Sunday, September 27, 2015

So Long September

September, where have you gone?  I can't believe it is almost October; if only the weather would catch up with the calendar.  Since I last popped in here on the blog, I've done two things I do every year about this time when I am desperate for cooler temperatures: (1) have my first PSL of the year and (2) make red beans & rice for the first time to "kick off fall."  Unfortunately, neither worked, and we're still "enjoying" temperatures in the nineties.  We may have had to crank the air down a bit while eating our RB&R, but it was totally worth it.      

Last week, in another attempt to usher in fall, my friend Kylee and I went on a little acorn expedition at our neighborhood park all in the name of fall centerpieces for our tables in Sunday school.  The acorns were abundant, and we threw these little guys together in no time.  They debuted this morning and were a big hit.  I have a slight acorn obsession, and I could not be any more thrilled to have such a huge supply right at my fingertips.  Especially these fat guys with perfect little caps - I die!

We celebrated Austin's birthday on Friday... well Austin celebrated by taking off work and playing golf with some buddies, I celebrated by working.  I did manage to fulfill his request for carrot cake cupcakes though.  Ignore the pink candle...totally spazzed on that.  Thankfully, he was distracted by the cream cheese icing and didn't seem to mind.

This morning we said good-bye to Mary Katherine and two of her friends after hosting them for the weekend.  They were so adorable, and our house feels a little empty without them here now!  MK, Courtney Ann, and Gretchen drove up Friday afternoon and were here with Austin waiting for me when I got home Friday.  We sent Austin off to his football game and enjoyed muffalettas, Scrabble, and Austin's birthday cupcakes.

Saturday morning the girls had big plans to head to the State Fair of Texas and then to Northpark for the day.  How darling are they?

Austin and I stayed back, relaxed at home, and fixed the girls some treats for that night before we abandoned them to go to the A&M game.  The only photogenic thing on the menu was this veggie tray with homemade ranch dip.  The girls also got pigs in a blanket, spinach and artichoke dip, and funfetti cookies for their game watching enjoyment.

Austin's birthday weekend turned out to be a little more exciting than we anticipated when some friends from our Sunday school class invited us to the A&M vs. Arkansas game mid-week last week.  We were thrilled to get to go to the game and even more thrilled that the Aggies squeaked by with a W after a stressful overtime.

Our tickets were in a suite thanks to our friend's company, and the whole experience was by far the most luxurious one I've ever had involving a football game!  Between the view, the comfy movie theater type chairs, the amazing food, and the private bathroom, it was hard to pick my jaw up off the floor and actually watch the game, but I managed. :)   And the Aggies won - whoop for a 4-0 start to the season!    

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Labor Day in Houston + September Happenings

Labor Day weekend took us southbound on 45 to see Courtney and Tyler in Houston.  Casey rode down with us on Saturday morning, and we all had a great visit!  

We got into town just after noon on Saturday, and our first order of business was a tour of Courtney and Tyler's new house.  They picked a good one, and one super fun aspect of their house is all of the huge fruit trees in their back yard.  I was a little jealous of their orchard, especially their great lemon trees!  It is fun to be on this new homeowner journey with them.  Hard to believe we are coming up on one year in our house.

After our house tour, we ventured out for a late lunch at "Jus' Mac," a restaurant that has every type of mac and cheese one could ever want.  It was such a fun spot.  We all loved our gourmet mac and cheese that came in the cutest little skillets.  


Someone (maybe me) thought we also needed dessert, so we found a darling little cupcake shop and had a sweet treat to round our our lunch.  

Tyler chauffeured us around town after our cupcake stop, and we got to see Courtney's school and more of the area around their house.  Back at home, we settled in for a long evening of football watching.  Austin was pretty much beside himself with excitement.  We played a few card games, and before we knew it, it was time to watch the Aggies play Arizona State.  

Courtney and Tyler whipped us up some tasty game watching treats including spinach artichoke dip and barbecue chicken pizza - two of my favorites.  I may have taken a few naps during the game, but I did wake up just in time to see the Ags win.  What a great start to the season!

Sunday morning we grabbed smoothies and went for a super long walk at a nearby park.  After all of our indulging on Saturday, it felt good to get outside and work up a sweat.  Austin, Casey, and I hit the road to head back to Dallas around lunchtime and were back in Dallas that evening.  It was a quick trip but so good to be together with both of Austin's sisters, and Tyler, too! 

Nothing too notable to report from last week, but this weekend was definitely not short on fun, although it was sadly short on pictures.  Friday night we loved celebrating our friend Emily's 30th birthday at a fabulous surprise party planned by her husband, Jaime.  It was a great night for one of our most favorite people!  Saturday we helped Buddy, Suann, and Casey move Casey from one side of Dallas to the other.  I think she is really going to like her new apartment, and it is looking so good already.  Saturday night brought the return of game night with Trip and Lindsay after a brief hiatus.  Trip and Lindsay fixed a delicious dinner (including a pretty epic cheese board to start - my favorite), we played a fun new game (Ticket to Ride - I want to add it to our collection ASAP), and the Aggies won again!

I think that about brings us up to date in September.  This weekend I ordered a few fun things for the house, and I'm looking forward to kicking planning into high gear for Katey's baby shower that I'm hosting at our house in October.  Mom and I had a great brainstorming session several weeks ago, and I am really excited to see everything come together.  I need to post more about our shower plans soon!         

Monday, August 31, 2015

Goodbye, August

Well here I am on the last day of August posting for only the second time this month.  Where have the days gone?!  Bullet points feel appropriate for this Monday morning after over two weeks with no post.
  • Saturday we had a leisurely morning and made brunch before running several errands.  Casey came over for brunch and spent most of the day with us, and it was so good to catch up with her.  Ten months after moving into our "new" house, we finally checked out the local library and rec center.  I checked out these books:  
  • Last week we tried this pasta dish from the September Southern Living and this salad recipe that I tore out of Real Simple recently.  Both were winners that I'll definitely make again.  
  • I should be wearing all my summer dresses and nude shoes one last time before Labor Day, but I'm to that point at the end of the season where I'm over summer clothes and ready for fall.  I've been snapping a pic of my outfit in the morning to (a) help me remember what I wore when and (b) have some type of pictures to use for a blog post.  Pretty pitiful that the blog has dwindled to this!  

  • I moved into a new office at work, and Austin helped me hang everything on the walls yesterday afternoon.  Never a fun activity, but everything is hung, and I'm thrilled to start the week without random diplomas and certificates leaning up against my desk and walls.
  • I am getting super excited to host a baby shower for my friend Katey in October, and I need to blog about some of the plans taking shape for that.  The invitations went out recently, and it is just going to be so fun!   
And that's about all I've got - goodbye August and hello September!  Linking up with Biana for Weekending today.  

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Life Lately

Excited to link up with Jessi today for the fun new "What's Hap-pinning" link up!  Here's a little update on our life lately and August so far:

We went to David and Morgan's beautiful wedding near College Station on August 1 and then squeezed in a short visit with my parents for the rest of the weekend.  Austin did what has got to be the all time funniest version of the Cupid Shuffle, and I have major regrets that I failed to capture it on video.  The photographer's pictures will surface soon enough, I'm sure.  Both the photographer and videographer asked me if they could take Austin to all of their weddings.  I was near tears, but as always, he was a huge hit on the dance floor!    

Mom came back to Dallas with us the next day to help us install the new window treatments she made for our living room.  I'm in love!  And I'm so lucky to have a mom who is such a talented seamstress!    

Last week our friends Billy and Carly were in town for most of the week, so we packed in some fun times with them starting on Monday night celebrating Billy's birthday at HG Sply Co.  This was my first time on their patio, and it was a really fun atmosphere.  We hung out there for a while and ordered some appetizers while we waited for our table.  

We had Billy and Carly over to our house on Wednesday, and Carly and I got to squeeze in a lunch date last week, too.  It was such a treat to be in the same town for almost the whole week!

Last Thursday we ventured to Billy Bob's in Fort Worth with some church friends for a night of line dancing which was so much fun!  

Love these people!

We continued our Friday night game night with Trip and Lindsay at our house and then crashed from such a fun-filled week.  No rest for the weary here, though!  Saturday morning we hit the road for Austin for a party at Billy and Carly's to celebrate the reveal of their huge new deck and to see my in-laws and celebrate Buddy's birthday.

We found our new favorite stop on the way to Austin thanks to the receptionist at my office - Slovacek's in West.  Seriously the best gas station ever! We grabbed some fro-yo there for the rest of our drive, and this is where my pictures end.  Gummy bears + sprinkles = best fro-yo toppings ever.

We had a great time Saturday evening at Billy and Carly's catching up with some of Austin's lacrosse buddies and their wives.  On Sunday morning we enjoyed coffee on the back porch with Buddy, Suann, and Casey, and then we went to church and to Buddy's favorite Chinese restaurant for a birthday lunch celebration.  We were glad we got to squeeze so much into our 24 hour visit!

Our pace this week has slowed down a little bit, but I can't believe it is already Wednesday.  August is just flying by!  

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Summer Slump

It appears I've fallen into a bit of a summertime blog slump (again).  Despite my best intentions of documenting our weekend, I barely took any pictures.  I'll work with those I do have to piece it together.

I'm almost embarrassed to put this on the blog, because it is going to reveal what huge nerds we truly are at heart, but we played Catan (fka "Settlers of Catan") this weekend with Trip and Lindsay for the second time in two weeks.

The first time we played, I literally fell asleep at the table because I was so tired (and the game lasted so late into the night).  But this time, I managed to stay awake for the entire thing.  The Coke floats we enjoyed mid-game might have had something to do with my level of alertness.

Saturday we had a jam-packed day that started at a gorgeous lake house just outside of Dallas.  Some friends from church graciously hosted our Sunday school class for a day of fun on the lake.  Aside from a tubing collision with my friend Kylee that resulted in a busted lip for her and a pretty nasty gash on my leg, we had a great time at the first annual Lake Day.  We hope it becomes a yearly tradition!

 (that is Dr. Pepper, btw!)

We left Lake Day to head home and get ready for our friend Tara's wedding Saturday night.  Austin and Tara worked together, and we both just love her.  She writes the funniest Bachelor/Bachelorette recaps of all time, and even though I don't watch the show, I look forward to her Tuesday emails whenever those shows are airing.

The lake seemed to have wiped us out, so we didn't make it very late at the reception, but it was great to get to catch up with some of Austin's old co-workers and their wives.

Sunday brought church and Sunday school, and then and afternoon of relaxing at home.  Naps, laundry, reading, and finally our Sunday night show -  Food Network Star.  Do any of y'all watch?  We are cheering for Jay and Eddie this season!

Hoping to be back on Friday with my five, but as the title of this post suggests, I'm in a bit of a summer blog slump and haven't been blogging with any regularity.  I do love documenting our life through the blog, so I'm not giving up yet!

Friday, July 17, 2015

5 on Friday - Vol. 54

Another week has flown by, and here we are at Friday again!  Happy Friday to all and to our summertime hostess, A. Liz Adventures.

Apparently the only pictures I've managed to take this week are of food, so this will be a food-heavy 5 on Friday.  Here are 5 tidbits from our week:

1 - We had workers in our house all last weekend doing some repairs, and they finished just in time for us to get the house clean and have our friends Chris and Spenser over for dinner on Sunday.  I'm beyond thrilled that my grocery store hydrangeas are still going strong almost one week later.  

2 - We started Sunday night with cheese and crackers - easiest and best appetizer of all time.  

3 - And we ended Saturday night with homemade ice cream!  I'm ashamed to say this was our first adventure with our ice cream maker that we've had for a while now.  Oh my gosh, so good.  We are still enjoying this and have had some every night after supper. 

4 - My friend Emily gifted us with a week of Blue Apron meals, and we are so impressed!  This was the first meal we tried from our box earlier this week.  We LOVED it.  

5 - And this was the second meal we tried this week.  Equally impressed!  The chicken had Indian spices on it, which is not something I would normally cook with, but we both really enjoyed it. 

Not the most exciting 5oF, but we have enjoyed some tasty food this week.  Looking forward to another fun filled weekend!  Have a good one!

Friday, July 10, 2015

5 on Friday - Vol. 53

 Happy Friday to you and to the lovely summertime hostess of Five on Friday - A.Liz Adventures.


ONE - Summer is officially in full swing, and we are grilling multiple times a week.  I just love it!  Last night Austin grilled chicken for our supper, and we topped it with a little mozz, tomato, and basil for the last few minutes on the grill.  So so good.  Earlier this week we made these balsamic rosemary steak kabobs, and they will be in heavy rotation for the rest of the summer.

TWO - Melanie and I were both rocking white nails last weekend for the 4th, and I've kept it going all week.  I'm probably way behind the times, but I love the white for summer.

THREE - Most nights we are outside grilling, going for a walk, or riding our bikes, but on Thursdays this summer I have been inside watching Astronaut Wives Club and Fixer Upper.  AWC is such a cute show, and the clothes alone are reason enough to watch!  Except last night, I totally spazzed and thought it came on at 8 instead of 7, so I'll be catching the latest episode on demand this weekend.  

FOUR - I can't resist sharing these adorable watermelon pops from our 4th again... they just scream summer.  I think the recipe was tweaked a bit from this one.  I need to break out my own popsicle molds before summer is over!

FIVE -  We are looking forward to a relaxed weekend at home with some fun sprinkled in after traveling and entertaining for the past several weeks.  We have a fun party to go to on Saturday night, a breakfast date with my MIL and SIL Sunday before church to look forward to, and we are having friends over for supper on Sunday.  I'm planning to fix this PW recipe for Sunday night and homemade ice cream for dessert.  Yum!  Happy Friday!