Friday, August 30, 2013

28th Birthday

Today I'm turning 28! I would be posting some birthday pictures and also a 7 week belly picture, but I have to pull 24 hour duty again instead. Oh well! Belly picture can wait until tomorrow. I plan on enjoying some fancy cupcakes today once I get a break for lunch. 
I hope everyone has a great Labor Day weekend! 

A sweet e-card my friend sent me today! Look at those cuties!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

How to Annoy Your Cat

No kitties were harmed in the making of this post! She's was, however, probably annoyed. But she always gets lots of treats and pets afterward ;)

Pretend you are going to give her a bath.
Anytime my husband picks her up and walks anywhere near the bathroom her meows get louder and louder and she tries to grab anything within reach. We have never once given her a bath! Her previous owners must have bathed her. I'm guessing she did NOT like it.

Hold her like a baby and pet her tummy.
You will probably have to turn the audio up all the way to hear it, but her little buzzing/purr noise is too funny. Probably just to us, but I'm posting it anyway! Does she even like getting pets?? We can't tell.

Try to make her the next Keyboard Cat.
Not quite as good, miss kitty, but we will work on it.

Hold her while a harmless and friendly dog is excited about playing with her.
Charlie got so excited when we would pick her up! She was not very happy about that!

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Sweet List - Diaper Bags (that don't look like they belong tobabies!)

Is it just me, or do diaper bags always look awful? I'm a grown up. I don't want to carry around a bag that looks like it belongs to a kindergartener. Just because it holds baby things doesn't mean it needs to have Mother Goose on it. I guarantee the baby doesn't care either. No to mention that I'm not the only one who is going to be using this piece of equipment. My husband is also going to be taking it with him... so it needs to not look like a woman's purse.
I went on an Etsy search for diaper bags and I hardly had any luck. There were either goofy looking bags or just your basic messenger bag that could supposedly double as a diaper bag. Then it dawned on me... I'm probably going to be taking the camera anytime I take out the baby, you know, because he or she is going to be freaking adorable. I also assume a diaper bag needs lots of pockets... so what has lots of pockets, looks unisex and can carry a camera? A camera bag! Boom. I'm a genius.

Distressed Leather Bag - I love this bag style!

Canvas and Leather Bag - I think this shop wins hands down for bags. It's even called "AWESOMEBAG" So yeah. I'm sure I'll be purchasing one of these soon. They are reasonably priced too!

timi & leslie Sophia Diaper Bag - Not unisex and not even a camera bag, but a legit diaper bag! Whoa! I love it. 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Weekend Nails #12

I know it's a little plain, just black and white polka dots, but I wanted to do it ever since I got my dot tool. 

Today is another day searching for our friends dog, Charlie. I hope we find him today! I hope at least someone picks him up and takes him to the shelter so he isn't so cold and stuck in the rain... I feel so sad for my friends. It wasn't their fault he ran away either, some guys on post were fixing their fence and they just left the gate open! Jerks! I would be so sad if I lost kitty... I get nervous enough when she goes outside.

L.A. Colors - Energy Source
Sally Hansen - Black Diamond

Friday, August 23, 2013

Baby Bump - Six Weeks!

Well, my tummy looks just like last week! I know six weeks is nothing, but I'm so anxious! Right now it's kind of like everything is the same as being not pregnant except I can't drink wine, eat sushi or have lox on my bagels. Still no morning sickness or anything really. I'm crossing my fingers on skipping that all together... Great, I probably jinxed myself.

Today was interesting... Charlie-dog, the cutest German shorthair pointer evaaaaar who we took care of  last month for our friends, went missing last night. We spent six hours today looking for him and he didn't turn up. They went to animal control and filed a report and everything. Hopefully someone will find him. Poor Charlie... That boy is so afraid of people. We are going out again tomorrow so wish us luck!!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Curried Quinoa with Cherries and Crispy Roasted Chickpeas

Quinoa is one of those perfect side dishes that's easy to make and easy to keep on hand. Not to mention it's healthy!
Since plain quinoa is boring I usually spice it up with curry. You can substitute most of the ingredients here, like replacing the cherries with dried currants or raisins. You can also use green peas instead of chickpeas. I even replace the quinoa with cous cous when I am in a rush to get dinner finished.

I entered this recipe on Food52's Your Best Quinoa Recipe contest. Check it out! I just thought it would be fun to try it out and see what happens.

1 Cup quinoa
1 1/2 Cups vegetable broth
15 oz Can garbanzo beans
1 Roma tomato, diced
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cloves
1/4 Cup dried cherries

Soak quinoa in cool water for ten minutes, strain, rinse and let drain for 20 minutes. Toast the quinoa in  a sauce pan to remove excess liquid.
While the quinoa is draining, prepare the garbanzo beans. Preheat the oven to 400. Drain and dry the beans with a paper towel. Spread the beans on a cookie sheet and drizzle on 1 tablespoon olive oil. Coat the beans in the oil by stirring them around the cookie sheet. Sprinkle with salt. Toast in oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

Mix the curry, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, garlic powder and 1/2 tsp salt together and whisk it in the vegetable broth. Add dried cherries to the broth and bring to a rapid boil.

Add the quinoa to the broth and turn down the heat to a simmer. Cover the saucepan, leaving space for ventilation, and let it simmer until the liquid is gone and the seeds show a white spot in the middle with a ring around them (like Saturn rings) About 20 minutes.
Fluff with a fork and place in a serving bowl. Toss quinoa together with the chickpeas and diced tomato. Enjoy!

This recipe was adapted from two sources, Steamy Kitchen's Crispy Roasted Chickpeas, and Eating Rules Fluffy Quinoa.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Ducks Fly Together

While I was waiting to meet Joe at the 16 mile mark of the marathon I took some quick photos of the cute little lady ducks swimming in the lagoon.

Boy, do I need to get a better camera! I don't want to miss any more cute photographic moments like these anymore. We are going on our road trip in a couple of months and I want to have great photos of everything. It's going to be such a special time because I'll be 5 months pregnant with our first baby, it will be Joe's first time in California, and it will be the closest I will probably get to doing my cross country road trip. I always wanted to buy a volkswagon van and take a long nomadic trip across the country, sleeping on a mattress in the back.

I may not have a van but we will certainly have a great time! I can't wait to show Joe all my favorite places in California and finally see the rest of the west coast. Our first stop will be Seattle, followed by Portland, then a drive past wine country. I can't go wine tasting but might I'll pick up a bottle or two for after the little bear cub arrives.
We will go across the Golden Gate and through San Francisco, stopping so Joe can skate the Embarcadero. I'm sure I'll be dragging him to vintage shops on Valencia, the Haight, and going to a club in the Castro (don't forget Orphan Andy's midnight diner!) San Francisco will be so great! I love that city.
After a day or two in SF, we will drive through Santa Cruz to visit my grandfather whom I haven't seen in years now. His health took a turn for the worse a few weeks ago, so I know I have to see him before I can't anymore. I last heard he was recovering, so that's good. Not to mention Santa Cruz is a dream town! I would give anything for a house there by the beach! I will make Joe go to a nude beach there too.... I'm sure he will give me a hard time but it's happening!! I'm such a hippie that way.

After that it's straight to San Diego! I will pick up my stuff out of storage and then the long drive to Louisiana we go.

 I am looking forward to this so much!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Kitschy Kitties - Mother of Cats!

Our thrift shopping problem hasn't ended... Since we learned we are expecting I got all excited and decided to look for a rocking chair. As soon as I walked in I saw THIS kitty! I was so happy. She will live on our side table, looking triumphant and proud, until we move to a bigger house where she should have a place in the entryway. This is a cat who needs to greet people. Just look at her luxurious fur! She's bigger than Mrs. Peacock!
We didn't find a rocking chair but we picked up a bunch of onesies for less than a dollar each. I couldn't resist!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Letters to the Bear Cub - Daddy's Marathon

Hey little bear! 
You are only as big as a sesame seed right now in my tummy, but I thought you might like to know how proud I am of your daddy! This was his fourth marathon and he did really well. He hurt his knee and it was raining the whole time but he kept on going!
That's that kind of guy he is. He always keeps going when bad things happen. 
I don't want to get too cheesy on you, but I know he was thinking about you while he was running. 
I'll write you again little bear!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Kitty Mug

Good Morning! Whoa, check out my bed head! 

Is that not the coolest kitty mug ever?

We are off to the marathon this morning. I'm not running it, of course, Joe is. Did you know that up until the 70's women were not allowed to run marathons? They thought our vaginas would fall out of our bodies! That's no joke people. Remember that the next time you think feminism is unnecessary. 

Have an excellent Sunday!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Weekend Nails #11

I finally got to paint my nails again! It seems like such a waste to do it when I only have a two day weekend. By the time I get around to it, it ends up taking a couple hours and then the whole day has gone by! Since I had a three day weekend and some new polish colors I thought I should do it. 

Joe is practicing his electric guitar with the amp this morning. Will our baby end up a metal-head?? Haha!

L.A. Colors - Tropical Breeze
L.A. Colors - Energy Source
Essie - Nothing Else Metals

Baby Bump - Five Weeks

This is my first belly picture! I'm sure I will look exactly the same for the next few weeks but I thought I should start early. 

Saturday is Joe's fourth marathon (his first in Alaska.) I'm so excited! I've only gotten to see him race once on Thanksgiving Day in 2010. We are pretty much going to relax and play board games this weekend, especially after his long run when he is super sore!
I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Happy Birthday!

Today is my husbands 25th birthday! We had a really nice lobster tail dinner. I also found a really fabulous recipe for Red Lobster Cheddar Bay imitation biscuits here... I usually hate recipes that copy places like Olive Garden but I have to admit those biscuits are pretty delicious! This is the only recipe I found that doesn't use Bisquick, so that was really nice. They came out very well! We had present opening time after dinner and followed it up with Tiramisu for dessert. He was really happy with his gifts (I got him some Playstation gear, a new controller and a capture card)

In other news, we had our first appointment at the hospital for an orientation. We got information on all the programs they have for new parents. They even have a program where you have a nurse assigned to you from pregnancy all the way up to age 5. It is just like a program that Sweden and other countries with socialized medicine have. The nurses come to your house and give you information and help. How cool is that? I'm so excited. I can't wait to start showing... I don't have any morning sickness or anything so it feels like it's not even real yet.
I should probably enjoy my time in my first trimester before I get bigger and more exhausted, but I'm so anxious!

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Sweet List - Baby Things!

I'm kind of at a loss right now. I feel like I should be so pumped to make baby things! I really don't know where to start... and boy do I wish I had my surger with me! Talk about an easy way to make receiving blankets and washcloths. I guess pinking shears and a zigzag stitch will have to do.

I found a ton of inspiration on Etsy:

Woodgrain Baby Bib - How cute is this bib and cloth? I saw this and it was immediately decided that I will be searching for a woodgrain print as soon as I have a chance to go to the fabric store!

Cotton Gauze Baby Wrap - It will be hot in Louisiana so I think this light wrap would be great to have!

Organic Baby Wipes - Are store bought disposable wipes unnecessary? Probably. Do I have time to wash reusable wipes all the time? It's worth a shot. I'm sure these would come in handy for a million and a half things anyway.

Felt Mobile - This inspires me to make my own mobile!

Baby Bear Hat and Cocoon Set - I'm for sure making one of these sets for our little bear cub.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Wedding and a Baby Shower

This Saturday was super busy! We had a wedding to go to in the morning and a baby shower in the afternoon. We ended the night at a friends house where we played the Game of Thrones drinking game (I, of course, drank water.)
The wedding took place on the beach. It was pretty rainy but they managed to get through the ceremony without getting wet. My friend, the groom, was so nervous it was adorable. The bride's cousin married them (anyone can be ordained in Alaska to perform a wedding ceremony) and he had lovely words to say.

The reception was wonderful, they had local beers on tap and delicious food. It's too bad we couldn't stay the whole time! We couldn't stay for the whole reception because we had a baby shower to go to.
The baby shower was absolutely adorable and a wonderful party. And the cake! The cake was fabulous! It was made by a high school girl too! Such talent!

All those cute baby things made me so excited for my own baby shower! It also made me a little nervous because of the ALL the stuff you seem to need (car seat strap covers??) I'm sure as long as there is a place to sleep, diapers and food we will be good.

This was a crazy weekend! Next week I get an extra day off. I hope I can catch up on some projects and share them!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Classic Balsamic Dressing

When I was a kid my Dad always made a salad with dinner. From what I remember, he used red wine vinegar, but of course I seem to love balsamic vinegar, so that is the kind I used for this recipe. This is the type of dressing that can go on any salad and can be kept in the fridge for a long time. It's a nice step up from the plain oil and vinegar dressing that people sometimes use for a regular dinner salad.

1/2 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Dijon Mustard
1 Clove Crushed Garlic
Pepper to taste

Mix everything together in a dressing bottle that can be shaken without spilling, shake it up and enjoy! I added mine to a strawberry walnut salad. This makes enough to keep as a table condiment for a long time.

I hope everyone is enjoying the last bit of summer! The Alaskan summer is over and the leaves are already changing. It will be snowing before you know it!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Big News

So my first day back to work was pretty eventful... I immediately had to go through a pre-deployment health screening thingy with about 150 people. Did I mention I'm NOT even deploying? I got shots, which turned out to be extremely painful, I still can't lift my right arm. I also had to do a 24 hour shift, no sleeping allowed, which was sprung on me out of nowhere. This was topped off with a painful migraine that lasted until about 7:30 this morning.

You would think that as a first day back from an amazing vacation that it would suck pretty badly... But it turns out that it was probably the best day ever! While taking the health screening I was given a pregnancy test...
It came back positive!

Like, whaaaaat???

I seriously didn't know what to think. My brain was sort of frozen in time for about 10 to 12 hours after I was told the test results. It's still hard to process. I don't feel any different. I don't feel extra hungry or extra tired or nauseous or anything like that. I pretty much spent the day calling family members and telling them the news. I spent last night downloading pregnancy apps and looking up patterns for baby slings and looking for organic hemp baby hammocks, LOL.

Anyway... I have pretty nice collection of old family photos and albums (pictures from the victorian era, even!) I found these on my computer. Soon I will get to take some baby pictures and add them to the collection!

My Grandmother Edna with my Aunt April in the early fifties.

My Great Grandmother, Sarah, holding my mother in October 1956.

...and that's me! In good old 1985.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Sweet List - Vintage Vanity Table

Is there anything more fun than taking a Saturday evening to pamper yourself? I know when I've had a hard week at work I like to come home, take a bubble bath with a glass of wine in hand (or champagne if I really want to do it Marilyn Monroe style) and have some jazz playing in the background. This is usually followed by being wrapped up in a robe and putting on face cream, pin curling my hair and sometimes doing my makeup for that night if I plan to go out. Nights like that deserve a fancy dressing table, which I don't currently have. I found a couple of vintage jewelry boxes that match each other for my dressing table (if you can call it that) but I still lack a larger box for the bulk of my jewelry and I would love a cute place to store my makeup brushes!
I remember being a kid and having adorable little mirrors and perfume bottles that were so fancy. I always thought I would have a pretty vanity filled with makeup and jewelry when I got older. I guess it's something to look forward to doing once we get a bigger house with some real furniture!

Here are my picks for my dream vanity table:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

July in Review

July was the best month so far this year! I had three weeks of leave so I got to stay home and hang out with Joe and the kitty. We got to dog-sit for Charlie and I had tons of time for projects and enjoying the warm sunshine!

These are some of my favorite posts from July:

Local Spots - Denali Brewing Company

On our day trip to Talkeetna we had lunch at the Denali Brewing Company. Joe is a big fan of microbrews so our goal is to visit all the breweries in Alaska before we leave. We visited the Seward Brewing Company on our trip there about a week ago and got a flight of all the beers they had on tap. We did the same thing at the Denali Brewing Company, except we ordered small "tasters" instead of a flight of beers. Their tasting room wasn't serving beers at the time (we showed up late) so we went to the bar in the restaurant instead. The I Squared IPA was amazing! I usually don't favor IPA's but this one was fabulous.

We picked up a growler of the Chuli Stout to bring home with us. Stouts are always my favorite.

Saturday, August 3, 2013


I can't believe my vacation is almost over! It was possibly the best time off I had with Joe yet, since I didn't have to fly anywhere or worry about leaving again like I used to when he lived in New York. We pretty much just lazed around and slept until noon everyday. A few weeks ago we took a day trip to Seward and it was beautiful. We had wanted to get up to Denali but it seems that sleeping in everyday kinda ruined that plan, so one day we drove about halfway to Denali and spent the afternoon in Talkeetna. I had visited this town last year, before my wedding and I remembered it as a hippie town like Woodstock in upstate New York. That time I was visiting for work, so this time was much more fun and beautiful.

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