Monday, December 28, 2009 a nutshell

I can't believe that Christmas is done and December is already almost over! Time really does fly but we've been really busy. Last week, my parents flew in and stayed for 5 days to celebrate Christmas with us and they left yesterday, just as David's brother and Dad (who reminded me that I need to update the 'ol blog) got into town. Whew!

So here's December, in a nutshell :)

Sarah, Paul and Mary came to visit right after Thanksgiving (which is close enough to December, right?) and we had a blast playing on the beach, and eating a lot. Unfortunately, we had a cold snap and they didn't get to do very much beaching but we had a lot of fun catching up with them, chasing Mary around and eating a lot. Somehow I didn't take any pictures all weekend but Sarah has a pretty hot picture of us in our "hammer pants" around somewhere...

For David's Christ Fellowship "Christmas Party," we went gleaning at a farm in Belle Glade. It was intense. Basically, we picked all the corn that the machine missed, and it went to food banks. We ended up eating a lot of corn and bringing a whole lot back home with us.

On my birthday, David took me out to dinner at Seasons 52, which I love. I love that I can eat a lot but not leave feeling totally disgusting and that it is decently priced for the quality of food. But most of all, I love that the Seasons 52 in West Palm Beach is on the Intercoastal, so we got to sit by the water and watch the boats. It was awesome.

But the real celebrating happened that Saturday. Our friend John, who David works with, gave us tickets to go to Lion Country Safari. If you think this is a totally lame way for 2 adults to spend a Saturday, you're wrong. It was great. We saw lions (duh), elephants, alligators, monkeys, pythons and all kinds of great stuff. We got to feed giraffes and a goat even tried to eat David's pants! We drove through the safari part twice (because it was that cool. And because going 8mph is great for your gas tank...) and then got out and walked around the zoo-ish part. I don't know if I would pay to go back (okay, I do know and I wouldn't) but for free, it was a pretty great day. And to cap off the day, I got the interior of my car detailed. Happy birthday to me!

It was really windy. My hair is not that crazy in real life, promise.

The time between Christmas and my birthday was mostly spent doing a lot of shopping and getting ready for our families to get here. My parents came last Tuesday and we had a lot of fun playing tourist with them around Jupiter and West Palm Beach. We went to CityPlace a few times and took them to the Breakers, where we looked at all of the beautiful decorations and had snacks/drinks at a bar made out of an aquarium. We even spent Christmas day at the beach and my family was brave enough to get in both the ocean and the pool. I think David and I are becoming true Floridians because it was way too cold for us. Dad, Adam, David and I wrapped up the week by kayaking on the Loxahatchee River. With a strong current. My arms are still sore but it was a lot of fun. I forgot to take my camera so pictures to come once I steal them from someone else.

Here's a picture of my favorite present that we gave to my family - their name in pictures from the Marina. Theirs is framed and in sepia instead of black & white but this is the general idea:

And now...we're just waiting for Christmas part 2 with the Aldridge/D'Ambola clan!

Hope you had a great, relaxing December too!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Free Music!

"Freebies" and "Christmas" are definitely on the top 10 list of "Things I Love" and they have come together. You can't even imagine how excited I was to find this:

Free Christmas music! Amazing. And my parents sent me a fabulous little iPod nano in the mail yesterday for my birthday (my old one just celebrated its 6th birthday and has officially hit the bucket) so I'm thrilled that tomorrow I'll be able to run in 85 degree weather while singing Christmas music (okay, no. I'm in terrible shape, I definitely can't run and sing but you get the idea). Joy to the world, Christmas is almost here!

Oh, and apparently Amazon always has free music to download. The artists are a little random but if you're looking for a new favorite, check out everything you can download! The first few pages are Christmas songs right now but it starts to get crazy after that.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Roll Tide Roll!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Best. Weather. Ever.

It's 9:00 on December 2nd. And it feels like 83 degrees. I love it!!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Advent Conspiracy

Ironically, I sat down to write this, turned on the TV and saw an ad for Sears that said, "More value. More Christmas." Seriously? Since when did Christmas have anything to do with value? It's not called "valuemas."

Anyways, rant over. Today is the first day of Advent so in honor of it, I thought I'd share something that David and I have been talking about lately - Advent Conspiracy. If you've never heard of it, there's a promo video that wraps it up pretty well:

It's really sad what Christmas has become but I think this is a cool answer to it. And clearly, none of us are going to be able to give the world clean water, but there is a lot we can do to help other people. I can't speak for everyone but I know that I don't need any more presents - especially in bulk. If you want to give me a present, wait until the summer, when I'm always in need of swimsuits/sandals and am 6 months away from my birthday and Christmas :)

If this video doesn't convince you enough, check out Shaun Grove's blog about "Going Giftless." He's really funny and a very talented writer who has some good points about the way we celebrate Christmas.

And, if you're ready to give up your Christmas gifts this year and give more, but don't know where to start, here's a plan: go explore the India Gospel League's Gift Catalog. Instead of getting another sweater, you can give a family a goat. Or teach an adult to read. Or feed a child.

T-26 Days. Merry Christmas!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! We have so much to be thankful for this year but since we'll be celebrating alone in Florida (...until Sarah, Paul and Mary get here tomorrow!) there won't be any going-around-the-table-to-say-what-you're-thankful-for. I need to share with someone, so here's just a few of the things I am super thankful for this year.

A - Athens - home sweet home!
B - Blogger so I can stalk all of my far-away friends and pretend that they are close.
C - Christ Fellowship for being our supportive south Florida church and for letting David work there everyday.
D - the Dawgs, even when they're having an off-year :)
E - Ephesians 2:4-5.
F - Family. Between the LaHaie/Jacksons and Aldridge/D'Ambolas, we couldn't ask for better people to be related to.
G - Generosity. We have been given so much!
H - our Health.
I - the ability to be Inside with a roof over my head and carpet for my feet.
J - a Job that I love and people that I love to work with.
K - special K, my very favorite cereal!
L - Long-distance friends and family who make home seem a little closer.
M - Marriage. Hands down the best thing ever and I am so thankful to get to spend every day with my best friend.
N - New friends in Florida who have made the transition easier...and fun!
O - the Ocean, which makes for a beautiful backyard!
P - Plenty of food to keep us going every day.
Q - Quiet time to think.
R - Reading a good book. Especially at the pool.
S - the ability to Sleep soundly at night without worry or fear. In an awesome bed.
T - Thomas, our sweet sponsored child from Uganda.
U - Unlimited clean water to drink, clean and bathe in.
V - Volunteering to help people who couldn't do it on their own.
W - Worship and the ability to do it freely without persecution.
X - eXperiences. I've had the opportunity to do and see a lot in my 23 years.
Y - Yesterday and the things I've learned from my past.
Z - Zero-calorie sweeteners, especially Splenda.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


We are suckers for free samples. If you are too, head over to Kashi for a free sample of a trail mix bar (plus some good coupons when you get it in the mail!).

The Southern Savers blog has a lot of freebie samples that they have rounded up today (and last week)too!

Go get yourself some free stuff!


Okay, so I have a new favorite product. And I need to tell you about how amazing it is.

I looooovee Peanut Butter but anyone watching what they eat knows that you have to use it sparingly. 2 tablespoons of most peanut butter will cost you about 180 calories and 17 grams of fat and while most of it is good fat and it's full of healthy amino acids and a little protein, the calories and fat add up fast. Plus, who can stop themselves at just 2 tablespoons of peanut butter? It's amazing on everything.

Enter my new favorite thing ever - PB2. It's powedered peanut butter. Yes, powdered. But it's not full of strange chemicals or preservatives, just peanuts, salt and sugar. And it's made in Tifton! How could I not support a company from my home state?! And the best part? 2 tablespoons of PB2 has 50 calories and 2 grams of fat!
I know what you're thinking - diet foods are gross. And this is generally true, but PB2 is delish! You just add a tablespoon of water, mix it up and use it just like your old favorite type of peanut butter. Or you could mix it directly with strawberry jelly. Or with wait! They make chocolate PB2 too!

So it's a little more expensive than the Jif you grab from the store (about $5 for a jar) and mixing it with water is a little less convienant than tradiational PB, it's totally worth it to save 130 calories. Why waste them on peanut butter when you could be eating ice cream?!

Check out Bell Plantation's website for more information about PB2 and to order some samples or find out where you can get it locally.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Weekend

This weekend was definitely eventful for us. We spent Friday morning rounding up gifts for the kids that we are sponsoring for Operation Christmas Child and then headed down to Boca for some fun. We spent less than $30 to fill up boxes for at least 2 kids, which was pretty eye-opening, especially if you've seen my Christmas list this year! When did Christmas turn into such a consumer holiday?

Anyways, speaking Christmas (and those who don't celebrate it), Boca was fabulous, as always. We went to eat dinner at Maggianos but took advantage of the beautiful weather and walked around a pretty sweet park before stuffing ourselves silly. We discovered mutual love of gnocci, which is great because we have a LOT of it leftover in the fridge!

Saturday was interesting, mostly because it was the end of my job at the spa. Things just weren't working out, but I am not disappointed in the least. Financially, things will be a little tight but otherwise this is fabulous news, as it was just not a good situation at all. We didn't have time to mope around though, because the Stallings and the Litters came over to watch football and hang out. I tested out a new recipe on them, which passed with flying colors.

1 can pumpkin
1 box spice mix

Mix well, bake following directions on cake box (either in a glass pan like brownies or in muffin tins). Optional: Heat cream cheese icing and drizzle over the top.

These little guys are really good, really moist and have a lot more spice flavor than pumpkin.

Anyways, we had some church commitments on Sunday and the weather was gorgeous so we walked around CityPlace and soaked it all up. Today was my first day as a stay at home wife, but it was great and I don't know if I ever want to go back to work. It feels great to be so productive - I have done a ton of laundry, dishes and cleaning that we've neglected. I don't know how people with families and activities keep up with everything!

I'm already planning all of the productive things to do tomorrow, I'm free!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Make New Friends but Keep the Old...

I really hate it when people don't update their blogs, but I am guilty. I just haven't felt like it and we've been busy. Lots of fun stuff has happened, though.

My parents came to visit and we ate a lot of amazing seafood. It's crazy that we haven't seen them from the wedding! We had a great time showing them around the new 'hood and spending lots of time at the pool and beach. We also discovered 2 delicious new restaurants - Spoto's Oyster Bar in Palm Beach Gardens and Sailfish Marina (which makes the most amazing crab nachos EVER!).

There have been a lot of October birthdays too, so Happy Birthday to Meredith and Emily...and anyone else I forgot! Ya know that song that says to "make new friends but keep the old" Between these two I've done just that and I am fortunate to know both of them!

Meredith and I met in high school when I accidentally stole her scarf...and we've been best buds ever since! We lived together during our freshman year at UGA and were in each others' weddings when we became "grown ups." She taught me how to be an incredible cheerleader (...), I locked her out of our dorm room naked (okay, maybe a few times), and we have had our fair share of adventures. I miss her and wish we lived closer! Happy birthday, Merediddy!

Emily and I actually "met" online while we planned our Georgia weddings but somehow we both ended up in the little town of Jupiter, Florida. We have really enjoyed getting to know her and her husband - it's nice to have an Atlanta connection way down here and I'm excited about getting our supper club started!

We need to take some pictures :)

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Okay so I know that I am behind in posting. I'm working on that but I discovered something tonight that I just had to share with all the billions of people who read this. is the funniest thing I have ever seen. I am literally crying from laughing so hard.

If you're not familiar with you should be because there is some pretty fabulous homemade stuff. There's also a lot of junk and the people at regretsy have found it all. The first few pages of the website are funny but it's the next 25 (or more, probably, but that's as far as I've made it tonight) that are insanely hilarious. Who makes this junk?!

Go look at it so we can make fun of people who knit x-rated water bottle holders. I think I'm done with my Christmas shopping :)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

When I meet Thomas in real life, this is the first thing I will teach him!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Proud Parents

The idea of "generosity" has really been on our hearts lately. It seems like every message we listen to or book we read is about giving and we have tried to make a conscious effort to be generous with the ways we spend our time and money.

It is also something close to us personally because our day-to-day lives are dependent on the generosity of other people - there is no way we'd ever be able to afford our beach condo without the generosity of David's grandparents and our families continue to support us by paying for our insurance, cell phones and even gas. We are extremely fortunate to have been given so much and it would be crazy for us not to give back.

Although we don't "make" a lot of money by America's standards, we are still in the top 11% of the world's most wealthy people (find out where you stand here). 11%! There are so many opportunities for us to give back, so last night we decided to "adopt" a child.

Adopting a child is something David and I have always been interested in, but obviously actually bringing home a kid is something we can't do right now. So we found one online instead! Compassion International is Christian-based adoption agency that helps more than 1 million children in 25 countries, and our sweet new "son" is 7 year old Thomas, from Uganda.

Just saving $1 from every hour your work in 1 week is enough to sponsor a child for a month. It is a great reminder that if you think you can't afford to make a huge difference in the life of a child, you're wrong.

Learning about Thomas has also put a lot in perspective - his mom is a farmer and in his free time, he plays with a HOOP. That's it, just a hoop. And his job is to carry water when he's not in school. The adults make an average of $5/day and they live in houses with cement floors and tin roofs.

We are so excited about serving and supporting Thomas, getting to know him and maybe even meeting him one day! If you are interested in "adopting" one of Thomas' friends or the thousands of other children that need help all over the world, check out Compassion International. Or if you're not ready to commit to a child of your own, consider making a contribution to serve poverty-stricken families in a number of different ways.

To whom much is given, much is required. Luke 12:48

Isn't he CUTE?!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Food & Wine

The last 2 weeks have been crazy busy. Whatever happened to our days of just laying around and enjoying the beach?!

Our friends, the Ganleys, came down last weekend to visit us at the beach. We had a blast catching up with Joe and Christina and spending time at the beach and pool with Jackson and Anna.

And then this weekend, we went up to Orlando and stayed with them while we visited our friends Arianne and Diana and Brandon. What we thought was going to be a nice, relaxing weekend turned out to be better crazy but it was definitely fun!

Friday night we hung out with Arianne at Downtown Disney, Saturday we got up early for breakfast at Boma and then spent the rest of the day at Epcot for the Food & Wine Festival. To say it was incredibly hot and crowded is a huge understatement but we got to try lots of new food (like escargot!), ride some of our favorite rides and see Sister Hazel live! And then Saturday night we met up with Diana and Brandon at the Magic Kingdom. I guess everyone had the same idea as us because it was packed too, so we rode a few rides and called it a night.There are times that I miss Orlando but this weekend helped me remember a lot of what I don't miss too. Like crowds. And insane traffic. And tourists. It's good to be home!

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Well, the Georgia/LSU game was terrible but the sunset here tonight was amazing and too beautiful not to take pictures of. I think I missed the last few seconds of game, but obviously nothing important (like Georgia getting a touchdown) happened.

Our backyard is so beautiful and we are so thankful to be living here!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Falling for Fall

Happy Fall! It seems like the rest of the country is finally getting some good fall weather and, while it's still hot & humid here, I am excited for the idea of sweaters, apples and crisp fall air.

The first day of fall was overshadowed here by our Kashi craziness, but in real life we celebrated by making a delicious hearty fall dinner adapted by a recipe in Runner's World. Honestly, it was a lot of work and I don't know if we've ever made anything this "from scratch" before (even though we used canned beans). We were both a little skeptical and had a backup plan in case dinner was a total flop but it turns out this stuff is AMAZING! It's full of fiber from the beans and rice and has a lot of flavor from the sausage, peppers and onions. It is the perfect fall recipe and you'll have lots of leftovers!

5 c. chicken stock
2 c. brown rice
1 green pepper, chopped
1 red peppper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp. olive oil
12 oz. turkey sausage, cut into coins
1 15 oz. can white kidney beans
1 15 oz. can red kidney beans
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 tsp. thyme
1 bay leaf
Hot sauce, to taste

In a pot, bring stock and rice to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until liquid is absored (about 40 min.). Saute peppers, onions and garlic in oil until softened. Add sausage and saute until brown. Add beans, 1 cup of bean liquid, diced tomatoes with juice, thyme and bay leaf. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with hot sauce to taste. Add rice to bean mixture and stir to combine. Remove bay leaf and serve immediately.

Bon Appetit!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Free Ice Cream!

If you're not following the Southern Savers Blog, you should. Why? Because it has lots of fun information that you need to know. Like the fact that Carvel and Coldstone are giving away FREE ice cream today!

Carvel is giving away Oreo Lil Rounders from 3-7 for their annual Customer Appreciation Day and...

Coldstone is giving away cups of Jack's Creation (from 5-8), to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation. I love both Make-A-Wish and Coldstone so I'll be there and you should be too!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Kashi Crazy

We've only been "couponing" for a few weeks now, but I think today was the most monumental day we're going to have for a long time...Let me explain...

About a month ago, David signed up to work at Kashi Day at Publix through an independent contractor. Basically he just handed out coupons and samples and got paid a lot of money. The money part was great, obviously (although the check came in the mail today) but he also came home with dozens of boxes of cereal, crackers, cookies and other snacks as well as hundreds of recyclable grocery bags (which we now use for everything) and thousands (literally) of coupons. We use the coupons occasionally when Kashi stuff goes on sale or if we have a craving for "7 whole grains on a mission" but today was the big kahuna.

All Kashi frozen food is 50% off at Publix! And our coupons are for $1 off. So today, we made 2 trips to Publix simply to stock up on frozen pizzas, waffles and lunches and after majorly clearing out the freezer, we...

spent less than $15 (for 9 frozen meals, 2 boxes of waffles and 3 decent-sized pizzas) and saved over $40!

Between the sale and our coupons, each frozen meal was less than $1, waffles were like $0.30 and the pizzas were less than $2! I know this isn't a big deal to everyone, but we are on a super strict budget and it is so fun to see the final price change right in front of your eyes. We still probably have over a thousand of our little coupons left so we'll be eating Kashi for a very, very long time.

If you need to stock up on your Kashi stash, let me know and we'll send some coupons your way!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Rain, Rain Go Away

It's Saturday, but we're not watching football. We are spending the weekend church-hopping between Christ Fellowship's campuses. This morning, we had a meeting about leading a college small group at the Gardens Campus. But now we are stuck in what I imagine a monsoon would be. We are headed to Royal Palm tonight, if we ever feel like braving the run to the parking lot. There is some major rain going on outside.

Luckily, we knew there would be a lot of downtime today, so we brought laptops, books and snacks. But really, really?!

...come again another day!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

It's already Thursday?!

I can't believe that today is already Thursday. The week sure does fly by fast when Monday is a holiday. I vote for 4 day weeks every week!

Even though I don't actually work a normal "workweek," I'm glad Monday was a holiday for everyone else - we had a really good weekend! My sweet husband took us on a fun surprise morning date to eat bagels on the beach on Saturday and spent the rest of the day watching football at our condo with friends. Georgia lost and we are 600 miles away from Athens, but we wore our red and black proudly (and I unsuccessfully tried to make G-shaped brownies, but that's another story...)!

After resting up on Sunday, we headed to the First Annual Smith/Stallings Labor Day Olympics on Monday for a day of pool relays. These people are serious about their Olympic pool sports and even though Stephanie and I came in last, we had a lot of fun and came away with only minor injuries. I wish I had taken more pictures but I thought I forgot my camera - of course, it was in my bag the whole time.
The rest of the week has been good too. David just started his internship and is loving it so far. Yay! And is having a shoe sale - they are buy one, get one half off so I stocked up today and got 3 pairs of sandals and a pair of cute grey flats (for those blistering south Florida winters) for $50 with free shipping.

Thanks Labor Day for an awesome weekend!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Football is here!

I've been a bad blogger, but really not much has been going on. I'm definitely not complaining though - it is great to have time to spend at the pool, the beach or doing absolutely nothing (literally. We are stretched out on the couch watching "Rambo." What a Friday night!).

I do have a few fun things worthy of note though...

The first is the kickoff of Georgia football this weekend! No one else here really seems to care about college football, but I wore red & black to work today to start cheering on the dawgs a day early! I'm already sick of Lou Holtz's lisp but I digress...

In honor of the kickoff of college football, check out BooMama's DipTacular weekend. This is one of the best ideas I have ever seen. I LOVE DIPS! ...and if you do too, check it out. Or post your own and link to her DipTacular Post. Yum!
In other exciting news...last week was our 4 month anniversary. Can you believe we have been married for 1/3 of a year already?! I know that it's not a very long time in the long run, but it feels like our wedding was just yesterday. To celebrate, David surprised me with pretty flowers and a giant piece of Chris' Outrageous Chocolate Cake from the Cheesecake Factory. He's fabulous!He is also fabulous because this week, he committed to a year long internship at Christ Fellowship Church here in Palm Beach. Yes, that means we're living here for at least the next year, so there is lots of time to come visit. Seriously though, I'm really proud of him and I think he will really enjoy his time there working with life groups. I'm also excited about getting involved with him!

To celebrate (kind of), we went to $1 Taco Night at Havana Hideout in Palm Beach with our friends the Stallings and the Litters. It POURED (and of course all the seating is outside, uncovered) - so we were all soaked (hence the lack of pictures) but it was fun, and definitely something I think we'll remember for awhile. We're just happy to finally have made some fun friends here!

And...even though this post sounds like all we do is eat, we have really enjoyed eating healthier lately and playing with coupons. How lame is that?! We've actually both lost about 4 lbs. in the past couple weeks and yesterday we dominated at Target with all our coupons and savings. We spent $25, saved $17 and got a free $5 gift card. YEAH! We've had pretty equally good trips to Publix lately too, basically just planning our menu for the week around whatever is on sale/what we have coupons for. We've also been using The Grocery Game (click for a free trial!) which rounds up all the sales and coupons going on at stores so you can save the most. As lame as it is, we have had a lot of fun trying to figure out the best deals and we've saved a lot of money.

Oh and here are some obligatory pictures of our beautiful, scenic "backyard." Be jealous!

Happy football weekend! Go Dawgs!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Summer's Worth of Food

We have been cooking up a storm this summer (maybe literally, Hurricane Bill is heading our way!) and have been pretty good about taking pictures but I am terrible about posting them. The good thing about waiting so long, though, is that I can post it all at once. Take a trip through our summer in Mema's kitchen :)

The first thing we had to do was clear out all of Mema's expired food. This is only a small part of what we threw out and some of it was a few years past the expiration date. To be fair, they don't cook much but we had to make room for food that wouldn't kill us.

Our first big attempt was at Alton Brown's French Toast. We were watching "Good Eats" one night when he made the most incredible looking (and complicated) French Toast I'd ever seen. We're suckers for trying new things (and taking trips to Publix daily) so we gave it a whirl. We documented the entirety of making these bad boys but the final product is the most beautiful. This bad boy was deeeee-licious!
We have also been following a friends' cooking blog - Vintage Victuals. This girl has some of the best recipes ever and is also a fabulous photographer. Just looking at her food pictures makes me drool! She posted a recipe for Emergency Chocolate Cake that we just had to try - it was everything I was dreaming of, and then some. Quick, easy, chocolaty, delicious. We had to buy a lot of the ingredients (see: first picture) but any normal kitchen would already have them, which makes it even better!

After that chocolate cake desire was fed, we moved on to chocolate cupcakes. Cake mix is always BOGO at Publix so I have a ton that we needed to start eating. And eating we did. David cooked up 2 dozen cupcakes that we polished off in just a few days. And I once caught him eating 4 in a row!
Eventually we decided to go on a slightly healthier kick. One of the things I miss most about being in Athens is my Dad's grilling - he makes the BEST hamburgers but he can grill just about everything, and I love grilled squash. When I saw it at the store, I bought way more than I should have and we just tossed it with a little olive oil, salt and pepper and grilled it on George Foreman. It is AMAZING!
Our success with the yellow squash got me curious about other when I saw a Chayote at the store, I got excited. This is the UGLIEST fruit/vegetable thing I have ever seen. So I bought it. It kind of looks like a wrinkly Pear from the side but the bottom has big disgusting lips that resemble an old person without their false teeth in.

We had no idea what to do with it but after a little research, I learned that it is firmer than a squash (with a consistancy similar to an apple), pretty bland and takes on the flavor of anything it's with. We decided to go big on flavor and sliced it up and then covered the pieces in butter, minced garlic, italian seasoning and mozarella cheese. Here's the result:

I have no idea if that's what you're supposed to do with it, but I believe that EVERYTHING tastes good when it's covered in butter, garlic and cheese and this was no exception. I don't know if it is something I'd eat on a regular basis but it was quite delicious and I like to pretend that it's healthy since there is a fruit/vegetable in there somewhere.

And most recently, David attempted the Deen Brothers' Red Potato and Green Bean Sautee. Don't look at that website though - their picture puts ours to shame. Anyways, it was delicious - I'm lucky to live with such a good chef! I love green vegetables and those little red potatos are fabulous. We tried them roasted with carrots and pearl onions too. YUM!

Paula Deen's making macaroni and cheese and peach cobber on TV, the sun is setting over the ocean and it's dinnertime. This is the life!

Monday, August 17, 2009


Since finishing up at Disney and moving to the beach, our summer has been pretty lazy. We spend a lot of time playing tennis, playing wii, and of course going to the pool and the beach. Neither the pool nor the beach are very fabulous without a good book so I have been cranking through them - plus we have a library in our building and Goodwill sells them for $1.50. Sweet!

Lately I've read "Love in the Time of Cholera," "Memoirs of a Geisha," "The Shack," various Jodi Picoult books, a little David Sedaris, part of "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan and a weird book about conjoined twins. I really love reading but...

the other day we took a trip to Wal Mart and I was rooting through the $5 movie bin when I found "Memoirs of a Geisha!" Hooray! Of course, the movie is never as good as the book, and even at over 2 hours this movie managed to leave out large chunks of the novel, but it was pretty decent.

So last night we decided to try the movie thing again. We have a bunch of dvds that neither of us have ever seen so we decided to watch "Signs." Now I understand why neither of us have ever seen it.

Review: WORST MOVIE EVER. Actually the only movie that may be worse is "Cabin Fever." But they're both pretty awful. The terribly predictable plot and awful acting reminded me of "Facing the Giants" but at least that has a nice, happy message (and a cameo by Mark Richt) - "Signs" has no excuse. Mel Gibson, what were you thinking?!

On a brighter note, we rented "Taken" from the $1 rental thing at Publix the other night and gave it a thumbs up.

Have you seen a good movie lately (that we can rent, because I'm not paying $10 to go to the theatre)? I can't gamble on movies anymore!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Tweet Tweet!

So I've decided to start pretending to be techy and join twitter. I really have no idea what you do with it, but if you want to know all of the dumb things I do all day, who am I to stop you?

Seriously though, I am working on helping out Tate Investments with their marketing and social media, so if I expect them, or anyone else, to think that I am capable of getting them into cyberspace, I've got to jump in myself. Be my friend or follow me or stalk me or do whatever you do with Twitter!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Hello Again!

It has been a long time since I've updated this bad boy, but there has been a lot going on. Here are some of the high points (kind of in chronological order):

1. We went to lunch at Havana Hideout. We are "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" junkies and when it was featured on the show and we realized it was in our 'hood, we just had to try it. They make fabulous Cuban food and even though we had a hard time handling some of heat (apparently Cubans are into spice. We're not.), our food was deeeelicious!

2. David's mom and brother, Brent, came to visit us! We had a really fun week of eating out (A LOT - we love eating. Can you tell?!), spending time at the pool/beach and playing uno. I learned that I am pretty good at the first 2 of those, but not so hot at the latter. Oh well.

3. I got a job! David and I have both been looking for part-time jobs so we can still enjoy our little indefinite beach vacation and I found a fabulous job as a receptionist at the local Aveda salon. It smells delicious and is super relaxing, which is a long-shot from my time at Disney. I started yesterday so today was my 2nd day - so far, so good! I'm also still helping out with marketing for Tate Investments so I'm feeling busy again and I like it.

4. My parents decided to come visit for Fall Break in October. I'm pretty pumped about seeing them again without the craziness of wedding planning!

5. David started blogging again! His new addresss is: so check it out.

We love living on the beach. The end.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Shark Week

Note to self: When living at the beach, Shark Week on the Discovery Channel may not be the best entertainment. Bring on the pool!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Cupcake Schmupcake

There is a cupcake place here in Jupiter that David and I have been eyeing since our arrival. I mean, I love a good cupcake and a whole shop devoted to them is my dream come true. We have been drooling over their website but since we're on a "no-eating-out" plan, we have been waiting. And waiting.

So yesterday, after a brutal morning of job hunting we decided that we deserved cupcakes and headed over to DD's Cupcake Shoppe. Though the website features hundreds of flavors, the teeny little cupcake store only had a few available. We tried 2 of our all-time favorite flavors (Red Velvet and German Chocolate) and some Mandarin orange flavor that isn't on the website.

After much anticipation in the car ride home, the moment came and we chowed down.

The verdict? Gross. These cupcakes were all dry and brittle. The cream cheese icing on the Red Velvet was its saving grace, but the German Chocolate had no hope whatsoever. And orange was decent (because it was filled with a curd, which gave it a little moisture, I guess) but it wasn't anywhere close to the creamsicle deliciousness I was hoping for.

At $3 per cupcake, I give DD's Cupcake Shoppe a big fat F. Really, how is it even possible to make a bad cupcake?! I'm so sad :(
Luckily, David is not only a fabulous cook but also a champion dessert maker and has been cranking out delicious ice cream creations lately. Who needs DD and her crappy cupcakes?! Not me!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Mmm Mmm Good

Living in a building full of old people has really started to make us act like them. We sleep in and then either spend our day at the pool or the beach (today was the pool, and we attempted to play tennis first, but that's rare), then make lunch, take a nap or watch tv (cops!) read (I'm currently on "Tuesdays with Morrie" by Mitch Albom), eat an early dinner, play a rousing game of yahtzee (I'm not kidding), eat ice cream and fall asleep in front of the TV. It's so boring and so fabulous. We need friends or jobs.

Anyways, one of the things that we have really enjoyed doing since we've been here (besides becoming ping pong champs) is cooking and our current favorite is "1 Bag, 5 Dinners." The recipes are put together by Kraft and they are awesome. We actually tried this a few times in college, but it is much easier now that we have our own kitchen with working appliances (usually) and no roommates to share with.

Basically, the premise is that you choose a weekly menu and then you can fit all of the ingredients for the whole week in 1 bag. Of course, they recommend that you buy all Kraft products (shocking) and Friday is always pizza but we just get whatever's on sale at the store. None of the recipes take more than about 30 minutes to make (...because time is a huge issue for us...) and since all of the recipes are for 4 people, we have lots of leftovers so we actually have a lot more than 5 dinners.

This week we did one of the Chicken & Beef bags, but our days are all backwards so tomorrow night we will finish it off with Bruschetta Chicken Bake, which we are pretty pumped about because everything else has been soooooo good.

We're turning into little chefs. A la cuisine!

Monday, July 20, 2009


One of the especially cool things about living on our stretch of beach this time of year is all of the sea turtle nests. In fact, our little area of beach is such a sea turtle hotspot that we can't turn on our balcony lights at night from March through October.
I tried to take some pictures of the nests a few nights ago, but they're much easier to see in the morning before little human feet trample all over the sand.

This is the clearest picture I got - you can see where the mama turtle waddled up the beach, laid her eggs and waddled right back to the ocean. I really want to catch one in action!
I love the beach :)

Thursday, July 16, 2009


The move went well and we now officially live in Jupiter. Hooray! The beach life is incredible and we have taken advantage of it every day that we have been here. I'm pretty sure that I am going to end up being one of those leathery, wrinkly old women but I just can't stay away from the beautiful ocean and pool!

Just to make you jealous, here are some pictures of our new home :)

The view from our bedroom...

A shadowy view from the front door (except David's golf clubs don't usually live in the dining room...)

And...our beautiful back yard!

And, even though we were exhaused on our first night, we couldn't resist the urge to finally cook for just the 2 of us, so we made awesome spaghetti and meatballs. This is the life!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Freebies & Goodbyes

This week has been a week things!

We had been looking forward to Chick-Fil-A's "Cow Appreciation Day" for awhile, so it was our bright spot in the midst of dealing with car insurance and packing, but we didn't get around to making our cow costumes until Friday mid-morning. That said, we missed free breakfast BUT we made up for it by eating free chicken for lunch and twice for dinner. If you're not familiar with Cow Appreciation Day, it's simple - you dress up like a cow and get a free combo. Hooray! On Friday, between the 2 of us we got: 20 nuggets, 5 large fries, a chicken salad sandwich, a Chick-Fil-A sandwich, a chargrilled & fruit salad, a chicken club sandwich and 6 large drinks. Unfortunately, we didn't take any pictures of our cow costumes but we looked awesome!

Also, since last night was July 11 (or 7/11), 7-11 stores were giving away free 7.11 oz. slurpees! I don't even like slurpees but I love free stuff so I got one anyways :)

This morning, we went to church one last time and told our fabulous Sunday School class bye. We'll miss them, but consoled ourselves afterwards with one last awesome lunch. Have I mentioned before that our church's cafe makes the BEST HOMEMADE CHIPS EVER?! They do. They are awesome, crispy, seasoned planks of potato goodness and they're only $1. God bless! No kidding, the food is so good at this church that David surprised me by taking me to lunch there one day last week. But I we grabbed some chips and headed to Downtown Disney to eat at...Earl of Sandwich! If you haven't been to this jewel of a restaurant, locate one near you or book a flight to Orlando immediately. It's that good. Yum.

This ridiculously amazing meal could only be topped off by one dessert - a Cookie Bottom Sundae from Ghirardelli. So we did it. We are total fatties, but hey it's our last day in Orlando, we needed to go out with a bang.

Other than eating our way through life, everything is going well. We rented a mini-van (...which is an extra $15/day if you're under 24. Really? I can be married. I can vote. I can go to war. I can buy alcohol. I can't rent a mini-van?) and are mostly packed up and ready to move. Jupiter Island, here we come!

Thursday, July 9, 2009


So just when we thought we had a plan, things changed.

We slept in this morning and then headed to Wachovia to drop a check our pajamas. Of course, the day I wear my pajamas out of the house is the day we get in a major car accident. We pulled out to turn left onto a 4 lane divided highway, didn't see a car coming from our left and got completely t-boned.

David and I hit our heads together and the other driver claimed to be bruised (she was not a very credible or level-headed person though) but overall everyone is okay, which is what's important. David's car, on the other hand, is not okay and has a new permanent home in the junkyard.

So...we're still planning on heading to the beach, just in 1 car for now. We're thankful that no one was seriously injured and that a car can easily be replaced, but it has been a LONG day. On a brighter note, we all get a little sun while we waited 4 hours for the highway patrol. Some people pay a lot of money for UV rays and we got them for free. Gotta love Florida :)

PS aren't onomatopias funny? "Crash" and "boom" sure do a lousy job of describing the sound when you're sitting in the middle of it.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

4th of July

The past few days have been a whirlwind of excitement. We went to Virginia to visit David's family for the weekend and had a ton of fun.

Our flight out there was seriously delayed but we ended up with exit-row seats and once we (finally) took off, the whole weekend went smoothly. Plus, the temperature was only in the 70s/80s. AMAZING! We...

  • ate at a delicious side-of-the-road ice cream stand. Homestead Creamery is delicious and they have a "petting zoo" where you can touch real cows! I've never touched a cow before - this was a major accomplishment for me!
  • Had a major cook out for the 4th of July
  • (David) realized how old and out of shape he is when he played pool basketball with his brother, cousin and friend.
  • Killed a snake!
  • had a midnight snack at the infamous Texas Tavern

But most importantly, we made a decision about what we are going to be doing for the next few months. After much deliberation, stress, and patience we have decided to move to W. Palm to live at the beach for awhile. We'll miss Celebration and Orlando but we are really excited about having our own space and of course, living on the beach :) We have some ideas for where we'll be headed next but nothing is certain yet. We're planning to leave O-Town as early as next week, so book a plane ticket and come visit!