Hey guys! I hope you had a great weekend. Ours was SUPER packed and I'm still recovering from it. We got to hang out with 3 different couples that we love to see and we celebrated my dad's bday last night. Instead of a weekend recap, I thought I'd post of things I found on Pinterest that I absolutely love. These few pictures are so sweet and inspirational. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do! Click on the pictures to visit the site where the pins were originally found.
Today is my dad's birthday! I hope he has a wonderful birthday (even though it's Friday the 13th...) and can find a little time to do something for himself today. Unfortunately, he will be working late tonight so we won't get to celebrate till later but I want to give him a shout out. Dad, I love you very much and I appreciate all you have done and all you have sacrificed to give me a wonderful life. Thanks for being there for me and supporting me through the good and the bad. Here is to many more birthdays!
Today I am thankful for Max's birthday. He is one year old today and I'm thankful that we have him in our family and that he is growing into such a good dog. We still have a year or so to go to deal with some of his puppy traits (like getting bored and wanting to play with things he shouldn't play with) but he's becoming so well-behaved and protective. Just what we wanted him for. Not to mention, he gives us so many laughs and is great to snuggle with! The pic to the left was taking on Christmas morning. He got to hang out with me on the bed for a bit :)
I'm thankful that the Texans are still in the playoffs this weekend. I'm not a huge NFL fan but Husband is and he's pumped to cheer on the Texans this Sunday. I'm glad he gets to watch his team play this weekend and I hope they win on Sunday!
I'm thankful for my ridiculous cat, Meg. Last night I was laying on the floor with my heating pad on to try to work out some of the tightness in my back. I got up to feed the dogs and came back to this hilarious sight. Meg had discovered the heating pad and passed out on it. I got more pictures of her curled up on the entire pad but this one shows off how funny she is.
Two very close friends of mine, Kim and Cate, are in the homestretch of their pregnancies. Both are under 100 days of their due dates and I couldn't be more excited to meet Baby Kash (hopefully the end of February!) and Baby Claire (due in April). Since we aren't ready to have kids yet, I love being able to share the experiences of my friends who are expecting. I'm thankful that I can be a part of their lives while they go through such an exciting time!
Happy Wednesday! Today's recipe is a crock pot meal I made for dinner last night. I experimented with things I had on hand and it turned out really well! Hope you enjoy!
Tender Roast Crock Pot Meal with Roasted Garlic and Parmesan Flavoring
Prepare the night before and then throw everything in the crock pot in the morning.
1.5 lbs of tender roast
5 Idaho potatoes
1 bag baby carrots
1 yellow onion - chopped
1 bag frozen lima beans
Newman's Own Roasted Garlic and Parmesan salad dressing
The night before, prepare the meat by covering it with pepper and then browning the outside. Then fill a large freezer ziplock bag with 1/4 of the bottle of salad dressing and let the meat marinate overnight.
You can also prepare the potatoes, carrots, and onion the night before and put them in the crock pot with about 1/2 c. of water. This will cut preparation time in the morning.
In the morning, dump the entire bag of meat and marinade into the crock pot and then add another 1/4 of the bottle of salad dressing and 1/2 c. of water. Turn the crock pot on low and cook for 7 hours. When you get home, add the lima beans and until they defrost. Then you can serve and enjoy!
Last night I had a dream that I was completely unprepared for a race I had registered for. In the dream, I had a half-marathon in two weeks and I hadn't run in over a month. The part about not running in over a month is true, but luckily, I don't have a big race coming up. I think the dream was telling me to start running again... I am just REALLY enjoying being lazy and doing short little workouts here and there rather than intense ones. I keep telling myself that my body needs a break after my last race but it's been almost two months since then so I really need to get back into the groove of things.
Here are a couple links for articles about the benefits of running. It's hard to get off the couch and head outside for a run (trust me, I've run two half marathons in the last year and I'm still struggling with it!), but there are so many reasons why you should make that initial effort. It's worth it in the long run (or so I keep telling myself...).
Outrun Your Genes from Women's Health Magazine - you can actually beat your body's predisposition to become obese
Resolve to Run from Runner's World Magazine - tips to get you started6 Benefits of
Running from Active.come - it's more than just keeping down your body weight
76 Ways to Get Moving from Active.com - Do you need more reasons?
Everything you Need to Loving Walking and Running from Fitness Magazine
As some of you know, I like to read The Upper Room Daily Devotionals and sometimes, if I really like one or it hits close to home, I share it with others. Today's was a wonderful devotional and it is very comforting. It's a good message for all of us at every stage in our faith. Hope you all enjoy reading it and it gives you something positive to think about.
Message to Heaven: Read Philippians 4:4-7
Do not be like [those who pray using empty phrases], for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
— Matthew 6:8 (NRSV)
Each New Year’s Eve we continue a family tradition of shooting off fireworks, ringing in the new year with the old, iron dinner bell, and joining in prayer.
One New Year’s Eve, my young son, Sam, decided to write a message to God and attach it to one of the rockets. He wrote his message on a piece of notebook paper, front and back, attached it to the rocket, and lit the fuse. In seconds, sparks flew and the rocket soared into the star-studded sky in a blaze of glory, the message burning into the night. Afterward, my son sadly lamented, “My message went up in smoke.” This was a perfect opportunity to remind Sam that God knows what we need even before we ask.
We may sometimes feel that fireworks are required to get God’s attention. But in truth, God holds us in loving hands and attends to our every need. In the darkest night, no matter what time of year, we have God’s undivided attention.
The Author: Sarah Justus (Georgia, USA)
Thought for the Day: Every request we make gets God’s close attention.
Prayer: Dear God, thank you for always being ready to hear us and to give us what we need. Amen.
Prayer focus: Children learning to pray
Happy Thursday, everyone!! I hope everyone is having a great week! Sometimes I think my "Thankful Thursday" posts are my favorite part of my blog because it really makes me look past the little things that may be bugging me to find the things that truly matter in life. This week I'm thankful for:
I LOVE this picture from our honeymoon
My wonderful husband and his patience and kindness this week. We are getting back into the working groove after a couple 4-day weekends and it's taking some getting used to haha. Husband has been so grateful in the morning when I make his coffee and when he gets home and I have dinner ready. Even though this is what I usually do, it's great to be appreciated. And he's been supportive of my stressful periods and let me vent more than my fair share. Thanks, sweetheart!
Coming home to this ADORABLE face every single day makes my heart smile. Max is always ready for us to come home and the second we put our car in park, he jumps up to great us. How can you ever get tired of seeing something so sweet and welcoming?
My beautiful present from Salice and the time we spent together this week. We have been best friends for 12 years yet still can't seem to coordinate our schedules very well so we almost never get to see each other. For my Christmas present, she took me to dinner because she felt that quality time together (or time together in general) was the best present. We had a wonderful dinner and she gave me my birthday present while we were there. (Yes, my birthday is in August but giving presents 6 months late is fairly common for us lol). This vase says "Friends are like flowers, you get to pick them" and it's perfect :) So are the flowers she put in the vase for me :)
I'm also thankful for the time I get to read each day. I get to read on the bus and lately, I've had more time to read at home as well. Even though Husband isn't really a big reader and doesn't quite understand what I find so fascinating by it, he has become very supportive of my hobby. For Christmas, he got me The Hunger Games trilogy and made sure I also got The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest. I finished American Wife this week and now I'm getting started on my Christmas presents :) I loved American Wife and Husband even let me read some parts to him as I read it. Now I'm starting The Hunger Games and I can't wait to get deeper into it!
Hey Everyone! I hope you had a wonderful holiday and new year! I know it's been about a week since my last post (and two weeks since consistent blogging) but I'm back now! I haven't been around the computer too much the last two weeks because I've been off work and had my nose in a book :) Now that I'm beginning to get back into the groove of things, I will be sure to update you (and my blog) more often!
What did everyone do for new years? Do you have any good resolutions you plan to follow?? I have a few including: pack my lunch more often to save money/eat better, plan more healthy meals for the hubs and me, and exercise 3-4 days/week and record it on the calendar. Husband and I are share those resolutions. I also have a few of my own personal ones but I won't bore you with those!
Since it's Wednesday, and I always do recipes on Wednesday, I thought I'd share with you one of my all-time favorite morning meals. It's easy, healthy, and the husband loves it! I made this (and a delicious latte with our new espresso machine) for New Years breakfast. And sorry guys, since I've made it so much over the years, I just kind of estimate the amount of ingredients I use.
Waffles with Ricotta and Berries
Waffles (I just use frozen waffles - cuts time)
Part-Skim Ricotta Cheese (about 1/4 c. per waffle)
Maple Syrup (about 1-2 Tbsp.)
Nutmeg (a dash)
Toast the Waffles. Combine the Ricotta cheese, maple syrup, and nutmeg and stir until smooth. Top the waffles with the Ricotta spread and then top with berries. Enjoy!
It will fill you up with protein, fiber, and deliciousness!!
Loving and learning a little more each day.