December 23, 2010

seasons greetings

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December 22, 2010

home for christmas.

It's no secret that Mike and I love the quaint small town we live in here in Alabama. We are avid local business supports and as the holidays drew closer this year we decided to show them all how much we appreciated them. As a team we set out on a quest to purchase all of our Christmas gifts at neighborhood mom and pop stores. I'm happy to report that over 80% of our gifts were purchased locally. I enjoy knowing that we are stimulating our local economy and helping build upon our community.

I will be the first to admit that I failed when it came to purchasing Mike's gifts from local merchants - but to be fair the only things on his Christmas list were items that aren't made here in town. Literally if you looked at his list and held it up to a 13 year old boy's Christmas list, they would be identical. Lots of PS3 and XBox style items.  Everyone else on our list has received something purchased here from local stores, minus a gift card and one other gift which I can't mention due to the fact that the person may read this.

We avoided just about every bit of holiday stress by doing this. You want to know how many times we've made a trip to the mall since Thanksgiving, ZERO. That's right. We haven't stepped foot in the mall once this season for Christmas shopping. The only reason we went to the mall at all was when Mike needed a haircut before Thanksgiving, that's it. I can't begin to tell you how awesome that is. Trips to Target this season for holiday shopping? ONE! Mike may have ventured there on his own, so we could say TWO if need. Number of times I cussed people up and down in my head while shopping in our downtown area... ZERO. This to me is an amazing feeling in itself and almost like a gift we gave each other of a better over all feeling and well being for Christmas. Talk about having the Christmas Spirit, it's so much easier when you aren't feeling like you may need to strangle someone... when you don't have to wait in a long ass line to get two items... when you don't have to bash someone's cart out of your way... and when you actually have the owner of the store cater to you, and help you with all your questions, thoughts and concerns because they want to, not because corporate has told them they need to.

With all the local shopping we've had an overwhelming feeling of pride for our town and the owners of these stores are floored and excited when we told them about our game plan to buy all local. One merchant even gave me a discount on 2 items I purchased when she heard that come from our lips. She thanked me over and over and hoped we'd get our word out so more people would do the same. We have every possible big name store you could hope for around here, and even though our mall is a little sad it is a decent place to shop for a lot of people all at once - I by no means think everyone should do this, you may not have a selection of great local stores around your town like we do, but the next time you go out shopping for holidays, birthdays, or anything maybe take a few minutes to think about what treasures you may find in a non-chain store. And at the same time how you may be helping out a business owner in your community, one that doesn't have a huge backing financially but is full of heart and pride for their stores and their community.

Taking this hometown Christmas a step further, in order to help out our fellow man, and our planet we went with the whole, reduce, reuse and recycle theory to our gift wrap this year. We usually purchase all new wrapping paper every year, instead this year we are reusing a rustic snowflake paper we've had for at least two years. It's almost gone, and that's upsetting and exciting at the same time. To know that with the money I saved on wrapping paper I can put it toward stocking stuffers, is totally exciting. The roll being almost gone is what's upsetting, I really love the pattern. Since most of our gifts were purchased locally, we also received free gift wrapping! We let the gift wrap from the first store we shopped at dictate how our wrapping style would be for all our gifts [yes, I like to have a theme/style]. Basic craft wrap and beautiful ribbons were used on my gifts from Mike and some of the gifts we got his family. Most of the items were wrapped up and then placed in large craft bags with tons of tissue paper. I have taken it upon myself to deconstruct the bags, saving them to use for wrapping paper if needed, or bags for larger gifts and saved the tissue which has come in very handy for items that need to be boxed with tissue, and other re-used bags that we have received that fit this same color scheme. We haven't had to purchase one single bit of ribbon, we've only used left over, not a single bit of tissue, or gift bags yet. The only item I purchased new were some name tags. We had contemplated just writing the names on the bags, but then people couldn't reuse them and keep the cycle going so we opted for cheap, stick on tags from Rite Aid. It's only a few days until the big holiday and I don't think we will need anymore gift wrap, and we may even have some left over to reuse again next year. Thankfully at my job we use kraft wrap to fill boxes for transport. I've been able to snag a few scrap bits to wrap Mike's gifts before bringing them home - he not only has a list like a 13 year old, he snoops like one too.  I know that wrapping paper seems like such a little amount of money but when you add up the paper, the tissue, the tags the ribbons all that go together, at the end of the day it's a nice lump of money... money we saved, and by reusing items it's less in the landfill - at least on our end. [Don't think I won't be walking around trying to take back some of the bags we have used this year, they are REALLY cute and I would reuse them again and again].

I can honestly say I've never felt so happy about the holidays as I do this year. I am excited to know that most of the gifts we've chosen for our friends and family, aren't ones that will be found under everyone else's tree this year. We took time and choose each gift with that specific person in mind and it actually felt like it took less time this year than in years past. I think when you're in the mall or department chain you get so overwhelmed and over stimulated by the noise, the people, and the displays that you sometimes over spend or forget why you are there in the first place. I haven't had that overwhelmed feeling this year - safe for maybe my last trip to Target, and it's nice to feel so calm about the holidays coming up. My main panic thing right now is the cookies I need to bake! Regardless of where your gifts come from - I hope you were able to find all you needed for that special someone on your list!!! And most importantly that you have a very happy holiday!

How has your holiday shopping gone this year?

Don't forget to tell me your favorite Christmas memories! Read THIS post!

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December 21, 2010

christmas memories.

Here we are, staring down the last three full days until Christmas Eve. Where did the season go? The preparation I thought I would have? The gifts under the tree I thought would all be purchased and wrapped with pretty little bows. Where did all that go? Out the window I guess. I didn't even get a chance to get together Christmas cards for my friends and family. No, I haven't been all bah humbug, or even a Grinch in the least, I've just a very busy bee I guess. Busy with work, with life, with birthdays - oh MY the birthdays this time of year. In our immediate circle of friends and family alone there have been 7 birthdays between Thanksgiving and now. This tidbit alone is enough to make me feel OK about being a bit behind in finishing my Christmas shopping. It's difficult to get that finished while birthday shopping for others.

How are the rest of you fine ladies and gents doing with all your holiday plans? I know many of you have been blogging your hearts out about Christmas. I must say Shana has been on the ball over at her blog with her days of Christmas count down. Even Salt has popped her head in to keep us up to date on all her holiday cheer. Not to be out done Hotpants has given us the secrets to what her little babies will be finding under her tree and so many more of you have kept my Christmas Spirits high and my feeling like a slacker points right up there as well. All "letting it slide" aside, I've been rather jolly this year. For the first time in two years since my mother passed away I've felt semi normal during the holidays this year. That's not to say I haven't lost it a few times, but in the end I carry with me the memories that she always made possible this time of year. I thought what better way to blog about the holidays than to share memories that always make this time of year so special to me, and in turn ask you to share some of yours as well.

Christmas Memories
Wish big! • via

Some of my fondest memories of this season involve my mother, she was always so prepared. No matter how frazzled she may have been on the inside trying to give my father and I the perfect Christmas she rarely let it show.  It all started with the tree. We would walk for hours from tree farm to tree farm to find the perfect tree. Long needles and taller than all of us - it had to touch the ceiling and the "Christmas Chicken" [dove] had to have enough room to fit on top. My birthday is the 1st of December and many years into my teens we would celebrate with a tree decorating slumber party, those were memorable times but I think my most favorite and cherished thoughts were the years when she started to teach me how to decorate the tree. I will always blame my perfectionist ways with tree decorating on her. When I was young child the tree was a huge array of blue and silver hues. I can remember the Christmas balls like it was yesterday in the perfect shade of bright blue. Our lights were always white. ALWAYS white.

This ain't yo momma's tree • via

My mother hated multi colored strands, I used to be upset that our tree didn't blink, or have twinkles or different colors, but once I got a bit older I completely appreciated my mother's attention to not only detail but her taste as well. Never one to leave any detail out, my mother always made sure my yearly creations made it back on the tree. From the popsicle stick sled to the toilet paper tube drummer boy, they were always there, front and center. While many of these ornaments didn't survive over the years, a few did and they are ones I have since acquired and that mean the most to me. After I grew out of my crib, my mother transformed the mobile charms into ornaments. Holly Hobby like friends all hung around the tree each year and still do to this day at my home. I plan to hopefully carry on this tradition with my own children one day. Each year I can remember picking out different brass ornaments, having them engraved with my name and placing them on the tree. Bonus points go to the ones we have that actually have the date they were made on them. I like those the most.

Being an only child has it's perks. On Christmas day there was no waiting to see what each kid got around the tree - I could race down the steps, jump to the presents and rip them to shreds without worrying about what anyone else was doing. All eyes were on me. Mom and Dad had already exchanged gifts and it was my time to shine. Santa's gifts always came in different paper, after all why would Santa have the same paper as the grocery store, where my parents purchased theirs. And my stocking was always filled to the brim. There was always a small box or two, filled with sparkles from my father.  I soon learned these gifts came from him, and usually from the jewelry store he always shopped at, again the paper never matched anything else. I was a bit sad yesterday when my father called me to let me know I wouldn't be getting sparkles this year. Truth be told I really don't need anymore. And it wasn't the lack of sparkle that upset me. After 34 years of birthdays and Christmas, I've gained quite a collection of fine jewelry, but he informed me that the sweet man he used to shop with had passed away in October and his store was currently closed for mourning. It's sad to think that such an icon in our lives and my father's favorite shopping option for friends, family and loved ones was gone. He's been shopping there for over 30 years and I can trace just about every fine item of gold back to that man's store, his talent and his art. I had only met him once, and told him I was obsessed with unicorns. I can remember picking out a very small, dainty charm that was a Unicorn head made to look as if it was made of lace. I still have this charm. It's by far my favorite. Over the years, my father and this man became close friends and they had both always marveled over how my taste changed. From gold to white gold, from unicorns to dolphins and from dolphins to owls. I can trace my jewelry box and it's contents all the way back to my 2nd birthday, it's pretty amazing. It's sad to see he's gone, and that a Christmas tradition I always looked forward to will have to live in my memories.

I bet as a child you can remember your mom or grandmother or some family memeber going nuts over Christmas cookies and baking, can't you? I don't know if there are many mom's that went as nuts as my mom did. Thankfully she never had to bake for holiday parties at my school - I think that may have been the straw that would break the camels back on that. But cookies... my GOSH did she make a lot of cookies. Any kind you could imagine, I still don't know how she did it. Cookies for us, cookies for friends, cookies for my grandmothers and family and teachers and cousins. It was crazy how many cookies this woman would make every year. And even crazier how many I would eat ever year!!! She actually had to make extras of certain kinds because my father and I would eat them all! I make cookies each year, but I will never top my mother. After about 4 different recipes I loose my steam and I never carve out enough time to make them all. This year I have all the ingredients and they've been in the pantry for two weeks. I hope to make a dent in them this week, but it's hard to say - those last minute Christmas gifts are still looming over me.

nom, nom, nom • via

I have about a million more memories I could share, but I will leave you with one more, it's my favorite of all time....

Every Christmas, well until I was probably about 12 - 14 years old my mother would tuck me in. After all the lights were off, I had placed out cookies for Santa and all the animals [we had 2 dogs and 2 cats] were snuggled with me in bed, my mother would crack open my bedroom window from the top. She'd tell me goodnight and warned me not to stay up too late or Santa wouldn't come. She explained to me when I was younger that maybe if we left the window cracked I'd be able to hear Santa's sleigh bells coming and know to stay in my room and be quite so that he wouldn't leave without dropping off my gifts. Every year I would crank my ears to listen for bells, and I'm sure every year I would drift off after staying up way too late. I swear one year I heard the bells and it took all I had to say in my bed. I wanted to jump out of bed, run down the hall and scream for Santa, my parents and anyone else that was close enough to hear... but I didn't, I laid paralyzed in my bed, not moving a muscle until I thought the coast was clear.  This was also the year I started my own personal tradition... After I thought it was safe, I snuck down the hall on the creaking wood floors, down the steps and into the living room for my first sneak peek of my bounty for the year. It was awesome!!! The Christmas tree lights bounced off the bright paper and I remember the vision like it was yesterday. I figured I had already done too much by peeking son instead of shaking, rattling or breaking any gifts I ran back up stairs without touching a thing and waited for the sun to rise. I learned years before this night that 4 AM is not an acceptable time to wake two parents who had spent the evening drinking wine while I slept, celebrating their own Christmas together. After this year of my first "peek" - every year after that until my parents divorced I would sneak down to look at all my gifts and survey everything, and often times plan my attack on the gifts, which I would open first, if mom and dad said it was OK. You know how they like to leave the best for last and all.

I'm always dreaming of a white Chrsitmas • via

So tell me....
Do you have a favorite Christmas memory or a never ending tradition? Please share for all to read in the comments section!


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December 06, 2010

being a winner rocks!

I will start this post by saying that I rarely win anything, [the only other giveaway I've ever won via blog was the amazing one over at Saltwater Dreams - I'm still excited about that and it's been months!] so when I found out that I was among 150+ loyal followers of The Lil Bee to win the Apart Giveaway I was floored! The great people at Apart  are givers, seriously sweet, givers! They granted all who entered the contest the items we said we loved most. I was shocked and literally walked around the entire day with a smile on my face. I'd be lying if I said I didn't cry a little bit, because I did. I welled right up with joy, at work,  at the thought of winning an item from this amazing clothing line. Originally there was going to be one big winner and a few runners up, all of which would have won gift certificates to purchase the amazing clothing and accessories from the website [check it out here if you haven't already clicked the link above].

I think the main reason I welled up so much is because this gesture from the people at Apart was so grand in my eyes. I've never purchased any fine fashion items for myself, ever. Most of my clothing comes from clearance racks or places like Target, small places in the mall or were received as gifts from family members over the years. Where I live currently, fashion is very limited, to put it nicely. We have a few grand department stores in the mall locally and a few other side stores, otherwise I'm at the mercy of not only my slim pickin's but also my tiny wallet and budget.  I love that I am frugal but every once in a while it's nice to spoil yourself, or have others spoil you with a classic piece. I have to say I felt a bit like a princess in that moment and promptly emailed Melisa (of The Lil Bee fame) to thank her for having the giveaway and allowing me to add an amazing piece to my wardrobe. One I am sure I will wear for years to come. [Note: If you haven't visited Melisa @ The Lil Bee yet, you're missing out! Her blog is one of my must reads!]

I'm sure you're wondering what item I picked - well it was a tough choice but the item that called to me the most was one that Melisa featured in her giveaway blog. I'm a sucker for houndstooth, not just because of the University of Alabama (ROLL TIDE!) but because it's a great pattern. When I saw this image I was floored and thought "IT MUST ME MINE!"

via apart
Be sure to check out their other Houndstooth items if you love the pattern!
There is a dress that I swooned over and would DIE to add to my wardrobe!

My package arrived today [11/30/2010] - a day before my birthday. So needless to say I was excited. Happy Birthday to me! I wish I had the right accessories and items of clothing to pull together the perfect look for a night out on the town but I don't. This will have to be fixed ASAP because I can't wait to wear this item. I know this post is useless without images of myself but I have to say I'm truly sorry. I'm not lying when I say I have nothing in my possession that would do this skirt justice. As soon as I do I will model it for you no worries!

The skirt is amazing, you know how sometimes you purchase and item from a website and it doesn't live up to your expectations once it's in your hands, this is NOT the case with this skirt. I am head over heels in love with it. It's warm, frilly and lined with soft fabric - and looks exactly like it does on the website. I was actually thrilled and floored to discover that it fits me just right as well. I was fearful they wouldn't have my size, and since I started working out I was fearful I'd get it and not be able to fit into it. I'm not a model size, by any means and this skirt fit me like a dream! I really can't say enough about how much I am in love with this item and the chance to own it. Thank you again Melisa for having the giveaway and Amandine, from Apart for sponsoring and being so giving!

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December 03, 2010

fixation friday: holiday movies

Hello Lovelies! It's been a while. Not only was Fixation Friday on a break but I guess I was too. I'll try to be better about that but, when life starts tossing you lemons or limes you better make some kick ass mixed drinks and suffer the hangover because honestly how often does life toss you the perfect fruit to compliment vodka right? In not so many words I've been busy. Between Thanksgiving, my birthday and all the holidays that are coming up I'm lucky to have two minutes to myself, let alone time to bang out an awesome blog post. With that in mind I'm going to slightly recycle a post from last year but give it a bit of a tune up. I got to thinking about my favorite holiday movies again after reading Hotpants' post over at Handbags and Handguns.  She's pretty much nailed the holiday spirit in movies right on the head, but I had a few of my own I needed to add. So here are my favorite Christmas movies to date.

A Christmas Story 
Yes I could watch this over and over and over and over and over again and I do every year! It never gets old. I love Ralphie and the entire story! "I can't put my arms down!!!"

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
Seriously - Christmas is not the same without this movie - LOVE! I come from a very small family and never truly experienced a holiday quite this chaotic until I started dating Mike. His family is huge and often times it feels like a scene from this movie during the holidays... or maybe from the beginning of THIS movie....

Home Alone
I adore this movie - I could watch it a million times. Mike had Home Alone 2 playing on tv the other night and it just didn't do the trick. #1 is #1! "I got the milk, eggs and fabric softener."

Die Hard
Yes, seriously!!! It's set during Christmas time and he saves the day!
"Ho, Ho, Ho... Now I have a machine gun."
Most girls may not agree but, care? Mike is happy that I enjoy this flick and consider it a holiday tradition, which works out great for us. I think I'll bake some cookies and watch this soon!

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
It's a classic and one that reminds me of being a kid.
Plain and simple!

My next choice is one I was reminded how much I loved last night when I watched it on TV. I own this movie and it just didn't dawn on me how touching this movie is to me until last night. In my opinion you can never go wrong when you put your entertainment trust in a man like Bill Murray.

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this movie.  It's a comedic and touching adaptation of the classic Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, one of my favorite all time Christmas stories, out done only by the Gift of the Magi by O. Henry. That story always touches my heart.

The Family Stone
This movie is beyond touching and I love how real it is. It was tough for me to watch it the first few times, for personal reasons but in the end I realize how magical it really is. It quickly became a seasonal must for me and I will often times watch it in the middle of the summer just to get warm fuzzies!

Elf (SO adorable)
Bad Santa (while it's not family friend it's freaking funny!)
It's a Wonderful Life
Mean Girls (it has Christmas in it!)
A Charlie Brown Christmas
Four Christmases (We all know the deal with me and Vince)

I could go on and on - what are you favorite holiday movies?

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November 24, 2010

giving thanks.

It's that time of year again. Time to stuff our faces, go into turkey commas, watch football {ROLL TIDE ROLL!!!} and for some of us awaken the next day for the craziest shopping extravaganza ever! {Me included, possibly}. During all this holiday hoopla it's important to remember why we celebrate this holiday. I for one feel it's important to take a day to be eternally thankful for things in your life but I'm also a firm believer that this should be practiced everyday, and if possible, that the people and luxuries in your life, that mean the most should never be taken for granted. All that being said I thought I'd share a list of things I'm thankful for, and in return ask you to tell me what you're most thankful for this holiday and every day of your life.

Happy Thanksgiving to one and all, regardless of if you celebrate this holiday, find a moment everyday to reflect on what you are most thankful for.

Today and Everyday 
I am Most Thankful For:
My Father
My Mother and the time I had with her.
My Family
My Friends {The Family I chose for myself}
My Loved Ones
My Pets
My Health
My Home
My Job
My Freedom
My Country
My Military
And all of you my loyal readers 
 and most importantly NEW FRIENDS! oxoxo

Today and Everyday
Things I Enjoy and Give Thanks For:
Clean Drinking Water
Running Water to Bathe With
*** DVR
Captain Morgan
Kettle One
Ice Cold Michelob Ultra
Jack Daniels
Ginger Ale
Diet Dr. Pepper
Music and The Arts
Food Network
The History Channel
My Own Cooking Skills
Chelsea Lately!
30 Rock • Community • Parks and Rec • The Office
The Walking Dead • True Blood • Mythbusters
American Pickers • Paranormal State • The Soup
Magic Erasers
Chicken Wings
Pumpkin Pie
Cranberry Sauce
Four Letter Words - I love them.
Frizz Ease
Mac and Cheese
P-90X and Fitness
My 2 New Pairs of Boots
Skinny Jeans
Great Haircuts
Angus Young • Chelsea Handler • Tina Fey • Burt Reynolds
Feminism and Girl Power
The Pilgrims
Mexican Food • Italian Food • Chinese Food • Japanese Food
{basically all the type so of cuisine we can eat here in the U.S.A.}
Milk and Cheese
My Jeep

*** Added after the amazingly awesome Hotpants commented and made me realize I left off the most important luxury that I covet every. single. day!! My love you DVR!

Seriously this could go on and on.... I have a lot to be thankful for in my life, way more than I have to be sad about and that's what makes life enjoyable and worth living.

I hope you all have a safe and loving Thanksgiving holiday! 
So tell me what are you most thankful for? How do you celebrate the holiday? And who's ready for TURKEY!?!?!?

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November 20, 2010

where has the time gone?

Dear Mike,
Can you believe it's been six years already? It seems like only yesterday we were exchanging messages on each others myspace pages. Upon seeing your picture on there, I knew I had to talk to you, you were just too cute to pass up. Shallow yes, but I'm glad it brought us together. When I read your profile further I knew you were something special. It isn't often you come across someone that is extremely attractive and at the same time completely down to earth. I wouldn't admit it to myself but I was completely smitten with you from that point on. I tried to be rational but try as I might I did think about you more often than I dared to admit. Thankfully deep down I think you were feeling the same way. We've come a long way from our myspace days, but it really does seem like we met in person last week at that fun bar with the karaoke room an the great back patio. I can still remember the look on your face when I surprised you by coming all that way to meet you in person without you knowing. It was such a risk and honestly I'm still floored that I had the guts to do it. I don't do things like that, ever but again, I'm glad I did.

 Mike and I and his BFF, G - June 2004

Our first nigh together - June 2004 SURPRISE!

I really had no idea how far that trip alone would take us. After talking for over a year as just friends, June 2004 made this connection a reality. We both knew we were 100% real. The people we claimed we were materialized before us and we could finally relax and enjoy ourselves and I for one can say I did, completely.

It would take us almost five strained months after this to decide what we really wanted from each other. Between distance and personal matters we were both dealing with, we worried about taking the leap to be together. Being burned in the past never makes things easy for future relationships but at some point you just have to throw caution to the wind and give faith a chance. In November 2004 we did just that and I couldn't have been more over the moon!
The night before we made it official - November 2004

We wouldn't have made it this far without our trust, our faith in each other and our ability to get along no matter what the circumstances. I guess it's safe to admit that we never would have made it this far without the help of our friends and families. Without my Bestie T and a big night out on the town, I never would have devised a plan to come surprise you. It was all her idea, all her doing and between T, myself and your buds G and H we executed the plan perfectly and I couldn't have done it without them. I owe them everything for helping us make the first step. I think you know we also owe Miss K a huge thank you for doing everything short of slapping you in the head to tell you that you were falling for me. All it took was me taking a trip out of the country and no communication to make us both wake up and realize life is a whole lot better with us together verses apart.

When I look back I sometimes wonder how on earth two people so far from each other are brought together. I know with online dating and social networking sites have made finding love much easier, but as a girl that's dated guys she met online before, I can truly attest to the fact that it doesn't always work, regardless of whether you are looking on purpose or not, it doesn't always work out.  I was gun shy when I met you but I'm happy I took that chance, and look how far we've come.

Last night at dinner, as we stuffed our faces with great food and celebrated our big day, we discussed how it seems like only yesterday we were moving all my stuff into the amazing apartment downtown. How it felt like a tv show living there with our different neighbors. It was like Melrose Place but, without the murders or the drama. We had our friendly and silly landlord, a true Southern Lady who always welcomed us and chatted with us. Do you remember when she begged me to come watch American Idol with her? We had the quiet friendly couple that lived below us - we rarely heard a peep from them but they were always there to help us in case of a massive tornado warning and give us and our kitten, Angus shelter in a time of need. She was also the first one out the door when I fell down the icy steps and busted my tail bone that time - you of course were second but only able to stick your head out the door due to the fact that it was 7:45 AM and you were in your underwear. Note to self: never wear heels on an icy day ever again. Or what about our great neighbors that kept you company until I moved down - the couple that was always so friendly, inviting us to sit and have a few drinks with them and their lovable dog Fraiser. I'm so happy we ran into him recently and that he informed us that his wife had some tough battles with her health but that she is doing well. It's amazing how people waltz into your life, if only for a moment but still leave a mark on your heart. Then of course there were the not so pleasant neighbors but we were bound to have them. Our loud mouth annoying neighbor who didn't understand the concept of people having an early morning job - and then there was the hippie couple - I really wish her boyfriend realized how much his hair and jeans looked more like something she should wear not him. And then of course we had our local drug dealer, or at least what we thought he was doing, Mr. Sketchy across the way. We had our courtyard and our huge window over looking the downtown street below. I can't even remember how many parades we got to watch from that window in the comfort of our home with a beer in our hand - or a margarita depending on what we were celebrating. I remember all the great meals we made - when I learned to cook and could finally repay you for all the great meals you made when we first moved in together AND so that we could stop eating Hamburger Helper. I remember our lasagna nights and the nights we'd feed our friend's band before their gig. It was definitely the place to be and party. I miss that apartment and the downtown lifestyle - if it wasn't for the fact that we own so much stuff now I'd totally move back there in a heartbeat.

I really does seem like I've only blinked since we left there and moved into our first house. That place had so many plus and minuses - biggest minus was the location. Live and learn though. It's never comforting to be watching television at night and hear gun shots down the street, in the end though besides the location and the horrible utility bills I did love the inside of that house but when it's time to go, it's time to go.

Our second home was too adorable for words - a bit of a step down in the size department but the back deck made up for everything. It was like having an outdoor living room. Fully covered and screened in it was one of the best places in the house. Many nights were spent out there from hanging with friends, to watching football games to just relaxing on a Sunday afternoon - that deck saw it's share of good times. There are times that I miss that home, other than size it had everything going for it. After mom passed, and I inherited all her belongings we knew it was only a matter of time before we'd need a bigger home. We really do roam a lot don't we?

The current house we live in is yet another vessel to hold all our belongings and most importantly our memories. I can't believe how far we've come, and while saying six years sounds like a long time, it's been so much fun it's felt like it's been 6 minutes. Looking back on pictures I can see that we've grown. I don't feel old, or feel like we look old but I look back and I think - look how young we were. Even in our late 20's we still resemble young kinds - then again I guess you're only as old as you feel and you make me feel like I'm young as ever.

I wanted to take time to write this down to preserve our memories and to say to you Happy Anniversary. I love you more today than I did yesterday and I know I'll love you more tomorrow than I could have ever dreamed. We make an amazing team and there is no one else I'd rather spend my days with and my nights. Without you I know I wouldn't be has happy or as complete as I am right now. I'm so happy that I found you.

Next year, I promise not to forget our big day, if you do the same. You're right life really has been flying by and we've been so busy - I'm just really thankful that I wasn't the only one that missed the special day. Happy Anniversary! oxox

I love you, Mike.

love, k

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November 02, 2010

holy halloween hangover.

Where to begin... I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween weekend! Mine was filled to the brim with Halloween goodness, and maybe some badness as well.  Friday evening after work Mike and I opted for a chilled out night at home complete with pumpkin carving [me], scurry movie watching and some cocktails to round out our night. On the list for the evenings entertainment was...

via google   "Dead by Dawnnnn" 
[Bruce Campbell is one handsome man, possessed or not].

via google "Because real vampires don't sparkle."
[still my all time favorite horror-ish movie of all time]

And last but certainly not least....
via google   
"And it keeps getting funnier, every, single, time I see it!"

We've been watching horror movies most of the month of October when there was nothing else on TV. I think we watched most of the Halloween series in one sitting. As well as Rocky Horror Picture Show and a few others. It's obvious I love this time of year and I love most horror films so this has been a great month for me entertainment wise indeed. I would love to show you our finished pumpkins but apparently it's the one thing I forgot to take pictures of... sorry make that the second thing since I forgot to document, my first oops was my first Halloween costume I wore the previous weekend.

Saturday proved to be a busy day for us. We got up extra early and tried to get our "TO DO" list completed so we could relax or nap mid afternoon and then enjoy the evenings festivities. The list included final touches to our Halloween costumes - one of which we started from scratch that afternoon and finished completely and loved it! I was almost jealous of how well it came together for Mike. SO great!

Prepped and ready for a night of partying Mike and I stepped out in style as... 

Merlotte's Waitress aka The Fang Banger
I wish I had better images of my bite marks that were all over me, both sides of my neck, wrist and thigh all had marks on them, yeahhhh she gets around. 
Originally I wanted to tailor my look to be Amy, Stackhouse's girlfriend - complete with a blood covered body, but in the end I really loved the t-shirt and didn't want to ruin it. I look forward to wearing it on random days of the week now just for the fun of it.

And her date... 
Axl "Don't Call Me Brett Michaels Bitch" Rose
The best part about our costumes is that other than a few key items that we purchased the rest came from our own closets. Mike helped me make my Merlotte's t-shirt. I couldn't see spending $20 on a t-shirt even though I really wanted one when I knew that for the price of a $5.00 t-shirt and the cost of paying him to make it for me at work I could have one done for half price and with it exactly how I wanted it. The only "official" True Blood item I purchased was the apron. I even had Mike make me a Fangtasia button for my "flair". Most of Mike's gear came from his closet as well - he had to purchase the material to create his kilt and we purchased the red bandana and if you can believe it, I made his wig. It took me 2 hours to complete it but in the end it was PERFECT and way better than the $10.00 piece of crap we purchased at Target [which his brother, J.O. decided to use to go as Rick Flare from WWE - it was epic!]. I actually created Mike's Axl hair using tracks from the local Sally Beauty Supply, some thread, a needle and lots of hot glue and the bandana. He was so excited when he got to try it on and was floored it came together as well as it did. Yeah, I rocked it.
I wish I had a video camera for the moment we walked into our friend N & T's house fully dressed. They both freaked out and loved our costumes.
Our buds T & N
Otherwise known as 
Silk Spectre aka Sally Jupiter & Cowboy Green Lantern
 One more for good measure. I feel like this should have a 
WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE heading above it.
To say our evening was a great time would be a huge understatement. We went out to our local watering hole and had a blast seeing tons of great costumes and dear friends we haven't gotten to hang out with in a long time. Let's just say the drinks were flowing and by the end of the night I may have forgotten a few details along the way. Washington Apple shots are good, they're the devil but they are good. Thankfully we have great friends, and a designated driver to take us home and we slept safe in our beds unharmed. The next morning however is a different story... The WashingtonAppleRedBullVodkaWhiskeyDiet monster came back to haunt us both so our Halloween afternoon was spend relaxing, watching the Steelers vs. Saints game [if we had to lose to any team I'd say it was OK to lose to them... well played Saints], and finally got to watch The Walking Dead, it was awesomeeeeee! We washed the final hours of the weekend down with lots of H20 and some spicy, homemade Spicy Chicken Stew by Chef Mike.

I'm still trying to feel 100% - Monday was rough to say the least. Work has been stressful and not feeling fully ready to take on the work week after a long weekend is pretty tough on an old gal. Let's just say this weekend I will be taking it easy...And my liver is going to thank me. I'm getting too old for this shizz!

How was your Halloween?!?!?!?

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October 29, 2010

friday fixation: Tim Curry & Halloween

Today's Friday Fixation is brought to you by my obsession with Tim Curry and Halloween. Both are two things I can't get enough of. I'm going to make this short and sweet because I'm sure you all are getting your last minute things together for your Halloween Spooktaculars!

I truly, madly, deeply LOVE Tim Curry and whenever Halloween rolls around I can only think of two movies that get me giddy, unless you count all my favorite classic horror movies. Yes I can sit through marathons of Halloween and Friday the 13th and never get bored... Anycrazy... the two movies that make me giddy are The Worst Witch, a made for TV movie from the 80's, [have you seen it? It also stars a one young, Fairuza Balk yes, she's always been Craft-y! Find this movie and watch it now! DO IT!] AND the classic 1975 flick, The Rocky Horror Picture Show. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!

So my lovelies, I leave you with this moment in cinema magic starring Tim Curry and a bit of Spooky for Halloween. Also how many of you will be watching The Walking Dead series on AMC? I am SO excited I could fluff out twinkies!

Tim's snip from The Worst Witch - *heart sings*
[And YES this IS completely cheesy but utterly delightful!]

Often Imitated *coughGLEEcough* but NEVER duplicated
One of my all time favorite musicals - Rocky  Horror!!!!

via google

Did you hear they are planning a remake of this movie? I'm so pissed I could spit nails! Enough with the remakes already Hollywood!!!! Do you like remakes? I might have to discuss this further when I have more time!


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October 28, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake

As you may or may not know, I love pie. LOVE IT! A few posts ago I had mentioned that I made myself a Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake for breakfast and a few of you asked me for the recipe. One person in particular, Mrs. Magnolias and Mimosas herself, Allyson wanted me to post the recipe here. And since I love her like a sister from another mister, that I've never actually met in person - I will answer her request now.

I found the actual recipe I used here. Not only was I happy to be able to read all the ingredients but the lovely people over at (best weight loss tool ever!) also break down the nutritional information which is vital when you're in the weight loss game. Please note that for a protein shake this may seem fairly heavy in calories but this is my breakfast in the morning and other than maybe adding a bit of fruit with it, that's all I eat and it keeps me going until my mid morning snack. Not to mention it's portable and takes 5 minutes to make in the AM. I don't have time to make eggs and Oatmeal NEVER fills me up - this kills 2 birds with one stone. I get a full belly, fast and easy.

via google • nom-a-licious!

(Notes in orange are my additions/changes to this recipe)
1 cup Water (I sub in 1 cup skim milk, it makes the shake more creamy)
1 - 2 cup Ice (give or take depending on your desired thickness)
1/2 cup Libby's Canned Pumpkin (be sure you get pumpkin NOT pumpkin pie filling)
3 Tbsp. Genisoy Vanilla Soy Protein Shake Powder
(I used a scoop and a half of my favorite Vanilla Whey Protein Powder to get my normal serving of protein mixed with this shake)
1 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
1/4 tsp. Ground Cloves
Ground Nutmeg (to your liking)
3 Packets Equal Sweetener
1 tsp. Natural Peanut Butter (I add this for the extra flavor and I figured there is nothing "crust" flavored in this recipe. The peanut butter helps punch it up a notch in flavor).

This recipe makes 1 serving. (More like 1-1/2 when I make it, if you measure by my "to go" cups). Make it for a fast meal or a snack! Put all the ingredients into a blender and blend until ice is completely crushed and it looks like a smoothie. Use more or less water to suit your taste. Soy Milk or Skim Milk can be used in place of the water, but the nutritional values will not be the same and the calorie count will be higher.

Number of Servings: 1
Original Recipe: 183 calories

I am sure my version has more calories since I add in Milk, Peanut Butter and more protein powder but I am OK with that seeing as this is a breakfast MEAL for me and not a snack. If I was to make this as a snack I would follow the above recipe exactly to not risk making it more calories.

So there you have it - Pumpkin Pie Protein Shakes for all my fellow pumpkin lovers out there! Nothing will ever be a Mrs. Smith's Pumpkin Pie, but this is a good sub and a healthier way to enjoy without guilt!

If you enjoy Protein Shakes on the regular, what is your favorite recipe? I just found one for Egg Nog flavored shakes that I can't wait to try!!!
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October 26, 2010

1 party down: epic fail

I don't think I can ever recall a busier Halloween season for me. It's fair to assume that I wait until the last minute for everything and as I've said before my Halloween costumes are no different. This year however I was ahead of the curve which rocked... then it hit me, after finding out we were invited to not one but two different Halloween events, I'd probably have to wear my gear twice. I wasn't opposed to that at all but then it happened.... Yep, good ole' mother nature reared her annoying ass head and my choice costume was rendered slightly useless. Ok less useless and more along the lines of seriously uncomfortable and unflattering to the millionth power. THANKS AUNT FLO!

Enter brainstorming freak out... Friday afternoon at work I devised a plan to pull together a costume on Saturday morning for the Saturday night party. After google searching for what seemed like forever and racking my brain I came up with this....

via google • "Time to nut up or shut up!"

Yes! That is Emma Stone, aka Wichita from Zombieland. I love this movie and figured she would be just the right bit of tough and sexy for me without being inappropriate! Shopping was simple. I already had the boots and the skinny jeans, all I needed was the slouchy white tshirt, leather jacket and a shot gun. Easy right? Actually it was so simple I was shocked. Thankfully everything I purchased was bought in person and was right there on hand for me.

via target

Truth be told I really just needed and excuse to purchase a new jacket. And I love this one the faux leather is so soft and animal cruelty free. Win/Win! I was also able to find a soft, barely there white t-shirt to sport for under $9.99 which rocked!

(extra points if you tell me what that's from)
SmokN'Barrel Toy Shot Gun • via amazon

Sometimes Wally World comes through for me - and in this case they did in a big way. Did you know that Target doesn't sell toy guns unless they are Nerf or don't look anything like a real gun. I can respect that but come halloween time you sort of need that type of thing. One stop shopping would have been awesome but I scored this toy gun [read: one very similar covered in hot orange colors] for $10.00! The awesome part was it makes shooting noises and if you are willing to fill it with batteries it also blows smoke AND empties out shot gun shells when you open it. Did I feel like doing this? NO, and you'll see why.
via google

Here's where the costume got more crafty and less store bought. I wasn't about to walk around with a hot hunter orange and cream colored gun. Nothing says ZOMBIE KILLER like a Creamcicle colored fire arm! I went ahead and purchased some Flat Black spray paint and spent my afternoon huffing creating my zombie slaying masterpiece. 

bottom quad is what I used • via cover girl

Finishing touches... a compact of dark eye shadow and a cheap eyeliner pencil in midnight black and I pretty much had Wichita nailed. (I've mentioned this before I am HORRIBLE and so challenged when it comes to make-up application - in the end I was happy but it was a far cry from what I wanted it to look like, seriously an 11 year old could do better!)

via hot topic • I didn't use THIS kit but these kits ROCK!
No mess and super easy to remove.

Add to that a few "zombie bite" and "blood drip" temporary tattoos and I was ready to rock the evening. {I know that Wichita was never actually BIT but I thought it would be a fun touch and at the least people might know I'm a Zombie Hunter}. 

Thankfully accessories were not an issue, she doesn't wear any - I sported some modest hoops in my ears just because I feel naked without earrings but otherwise I was simple and hoped rocking the Zombieland look to a T. The only extra thing I considered adding but didn't was chopping off my bangs. I seriously thought about it but couldn't find my hair shears. In the end I'm glad I didn't - Mike shaved off his beard for his costume and was immediately regretting the choice the next morning.

I guess you're wondering where the EPIC FAIL came in aren't you? Well first off NO ONE at the party had any clue who I was...For real??? Secondly... I totally forgot to take pictures!!! Let's just say some Hunch Punch was served at the party and our host with the most "MR. Paula Deen" had me in stitches and I sort of forgot about photographic evidence. So my Wichita costume and Mike's Frank the Tank get up may have to just live in our memories instead of film or digital images, and for that I am sorry.

If I do decided to revisit Wichita weekend I promise to take pictures... but after leaving the party we went to the bar and it was WAY too warm in there with my jacket on. I dealt with it due to "bloat" but if I'm feeling less um... menstral by this weekend it might not be an issue.

Have you all been to any great parties yet?!?!? Did people know who you were dressed as?
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October 21, 2010

a day of nostalgia

Every once in a while I get completely nostalgic. When this happens I tend to think about days when I was younger, when life was simple and things were always OK so long as you got tucked in at night. Maybe it's due to the fact that PMS is rearing it's ugly head, or maybe it's just all the fond memories I have of growing up and this time of year when the holidays are growing closer  - whatever it is I've been in the mood to flood these nostalgic thoughts with comfort. They say the best trigger for memories is your sense of smell and I couldn't agree with this more.

Last night I took a chance and grabbed myself a huge tub of Noxzema. My skin has been less than attractive lately and with all the different lotions and potions a girl could go broke. I used this stuff every, single, day when I was growing up and I always had the best skin. Granted I'm not longer the 12 year old that I once was and my skin certainly doesn't have that youthful glow of 14, but at first whiff of the container I was transported back to my childhood home and the thoughts of using the amazing eucalyptus scented face wash.

I have to say I really like the label redo it made me feel a bit less "old fashioned" purchasing a soap I used when I was a teen. Like I said I had great skin as a teenager. I get more zits now than I did back then. This my be due to the fact that I wear more make-up now, I was bare faced through most of my pre-teen and teen years, or it could just be age, I'm not sure. Either way I scrubbed my face with this magic scrub this morning and my day instantly felt brighter than the others this week. Fingers crossed this will do the trick for my skin. I've tried a ton of different things and nothing seems to work for me lately. I'm over buying cover-up in bulk.

Anypizzaface, for the past few weeks I've been trying to stop myself from purchasing more shampoo. I tend to over buy in this department and have told myself I need to finish and entire bottle before purchasing more conditioner and shampoo. Our shower seriously can't hold that many products, mine greatly out weight Mike's. I hate that he's able to condense his shampoo, condition and body wash into ONE single product! My hair would NEVER have that. I say I've been trying to stop myself from purchasing new shampoo because the other week when browsing through the drug store I came across a product that I thought for sure no longer existed. It hadn't dawned on me to look for this shampoo line in ages because I haven't used it since I was in high school.

via finesse

Like the tagline implies Finesse got a make-over with a new look. The store I was in had the shampoo on sale in a huge display but I told myself not to spend the money. That doesn't mean I couldn't enjoy it for what I truly wanted it for right then and there - and that was the scent. I opened a bottle and took a huge sniff and immediately I was transported back to summers spent with my family in North Carolina on the shore. I used this shampoo day in and day out and loved every time I used it. It also made me recall the times I'd get sunburned and use the Noxzema to cure the burn. I will warn you though that while it makes the pain go away... a day to two days later you will be peeling wherever you put the Noxzema, your face, your arms, your legs everywhere - it sucks so I wouldn't recommend it. Get yourself some aloe instead. Finesse was always my go to hair line. I had long, huge, naturally (I wish, read: permed to death) curly hair. The entire line tamed my mane from the soft touch hair spray to the soft feel gel my hair was fabulous. I wonder if it would still do the trick on my now naturally wavy (and I do mean natural, I have no idea where it came from) hair.

Since I've been feeling particularly nostalgic and maybe a bit homesick in the past few days I thought it was time for some good old fashioned comfort food. I'm currently between workout dvds (ordering my next set today) and while I could consider this a cheat meal I really wanted to just have something that reminded me of home without busting my pants wide open or blowing my hard work.

As a kid my mother always made the best dinners. Some from scratch some from the can and some from the box.

Jiffy Muffins have always been and always will be my favorite all time box mix Blueberry Muffins! My mother made them often and it wasn't until I moved to Alabama, lived on my own and started cooking that I realized how much I missed eating these. I haven't made them often because I can polish off an entire box all by myself but in making my choice to have a comfort food meal, I knew these had to be a back up to my main course.

It's not often that I crave fried chicken... but I have been for a few days now.  And when I get something like that in my brain, I can't shake it until I eat the food I want. Instead of trying to fry it up, which I've done before, got great results and then immediately felt guilty for making and eating it... I decided I would try one of the many oven baked recipes I've seen all over the place. I decided to go with my trusted and true Paula Deen for her Oven Fried Chicken recipe.

via google • I love this woman!

I mean really other than 500 lbs. of butter how can you ever say Mrs. Deen is wrong? When I was younger my mother always made fried chicken wings, naked and fried until super crispy in her skillet, most likely with tons of butter, but they were AWESOME! We always had blue berry muffins with this meal so its a win/win for me. I figured to feel less guilty about my meal I'm preparing I will add in some fresh steamed veggies on the side and call it a night.

Add to the comfort food dinner some great Thursday night entertainment and a warm blanket for the couch and I'm good to go! I could go on and on about all the things that make me feel warm and fuzzy, comforted and nostalgic but I am wondering from all of you...

When you feel like you need a little comfort - what does the trick for you? What is your favorite comfort food, or favorite comforting smell?

P.S. I made myself a Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake for breakfast today and it was heavenly! I will share the recipe soon! In even better Pumpkin Obsession news Wally World FINALLY got on the ball and I was able to purchase my Pumpkin Spice Creamer yesterday! The best part is I brought it to work to ensure I wouldn't drink the entire bottle alone. I have my every changing and shrinking figure to worry about here people I'm not crazy!

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October 18, 2010

Tailgate Recipes: Sausage Pizza Dip

I'm happy I finally got my act together enough to share some Tailgate Recipes with you at least before the season is over! Sure I've been way behind but I'm trying to change that. I figured it would be a smart move for me to share my recipes with you on say Tuesday {this week will be a Monday edition} so that you've have time to plan your meal and get the ingredients together if you wanted to make these for the game of your choice the upcoming weekend. 

I made this week's recipe this past weekend. I thought I should taste test and road test any of the recipes I pass on to you this season so that I know if they are good. It would be really irresponsible of me to pass one on to you having not tired it.

We were supposed to have a few friends over for the game so instead of making one dip, I made two. The first dip was one I shared with you last year and one that all my friends always beg me to make, and that's my Buffalo Chicken Dip. You all know my obsession with Buffalo Sauce, if it wouldn't burn so bad I'd probably freebase that stuff. Addicted what? Call Dr. Drew. 

The second dip I made was a great recipe I found on Everyday with Rachel Ray. I didn't know if I would like the recipe but I was told by a dear old myspace buddy last year that I had to try it that it would blow my mind. And secondly, of all the different Rachel Ray recipes I've made, which is a lot (she taught me how to cook) I've only ever hated one, so I'd say her record is pretty awesome. Sure it only took me about a year to try this recipe, but let's be honest I'm a bit late at everything, *coughtruebloodcough* and I'll probably be late to my own funeral.

Let's just say that the Iron Maiden {my myspace buddy's handle} was correct. This dip is absolutely knock your socks off amazing, and easy as hell to create. It's called Sausage Pizza Dip and I got the recipe from here.

Photo Credit to Kang Kim via Everyday with Rachel Ray

Please see recipe information from link marked *here* above. I added my own touches and made some changes as well. Instead of Tomato Sauce I used 1 cup of my favorite Newman's Own Marinara Sauce. Eventually I will learn to make my own sauce but this does in a pinch for me all the time - it's also great for pizza sauce as well in my opinion.
via google • This stuff is SO good!

AFTER THOUGHT ADDITION: Next time I make this recipe I would like to try to rub all the bread with down, hot out of the oven with a fresh garlic clove for an extra kick. It would also be great if you sprinkled garlic powder on the bread but I really love the bite of fresh garlic so it's a winner for me.

TAILGATE APPROVED: If you are going to do this for an actual tailgate in a parking lot, before a big game, one where you have limited access to an oven, but have electricity... instead of broiling this at the end I would recommend cooking your sausage ahead of time and adding all the ingredients together in a crock pot. Melt together until combined and dish out with a spoon onto a plate and serve with bread.

FUN ADDITIONS: After discussing with my guests about what might improve this we really didn't have much to add but my thoughts were possibly adding some pepperoni roughly chopped or on top while it bakes would be a great add on, just like pizza. If you have friends that like red onions I think that would be a great addition also to let them cook under the broiler and get nice and sweet. I also thought that a healthy addition might be cutting up green peppers for dippers instead of the bread or using pretzels or bread sticks might be a fun idea as well.

SKINNY IT UP: I never really love reduced fat cheese when it comes to melting or dips but I do think this would taste just as delicious with reduced fat cream cheese as well as the others and even as great with turkey sausage or chicken sausage. That being said I feel that everything is all in moderation. 

PERFECT BEVERAGE: Beer... hands down. I don't think anything fruity would go well with this at all.

FINAL VERDICT: My guests loved this and while I only ended up having three people over instead of the 8 that we originally expected, the left overs from this dip were just as great reheated the next day for lunch. That being said... if you're dieting or eating clean... send your guests home with this so you won't be tempted to stuff your face later, seriously, it's really hard to resist seconds the day of, let alone left overs the day after.

P.S. Buffalo Dip Addition - I have discovered that Chicken in a Biscuit Crackers are amazing with the Buffalo Chicken Dip! Last year when I made this for Mike's family and added the crackers as a dipper (Iron Bowl Game 2009) everyone raved about them. They are absolutely amazing alone but the buffalo sauce is a great kick with all the cheese.

"So good it'll make you wanna slap yo Mama!" • via google

P.S.S. If you're on a diet or watching what you eat I apologize in advance for this post. I promise to at least have a few healthier options to add to these in the future. And for the record, I did want to have veggies on a platter for people to eat, but the person in charge of veggies was not able to come over so it was total carb overload central!

P.S.S.S. Yes...  I know this isn't P90X approved but honestly it was a cheat day so get off my back! And by the way I'm finished with the X and I will write about it this week!

Needless to say - both of my teams won this weekend and I couldn't have been happier!!! RTR & GO STEELERS!

I hope you all are ready for this weekend's big games!!! I know it's only Monday but it will give us something to look forward too! And If you're a Titans or Jaguar fan you have a big game to watch tonight sooo, LET'S GET THIS PARTY STARTED!

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