Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Remember that "Mini Fairy Tale" guy?!

Back in June I wrote a blog called "My Mini Fairy Tale".

It was about my friend whom I refer to as The Fiddler because that is what he was doing when I decided I wanted to meet him. He was playing in a band at this bar called Funky's in Baytowne Wharf of Sanddestin, FL. 

Recently, and by recently I mean about a month ago, he posted a video on his YouTube site of him playing with a guy named, Sharif Iman. Without even hearing him play, you know he is cool because: A. His name is Sharif which sounds like sheriff (who wouldn't want that name). B. He has super long dreads and is a musician (that's two, I know) and C. well...he is black. :) Had to throw that in there. 

Anyways, in this video, the two play a song called "Take Me Now" and instead of me writing about how good it is and how extremely talented they are, you should just watch. 

Especially watch around minute 3:45. That's when the fiddle solo comes in. Whew. I love it.

Monday, August 29, 2011

So last month...

So I know Harry Potter was "so last month" but I still can't get over them... I just love them and I love all these pictures and wanted to share them with you in hopes that you too are not over it. Because I am so not...

Can we say bittersweet?!

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Baking Kick Begins...and the Lessons I Learned

For any of you who have baked something and completely failed can I get a "what what!"...pleasssseeee....

Because... that was me last night. I mentioned in the last post how I was excited to try some new baking recipes this week, so Kathrine, our friend Mason, and I all got to work last night.

Since I am on a healthy kick right now, my first attempt was to cook a Cinnamon Coconut Coffee Bread. It was made with a bunch of decent yummy ingredients such as carob powder (a healthy form of coco powder), coconut flour, coconut oil, eggs, and etc... and everything was going smoothly until I blended the dry ingredients with the wet ingrediants. The recipe said whisk until there are no clumps. So naturally, I got the Kitchenaid Blender, put the whisker on it and "whisked" the two together.

It was then, I realized whisking from a machine and by hand meant two very different things and can have two very different results. What I ended whisking up with not some light and fluffy dough-like substance that I hoped for. Rather, my "dough" was the consistency of play-dough. It was at that point, I knew this was going to be awful. I yelled loudly for my mom to make her come fix it or tell me what to do but at that point all she said is there is no going back. You have to just push forward and move on. So we put it in the oven with hopes for a miracle. Kinda like Shadrach, Meeshach and Abendago from the Bible only when my precious object was thrown into the fiery furnace, not only did it not raise one millimeter as bread should do, it burnt to the crisp. There were definitely no angels in my oven last night. Dang it.

Are you ready to see a picture? Feel free to laugh hysterically only after your sympathize with me for two seconds as did Kat, Mason, and my Mom tried to until they all busted out laughing.  My Mom afterwards proclaimed: "And this is why we just don't try and back healthy deserts. It is an oxymoron. It doesn't work."  I accepted this and moved on.

Here is the damage....

Kat and I tried adding some cream to soak it in...nope. We both though the actual flavor still had potential but after taking a bite and have bread still stuck in our throats five minutes later...we faced the fact. It was TERRIBLE. We then thought we could maybe throw it on the ground and see if it would bounce. We were too embarrassed to try knowing that it actually probably would.

So there ya have it. My built up excitement of finally baking something all completely demolished.

However, Kat and I didn't want to give up yet on baking. And one thing I always wanted to cook were Red Velvet Whoopie Pies. And those we did bake after the disastrous cake and they turned out perfect according to Whoopie Pie standards.  The recipe we used was from Sweet Peas Kitchen.  Here are the photos from our (thank goodness) successful attempt #2.

Pre-Food Coloring

Post Food Coloring- looks like blood. So appetizing, I know.
Kathrine and Mason making the perfect circles for the sandwich. Thanks guys!

Freshly baked! They turned out perfect! Whew!

Kathrine's perfectly constructed Red Velvet Whoopie Pie with
the Cream Cheese Filling for us to share!

  See!! Both Mason and Kathrine look happy and they match the pies!! Ha. I took it as a sign. And if I had a picture of my face, you would be seeing a big smile too!They turned out pretty cute and I have a couple of other awesome ideas to try out with them to make them taste even better and look better. Kat and I could only share one because they were so rich. So I am going to try and come up with some alternatives that make them lighter and less rich. But wouldn't these be perfect for Razorback games, Christmas time and just dye the filling green, and also, of course, Valentine's Day.

Summary of the baking session lessons:

1. Always read instructions twice before you begin and multiple times during the process.
2. Always look to see if something needs to be softened like butter or cream cheese...microwaving it can totally ruin the texture of the dessert. You usually have to let it soften by room temperature for best results.
3.Always use salted butter unless specified for unsalted. (sweet cream doesn't make a difference)
4.Whisk by hand unless it tells you to use a machine! (Very important)
5. Don't try and make desserts healthy. It just doesn't work and its waste of money spent on expensive ingredients.
6. Make fun of yourself when you fail miserably.
7. Have friends and family there for moral support, just in case.

Happy Monday!! 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

5 Things I Love and... some personal info.

For being 'jobless', I sure have been a very busy girl lately.

I am working "part time" at this clothing stores in the Heights called Kristen Chase. It is a fun, little designer boutique and it definitely feeds my "wanna be a fashion guru" side. However, I say "part time" because I really have been working non-stop, full time for the most part.  Even though I only started in August,  I am now the oldest person here because the other girls I worked with left to go to school. So now, I am the 'most experienced' one at the store which means I work the most. However, I am not complaining. I like to stay busy and I also like the paycheck. :)

Last week, however, I filled in for my sister, Abby, at her job while she went back to Florida for a week with her boyfriend and his family. Yes, I know, I am good sister. I worked every day the chiropractor (Natural State Chiropractor) and every hour I wasn't there, I was back at Kristen Chase. It was crazy. 

I have started going to the chiropractor regularly now. I didn't even know that I had any spinal issues. I was the only one in my family who didn't have any complaints or pain but Dr. Bishop (my chiropractor) wanted to scan me anyways. Turns out, my top two neck bones are fused together, my neck is curved in the opposite direction, and I have border-line scoliosis. Awesome, right? My neck is worst than my Dad's and if you know you my Dad, you know he can barely even turn his neck to the left or right due to arthritis. We try not to make fun too much but sometimes we can't help it. He looks a little like Frankenstein when he tries to move/ turn any direction. 

Anyways, I have a new found passion for chiropractic work and I think everyone should go. Yes, EVERYONE. I have a whole schpeel as to why but I will save that for later.

Okay there is a lot more to tell but I don't really know if it is worth sharing because bottom line, you have a life to get back too and don't have time to sit and read the boring details of my life. :)

But just for fun, here are some things I have fallen in love with lately (besides the chiropractor) and I think you should fall in love with them too....

1) Almond Butter with Celery Sticks. (as a part of this chiropractic thing, I have been trying to eat a lot healthier because...well...if I explain it... I will ramble on with the schpeel I promised for later. I know you can't wait. But I just am because I need too.) 

I usually eat it with apples, celery, or add a teaspoon to a morning smoothie as a great addition. Here is a way to make it homemade since it is not cheap in the store. (Homemade Organic Almond Butter)

 2. Jeans Shorts

I bought both of these pairs of jeans shorts this summer and I am in love with both of them. The Hudson's are absolutely perfect with any top from a silk top and pumps to my personal favorite, a t-shirt and converse. The Joe's are great also for a casual outfit and are super comfortable and not so short. I have another pair that I cut off myself in attempts to "get rid of some of my jeans" as my mom told me I should. Ha. So sneaky.  Bottom line, they aren't necessarily cheap but they are totally worth it. In my opinion, jeans can make or break an outfit.

My mom picked up this cookbook for me and it is like my new favorite book. Just kidding, but seriously.  The author, Erin Bolger, writes down comical stories of her dating life that almost every girl can identify with and then gives a recipe to match the story. (ex: My Mom Didn't Like You Anyway's Cupcakes) I love love love it. And because of it, I am now obsessed with baking again. However, due to my health kick, I have yet to attempt the recipes. That will change this week and I will let you know how they turn out. But seriously, this is a perfect gift for any single friend of your's or even for yourself. :) 

4. Style Mint. This is Mary Kate and Ashley Olson's new t-shirt line they just started. If you go to the website, they do a mini-quiz to personalize your style.  Then they give you the top four picks and you can choose which ones you like. All shirts are $29.99 so you will not be breaking the budget and they look super comfortable and cute. I am going to buy one today, hopefully. The system they have for it is pretty cool. If you want to know more, just go look at the website! :)

I think I may be a little behind on the times but I have recently fell in love with this website and the concept of it. You can browse the web, "pin" the items, pictures, ideas, or things that you love and it will automatically go to your pinterest site for you and your followers to see. It is perfect for me when I don't have time to blog and it is also a great place to tag things I don't have time to look at but want to later!! You should join and then follow me. I think you can just search my full time. I think....

Anyways, that's all for now! Have a great Saturday and if I haven't seen you recently, just know that I miss you. I miss all my friends today for some reason! 


Thursday, August 4, 2011

My Trip to Minneapolis

So in case you didn't know (not like you really care, ha), but I went to Minneapolis on Monday.

One thing I have always wanted to do is become a flight attendant. I applied for an airline that flies out of Minneapolis called Sun Country and I ended up being invited to an open house, group interview session. I got the invitation at the beginning of last week. I talked with my mom about it and after she talked to her best friend, I ended up with a buddy pass (airline thing) to fly up there. My mom's best friend works for Delta so I pretty much got a cheap ticket up and back there. I was so thankful for her.

While I was up there, I stayed with my cousin, Ellisun, and her husband, Bryan. This is them to the right. I know, such a hot couple, right?

Anyways, they are pretty much the best. I called them on Sunday and said, "Hey, I am coming to visit. Want to take me in for three days, feed me, and cart me around?" And not only did they say yes to that without hesitation, Ellisun, who works at Target Headquarters, set up two meetings for me with two of her co-workers. I was thrilled!! She is seriously the best and I had so much fun spending time with these two!

Anyways, Tuesday, I had the actual interview. It went pretty good. I felt very independent all day long and it was an exciting adventure exploring downtown Minneapolis. I had to be at the Embassy Suites by the airport by 8:45AM which means I was up at 6:00 AM.  Ellisun dropped me off downtown and then I had to take this thing:

The Light Rail!! I had to buy an all day pass and ride it to the interview. That thing below is the map of the light rail with the stops I made marked off from one to four. 

After the interview though, I decided that since I was so close already, I would just go The Mall of America.  I went into a couple stores but like I said, you know you suck at shopping when you walk out of The Mall of America with nothing purchased except for a meal at:

and a bottle of Diet Coke: 

Anyways, that was the big part of my Tuesday. On Wednesday, I met with the two people from Target. Both of those meetings went really well and I am so glad I had the opportunity to meet with them. After those meetings, Ellisun and I went to lunch on the main shopping street downtown called Nicollet Street. It is a really fun area that is great for people watching. Because it was so beautiful outside, we decided  to eat on the patio of this place called McCormick & Schmick's. It was super yummy. 

Oh but the three issues of the day:
1. Silk shirt + beating down sun rays= wet silky shirt. Gross.
2. New Hudson Jeans + bought a size too big= faulty zipper. Guys. It kept falling down all day. The first time I realized it, I was so embarrassed because I thought it had been like that all morning, but then I realized it kept happening. Thank the Lord that my shirt was long enough, so you never could really tell. 
3. Trying to be fashion forward and wearing high heel shoes all day long= long, painful walks and blisters. 

The rest of that day I shopped a little at Saks Fifth Avenue, hung out with my cousin Taylor who showed me the more younger side to Minneapolis, and then went to another place for Happy Hour with Ellisun and Taylor at this place called The Local which has my favorite Irish Cider ON TAP and I didn't even realize it until after I ordered a Fat Tire. BIG MISTAKE. I mean, Fat Tire is good but not nearly as good as Magners, especially on tap. What. ev. er.

Then, probably the best part of the trip was the fact that I was reunited with my best friend, Jen Veach, from when I lived up there in the 3rd and 4th grade. Oh my gosh, it was like not one day had passed. We ate in this area called Uptown, which if you are familiar with Little Rock, is like the Hillcrest of Minneapolis, but if you are not, it just this really fun area with a lot of restaurants and bars.  We ate dinner at a restaurant called Il Gatto.We shared a yummy salad and a Marguerite Pizza. We also made friends with a our waiter, Spencer. He was the best. 
Picture of Uptown
Afterwards, she wanted to show me around town and even though I had a 4AM wake up call for the flight home, I said "Yes, please!"  We only went to two place after Il Gatto and they were super fun. The first place was called Stella's and it has the highest roof top bar in Minneapolis. Below is a view from the top that we got to witness and then a picture of the actual bar.

 For your convenience, I circled exactly where we were sitting. :) You're welcome. 

Here is a picture of Jen and I at Stella. We met some new friends who were fun to get to know. I can't help it, I just fit in the north better. 

After Stella, we went to a placed called Williams. The best part about that was a I got to see some other old friend from when I used to live up there. It was so fun and they were so shocked to see me!  The first reaction one of them had was: "Oh my gosh, I had the hugest crush on you and you always had WarHeads".  And this, my friends, is true. I always had WarHeads and I was the Queen at not making a face. Him and I, in fact, were the King and Queen of it. It was ridiculous. Did you guys do that too? I hope so. They are such good memories. 
Anyways, we celebrated two birthdays over the course of the rest of the night and it was just so fun. I loved spending time with them and I loved seeing this other side of Minneapolis. I really can picture myself there so we will see where the Lord takes me. You never know but I will pray big and get to work. 

I hope you guys have had a great week and have an awesome weekend!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I wanna be a 64-Color box!

Life is like a box of crayons. Most people are the 8-color boxes, but what you're really looking for are the 64-color boxes with the sharpeners on the back. I fancy myself to be a 64-color box, though I've got a few missing. It's ok though, because I've got some more vibrant colors like periwinkle at my disposal. I have a bit of a problem though in that I can only meet the 8-color boxes. Does anyone else have that problem? I mean there are so many different colors of life, of feeling, of articulation. So when I meet someone who's an 8-color type I'm like, hey, magenta! and they're like, oh, you mean purple! and they go off on their purple thing, and I'm like, no - I want magenta! - John Mayer

Monday, August 1, 2011

I get to ride in a plane today!

I am leaving on a jet plane this afternoon. 

This will be the first time I have flown since I flew back from Ireland in the fall of 2009.  

It has been.

But, I am excited. The whole trust and jump thing I was talking about...yeah, it is happening today. 

I'm ready. I think. 
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