Tuesday, September 30, 2014

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Last night I made my first homemade meal and all I have to say is that I rock. Blake's grandma was even confused thinking that I haven't been cooking for the past 3 months, but this is the first time that I actually cooked from a recipe that wasn't on the back of a box. Yay, me!

I wanted to do something simple, didn't require too much prep work and that was a good step for homemade cooking. This is the recipe that I followed and it was delicious! Definitely will be making this again.

BBQ Chicken Pizza (via Just a Taste)
  • Pillsbury Pizza Crust
  • Cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup of Sweet Baby Ray's Honey Barbeque Sauce
  • 1/3 cup of chopped onions
  • 1 cup cubed chicken
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Chopped Spinach for garnish

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until 1/4 inch in thickness. Sprinkle the cornmeal onto a cooking sheet and lay the rolled out dough onto the cooking sheet.

Spread 1/2 of the 1/2 cup of barbeque sauce (1/4 cup) onto the dough. I like my pizza to be very saucy so I used a little more than 1/4 cup. You can adjust however you would like.

Toss the cooked chicken with the remaining 1/4 cup of barbeque sauce. 

Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top of the barbeque sauce on the dough. Use as liberally or heavily as you choose. Ours was a little heavy on the cheese. On top of the cheese, spread out the chicken evenly throughout the pizza. Sprinkle the chopped onions throughout the pizza. And if you're my husband, move the onion pieces off of 'his corner' of the pizza. Sprinkle more cheese on top.

Ain't that a pretty, delicious sight?

Bake pizza for 10-12 minutes, rotating half way through until edges are golden brown.

Pour yourself a glass of wine while waiting, of course.

Upon removing the pizza from the oven, garnish with chopped spinach (or use cilantro), slice and serve to your very hungry husband.

Looks good, right??

I gotta say, I am super happy with how it turned out. And I will definitely be making it again. Probably next time I'll cook it a lower temperature because it cooked way faster than I anticipated. And I need a roller because I just used my hands to spread the dough out. Not the best recommendation. You live and learn, right?

Now I just need to find a new recipe for next weeks meal!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Girls Night Out | Weekend Wrapup

It's Monday. It's rainy. And I still feel sick as a dog. But not as much as I did last week because now I find getting off the couch doable. I call that progress my friends.

My girls night was a long time coming; and it was definitely needed. Don't get me wrong, I love my husband, but friends are important. Especially in a new place. All I have to say is: YAY FRIENDS! :):):):)
Selfie needed, obvi.

Friday night, two of the wives and I went to this wine and paint party place on the strip in Fort Walton and it was SO much fun!

There were about 8 other people there with us, and a boyfriend/husband too! He was a real trooper. We joked that if we brought along our husbands that they would beg to go to the nearest bar and have their own male time.

The couple that runs the place are the most adorable two people you would ever meet. The woman is the painter, who is a genius, and the man is the hostess with the mostess. What was really cool about the place is that they really encouraged doing your own thing with the painting and using different colors. They really embraced individuality and even the instructor said that she tries to make the painting different every time.

While I was doing the painting I kept thinking to myself "If I was doing this in my apartment and not in a class this would be taking wayyyyyy longer than 2 and a half hours." Like, honestly. I started sweating because I felt like I was being rushed or had to catch up to everyone else. There was just so much pressure! But, I gotta say I'm happy with how it turned out. I kept wanting to add more to it but had to fight my inner perfectionist control freak and just left it along so that I wouldn't mess it up and then be mad at myself for adding more.

Saturday and Sunday were very chill and laid back. Saturday, Blake had to coach his little league flag football team and the weather is FINALLY starting too cool down (slightly). Meaning that it was deadly humid out and it was comfortable enough to wear pants without sweating.

Cuties, right? What was even more adorable was when one of the kids was running for a touchdown one of the parents was running down the sideline with him while he scored. Probably the most adorable thing I've seen. Sadly they lost though, but only by a touchdown. What Blake heard from last weekend was that the team they played scored an absurdly high amount of points so the game and playing was actually good in comparison.

Sunday, we finally found a church that we both like which is super exciting! And it was only the second church we checked out so I call that a solid win.

Happy Monday! I'll be spending the rest of mine crafting more for our little apartment and tonight I'm cooking my first homemade meal

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday and Happy Fall! And this week started all of my beloved fall TV shows that I have been catching up on Netflix and counting down the days till the new seasons started again. Last night Grey's Anatomy made it's graceful appearance back to ABC and it could not have been better. Same with a new show How To Get Away With Murder. The show's pilot was awesome! I might've just found a new favorite. Then again I love all shows that surround murder and crime and this is a fun new twist around that. Side note: Criminal Minds comes back next Wednesday! Praise Derek Morgan and Spencer Reid <3 br="">

Along with my favorite shows coming back on, tonight is also my first ladies night since I've moved to Florida with some of the wives of Blake's friends and I couldn't be more excited. We're doing one of those wine and paint parties and the picture we're doing is super adorable. Yay friends!

I've been sick all week, maybe from recovering from our weekend in Tuscaloosa, or from the fact I stood in downpour for my love Sam Hunt; but I've spent a great ordeal of time on Pinterest snuggled in a blanket and my fuzzy socks. Naturally of course. Here are my favorites, kids.

It's the simple things really.

Not necessarily funny but just really, really true.

Especially on Facebook statuses. I have to restrain myself a lot from commenting on stupid statuses.

Super cute, and super rustic right?

Whenever I get a front porch I will definitely be doing this.

I'm dying to wear my sweaters again and it kinda (read: barely) is starting to cool down a touch here in Florida. Fingers crossed!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins. Because who doesn't love pumpkin and chocolate together??

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

DIY Running Bib and Medal Holder

I am super excited about this project I made. I made it as a birthday present for my Mom. She's been into running and races for the past year and she has been so successful in all of her achievements. She's been hanging up all of her race bibs and medals in the basement right in front of the treadmill as her inspiration. Which is super adorable of her! But my sisters and I wanted to get her something where she can hang all of those race bibs and medals in one area.

So I'm all "I don't need to buy something when I can just make it myself" type of gal. Especially when I already sometimes have all of the supplies on hand. And thanks to Pinterest, here was the inspiration behind the creation.

Now, I will show you step by step (with pictures!) of how to make this yourself!
The supplies needed for this fantastic craft are:
  • A color of Acrylic paint of your choosing, I chose purple because it's one of my mom's favorite colors
  • A big bottle of white Acrylic paint for the multiple layers for the base
  • Basswood plaque, it can be found at any of your convenience craft stores with all of the wood crafts
  • A hook. Conveniently the one I found is called a Swag Hook.
  • Two clips. I used the magnetic clips found in the school supplies section.
And of course Criminal Minds. A definite need for the project.

First, you will need to paint your base coat on the basswood. I used white and about 5 coats of it.

Next, you pick the design you want to paint on the basswood. At first I wanted to do a damask print, but then I quickly realized I'm not that talented. So then I decided to do a Moroccan-style print, which I found here.

Now you start painting with your color of choice! I went back and forth between outlining the print in purple or filling it in. But I'm super happy with the choice I went with.

Half-way through! You can see already how awesome it's going to look.
And here's the finished product of it. I did two coats of the purple acrylic paint and outlined the design in white for a cleaner, crisper look.

For both the hook and clips, I decided to paint both of them in black acrylic paint. And I'm happy I did because it looked so much better.

I traced around the clips and painted the circles so it would look clean before gluing them on.

Oh yeah, I also wrote on the top "Celebrate Every Mile" I looked up different fonts to use on dafont. I ended up just doing it free hand and kinda combining different styles. 

After screwing on the hook I knew I wanted to trace another sort of print around it. I decided on the fleur di lis and I'm super happy with how it came out. It really brought the whole project together.

Ain't it pretty?? My mom just got it in the mail and said that she absolutely loves it. I couldn't be more proud or happy about it. You know those projects after you're done with it you kinda are surprised of yourself? Yeah. That's this one right here. Ta da! If you like what you see, maybe I'll work out a deal with you. Maybe :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Air Force Graduation

It's almost been a year since Blake left for Basic Training. Which then means it's almost been a year since we got engaged! AH! Anyways. This isn't about me. This is about Blake and how proud I am about all of his achievements hes had in the short time of being enlisted.

Blake graduated in January of this year and I was super excited to see him after writing letters and the occasional phone call for two and a half months. I was especially excited to see him in his dress blues too :)

Thursday was the Airman Coin Ceremony and Friday was the actual Graduation. Friday and Saturday he got town passes so we were able to roam around the San Antonio area and enjoy as much time as we could together, even with his family in tow. 

Isn't he so handsome :)
And because in Illinois the weather is like 20 degrees, I took full advantage of the Texas weather and broke out my dresses and boots. 

I have to admit, I didn't cry like all of the other families and girlfriend did around me. And I really wanted to! But I didn't. And Blake was kinda happy about that. 
I would say that I probably would've enjoyed the whole weekend a lot more if everyone was on the same page. It got really stressful on my end trying to please everyone and to do the same things. 

But I was all about Blake and his weekend celebrating everything he's done for two and a half months. The fact that I got to spend time with him for four days before he reported to his technical training was good enough for me.

And sure enough the next time I would see him would be for our wedding two months later!

Linking up for Military Moments :)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Alabama Slammer | Weekend Wrapup

What is it about vacations and road trips that make you feel like you need at least more than 24 hours of sleep to fully recover? Because that's how I feel right now. After getting home yesterday, Blake and I just parked ourselves on the couch for the rest of the night until I was unable to get a full night of sleep.

Anyway, let's talk about my weekend in Tuscaloosa. That's what this is about right? Not my complaining about the lack of sleep I got the whole weekend. 

We got in Thursday for the concert we were going to later that night. After checking into the murder scene of a hotel, which no joke I've never been more scared of staying in a hotel before, I would've rather slept in my car, we took a drive over to campus to check it out and what not. 

Let me preface this by saying I loved the University of Illinois campus. It was the reason I wanted to go there in the first place because it was such a beautiful campus, and I still stand by that. But the University of Alabama campus is breathtaking. All of the buildings had pillars and looked brand new. Everything was close together but it looked huge at the same time. We drove down the main strip and that's where a lot of the fraternity houses were and those were equally as beautiful too.

Funny thing though, as we were driving down the main street every girl that we passed was wearing an oversized t-shirt and running shorts. Like oversized enough to where it was questionable if they were wearing shorts at all. I don't get it. I guess it's a thing. It was kinda a thing at Illinois but not enough where every single girl was wearing the same thing. 

After our little drive around campus we headed back to our tragic hotel and got ready for the concert. And so far it was turning out to be a beautiful night. It was at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater so it was going to be outside. There wasn't going to be any sign of rain. Well at least we thought so anyways. 

 We were more excited about Sam Hunt and Chase Rice than the main act of Darius Rucker. I'm a fan of some of his songs but he's not really my cup of tea. 

Right when my love Sam Hunt came on stage, it started drizzling. I sure as heck wasn't moving from my spot, a little rain wasn't going to get in my way of his sweet serenades. BUT, one song later, it started to downpour... OF COURSE. But, I still didn't move. While everyone else was leaving, Blake and I toughed it out and stood in our spot. And then the rain started to get out of control which made me start to take cover. And since everyone was starting to leave and go elsewhere meant that their closer seats were up for grabs! Holler! I got to seem him closer! 

When he was done preforming we took cover with everyone else. Some of the really intoxicated girls around us were screaming "OH MY GOD IT'S CANCELLED. MY HAIR IS SOAKED. WHY DID I WEAR ALL WHITE" I wasn't leaving until I actually heard from the staff that the thing was cancelled. Fair enough right? Sure enough 5 minutes later, and the storm getting much worse, the cancelled it. So we hightailed it out of their and walked the half mile back to our car. Which, we thought we were pretty slick for pay $10 cheaper than everyone else for parking a half mile away. What's the harm right? We'll get to walk off the Chipotle we just ate. HA. Fools. We got back to our car and drove back to the hotel to get out of our soaked through wardrobe and try to get dry.

Now lets fast forward 2 hours later, after we've showered and are no longer looking like soaked rats, I get a notification from the Amphitheater saying "Darius Rucker will be playing as scheduled at 9:20pm. It is safe to enter the building." I got that notification at 10 FREAKING PM. Oh, we were livid. Because not only were we told that it was cancelled, but now we were being notified 40 minutes after the fact of the concert resuming for it's 'scheduled time.' So we hoped in our car and went back to the Amphitheater, parking where ever I pleased which meant right next to the place, and talked to the staff to get some sort of refund. Which we fully intend on getting compensation for. We weren't the only ones upset about the matter.

The first security guy we talked to was super understanding about it. Which made me very happy. It's the definition of good customer service. You need to be understanding of what happened and to not act like a jacklick about it. That's where this other moron comes in. I don't know why he came up to us in the first place, because he didn't act like he cared about us being upset or wasn't going to even try to be understanding. Total jacklick. "I'm just going to play on my phone while these two people complain to me because I really don't care that they're upset about their experience. I'm getting paid either way for being here and this isn't even my event. Hollaaaa." K. Bye.

We were able to get some wristbands to stand in the pit for the last 15 minutes of the set. Which we should've just left anyways because I was no longer in the mood to be there but we drove all the way out there so what the heck, right? We left right before he played Wagon Wheel and I definitely wasn't going to stay around for that. 

Honestly, the situation wouldn't have been as bad if the concert was 'cancelled' after Chase Rice performed. We would've been happy to leave and not come back. Chase Rice and Sam Hunt were the only ones we wanted to see anyways. 

That was one hell of a Thursday. And only the first day of our trip. So it only had to go up from there right?

Friday we planned on spending it on campus to walk around and check out all of the stores. It was nearly impossible trying to find parking down there. Especially on the day before gameday, everyone had to move their cars by 5 pm. After finding 1 hour parking at the Publix on campus, we checked out the campus stores for some new Alabama swag. Everything we found was decently priced too! I walked away with a Comfort Colors long sleeve and a coffee mug and Blake got a new shirt and pullover quarterzip.

We rushed back to our car after the hour was up, which there was a cop in our lot checking out the cars that were there for longer than that, and drove around to try to find more parking but were out of luck. So we went over to the Paul Bryant Museum to kill some time before going back to the hotel and one of Blake's friends got into town. And I gotta say, I'm a sucker for a museum and this place was cool. It wasn't very big but it didn't really have to be because it was so informative of all of the coaching history on Alabama and then centered back to Paul Bryant.

What's really cool also is almost every intersection on that campus has the Alabama A logo in the middle of it. Pretty neat!

We headed back to the hotel rested before Blake's friend Kyle showed up for the game the next day. And after he showed up we headed over to Walmart to get supplies for our tailgate. Kyle wanted to see the campus so Blake drove him over while I stayed behind and started packing up everything we needed for the next day.

Saturday was Alabama gameday! And that meant setting up our tailgate at 6 in the morning which meant waking up earrrlllyyyy. Blake jumped out of bed like it was Christmas morning. And once we got there nobody was there. Yeah. We were the first ones at our tailgate spot. We set up camp and waited for everyone else to show up!

We made friends with others around us! Everyone there had a TV set up to watch SEC network which was actually going on right in front of Bryant-Denny Stadium. The game didn't started till 2:30 so we hung out at our spot till around 12:30 and made the long walk to the stadium. The campus is crazy on gamedays. Everyone is everywhere.

 Now our seats were high, high, high up. Like getting a leg workout high up. But the game was super fun! I've never seen a stadium so packed and loud and full of energy. It was awesome and I know we'll be going to at least one game a year.

 The first half of the game was a bit rough, the second half of the game was much better playing in Alabama's favor. And they won! Leaving the stadium everyone was flooding the streets. It was unbelievable. Quite the sight to see.

The weekend was really something. And I have the sunburn lines to prove it. 

Until next time, Alabama. Which will probably be next year.

Happy Monday!

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