Monday, August 15, 2011

OH... Back to SCHOOL.

Today was my first day of Dental Hygiene school!!! :)

 

Rockin' scrubs and tennis shoes all day really AIN'T BAD y'all! :)

But carrying all this crap around was... I think I am going to have to become an official dork and purchase a rolly...
On second thought, I might just have to break my back before I can resort to that ... yuk!

The weekend before last... [gosh, I'm jus catchin up...] The class of 2012 threw all of us newbies a Dental Hygiene School Welcome BBQ. Below is my "big sister" Jennifer and I. She will be like my mentor throughout the first year.... She's super sweet and I've known her for a while. Jennifer works as a dental assistant at the dentist I go to, and we have taken a few classes together in the past. Glad she got assigned to me!


And here are some of my fellow newbies... It was quite hilarious when the instructors were calling us Freshman's today. Freshman? Are you kidding me? We have all been busting out 4.0's to get into this program! Craziness I TELL YOU!


There are 22 students in my class and somehow there are 3 Amy's. Why couldn't my mom have given me my sisters "cool" name.... Chloe Grace Isabelle.... she even got a second middle name!! I've always been a little jealous. Amy is so mainstream.

I have a feeling Dental Hygiene school will be a lot different from what I have been doing. It almost feels like a sorority... I will be spending A LOT of time with these 22 people over the next 2 years. Everyone seems so nice; I cant wait to really get to know all of them!

OH...

I also got back to work today... even though I'll only be working 12 hours a week, I am glad I didn't quit entirely. I don't want to feel guilty for spending a little cheese here and there. So this is my remedy... 12 hours a week = no guilt. LOL.

Off to study.... Hope you all had an amazing weekend!! CIAO.
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Monday, August 8, 2011

Meal Planning... Do you do it?


It may seem a bit boring, but if you want to...

a. save money
b. take out the guess work on "whats for dinner?"
c. save time
d. impress your husband
&
e. have more QT with your fam

...then you should be planning out weekly meals.
  

[from: Google images]
At our house, we try to stick to a budget of $100 weekly for groceries. And we try to eat healthy, always...

Without meal planning our budget + healthy eating goes out the window pretty quickly... Since we, well maybe I should say I :)... started planning out our weekly meals we have had no problems staying within budget & have even avoided the fast food joints for the most part.

 Plus, its so nice to wake up and already know what you will be having for dinner- with no grocery pit stops on the agenda. :)

There are probably tons of ways to get a plan together... mine is pretty simple and to the point.

I first dig through my cookbooks, or browse for recipes online. A few sites I love...
www.allrecipes.com
www.kraftfoods.com
www.delish.com
www.realsimple.com

I pick 6 recipes that I know my husband and I will both like, then compile a list of ingredients minus the items I already have. I add in a few snack items, breakfast stuff, lunch stuff, toiletry stuff... and I'm off to the grocery store.

Couponing prior would be wonderful as well... but I just haven't found time to clip or search. Maybe someday!

I then post up a little list on the fridge so the hubby knows whats up, and I'm done.

I get to come home, have everything I need to prepare dinner, make dinner, and enjoy it with my man!


[from: Google images]
Try it out if you aren't already on board. I think you will be pleasantly surprised how simple planning can be such an incredible time and stress saver.
CIAO luvs.

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Sunday, August 7, 2011

mmmMMmmm Fruit Pizza

Over the weekend I made one of my favorite summer recipes….

Fruit Pizza.

This recipe is always a hit…

I should warn you though… if you make it, you need to get rid of it ASAP. It is ridiculously addicting, one piece leads to two and two to three …. etc.

So lets get to the recipe! If you know me, you know I like easy stuff. (that sounds bad huh? ha!) … this recipe is no exception. It’s so darn easy!

Ingredients:

2 Rolls of sugar cookie dough

2 12oz. Packages of whipped cream cheese

About a cup of powdered sugar

3/4 cups of strawberries, sliced

1 Kiwi, sliced and halved

1 Peach, sliced

1/2 cup of blueberries

Preheat your oven at 350. Roll out 1 1/2 packages of sugar cookie dough onto a 15in. pizza pan [You may do a 12in. with about 1 roll of cookie dough]. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden. Let cool for about 20 minutes.

Your giant cookie should come out looking similar to this.

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While your giant cookie cools, mix the cream cheese and powdered sugar together. I normally use about a cup of powdered sugar, but you wish to make the “pizza sauce” sweeter, add a bit more.

Once the cookie has cooled, slather on the sauce.

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Then add the fruit. You may use any kind of fruit you please. Sometimes I throw in halved raspberries and mandarin oranges in place of the peaches.

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Chill for 30min. to and hour and ENJOY!

I don’t like to waste, so with the remaining cookie dough I made mini fruit pizzas… these went to the neighbors! [Cooking time changes to about 10min. 4 these.]

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Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!! :)

CIAO

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Friday, August 5, 2011

Finding Joy in Simple Things

A simple list of simple things that have brought joy into my life lately… [In no particular order]

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A gift of fresh tomatoes from our neighbors garden.

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A day old lil’ Evellyn, who kept playing like she was asleep… I caught her peeking at me out of one eye several times… So precious. Congrats Mr. & Mrs. Nelson!!

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My big ol’ baby catchin’ ZZZzzzZZZ’s on the couch.

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Coming home to a delivered box of goodies on the front porch. Ha… I knew it was just my text books, but I was still so excited to rip that thing open! Smile

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A not so crowded beach day spent with one of my besties and her lil’ Yorkie.

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A frozen yogurt treat from the newly open BrrrBerry Frozen Yogurt Bar… Jacksonville  NC is moving up in the world. :D

Game night with the neighbors…

Image from Google Images
Sleeping in!!

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& homemade dinners shared with the hubby!

What simple things have you found joy in lately?? Please share!
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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Wake Me Up PLEASE!

To all of you morning runners out there.... What motivates you to get up and keep going throughout your morning runs???

I have tried to run in the morning everyday this week...... and each day I end up looking like this on the side of the road.

From: Google Images

My problem is not so much getting out the door, its staying out and running the distance that I had set out to.

I dont enjoy running in the morning, I feel like I fatigue way faster... and it seems like I have tried everything to switch it up.

I have ate some mornings, then others tried not eating... still not enough energy to keep me going.I have tried drinking coffee, and even took some of my husbands pre-work out junk.... still not enough energy to get me through it.

I get enough sleep. I just dont get why I cant push myself in the mornings like I do in the evening. You would think I would have far more energy to push myself in the mornging vs. at night after a long day at work.
Its sooo frustrating.
 Is it all in my head? Am I just making up excuses??? Please, be honest.

Any tips would be much appreciated!!!!!!

Beach bound 4 now.... Catch up with y'all later!
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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

TIME

....
I've got a bit of it to spare over the next 2 weeks.

For me, this means DIY Projects...
&
well, the beach... but we are going to leave that part out for now. :)

 There are so many great DIY ideas that I have stumbled onto lately- I cant wait to get to work!

PLUS, a friend of ours has asked me to design a room for them. EXCITING! I will definitely be posting some before and after shots once I dive in.

As for the DIY projects I plan on tackling over the next few weeks- check em out below.
...

An embroidered Map.

From: maryruffle.tumblr.com

I love this idea.
We still have a blank slate above our bed... I had planned on doing a picture collage, but just haven't got to it yet. When I saw this I knew this would be perfect to throw into the mix. + I am hoping it will get me off my rear to finish that space!!

 I plan to copy cat this idea and place the heart around where M. and I are from, frame it, and hang it in with some other misc. framed DIY items, photos, mirrors, trinkets. 
...

A new wine cork dining room centerpiece.

hurricaine-candle-centerpiece
From: younghouselove.com

I will finally get to put all of the wine corks I've been saving to use!
 I plan on picking up a few different sized hurricane vases, some cheap pillar candles, and a table runner. Cant wait to get rid of that fake plant that's currently on the table!
...

&
Since I have soo many wine corks I want to do a "Y" like this below. I'll probably hang it in the kitchen since its wine themed... but I think it would look good anywhere in the house.

» Monogram Letter – Recycled Wine Corks - Green is Universal ReUser's Guide
From: greenisuniversal-reuse.com

Not sure how they did this but I'm going to see if our local craft store has any already cut out wood letters. I thought about stenciling on cardboard and using that as the base, but that might have been too flimsy to hang on the wall.... hmm. Maybe I'll jus lay it on the counter or place it above the cabinets.
....

Pix to come on all of these lovely DIY's. Hopefully good ones. :) Wish me luck!

Thanks to my g/f Tami @ Little Moments Like This for informing me on Pinterest.com, so many great DIY ideas. If you want in on some check out the site. Super cute.
I also go to younghouselove.com and designsponge.com for inspiration. Great DIY sites as well.

Hope you all are having a fab week!
CIAO!

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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Peel & Eat

Crawfish boil? Yea… been to one of those. Crab boil? Yep… tried that. Shrimp boil? HHMMmm never even been invited to one those. Smile

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We live on the coast of North Carolina where you can get your hands on fresh shrimp any day, anytime…  SO I thought- hmm wouldnt it would be fun to throw a shrimp boil at the casa for OLD ASS-Hubby’s Birthday??! [I love giving him a hard time ha] I’ve been planning it out for a couple of weeks… & on Saturday we made it happen!

Throwing a shrimp boil is really SO EASY, I definitely didn’t need weeks to plan. A day in advance would have done just fine.

We found several recipes online -since they all sounded amazing, we decided to merge a few of them together…

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Here's how it went down.

We bought 10 lbs of shrimp from a local shrimp shack, cut all of their heads off and let them marinade in 1/2 a thing of Old Bay seasoning and H2O… We were pushed for time so they only ended up marinating for about 4 hours.

That was about the hardest part, well next to peeling the garlic. Piece of CAKE!

We filled a turkey fryer w/ strainer basket 2/3 of the way full with water. Added two Zatarain’s Crawfish, Shrimp, Crab Boil Bags, 1/2 a bottle of Zatarain’s Shrimp & Crab Oil, 1/2 a thing or Old Bay Seasoning, about 3/4 cup of salt, and 3 bulbs of peeled garlic…

Let all that goodness come to a boil… then added a bag of red potatoes- boiled those about 8 minutes, added a package of halved frozen corn on the cobs- boiled another 6 minutes, added 2 packages of kielbasa (cut in 2in pieces)- boiled for another 8 minutes or so, then threw in 4 large onions (cut in wedges) and squeezed 3 lemons (halved) tossed those into the pot- boiled for another 2 minutes, then added as much shrimp as we could fit, and let those boil until pink- about 4-5 minutes or so.

We then pulled out the basket and shook it out across a crowded brown paper covered table. [next time I’ll use freezer paper]

Since we couldn’t fit all the shrimp in on the 1st go around, we did the rest of the batch afterwards. It ended up working out perfect though- as the 1st batch went missing, out came the second… this time shrimp only.

10lbs. fed 17, no problem.

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I think its safe to say everyone had a great time… As for the Birthday Boy… well, he might have had a little bit too much of a great time. lol – Here he is in 3D glasses he just happened to find from outer space randomly. Ridiculous! haha

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Hope you all had a fun weekend!
Today was my last day full time… I’m so excited to do NOTHING! AHHH… heaven!! Smile
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