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Thursday, December 31, 2015

New Year's Resolutions

   I cannot believe it is New Year's Eve and in less than 9 hours, it'll be a new year! Before I get started, I'll just note that this post will be short and sweet.

   I worked on last year's resolutions but didn't actually really stick to them. It happens. You move on and try better next year, right?

   The first two are two of the resolutions I made last year: to try to eat healthier and work out at least once a week and to work on improving my blog. I feel like you can always strive to eat healthier and with how busy my life has been the past 4-6 months, I fell off the working out wagon that I had started jumping back on. So next year I plan to slowly get back into doing some type of working out. There's still a lot going on in my life and I am still in the process of trying to get on a schedule, which will eventually include working out.

   Some of my other resolutions, well I guess they are more of goals, for this year are to of course get more done with the house, go through all of my boxes and bags of papers/ paperwork/ files, and just try to continue to be more positive and get my anxiety and stress level more under control. I think that's somewhat of a good start. I just know 2016 is going to be a busy year and I don't want to set the bar too high. But I also think that 2016 is going to be even better than 2015.

Jesse got me roses yesterday. I am so grateful that fate brought me and Jesse together in 2015 and we'll be starting off 2016 together. 

   Well, cheers to the new year! Have an awesome and safe New Year's Eve everyone!

-Heather

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Weekend Recap

   Yea I know, my recap is a little late but I made sure I got it done before we are in a completely new year.

   I had a blast this past weekend. After I got off work and got home, I baked cookies to bring to my family on Christmas. I figured I'd get them baked the day before so that I could decorate them later or the morning of. And then after Jesse got off of work on Christmas Eve, we headed over to his Aunt's house to celebrate and for me to meet his mom and stepdad and of course receive and exchange gifts. We had a really great time and his mom and I got to really know each other and she really likes me- so that's a plus!



Here's a quick look at the cookies I baked and decorated

   Christmas morning started off early with the dogs opening their presents- ok I opened the presents for them- and then Jesse went with his friend to a shooting range real quick. I decided to get each dog only one present this year but get good quality more expensive presents. To say Gemma loved her present was an understatement. She guarded that thing, cuddled with it, and wouldn't let it go. But not long into me dipping and decorating the Christmas cookies did I get a sense that Audrey had ripped poor Gemma's toy. That naughty little bulldog almost completely ripped off Roo's head (yes, I name the dogs' toys). So I took the stuffing out of the head and took it away so that she didn't destroy Gemma's toy further while I tended to the cookies. The toy is still fine for them to play with and it was still made of good quality chew guard material but when you have two dogs tugging the toy in opposite directions, then obviously the area where the toy is the thinnest (like the neck) is going to rip. All of the dogs have been playing with Tigger and Audrey's presents though and although Audrey's present is a little chewed up, it'll last a while since it is made of that rag-a-bone rope material.

   After Jesse got back and we finished getting ready, we went to my mom's house first to exchange gifts. My sister got her wisdom teeth out the day before Christmas Eve, so I brought over some separate cookies for her to have when she was able to eat solid food again. Finally after my stepdad and Jesse got back from taking a forever long trip to get cigars (my stepdad actually likes Jesse and this is very rare for him to act the way he does with Jesse, which is awesome), we got to the gift exchanging. My sister asked for things like sweaters and scarves since she goes to college near Philly and it gets really cold up there during winter. I got her a sweater from Old Navy, and gloves, a scarf, and a snood from Target. And then Jesse and I surprised my mom and my stepdad with a pallet dog bed! We made them close their eyes and everything while we brought it from the car into the house. After a little more gift exchanging and picture taking, we all went to my stepsister and her fiance's house. We had a great time over there too. We exchanged more gifts, ate some great Italian food, and got to see my adorable twin nephews.





 I'm sure you can guess why my sister is covering her cheeks/ jaw with her hands.


   We didn't stay there too long though because the fur babies needed to be fed and taken care of and we had to go to bed super early. I think I took a quick nap at 4:00 p.m. and then went to bed around 7:00 p.m. and Jesse went to bed at about 5:00 p.m. So why did we go to bed so freakin' early do you ask? Because my mom and her brother (my uncle) had a text message miscommunication about what time Jesse had to be at my grandma's house the following morning in Virginia to go hunting. I woke up at 11:00 p.m., we left the house at about 12:45 a.m. to get gas and breakfast and got to my grandma's around 3:15 a.m. [My sister stayed home because it was her and her boyfriend's anniversary and she still didn't feel good from getting her wisdom teeth out. So she stayed at my house and watched and took care of Tigger and Gemma and I took Audrey with me.] We had to wake my grandma and one of my cousins up because no one knew we were getting there that early. And no one else got there until 9:00 a.m.!!! I was so mad but it's ok because we had a great time. I haven't been down to that house in about 4 years or so? A bunch (but not all) of my aunts, uncles, and cousins came down and of course my mom and stepdad. It rained, so Jesse only went out into the woods for a short time and came back to the house because nothing was out there, it was raining, and no one else went out there to hunt that day.

I put a dog safety vest on her that I had gotten Gemma a long time ago. 

   The day was filled with drinking, laughing, catching up, babying Audrey, and having a blast. I finally went on the back of a four wheeler- twice- for the first time and Jesse got to shoot guns with my cousins and uncles. My family loves him. They say he fits right in with that side of the family. They can't wait for us to come back down and my uncle invited Jesse to go hunting with him at that property (130 acres) and another property next deer season. This is all very rare and it is just so awesome. Jesse and I have never felt the way we do about each other with anyone else and our families haven't acted this way about people we've brought around either. Jesse says it makes him feel like we're a real couple and I couldn't agree more.

   Alright, enough of that mushy stuff. We didn't get back to the house until about 8:00 p.m., give or take, and after eating some fast food and taking the dogs out, we went straight to bed. Sunday was full of errands and then we decided to go over our friends' house to hang out for a little bit and drink wine. The wine was probably not the best idea. My body was still recovering from all of the traveling the past three days and then drinking the day before. Thank God I took off Monday because I didn't feel good at all and my body was done. I wanted to get so much done on Monday, including typing up this post, and practically nothing got done. But having such a fun amazing weekend and enjoying it with Jesse made it all worth it.

   I plan on doing another post later this week or sometime next week about some of the presents we gave, some of the presents I received, and the white chocolate dipped ginger cookie recipe I used to bake this year's Christmas cookies. So be on the lookout for that post.

-Heather


Healthy Snacking

   Snacking is probably one of my major problems when it comes to trying to eat healthy and maintaining a healthy weight. Finding a snack that is healthy, tasty, and fills me up in between meals can be challenging. That is why I was really excited to work with Chomps and try out their Chomps Snack Sticks.

   Chomps Snack Sticks is made with 100% Non-GMO Grass-Fed Angus Beef and the beef is sourced in New Zealand- how cool is that? They don't contain any artificial ingredients and are shelf stable for a whole year! These snack sticks are a healthy better tasting version of Slim Jims. 

 I got to sample three flavors.
 Original

 Hoppin' Jalapeno. This was by far my favorite and Jesse really liked it too.

Crankin' Cran

   Would you try Chomps Snack Sticks? What are some healthy snacks you eat?

   Check out http://www.gochomps.com

-Heather


*Sponsored Post*
*You can read my Disclosure Policy at the bottom of my page*

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Weekend Recap

   Sorry my recap is late! I really thought I'd get this week's recap done and posted on Monday but shit happens. Anyways... oh my God y'all, it is almost Christmas!!! I am so freakin' excited!

   So we definitely did not get as much accomplished this weekend as we had hoped. But ya know what? It's ok. It happens. It's life. And we did get some things accomplished, that counts right?

   Friday shortly after work Jesse and I went to go see the new Star Wars movie. He is a huge Star Wars fan, so of course we had to go see it. I wasn't all that excited but I did it for him. I know I have seen at least the first movie but after describing a few details I remember from what I have previously seen, Jesse says I have seen 2 or 3. I honestly don't remember. It has been a minute since I have seen a Star Wars movie. Anyways, I ended up LOVING the movie!!! Like seriously love, love, loved it. So now we are planning on buying all of the Star Wars movies, scheduling a movie marathon weekend, and we are going to watch all of them. I'm not quite sure how we are going to make that work with our busy schedules but we are going to make it work. No matter what.

   On Saturday, besides it be freezing, we went to Jesse's apartment to go through some of his pots and pans and what not to see what I/ we want him to bring over to the house. Oh yea, did I ever mention that he is officially moving in next month? His lease will be up at the end of January/ beginning of February. So he will be moving the rest of his stuff in next month. We also picked up his microwave and table the microwave is sitting on because on Friday, my microwave finally decided to die. Well ok, it didn't die- I think it might be haunted or possessed. Throughout the week it had acted really strange and then all of a sudden would turn on and start running on its own which really freaked me out and I would have to unplug it while we weren't using it. Then on Friday, it decided that it wanted to continue to turn on and off by itself but not let me microwave anything. So outside my microwave went. I know that it got a little banged up in all of the different moves I have put it through but still. I am sooo hoping there is no ghost/ entities in this house or I'm going to freak out and we're going to have to get someone over here to try to fix that. But besides that haunted microwave crap, we also ran errands, as usual, and I baked. Jesse has been wanting a pumpkin roll since before Thanksgiving and I keep saying I'll bake it and then push it off to the next weekend and the weekend after that and so on but I finally decided to make him one. I have never made one before and certain parts were a little difficult to do on my own. Oh yea and my electric hand mixer stopped working when I was making the cream cheese filling. So off to the trash the mixer went- at least it was a super cheap one. And then I also made brownies. I used these reindeer cookie cutters to make reindeer shaped brownies but the shapes didn't come out as well as I had expected. But they are COOKIE cutters and certain parts of the cookie cutters were more narrow than others. Who cares though? They are brownies and I only made them for me and Jesse anyway. And then for dinner Jesse made the most amazing kabobs on the grill.






 Before

After

   Sunday we had planned on getting the house really clean and for Jesse to work on my mom and step dad's present. Well the cleaning didn't really happen. We organized the kitchen counter a bit and got a bunch of crap off of the dining room table and I swept a little but that was no where near what I wanted to accomplish. The house needs to be cleaned regardless but I also wanted it to really get cleaned because Jesse had talked about possibly inviting his mom and step dad over for lunch this weekend while they are in town. Yea, that isn't happening. The house just isn't clean and ready, so it'll have to be pushed off until next time they visit. At least we didn't officially invite them over, or if Jesse did officially invite them, I hope hope hope he told them it would be postponed. But besides a few other minor things, I think that is all we did Sunday.

   Well, I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! I'm off to go give a little wiggle butt by the name of Audrey a bath.

-Heather

Monday, December 14, 2015

Weekend Recap

   This weekend was fun but so tiring. I even fell asleep around 7/ 7:30 p.m. on Saturday night! Of course I still didn't wake up feeling rested but I have been so tired lately. I could not keep my eyes open for the whole movie we watched (Minions). It was ok. I really liked certain parts and others were just meh, but I do love me some little yellow minions! Alright, lets pump the breaks here and back up to Friday.

   Friday, after work, Jesse and I took Audrey and Tigger to the vet. I was convinced Tigger had a UTI and I figured if I was bringing him into the vet, I might as well check Audrey because she isn't fully house trained and I just wanted to get her checked. Well, they don't think anything is wrong down there with Audrey but couldn't really check because miss stubborn bulldog pants refused to pee at the vets to give them a sample. And we still don't know what is wrong with Tigger. He even peed in the vet's office in front of the tech and he didn't even realize he had peed. He was completely oblivious. But at least he peed so that they could take the sample off of the floor, although his pee was extremely pale. They did an exam, a urinalysis, catheter, x-rays, and blood work. Exam was fine, everything on the urinalysis came back fine except for the pee being pale, catheter went in normally, and the x-rays showed no bladder stones or anything unusual. Not all bladder stones can be seen on an x-ray but the vet doesn't think he has them because of no resistance with the catheter going in. The blood work was mainly done to check his kidneys. In the mean time and in case the blood work is normal, they gave us Proin Chewable Tablets. They are given to control urinary incontinence due to urethral sphincter hypotonus in dogs. So I'm just hoping these are working/ continue working *Knock on Wood*. I got the results back on his blood work today and that is all good, thank God.

   After the vet ordeal, we went out to Smokey Bones (for the first time) for dinner and drinks with our friends. The drinks and food weren't bad but I definitely wasn't exactly happy at the end of the night with the service. The host, waitress/ server, and bartenders were all very weird. They were giving all 4 of us nasty looks. They were even giving me and Jesse weird looks before our friends arrived. Right before we were going to get the bill, they told us we were cut off. Like no more drinks. We didn't get shit faced drunk, we were not rude, we were not loud, and we didn't even drink that much. Yes, most of the time Jesse was the one who walked 2 feet from our table to the bar to get us our drinks but if they thought all of those were his and that he could possibly drink that many drinks in the short amount of time we were there, than they are even more incompetent than I thought. And anytime we ordered a single shot, they gave us a double. I can be loud even when I'm not drunk and none of us were even being loud or anything. It was just so bizarre. What I also kind of thought was weird was that there was only a 10 minute wait on a Friday night. That just seemed really short to me. But it is what it is.

   On Saturday- ya know, before I fell asleep watching Minions- we did minimal stuff around the house and ran errands. We spent a lot of time getting the remainder of the Christmas presents (except 1 left). I really do enjoy giving people presents and cannot wait! And it looks like I'll be on Christmas present wrapping duty while Jesse is at work next Saturday. We also tried making something I saw on one of those short Facebook recipe videos that are super short without sound, instructions, or anything. We tried making tater tot grilled cheese with bacon and jalapenos in the waffle iron. Yea, that didn't work. I mean, we made them but they were a little much and extremely messy to make and weren't like the video- go figure. Oh well.

   Besides laundry and a few things around the house, we went to my mom's house on Sunday. Her 6 month old alpaca, Bella, and her little miniature donkey, Sophia, arrived at her house. So Jesse and I really wanted to go meet them, plus Jesse likes hanging out with my mom and step dad. And I wanted to see how Audrey would react to a miniature donkey (not in the same area- dogs are not allowed in the separate area where the alpacas and donkey are). We had pizza and baked macaroni and cheese and had a really great time. Oh yea, and no one told me my sister came home on Friday. So it was a surprise to be greeted by her at the door when we got there.

 George, Gretta, and Audrey looking all tough.

 Audrey didn't even realize there was a miniature donkey until we had been there for 30 minutes- a hour. The dogs like to sprint towards the donkey and watch her and the alpacas.

 Sophia sitting in the lawn chairs.

 Bella is the little chestnut one in the front. 

 The whole pack, Sophia, Bella, Homer, and Bufford. They get along so great and are always standing by each other. They might even get Sophia a little miniature donkey friend to play with since she plays a lot rougher than the alpacas.

Sophia is off to the side because she was a little frustrated with us. She thought we were going to put her halter on since we had put one on Bella for a minute but we didn't put Sophia's on. They both are not used to halters yet, so it will be a slow process. 

Chubby baby Bella

This last picture is one that my mom sent me of Homer reaching over Bufford to kiss Bella. How cute?!

   Hope y'all had a great weekend! Only 11 days until Christmas!

-Heather

2015 Christmas Card Reveal!

   I seriously do not know how I held out this long for the Christmas Card Link-Up! The Christmas cards were delivered about 3 weeks ago and I just couldn't wait to share them with y'all.

   I never thought I'd actually become one of those people that sent out Christmas cards but here I am. I actually didn't start sending out cards until a few years ago. When I only had Gemma, I sent out an e-card with her on it and then the following year, after I had adopted Tigger, was the first year I sent out Christmas cards.

   The Christmas cards always have the dogs on them and I always order them from Zazzle. I get so excited when it is time to take pictures of them in their Christmas outfits for that year's Christmas card. They are just so freakin' cute! They wore the same outfits as last year and I'm pretty sure those outfits are going to be used for at least another year. If you didn't already know, I ordered Tigger's plaid Christmas tie from Baxter Boo and I made the girls' candy cane tutus myself.

   Well, without further adieu...




Eat Drink & Be Mary

-Heather

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Wine Made Easy


   Who doesn't love a good glass of wine? Whether it be at dinner, while you're snuggled up on the couch watching a movie, or wherever. Now, I'll be the first to admit, I am terrible when it comes to picking out wines and I only like sweet wines but that isn't what today's post is about.

   I recently got the opportunity to work with Vino Mio and try out their new Foldable Wine Bottle. It's an alternative to wine glasses without the risk of shattered glass. With it being lightweight and refillable/ reusable, you are able to just roll it up, stick it in your bag and go (where ever alcohol will be served). And it is BPA free!


   Vino Mio Foldable Wine Bottles are really easy to use too. Just open your wine bottle and the Vino Mio foldable wine bottle and slowly pour the wine in. It is recommended that you first only fill it to where there is about 10% of the top of the foldable wine bottle empty, seal the foldable wine bottle and massage it to remove any unwanted air bubbles, and then you can fill the remainder of the foldable bottle up. I personally only filled it about halfway when I first tried it out.


"Exported From Home"

   I love how convenient this portable bottle is. With having 3 dogs in the house, I am always worried about safety hazards like broken glass (and this can go for people with children too, non-fur children). I'm constantly on alert when I have a bottle of wine out because I don't want the dogs to bump into wherever the wine is and end up getting hurt from shattered glass (and of course I don't want them drinking any wine either). But using the Vino Mio foldable/ portable wine bottle helps to relieve those worries. And if it's just you drinking wine or the person you are with doesn't mind, you can just drink straight out of the Vino Mio bottle. That is what I did when I was watching a movie on the couch. That way, I didn't have to get a glass or constantly keep picking up and putting down a glass on the coffee table and I didn't have to worry about the dogs knocking my glass over.

   And with the holidays right around the corner, this would be a perfect gift to give! You can purchase the Vino Mio Foldable Wine Bottle on Amazon but remember to make all of your Amazon purchases through https://smile.amazon.com/ so that part of your purchase total goes to a charity of your choice like The Humane Society of the United States. And remember to please drink responsibly.

-Heather

I received this product at no cost in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. The seller has no influence on my review nor have I received any compensation for it. It is 100% Authentic.
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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Weekend Recap

   Hey y'all! So I really did have every intention to do my weekend recap on Monday and then even yesterday but it just didn't happen... at all. I was so exhausted. I just couldn't do it and it was one of those times where I knew it was not a good idea to push myself to do it because I really needed to just take it easy. Today I am not quite as exhausted but my skin and body just completely aches but I was determined to get this post done and up today, so here it is.

   Friday night was pretty uneventful since Jesse worked and I just wanted to lay on the couch with my fur babies and watch the new season of Marriage Bootcamp. Did any of you watch it? I am pretty excited to watch this season, especially since Mama June and Sugar Bear are in it! But the Bachelor couple, Sean Lowe and Catherine Giudici... don't even get me started. Did they grow up in a bubble?! I mean, I know I was sheltered and all (and I don't mean to spoil it for those of you who didn't watch the first episode) but these two take it to the a whole nother level. They are not used to seeing women with cleavage showing/ hanging out and people cursing so much, etc.- like really??? It is 2015 people and that shouldn't have anything to do with you participating in Marriage Bootcamp. Yea, I could see how the cleavage could affect it if your husband has a strong wandering eye and is a cheater but to my knowledge, Sean isn't and Catherine stated that she wasn't used to people walking around with their cleavage showing. They are just plain weird.

   Saturday was filled with a little bit of cleaning, housework, running errands, etc. and then we went to that dinner party thing at Jesse's friend's house but it ended up only being me, Jesse, Jesse's friend and his wife. That didn't stop us from having a great time though! The men were outside grilling burgers and homemade french fries while his friend's wife (I guess I can call them both my friends too) and I indulged in a few bottles of moscato and gossiped. It was a great night.

   Sunday we kind of took it easy, or at least kind of easy compared to lately. Jesse put up the curtain rod in the living room that I had ordered. Originally, he was going to make me the curtain rod that I wanted but there are so many things on his to-do list that I made for him and he wasn't quite sure how he was going to make what I wanted, sooo I figured I'd give him a break. I wanted one long curtain rod that had a rustic/ industrial feel to it and kind of similar to the curtain rods used in the bedroom. I know that it needed to be around 120" long or so and that isn't exactly the easiest to find and I was not willing to pay a ton of money either. Luckily I found one on Wayfair that was the color and size that I wanted and just so happened to still be on sale. With tax and shipping, it was only $43.98 and it extended to 96"- 144", which was perfect. But not everything can be perfect. I purchased the burlap curtains for the living room back in early to mid October to throw over the existing curtain rods for the time being. Well, maybe I should have paid more attention and you think I would have learned this by now. One of the curtains is somehow an inch or 2 shorter than the other and just doesn't look as pretty as the other. I bought the exact same color, brand, and size but somehow the 2nd curtain has a defect. It bothers me so much but I don't have the receipt, tags, or packaging anymore and I am not going to buy a whole new curtain. So I am just going to have to deal with it. I am thinking about maybe putting something in front of it so that it isn't so noticeable but I'm not sure yet.

Don't mind the dogs beds and random furniture. The dog beds are only moved into the living room to get them more used to them and the random furniture is being altered and/ or getting new furniture eventually. I still have to do a post on those dog beds and do some room reveals but none of the rooms are completely done yet.

   Oh yea and we also put up Christmas decorations and stuff. Last year, all I put up was the tree even though I had purchased a light rope, two candy cane outside light things, and an inflatable hippo. I'm not a huge decorator when it comes to the seasons, holidays, etc. but I decided to put up some of the things that I didn't last year. The rope ended up being a no go because for the rope and hippo, we needed an extension cord to go back through the fence to the outlet on the side of the house and I didn't feel like having two extension cords. So I opted for just having the hippo up. Then I put the candy cane light things up and I finally hung up the little flag in the front yard that my mom had gotten me as a house warming present. I'm sure next year or the year after, I will buy a few more decorations but I'm still not going to go all full out... or at least not yet.

 I love how they made the flag look bitten out of. 

   And then we put up the Christmas tree. Jesse's mom mailed all of his ornaments that she has gotten him over the years. She started a tradition (I don't know when) of getting him one every year. She also sent us our 1st ornament for our 1st Christmas together. How sweet is that?! For now, the ornament will just have to have a photo of us taken on my phone and printed out on printer paper but I still love it. With the ornaments she already sent and the yearly ornaments to come, I'm thinking we might have to get a bigger tree next year.



These two were a little too heavy for this tree but I really like how Jesse decided to position the Home Depot guy. 

   After decorating and feeding the dogs, Jesse made us dinner. Balsamic tuna steaks, asparagus, and red pepper brown rice and quinoa. The rice and quinoa was ok but I think it would have been better paired with steak like it suggested on the back of the box (maybe I should read those things). The tuna and especially the asparagus were delicious. I don't know what he does to the asparagus when he cooks it but it is always amazing.

   Well, I'm out. I have to continue telling Jesse I don't know what I want for dinner until he picks something. Hopefully I'll get the next weekend recap posted on Monday. Enjoy the rest of your week and weekend! p.s. only 16 more days until Christmas.

-Heather