Y'all.. We're HOMEOWNERS!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

As of yesterday, at approximately 11am - Adam and I became HOMEOWNERS!

I was just waiting for something to go wrong, but it went as smooth as possible. The closing attorney was awesome and gave us the high-level explanation of everything we signed, but also told us that it didn't matter if we read everything or not - nothing's negotiable at that point. Good thing, because we weren't planning to read everything anyway!

<He did tell us that engineers are the only people who actually read all the paperwork - Nathan, I'm looking at you. :) >

So we signed our names more than we ever have before and that was that. The previous owners slid over the key (a key with a flame design on it, might I add) and we were off to lunch to celebrate!

We picked up some paint samples and spent the afternoon testing those out. I think I'll finally feel like the house is ours once it's painted. Right now I feel like I'm barging in on the previous owners' home.

After painting we had to pop bottles in OUR house, of course. Thank you to the fabulous in-laws for the champagne!

We forgot Ruthie's water bowl, so we had to make do. She is super dramatic about being hydrated, so she just had  to have some.

I have to add - we could not have done this without the world's best real estate agent - my mama! She was so on top of everything, and didn't get annoyed when I constantly bugged her with questions. We love you!

Tonight is Halloween and we're going to sit outside and try to meet our neighbors as they walk by. Fingers crossed they don't think we're super creepy!

Taygan is 1!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Adam and I were so excited to help Taygan celebrate his first birthday! But not nearly as excited as he was, clearly. Can't you feel the excitement oozing out of his expression? Ok, so maybe he just woke up from a nap.

I just can't wait to tell him that he was conceived at our wedding! (And yes Nicole, that's the story and I'm sticking to it.) We love, love Nicole & Kyte - and as Adam put it "they sure are some good people." As an added bonus, we got the spend the day with Matelyn, Tyler, Ashley and Chris. Party people in the house!

How adorable is Adam with the babe? MELT.

It was a beautiful drive up...and down. Driving through the North Carolina mountains in the Fall? Ok, fineeee.

Happy 1st birthday, Taygan! We love you so much, and are so happy we got to (finally) meet you!

Speaking of cute kiddos, Aly (my adorable 3 yr old cousin/flower girl) had a cute little funny last week. I went over to their house and had a glass of wine and she came storming in demanding "wine in a glass!". Obviously, her parents give her Kool Aid instead of wine. However, I'm interested to know what her teachers think when she demands wine during snack time...

Finally, meet the Bakers 2012 Pumpkin....Stanley! And disregard the weirdos in the window.

$10 challenge

Friday, October 19, 2012

A couple weeks back, I was able to participate in a Cooking Matters supermarket tour. Cooking Matters is another arm of Share Our Strength that focuses more on educating kids and their parents on how to buy, prepare and cook healthy, affordable meals for their families. The supermarket tour is a guided tour that explains how they're set up, what to look for on labels, how to find the best deals, etc.

I have to be honest, I didn't think it would be very exciting, but the more I thought about it the more I realized I really don't know much about how to shop for groceries! So then I got super excited about it and had my notepad and pen ready when we walked in. 

It was so much better than I expected. We toured with a group of young, single mothers and to see them really benefiting from the program - paying attention, asking questions, relating it to their shopping habits -  once again reminded me why I love my job. 

After the tour, the students were given a $10 challenge - they had to create a meal for four people for $10 or less. AND they had to include a protein, starch, vegetable and fruit. Obviously Allison and I ran to grab our own cart and did it with them! I have to give props to Allison for giving me an idea for a meal .(Remember, I'm still getting the hang of this whole cooking thing.)

Here's my basket....

Two sweet potatoes - $1.21
One pear - $1.98
One bag of frozen broccoli - $1.00
One lime - $0.25
Two chicken breasts - $2.60

TOTAL: $7.04

As fun as it was, it was also a harsh look at reality. Those who are on SNAP or WIC (aka Food Stamps) have to survive on roughly $4/day. Although it's doable, it's very difficult to do it healthy. (By the way, if you're interested they actually have Food Stamp Challenges you can participate in: http://frac.org/initiatives/snapfood-stamp-challenges/). Programs like Cooking Matters help empower these families to cook healthy meals on their budget.

Get Ready for 4G for Hunger!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The fabulous Chef Mike Fuller from Del Frisco's Grille has chosen Share Our Strength as his charity for the Verizon Wireless 4G For Hunger Campaign. If he wins, $4,000 will go to Share Our Strength! How amazing is that?? Voting won't begin until November, but you better get ready or I'm coming after you.

On Monday, I accompanied Chef Mike to the photo shoot for the campaign. Let me tell you, I could think of a lot worse ways to spend my Monday morning! It was held at the Sub Zero & Wolf showroom in Atlanta and all I can say is wowzers. I'm not even remotely a chef and I was blown away - I can only imagine what real chefs think when they walk in!

Here are some of the fun pictures I shot throughout the morning. Chef Mike is up against Chef Evelyn Paul, Chef Joe Truex from Watershed on Peachtree and Chef Shane McIntosh from Ocean Catering Company. Everyone was so great and let's be real...there isn't a loser! Whichever chef wins will be gifting $4,000 to a hunger relief charity.

someone else think of blog titles for me....

Monday, October 15, 2012

I just thought of the most genius idea. Someone should create a website where you type in keywords and it generates a blog title for you! Seriously, wouldn't that be genius? Someone go do that, and give me all the credit.

Anyway, another fabulous weekend under our belts! Here's a quick rundown of work and play....

Thursday, 10/11
The fabulous Chef Mike Fuller has picked Share Our Strength as his charity for the 4G For Hunger campaign with Verizon Wireless and Modern Luxury (more on that later...)! Conveniently, the same week his new restaurant in Atlanta opened - Del Frisco's Grille. I was able to bring a guest to the party, so I brought my mama! The food was delish, the drinks were strong and the company was the best. Chef Mike was amazing - I'm so excited to work with him on the campaign!

Friday, 10/12
Adam didn't have practice - yay!!! Want to know how we celebrated? We went to the grocery store, picked up a movie from Red Box and made dinner. And I was asleep on the couch by 9:30, Pretty exciting stuff, huh? Oh, let's not forget - Adam also checked his blood pressure. We sound so boring, but we love it. I love just hanging out with him, it's my favorite past time!

Saturday, 10/13
After Adam's practice, we headed up to the Iron Hill Trail at Allatoona Lake. We love that 4 mile loop... especially Ruthie. I had these big plans to go to a pumpkin patch after the hike and pick out our pumpkins and possibly get some hot apple cider (ok, I was really banking on them having hot apple cider). However, after 4 miles on empty stomachs, the last thing we wanted to do was go to a pumpkin patch. To solidify our decision, I realized we wouldn't even get cute pictures since we were in workout clothes. I made more big plans to go on Sunday instead. (Guess how that worked out? I went to Harry's Farmers Market by myself on Sunday and just threw a pumpkin in the cart. OVER IT. I am excited to carve it, though!)

Saturday night we helped Chad celebrate his 25th birthday. Adam and Chad played baseball together at North Georgia and I happen to love all of his friends from up there, so it worked out well!

It was a perfect fall weekend, topped off with perfect weather and a perfect hubs.

Pink Pony Supper Club

Friday, October 12, 2012

Our girls night has officially been named, and is now just plain official since we've met two months in a row. Go us!

The Pink Pony Supper Club (I don't think anyone is 100% happy with how this turned out) reconvened on Wednesday at Brenna's house. Lucky for us, Brenna's boyfriend, Josh, is a culinary grad and chef. Needless to say, we didn't exactly eat like proper ladies. YOWZA.

We also played Halloween trivia which was completely based on scary movies, so I sucked. However, I somehow won a bottle of hot sauce (we were all fighting for it) by answering a super hard question.

Q: What famous person is Michael Myers' (Halloween movies) mask a mold of?
A: William Shatner

Don't even ask me why I guessed him. I have no idea. All I know is I won some hot sauce!

We also decorated pumpkins! Dominica and I didn't bring one (such bad attendees!), but we helped out anyway. It ended up being so much fun and so messy.

Next month, Alysa's hosting and is going to have a Hot Chocolate Bar. Yummmy!

Homecoming 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012

For the first time in almost 2.5 years, I finally ended back up in Cullowhee, NC - the booming metropolis that is also home to my college that I love so very much - Western Carolina University. I could not believe how much the campus has changed, but the drive up there was just as stunning as I remember.

I also brought along Dominica for the ride, and as much as I tried to prepare her for what kind of situation she was about to be in - she didn't believe me until we were finally there. (Oh, it also might have had something to do with the fact that I forgot to tell her there's no taxis or cell service until we were about 15 minutes away...) Regardless, it was an amazing weekend filled with even more friend time and zero drama - MY FAVORITE.

The Princess, Natalie, turned 24 on Thursday so I made this little treat. (Shout out to Whitt for buying the cake!)

We hit up the usual spots: Speedy's, O'Malley's, Bogarts. And also the new "bars" in town: Rae's and No Name. Clearly we made a scene everywhere we went - it's really not our fault everyone knows us! :) Casually, we got a ride home in a limo with DJ Candy on Friday.

I got to catch up with an old friend, Chris Masters - love that kid. And the icing on the cake actually came at dinner on our first night... Dr. William Dulaney happened to be stopping in to Speedy's for a pitcher of beer the same time we were! He was by far mine and Emily's favorite professor, but he no longer works at Western. He was riding through on his hog and just happened to be there when we were! We asked him to go to Homecoming with us on Saturday and his reply was "Not a chance in hell." See why we love him?

The rest of our trip was spent laughing, drinking, seeing old friends, making new ones. You know, really deep stuff.

In other news, Adam's softball team is in the state playoffs and play the deciding game 3 vs. Brookwood in one hour! I would (of course) be there, but I'm bringing my mama along to a fancy work event. Everyone send good vibes to Adam and the Lady Trojans!

whole lotta nothing

Monday, October 1, 2012

This past weekend was pretty low key, and I loved every second of it! I didn't realize until Saturday that Adam and I literally have plans every single weekend in October. And on top of that, we have to pack up our place to get ready for the move. YIKES.

Adam's been so tied up with softball that I realized we haven't really done anything together in a long time. Being that he's a coach, he gets into all Georgia High School sports games free, and he gets to bring a guest. On Friday, I decided we were going to get our butts out of the house and do something. And that something ended up going to the Lassiter football game. (I've finally accepted the fact that Lassiter will never be in my rear-view mirror.) However, being a coach's wife has its perks - check out our seats.

I sat with the head softball coach's wife and kids - she was so sweet and holy cow, those kids were entertaining! The two year old was doing yoga (yes, literally sitting in a lunge with her hands up) and the four year old boy was doing toe touches. Kind of makes me want one, until the two year old asked to go poop. NEVER MIND.

I've been a terrible coach's wife and have only gone to 10 minutes of one of Adam's softball games this year (sorry I'm not sorry that I don't find softball fun to watch). I did make it to Saturday's game and redeemed myself! The game was a big deal for a super dumb reason. (If you feel like hearing the terribly dictated story, here ya go...) The team is ranked #1 in the state, and the only two games they've lost have been in the region - so they're #3 in the region. Some genius who makes the rules decided it would be a good idea to have a one game playoff to get into the region tournament. If his team lost on Saturday they were DONE for the year. DONE. The #1 team in the state would not have even played in the state tournament. Ridiculous. However, they won 7-0 so they are off to the playoffs!

Mitchell was also in town this weekend, so we had to hit Taco Mac for lunch on Saturday (oh, fineeeee). He seems to be loving college and his fraternity, which is so great to hear! He was having a hard time adjusting for awhile (don't we all?), but he finally seems to be hitting his groove. So proud of that kid!

Sunday was one of the best days I've had in awhile. Because I did NOTHING. As in, the only time I got off the couch and changed out of my PJs was to go to the grocery store at 3pm. It was fabulous. Adam went golfing with his dad, so Ruthie and I had the house to ourselves. I have to admit, I wish Adam was there so we could have just had a movie day, but I guess he's allowed to use the golfing coupon that I bought him last October and expired today so he had to use it yesterday (such a procrastinator, but at least he used it!).

After I got my butt off the couch and to the grocery store, I was determined to cook. (Remember that whole "I'm starting to love cooking!" phase? It wore off real quick. Honestly, I do love to cook I just do not like all the prep behind it. Barf.) The meal was pretty delish/unhealthy - my specialty!

1.5 lbs ground chicken (That sounds disgusting, but Adam makes ground chicken all the time so I just stole some of his. It was actually delicious!)
1 bunch of green onions, finely chopped
1 diced fresh jalapeno pepper
1/4 cup of water
1 package taco seasoning mix (What's up, 2 weeks worth of sodium?)
1 cup plain, nonfat yogurt
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (I thought this was weird - shouldn't it be mexican cheese?)
6 corn tortillas

- Preheat oven to 350
- In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the ground chicken, green onion, and jalapeno pepper until the beef is evenly brown. Stir in water and taco seasoning. Simmer until water has evaporated.
- In a medium bowl, mix together yogurt, condensed soup, and cheese.
- Divide the meat mixture evenly between tortillas. Place a couple of tablespoons of cheese mixture over meat, and roll up. Place in a 7x11 inch baking dish. Repeat for each tortilla. Spoon remaining cheese mixture over the top of the tortillas.
- Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes. (I did 25.)

I served it with mexican rice and that was that! I probably should have put something green on the plate... eh, maybe one day I'll be that advanced.

I also made brownies from scratch! (And by scratch I mean I added vegetable oil, water and an egg to the mix.) I was really just craving the mix, but went ahead and actually cooked the brownies, too. Worst. Idea. Ever. I got a tummy ache from eating too much of the mix (READ: raw egg), and then we finished 2/3 of the pan last night. FANTASTIC. I feel so healthy and skinny today.