Catching Up On “Me Time”

I know, I know.. I’ve been MIA for almost a month now. It was much easier to attempt to update this during the winter when I didn’t have quite as much going on. But I’ve been doing SO much for work recently and I’ve been trying to stay outside as much as possible with the dogs on nice days. So my dear sweet blog has been neglected.. which I kind of knew it would. Hopefully I can get myself together and motivated and actually make this blog something real, but it’s been so hard lately!

So this update is going to be a random collection of what’s been going on in my life lately..

1.) My hubby’s aunt has a habit of collecting random items.. and happened to have a very old, very large pool table in her basement. It’s a Brunswick, which is supposedly a really good brand. Needless to say, we have since become the new owners of this pool table and have been working on fixing it up for the last week or so.  We’ve finally cleaned and painted everything, now we just need to wait for the billiards place to finish everything else and come back to put it together! And yes, it’s going in our garage. We both have SUVs and they won’t fit in there together, so we decided to just stop using it as a garage and turn it in a mancave/bar for my hubby. He’s SUPER excited.

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In his aunt’s basement.

 

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All taken apart, ready to be painted.

2.) I’ve been attempting to eat healthier. If you know me, you know I eat junk food and fried foods like there’s no tomorrow. So I’ve decided to try one new vegetable a week! So far I’ve discovered brussel sprouts, chick peas, and kale.  I can officially say I’m obsessed with brussel sprouts! Sauteed in a littleeee butter and lots of lemon pepper, yum yummmm.

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3.) April Beauty Boxes! I didn’t take pictures of my Birchbox, so we’ll just have to wait for my May box. I’m going to wait until the Nail Files Friday for my Julep box. So that leaves me with.. Ipsy! April’s box had a pink theme to it. Pink bag, pink blush, pink eyeshadow, pink nail polish.. and then a non-pink hair product. I plan on trying the hair product tomorrow. I’m not a huge fan of pink eyeshadow, but the colors were pretty. Anddd I love the blush, it gives me such a pretty rosy glow 🙂 and while I haven’t used the polish yet, I love the color. As always, I’m not super in loveee with my Ipsy items, but I was definitely happy with the contents.

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It all came in pretty boxes too!

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Inside the bag.

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4.) I received my first BzzKit! I’m going to make a separate post to give my actual review of it.. but I was super excited to receive my first box in the mail! Who doesn’t love receiving free items?!

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5.) As you may know, I’m a nurse on a renal unit. Well, one of my coworkers discovered these awesome pins for our badges and she ordered a whole bunch of them so we can all have one. How cute is this little guy?! This company is super awesome and has pins of almost ANY organ. All nurses should seriously check it out 🙂

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The little kidney is the actual pin.

 

Well, that was random but my doggies are cuddling and I need to start the laundry. Until later!

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Recipe: Braided Spaghetti Bread

I actually mentioned this recipe 2 months ago (see the post here) and I JUST now got around to trying it over the weekend.

Braided Spaghetti Bread

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The hubby and I were both SO excited about this recipe. Let’s be honest here, the idea of it sounds amazing! I didn’t really alter it too much – I just made my own spaghetti sauce and added ground beef. Unfortunately, the hubby and I were both mildly disappointed. It was good, especially dipped in extra meat sauce, but it wasn’t amazing. There was just too much BREAD flavor. I brushed the top with butter and then added garlic powder and Parmesan cheese, but it still just tasted like bread.

Overall, I would say it was good.. but I’d rather just make baked spaghetti. The time and effort that went into this meal was more of a pain in a butt than anything.

Another Pinterest recipe that I tried.. Loaded Baked Potato and Chicken Casserole. And (not so) surprisingly, I forgot to take a picture of it. It actually looked so pretty too! Now this recipe was definitely a winner! I loved it, especially with some sour cream on the side. Yummmyyyy. Although, I did cook the chicken prior to putting it in the oven – the idea of putting raw chicken on top of cooked potatoes kind of grossed me out.

What did you find on Pinterest this week?

What I’m Doing Wednesday #4

Oh crap, it’s been a WHOLE WEEK since I updated last?! And I’ve actually been off work for over a week too.. so no excuses! EXCEPT I kind of have an excuse, because I finally painted another room in our house! The master bathroom is now a gorgeous burnt orange from Sherwin Williams called Pennywise 🙂 Go me! Unfortunately, now I really, really want to get new flooring and a new vanity put in there.. oh how I wish we could win the lottery and support my redecorating desires!

Okay, whining done… time for another edition of What I’m Doing Wednesday!

What I’m Wearing

Linking up with The Pleated Poppy and Life as Mrs. Burnett for What I Wore Wednesday!

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Flats – Guess (purchased from Macy’s), Shirts – Aeropostale
#oldclothes #perkypony #ithinkimcute

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I just liked this one, so I’m adding it.

So this is actually yesterday’s outfit. I’m returning to work tonight and currently in scrubs, so I figured that wouldn’t be very interesting! Unfortunately, this outfit isn’t very interesting either.. considering all I was doing was going grocery shopping. I think I look kind of cute though?

What I’m Obsessed With

Seriously.. MANGO SALSA. Oh my goodness, first of all (confession time).. I have a total love affair with cilantro. I mean, full on obsession. So this mango salsa was SUPER yummy and it was the perfect addition to this Jamaican Jerk Pork  🙂 I actually made a pork loin in the oven instead of the slow cooker pulled pork, but it was so, so good. It’s from this awesome website called Skinny Taste that has TONS of delicious and healthy meals.

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Not gonna lie, I ate it by the spoonful.

What I Bought

A Himalayan Salt Block! I actually bought this 2 weeks ago for my mom’s birthday but she just got it in the mail last week and finally got to use it this weekend. You can read more about them on this website (which is also where I purchased them).

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Picture courtesy of my mom.

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Picture courtesy of my mom.

What I Pinned – And Did!

I made THE CUTEST makeup brush holder based off a pin I saw on Pinterest! My hubby bought me these awesome makeup brushes for Christmas, but it was always such a hassle to use them because they were being stored under the sink. Now they have an adorable display right on the counter which makes them super easy to find and use! Once we figure out an actual decor for our bathroom, I might try to make a little canister with an actual design/pattern on the outside. But for right now, I seriously love this! More ideas can be found here.

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((Vase – $2 from Michael’s, Stones – $5 Target))

What are YOU doing today? Feel free to link up!

What I’m Doing Wednesday #3

Welcome to yet another installment of What I’m Doing Wednesday!

What I’m Wearing

Linking up with The Pleated Poppy and Life as Mrs. Burnett for What I Wore Wednesday!

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I honestly have no idea where I got half my clothes from (how do people remember every single item?!) but I somehow remember everything about this outfit except for the jeans.

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((Striped shirt – Macy’s, Cami – Aeropostale, Boots – Ninewest, Necklace – Body Central))

What I’m Reading

I’m STILL working on reading the entire Gossip Girl series. I’m currently on book #10 – “Would I Lie To You.”  I LOVED the TV series so much, it’s just killing me to keep reading this when it’s almost nothing like the show. I guess I should’ve realized this beforehand. BUT I’m going to keep reading it because that’s just how I am.

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What Makes Me Go “Awwww”

Okay, so this is a completely random category but seriously, look at this picture of my babies! SO CUTE!!

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Snoozing in the same crate!

What I Made For Supper

Tonight I tried a new recipe – Chicken, Chorizo and Tortilla Soup by Rachael Ray. It was definitely a winner! Although, I made a few changes —  (1.) I used shredded chicken instead of bite sized pieces. (2.) I didn’t add the hot sauce because I wasn’t sure how hot the chorizo would be. I think it was the perfect heat level without it, but everyone’s different! (3.) I accidentally bought chicken broth, instead of chicken stock, so it needed a little extra flavoring. I just added half a packet of taco seasoning. (4.) Next time I won’t use the potatoes, I don’t feel like they were really necessary. Seriously, try this recipe!! So good!

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It looks pretty too!

What I’m Baking

My mom bought me a mini donut maker for my birthday on Monday (yeah, she’s awesome like that) and I used it for the first time today! I didn’t feel like going to the store to buy anything fancy so I just made the basic donut batter and used granulated sugar and powdered sugar as the toppings. I’d say I did pretty good for my first try!

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What I’m Laughing At

I’m laughing at myself today! Have you ever seen pictures of perfectly vacuumed carpets with perfect, symmetrical vacuum lines?

Well, I vacuumed and shampooed my bedroom carpet earlier in the week. No, a blind and drunk person did not do that. I don’t even know how it got that way! I don’t remember walking in any circles, but apparently I did.

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Doggy footprints everywhere!

 

What are YOU doing today? Feel free to link up!

It’s Friday, Friday

Gotta get down on Friday
Everybody’s lookin’ forward to the weekend, weekend
Friday, Friday
Gotta get down on Fridayyyy

And thank you Rebecca Black for this song! 😉

 

Ok, I’m truly sorry for getting that stuck in everyone’s head, but for some reason it’s in mine today and it’s driving me CRAZY. I know I’ve been MIA recently. I’ve just had one of those weeks (ok, two weeks). Work has been insane, the weather has been off and on miserable, it’s been cold, blehh. I just can’t seem to get myself together and my days have consisted of watching DVR’d shows.. and not cleaning my house. Which is what I’m supposed to be doing right now.. but I wanted to take a minute to chat with all my lovely readers 🙂

A few weeks ago I made a post about my Top 10 Favorite Reality TV Shows, you can check that here. But today I’m going to make a post about some of my favorite recipes that I’ve discovered on Pinterest. I’m not sure if I’ll come up with 10, but we’ll see what happens!

I’m sure it’s the same for every household – with or without kids – we have the same meals almost every week. It gets SO boring and I’ve been trying so hard to find yummy meals that don’t take forever to make. I haven’t exactly been making sure they’re super healthy, but maybe that’ll be my next challenge? And so.. some of my favorite Pinterest meals!

1.  Chicken and Mushrooms in a White Wine Sauce – Mine never looks like the picture does and I don’t like mushrooms, but I still love this recipe. It’s quick and yummy and the sauce is sooo good.  Recipe here.

2.  Pork Tenderloin with Pan Sauce – I can’t seem to successfully cook pork chops, but I’m getting super good at making pork loins. This says to cook for 30-40 minutes, but just keep an eye on it while it’s cooking to make sure it’s actually done before you serve it (yes, I learned this the hard way). Recipe here.

3.  Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Soup – I seriously LOVE this. My hubby isn’t a huge fan of having soup for supper, but I seriously love this soup. Oh my goodness. Now that I’m thinking about it, I think I want to make it this weekend! Recipe here.

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This is actually my picture!

4.  Bacon Cheeseburger Macaroni – I made this for the first time last week and it was a huge hit. The hubby ate like 4 servings of it that night and then for breakfast and then for lunch the next day. I added lots of extra bacon and cheese, yummy. Recipe here.

5.  Twice Baked Potato and Ground Beef Pie – I guess this is a rendition of Shepherd’s Pie? I was a little hesitant about this one, but it was seriously awesome. (Side note – I browned the beef before putting it in the oven. Putting in raw beef kind of grossed me out.) Recipe here.

Well, I’m only going to do 5 recipes because I seriously need to get going and start cleaning, but here’s a few recipes I found that I’m dying to try!

1.  Loaded Baked Potato and Chicken Casserole – Recipe here.

2.  Braided Spaghetti Bread – Recipe here.

Seriously though, do they look AMAZING or what?!

What awesome recipes have YOU found on Pinterest?

30 Day “What If” Challenge – Day 10

30 Day “What If” Challenge

Day 10 :  What if you could have only one food for the rest of your life (assuming that this would not affect your health), which food would you choose?

Ahhh, this one is so difficult! I actually have this really bad habit of becoming “addicted” to certain foods. I’ll eat something nonstop for days.. and then I get really, really sick of whatever it is. Like to the point of I won’t eat it again for a really long time. So this is a terrible question for me! Could we maybe do a food group? Because I feel like I could probably eat soup every day for the rest of my life. Or quesadillas. Or actually, just Mexican food! Yumm.

If I had to pick.. maybe.. really, really good.. fresh cut.. FRENCH FRIES. With vinegar.

What would you pick if you had to choose?

Monday Already?

Well, I didn’t update yesterday for two reasons..

1. I was lazy.

2. Date night with the hubby!

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#BCBG #orange #isthenewpink

So with that being said, I ran 800 errands today and decided to make fajitas for supper. Fajitas are definitely a favorite in our household – and they’re super, super easy to make.

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Chicken, onions and peppers for the main stuff.
Tomatoes and cilantro for pico de gallo.

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These tortilla strips are #thebomb.

And then the most important part – THE SAUCE. This stuff is seriously amazing! I always make sure to shake it up really well, because all the seasoning is at the bottom of the packet so you gotta make sure you scoop all the good stuff out.

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Oh, heavenly sauce.

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NOMS!

Lastly – the pico de gallo! I’ve pretty much perfected my recipe, but I don’t really have measurements for the ingredients because you just add everything to taste. Diced tomatoes, garlic (minced really, really small), cilantro, salt, pepper, and lime juice. You could also just add garlic powder if you don’t have fresh garlic. And then let it sit in the fridge for about 15 minutes. (I prefer mine to be cold – for the contrast in temperature – so I always make sure my tomatoes are in the fridge for awhile before I even make it).

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Yummy, yummy pico.

((I forgot to take a picture of the completed meal because it smelled so, so good and I couldn’t wait to eat!))

In other awesome news – I received my January Birchbox today!

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Face cream x2, shampoo, perfume, highlighter/blush in one, and lash lengthening serum – all for $10!

30 Day “What If” Challenge – Day 8

Day 8 : What if you could choose how you were going to die, what would you choose your death to be?

Well, honestly, I think this question is kind of silly. Would anyone really want to die a painful death? Hopefully I have many, many, MANY more years left, but if I had to choose, I guess I’d just choose to die in my sleep. Peacefully, without pain. Simple enough.

What would you choose?

Oh, What A New Year

Oh gracious. I promise I’m not neglecting you my faithful readers (there has to be some of you.. right?!). I wish I had more time to update, but I’ve been way too busy being sick (I think I’m finally better now), working, and cleaning like a crazy person because I was preparing for my mom’s arrival. She arrived on Thursday and is staying until the 10th so I can’t guarantee a ton of updates this week.. sorry!

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She really, really wanted a sign.

We had a billion days of rain last week so on Saturday when I took the dogs out after working all night.. my precious little Roxie decided to lay on her belly and pull herself through piles of mud. Yep, through the mud. She was quite pleased with herself.. until she realized that it meant I would be giving her a bubbly bath. At 8am. After I worked 12 hours. UGH! But look how cute she is 🙂

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Muddy feet.

I’m working on organizing my life and my first project was using my awesome new makeup organizer that I talked about here and that you can purchase here. I seriously love it! It’s meant to be placed on top of the counter, but I have a serious issue with things cluttering my counters.. so I made room for it under my cabinet and it’s beautiful! I seriously love using it and now I need to go out and buy more makeup because the whole back half of it is literally empty.

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Perfection!

Today is Playoff Sunday.. let’s go Redskins! My mom and I made a feast with tons of yummy foods and most importantly, we made Cranberry Pomegranate Sangria! You can find the awesome recipe here which I found on Pinterest, of course. It’s seriously amazing. Unfortunately, the Redskins appear to be losing and will most likely have lost by the time I end up publishing this. My dear hubby is not very happy.

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Pot ‘o Sangria.

So I guess I’m going to finish this update with my New Year’s Resolutions.

1. To become a better, more successful blogger. I want to become more involved in the awesome WordPress blogging community and participate in daily activities. Or maybe even make my own daily activities/topics to blog about! I have a seriously hard time updating when I have to work, so I can’t promise daily updates, but I hope to update at least 3 times a week. One of my favorite things is “It’s OK Thursday” by an old coworker of mine. You can read her blog here.

2. To become more involved at work. I’ve already begun working on this goal, go me!! I’ve been working as a floor nurse for 3 1/2 years now and I feel like it’s time to start working on my career. I’ve agreed to be a preceptor to a senior nursing student for an entire semester (which should be starting in the next few weeks). I’ve agreed to take a charge nurse class. I signed up for an ACLS class. I’ve signed up to be on a committee to help educate other nurses on new nursing skills. I feel like I’m heading in the right direction, especially because education is something else I’m very passionate about.

3. To become more organized in my life. Pinterest exists for a reason!! I’ve pinned a billion different ways to clean and organize my life.. now it’s time I get started! I’ve already begun working on this goal. Go me! My next task is figuring out how to make my closet a little less chaotic.. at least until we can have someone come in and customize/rebuild my walk-in closet for me. I also hope to FINALLY paint some more rooms in this big ol’ house. I’ve only succeeded in painting the living room, the downstairs half bath, and the upstairs guest bathroom.. and we’ve lived here since May!

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I have way too many beauty products.

I think I’ll just leave it at that for now. Wish me luck!

And now something to make you giggle.. that I found on Pinterest.. of course.

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Sometimes You Just Need To Be Random

Well, it’s been quite a busy few days for me so this update is going to be quite random.  There’s so much I want to share! First, the bake sale was a huge success at work – we made almost $300! Go us!

Earlier in the week I had my performance evaluation with the director of my floor – all good reviews, a 2% raise (not much, but eh), signed up for an ACLS class, agreed to start training for charge nurse AND I agreed to be a preceptor to a senior nursing student for a whole semester starting in a few weeks. 2013 is sounding like it’s going to be awesome!

Then I forgot to share a recipe for a super delicious slow cooker chicken taco soup that I made last week. Surprisingly, this recipe did NOT come from Pinterest. I know, I know.. recipes from other websites?! How old fashioned of me! But seriously, I didn’t really change this recipe at all – I just used an extra can of black beans and I used a can of chicken broth instead of beer because we didn’t have any in the fridge. And it was SO SO SO GOOD! I added tons of cilantro because I’m obsessed and it was amazing. It didn’t even need sour cream or cheese but that’s up to you.

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NOMS!!

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This is what I added on top.. Sooo yummy. Try them with fajitas too!

Friday night at work was TERRIBLE so I went out for some early morning drinks and breakfast with one of my coworkers (when you work night shift, it’s totally acceptable to drink alcohol at 8am – right?). There’s not really a story here, I just wanted to show some pictures of FALSE ADVERTISING and everyone can realize how upset I was when I paid $7 for this piece of cheesecake that was not at all what I was expecting.

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This is what I thought I was ordering..

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This is what I got.. uh.. no.

Saturday night I went out with some friends – which resulted in me being hungover all day Sunday. Which resulted in me not cooking, cleaning, doing laundry or grocery shopping like I was supposed to. Bad decision making skills. Ugh. When will I ever realize I can’t party like I’m 21 anymore?

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All cute and ready to go!

And then last and most importantly, Sunday was my Princess Roxie’s 3rd birthday! I can’t believe how big she’s gotten! When I think about when we brought home this cute little 2 1/2 pound black and white ball of fur.. I can’t believe it’s the same dog that we have right now!

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Surprise presents!

Anyway, that’s it for now. Talk about being random and babbling nonsense – but that’s the way my life is so I feel like it’s only appropriate to update in the same manner. Happy Monday everyone!

How I Discovered Wax Paper Is Not The Same As Parchment Paper

While as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, my work is having a bake sale today for the National Kidney Foundation – I work on a renal floor, so yeah. I found this recipe on Pinterest for cookies with chocolate chips, peanut butter chips and pretzels – and it looked awesome!

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Mine did not look like this.

Now as I also mentioned, I’ve been fighting off an annoying cold for almost 2 weeks now and my mind has been a little bit scattered. So my baking adventure yesterday started off a little bit shaky when I realized I didn’t have baking soda – I only had baking powder. Thanks to Google, I managed to solve that problem. After I got my cookies in the oven, I started working on yesterday’s post when I realized I smelled something burning.. and when I went to check on my cookies, I realized smoke was rapidly filling up inside my oven!!

APPARENTLY wax paper is not the same as parchment paper. I have no idea how I’ve never discovered this before. I’m not even sure why I have wax paper if it can’t be put in the oven?? But thank goodness it didn’t actually catch on fire – which is what terrified me because I was home alone and scared of disaster – but it seriously almost made my whole downstairs fill up with smoke. Obviously I didn’t think to take a picture, but use your imagination.

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Anyway, the cookies managed to turn out awesome! They don’t look as perfect as the cookies from the original website (and I’m definitely not a professional food photographer!), but my dear hubby said they tasted super yummy!

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My little sidekick in the background.

Thanks again to Pinterest for yet another winning recipe!