Saturday, June 29, 2013

My Wedding Caused Me to Die.

Well, it's official.
I have lost my mind.

You said it.
Last night I woke up in absolute PANIC.
Remember those wedding day disaster dreams I've been having?
Well, last night topped it all.

MY WEDDING CAUSED ME TO DIE.

Ok, lets rewind for a second.
Let me start at the beginning.

My hair and makeup are done, but the decorations are not. Not a big deal. Except that it's time for me to walk down the aisle.  As my guests are sitting  in their seats (not at my wedding venue by the way) I'm on the floor in front of them all, Cody at the altar, trying to fix undone decorations. Everybody is watching me. In my dream I seem to not mind one bit. My focus is getting those darn decorations in tip-top shape!

Ten minutes past the time I'm suppose to actually walk down the aisle, I decide that the decorations are complete, and it's time for me to put on my wedding dress. So glad I finally think I'm ready. I head back to my dressing room, slip my wedding dress on and look around for my dad.
 
Dad? You have to walk me down the aisle remember? No where to be found. I pull my cell phone out of my pocket (cause in my dream my wedding dress has very convenient pockets) and call his cell. No answer. He must be on his way. We wait around for him to show up, maybe he's running late to his daughter's wedding (logical, right?). With my dad no where to be found, we decide that my step-dad and grandfather both will walk me down the aisle, one on each side.
 
The ceremony is a very big blur, and somehow I get married in record time. Well just as the ceremony is concluding, and we're about to walk back down the aisle as husband and wife, my dad finally shows up. (So glad you could make it.) For whatever reason, I leave my now husband to go fix MORE DECORATIONS with my dad. (Those darn decorations!)
 
Together, we walk out onto a balcony. There's decorations needing to be fixed on the floor below us. So, instead of walking down to the next floor using a staircase or elevator, I decide (in my wedding dress) to jump the side of our balcony and shimmy my way down to the floor below. Holding on with two hands, I decide I can't make the jump down (shocking) and try to pull myself back up onto the balcony with my dad. As I try to pull, I lose grip and fall ten stories to my death!
 
I wake up last night in a complete panic! 
My heart is beating out of my chest!
I'm sweating buckets!
I was scared out of my mind!
 
And that's when I decided...
that I've officially lost my mind.
 

Friday, June 28, 2013

Five on Friday


It's Friday!
Hallelujah!
Thank You Jesus!
Oh wait...

Everyday is the weekend when you're on summer break!
Don't worry y'all. 
My summer break will quickly be coming to an end, and all that time off will be missed terribly trying to get ready for the beginning of the school year. 
 
But here's to another Friday (I'll raise my Diet Dr. Pepper high), and to celebrate I'm linking up with Darci over at The Good Life to share what exciting things are going on this week.


Number One
 
It's official! This week I signed my contract for the 2013-2014 school year. Because I started teaching 5th grade in October, after the year already started, I wasn't guaranteed a contract. When last school year ended, I was told I would be asked to come back for this upcoming year, but was waiting on my contract. And honestly, I wasn't going to relax about having a secure job placement, until my contract was signed. And now that it's signed, I can officially start planning for my 2nd grade classroom!

 
Number Two
 
I don't know about y'all, but I LOVE holidays. I especially love baking for holidays. So with July 4th just right around the corner, Pinterest has me dying to try some of those festive Independence Day treats. I'm trying to decide which one I'm going to try this year...

Firework Cookie Cups
Mini S'Mores



Number Three

The "Will You Be a Groomsman?" gifts are done! And I can go ahead and show y'all because I doubt any of them actually read my blog!
 












The theme was "I Mustache You a Question."
I'll be doing a "How To" and giving more details in the next few days on the buckets, but I think they turned out adorable, if I do say so myself!

Number Four

I asked two more girls to be bridesmaids since the last Five on Friday! Ashley and Kelly officially accepted to be Bridesmaids, and I couldn't be more excited. So that brings my total up to three so far.




I have one more very important young lady to ask, but I've heard she might be busy June 7th of next year, so I'll keep my fingers crossed! ;)



Number Five

Cody and I started looking at honeymoon destinations this past week! We have a few different places in mind so far, but we're still thinking it through, and weighing our different options. We've been looking at:

[All images via Google.]

The Bahamas

St. Lucia

And my pick... (Cause it's the cheapest!)

Cabo San Lucas

That's what we've looked at so far. Any suggestions are always appreciated :)

Enjoy the last (where has my summer gone???) weekend in June!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Throwback Thursday: Maci's Story

I wasn't planning on sharing the story of Maci until next week, but considering next Thursday is July 4th (YAY!), I decided today was the day.
 

Meet Maci.
Maci is my adorable miniature dachshund, who means the absolute world to me.

Now if you aren't a dog owner, this post probably will mean nothing to you. And you'll think I'm a psycho and never read my blog again. If you don't like dogs at all, well...

 Just Kidding.
Kinda. :)

With Maci's 3rd birthday next Friday, it really got me reminiscing about the first time I ever laid eyes on her.  

I had just started my junior year of college, and had moved into an apartment with two girls I didn't really know. One of the girls, Brittany (my now bridesmaid), had the sweetest little Yorkie named Jack. I loved having Jack to come home to everyday, something that's always excited to see you even on your worst days. My family always had lots of pets, so it was a comfort for me. Being around Jack made me want a companion of my own, so I began my search.

Nothing too big. (Our apartment was kinda small.) Nothing I had to groom. (Too expensive.) Nothing that shed too much. (Brittany was allergic.) So what was I going to look for?

Little dogs weren't really my favorite, but a girl on the floor below us had the cutest little dog I had ever seen. In passing conversation, I'd ask her about her dog. Miniature dachshund? I heard about regular dachshunds before, but not miniature. Perfect size. Short hair. Doesn't shed much. PERFECT.

Then the goal became convincing my mom to say yes. Although I lived during the week at school, I still went home a lot on the weekends to see Cody. So whatever dog I wanted, it would have to work well at my parent's house. My mom wasn't keen on the idea at first. Dogs are a lot of responsibility. What if it gets sick? Shots? Food? How are you going to pay for a dog? Luckily, I hadn't quit my job at Aeropostale like I originally wanted, so I bargained with my mom. I'll work on the weekends to pay for my dog. She didn't say yes, but she also didn't say no.

For about two days, I would find dogs online and send her the pictures. (Trying to use the cute factor to change her mind.) "Cute, but no. No. Nope. You don't need a dog." Until...

 This.

That tiny little body. The adorable spots. Her sweet little eyes. Floppy ears.
My heart melted immediately.
It just felt right.
I texted the picture to my mom right away.
Instead of the expected 'no' response, I got a phone call.
"You know you're really going to have to take care of her, right? She's reeeeally cute."
It was my go ahead.

Brittany and I headed to pick her up that night.
She was even cuter and littler in person.
She quickly became wrapped around my finger, and that hasn't changed at all. :)

If you have ever been around a doxie, you know how unique their personalities are. Maci is no exception. She's attached to my hip every chance she gets. From her sweet little kisses, to her love for cheese and sticks, she has touched my heart so much in the three short years that I've been blessed to have her. 

 
 
 
 
 
 

Today I linked up with Ady over at When in Doubt Just Add Glitter for Throwback Thursday! Thank you ladies!


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Recurring Nightmare & Bridesmaid #3


There are less than two weeks until my wedding day.
My dress has not come in, or been altered. 
The bridesmaids haven't picked out and ordered their dresses. 
The monogrammed napkins, coozies and chevron paper straws haven't been bought. 
The groomsmen have nothing to wear.
We haven't planned or rehearsed anything.
The cake is ugly.
I didn't invite those people.
 This isn't the place we picked to get married.
And the worst part yet? 
The arbor hasn't even been built. 

GASP.

No, not really.
My wedding isn't even until next year!
So why am I having these crazy dreams that my wedding is going to be a bust?
Ever since Cody and I got engaged last July, occasionally I wake up in a panic that EVERYTHING is going wrong for our wedding. 

Last night in particular, I had it in my head that I was getting married next Saturday! I was so distraught that I had so much to do in less than two weeks to pull our wedding off. One of the reasons I liked having a longer engagement, was so I could plan everything to a science. My biggest fear is that our wedding details are last minute, everybody is stressed out about having things perfectly done, and nobody can enjoy the true meaning behind our day. I guess that's why I keep having these recurring wedding nightmares 346 days before I actually get married.

Brides and wives  - Am I losing my mind, or is this normal?

On a lighter, less crazy note...
Last night, I met my childhood best friend for dinner. I had a BIG question to ask her, and I'm not going to lie, I was kinda nervous.
Kelly and I lived next door to each other from the time I was one up until I was fourteen. We had so much fun together, but caused soooooo much trouble at the same time. We lost touch when my family moved, but reunited a couple summers ago.
As soon as I saw her at the table, I handed her my "Will You Be My Bridesmaid?" gift and she said YES!

Color Run, April 2013
So lucky little me has three official beautiful bridesmaids to accompany me on the big day.

Three down - One more to go
But she might be busy that day. ;)

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

From Our Kitchen to Yours: Buffalo Chicken Pizza


My mom makes AMAZING buffalo chicken dip. 
It's always a big hit at gatherings, and goes pretty quickly. One of the biggest fans of my mom's buffalo chicken dip is my future hubby.

I'm always trying to find new recipes for dinner, and hopefully get Cody out of his hot dog and mac&cheese routine. I've been seeing a lot of different recipes for buffalo chicken pizza, but during my trip to the grocery store the other day, I didn't have direct access to one of those delicious recipes. Craving something spicy, I decided to try out buffalo chicken pizza with my own ingredients and cross my fingers that it turned out edible.

I saw this cute little link-up that Whitney over at The Observant Turtle is hosting, and decided I had to share the cheesy goodness with y'all!  

Here are the ingredients I chose for the dish:

1) My mom always uses the canned Premium Chicken Breast chunks to make her buffalo chicken dip, and it turns out amazing. Honestly, the idea of any kind of meat in a can creeps me out, but in this case, it works out perfectly.

2) Pillsbury makes delicious pizza crust in the refrigerated section at the grocery store, normally by the biscuits and cookies. When I saw the Artisan Whole Grain Pizza Crust, I had to try it.

3) The toppings I picked out were pretty basic. Store brand Ranch dressing, Frank's Red Hot Thick, Colby Jack Shredded Cheese, and store brand Real Bacon Bits. 


The first thing I did was set the oven to 400 degrees, as per the Pillsbury pizza crust cooking directions.
 
On a well-greased baking sheet, unroll the pizza dough and spread out to desired length and shape. Side note: The Pillsbury Artisan Pizza Crust smells amazing! Try your best not to eat the raw dough - cause you'll want to. :)

Once the oven is preheated, place your raw pizza dough in the oven for 8 minutes. (I just followed the directions on the dough wrapper.)
While the pizza dough was cooking for the first 8 minutes, I began to put together the chicken breasts and hot sauce. I used two of the large 10 oz. cans of chicken breasts, which turned out to be the perfect amount. In a medium mixing bowl, pour the DRAINED chicken chunks into the bowl.  

(The chicken breasts are soaked in water in the cans, so it's very important to drain the water out of the cans before using the chicken.)  

With a fork, shred the chicken breasts. Once the chunks are shredded, pour three tablespoons of the Frank's Red Hot onto the chicken. Mix up the chicken and hot sauce until the chicken is evenly coated. 
 
I probably added a little more than three tablespoons to my chicken, as well as some salt and pepper. You can certainly add more or less of the Frank's Red Hot to satisfy your spicy taste bud needs.

Once your pizza dough has baked for 8 minutes, take the pan out of the oven and prepare to decorate your pizza to your liking.
 
For the pizza sauce, I chose to use store brand Ranch dressing. I thought about using Blue Cheese dressing, but Blue Cheese is more of an acquired taste.
 
I really just eye-balled the amount of ranch dressing I drizzled on the pizza crust. If I had to guess, I would say it was about 1/4 of a cup to start. I noticed some areas of the crust weren't covered properly once I spread it out, so I added a little more. I wanted to put enough so it was evenly coated, but not too much to make the dough soggy.
 
Once the ranch was spread across the dough, leaving some of the sides uncovered for the crust, I began to pour the chicken mixture over the dough, spreading it out evenly.

Once the buffalo chicken mixture was spread across the pizza, I added the remaining ingredients. 

I chose to use Colby Jack cheese on this pizza, simply because I wanted to pick a cheese that would work with taco's later in the week. But you could choose any cheese that you like. I thought mozzarella and blue cheese crumbles would be delicious too!

To add some texture to the pizza, I sprinkled (more like poured) real bacon bits across the top. I was so glad I did, because it gave a crunchy texture to the soft buffalo chicken. I used the entire bag of Real Bacon Bits to the pizza because frankly, you can never have too much bacon. EVER.

*Chopped green onions would be delicious as well, but Cody has a strong HATE towards onions so I left them off. :)
 

Before placing the pizza in the oven, I drizzled ranch and hot sauce over the top of the pizza to add some extra flavor. The Pillsbury Pizza Crust directions say to put the pizza back in the oven for 10 minutes or so. 
 
Once the cheese was melted, I pulled the pizza out and it was ready to go!
It's not the prettiest pizza looking pizza in the world, but it tasted pretty darn good!
 

I paired the pizza with a Caesar salad right out of a bag to add a little bit of health factor.
 

We liked the Buffalo Chicken Pizza a lot, and plan on making it again sometime soon!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Five on Friday

It's Friday!
Not like Fridays mean much to me these days since I'm on summer vacation.
But nonetheless, I love linking up with the ladies for Five on Friday and sharing what's on my mind and what I'm loving from this past week!

One


I'm LOVING that Ashley asked me to go get a mani/pedi with her yesterday! It has been over a year since I had my nails done professionally, so it was nice. My little toes and fingers feel so clean and pretty. I even managed to make it OUT of the salon without bumping or denting my nail on something. SUCCESS.


Ashley made her first little video on Instagram while we were there yesterday!
Check it out: Mani/Pedi Video

[Hint: That's one of my "Will You Be My Bridesmaid?" gifts up top! Yay!]

Two

Speaking of bridesmaids, I have one official, said yes, will be standing beside me on my wedding day bridesmaid!


 
On Monday, I headed down to Auburn, AL to visit one of my best friends, Brittany, at her home to spend the night, catch up, and ask her one very important question. We lived together in college, went through some crazy roommates, and managed to still be friends! She moved to Auburn with her husband last year, and they're now expecting their first baby!

When I got there, her new house was beautiful! We literally talked for hours just catching up on each others lives, and finally headed downtown for dinner. (Which was delicious!) We were going to go see a movie, but couldn't justify seeing a mediocre movie for the price. So 8-months along pregnant Brittany, waddled herself into the theater with giant popcorn bucket in tow, and got some movie theater popcorn to take home for us to watch the Bachelorette. Talk about adorable moment. :)

The next morning before I headed back home, we stopped at my FAVORITE bakery in the ENTIRE world, Gigi's Cupcakes, and bought four cupcakes to take back home with me. Yes, I could have bought them back home, but I had to taste an Auburn Gigi's just for fun. :)

[Brittany, if you're reading this - Thank you for letting me spend a day with you in Auburn! I had so much fun and loved catching up. I'm so glad you were the first one I asked to be a bridesmaid and you said yes! I had so much fun on your big day, and I hope you have as much fun on mine. I can't wait to meet Luke, and I know you'll be a great mommy! Oh and... I'm still sorry Maci almost ate one of your chickens. :) ]

Three

I'm absolutely, positively loving waking up whenever I want to! I cannot tell you how tough it is to wake up before 5am every morning to drive an hour to my school. I normally wake up when Cody is getting ready for work, which I also love. With his new job, he doesn't have to wake up as early, so it's much easier for us to spend some time together in the morning before he leaves for work. First thing I normally do is take Maci and Hank out. Hank is our big ole' hound dog that we bought in the Carrollton Walmart parking lot - Which is pretty normal for those parts. Then I help Cody with whatever he needs help with, or just talk to him while he gets ready. (aka. make sure he leaves on time.)


Four

I'm LOVING some of the pictures I took at the wedding last weekend! I finally gave my pictures to Ashley so she can really edit them, but I still love some of the originals from my camera. I had so much fun, even if it was a long day. I would love to do again sometime. Especially with my new lens for my camera. Here's a preview of a couple cute ones.














Five

I'm loving that Whitney, my sister, helped me finish the "Will you be a Groomsman?" gifts! Cody just has to get a couple more final touches, and then they will be complete. I can't wait for Cody to give them out (if he's not too embarassed) and then let y'all see!



There's what I'm loving this week! What are y'all loving this week?



Thursday, June 20, 2013

Throwback Thursday: No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems


I can't help but remember my childhood summers this time of year, particularly on Throwback Thursday.

Cody recently got a new job as a salesman for a company that distributes beer, wine, etc. The biggest name on their account is Corona. As I hopped into his Jeep yesterday to meet our friends for dinner, advertising posters covered his front seat. On those Corona posters stood my young teenage crush, with information on how to win tickets to a free concert.

Who might be on the poster you ask?
 None other than the "No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems" man himself, Kenny Chesney.
Seeing that notorious cowboy hat and cutoff sleeve shirt really got me reminiscing the very first country concert I went to back in the summer of '05.

I didn't grow up listening to country music. My parents didn't listen to it. Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys filled my boombox back in the day. It wasn't until middle school that I discovered CMT. Flipping through channels one night with my dad, we stopped on a video that caught my attention immediately. The song was catchy. The guy singing was pretty darn cute. Who was this guy?

"We were brave, we were crazy, we were mostly - young."

I began listening to country radio just so I could hear that song again. It was stuck in my head! (This was before the days of iTunes after all.) The more and more I listened to country radio, the more and more songs I began to LOVE. Quickly, country music was all I listened to. And even still today that hasn't changed much. 

Eventually, I figured out who sung that catchy country tune, and bought his CDs, calendar, and even joined his fan club. When I found out he was coming to town, I begged my mom to buy tickets! With not much convincing, she did one day while I was at school. I quickly called her at work as soon as I got home to see if she got tickets.

Yeah, she got tickets. And then an email from the fan club quickly ensued. We were randomly chosen to have upgraded seats in the Sand Bar! The Sand Bar? What's the Sand Bar?


Only seats right by the stage that's all. For somebody who had an email address - CrazyForKennysButt@yahoo.com, this was a HUGE deal! Not only was this my first country concert, but that butt in those tight jeans were going to be right in front of my face! It was a dream come true!

We had a blast that night, besides being surrounded by all the strippers from the Cheetah in the Sand Bar. :) My little 15 year old eyes saw a lot that night...But it was all worth it. :)

Pat Green
Gretchen Wilson


I even touched his leg!



And the best for last...