January 17, 2017

Tuesday Topics: Eight Characters

So Jenn did pick this topic. But occasionally I read, watch TV, and movies....haha so here it goes:
Harry Potter is a major character who influenced my childhood. I wrote about that here.

Jack Builder from The Pillars of the Earth was always my favorite in the book and then the mini series came out and I absolutely loved Eddie Redmayne. Now I will tell you I have not seen Fantastic Beasts because I just think of JACK. By the way, if you have not read The Pillars of the Earth, it is an amazing book and you should! It is a historical fiction in 12th century England.

Clark Griswold (Christmas Vacation) is just the funniest character ever. He has to make this list!

Sarah Manning, Cosima Niehaus, Alison Hendrix, Beth Childs, Helena, Rachel Duncan, and more are all played by the same actress in the show Orphan Black. It is so amazing!

Franc from Father of the Bride gave my sister her nickname (bubba-la) I love him!

Merry from Lord of The Rings likes second breakfast, and so do I!

Anna from Downton Abbey was so decent. You felt like you knew her. She was beautiful, smart, and witty. She didn't have a perfect life, but she lived her life and loved it.

Nancy Drew took me on so many adventures and truly taught me how to read. She deserves a nod here.

Who are your faves?
Link up below!

January 16, 2017

Bringing Someone A Meal

Bringing someone a meal is always a good thing when anyone is going through a busy time in their life. Thankfully my meals lately have been for a lot of girls in my life who are having babies. But these meals can also be for people when they are hurt, sick, when a death has happened, relocated, or just cause! Casseroles are the perfect comfort food and because they can feed a hungry crowd, they are the perfect food gift. So no matter who you are gifting a meal to, every gift casserole (and really, any meal you bring to someone) needs three things that make the gift of food even better:
Disposable Pan
Do your best to give a gift casserole in a dish that doesn't need to be returned to you. For most of us that will mean picking up a few aluminum baking pans from the grocery store, but if waste is a concern, look to your local thrift store for baking dishes that you can gift. Just be sure to tell the recipient that the casserole dish doesn't need to be returned.

List of Ingredients
I like to put the list of ingredients in case someone has certain allergies or food restrictions. The list of ingredients does not need to include amounts, but try to make it as complete as possible.

Cooking Instructions
Don't assume that your gift casserole recipient knows how to reheat a lasagna. Tape the cooking or reheating instructions right on the casserole. Bonus points if you also include freezing and thawing instructions in case they have many casseroles.

What else do you think that all gifted meals need?

January 13, 2017

Recipe Failures

My blog was started when I got married. I am the normal every girl learning how to adult and live a great everyday life. I am self taught in many regards, especially in the kitchen. Every person who gets in the kitchen has failures. Nobody ever shows that. I have since experimented more in the kitchen with my blog and trust me I have had some failures.

I am not a chef, just a self taught home chef. Very different. Being an every girl and creating recipes results in a lot of trial and error.

Now there are more failures than what is listed. Some of my failures don't have pictures, they get thrown away before I can even whip out my cell phone. Probably for good reason though. I don't take the best pictures anyway and most of these not only tasted bad, but looked AWFUL!

This post is not meant to be a sob story. It shows me how much experimentation I have done and how many more there is to come!

So that’s the short version. If you want more, read on! Otherwise, happy cooking!

I absolutely loved coming up with an easy grill recipe for my husband to make on nights when I am working. I thought it would taste just as great and be colorful. Well...nope. Pineapple Foil Chicken...didn't work!

There was also this time where I tried a tomato cream sauce with chicken. No matter what I did, I could not get the kind of sauce I wanted. But it sounds good right?

Oh and bread without flour? Pretty hard too. It did not taste like bread. Therefore, it is not bread.

So in a world of perfectness, here is some imperfect to remind you that trial and error is normal.

January 10, 2017

Nine Healthy Recipes

Right now I think a lot of us are feeling the pressure of wanting to start the year off right and healthy or continue our healthy ways. In winter with the holiday season, it can be hard to find meals that fit into both categories of being delicious and comforting.

So link up today with Jenn and I for Tuesday Topics! We can all hopefully find some new healthy recipes to try! You can click the links to these recipes and find all of the instructions!

What says healthy more than starting your day with a burst of smoothie goodness!

This is one of the easiest recipes to make. Perfect for when you need a quick meal or side dish!

This salad is cool, light, and refreshing which is perfect after you have had nothing but heavy foods!

I make this for lunches during the week and hopefully it lasts that long because I always find myself snacking on it!

As long as you don't eat too many in one sitting (as I often do), these are so SO SO good and healthy!

Using zucchini as your base, this is amazingly cheesy and you won't miss the the carb noodle.

Another zucchini recipe, but you can sub zucchini for another veggie too! I like peas in this recipe too!

This is a recipe you need in your winter food arsenal! So good!

First two zucchini recipes and now two cauliflower recipes. This one I got from a great cookbook and it is very yummy!

Any recipe that is easy prep, healthy, and something I can hand my husband to go grill is a winner in my book!

Link up some of your favorite healthy recipes below!

January 7, 2017

2016 Was Great!

I am always a little late in putting this together, but I enjoy it! I took a break from blogging to be present with friends and family this holiday season, and it was great! In 2016 Kevin and I celebrated four years together, got work promotions, and spent great time with family and friends. We traveled doing everything from discovering the breathtaking Cinque Terre in Italy to lounging in Mexico, and exploring Maui.

I am so thankful every day for the adventures I have had and the memories made this year while exploring new places and experiencing new things. It is a big old world out there and as much as I love the comforts of home, there is so much I want to see, explore, and experience and I feel so grateful that it's something I have  been able to prioritize with time and finances this year. 

Here is a little recap of the incredible year. I am so grateful for the life I lead and cannot wait to see what 2017 has in store!

The big one this month was that I surprised Kevin with a graduation party. He graduated with his masters in Electrical Engineering! We also took a visit to Denver and enjoyed visiting Red Rocks. I also did some hiking and exploring. So lucky to be able to take advantage of amazing Arizona weather!
I hosted my first annual Valentine's Day pizza party (because really what says love more than couples and pizza?!) and we also decided to take a trip to Italy for October! I also was able to start skiing 9 months after my ACL surgery. Oh and a trip to ski Lake Tahoe where I had never been...it was beautiful!

Another highlight was the Denver Broncos winning the Super Bowl. Too bad they will not be able to do the same this year!

Took our annual trip to Vail Colorado for some good skiing and celebrated by one year anniversary on my new ACL!

Spring cleaning and random doings happened this month. Made a hometown weekend run. My favorite part of my hometown (besides the people) is White Sands National Monument! We also finally tiled our laundry room!

Celebrated Nurse's Week, celebrated four years married, and got creative with my sisters for my mom's mother's day gift!
Shared some of the amazing qualities my husband and father share and celebrated my 27th birthday.

We enjoyed a relaxing weekend away in Cancun Mexico and made lots of jam with my mom. My sister, cousin, and bff came to visit oh and enjoyed hiking and fourth of July!

I won my March Madness bracket against Kevin and finally got my date night promised to be as my winnings. We had a visit from our cousins. Oh and explored more of Tucson this year starting with the San Xavier Mission.

I roasted some green chile which will hopefully be enough to last me till next season! We also took a trip to Oregon and hiked, wine tasted, and beached!
Our highlight was traveling all over Italy. I shared my thoughts for my first flight to Europe. Our trip was amazing and has us wanting to plan a big trip next year. I have found that when I embrace adventure, big or small, I am truly happy! I will be sure to share some photos and memories in the coming year!

I also jumped into a new position at work. I am grateful to work with some great people and serve the community the way that I do. I always want to give my job 110%.

Then of course wine and friend time is always something I try and make time for!

I hosted my third annual Friendsgiving. It is always a good time! Also celebrated two milestone birthdays for two of my favorite people!

We had a couple of holiday date nights, went to Maui (pictures to come), and spent the holidays with family. A perfect end to the year! Oh and I shared some tips for travelling during the holiday season!

I also wanted to say that I hope you guys had a wonderful year as well and THANK YOU so much for sticking with me this year following my blog, whether it has been since the beginning or two days ago. You guys rock and I wish you all the best for 2017. May all your dreams come true!

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