Saturday, September 17, 2011

Playing House

When we bought our home in May we had a list of things we were going to do "immediately" to fix up the house.  After we started looking at the cost involved in making all of these changes the list moved to more of a "once we can afford it" list.  We have also found that we can do a lot of these things on our own.  We painted our master bathroom last weekend and it feels like a new room! 



Yesterday felt like fall in Tulsa.  It was cold and rainy all day.  I decided it was time to take down the seashells and decorate for fall.  So I made a trip to Hobby Lobby.  It was so nice to spend as much time as I wanted wandering the aisles.  The best part: everything I bought was 50% off.  After Hobby Lobby I picked up a Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks and spent the rainy afternoon playing house.

Here are the summer decorations I put away- sea grass, sand, and shells.

New fall decorations- wheat, apples, pears, mercury glass, and pumpkin.

While I was decorating the UPS man dropped off these gorgeous mercury glass gourds my sweet mom sent me. PERFECT timing! Thank you momma.

Recipes from Pinterest

My sweet friend, Sally, invited me to Pinterest early this summer.  At first I was not really sure what you were supposed to do with the site.  But after a couple days I was hooked.  Bryan would say "obsessed."  I absolutely love all the fun ideas I find on Pinterest.  The recipes have been the most useful ideas I have "pinned" so far.  Here are a few that I have tried and really enjoyed:

 Mint Chocolate Chip
 Nutella and Peanut Butter with chocolate and peanut butter chips

Thank you Pinterest for these yummy recipes!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Summer 2011

I cannot believe we have lived in Tulsa for almost four months!  The weather has been incredible over the last week and I am ready to pull out my boots and sweaters.  But I realize I have to post a little about our fun and hot summer before I move on to fall.

This summer we were blessed to spend time with both new and old friends.  My biggest fear moving to Tulsa was that I would feel lonely.  As always God has provided with opportunities to meet new friends and spend special time with old friends.

We have loved watching Lola grow up this summer.  She has so much personality and love to share. Lola is not very photogenic and I am pretty sure she knows it because she hates to have her picture taken.  Here are a few that I could catch:

Boomer Sooner!

Pleeeeeease take me for a walk?

I love to play outside.

Can I go?  I have pulled all of your dirty panties out of the basket for you.

I planted these Zinnias in June hoping they would survive the heat.  They have done more than survive, these little flowers have flourished.  They make me smile every time I walk out the door.

We celebrated Bryan's grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary in July.  They are such a sweet couple and great role-models for a healthy marriage.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Our New Family Member: Lola

Last week we brought home the newest member of our family: a 9 week old Yorkiepoo we named Lola.  She is the most adorable ball of trouble I have ever seen!  She loves to cuddle, play and chew on everything.  We are working hard on potty and crate training.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!  I am so in love with her!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Spring Full of "Firsts"

We have had several "firsts" this spring that I must share:

Over Spring Break, Bryan and I went skiing with his dad and Karen.  I had not been skiing since I was in third grade and I don't think I really learned to ski on that trip.  However, Bryan has been skiing many many times and LOVES to ski.  So I decided to put on a smile and give it a try on this trip.  I will not go into all of the details including tears and promises to NEVER go skiing again.  But by the end of our three days of skiing (most of which I spent falling), I could sort-of manage a green slope.  It was a rough "first" but I think it at least pleased Bryan that I gave it a try.  My favorite moments were spent relaxing and talking with family.  

The Masters are a BIG week for Bryan.  He starts counting down the days until the Masters starting around Christmas each year.  Typically I roll my eyes and find something else to entertain me for the four days he spends glued to the television or computer.  But this year it finally hit me: "if you can't beat 'em, join' em!" So I threw a Masters party at our house!  I did some serious research into Augusta National and tried to be true to Tradition.  I may have actually had more fun planning the party than Bryan did watching the tournament.  This is the menu I came up with: 

Arnold Palmers (of course!)  
Pimento Cheese Sandwiches
Rachel brought her yummy chicken salad
Green Jacket Salad
Azlea Dip
Peach Cobbler 

Just over a week ago Bryan and I ran our first half marathon.  It just so happened to be about 45 degrees, raining, and windy on the morning of the OKC Memorial Marathon.  When we were running to the start line (of course we were late!) I wanted nothing more than to turn around and go home.  It was so crowded, cold, wet, and we had no idea where we were supposed to even go to start the race.  But we had spent so many hours training that we decided we had to start running and everything would feel okay.  Luckily, I had heard to bring a large trash bag to wear while you are waiting to start the race.  Then when you start you can just rip it off and leave it on the ground.  So I brought a big, black trash bag to wear that morning and it was the best thing I could have asked for that morning.  Here is a short recap of our 13.1 miles:

Start: We started running and I was so warm and dry inside the trash bag that I decided I would wear it a little longer.  
Mile 1: Still pretty happy with the trash bag.  I decide to keep it for a little longer. 
Mile 3: We run past OU Medical Center and I start focusing on the many people inside those hospital rooms that would give anything to run this race.  My heart is filled with gratitude.
Mile 5: Gorilla Hill.  Wishing we had trained with a little incline.
Mile 8: Bryan: "Are you ready to take of the trash bag?"  Me: "Nope."
Mile 10:  Shoes are starting to get soggy.  Wind is really picking up.  Ready to be done.
Mile 12.75:  I decide I do not want to cross the finish line in a black trash bag and finally decide to take off the trash bag. Bryan and I pick up our pace and enjoy the last stretch to the finish line.
Finish: We finished in 2:15 minutes.  A little slower than we had hoped, but a good time to beat for our next race!

Our next first:  Our first home!  We will close on our house on May 26th and move Memorial Weekend. I will update with pictures once we move. Yipee!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Half Marathon

We are currently spending a lot of time training to run our first half marathon.  If you know me you know that running is not really my thing.  Growing up a dancer we did not spend much time running.  Maybe a couple laps around the gym before pom practice, but that was the extent of my running career in high school.  I tried in college but was never able to run much more than a mile without having to stop and walk for a while.  Finally, once I started trying to get in shape for our wedding I got serious about running a couple miles.  Then in September of last year Bryan and I ran the Brookhaven Run a 5K that I was sooo nervous about.  It turns out that I had a lot of fun and ran the Race for the Cure the next month.  In December I decided I wanted to run the OKC Memorial Half Marathon.  It is usually the weekend of my birthday and I felt like that would be a great gift for my 25 year old body.  Well it is actually the weekend after my birthday this year (due to Easter) but I am really excited about this goal.  Sweet Bryan agreed to run it with me (because there is no way I could do it without him) and we have a had a great time training together.  I have learned about a lot of things I never knew about running:

1.  You cannot actually eat whatever you want when training.  I thought running a lot would give me a free pass to eat whatever I want....nope.  

2.  Your toenails can turn black.  Gross.  I have a black toenail just in time for sandal season. 

3.  The best way to enjoy a long run is to spend it in prayer.  I find myself praising God for the wind at my back, the legs that can still move, the air in my lungs, and the incredible man He placed at my side.  

Sunday, April 3, 2011

We're Moving!

That's right: We are moving to Tulsa.  I have waited to write about this until I felt like we had all of our ducks in a row and now I finally feel comfortable saying (writing) it out loud to everyone.  Bryan accepted a job at OneOK and we feel so incredibly blessed with this opportunity.  We prayed and prayed for the right opportunity and to come into our lives.  It always amazes me how God lines things up so that you feel at ease following the path ahead.  In the last month we have been searching for a home.  Again we were blessed with two angels in this process.  We have the most wonderful realtor and lender.  They have been so patient and walked us through each and every step of this process.  Their knowledge and support has been invaluable during this process.  Bryan and I made an offer last week on a home that we love.  The inspection went well last week and we are well on our way to owning our first home!  Oh, and I got a job at a wonderful clinic in Tulsa that I am beyond thrilled about.  We are so humbled by these blessings and look forward to the journey ahead!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Holidays 2010

Today is a "snow day" (there is maybe 1/4 inch of snow on the ground) so I get to spend the day catching up on all the little things I want to do today.  Yay!  One of those is to look back on the wonderful holiday season.  It was filled with so many special moments this year.  I think not having finals to study for helped me to get in the holiday spirit extra early this year.  Here are a few of these wonderful moments:

Thanksgiving at Bev and Marshall's home.

 I made 3 different flavors of cake pops for Thanksgiving at the Brackin's: Pumpkin Spice, Strawberry and Oreo.

Obie and Poppy carving the delicious turkey at their home. 

Cuddling with dad : )

 We brought pumpkin bars and sweet potatoes to Thanksgiving at Obie and Poppy's.  The pumpkin bars are a recipe I picked up at Williams Sonoma a few years ago and have made at least once every year since.

Williams-Sonoma Pecan Pumpkin Butter Dessert Squares
18.25 oz. package yellow cake mix, set aside one cup
1/2 cup butter, melted
3 large eggs
13.5 oz. jar of Muirhead Pecan Pumpkin Butter
2 Tbsp milk
1 Tbsp flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 tsp cinnamon
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Grease and flour a 9 X 13 pan.
  • Divide cake mix, placing all but one cup in a mixing bowl.
  • Stir the melted butter and one egg into the cake mix until combined.
  • Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan.
  • In another bowl, mix pumpkin butter with two eggs and milk until combined.
  • Spread pumpkin mixture over pressed cake mix.
  • Stir the reserved 1 cup of cake mix with the flour, sugar, and cinnamon.
  • Then add the softened butter and mix together until crumbly.
  • Sprinkle over the top of the pumpkin layer.
  • Bake for about 35 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Cool and cut into 2 ” squares. Serves 24.
We used the Pioneer Woman's Soul Sweet 'Taters Recipe:


  • 4 whole Medium Sweet Potatoes
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 cup Pecans
  • ½ cups Flour
  • ¾ sticks Butter

Preparation Instructions

Wash 4 medium sweet potatoes and bake them in a 375-degree oven until fork tender, about 30-35 minutes. When they are finished cooking slice them open and scrape out the flesh into a large bowl.
Add 1 cup of (regular grandulated) sugar, 1 cup of milk, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon of salt. With a potato masher, mash them up just enough—you don’t want to be perfectly smooth.
Now, in a separate bowl, add 1 cup brown sugar, 1 cup pecans, chopped (that means measure a cup of pecans, then chop them), ½ cup flour, and ¾ stick of butter. With a pastry cutter or fork, mash together until thoroughly combined.
Spread the sweet potato mixture into a regular baking dish and sprinkle the crumb mixture all over the top.
Bake in a 400-degree oven for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Bryan's Graduation:

Bryan and Joe both graduated with their MBA's the weekend before Christmas.  At Thanksgiving they made a bet for the OU/OSU game.  If OU lost Bryan had to wear an OSU shirt to Joe's OSU graduation and if OU won Joe had to wear an OU shirt to Bryan's OU graduation.  Well of course OU won and Joe followed through with the terms of the bet.  Everyone looks so nice in crimson! :)
I am so proud of Bryan and all the work he put into the MBA program.  Graduating from the Price MBA program required MANY late nights studying and countless hours of group projects.  Not only does he have a degree to add to his resume, but he is an overall more educated person.  I love my smartypants so much!


 Every year Susan (my mom's friend and roommate before she married my dad) comes down from Edmond and spends the day making Christmas cookies with my mom, sister and I.  We have done this all my life and it is one of the only traditions my family has always had.  I LOVE it! The older I get the more I value this special day.  I am already looking forward to next year.  Here are a few of our yummy treats:

 Christmas Eve at Ganny & Pop's. Talon is ready to dominate the presents and Drake is just happy to play with the ribbon.  I love these boys and sharing the joy of Christmas with them!

New Year's Eve:
 We spent NYE with Joe and Melissa.  We went to dinner and a Thunder game in OKC then came back down to Norman to hear Graham Colton at Seven.  We always have a great time celebrating with Joe and Mel!  I cannot wait to see the blessings that 2011 will hold for us and those that we love.
Happy 2011!