Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Cardboard & Felt

The office is full of cardboard boxes, large cardboard boxes, and lots of lots of felt...The end product will be beautiful, I know it! 

Ornament Stories

One reason I love decorating my Christmas tree is because all of the ornaments have a story behind them.  So my whole tree is like a tall, green, light up story book of my life!  And now I will share some of the stories with you, because I love stories :)

I bought this little slipper ornament while I was in China this summer.

Sushi!  There's not really a story behind this one, I just like sushi.

So, I eat bananas with a spoon.  I've done it since 7th grade and probably always will.

I got this one in college, because Milligan's mascot is a buffalo.

It's a little hard to read, but this one says Maid of Honor.  It has the date of Amanda and Jonathan's wedding on it, and is the shade of blue of our bridesmaid dresses.  Mom gave it to me, and a wedding one to Amanda, while we were getting ready for the wedding.

A Patriot ornament for the crazy sport fan in me.

Photographer ornament, kind of self explanatory I guess.

I bought this one on either my first or second trip to New York City, my junior or senior year of high school.

One of my best friends, Ashley, always gives me an ornament for Christmas, and sometimes she makes them!  She made me this one two years ago.

I picked out the lobster ornament several summers ago while we were in Maine, where my dad grew up.  And I actually don't know where the stocking came from, but it's been around since I was 2 or 3.

And I had some friends come over last night to help my decorate my apartment, because things like this are more fun and enjoyable with people you love.

And Ivy brought me an adorable little gift!   Homemade hot chocolate mix and Rice Crispy Treat pops, all wrapped up in fun, festiveness!

Country Christmas Tree Lot

I love the Smokey the Bear billboard, and the wagon on the roof.
One of the many holiday traditions that my family has is that we always get our Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving.  It doesn't always get put up and decorated, but we get it.  While I lived at home we always went to a tree farm and cut it down ourselves, but more recently we've just been going to a tree lot, which is ok too.  This year we went to a lot that we haven't been to before, and I loved it!  It wasn't just a tree lot, but also a cute little country store too.  There was local produce, lots of candy and homemade preserves, and antiques decorating the place.  It was like we stepped back in time.  I love places like that!

Molly went with us this year.  Cute lil' puppy!


Saturday, November 26, 2011

Cotton Pickin'

We were almost to my Granny's house on Thursday when we passed a small field of cotton.  I was surprised and excited.  Surprised because we've passed this field every time we go to Granny's, for my whole entire life and I've never seen cotton there, and excited because cotton is becoming a trend in decorating, so I could get some for free!  So as we were leaving to come back to Lynchburg we stopped and picked some cotton!  I got one big branch of it, and then a few smaller pieces.  I can't wait to figure out how to display it at home! 



 I searched around online and found some decorating ideas.  I don't have enough cotton to actually do any of those things, but they're still fun to look at :)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday

So after we had eaten Thanksgiving dinner and were sitting around miserably trying to let our dinner digest, Mom asked if I wanted to go Black Friday shopping, which isn't something we normally do, but I said, "Sure, why not?"  So a little after midnight, Mom, Granny, and I headed to the shopping center.  Our first stop was Rack Room Shoes, where Mom and I got nothing and Granny walked out with a pair of boots.  Our next stop was Kohl's.  We walked around aimlessly for a while, because they're weren't any main, big ticket items we were after.  Mom and I each picked up a few things, and when we were ready to go, we became aware of the line.  Which was long.  Really, really long.  We looked at what we had and figured that we could still get most of it the next day, with the exception of one item.  I've been on the lookout for a picture frame that says sisters for months now.  They're not too hard to find, I'm just really picky, and I had finally found one I loved.  The only problem was that it was on clearance and the last one they had, so if someone else got it, that was it.  I'd noticed that not many people were shopping in the Home Decor department, so if I hid the frame, it would be likely that it would be there the next day.  So I hid the frame behind a stack of ugly painting, and we put our other items back on the shelf and we left!  Granny had gone and sat down to wait on us and when she saw us so quickly, she looked a little surprised.  "We found an express lane," Mom said, and I said "Yea, a put it back on the shelf and come back tomorrow express lane."  So we went back this morning, relocated all of our items, except a purse that Mom had wanted, and stood in line for only 20 minutes!  We've also learned that Black Friday shopping at midnight is not for us!
In line on the second trip.
 There was one funny moment in the experience though.  I was looking at pajamas, because Mom, Amanda, and I get matching pajamas every Christmas, and when I turned around there was a rack of bras.  There was a tag that said Adds 2 Cup Sizes, but when I glanced at it I thought it said Ages 2 And Up.  Haha, not quite!

Turkey Trot

I ran mostly ran a 5k on Thanksgiving morning.  I didn't run it last year, because we were out of town, but I ran it the two years before that, and I never take it too seriously, it's more just for fun.  I ran it with Lindsay, one of my sister's best friends, one of my best friend's sister, and since neither of us had been training too hard, our goal was just to finish it without walking.  

The course was in downtown Lynchburg for the first time, and since over 1300 people ran in the race, it started out slowly.  We just jogged along for a while, chatting and pointing out funny things.  A little after mile 1 we made it to the HUGE hill.  Oh. my. goodness.  It was steep and it was long, and just when I thought I couldn't go any further we made it to the top.  Thank you, Lord!  There was a nice long straight away before we had to turn around and go back, which meant running down that hill.  Now that, I could handle!  But then we got passed by a lady pushing a stroller and running with her dog.  That's a real confidence boost.  But we kept running along, gearing up for one last hill.  It was hard but we made it to the top, and then I just wanted to collapse.  I kept running.  Slowly, mind you, and then I just had to walk for a bit.  I started running again when I saw my mom on the sidewalk taking pictures, and I finished out running.  My final time was 35:35, which is my slowest 5k time, and a little disappointing, but that course was killer.  But we did talk with several experienced runners, and they all commented on how hard those hills were, and at one point we came to a standstill because things got bottle necked at the foot bridge, so considering those things, I don't feel quite as bad about the time.  And hey, I got up early and ran on Thanksgiving day!

I actually spotted Dad, which wasn't too hard with my green polka dotted camera strap :)

There we go, up those awful hills!
Almost done!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Well I made it safely to Lynchburg.  Dad came to Johnson City last night and today we towed my car back here.  A new engine is being put in, and I should be back in business soon.

There are lots of things I love about coming home, and one of them is my cat, Chex.  I was so glad to see her on the back porch this afternoon, because I hadn't seen her in months.  We have a doggy door that she uses, so she comes and goes as she pleases, and sometimes she disappears for a week or so.  We're convinced she has another family that she stays with, because when she does come home she's still well fed and not all dirty and matted up.  Well earlier this fall she had been gone for almost two months!  We thought that maybe she was gone for good, but then she showed back up again.  She's a spoiled rotten little priss, and I love her :)

She quickly found my laundry hamper.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Red Sox Onesie

I went through tonight and cleared off all the pictures from both my memory cards, which resulted in stumbling across pictures I had forgotten about.  In this post from October, I showed a picture of a package and said that I would tell you later what was inside.  Which is where this long lost picture comes from.  I had taken a picture of it and had forgotten about it.  It's this Red Sox onesie, how cute is it!?!?  It was a gift for my friends Josh and Heather who live in Boston and are expecting their first child in January.  I got it on Etsy, from the shop ThisPretty.

Girls Night w/ the Animals

Saturday night was a much needed break from the craziness of life here in Johnson City.  It was my friend Jessie's birthday this weekend, and a group of us girls met up in Morristown to eat dinner and then headed to Jessica's house to crash and eat cake.  

Happy Birthday Jessie!
Jessica likes loves animals.  She had a dog named Lucy through most of college, and Lucy was actually part of Jessica and Will's wedding.  Our friend Staci walked her down the aisle.  Actually, it was more like Lucy walking Staci down the aisle!  And just a few weeks after getting married they had already taken in another dog and a kitten.  Thankfully, we all enjoy Jessica's animals too, and we had a fun night with Harley and Ruby.  Lucy was staying with Jessica's mom for the night, because she can get just a little too excited when people come over.


Crazy animals...and crazy Staci in the back ground!
 And I think one of the funniest moments was when I commented on the fact that half of the girls were in their pajamas, we were drinking coffee, eating coffee cake, looking at pictures of cute puppies on Pinterest, and critiquing the uniforms of the USC and Oregon players while the game was on mute.  The epitome of girls night!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Carrot Souffle

We had a Thanksgiving Potluck and Karaoke Night last night with our ministry team students.  I told Samantha that I'd make whatever we needed, and she suggested a carrot souffle since we didn't have any carrot dishes.  I've eaten carrot souffle once, and I loved it!  But I was a little scared to make it, because souffle just sounds fancy, and fancy usually means difficult when it comes to cooking.  But when I started looking at recipes, it seemed pretty simple, and turns out, it was!  The only bad thing was that I couldn't sample it (cause I didn't want to eat anything til' dinner), and I hate serving food I haven't sampled.  When I finally tried it, I thought that it was good, and others did too!  I'll definitely have to make this again next time I make a food that isn't dessert or soup; which isn't often...

Carrot Souffle
  • 1 lb. carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup margarine, softened
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • brown sugar and confectioners sugar (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and lightly grease a 2 quart casserole dish.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Add carrots and cook until tender, 15-20 minutes.  Drain and mash.

     When you don't have the right tools, you improvise.   
    I don't have a masher, so I used the bottom of a whisk!
    It took a while though, cause the carrots kept getting stuck inside.
    • Stir in margarine, vanilla extract, and eggs.  Mix well.
    • Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar; stir into carrot mixture and blend until smooth.
    • Transfer to prepared casserole dish and bake for 45 minutes.
    • Sprinkle with brown sugar and confectioners sugar (optional).
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