Christmas Decor

As you may know, we are renovating our house so it is not going to be fully decked out with Christmas decor this year because who wants to put decorations on top of drop cloths? Not me! I did put a little holiday cheer out on our front porch, I had to take some night time photos because it gets dark at 5 pm and I don't get home until a little after that:)

I bought these skates at a garage sale last January knowing I wanted to do this. I spray painted them silver, glittered them and voila it is wintery and wonderful. Add some frozen looking garland and a bow and it is Christmasy.

Next up, I filled a bowl with glitter lights! I also have some of these on my desk at work! These glitter lights are made from old big Christmas lights. My mom had a lot from an old string of lights but she also bought some more at a garage sale. Now the old lights have new life!

My family and I made these on Thanksgiving! 

To make the glitter lights you need to mix school glue with water in a bowl, about 3 parts glue, one part water so the glue is a little runnier than usual. Then paint the glue on the light with a brush avoiding the metal part of the light. Then roll the glue covered lights in a bowl of glitter! Next, we stuck the metal part of the light into a piece of Styrofoam so the light could air dry without touching any surfaces like so-

Lastly, as I drove up our street on my way home from work today my hubby was putting Christmas lights up on the tree in our front yard! How exciting and pretty! I couldn't get a good picture of it but it looks cute.

How are your Christmas decorations coming along?

Linking up here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. Go check out these linky parties!

Thanks Christina for choosing my Glitter Christmas Lights over at your Christmas Parade!!


Rum Balls

Oh my word y'all! If you like chocolate and you like rum, then you will looooove this recipe for rum balls. They are out of this world good!

I searched for a good recipe and decided to go with Martha Stewart's recipe. There are a lot of ways to make rum balls but these seemed to be the most chocolaty which is perfect for me. A lot of other recipes call for nilla waffers and nuts so, just know that there are a variety of other recipes out there if you are inspired to make your own rum balls and don't like this particular recipe.

First off, you make a batch of brownies using melted semi sweet chocolate, oh my Lord this batter is good!
Next up, bake the brownies as usual.

Once the brownies are baked and completely cooled, break them up into your mixer and add the rum!

Now, you roll the mixture into small balls and roll the ball in some sugar! I used powdered sugar.

Then refrigerate! I tried the rum balls as I made them and they definitely taste their best when they are cold!

They look like unsuspecting donut holes when they are finished but don't take these babies to work and eat them or else your breath will smell like you've been drinking on the job.

For Martha's recipe, go here. Happy holiday baking!

Linking up here, here, here, here, and here.


Monday Post- List Style

I have a lot of thoughts and observations to share today so, here it is list style!

- My mom and mother-in-law are both so great. They are giving, nice, and fun to be around which is awesome. This weekend, my mom loaded me up with Christmas dishes and a few Christmas decorations before I left Texas. Now we are ready for Christmas:) She would have liked for me to take even more stuff but the car was already full. We also made homemade York Peppermint patties together and they turned out soooo good. I'll do a post about those later! My mother-in-law loaded us up with a fantastic candy box and chex mix.

Matt and I love the candy she makes around the holidays! She also helped me get ready to make curtains for our living room, that will be a post of its own when I start that process!

-I had such a great time going home to Texas for the holiday. The 9 hour drive sounds so long but is really never that bad to get home and back. Every time we go home the people we see are so glad to see us and make it all worth it.

-This time of year is so soo sooo my favorite! Christmas music is on the radio, people have put up their decorations, and there is so much to look forward to!

-When I am driving in a parking lot I always stop for the pedestrians. You that awkward moment when the pedestrian pauses because they aren't sure if you will stop for them? Well, I always stop because when I am the pedestrian I always walk right out in front of cars in the parking lot expecting them to stop.

-In three weeks, Matt and I think we can have our living room finished! I am so excited to show you all the finished project! I think I will look spectacular!

-I feel like December is going to go by super fast, I can hardly believe we have made it past Thanksgiving!

-I pretty much have bought or have an idea for everyone's Christmas present this year. It feels good to have that under control.

-I bought the most delicious yogurt today at Trader Joes, their Vanilla and Cream yogurt. As I was eating it, I thought this tastes so outstanding I wonder how much fat is in this? There is a lot and I reckon that is why it tastes so good! I forgot to check that before buying it, oh well.

-Tonight I plan on unloading our car the rest of the way, doing laundry, cooking beans, rice, and sausage for dinner, and then I will put out some Christmas decorations!

-Thanks for reading my blog! I really appreciate all of you readers and your comments:)

Have a happy Cyber Monday!



I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a day of great food and then we watched football the rest of the day at my parents house! My mom pretty much had everything ready to be put in the oven so there wasn't much cooking Thursday morning, just putting the final touches on everything and carving the turkey!
Dessert table

Two dinner tables pushed together to make one!

Snowman my mom made

The table all set

A few different chairs to fit everyone

Hubby with Frances checking out the adds for Black Friday

My Brother appreciated me taking his photo

Looking out the window

Dad and dog carving the turkey

Dressing and other side dishes

My grandma and great uncle

My grandfather-in-law getting some pie

Mom and dad cleaning up

The table after the meal
I like our eclectic table, we had 14 people at my parents house so we had mix matched chairs and dishes which was fun and cute.

We ended the day with craft time and made some glitter covered Christmas lights!

The day was exhausting for the cats, they had to show off how cute they are all day to all of our guests.

They ended up going to bed a little earlier than usual.




Books I didn't really like

I always write book reviews of the books I've read and liked or loved but, I never write about the books that I didn't really enjoy.

I realized that if someone read my blog they would think I loved every book I picked up and that I never wrote a negative review! I don't really want to write a negative review about these books because I know a lot of people absolutely love these books and I don't want to discourage anyone from reading them. So, here is the list-

The History of Love- I read so many glowing reviews of this book. As I read I just never felt a connection with the story of characters. I thought with a title like "The History of Love", this would be an outstanding book that I would fall in love with. I kept waiting for the story to grab a hold of me but, it just never did.

Room- I didn't like the point of view being from the little kid. It made it hard for me to read and the story made me sad.

The Art of Racing in the Rain- I know a lot of people really like this book but I just wasn't feeling it. Maybe if it had been about a cat I would have loved it.

The Cookbook Collector- I heard about this book on NPR and it sounded really interesting. By the end all I could think was that this book was extremely long and didn't give me much fulfillment. It was a very original story though.


Something Blue- By Emily Giffin

I loved this book! It was a fun read and satisfied my need to know what happened to the characters in "Something Borrowed".

As far as I can tell, Emily Giffin's books are great reads about life and love which I love to read about!

Darcy, a girl that has always led a charmed life, getting everything she has ever wanted, suddenly gets the wake up call she has never had from an unexpected friend in her life. For about 30 years, Darcy has been shallow and all about looks, money, men, sex, and fashion. After a string of decisions, Darcy's life is changed forever.

She can either continue to tumble downhill or change for the better.

This story is about love, forgiveness, finding out who Darcy really is, and the power of friendship.

Great book for those who like girly novels with a bit of drama.


It's Almost Thanksgiving!

As I get older, time seems to go by so fast! It's weird how fast it goes! With that said, I can hardly believe that Thanksgiving is next week.

I'm excited to go home to Tyler for a few days! Back when I was a junior in college, my family and I went to New York City for Thanksgiving! It was fantastic because the city was so festive, decorated for Christmas, and we went to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

I've always watched the parade on TV so it was awesome to see it in real life.

We went to NYC that year for T-giving because my brother and I were interning in D.C. that semester and thought it would be great since we were so close to NY to go there instead of to Texas for the holiday.


I'm so glad we did! It was my first experience with NY. My brother and I rode the China Town Express bus from D.C. to NY for $30 round trip. Love it. I was skeptical that we would actually make it there and back on that bus because  our tickets were in Chinese and the people at the bus station said it didn't matter when you wanted to return, just come back to where the bus dropped you off and you can ride back to D.C.

It all worked out just fine and we got to spend Thanksgiving in an awesome place.

Next week, we will have our Thanksgiving meal at my parents house with my in-laws and some of my dad's side of the family. We have only had three Thanksgivings in my whole life not at my parents or grandmother's house (her house was right behind ours when I was growing up).

One Thanksgiving we went to my great aunts house in College Station. My cousin made a chocolate pie that I was really looking forward to eating but then found out she made it for her boyfriend and I was mad there was no chocolate pie for me.

Therefore, I plan on making a chocolate pie this year so that won't happen again.

What does your Thanksgiving look like? We will cook and watch the parade all morning then eat around 11:30 probably. Then we'll sit around the rest of the day watching TV and eating leftovers. I always enjoy this routine and I'm especially glad this year to have my brother home instead of off in the Peace Corps!

Happy Friday and have a lovely weekend! I am making pizza tonight and as usual will be working on the house this weekend! See you Monday!


Funny Things the Over 50 Crowd Does

I'm not trying to be a hater y'all, I'm just poking a little fun most people over 50. Not all over 50 folks do these things of course and I know there are things us 24 year olds do that they think are crazy. So, here's the list-

1.) The over 50 crowd tucks in their shirt all the time. Even when they are doing yard work and relaxing on the weekend. Even when they are wearing sweat pants and a t-shirt.

2.) When their cell phone rings in church, at a meeting, at a gathering where their phone should be on silent, they jump up and run out of the room to answer it! I know their are times when you may need to answer a phone call but dang, do you really not know how to put it at least on vibrate? or sit at the back of the room and sneak out unheard if you really need to answer your phone? Also, they call their cell phone "The Cell Phone" because you know they also probably have a land line and the cell phone is not their primary phone like it is for me.

3.) When an event starts at say 9:00 am, they show up at 8:30 am. This one may apply more to the over 60 crowd but these folks like to be early. They don't show up right when it starts or five minutes before, and certainly not late! I guess they want a good seat and time to say hi to everybody beforehand.

Have you noticed these things? Do you think they're funny like I do?


Lunch Time Runner

My goal today is to run at lunch time because y'all, I haven't worked out since Matt and I got our house a month ago! I feel like I've gotten plenty of physical activity with all of the house work we've been doing but it is time for me to get my cardio on again.

Before we closed on the house I had started a running plan which I was really liking a lot! I feel like running gets me a great work out for my time. My lunch time plan is to start running at lunch every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for 30 minutes with different running workouts.

I made a mix in Garage Band tonight that has some great pumped up songs to get me going. At two minutes in a bell goes off and I know it's time to run for four minutes. When the bell rings again I'll know I can take a break and walk for two minutes. I will continue this cycle for 30 minutes.

It is getting cold outside so I hope I can stick to my plan. If it is raining or snowing then I will allow myself to skip for that day.

Here's a fun fact, in college, I ran a half marathon with my dad and brother. We all finished and none of us really trained or knew what we were doing. I feel like this is proof that if you really want to be able to run a half marathon, you can do it! When you are in the race, it is easier than you would think to run 13 miles because you are in a pack of other runners and there is a lot of support from the people lined up on the street.

Wish me luck as my commitment to fitness begins again tomorrow!

*UPDATE* Even though it was 40 degrees and I really didn't want to go outside I went anyway! I bundled up and had a great run and plan on doing it again Friday. After about 10 minutes I was pretty warm and didn't mind the cold anymore. I was only away from my desk for about 50 minutes when it was all said and done so in the scheme of my whole day this is totally doable!

Redeeming Love By- Francine Rivers


I have always heard good things about this book and finally got around to reading it. I'm so glad I did!!

There were so many moments while reading this book that I was completely frustrated with the characters and the author! I thought, how stupid can these people be! They keep messing up over and over with the same thing! They are so stubborn! Why can't the author move on!

I realize though that that is the point, people mess up over and over and over again with the same dumb stuff in life. An outsider can tell you what to change a million times but until it finally hits you and you realize for yourself, you will never change.

This incredible book retells the story of Gomer and Hosea from the Bible that shows God's love that will never let go, no matter what crazy terrible things you do. The story is about Angel, a woman who was forced into prostitution as a child. She is so damaged and bitter that she thinks her only way to escape the pain in her life is through death.

Amazingly enough, she is taken out of the horrific life of prostitution she has known for most of her life when Michael Hosea marries her. I thought this part of the story was odd but see now how amazing it was.

I hope everyone will read this great book and if you get frustrated with it or think it is going in circles at times, keep reading because it all makes sense in the end!

This book was a great reminder to me of God's redeeming love for all of us and what a powerful difference we as people can make on this earth by living as followers of Christ. By striving to be like him, we show love, to everyone, and you never know what that can do for someone's life!


Happy Birthday Matt!

For Matt's b-day I made a cheesecake! It was good and rich. Happy Birthday to my cute hubby!


Elk Canvas

I love Elk, Moose, and Deer! I've been wanting some antlers or something woodsy to incorporate in our house. I found an awesome canvas on Pinterest and was inspired to make this!

I chose to make an Elk canvas because they have such pretty antlers.
To make my Elk canvas I found a profile of an Elk on Google images, printed it and cut it out. Then I painted a canvas with the same paint we are painting our trim around the house with and let it dry.

Then I took my elk stencil and taped it to the canvas.

Then I spray painted over the elk stencil and when it dried I removed the stencil.

Boom, you have an awesome elk canvas!


A Little About Me You May Not Know

We all have fun facts about ourselves so here are a few about me that you may not know or may have forgotten about!

1.) In college, I tried out for the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders! I didn't make it but I wore my booty shorts, bra, and spray tan to that audition and gave it my all. Have you ever seen the CMT show, "Making the Team"? I always watched it with my friends and since I was in college in Fort Worth I thought, I could be on this show too! I was on the first episode a few times back in 2008 when I tried out! At least we got a swag bag with lip gloss and hairspray for trying out.

2.) I have shaken Barak Obama's hand, seen George W. Bush give a speech at the White House, and seen Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton in real life 4 times. I get starstruck by presidents and am really fascinated with the people that have held the office and their families.

3.) When people cuss, I'm always a little surprised. I guess I'm kind of a goody goody when it comes to cussing. I usually laugh when someone does it. I only cuss to be funny or when I get mad and say something under my breath.

4.) Every time a siren comes on the radio I freak out a little because I think I'm about to get pulled over. I'm the type of person that thinks oh no, I've done something wrong and been caught before I think I'm in the right. My driving is usually right at the speed limit or about 3 mph over.

5.) Sometimes I feel extremely introverted and walk the other way to avoid small talk with someone I don't really want to talk to. However, other times I feel like, what the heck, I'm feeling friendly, I'll talk to anybody about anything. I think I would still classify myself as introverted around new people though or people I don't know super well. Of course when I'm around people I know well, I can be the craziest person you've ever seen.

6.) I love the ocean and I think that my ideal life would be to live in a beach town and own a junk shop, blog about crafts and life, and teach yoga classes. I would want my family and friends to live within walking distance of my house so we could chill out in each others kitchens and have dinner with each other often.

7.) I have a twin brother who is really funny. He is usually the life of the party.


My Job- Fighter Pilot

I got an ergonomic mouse at work today and it is great! The mouse looks like a joy stick and has been deemed the fighter pilot mouse by others in my office.

Over the years I've spent a lot of time on the computer not maintaining proper form that we were taught in typing class back in High School. The result of lots of computer time has been a chronically sore right wrist. I never thought it would happen to me but it did!

When I do the plank position in yoga it hurts my right wrist and I realized that I needed to do something about it before it got any worse so, I ordered up a wrist pad for my keyboard, a wrist pad for my mouse pad, and the 3M Ergonomic mouse! Am I a nerd for getting so excited about my new mouse?

Thankfully the mouse is really easy to use and is comfortable. I hope I get great results from this mouse, I'll update you in a few months with how it's going!


New Shampoo, Weekend Wrap Up

I'm so grateful for our extra hour of sleep Saturday night from Daylight Savings time. All day Sunday I felt like I was beating the system because I hadn't yet changed the clocks and every time I'd check my phone for the real time I realized is was an hour earlier than I thought!

That extra hour was great for letting Matt and I get more work done in our living room and bedroom! This weekend we sanded and painted the base boards in our bedroom and added quarter round to the base boards. They look great and fresh. The best part was taking the paper and tape up because we deemed this room done with painting for now!

I got to arrange the furniture and we have a cozy paper free room to retreat to because the rest of the house is still very much under paper and drop cloths. FYI, we covered all of our wood floors in paper, tape, and drop cloths so we could paint.

We also worked on our beautiful wall paneling. Matt is in charge of  making this beautiful wall and my job is to fill the nail holes with spackle and cracks with Crack Shot (that is actually the name of the product ha!).

I also prime the panels, and make sure everything is taped off properly! My hands are dry and my nails are short and scruffy but, our work is looking good and we're proud of it.

Yesterday as I was peeling the paper off the floor I said to myself, "finally!" but then I realized we have only been in the house a week! It feels longer and we've already got so much good work done on the house.

Details at the top of the panel

Since I've been working so hard with the house I thought I'd take a stroll down the shampoo aisle at Target on Friday and try out some new shampoo and hair products. It is a simple pleasure but, I got new shampoo, conditioner, detangling spray, and mousse! It made me so happy and I get such a kick out of trying all of my new products. Don't you love that too?

Sunday night I relaxed from our weekend of work with a hot bath and my current book, Redeeming Love. The bathtub in this house has elbow rests which make reading in the bath divine.

I finally asked Matt last night if he knew where my camera was and he did do I will be posting better quality pics soon!