Monday, January 31, 2011


This is what my to-do list looked like for today. Notice how many boxes are not checked off. This was at 4pm. I usually like to have all my boxes checked off by 4pm. The reason I have so many unchecked boxes on my to- do list is because of this girl:

That's right. My goofy big sister, Melissa. You see when she calls me and we start talking and she starts telling me about her new house in Milwaukee, and how she is starting a workout plan in the middle of winter in Wisconsin, and tells stories about her husband who roots for Jay Cutler in playoff games, the time just flies and I forget to clean my kitchen. And yes, she is embarrassing me in this picture.

We have trouble taking serious pictures.

Even on serious occasions.

Okay, we can sometimes. This is one of my favorites.

Usually, I can recover from a long sister phone call and just get back to my chores. But today was different. Today, I also got a phone call from this girl:

This is one of my best friends in the whole world, Katy. You see, she also called me today and we talked for way too long about her culinary work study in Utah, and New York City where she usually lives and goes to culinary school, and she complained to me about her long commute to the gym, and before I knew it, my to-do list was out the window.

If you have any friends that you've known since high school, that still call you to complain about their gym commute, you know what a big deal that is. That other fine lady is my other best friend since high school, Megan. Guess what? I talked to her today, too! But she was driving through a Wisconsin snow storm so we didn't talk as long. Plus my phone battery was obviously dying by this point.

That first picture was from our senior prom and this one is from my wedding. They've liked me enough to stick around for that long, and I think that is a really big deal.

The point is, I barely checked off any of my to-do boxes. But I did catch up with a few of the most important people in my life.

I'd say today was productive.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


There's something you should know about us. We're kind of cheap.

Given the choice, we would almost always choose a barbecue joint with paper plates and plastic tablecloths over a fancy restaurant with exotic cuisine.

We sign up for Netflix trials and cancel before the month is up. We also did this with HBO. And I think some magazines.

Neither of us will ever spend more than $30 on clothing. The exception of course being heels. No reason to be cheap where shoes are concerned. (And no, that is not all of them...)

We still own a tube TV for goodness sake! I don't mean we own a tube TV and a flat screen, I mean we watch our trial HBO on the only TV in our house; a huge, 600 pound tube TV.

Yes, friends. We are cheap. And we're okay with it. And we solidified our cheapness tonight with the ultimate cheap date; a R and Cari favorite...

We went to Barnes and Noble and read books. We didn't buy any, we didn't even buy any coffee. We just browsed around and each collected a stack of books and magazines and plopped down and read them. And every once in a while, one of us would come across something interesting or funny and show it to the other. And we didn't even pretend like we wanted to buy anything!

And you know what? It made me really happy. Because I totally married someone as cheap and content with it as me.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

thank you.

As many of you know already, R is no longer in the flight program. I just wanted to update where we're at. His re-designation package goes in this week and then gets reviewed by a board in early February. His package essentially has his top five choices of jobs he'd like to do in the Navy, but there really are no guarantees or any way of knowing what he might get. The board will look at where Officers are needed then decide based on his skills and accomplishments where they can best use him.

It's been such an interesting past few months. There's been a lot of emotional ups and downs. I just want to take a minute to thank everyone who has encouraged us or asked how R is doing. Our lives have taken a huge change in direction and every time someone asks how we're handling things or reminds us that everything happens for a reason, it has meant the world to us. We are learning a tremendous amount about ourselves and God's plan for us and everyone who has come up along side us in that has been such a blessing. We'll probably be finding out a few weeks after the board where we're headed, and of course, update everyone as soon as we know.

Thanks for letting me get serious for a minute.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

morning glory.

Why was this Saturday morning wonderful? Well, because of this...

I made my mom's cinnamon drop donuts and they were exactly how I remembered them. Delicious! And this...

A homemade vanilla latte. Perfect with warm, sugary donuts.

And because we slept in, watched Purdue basketball in our pj's, the sun is shining, and we have no plans in the world today.

That is why this Saturday is wonderful.

Monday, January 17, 2011

no question about it.

Hooray for three day weekends! Our weekend was pretty much hanging around the house in our sweats, punctuated by a few moments of excitement. And we're okay with that. Some of our moments included:

Watching the Packers beat the Atlanta Falcons! I actually followed the Packers pretty closely this season, so I feel like I can call myself a true fan. As true as a girly girl like me who is perpetually confused by organized sports and who spends most of the game asking R to explain basic rules and penalties to me can possibly be. He wins the award for Most Patient Husband, because he calmly answers questions like, "Why did the coach call an on-side kick?" "What defines pass interference?" "What's a safety?" Hey, you have to learn somehow! And every week I ask a few less questions, so I guess he's a good teacher.

Going out with friends. We don't get out much because Pensacola doesn't really have a thriving night life, so when we do go out, it's a special event. This weekend we went out to help our friend Eric, who was the best man in our wedding, celebrate his birthday. We had a great time with him and his wife Natalie at a local pizza bar called Hopjacks. They have a huge beer selection and little piece of heaven called duck fat fries. They are fried in duck fat and served with a garlic aioli dipping sauce that makes me so happy. On the way out, Natalie and I even managed to talk the guys into going to a dance club! (That's right, I badger R during football games with endless questions AND I make him go dancing... he's the best.)

Last night we went over to Eric and Natalie's for a little MLK Day cookout. They made hot wings and sliders with homemade chipotle mayo. We brought homemade pecan pie (R's recipe). We definitely ate well this weekend.

And today, after cleaning and grocery shopping, I snuggled up on the couch to watch the Golden Globes on DVR. I pretty much couldn't care less about the movies, it's the gowns I love. And guess what? R just sat there the whole time asking questions! "Who is her stylist?" "Why did she go with that off the shoulder Armani?" "Are those earrings Cartier or Nathan Lane?" Enough with the questions, jeez!

Okay, that's not true. I made that up. He didn't even know what I was watching until Megan Fox was presenting and he happened to walk past and glance at the TV. I just wanted to level the playing field. Oh well.

It was a relaxing weekend anyway!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

check it off the list.

Because I'm not working these days, I have a lot of free time. Every day, I make a list of things to do. Sometimes the list has the everyday housekeeping tasks, sometimes it's the spring cleaning type stuff, and sometimes it's watching Jersey Shore reruns all day in my sweats until a half an hour before R comes home, when I put on some real clothes, run a comb through my hair, and brush the Oreo crumbs off the couch. Okay, I don't really put that on my lists, but let's be honest, some days that's whats up.

Usually, I'm pretty good about sticking to my lists, but not lately. Lately, something has been distracting me from my effort to be productive and that thing is this blog. You may have heard of this woman, Ree Drummond, and her fabulous blog. If not, say goodbye to some free time. I am specifically addicted to the cooking section, where she always has these super easy, beautifully photographed, recipes. And they're delicious!

Since I want to be like Ree Drummond and have a fabulous blog that causes people to forget all about their to-do lists, (I'm still a very long way from that.) I'm going to try and blog more about my culinary adventures. I was doing a good job of that in the summer, but lately I haven't been as adventurous in the kitchen and when I have, we've been too hungry to stop and take pictures. Maybe blogging about new meals will make me more inclined to make new meals. And I think someone in my marriage will be a lot happier about new meals than he is about Oreo crumbs on the couch.

I mean, what's one more thing on the ole' to do list, right?

Friday, January 7, 2011

a very merry christmas indeed.

It's been a week since we've been home and the laundry is all done, groceries are restocked, and the house is generally back in order. So, I thought I'd brag about how spoiled we were this Christmas and share some of the gifts we got. (I mean, I'll tell you about them, not really share them with you all... Sorry.) We had such a relaxing and enjoyable time home, spending time with family, meeting up with friends, and even a few opportunities to be alone and get coffee at the world's best coffee shop, Alterra.

We got a stove top espresso maker from Mom and Dad B. I've been making some pretty mean homemade macchiatos with this guy. The only problem is this; a Grande at Starbucks has two shots of espresso and I only get a Grande when I know I need to study or do some major cleaning. This espresso maker is for three shots and you can't make less. So, essentially I make myself super strong drink and then proceed to scrub the floorboards, organize my inbox by date and importance, fold and re-fold all my clothes, then call everyone who is free and talk a mile a minute. The house looks great though!
We have a confession. We're addicted to chocolate malts. R's dad, Dad B., knows this. Mostly because he instilled a love for chocolate malts in R at a very young age. So he gave us these old fashioned malt glasses, long soda fountain spoons, straws, and a really good malt mix. I have to admit, we've tried it already and it's awesome. Just the thing we need for our fixes.

My wonderful husband got me this wine vacuum so I can drink a little wine, then save it for later without it going bad. I really wanted one, because I'm very particular about my $8 bottles of wine being served at their best. I'm kind of a wine snob.

My awesome husband also got me this book, the sequel to 'Stuff White People Like'. (He was so good to me this Christmas!) If you've never heard of the books or the blog, go check them out. We discovered that R is much more white than I am. (Big surprise from someone who think an $8 bottle of wine is a splurge, right?)

I also got spoiled by Mom B. and Mom J.. Mom B. got me a little trial size of Origin's stuff, which she loves. If you've never tried Origins, go to the nearest mall and ask for a sample of Modern Friction, a gentle microdermabrasion scrub. Then go home and use it and flip out about how soft if makes your skin feel. Seriously. My mom, Mom J., got me a little concealer kit from Benefit. R couldn't figure out why I was so excited to get makeup that was all nude colored, but I suffer from a rare affliction of dark circles called "Crack Head Eyes", and it's very hard to find good concealers, so I was pumped about it. My mom and mother-in-law know how to pamper me!

In addition to treating ourselves almost every day to coffee from Alterra, our families gave us enough coffee to last us until our next visit. This is mostly a treat for R, because in addition to drinking $8 wine, I can't tell the difference between Fair Trade, Organic, Sustainable, Mexican Kulaktik from Alterra and Folgers Instant.

We also got some really cute ornaments, including a tiny cupcake pan with little Christmas cupcakes in it in honor of my new found baking skills. (Thanks Auntie Fran!) I would have photos, but thanks to the homemade macchiatos, the tree is down and the Christmas decorations are back in the attic.

We could have gotten nothing but new socks for Christmas and still had a great holiday, it just made it all the better that we got some awesome gifts! Thanks again everyone!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

this might make you mad.

This is a picture of me. I am sitting in our backyard. This picture was taken right now. I am writing this post while I sit at this table in our backyard right now. IT'S JANUARY! And I'm just sittin' here in the sun, with no coat or gloves or boots! I'm even getting a little warm! In January! Oh, and get this...

This is a beautiful flower blooming in our front yard. RIGHT NOW! In January!

This has just been a reminder that the charm of living in Florida in the winter has not worn off on this Wisconsin girl. If you are reading this in the Milwaukee, the forecast says you have a chance of flurries this afternoon. Oh, and enjoy your low around 5 degrees tonight.

I need to get inside before I burn up out here.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

taking the plunge.

Voila! Here she is folks, the new and improved blog! As you can see, I added a little tool to help you subscribe and follow the blog. It's really easy and only takes a minute. Also, the picture in the header is the same one we sent out for our save the dates. Who is the photographer, you ask? Why, my very talented Dad! Isn't he awesome?

R and I started 2011 off right, with a Polar Bear Plunge into the Gulf! We drove to the Florida/Alabama border where there's a bar called Flora-Bama that hosts the Plunge at noon on New Year's Day. It was rainy and gray, but it was a tropical 66 degrees and the water was in the 50's.

It was brisk and refreshing! We overheard some guys at Flora-Bama talking about just how crazy people have to be to jump into the Gulf in January. Well, needless to say, I made sure to pipe in and mention that we've "Polar Beared" in Lake Michigan before. I told some horror stories about the icy water just to impress them. They were impressed.

This is a Wisconsin Polar Plunge. Yes, that is Bango from the Milwaukee Bucks. And yes, those are icebergs.

Yes, those are metal ladders to climb over the ice shelf onto the snow that is usually a beach. And no, we did not actually plunge this particular year. Come on, that's just ridiculous. But the guys at Flora-Bama don't need to know that. I wouldn't want to ruin my street cred.

We are really excited about 2011. There are lots of changes on the horizon for us and we were so blessed last year, we know it can only get better. Keep checking in and we'll keep you all updated!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

a new year.

If anyone is still out there, I have an announcement! This little blog is getting a makeover! While we started the blog to keep friends and family updated on our Navy life, lately it's been difficult to keep up with the blog because there aren't always a whole lot of changes to update. So, I'm switching it up! I will still update about all the news and exciting things that happen, but I'm also going to write about what ever strikes my fancy. I really like blogging and I love to write, so I hope to update much more often now. Also, it wouldn't be a makeover if I didn't unveil a new fancy look for the blog. I've been tapping into my inner techie and I should have the new layout finished very soon! So, check back soon! Until then, Happy New Year!