next time I'll make it in a 9x12 instead because in the 8x8 I had to cook it for 35 minutes at 350 because they were so think.

I also made some squash casserole with turned out really well.  I used fresh squash from the Farmer's Market! :) I'll post that recipe later! :)

Tonight some of the girls in my building are cooking dinner for everyone...it's our Family Dinner. (They all call each other sisters.) :) :) I'll post some pictures and some yummy recipes as a result of tonight's dinner! :) ((Have I mentioned I love the girls in my building this year? I did? Ok, just checking!! :) ))

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Zumba!!



So I didn't run today, but that's because 5 of my residents talked me into going to Zumba!!! It was so much fun!  I danced for about an hour, so I got quite the workout. (Although I'm quite sure I'll feel it in the morning!)  If you've never heard of Zumba, it's something along the lines of aerobic salsa remix dance...(that's just my definition hahaha). Here's the real description from the Zumba website.  I was looking for a  video of Zumba and came across a Today show episode where they they featured Zumba!

Sorry I didn't take any pictures, but I know I looked rough....so I didn't want any pictures taken hahaha!

At the end of this month we're going to do Zumba in our building with DVDs that we can rent from the main Housing office.  I've never done Zumba with a video before, but I'm thinking it'll be really good (and a lot a fun when it's a bunch of our girls in one room learning to dance together!! :) )

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - New Curtain Decor & Dinner Tonight (with Leftovers to freeze!)


Adam picked out the buttons for our new curtain tie-back I made. :)



Spicy Pumpkin Soup Mix from World Market = really delicious, really simple, and makes LOTS.  This is what we have leftover...after Adam ate a bunch and I ate a bunch.  Some is going in the freezer, and some is going in the fridge for later this week! :)  I may make a casserole with some of the leftovers like I did with the leftover Broccoli Cheddar soup!

365 Miles in 365 Days

I've got a plan.  I'm going to run (at least) 365 miles in 365 days.  I used to run almost daily and would run a few 5Ks a semester.  For whatever reason, I stopped doing so well in the keeping up with my running (and I'm an Exercise Science major...tsk tsk Wendy!)

So I've decided I need to set a goal other than just "I'm going to run a 5K" (done it) or "I'm going to run a 10K" (by when specifically? this year? next year? next week?) or "I'm going to run a marathon" (that just sounds intimidating right now!).  Besides, signing up for races involves money, and right now, I just want to run for fun.  I DO want to do another race soon, but I don't want that to be my only goal. So, between September 10, 2010 and September 10, 2011 (9/10/11 haha! I really didn't do that on purpose!) I'm going to run at least 365 miles.

I'm keeping up with my distances on my new tab I added a few days ago called Running Log.  I'm not starting off running every day, but eventually, I'll be running more than one mile a day, so I should catch up with myself!

One year for my birthday, one of my friends gave me a really cool planner where you recorded how far you ran, how you felt while you were running, races you ran (and your times) and you could even jot down the weather if you wanted.

I just found it online!!  I'm going to hold off on buying the 2010 edition, but I think I just might invest in the 2011 edition. (If it gives you any idea of how long it's been since I've run on a really regular basis...mine was the 2007 or 2008 edition! :X That's no good!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Fall Wreath

My door decoration is pretty much out of season now...so it was time for another change.  In May I put up a painting of the sun and posted about it here.  Before that, it had firetrucks on it, since I was a newlywed Fireman's Wife. :) ((Which, by the way...seeing these pictures of my rearranged room reminds me that I've been in this apartment for over a year and have yet to post pictures of the place...I'll get around to it one day I suppose!! :) ))

 I saw a really cute wreath over at Mandy's Yellow Corner and thought it'd be the perfect way to turn my summer-themed door into something more appropriate for fall. :) Adam suggested we do something Auburn-y since it's football season, so I kept that in mind too. :)

Mine's a little different than Mandy's in a few ways...
  1. Mine's not a real wreath! I made the fabric flowers and glued them to an old pillowcase one of my friends gave me to use as scrap fabric (perfect size for our bulletin board on our door.)
  2. Mandy made felt flowers and mine were made from scrap fabric.  I'm working on dwindling down my fabric stash and I didn't have orange OR blue felt, which are necessary for an Auburn inspired wreath :).  I twisted the fabric while I was wrapping it around and gluing it down to give the flowers some volume.
Here's Mandy's super cute wreath! (in case you haven't paused from reading to go see hers yet).

And here's mine!
I'm not crazy about the push pins...but the stapler was not cooperating 100% tonight.  When I think about it, I will probably sew the ribbons in place and try to come up with a great way to get it to stay on the bulletin board without tacks...hmmmm......

Here's a nice little close-up of the flowers...now you can see the polka dots on the cream ones....and you can tell that the blue ones are blue jean! :)



And like Mandy said...this didn't cost anything except a few burnt fingers! (and about 2 and a half hours-ish due to cutting out fabric, gluing them, and pulling my fingers away quickly when I stuck them in hot glue again) (How many times can a girl really forget that the hot glue gun squirts out HOT glue???....at least 5.)

Now, if you didn't go look at her blog yet....go now. :)
Besides CUTE crafts, she has some REALLY good step by step tips on how to edit your blog!



Monday, September 13, 2010

Rosette Headband (Auburn Style)

I made this headband for one of my residents!
I took a break from working on a new door decoration...which I'll post later! :)

France Coffee Mug

I forgot that I ordered this coffee mug on Mom's Snapfish account.  It was kinda a hassle to tell you the truth.  She had a credit for a free collage mug and no matter what we did, it wanted to charge us for it.  She emailed them and told them about it (after they emailed her and said "You still have something in your cart!") and she let them know that between the two of us, we sat in front of the computer for several hours designing and then trying to order the mug with no luck (and we are far from computer illiterate!)  So they emailed her back and told her to order it and they would give her a refund...so we did. And here it is! :)


Sunday, September 12, 2010

I Love my Girls!

I feel like I say this all the time...but I love the girls in my building.  This is my fifth year on staff and this year, the community in my building is so much stronger than any other year and it's evident to everyone!  There is almost always someone in the lobby cooking, studying, or just watching YouTube videos waiting on someone to join them!  This is the first year that we've kept the kitchen stocked with a variety of cookware and dishes because everyone uses them!! We also keep dish soap and a dish rag in there because people are washing their dishes when they are done! This may not seem like that novel of an idea, but last year I found myself washing abandoned dishes in the kitchen way too frequently because otherwise, the sink would stay stopped up with food and the dishes would sit in the sink and start to smell up that end of the second floor.  This just isn't the case this year!  Megan told me at the beginning of the year that she prayed for our residents during the summer, before we met them and God has really answered both of our prayers and given us such a great group of residents.  Granted, every since moment may not be peachy, all the good is most definitely out-weighing the bad.    At the end of the year last year, I was sad to see a lot of the "frequent lobby dwellers" move on to apartments, other schools, or to move in with sorority sisters.  I know it's not going to be any different this year!

I said all that to say....Saturday night three of my girls went shopping and came back with supplies to make a rainbow dinosaur cake.  They came and knocked on my door to come watch (I was the photographer) and as other residents came through to warm up their dinner, they started hanging out as well!

Anywho...enough rambling...let's see how much fun they had. :) :)

I know this looks a little staged, everyone circling around the cake...but it wasn't!! :)


And....collages are my new favorite way to upload a bazillion pictures at once...with style! :)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I learned a new trick!!!!!

I've been wanting to learn some new photo editing skills...
like being able to select what's in color and what's in black & white.
Somehow I came across this site...


I don't remember how I found it...probably one of those things where you look at one site, then the next, then the next, then the next....and before you know it, you've learned how to play with the coloring in a photo!! :)

I practiced on this picture of me, my sisters, and my sister-in-law on my wedding day...

Yay!!!! :) The flowers POP!! :)

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

I made these tonight/early this morning while a group of us were hanging out in the lobby.  I had some bananas that weren't going to make it through the night....so we did a little cooking.  I found a recipe for banana oatmeal cookies and we tweaked it (I always tend to do that!)

3/4 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup veggie oil
1 egg
1 tsp nutmeg all spice (I was out of nutmeg and the all spice smelled intriguing)
2 small very ripe bananas
1 1/2 cup flour

Preheat oven to 350*F.
Combine ingredients in order listed.  (A hand mixer comes in handy for helping the bananas mush).
Drop by the tablespoonfuls onto an aluminum-foil covered cookie sheet (the best way to cut down on dishes).
Bake 10-15 minutes (11 worked perfect for me with two pans in the oven).


So Yummy....and approved by my residents!!! :)


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Friday, September 10, 2010

Five Question Friday

Flashback Friday Button
I'm joining up on Five Question Friday this week for the first time. 
I thought the questions were nifty, so why not answer them? :)

And I'm joining up with Flashback Friday...to go along with my answer to the last question! :)


1. Do you feel guilty spending money on yourself?
Not usually because I don't usually spend much on myself when I spend it! I'm quite the bargain shopper!! :)

2. How well do you know your neighbors?
Living in the Res Hall, I've got approximately 100 neighbors.  I know some more than others, just because some of my neighbors hang out in the lobby more than others.  They're all so much fun...I made homemade milkshakes for them last night! :)

3. What age are you looking forward to being?
Hmmm..... I don't really know!  I remember looking forward to turning 10, 13, and 15/16...after that, I wasn't too concerned with what age I was! I guess I'm still the same way! hahah! :) I am looking forward to being a mom one day, but I don't know what age that will be.  If I follow in my Mom's footsteps, that'll be 27.  I guess that's a good age to look forward too....my birthday is on the 27th too. :)

4. Do you get excited when the mail comes? Why?
Always!  I have to go to a mail room to get my mail, but every time I see the FedEx truck or the UPS truck drive around on campus, I hope there's something in there for me that I've ordered and forgotten about hahaha!  I also sign up for lots of freebies, so I never know what nifty samples will show up in my mail along with a new Netflix movie! :)

5. What is your earliest childhood memory?
A little fuzzy because some memories I don't know if I remember them because they're in my brain or because they're on the video camera haha.  Possibly my first day of Kindergarten when I sat down and started coloring (gave the girl in the picture a green or purple face...she must not have been feeling well....) and watched as the other kids came in, crying.  I'm sorry I didn't cry Mom!!!  I just like school too much! (obviously...I'm still here!)

First day of Kindergarten in a super cute outfit made by Mom :)

New Page Added to My Blog!

I made a new page for all the things I want to make one day! (Food & Craft Included....)
It's a tab and depending on how big your screen is, it could be under the "Home" tab or it could be at the end of the tabs. Check them out! So many creative things and yummy dishes. :) :)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Date Night

Well, left my cell phone and my camera at home (oh well! no pictures to prove we went on a date!!) But we did! We walked downtown tonight and went to Adam's favorite place downtown, Little Italy Pizzaria.

Cue stock photos of pesto pizza & pepperoni calzone.....



Yum.

Then we walked around campus for about another hour...we took the long way home. :) We walked by Chill, the newest frozen yogurt bar in town....but we were stuffed...so we walked on by. (Now that song is running through my head...if you don't know what I'm talking about, here's a YouTube video of it.  Not exactly a happy song...but it has a nice catchy tune to it!)

Anywho, it was nice to have weather nice enough to where we could just walk around town and not freeze or burn up! :)  

PS...those cookies Julia and I made...almost gone.  I wasn't kidding...they're good!!!

Jelly Drops!

My sister-in-law and I made these tonight while working on laundry... ((Side Note: It's always advantageous to actually put the detergent into the washer before leaving for thirty minutes.  Otherwise you're clothes will not have the freshly-washed smell as you move them to the dryer.))

So anywho...We feel healthy when we eat these because we tell ourselves that there is fruit in them!!
We saw this recipe from a book I got as a wedding gift: 500 Cookies.  We tweaked it a little, so I'm putting the tweaked version up here (but at least now you know where we got our inspiration!! :) )


  • 1/2 cup butter (we used tub butter because I'm out of stick butter and it worked wonderfully)
  • 2/3 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour (my Mom & I always use self-rising flour instead of using all-purpose+bakingpowder+salt...never had a problem with it. :)
  • your choice of jellies (we used Mrs. Hornady's homemade plum jelly, her homemade blueberry jelly, and some orange marmalade from World Market...and Mrs. Hornady's jelly was the best!)
Preheat the oven to 350*F.  Line your cookie sheets with aluminum foil.  Beat the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add the egg and beat.  Stir the flour into the butter mixture.  Roll the mimxture into balls and place them about 2 inches apart.  Use a handy-dandy wooden spoon handle (mine are plastic...but they look wooden haha) to make an indention into the top of each cookie.  ((Julia found it helpful to dip the end of the handle into a dish of flour before dipping it into the cookie so it doesn't stick.))  Fill the holes with jelly.  Bake 10-12 minutes until golden.  Add more jelly while the cookies are warm and move to a wire rack.  Store in an airtight container.  They'll keep for 4 to 5 days (but you'll eat them before then, I'm pretty sure!!)

An assortment of pictures from our adventure :) Click to view larger! :)



Finished product!! Yummmm....


Sister Sister Sunday





Creations by Kara



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