Concerts, Friends and Nose Rings

I worked at bank right after college, because I’m a total nerd and I majored in Finance. It was an incredible job. I learned a ton about the small professional things everyone should know (I mean, how does one go about scheduling things in Outlook?), met some incredible friends and mentors but also just learned how on earth you actually dress/act/live as a young professional.

None of this is anywhere near the point of this blog post (as you can probably tell by the title)…  It’s all just there to describe to you how abouts I got to meet this incredible, bubbly, hilarious girl that I so wanted to be friends with… and how I started going to concerts. There’s a couple of different types of people… the type that go to the weird little concerts and random small venues… and people that just don’t.

I fell into the latter category until I met Teresa. If you wanted adventure, T was the perfect friend. We laughed, we tried new restaurants, shops, places… and we went to concerts.

Basically, she taught me the art of saying ‘YES’ to random things. And to random concerts. Do you know the artist? Does it matter? No. Just go. Thanks T.

So! A few weeks ago, a new friend posted on the interwebs about wanting to see Karmin while they were in Denver (Don’t know who they are? Let me just show you…or maybe this?! You’re welcome.). Well, I love Karmin. So I said yes.

And it was the best.

I’d totally forgotten how much I love random 200 people concerts. Because those artists are the ones that are giving it their EVERYTHING for the people that are paying them to do what they love. Which is absolutely where this group is. I mean, the guy ran around the stage playing the trombone. And she raps. Come on. That’s just cool.

Anywho, so new friend and I adventured up together. Early. We waited in line. It was freezing cold. We didn’t have coats. It was just an awesome night.

 

It was cold. And possible that we were standing in front of THEIR tour bus. So, I don't know if we were excited/nervous/cold based on our faces. It's possible it's all three.

It was cold. And possible that we were standing in front of THEIR tour bus. So, I don’t know if we were excited/nervous/cold based on our faces. It’s possible it’s all three.

And we didn’t get home until much to late for a nearly thirty year old and a mom (her, not me, this is not an announcement) to be out on a school night.

A trombone! How is he so talented? And how does anyone look that good in high-waisted spandex pants? They are amazing.

A trombone! How is he so talented? And how does anyone look that good in high-waisted spandex pants while sporting a cropped top? They are amazing.

But it was awesome, super inexpensive, hilarious, fun and we stood so close. Which, is just always delightful. And I made a new good friend… because 3 hours in the car together, a dinner at McDonalds (don’t you judge me) and four hours of standing on your feet will really do that to people.

So thank you T for making me the person that says ‘Yes!’ to random concert adventures. Thanks Whit for letting me tag along. And thank you Karmin for ROCKING it.

Now, go buy some concert tickets to a random small venue near you. You won’t regret it.

Bonus note (and to complete the blog title): If you’ll notice… I switched my nose piercing to an actual nose ring. I felt like I had to try it at least for a little while and an artsy concert just felt like the right place. Why is this a bonus note? Oh, because when The Boy saw me rocking it with it in for the first time he made up a little jingle and started singing it to me… and it went like this… “If you like it then you SHOULDN’T put a ring in it.” Yes. I died laughing. Yes. It just encourages me to keep it in longer. That boy. 

Tagged ,

Annette’s Enchiladas

Ladies and Gentlemen.

I have something special for you.

So special that I made this sucker twice in one week and ate it for leftovers FOR DAYS.

And those of you that know me, know I don’t do leftovers. But this? This I can stand in the kitchen with a fork eating it straight out of the pan. Which, is exactly what Shauna Niequist warned me would happen when I read about these initially. Yes, this is another incredible success from Bread and Wine. Yes, she has the recipe on her blog here. Go. Read. That. Book. Now.

Or, just run straight to the grocery store to grab these ingredients and happily make this at home instead.

You’ll thank me later.

I’d read about these in Bread and Wine initially. Then I’d heard friends rave over these. And then I saw them as a suggested dinner for an If: Gathering and I finally cracked. They just sounded like warmth, home cooking and happiness… and every once and awhile that just sounds fantastic. Plus, I was going to have dinner that night with a new dear friend and I just knew she’d be game for staying in with wine, trying a new recipe and laughing in the kitchen together (and God bless those instant kindred spirit type friends). So I ran quick to the grocery store on my way home, prepared to wow her with this meal when I showed up on her door step with it perfectly cooked and ready to enjoy.

Well Praise the Lord that she’s good humored, because within five minutes of arriving home I realized:

  • Chicken takes twenty minutes to boil and I didn’t budget pre-cooking chicken time, so dinner was just going to be late. (Side note: The dreaded ghetto Safeway that I live close to doesn’t have rotisserie chickens just hanging out at the checkout isle. Deep Sigh. I hate you Safeway. Even if you are quick and easy.)
  • I no longer own a 9×13 pan. It seems mine has wandered off.

So! After a quick text to my new BFF I packed pans, bowls, measuring cups, all of the groceries, and headed over to steal her kitchen (and her pans!) and finish the meal there. See. Total new best friendship.

We laughed, we discussed hopes and dreams, we dug deep. Seven hours of friendship total and she knows me better than some people I’ve known for years. Which might explain how we missed the very crucial step of turning on the oven. Which may or may not have doubled our cook time. Which is exactly why you should also grab chips and salsa as a compliment to this meal. Perfect appetizer and accidental tide over when dinner takes an hour!

I remade it that same weekend when The Boy and I decided to do dinner and a movie in on a rainy lazy Saturday. It was perfect. I don’t want to say we both got up for seconds (and maybe even thirds). But so far, it’s gotten some serious stamps of approval. And there’s just something about a meal that you have the ability to throw together quickly, that you know people will love and will turn out well that that warms my heart.

So my friends, I give you this meal. Perfect for making and enjoying with new friends and loved ones. Or making and taking to friends with new children. Or who have recently lost loved ones. It’s comfort food. Through and through. It tastes like happiness, it’s easy to reheat quick. And it honestly might be better day two after everything has perfectly jelled together.

Looking at this again is making me want it again for dinner tonight. Okay. Someone might need to stage an intervention.

Looking at this again is making me want it again for dinner tonight. Okay. Someone might need to stage an intervention.

Happy eating.

Annette’s Enchiladas

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 28-ounce can green enchilada sauce (Las Palmas is best)
  • 2 4-ounce small cans green chilies, diced
  • 3 cups cooked chicken, shredded or diced
  • 2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • 12 corn tortillas (I’m using 18 little guys)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • Cilantro

Instructions:

  1. Mix green sauce with chilies and sour cream.
  2. Smooth 1 spoonful of the sauce mixture around the bottom of a 9 by 13 pan.
  3. Simmer the chicken broth in a skillet, and before placing each tortilla in the 9 by 13 pan, use tongs (or fingers if you’re less fancy and don’t own tongs) to pass the tortilla through the broth for just a few seconds. If you leave the tortillas in the broth for too long, they’ll fall apart, so just dip each one in for a few seconds to soften it before putting it in the enchilada pan.
  4. Layer 4 tortillas over the first layer of sauce. (Here’s where I’m adjusting, 4 doesn’t make sense to me if you’re using the little guys, so I use 6 little guys and it works wonderfully)
  5. After tortillas, add half the chicken, then one-third of the sauce, then one-third of the cheese.
  6. Repeat so there are 2 full layers.
  7. Finish with a layer of 4 more tortillas (or six!), the remaining third of the sauce, and the remaining third of the cheese. – Bake at 350 degrees until warmed through and the cheese is melted, about 30 to 35 minutes.
  8. Let sit at least 15 minutes before cutting. Top with chopped cilantro.
Tagged , , ,

OVERNIGHT BLUEBERRY FRENCH TOAST

You know how every once and awhile you do something accidentally genius?

Well, today I feel like an accidental genius.

Because I found the best, most easy and totally inexpensive breakfast dish ever. And it tastes amazing.

Let me just summarize: carbs, cream cheese and blueberries… Yeah. It’s that good.

And when I say ‘I found’ I mean that in strictly the loosest terms. Because what really happened is this incredible lady sent it to me (as she’s been reading my cooking adventures) IN JANUARY with the suggestion that I try it because it was a sure fire win… and it’s taken me this long to try it.

Which, to be fair, it serves eight. And let’s be real, I’m not around eight people for breakfast that often. Ain’t nobody need to see me that bright and early, let alone seven poor souls hanging out with pre-caffinated Betsy.

But, what I realized was, I am hanging out with a group every week that was already used to seeing Betsy before the sun rises… and that they’d totally be the right crowd for this job! My Friday morning Bible Study. I sort of wish we had a catchy name for our crew to insert here, but we don’t. We’ll work on it.

Basically, it’s the most amazing group of women that has come together with the most amazing fearless leader. We meet before work every Friday at 7am and we’re having so much fun that we keep accidentally not leaving until 8:30am. We totally lose track of time as we chat – and that, my friends, is the sign of a great group! We laugh. We cry. We’re struggle together all while diving in and really focusing on some great scripture. Truly, it’s the highlight of my week every week and I just feel so darn lucky to have these girls loving on each other, pouring into one another, praying for each other and encouraging one another in every aspect of life.

Phew. Not to get too sentimental there, but gosh, they are just the best.

AND the most loving.

So! If I was going to have a cooking fail, then this felt like the perfect crowd to do it with. You know, the kind that would laugh with you as you all took the first terrible bite together? And then you’d joke about it for years to come.

Great news: That didn’t happen. And spoiler alert, I ::might:: have gotten called Betsy Crocker this morning. Yup. True story.

And all after minimal effort. Let’s just say, this sucker is going into rotation for everything! The blog that it comes from, Real Mom Kitchen, says she makes it for Easter every year. And since Easter is sneaking up on us, I’m taking that as a sign (thanks Jesus) that I have to make it for Easter brunch this year!

Overnight Blueberry Casserole

French Toast:

  • 12 slices bread, cut into cubes (I used Texas Toast and you should too.)
  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cut in cubes
  • 1 cup blueberries (use fresh! come on, you know you want to!)
  • 12 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 cups milk (why yes, that is the size of the little drinking containers at the grocery store!)

Syrup:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup blueberries (fresh!)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter

 Arrange 1/2 of the bread cubes in a greased 9 x 13 pan.

Sprinkle cream cheese cubes and blueberries evenly over the bread cubes. Top with remaining bread cubes. Mix together eggs, milk, and syrup. Pour over bread cubes and cover pan with foil. Let chill in refrigerator overnight. Bake covered with foil at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 30 minutes or until fluffy and golden. Top with sauce.

Serves 8.

Sauce: Cook water, sugar, and cornstarch until thickened. Stir in blueberries and simmer for 10 minutes. Add butter and stir until melted. Serve over the french toast. (Important Note: ‘cook until thickened’ requires more time than one minute… but if you’re, let’s say, in a hurry and you have to sort of just boil it together with the blueberries for a bit… it’s just as tasty!)

And this my friends, is what it turned out looking like:

Yuuuuuuuuuuum.

Yuuuuuuuuuuum.

See the melty cream cheese? See those fresh blueberries? CHECK OUT THAT TEXAS TOAST THAT SOAKED IN THAT EGG?! Delish. I don’t want to say that everyone had two servings, because we’re ladies. But you know, we totally did.

So thank you Kara for sending that my way and for making me look like a total rock star. I so appreciate it. You’re awesome.

And note, if you have something that’s a staple in your life, I’m so game to try it out. Just send it my way! Not only will you receive a shout out (I mean, take that for what it’s worth!), BUT you could contribute to altering my entire cooking future. And that’s really worth the investment… (maybe, probably, most likely)

Happy Friday my friends! T minus not too many hours before the weekend begins!

Tagged

Let’s Bubble America!

I have a brilliant, hilarious, wonderful amazingly kind hearted, incredibly selfless friend name Maggie.

I completely and absolutely stole this image from the Let's Bubble America! Contest. I don't deserve any credit for the sheer beauty she's shining. That all goes to the Chicago Ad Agency. High five ad agency. You captured all of her awesome!

I completely and absolutely stole this image from the Let’s Bubble America! Contest. I don’t deserve any credit for the sheer beauty she’s shining. That all goes to the Chicago Ad Agency. High five ad agency. You captured all of her awesome!

A few weeks ago, I received this email from her that had me both 100% impressed… and 100% in stiches. After debating about posting the whole thing for a little bit, I’ve decided I’m not even going to bother attempting to summarize it, but let you read it: 1) because this way you can see all of the sheer awesomeness that I’m referring to and b) I think you’ll be able to appreciate why Maggie’s my BFF immediately:

Subject Line: Scrubbing Bubbles and Maggie

Body of Email: So.  I think I have the best and most random story ever to share with you today.

It is about Scrubbing Bubbles.

And I know what you’re thinking: “what do you mean a story about Scrubbing Bubbles?”  Well, my friend…it is an awesome story.  Very few people would appreciate it as much as you!

So back in October, I saw that Scrubbing Bubbles was asking for nominations for an upcoming promotion called LET’S BUBBLE AMERICA.  They were looking for non-profit organizations that were in need of a DEEP CLEAN from Scrubbing Bubbles.  I got to thinking about it and realized that The Gathering Place (the soup kitchen in LNK at 14th and E…I’m guessing you know about it and/or have volunteered there) would definitely qualify as a non-profit in need of a deep clean.  TGP is in an old home built in 1900, just south of the governor’s mansion.  It is huge and old and, well, not super clean.  So, I filled out an application/nomination for TGP, uploaded a photo, included a few paragraphs about how awesome TGP is, and moved on with my life.

Literally, forgot I even did this.

Until Wednesday when my phone rang.  It was Ogilvy, an ad agency out of Chicago who handles Scrubbing Bubbles for SC Johnson.  After confirming my identity, the woman proceeded to tell me that out of the 700+ nominations they received, they had decided TGP was one of the top 9 finalists for LET’S BUBBLE AMERICA!  LOL  The winner will be decided by nationwide vote (March 15-April 15).  She then proceeded to say that Ogilvy will be sending a representative to LNK next week (Wedn) to (1) interview me; (2) interview the director of TGP; and (3) take video footage that will eventually turn into a 30 second video for TGP.  Each finalist will have a 30 second video on the voting page.

AND THEN it got funnier.

The lady told me that she needed to do a criminal background check on me.  And I was like “why?”  And she said: “Well, because the top 3 finalists will interact with our celebrity spokeswomen.”

GET THIS:

The top three vote getters (nominator and nominee…so me and the director of TGP, if we are top 3) will go on THE QUEEN LATIFAH SHOW with QUEEN LATIFAH and TIA AND TAMARA MOWRY (Sister Sister girls…however you spell their last name).  LOL.  LOL.  LOL.
 
So….
 
THIS IS REAL.  I might meet Sister Sister and the Queen. 
 
The grand prize is a clean (services and products) valued at $10,000!!!!!  The Gathering Place director is seriously freaking out.  And so am I!!!!
 
Isn’t this the funniest thing you’ve ever heard!?!?!??!?!?!?!?

And here’s the thing. It was pretty stinking funny. But it’s also one of the most awesome things that I’ve ever heard. I LOVE Maggie for taking a moment when she thinks “this would be great for them” to actually submit them, to share part of her story and to share the story of an incredible organization that does so much for the community. What’s this place that she so loves you may ask? Great question! The Gathering Place is a soup kitchen in Lincoln that serves over 30,000 meals every year to one of the towns low income neighborhoods. And they are in an old building and they rely almost solely on volunteer help, and that just means that a $10,000 deep clean would really go a LONG way for this great place.

I’m sure you’re thinking “sure Betsy, but you’re just biased because she’s your best friend and you’re just secretly writing this because you want her to win and take you to meet Sister Sister.”

Wrong. I’m not biased (but you’re maybe 56% right about the Sister Sister thing) about Maggie being awesome. And I know that because Cindy Lange-Kubick wrote an article about the whole thing here.

So I’m hoping this inspires you to do two things:

1) Take a moment and GO VOTE! You can vote every.single.day. if you want. Heck, you could set a reoccurring appointment on your calendar and just do it every day really quickly before you leave work. Or while you’re making dinner. Or eating breakfast at the breakfast table. OR you can just vote once if this is the only time you think about it. But I’d sure appreciate if you took 5 seconds out of your day to click that link and vote real quick like. Maggie would appreciate it too. And so would The Gathering Place. Basically what I’m saying here is, that five seconds of your life would mean a whole lot to at least two people and one very cool place.

2) The next time you have a moment for a random act of kindness, do it. It may be one quick moment out of your busy life, but it could mean incredible rewards for someone (or something!) else. A deep clean for this place? That affects 30,000 meals being served next year. That’s just completely overwhelming to think about. And worth every second on the front end out of your packed day.

And as an added bonus kids, remember, one small act of kindness could lead you to meeting Queen Latifah. Which, is basically the best random payoff… like ever.

Happy voting!

Tagged , , , ,

Jear Bear

We all know that I’m the most inconsistent blogger of all times. Which makes for a back log of excellent cooking successes (okay, and failures too!) and other humorous stories from my life that I’m just dying to share with you, but don’t really make the cut of ‘things to do in my day before I climb into bed.’

And then every once and awhile something happens and I think “no, this is worth dropping everything on my massive to-do list just to respond to this because it’s HILARIOUS.”

Great news people, that is exactly what has happened with Jear Bear.

NO, I don’t have some sort of new pet name for The Boy. But I DO have a new stuffed teddy bear FROM the boy.

Oh, I hope you all just took a deep intake of breath there. I wouldn’t blame you. A stuffed teddy bear? Aren’t you like 29 now? Are we not past that gross ‘I’m giving this girl a teddy bear so that she can cuddle with it and love it just like I love her’ phase?

Answer: Yes. Yes we are.

(Sidenote: If you are a 29 year old girl reading this and you like getting teddy bears. Then I’m really sorry. I’m mean. I’m cruel. I have no heart. Also, next time try asking for jewelry, seriously, its way more fun.)

So, imagine my surprise when for my birthday (reminder: my favorite day of the year) I get called to the front desk to pick up my beautiful tulips… and a very fluffy teddy bear… covered in loud obnoxious saran wrap. You know, the kind where you think “oh, I’ll just quietly smuggle this into my cube” but you can’t because it just is screaming at people every time you make the slightest move, just alerting them to the very fact that someone gave you something and everyone within walking distance to your cube should run over immediately and publicly question you about your new lovely teddy bear.

Yeah, that was a run on sentence. I know, I’m not even sorry because that’s exactly how I would have voiced this story out loud at you.

ANYWHO, here’s where the dilemma began. On one hand, I’m so exited! The Boy sent me tulips! It’s love! He cares! THIS IS THE BEST DAY EVER.

On the other hand, a teddy bear? It’s seriously a teddy bear? Do I look like the hopeless romantic type that likes teddy bears? Does my boyfriend even know me at all?

What do you do? Do you say something? Do you causally bring it up in conversation? Or do you just keep it to yourself because you’re so lucky that you have a boy that sends you tulips?

Well, you all know me, and knowing me means you just know I brought it up.

Which I did. I’d like to think gently. And here’s what I found out: The bear came with the tulips and was supposed to be the size of a beanie baby, just a small little add-on that no one would notice.

Left Hand Side: What I now own. Right Hand Side: What the Internet said I would own.

Left Hand Side: What I now own. Right Hand Side: What the Internet said I would own.

Now that’s funny. I’d like to thank you internet for unexpectedly upgrading me to something much larger than you promised. High five floral shop. Way to go. Also, WHY DID YOU DO THAT!?!?

And sure, that’s sort of funny, but even more funny is what happened when I left later that day:

Buckle up new little best friend.

Buckle up new little best friend.

Here’s the situation. I go to climb in my car to leave. Bear in hand. And I think “Oh I should totally buckle him and send a picture to The Boy.” And then I was giggling so hard as it was happening that I thought “I should post this on Instagram because the world needs to know how funny I am this is.” And while posting, I was like, this guy obviously needs a hashtag of his own…

And so began: #adventureswithjearbear

This means:

  1. My new little friend has a name.
  2. I call him my new little friend (Yes, I appreciate that’s a serious change within the span of the afternoon. I’m a girl. We’re crazy. Back off.).
  3. I find it hilarious to bring him in public and to take pictures and post them.

Yeah, true story. So recently, you may have seen Jear Bear:

Wearing an ironic beard at Hipster themed Young Life Club.

Wearing an ironic beard at Hipster themed Young Life Club.

There were freshman boys just holding him at club. Just because he was there. It was adorable. Also, hilarious. Also, he made it into the skit. Jear Bear = Famous.

Eating Tacos at Taco Tuesday!

Eating Tacos at Taco Tuesday!

Don’t worry, he was using a fork and wearing a napkin to make sure he didn’t get dirty.

And tonight, Jear Bear will be rock climbing.

No. I don’t know how that will work.

Yes. I think it’s hilarious.

And all of this because The Boy was thoughtful enough to send a stuffed teddy bear. Which, my reaction to said bear has potentially created a new ‘thing’ we have. Please Good Lord, do not let me receive a stuffed animal as a present ever year. Even if it’s ironic. Because I don’t really think it’s romantic. Just hilarious.

Here’s to you Jear Bear (again, only the name of the teddy bear, I repeat, this is not a pet name for The Boy). Can’t wait to see what adventures lie in store…

 

Tagged ,

A Little Valentine’s Tradition

I have a little Valentine’s Day tradition.

I eat heart shaped pizza and enjoy a bubbly drink.

I blame one Jenny Swarth for that. It started in college for no particular reason. And it stuck. And now, I feel very strongly that Valentine’s Day isn’t complete with those ingredients.

Sadly, J Swarth moved away for grad school, but the pizza and bubbly drink continued with various friends. And the day was always wonderfully celebrated and filled with love.

And moving to Colorado, finding The Boy, and losing my hook up with Valentino’s Pizza can’t stop me.

It’s tradition. And I continue to want to celebrate that way.

Good news friends – my loving Boy is flexible and willing to share LOVE day with other friends, a pile of board games and questionably decent pizza.

My gingers! The pizza! A perfect night.

My gingers (they wore their red hair for Valentine’s Day! How thoughtful!)! The pizza! A perfect night.

So from my home to yours, a very happy (and obviously belated) LOVE day!

And note: if you’re ever in my vicinity around mid-February and you’re coming from a town that DOES have Valentino’s… I wouldn’t be mad if you brought me a heart shaped pizza to cook at a later date… I promise to love you for forever.

Oh who am I kidding, if you’re ever visiting and you bring me food from Nebraska, my love for you will always grow. And yes, I’m looking at you Runza Becky…

Tagged , ,

An Ode to Chuck.

People, I have giant, life-altering, incredible news.

And by that, I actually just mean I have generic news, but I’m REAL excited to tell you about it.

I have finished watching Chuck.

Oh, you didn’t know I started it because I watched it so FAST?! That’s fair. I understand. I have that “I turned on the television for one episode and then was still sitting here five episodes later and it’s one in the morning and I haven’t had dinner” problem. (If none of you have that problem, totally disregard that last sentence as a joke…or something.)

Anywho, I have officially watched all 91 episodes of cute-nerdy-geek-squad-turned-undercover-spy-asset Chuck. I did the math. That means I’ve spent a whopping 63 hours of my life watching a television show. Let’s not think of the part time job I could have had with that time. Or how that amount of hours would basically get me my realtors license. Or anything else productive.

Let’s instead look at it as I started a large undertaking and I finished it.

I’m SUCH a goal master.

I’m also a rock star girlfriend (because yes it IS The Boy’s favorite show, which, may or may not be the reason I was watching it in the first place…).

But enough about me. Check out this cast of people that have become my fake friends.

Come on. They just LOOK like fun don't they? So fun YOU TOO could spend 63 hours of your life with them.

Come on. They just LOOK like fun don’t they? So fun YOU TOO could spend 63 hours of your life with them.

 

So much so that by the last episode I was SOBBING over them. Which, is only terrible (read: embarrassing) since it’s The Boy’s favorite show and I was watching it with him. I think he was worried I was broken.

Nope. Not broken, just crying over fictional characters. NBD. Oh, that’s not how you watched it because you’re a boy? My bad.

So if it’s looking like you have a large chunk of unaccounted for time about to hit your hands (or you just generally think sleep is overrated), might I suggest this show? Why yes, it is on Netflix… AND it’s boy/girl friendly. And I think appropriate for all ages (I don’t have children, so while it seems appropriate to me, some might say I’m a bad judgment call there)? It’s just a nice, friendly, happily little show about a cute nerdy boy (that you will fall in love with), a will they/won’t they situation with his sassy blonde co-spy, and the stinking best random supporting cast of characters ever.

Thanks for 63 hours of laughs (and ::shakes fists:: tears) Chuck. You’ve been great.

And to the rest of you, I’m sorry that I just potentially inspired you to waste devote every night for the next two months watching this show. You can thank me when you’re done*.

*Ahem, unless you hate the ending, which, I hear some people did. But I thought it was nice. I guess have low expectations going in and there’s a better chance all will end well!

Tagged

Shoes.

So the other day I wore shoes that were too big to work.

And by too big, I mean that these suckers wouldn’t stay on my feet when I was walking more than four steps. To be fair, I blame the stretchy TOMS ballet flat fabric and the fact that it was really cold outside. Which is my way of saying that I will absolutely make this mistake again because these shoes are cute.

My plan (after realizing what a tactical error this had been) was to go home and change them out at lunch. But then someone invited me out for a one dollar taco from a taco place with Taco Tuesdays… And I mean you can’t say no to a taco… Especially when it’s cheap and within walking distance…

Which, reflecting now, was a terrible idea. If the shoes don’t stay on my feet for four steps, imagine how bad it was for four miles (okay okay, blocks).

So I did the logical thing and popped into the store next to the Mexican restaurant and bought new shoes.

Oh, did I say logical?

I meant insane expensive ridiculous thing.

But seriously, how cute is this pair of TOMS?! And in chevron. I died.

20140115-195359.jpg

And THAT’S the story of how I spent $50 on a random taco lunch.

So… Looks like we have a ways to go on that whole “fiscally responsible” thing. But hey, it’s all a learning curve right?!

Tagged ,

One Whole Year In Colorado.

I wanted to write a post and tell you all of my most favorite or most impactful things from 2013. A little year end wrap up if you will. A way to describe the first whole year of living in another state. To laugh about almost nearly torching my apartment to the ground with an oil fire. To remember the time I was THAT crazy cat lady who made a liter box cabinet for her cat that has… NEVER BEEN USED. Or reminisce about when I was worried that the Selena look was making a come back. I mean, isn’t that what Buzzfeed would want me to do?!

But here’s what I realized, this has just been an incredibly wonderful hard strange year. End of the year Betsy just feels like quite a different person than beginning of the year Betsy. And I didn’t have a great way of picking the ‘ten best/worst/most interesting things that happened’ simply because things just felt like they were on a different scale at different parts of the year.

There’s the hard parts of the year. The part where I lost family members I cared about and couldn’t be there immediately to hug my loved ones. The part where I ended a long term relationship that basically just broke me into pieces. And the part where I missed all of my friends living 500 miles away from my new life so badly my soul hurt.

But then there’s the other parts. The second half of year the year. That’s the part where I bought skis, tried rock climbing, learned to live on my own and fend for myself, found geocaching, explored my new state, learned the art of organization, the joy that a clean color coordinated closet can bring you, made some successful meals and taught people in this state that chili and cinnamon rolls is an actual legit combination.

And while doing that, I found some wonderful new incredible friends. The ones that invited a stranger to their birthday parties, their church outings and their weekly activities. The ones that listened to my doubts and drank wine with me on my porch just because. The ones that spent lunch hours with me tagging along as we went shopping at their favorite boutique. The ones that are always game for a pedicure and will absolutely eat dinner with you at that nasty fried fish place that no one ever wants to admit they go to. And the one that I didn’t know at all, but moved in with me so I could afford rent and somehow magically puts up with my crazy animals and makes me laugh on a daily basis.

And somewhere in the midst of all of that I stumbled upon a wonderful new man that gently helped me pick up those pieces my heart had broken into and put them back into place. And then I fell in love with that very sweet and incredible man who brings out the very best of me and makes me laugh at the little things in life again.

And being only 500 miles from home allowed me to travel home when I needed too. The funerals, the weddings, the sorority events that I just couldn’t miss, the basketball games my brother played in, the graduation of that same brother from high school, the major events and holidays with the family.

And even though I didn’t want to do a year end wrap up, what I did want to do very badly was thank everyone that participated in this year of my life with me.

So, to those of you in my life in 2013, thank you for all of the joy you brought me. Thanks for the phone calls, the in person visits, the invites to lunch, the comments on the blog, the random posts on my facebook wall, the FaceTime calls, the handwritten notes, the recipe sharing and the Christmas Cards. Because if anything was consistent through the year, it was the incredible love of my friends (and family!). I owe you all my healthy mental state. You guys rock.

Here’s to a blessed 2014 for each and every one of you.

And don’t worry, even though I’ve turned into a total ski bunny granola eating Coloradan (bwahahaha – NOT) I promise to continue to blog through the good, the bad and the hilarious.

Bring it on 2014.

Tagged

Goat Cheese Omelet

Did you just die reading those words? Is your heart happy because you saw GOAT CHEESE in the title?

If not, I’m confused as to how we’re friends, but, I’ll attempt to move past that and continue upon my merry way of telling you about how I HAVE FOUND SOMETHING INCREDIBLE.

Let me start with the two things that weighed into this:

  1. I recently finished reading Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist. You guys, it’s incredible. It’s about friendship and wine and community around a table. And you know what’s better? It’s a collection of short stories, most of which feature a memory centered around a dish. Being at the lake house with friends and always having XYZ for dinner, knowing someone was sad and needing a casserole and feeding them the casserole. At the end of each of these fantastic stories, she includes the recipes. Which, are fantastic. I loved this book. I’m loving the recipes. Do yourself a favor, go buy a copy of this book for yourself, and one for your best friend, so you can read it together and then gab about how fabulous this incredible woman is and how you want to stage a random meeting and somehow get invited to one of her dinner parties…
  2. I adore breakfast. I could probably eat eggs for every meal. Especially if they were served with greasy hash browns and bacon… but even without all of the million extra calories those delicious side items I’ll take the eggs. For. Every. Meal.

So after reading one of my potential new bff’s new favorite author’s stories about goat cheese scrambled eggs… I thought “eggs and goat cheese… yes.” And then happily added ‘goat cheese crumbles’ to my grocery shopping list.

I thought maybe I’d save it for when there were a couple of people around to try it out with me… but then I remembered the losing streak I was on and decided to give it an initial go on my own.

So I threw a couple eggs in a bowl, whipped them up and then poured them into my fancy new mini skillet (thanks dad!) and cooked them on one side. Then I flipped those suckers over and while they were cooking the other side, I added goat cheese crumbles and spinach (you know, the vitamins and anti-oxidants and whatever else that’s good in spinach offsets the badness of the goat cheese… right?!) and folded it over and BAM! it looked just like a little breakfast place had made it for me.

So it's a little torn... and on a plain piece of toast... but it's still magically beautiful.

So it’s a little torn… and on a plain piece of toast… but it’s still magically beautiful.

Okay, it looked a LITTLE bit like a professional made it for me. You know, because it wasn’t burnt and had some fancy ingredients in it!

And then I took my little fork and cut myself a little bite and tried it.

And then I died and went to heaven. My heart was filled with joy and happiness. And the sun started shining and there were rainbows and a unicorn. Eggs and goat cheese.

Flipping genius.

I officially know what I’ll be eating for lunch every day this week. Um, you know, cause I want to practice my technique and um, really make it so that I can WOW guests when they come over.

Oh who am I kidding. It’s because it’s great and I want to eat it every day all day long.

Your takeaways from this blog? Go buy that book right now and read it. It’s so amazing.

And then sprinkle a little magic dust… I mean… goat cheese on your eggs the next time. It’ll make your stomach cry happy tears of delight!

Tagged , , ,